Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Always a Bridesmaid

Getting engaged is a happy and exciting time.  Your excitement is contagious and people are happy for you.  But what happens when relatives or close friends who have also been longing to get engaged and married find themselves a bridesmaid once again.  For some, your engagement may be bittersweet news.  They are happy for you, but sad for themselves.  Not surprisingly, these feelings can be common among many single women wanting to get married.  They may feel bad they aren't married yet, feel deficient in some way or as though something must be wrong with them.  Low self-esteem or depression may even be a factor.  Whatever the case, another engagement that's not their own can feel like another blow to their hopes and dreams.  So how do you navigate these emotional waters. First and foremost, remind yourself that you deserve to be happy and that your happiness does not contribute to someone else's feelings of loneliness or unhappiness.  After acknowledging this, you can decide how to best approach the situation.  Observe how your bridesmaid, we'll call her, is interacting with you.  Pay specific attention to body language and behavior changes.  If you notice she is not as talkative or more distant with you, sit down with her and have a heart to heart.  Tell her what you've observed and ask what's going on.  If she confirms your observations and confesses her bittersweet feelings, acknowledge these feelings.  Let her know that you want her to be a part of your wedding and involved in the planning (if that's the case), but also that you respect her mixed emotions.  Ask what parts in the wedding process she'll feel most comfortable with and see if you can work with it.  These are sensitive issues and being open, honest and working together is the best way to meet both your needs.

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