Bride-to-Be Sparks Controversy Saying Bridesmaids Shouldn't Pay "For a Single Thing"

“Your wedding is not your bridesmaid's financial responsibility.”

A bride-to-be sparked online debate after sharing her unorthodox views on the unfair financial burden placed on bridesmaids. The TikTok user, whose first name is Claudia, believes the bride and groom should be responsible for all wedding costs, including anything related to the wedding party. "Your wedding is not your bridesmaid's financial responsibility," she says.

"If they were a guest, they would be paying a certain amount to come to your wedding. Sure, in wedding gifts, maybe they're buying a new dress, for example, but if they're in your bridal party, they're paying for a lot of stuff." Here's why Claudia doesn't think bridesmaids should be on the hook for their dresses and other expenses.

Consider Their Budget

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Claudia is getting married in August 2023 and has no plans to force expenses on her bridesmaids. "If they're in your bridal party, they're paying for a lot of stuff. Bridal shower hens, party makeup, hair, if you're paying for that, a dress, jewelry, shoes, and a wedding gift. On top of that, you're essentially asking for them to pay for your financial responsibilities, right? It's your wedding. You want to have a wedding, and yet you are expecting them to put their financial goals or their finances to the side to make way for your wedding when it may not be in their budget at all," she says in her video.

Be Considerate

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Claudia says brides need to get over the idea that being a bridesmaid is an honor. "To the brides that think, oh, this is a privilege to be my bridesmaids, I would implore you to think again, your bridesmaids are dedicating their time, their emotional energy, their physical energy to be a bridesmaid in whatever aspect you expect them to show up for. So asking them to pay financially on top of that."

She adds, "And weddings are not cheap. Hold on. Like weddings are not cheap. It's gonna be around a thousand dollars on average, the Australian average for a bridesmaid to pay her way from start to finish for the wedding—if I was a bridesmaid, I would not be comfortable with that cost. So you need to ask yourself, is this financially viable for my friend? If you are gonna ask them, to pay their own way, is this financially viable? Would I be comfortable paying X amount of money that I'm asking them to pay?"

Being a bridesmaid is often considered an honor because it is a way for the bride to show her appreciation and gratitude to the women who have been an important part of her life. Bridesmaids are typically chosen from the bride's closest friends and family members, and being asked to be a part of the wedding party is seen as a sign of the bride's trust and affection.

While being a bridesmaid can be a significant commitment, including time and financial obligations, many women still view it as an opportunity to participate in a special event and support a loved one. Bridesmaids often form close bonds with one another during the planning and preparation leading up to the wedding, and the experience can be a meaningful one.

Additionally, the role of the bridesmaid has evolved over time, and many brides are now conscious of the costs and time commitments associated with the role. Many brides now try to be considerate of their bridesmaids and may offer to cover certain expenses or be flexible with scheduling to make the experience less burdensome. Ultimately, being a bridesmaid is a personal choice, and some women may view it as an honor while others may decline the invitation based on their individual circumstances.

Cherish Your Friendships

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The bride says expecting bridesmaids to pay may cause resentment. "Do I want this money situation to cause a wedge in my friendship? And can I even afford to have bridesmaids? If you can't pay for it, then realistically, you shouldn't be able to, you shouldn't have bridesmaids. Every situation is different. Yes, you can have bridesmaids who are like, look, I'm happy to pay. Like my friends have offered, my bridesmaids have offered, look, we want to pay for these."

She adds, "And I personally don't feel comfortable asking them to pay for things when I have asked them to be in my bridal party. It's not a privilege. It's work for them, and they're my friends and they love me. They wanna support me, but it's not their responsibility to pay around seven to $800 at the moment per bridesmaid to be in my wedding. It's just not fair."

It's Not Just About You

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Claudia makes the point that the bridal party might not feel comfortable saying how they feel. "Your bridesmaids may not feel comfortable coming to you and saying, Hey, listen, I can't afford this because they love you and they want you to have the best wedding ever. But you need to think about their financial situations as well. It's not just about you. Just because it's your day doesn't mean that they care as much about it as you do. You are the only person as a bride who cares as much about your wedding as you do—maybe a controversial hot take."

@partygirlclauds should your bridesmaids pay to be in your wedding? #bridesmaids #financetok #wedding #2023bride @Victoria | She's on the Money ♬ original sound – LIFESTYLE ✨ WEDDINGS

The tradition of bridesmaids dates back to ancient Rome, where it was customary for the bride to be accompanied by 10 female attendants. These attendants were meant to confuse evil spirits and ward off any ill fortune that might befall the bride on her wedding day. In medieval Europe, bridesmaids were often dressed in similar clothing to the bride in order to confuse any potential kidnappers or suitors.

The concept of bridesmaids as we know them today, however, can be traced back to Victorian England. During this time, bridesmaids were chosen from the bride's closest friends and family members and were tasked with helping the bride prepare for the wedding and providing emotional support throughout the day. Today, bridesmaids continue to play a significant role in weddings, often helping with planning and preparation in the lead-up to the big day and standing by the bride's side during the ceremony.

TikTok Responds

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Comments on Claudia's post are mostly supportive. "Thiissss tho!! 🫶🏼🫶🏼 it's an honor but not a financial burden for them," one commenter said. "I thought it was normal for the bride to pay for everything. I was gobsmacked when I heard some have to pay for their own dresses 😳," said another. Another says you should "feel like you should only have the amount of bridesmaids you can afford. I don't want to stress anyone out financially." But not everyone agrees, "Bridesmaids have the option to say NO you are an adult," wrote Asia Mila. "Bridesmaids have the option to say NO you are an adult," added Amber.

Ferozan Mast
Ferozan Mast is a science, health and wellness writer with a passion for making science and research-backed information accessible to a general audience. Read more
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