What do I do my Maid of Honor Backed out via text

Last night I received a text message from my MOH who has been acting distant for the last couple weeks. She backed out of the wedding. Dresses are already ordered and in order to get another in time for the wedding we’d have to order it by this Thursday and that would guarantee it will arrive 2 wks before the wedding, not leaving much time for alterations. I paid for and ordered all the girls dresses to save them some money because it was cheaper to order them all together and all ship to one address and I wanted to make it as affordable as possible for them. All the bridesmaids had paid me for their dress except my MOH. She had been stressing about finances so I told her not to worry about it, whenever she was able to pay that was fine with me, and we’ll work something out no matter what so not to worry. She was very involved, going to bridal shows with me, wanting to go with when I looked for dresses, and just other details. I let her pick out the bridesmaids dresses that she liked. A couple weeks ago I was out of town for a week and getting texts like normal from her. I get back to town and she appeared a completely different person. I asked if everything was okay and she said shes just been working on herself and busy. Completely fine, I want all my friends to be happy and healthy. I tried to be there as a friend, as she had been confiding in me prior to this. As I know she’s been stressed financially I wanted to make this as easy on her as possible. My parents offered for her to stay at their house all weekend so she didn’t need to worry about hotel costs, I told her not to get us any gift that her just being part of the day and being there standing up for me was all the gift we need. She texted last night that she didn’t think she can be the friend I need her to be. So I called her (she’d been previously not answering my calls) so I was surprised she answered. I told her that my other bridesmaids and mother can plan the shower and bachelorette party, and we can help with costs if we need to. Told her it is important to me that she be in the wedding because she is a good friend. So she can take time and work on herself, not worry at all about anything wedding related, and she still said she didn’t want to do it. All she would have to do is show up on that day, everything else was going to be done and taken care of for her, I’m not sure how much easier I could have made it. I then asked her what I’m supposed to do, I have a dress coming made to fit her, she hasn’t paid me for it, and I don’t know if there is time to get anyone else a dress. Her response to this question was “I don’t care what you do, if I have to pay for the dress fine, I don’t care”…Never once in the conversation did she have any remorse or say sorry for backing out on me. She could have easily said I’m sorry I just can’t do this financially, I feel bad but it I just can’t afford it. But she didn’t she tried to make me feel like it was my fault she backed out, that by trying to be there for her I was being “selfish”…when really I had stopped talking about anything related to me or the wedding and was just talking to her about her, trying to be there for her and be a good friend. What do I do? I have a dress coming for her, that she hasn’t paid for. Do I just have to eat the cost of the dress? And I don’t know who to ask to take her spot, plus I feel horrible asking someone else after all the other girls have already ordered their dresses…Do I tell the person I ask about what happened so they understand and don’t feel like a last resort? Also, I’m unsure who to ask, and afraid to ask another friend in fear that they could do the same thing to me? Do I ask the MOH that backed out to pay for the dress, or just be done with her since she doesn’t seem to care about our friendship either….Do I ask my friend from high school that I’ve always kept in contact with and try and see whenever I got back to my home town? Or Do I ask our best mans wife who I’ve only met and spent time with 3 times but each time we got along great, and I think we’d be much closer if they didnt live 8 hours away? Our best man’s wife will always be a part of my life because he is my fiance’s best friend since childhood who he’s never lost touch with…I also feel like my friend from high school will always be in my life….Is it asking the best mans wife whose also our friend to much for them both to be in the wedding? Or would it maybe be best to ask her, and be more fun for her if they are both in the wedding? Someone please help me, I am so confused as to what I am supposed to do about the MOH that ditched me etiquette wise…and who to ask to take her spot. I would be asking someone else to be a bridesmaid, and make my other friend who is already a bridesmaid my MOH. Please offer any helpful advice. Granted I am very upset with my former MOH but more hurt that our friendship didn’t mean anything to her that she didnt feel bad for doing this to me. But at this point there is nothing I can do but move forward, so any advice as to the best way to handle this situation would be greatly appreciated.

Donna, Wedding Queen, President; Top Wedding Sites, Inc

You seem like a wonderful friend, so I can understand why you’re concerned.

As you can imagine, there’s obviously something very wrong with your friend. You really seem to care about her, so I’d step away from the issues of the wedding and continue to be her friend. Call her and keep communicating, but let her off the wedding hook. Tell her the dress is there if she changes her mind (and, of course, you’ll do whatever you can to help her to fulfill her role). I would not try to replace her — there is no need. Just go along with the wedding without her. Let her know that she’s still welcome to come as MOH or as a guest. I’d assume there is something going on in her life that she just hasn’t shared with you — yet. Maybe, by letting her know how much you care, she will share.


Thanks! I’m just concerned about contacting her still because she told me she does not want me to contact her, she doesn’t want to talk to anyone she said. But she posts online frequently that shes going out with friends. If she has made it clear she doesn’t want me to contact her anymore should I still leave the the opening for her to be part of the wedding. I told her I’d leave her spot open and she said not to because shes not going to do it and doesn’t want to talk.

Donna, Wedding Queen, President; Top Wedding Sites, Inc

Sounds like it’s her issue — not yours.

In that case, if you feel like you’ve done enough to try to figure out what has happened to the friendship, I’d let it alone. Move on with your wedding plans. If the store won’t let you return the dress, and I suspect they won’t (but check your receipt/contract) then try to sell it on Ebay after the wedding. I would still advise against trying to fill her spot — for the reasons you mentioned in your post.

You sound like a lovely, caring friend. Please don;t let her issues spoil your wedding.

Jodi R R Smith, The Mannersmith Etiquette Consulting

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding. I am so sorry your MOH decided to have this meltdown. As difficult as it is, try not to let it impact your big day.

I completely agree with all of Donna’s advice. You should not replace your MOH, you should ask if you can send back the dress, and you should still attempt to be supportive of this friend.

I wish you all the best ~

Dr. Meredith Hansen Find Love. Get Love. Keep Love.

I agree with Donna and The Mannersmith. You have a group of women in your wedding party who continue to support you as your wedding draws near. Focus on the friends who remain present and available in your life. If this friend (MOH) is important to you, I would continue to reach out. This does not have to mean you contact her daily or weekly, but from time to time send an email or text letting her know you’re thinking about her. It may also be appropriate down the road to ask if you can meet up to talk about your friendship. If she continues to resist you, then leave it alone for a while. This is an exciting time in your life and you seem to have a great network of caring people. Try to enjoy the rest of your engagement!