Woman urged by bride to attend hen do instead of spending time with dying relative

Danielle Fowler
Freelance Writer
What would you do if you were in this bridesmaid's shoes? [Photo: Getty]

Sometimes, there’s good reason for turning down an invitation but one bride isn’t having any excuses when it comes to her big day.

An anonymous woman took to Reddit to explain that a close relative of hers is dying and she needs to miss her friend’s hen party in order to be by their side.

“A close relative of mine is in hospital dying of cancer right now and has been given days to live,” she explained. “He is my family’s only priority right now and we are all devastated, he is suffering awfully and we spend our days in the hospital almost waiting for him to be put out of his misery.”

On Saturday, I am supposed to be attending my best friend’s hen party. I am the bridesmaid and have arranged it all with the other bridesmaid.”

The party is set to be casual drinks at a friend’s house before a meal out and night on the town. But given the recent circumstances, she no longer wishes to attend.

“I in no way want to attend,” she emphasised. “I can’t think of anything worse right now than hosting a group of 14 guests and acting happy when I’ve spent the last week crying, and spending my evening in a club full of drunk people.”

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But when she approached the bride-to-be to explain the situation, it didn’t go as planned.

She wrote [sic], “I’ve called bride tonight to try to hint I may not be able to attend and hoped she’d understand. She lost her dad a few years ago to cancer, she knows the impact it has. She was supportive in the conversation but also said as long as I’ve organised and attend the hen, then she’s happy.

One bridesmaid is seeking advice as she's unable to attend her friend's hen do [Photo: Getty]

“She’s not even considering the possibility of me not attending. My boyfriend and family think she is being ridiculous, and I am getting annoyed that she won’t openly give me the option to do whatever I need to do. I don’t want to let her down as she means a lot to me, but I am in no position to support her and her party right now.”

Although she insists that the bride’s response “was not rude or upsetting”, she asked fellow Reddit users to give advice.

A large number agreed that she needs to put herself first but must to be more direct when addressing the situation.

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“Right now she might still think that an evening out would be good for you,” one wrote. “Please tell her plainly that you are emotionally exhausted and grieving, and that, while you love and support her, you just can’t attend her party. If she is a good friend, she will be disappointed but understanding. If she pitches a fit, then you’ve got a bridezilla. Stand your ground and take care of yourself.”

“It's totally reasonable of you to skip the hen if you explain you're simply not up for a party,” another commented. “However, there's nothing bridezilla-ish about your friend not picking up on your hints or guessing at what you want. She's not a mindreader.”

A third agreed, emphasising: “Right now, you and your family come first. Everything else including a silly party is so far behind that they have disappeared from sight.”

How would you have handled the situation?

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