Broke-Ass Author: Danielle Griggs


I got engaged Memorial Day Weekend in 2016. We set our wedding date for September of the next year because September is a special month for us and it gave us about 15 months to save for our wedding. I asked all my girls to be my bridesmaids and I was locked and loaded to go. I was trying to be gracious.

Then one of my bridesmaids got engaged near Thanksgiving and set her wedding date for the following June. She only allowed herself eight months for planning. Now let’s be real, I am human and was a little hurt that she set her wedding date before mine. It felt like she was stealing my thunder and I was getting pushed to the side. Her ceremony and reception are inconveniently spaced apart because they were the only times she could secure on such short notice. There are legit three hours between the ceremony and the reception.

One of my biggest goals during our engagement was to do my damndest NOT to be a giant bridezilla. We’ve all heard horror stories about brides who go completely nuclear over stupid things like place settings, what pattern to fold napkins in, or any number of other useless meltdowns. I refused to be characterized as that bride. So I did my absolute best not to show how hurt I was at the choices she made.

When I was planning things like the shower, rehearsal or bachelorette, I made a point of asking everyone what dates would be best for their schedules. My friend didn’t check with any of her other friends when she set the date for her shower and bachelorette party. I ended up missing most of her shower because it was scheduled the same day as graduation for my Masters degree. I just started a new job that has different time off requirements than my last one. While I had her wedding dates off at my old job, her wedding falls on one of the only six days that I am required to work on a weekend at the new place. To make things even more special, her bachelorette party also fell on one of those six days, so I could go to neither. Her wedding also happens to fall on the same day my little brother graduates high school — even more precious.

I feel like a total and complete tool for missing these really important milestones in her life. It makes it look like I’m missing all of these events on purpose when that’s not the case at all. I don’t want it to be a battle of her against me, but as the days tick past it’s morphing into this. Her wedding is in a week so hopefully things go back to a bit of normalcy after this all blows over.

When she got engaged I offered to help in whatever ways she needed, including the printing of her paper things since I have a sweet color laser printer. She called Monday asking that I print up two separate batches of things, the programs and the favor tags. She sent me the files with super vague instructions that prompted me to ask her a legion of questions to make sure I had everything right. I printed 75 pages of favor tags and began cutting them out for her so she would have one less thing to worry about. I sent her a picture to show the finished product to make sure that’s what she wanted before I cut out the rest and she had a meltdown that the tags were not exactly four inches. The measurement was off by an eighth of an inch. I added border around the cutting to allow for this but she didn’t want it to look like that and asked me to stop printing.

Darling, I had already printed all of them.

I understand wanting things to be exactly perfect in every way possible, but we live in an imperfect world. If you want something to be exactly one way, please share your ENTIRE vision with me so I can make that dream a reality. Now I have a stack of wasted paper that I cannot reuse for anything.

I hate that I am losing my cool.

These are all very small things that should not matter in the end. So what if she has her wedding date first? It might be a tiny bit rude but it’s not like she stabbed me. What is frustrating me the most is that I have simply stopped talking to her because I know I am not capable of having a nice conversation at the moment.

You know the saying: if you have nothing nice to say, shut the hell up.

This bit of drama is not worth losing a friendship over. Yet, I find that I cannot stop dwelling on it. I have no idea how to handle this. So far the battle plan is to ignore her until a week or so after her honeymoon. Perhaps she will sheath her fangs and shrink down to size after bridezilla smashing a few cities. Maybe it’s me that needs a chance to shrink back down to normal size. Maybe I’m the one out there smashing cities without even knowing it.

What would you do in my shoes?

  • 6/6

    Keepsake box from Etsy Seller mariaallenboutique

    Tradition recommends a bride have something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue as she goes down the aisle. I’ve been throwing tradition to the wind all Willy Nilly the entire time but this one gives me pause. Four items — how hard can that be? Famous last words.

    Obviously the something new is easy enough. Essentially everything I’m wearing is new: Dress, shoes, jewelry … all of that has been purchased expressly for the wedding. Something blue is also not an issue at all: My colors are navy and sunflower, so I could tie blue in anywhere. My shoes will be blue and the stone in my ring is blue as well.

    Something new and blue, check.

    Where I’m currently struggling is something borrowed and something old. My mother didn’t save her wedding dress when she got married because she knew neither my sister or I would fit in it when we were old enough to be married. My sister and I hit that size in our youth. So there goes that idea. While Michael’s mother probably still has her wedding dress, it is from her second marriage. You don’t realize you have a superstition until it stares you in the face. So that’s out.

    One of my girlfriends has offered to let me borrow an apron her mother made her for her wedding day to wear while she eats BBQ. While I have no fears of spilling BBQ on a white dress, it is likely a good idea. But, I’m not going to be wearing it when I go down the aisle, so maybe it doesn’t count? I’m pretty much fully decked out already, what else can I possibly add to what I’m wearing/carrying for this old borrowed stuff? I don’t have a garter, I’m not really sure I want one. We aren’t having a garter toss and I doubt Michael will even care if I have one, let’s be real. Also, borrowing one of those seems a bit icky, not really sure how I feel about that.

    I have seen some brides wrap family heirlooms or scraps of fabric in their bouquets to help incorporate items. Neither of my parents really have any pieces of fabric that are important enough to borrow. My grandmother on my mom’s side was married three different times, so I don’t want anything from her. My father’s mother (and father) have already passed away so I can’t ask them. Of my assorted aunts and uncles on both sides, none of their first marriages lasted. Oy vey.

    My stuffed bro Pango

    I have a stuffed toy that I’ve had since birth. I’m not really wild about cutting a piece of him off to take with me, but I could steal a bit of his stuffing I suppose. He’s a bit too big to bring with me down the aisle.

    I feel like I’m spinning my wheels on something that, ultimately, doesn’t really matter. It would be nice to do, but maybe I’m just wasting my time on something pointless.

    Has anyone else had this problem? Thoughts? Suggestions?

  • 5/23

    Gift-giving is perhaps one of my favorite pastimes. Michael thinks I’m insane for getting the amount of sheer joy I get from purchasing/making, wrapping and giving gifts to others. I also love getting gifts, too. Yes, I have come to terms with the fact that I’m a small child trapped in a grown person’s body. That being said, I have known, even before we got…

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    An older person once told me that you shouldn’t marry someone unless they were your best friend. At the time I didn’t really understand what he meant, but I think I have a better idea now. Michael and I have been going out for almost eight years now. We’ve fought as fiercely as siblings at times. We’ve laughed so hard we cried and cried so…

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    So the bridal shower has been sort of an ongoing issue with my bride tribe and I. To be honest, a shower was never even on my radar as something I would need to worry about. Isn’t that a time when friends and family get together and shower the bride with gifts? Shouldn’t her only job be to show up? Welp, apparently not. My MOH…

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  • 4/11

    If you saw my last post, you know what I’m in the middle of packing and moving everything. I can’t find anything because most of it is already packed. A few days before I found out I was getting a new job and moving, I started doing trials on drying flowers. As a broke, DIY bride, I was hoping I could preserve my own wedding…

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    The four in the middle:  planner/doer, her fiance, me and my MOH When it comes time to pick your ladies to stand by you, take into consideration their particular skill sets before you ask them. I have an overwhelming six bridesmaids. I have one that is a doer and a planner. There’s an artsy one, one with a green thumb, a miniature one whose mom…

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  • 2/27

    Hair trial I have reached a weird point in my wedding planning. It's March, and all of the boxes are basically checked. Venue, check. Dress, yep. Hair trial, been there. Vendors, nailed it. It's basically empty nest syndrome for wedding planning. I keep glancing over my shoulder and looking around expecting some giant forgotten thing to come knock me on my ass. All you ever…

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