First, Choose Your MOH Wisely
Let's get real about the trials and tribulations of selecting your Maid of Honor.
If you have just one sister that you're close with, or if you have one just one best friend, and if that one person is a responsible orator with a penchant for delegation and party planning… You're set.
No worries. Don't bother reading this blog. Go propose to her with a Ring Pop and enjoy a blessed, joyous engagement year.
Otherwise, sit back. And prepare for some straight talk.
Customarily, a bridal party consists of one bride, one maid or matron of honor ("MOH"), and a handful of bridesmaids. These days, it's common to have two MOHs in your party.
How all those ladies participate in your planning is entirely up to you. But make sure all roles and responsibilities are clear from the get go.
"That's not necessary," you say. "My whole bridal party is super close. We've been best friends since we were three. We've never had an argument in our lives. We'll just figure it out and be fine."
Oh, honey, no.
Even for the most laissez-faire bride, planning a wedding is not like any normal interaction you and your friends will ever have. Most brides enter into the wedding planning phase with at least two expectations…
You want your shower to be a surprise or you don't. (Or you don't want a shower at all!)
You want to be involved in planning your bachelorette party or you don't. (Or you don't want a bach — haha who are we kidding. Moving on…)
Regardless, these are all things that should be communicated to your bridal party up front, so you are never disappointed, and so they are never stressed out.
Remember… those ladies are only there as a favor to you. Being in someone's wedding is a huge time and financial commitment. Help them out by clearly setting expectations right away.
Open Channels of Communication
For the Type A MOH:
In a traditional setting, the MOH makes all the plans for the bridal shower and bachelorette party and then simply informs the bridesmaids of what's going on or delegates certain roles to them.
Let's call her Type A.
If that is the case with yours, give her a gentle nudge to tell the bridesmaids this early on. The bridesmaids love you, too. And they will undoubtedly have ideas for your events.
Miscommunication between your bridal party can cause unnecessary friction. If they know in advance that they can submit suggestions but otherwise just sit back and relax, everyone will be happy.
For the Type B MOH:
Some MOHs do not want all that traditional responsibility. They welcome suggestions and assistance from the bridesmaids and want to make your events a group effort.
Let's call them Type B.
If that is the case with yours, give her a gentle nudge to communicate with the entire bridal party often to keep the ideas flowing and the assignments congenial. This can be email threads, video chats, or even in-person brunches.
Your MOH won't feel stranded and nervous on her own. Instead, she'll know she has the support of the rest of the bridesmaids, and they'll know their contributions are important.
This Is Especially True If…
You have any bridesmaids who may feel stiffed.
Maybe you give the MOH role to your sister and your best friend is relegated to a bridesmaid. Or the other way around. Whatever their official role is, they'll still want to throw you the best shower and a bachelorette party of your dreams.
You have both a Type A MOH and a Type B MOH.
I had one of each. Type A got mad at Type B for including the rest of the bridal party in responsibilities that she viewed as specifically MOH duties. Type B then stepped back without telling the bridesmaids, Type A stalled out, and literally nothing got done. Of course, all six members of the bridal party were upset, and I ended up planning my own bachelorette party.
Aligning expectations and opening channels of communication will keep everyone on the same page and feeling valued.
No matter what, your engagement year with your closest friends and family will be full of promise and anticipation.
But by limiting potential conflict through setting expectations and opening communication, you set yourself and your favorite people up for fewer challenges along the way…
And free up your time for the joy, bonding, and mimosa brunches that this special time is really all about.
Writer Fawn believes in the power of a well-crafted story, the promise of an adventurous future, and the perfection of a Nutella-covered strawberry.
Vow Muse can free up even more of your time by helping you create custom wedding vows and take further stress off your MOH by assisting with her speech. Let us check a couple things off your list today!