Protocol Prompts: “Your” Day

I am slowly on the mend, and catching up on posts I’ve missed in my Google Reader. A phrase in this post reminded me of a recent post on What Would Emily Post Do?

In the post, Anna was recounting a recent trip to DC, where a woman offered “Grandma” as a word that is brought to mind by the word “etiquette.” Many people have this misconception, that etiquette is just about the “rules,” and only apply if you’re the prim and proper, stuffy type. I couldn’t agree more with Anna Post’s assessment that etiquette is less about being a stickler for “the rules,” and more about consideration for others.

Where this ties into the Vintage Glam post today is with one little phrase: “So we compromised.”

You hear horror stories of bridezillas who ask their attendants to get implants or at least padded bras so that the entire wedding party will look similarly…ahem…well-endowed for the ceremony (not kidding, heard it with my own two ears!!). On the flip side, you hear stories of “momzillas” who take over their daughters’ weddings, with nary a thought for what the bride actually wants. Either is a terrible way to plan a wedding.

Yes, it’s your day. But anyone who’s gotten far in the planning process knows that sweeping, unilateral decisions only carry one so far. You do still want to be on speaking terms with your family and friends after the wedding. At the same time…it’s your day. You also want to actually recognize the wedding at the end of the process. A bride should strive to treat everyone’s opinions with consideration — including her own. Which is where compromise comes in, and links back to Anna’s point about etiquette. 

With any wedding, there are things that are fall-on-your-sword important. For me, one of those things is having nothing fussy and frilly. Pretty, yes. Fussy, no. There will, in fact, be no ribbon rosettes anyplace near my wedding. Period. Minor point for some people, but for me it was a super big deal. 

Then there are the things in the middle. Perfect ground for compromise. For me, one of those things was having children in the wedding party. Now, very small children were absolutely, positively not going to happen. I don’t relish the thought of night sweats between now and the wedding stressing about what the kids might do during the ceremony. But it was very important to T’s mom that kids be in the wedding, so we compromised by asking T’s 8-year-old cousins to be in the wedding party, and the little ones are going to be greeters. 

On the far end of the spectrum are the things you really couldn’t care less about. For me, that includes the bridesmaids shoes and hair. They’re all grown women who have been dressing themselves for a long time. Since I don’t think any of them have it in for me and want to ruin my wedding (or I probably wouldn’t have asked them to stand up with me!) or look ridiculous, I’m trusting them to choose whatever is best for them. I can safely say that of all the weddings I’ve been to, I can’t remember a single hairdo. Not one. So I’d rather have them be happy and comfortable with their own selection.

In my opinion, Ashley gets it. At the end of the day, etiquette — wedding or otherwise — is about consideration. Putting yourself in their shoes. Recognizing the worth of your own feelings. And then finding the happy middle ground.

Published in: on March 30, 2009 at 11:01 am  Leave a Comment  
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