Weddings can be stressful even at the best of times. There's so much to think about from the table decorations, to the music, to the photographer — choosing your maid of honor might just send you soaring into Bridezilla mode. Unfortunately we can't all have Anna Kendrick as our maid of honor, but we can have someone of our choosing who we hold dear to our hearts. Your maid of honor could be a close relative, your childhood friend, or your colleague who is also your BFF. There are no solid rules as to who can fill this important position and if you desire, you can even pick a Man of Honor instead. It's your wedding, and your decision at the end of the day — but that doesn't mean it's always an easy choice.
It's awesome that you can bestow such a meaningful title upon someone who is really important to you and invite them to play a key part in your wedding. However, there are often a ton of responsibilities that come with being a MOH. Some duties might include: planning the bachelorette party, performing a special speech, attending vendor meetings, and crafting DIY projects. That's just the tip of the iceberg. You're going to need someone who will be there by your side, through the good times and the bad, who can handle both the honor and the responsibilities associated with the task. So here's a little advice on how to choose your maid of honor, if you want to designate one for your special day.
1. Make Sure Your Candidates Understand The Responsibility
Weddings are supposed to be incredible, life changing, and super fun, but they are not solely an activity for drunk dancing and open bars (although that's fun, too, of course). You need a maid of honor who will be able to make you laugh when it's all getting a bit too much, but this shouldn't come at the detriment of your big day. Most people hope to only get married once in their lifetime, so you don't want your special day (or the events surrounding your wedding) spoiled because your bridesmaids didn't take their roles seriously. Be open and honest about what you expect from your bridesmaids and your maid of honor, plus the differences between their roles. Discuss with your potential bridal party if they feel they can commit to your wedding preparations and the duties required of them leading up to and on your wedding day. If their lives are too hectic, they may take themselves out of the running which will make your job easier.
2. Honestly Evaluate Your Bridesmaids
It's difficult not to let your rose tinted glasses cloud your vision. It would be wise to take a metaphorical step back from your bridesmaids and view them through the eyes of your friends and family. For instance, the girl you've known practically all of your life may actually be a flake who is difficult to pin down for meetings, or the super fun gal you've come to do everything with may have terrible organizational skills. It might be wise to make a list of their pros and cons in regards to the role of the maid of honor and see who comes out on top.
3. Think Of Family First
If you're close with your sister and you also have an amazing BFF, it may be wise to choose your sister as your maid of honor. We all like to think that our friendships will last forever, but there are occasions where you and a friend may outgrow each other. Although you may be best buds with someone now, the chances are in ten years this could change, whereas your sister will always be your sister. Obviously if you have been BFFs with your bestie as long as you can remember, then chances are you're both in it for the long haul, which could make your decision really difficult. If you really can't decide, you could incorporate both a matron and a maid of honor into your festivities. It's also important to note that often family isn't necessarily our blood-related relatives, but the friends who have been there through thick and thin, no matter what — even if you don't talk as much as you once did.
4. Don’t Feel Pressured Into A Decision
Your wedding day is probably one of the only days of your life where you and your partner can plan everything to be exactly how you want it, without feeling pressured into decisions. This extends to choosing your maid of honor, so don't let your friend guilt trip you into picking her because you were her maid of honor, or your mother-in-law politely insist that it must be your fiancé's cousin. Your choice of maid of honor is your decision and there's nothing more to it.
5. Keep It Fair
If the whole concept of picking a maid of honor sends your bridesmaids into a frenzy of Bridesmaids proportions, then just don't get involved. Your friends may all stake their claim in the runnings, but remember to evaluate them fairly and don't get swayed by promises of them reciprocating the gesture, or fancy gifts to try and win your favor. Your decision could seem almost impossible, especially if you have to choose between multiple sisters or pick from a tight-knit friendship group. So if the situation arises where you honestly can't decide, maybe draw it out of a hat or flip a coin. This will take the decision out of your hands and ensure you don't hurt anyone's feelings.
6. Go With Your Gut
As with most things in life, it's always a good idea to trust to your instincts. Sometimes it's best to ignore your logical brain and embrace the feeling in your gut that should point you in the right direction. Likewise, if you have a bad feeling about picking someone as your maid of honor, it might be wise to heed your instincts and take that person out of the running.
7. Ensure All Of Your Bridesmaids Feel Valued
At the end of the day you can only pick one maid of honor, which could leave someone feeling a little disappointed. To combat this, ensure all of your bridesmaids are made to feel special and valued. In order to do this, you could take advantage of any unique talents they may possess — such as baking, crafting, or singing — and utilize their skills. Alternatively, you could designate a role to each 'maid so they feel like they're playing an important part in your wedding. On your wedding day, make sure to gift them thoughtful presents for their help and support. You could even handwrite them a personal thank you card which is sure to make them feel super valued.
Use these tips to make choosing your maid of honor a piece of cake, and remember that you're giving someone an incredible gift, which is bound to make someone happy beyond words.