PLANNING | SOS: The Bride Wants No Hen Do

If you’re the kind of person who loves rom-com films and often finds herself sitting with a bowl of fresh popcorn in front of the TV to watch the next love story, there can be nothing more exciting than planning a hen do party for your best friend. After preparing the perfect wedding ceremony that completely matches your tastes and interests, throwing a fantastic party for a bride to be is one of the most exciting experiences you could have. We all have images from our favorite films about how a girl should celebrate her last days before the wedding, and naturally, as the best friend and bridesmaid, you want to make sure that the party will be unforgettable. You’ve been dreaming of all the sweets, the surprise cocktails and even the best places to go out together with the girls. You’ve might even been thinking about theme costumes and other exciting activities for the day – or the night. But suddenly something you had never planned for happens. The bride to be lets you know that she doesn’t want any hen do party.

How do you react?

When the future bride cancels the bachelorette party

Anger. Disappointment. Frustration. Sadness. Before you let her decision affects you, you need to understand what has pushed the bride to skip the girls’ night. And maybe, if you get to address her worries, fears or concerns, you can still create the right party for her.

She hates the idea

Let’s get to understand what a hen do party actually means. If you’re thinking of the financial obligation only, organizing such a party comes at a cost. In fact, 25% of Millennials spend $800 or more on a single party. If you’ve been involved in the planning of several in a short period of time, you’ve probably noticed that it can be difficult to make ends meet! For a lot of brides to be, it’s not the kind of expenses that they are happy to make, or even to let their friends carry – especially if they’re in the midst of planning and budgeting for their own big day. Besides, for a lot of brides to be the idea of a party where everyone is allowed to behave stupidly for an evening can be overwhelming. It can feel like an overly expensive excuse to get drunk, and if you’re not careful about your planning, this is exactly what your party could become. So, do make sure you have a chat with the future bride – and all the friends involved in the planning with you – to clarify what she genuinely dislikes about the hen do celebrations. In the end, if you can understand her specific issues, you can also make sure that the party will be tailored to her wishes and personality.

Is she just afraid of party mistakes?

Perhaps your friend worries that the party might go wrong. She doesn’t want to be disappointed or anybody to get hurt in the process. There are mistakes that you need to avoid at all cost, and it’s important to sit down with the bride to be and the guests to discuss their worst experiences at a bachelorette night. One of the most boring experiences that bachelorette guests recall and agree on is to have been stuck at a home-based party where nothing is really happening. Unless the bride has strong objections about going out, you should always try to plan something entertaining out of the house.

She doesn’t like girly themes

Nail varnish, facial masks and romantic films, if that’s your cup of tea, you’d love a lot of the bachelorette themes. But what if your bride to be friend doesn’t feel comfortable exposing her girlie side openly, maybe there’s no point in forcing her to wear a pink corset, big flowers in her hair and book a pedicure with all your best friends. But you can put a twist on the traditional bachelorette party by booking an escape room experience for your friend. Escape rooms are a lot of fun, and they’re best suited for people who love thinking games, entertainment and collaboration.

She is too stressed out

Preparing a wedding is a lot of work. It’s not only highly stressful but if the bride to be has decided to do most of the planning, it is time-demanding too. So, if you want to be a helpful friend, you might consider tuning the bachelorette night to respond to her needs. How about organizing a beauty night where you can help her relax? Aim for products that can keep her skin hydrated – stress cause the skin to feel irritated – and overnight facial masks to wake her feeling fresh. It might not be as fun as you’ve planned, but it’s the best way to support your friend.

Make it part of her wedding prep

Instead of dealing with high stress, your future bride can be struggling with the actual preps of her wedding day. You might not be able to plan the wedding for her, but you can help with some decisions. If she hasn’t yet decided on a caterer or a menu for the special day, you could plan the bachelorette evening around tasting a few menu options, for example. Similarly, you can also organize an evening together to help her pick a color palette for the venue, a theme, or even the music for the first dance. A bachelorette celebration doesn’t have to be all about going out and getting drunk!

She doesn’t want to embarrass herself

Some people are happy parading in the streets with a bridal veil and attract the attention of bystanders. Others are too shy to enjoy the experience. Maybe your friend is refusing a bachelorette night out because she is worried she might embarrass herself. She finds the attention overwhelming and disturbing. For some future brides, the hen do is about sharing a moment with best friends and having privileged time together. While a stay-at-home party may not be suitable for most future brides, planning an elegant afternoon tea party can be a nice compromise for a shy girl friend. After all, who needs music and drinks when you’ve got friends and cakes?

At the heart of a bachelorette night, there’s the need to respond the wishes of the bride to be. Don’t be put off when your friend rejects the idea of a hen do. Get at the bottom of her fears to design a night that is special and meaningful to her.

 

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Shafonne Myers is a certified wedding and event planner who longed for bridal inspiration that looked like her. She has created a website and magazine that brings bridal inspiration to plus size brides. She does speaking engagements educating the world about plus size brides and self confidence.

About Shafonne Myers {Editor-in-Chief}

Shafonne Myers is a certified wedding and event planner who longed for bridal inspiration that looked like her. She has created a website and magazine that brings bridal inspiration to plus size brides. She does speaking engagements educating the world about plus size brides and self confidence.