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We sure do receive a lot of wedding questions here, so if you’d like to relieve us of some of the responsibility of answering them properly, take yourself to the comments and advise our next two correspondents. First, we hear from Ben from Britain:
I am a man and in the summer my female friend is getting married. At this wedding I am to be a ‘bridesmaid’.
I have already rejected the idea of carrying a bouquet, which she wasn’t that amused by.
My first question is, am I wrong to not want to be instantly labelled as ‘the gay one’? As it’s pretty obvious already, me being referred to as bridesmaid.
My second question is, she has raised the issue of suit hire and said to me ‘We will leave your fitting for last in case you want to lose weight.’ I am 6ft and have a 38 inch waist. Am I within my social right to not go at all or should I instead intensively eat nothing but chips until the suit fitting?
1. Of course you’re not wrong. Why should your sexuality and/or gender be the defining factor about you? However, when you agreed to be in the bride’s band of indentured slaves, you were effectively signing up for whatever degradation and subjugation the bride wishes. And that includes carrying flowers, wearing a dress, participating in the choreographed dance down the aisle for YouTube, assisting with the bride’s pre-show colonic irrigation…
2. Stuff a pillow down your shirt for the fitting. And, for funsies, a cucumber down your trousers.
All too often, people who are getting married think they have free rein to treat their loved ones like crap, don’t they? (Coincidentally, since my wedding day, my friends now regard me with a mixture of terror and disgust! They’re probably just jealous, right?) However, our next questioneer Laura from Australia seems to be trapped in a cycle of mutual consideration:
As a single lady, if I get invited to a wedding could I take a friend along as my ‘plus one’? Or is it poor form as I know weddings cost a lot and they probably don’t want to pay for an extra meal for my friend. Making small talk to a bunch of people I don’t know over dinner fills me with genuine anxiety and having a friend there would make things less awkward as I’m not great at that sort of thing. Your thoughts?
Well, if the couple actually stated on your invitation that you were welcome to bring a cohort, then they are acquiescing to the possibility of paying to feed someone they don’t know in exchange for your contentment (or bulking up their audience). But if they didn’t, then I don’t think you can bring along a freeloader – and if you yourself don’t know anyone at the wedding, then the person who is only going along because you’re making them is unlikely to have a particularly good time in a roomful of strangers and salmon en croute.
It’s fine to fly solo, and if you really expect that there will be no mutual friends at the event, allay your worries by asking the couple if they can seat you amongst nice people who are easy to talk to. Hopefully they will be considerate of their friends’ social requirements, but as per my point above, it’s far from a given. So maybe take a good book along, as back-up.