A Cautionary Tale
…..that’s what this is.
I tried to come up with a better, more descriptive title, but all I could muster was
So, A Cautionary Tale it is. Let’s begin: Jake & I got engaged in September 2015, after 10 ½ years of dating. I was impatiently waiting, so I wanted to jump right into planning. After some back-and-forth between seasons, we settled on December 31, 2016 - New Year’s Eve!
It’s been my #1 Favorite Holiday since I was small, even besting Christmas. The major venues secured, we set about choosing our Bridal Party - immediately 4 women popped into my head.
Hayley, Brisbin, Britt & N. These women are my sister, two of my very closest friends since grade school & high school, and my college roommate. I was set! Just look at my lovelies:
This picture was taken in January 2012 - a “look into the future” of my 4 future bridesmaids helping me celebrate my 27th Birthday.
A collage of my beautiful crew I created to “announce” my bridal on Facebook … which is a thing Americans do.
And then, a thought creeped in…… “shit, I’m in SO-AND-SO’s wedding.”
Let’s call her Felicia Bye.
Not “I was in Felicia’s wedding,” but “I am…”
She wasn’t quite yet in the “obligation bridesmaid” category, her wedding date was set about 4 months before mine.
Should I ask to avoid any drama and hurt feelings, with her event so close?
Or should I not ask, just deal with any drama and hurt feelings, and go with my gut? We were friends, I genuinely enjoyed her company - what was the matter?
So I asked, and she said yes! Hugs and smiles all around. The next few months flew. I decided to rent bridesmaid dresses from Vow to be Chic, so in lieu of a day out shopping, I planned a “Bridal Brunch & Bubbly” at my sister Hayley’s home, complete with a Bloody Mar & Mimosa bar.
We rented the target dress in a few try-on sizes, and to try on, and brunch food was planned. We chose a mutually agreeable date between the 6 of us. The day came, and everyone arrived …….. except Felicia. No problem! I was used to her running late, so I expected that. I did get a text from her, saying she’d be a few minutes late. So, we decided to hold off a bit on brunch and wait for her. We caught up, had a few drinks, laughed. And an hour had passed. Two of my bridesmaids were breastfeeding at the time, one was 6 months pregnant, and my sister and I just like love food, so we decided to eat. I sent Felicia a text to check her ETA - she responded “horrible.”
I could give you minute-by-minute texts & details about that day, but I won’t. I could share every little fact, statement, and question between us on the phone later that week. But, I won’t, because it does not matter - the fact is...
Except that last part is NOT true. She did NOT “move on gracefully” and instead chose to harass me via text message for two months before I finally blocked her. Enjoy a sampling of the best messages below:
“W tells M all the time that you will get divorced with jake so have fun with that as best man and you treat me like garbage.”
“Like M said jake travels for work because your evil.”
“Choose M cause hunny he talks alot of shit about you he says you and jake are just a divorce in the making and how jake likes railing that hog.”
(“W” is our best man, “M” is one of our groomsmen who was once engaged to Felicia Bye. All typos are hers.)
This all started at the end of May 2016, and I stopped feeding the fire and ceased to respond to her on July 5th.
After that point, I received forty-four texts from her, until I finally blocked her on all platforms and have heard nothing from her since
(But, now have to try and get compensation for the $306 bridesmaid dress for her cancelled wedding - more on that in another post, maybe? Woof.).
How did I miss this?
Was this her normal persona?
Sure, she had some personal struggles in the preceding year, but did that unearth this behavior or shift her psyche to a dark place? Will we reconcile in the future? Looking back, when decided to invite her to be a bridesmaid, I focused on length of friendship, instead of quality. I didn’t see it the way I should have- the I should have been “normal Hilary,” and taken the drama and feelings out of it, like I do in all other situations, but I did not. I put much more stock in the relationship than I should have, and I hoped that maybe I was just missing something.
As a human, as a former friend, I wish her the best. I hope she finds peace, happiness, whatever she seeks, and I wish her well. But in the context of Jake & I’s marriage, I have no time for that treatment, and I should have trusted my gut.
If you are in a similar situation, please consider this story. Please contact me if you’re unsure, or need more detail - I can provide it. At the very least, consider waiting to ask someone you’re not sure of, until this tale sinks in.
I cannot tell you the emotional, social and financial stress this has put on us as we approach our wedding. Sure, nearly every wedding has some drama mixed in, but this mess makes everything I’ve heard pale in comparison.
I am happy to report that my remaining bridal party was and is awesome, is supportive, close knit, and ready to go for December 31, 2016. No matter the drama, no matter the future, Jake & I will marry in just 115 (!!) days, and live happily ever after.
Hilary & Jacob