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Peeve The Hostess And You Are Off The Guest List!

A friend, Lindsey, and I are kind of in a pickle, and looking for a bit of advice. One of our good friends from college, Amy, is getting married, and we were both invited to the wedding as well as the bachelorette party. It’s been a while since college, but we were both excited to get the electronic invite, searched it over, and both responded the same way.

You see, we’re both pregnant. There’s no hiding it with me, but Lindsey can wear some looser clothing and looks good. But, as this is a bachelorette party hosted by someone who is still in college themselves, there’s going to be some drinking involved. The party is in three parts, first a ‘dance class’ at a place that allows no drinking, then dinner at a local hot spot, and finally finishing with ‘bar-hopping’.

Lindsey and I both responded that we’d love to go to the class and to dinner, but because of our conditions and the cost of going bar-hopping in a large city, we were both going to end our night there. Lindsey called me and suggested that, since we weren’t going drinking, that we carpool down to the class and to dinner, and I agreed to go halves on the gas. The next day we saw Amy, said we were both looking forward to her bachelorette party, and joked a little about what was going on before moving on to wedding and baby talk. All was well for about two days, then I got a phone call from the girl running this party, I’ll call her Natalie.

Natalie did not know Lindsey and I were pregnant, but she thought it was great because “now we have designated drivers to get us home at the end of the night”. I explained as politely as I could that I had no intention of going out to the bars, and didn’t want to make the half-hour drive to come back out and pick everyone up. Natalie, apparently not hearing me in the slightest, then asked if there was any way I could borrow one of the large vans from where I work, and maybe get my hands on another one Lindsey could drive. At this point I explained again that I did not want to pay cover charges to get into bars I was not going to drink in, and that I did not have the energy to stay out all night waiting for the 4 a.m. closing time so I could drive a large group home. And that there’s no way for me to get one work van, let alone two, since work vans are supposed to be used only for, suprisingly enough, work.

Natalie then went off on me, calling me selfish, spoiled, entitled, and those are just the nicer insults. She hung up on me, and I thought she just needed a cooling down period. Not twenty minutes later there’s a note sent out to all the participants. According to this note the class the group is going to only allow so many participants, and that there was such an ‘overwhelming response’ to the party that we were over that number. So she was going to have to ask two of us to go on the ‘waiting list’ and if someone dropped out of the party we’d be welcome to come. It should be no shock that the two of us asked, in this mass e-mail, to step aside were Lindsey and myself.

Now, I know how many people she said were the max for this place. I also know that this isn’t the ‘limit’ for this kind of party, and for the class she’s planning she could double our number and still be under the limit, because I held a party in the exact same location a few months back and still have the literature that lists the max number of guests per each class. And the information is up on the net, so anyone who takes the time can look it up. It says we would be welcome to come to dinner, but she wants everyone to pre-pay for three rounds of drinks, and it would be $XX per head for everyone. Even the ‘non-drinkers’ since it’s only fair we ‘do our part’. No one was going to be able to go without paying the money in advance. So to go to the dinner I’d have to buy booze for everyone else at the party except Lindsey. I have no problem paying part of the bride’s share, but I don’t see why I should be covering drinks for anyone else.

Lindsey called me, very upset, and we both realized that we had been all but disinvited from this party. And now we’re not sure what to do. Amy is still very excited about this, and has talked to us once about it, and we weren’t sure what to say to her. Do we tell her the truth, which we can prove up to a point with the e-mail Natalie sent, or do we both pretend something came up and bow out without another word? Do we pay the new entrance fee for the dinner or should we just skip the whole thing? I won’t lie, I was looking forward to this and I’m very upset as well, but I don’t want to get Amy upset, since I’m sure she’d be horrified to hear of this going on.   0730-11

What a pickle the hostess has created!   Natalie has placed an enormous burden on you and other guests with expectations that cannot be met.   But I believe in people’s innate sense of justice and perception and it would not surprise me if this email gets back to Amy via another guest or there are others who back out based on their own refusal to fund everyone else’s drinking.

Accept that you’ve been disinvited by the incredibly ungracious, petty Natalie and if Amy brings up the topic of the bachelorette party, tell her, “I’m so sorry but it appears Lindsey and I will not be able to attend after all.”    If she asks why, you can tell her honestly that you were disinvited by the hostess.   But being the graciously devious person I am, I would promptly start planning an alternate  party to honor the bride on a different weekend.  Who says that there can only be one party hosted in honor of the bride, particularly when no gifts are expected?   Make it different (geez, dancing and drinking til you keel over is so overdone by everyone and their dog…boring) , invite everyone (including Natalie), expect no money from anyone and have fun!

{ 105 comments… add one }
  • J's Mama August 1, 2011, 6:33 am

    Wow, Natalie sounds like an immature, spoiled brat. I agree with the admin. I would not only skip it, but I would plan an alternate plan, for yourself, Lindsey and Amy. Perhaps lunch and manicure and pedicure.

  • Lily G August 1, 2011, 6:42 am

    Not just immature and spoiled but petty and vindictive!

  • lkb August 1, 2011, 6:51 am

    I too like the idea of the alternate event. And in the course of that event, let it calmly slip out what happened with Natalie.
    I rather think that Amy should be told about Natalie’s behavior somehow — who knows what else she’s doing behind Amy’s back. (Of course, this needs to be graciously done.)

    Best wishes to the OP and Lindsey and their family’s and to Amy.

  • LaurenP August 1, 2011, 7:03 am

    In addition to it being rather rude to volunteer someone as ‘designated driver’ (its not fun to be the only sober person among completely smashed people, unless you get giggles from watching the smashed people think they’re utterly awesome whilst failing to even sit down properly), it is probably unsafe. At 4am, most people on a normal sleep cycle (bed between 10-12, get up 6-8ish) are very tired. Pregnancy is also very tiring from what I’ve heard. So our poor, pregnant OP is probably only slightly a safer driver than the drunk people who remained concious. Late night taxi and bus drivers tend to adjust their sleep cycles for work, so forking over some money for a cab ride is probably a safer option than forcing a tired and reluctant Mum-to-be to pick everyone up. I can understand not wanting to take the night bus – I’ve seen people be drunken, rowdy and violent on them at 11pm, and have since put away £20 emergency money on a night out for taxis etc. Or only go to pubs in tipsy walking distance.

    Natalie doesn’t sound like a particularly mature person. Hopefully she’ll grow up a bit and realise that just because she thinks things should happen one way doesn’t mean they will, and that no amount of pleading, ignoring protests, insulting people, demanding and throwing snit fits will make things go her way.

  • Harley Granny August 1, 2011, 7:28 am

    I hate Power Trips.

    I would bow out of the party as gracefully as possible. Only bringing up the true reason if pressed.
    Amy doesn’t need any added stress.

    As an alternative invite Amy to lunch with just you and Lindsey.

  • J.P. August 1, 2011, 7:50 am

    I think I would pretend the whole thing was a big misunderstanding, and Reply to All (including Amy) with the information about the class and the fact that you know the party won’t be going over the limit (I’d include a link to the relevant page of the class website.)

    I also wouldn’t pre-pay for anybody’s drinks, and if Natalie brings it up to you in person I’d explain–again, acting as if this is all a big misunderstanding–that due to your condition you’re only having water. What’s she gonna do, snatch your purse?

  • josie August 1, 2011, 7:52 am

    So they are going to have 3 rounds of drinks at dinner and ~then~ go bar hopping? I think the manicure/pedicure sane, sober event sounds way more mature and social.

  • Kimberly August 1, 2011, 7:52 am

    I think both should forward the e-mail to the bride and explain they can not attend. The OP should also tell the bride that Natalie tried to pressure her into inappropriate use of the OP’s work vans. The Bride should then tell Natalie her services are no longer required – and neither is her friendship. They should then call the venues and set up new reservations under a different name for the original party.

  • Aje August 1, 2011, 7:53 am

    Admin is a genius! And I’m not nearly as kind as you two, if Amy asked me why I couldn’t go I would TELL her.

  • Clair Seulement August 1, 2011, 8:06 am

    I would be interested in hearing a bachelorette party story that *didn’t* involve some sort of etiquette fiasco. These things are tacky by *design*, IMHO. The OP should consider herself lucky to get a free pass on this.

  • Jo August 1, 2011, 8:17 am

    Why not respond (cheerfully) that you’ll go ahead and attend the class as “observers” to cheer everyone on? It if works out there’s space, fine. If not, you’ll be happy to watch the class. Then, once you get there, it will likely be obvious there IS room for you. I gather everyone is paying their own way at the dinner, drinks, and club cover charges? What are the 3x drink charges for – the restaurant or the club? If the restaurant, you could order fancy non-alcoholic drinks and at least get some benefit. Another question is how well you know other members of the group. If you know several and this would be a unique opportunity to reconnect with them and the bride, I’d find a way to make it work. If it’s really just the bride, she’s going to be spread pretty thin and maybe getting with her later or planning a separate event would be best.

  • lnelson1218 August 1, 2011, 8:22 am

    Would love an update from the OP.

    Natalie is the spoiled and entitled one. First not only assuming that you would be the driver for the whole party since she heard you weren’t drinking but all but arranging for you and Lindsay to use company vans to chauffer the group. There could be others in the group who either might only do the dinner and dance class or still others who will meet up at the bar-hopping segment.

    I’d bring it up to Amy and tell her that Natalie is trying to disinvite you and why.

    I had a friend who had a birthday/divorce being finalized celebration. It started with dinner and then was going to move onto a few nightclubs. I went to the dinner portion and then went home. I know that others were going to meet up at the club. As far as I know no one was slighted.

  • Gracie C. August 1, 2011, 8:23 am

    Ok – wait! Everyone has to pay up in advance for 3 ROUNDS(?!) of drinks?! So, if ten people are going, each guest is planning to have 30 drinks each throughout the night? Somehow I doubt it. I see Natalie pocketing a lot of money that isn’t hers at the end of this evening.

    I have a feeling a lot more people than Lindsey and the OP are going to be offended by this. Every bachelorette I’ve ever been to has been pay your own way, and chip in an amount to cover the bride. I can’t imagine being told I had to buy three rounds of drinks. Um…no. You want to get hammered – you can shell out the money yourself. I’ll be over here with my free refills of gingerale, thanks.

  • livvy August 1, 2011, 8:38 am

    I love how she called the OP entitled and spoiled….everything that she herself was being! Amazing. How completely rude. Love Admin’s suggestion, I’m sure the bride would be so honored to have another party thrown in her honor.

  • Otter August 1, 2011, 8:46 am

    It sounds as if you and Amy were invited just to provide the transportation. When Natalie realized you wouldn’t accommodate she got mad. I would definitely let the bride know why you two are not attending her party, then plan an alternate gathering. (I’ll bet you 2 aren’t the only ones angry).

  • Shannon August 1, 2011, 8:47 am

    I got married earlier this year. If the hostess of my bachelorette was being mean to my dear friends, you better believe I’d want to hear about it.

    It sounds like Natalie has “Preggos Are Automatic DD’s!” syndrome, which is pretty common especially among young people. And it sounds like she felt she hit upon a great idea (“Hey! The preggos can drive, so everyone else can drink!”) and when it didn’t shake out that way she lost the plot. Anyone who thinks pregnant women can stay out til 4 am is clearly suffering from a logic deficit.

    Next time the bride brings up the bachelorette, I would just say something like, “Well unfortunately we will be unable to attend. There was some awkwardness with the hostess because we are unable to stay out until 4 am to serve as designated drivers, and she has disinvited us from the party and told us not to attend the dance lesson. However, we’d love to have you over for brunch in a week or two….what day is best for you?”

  • LonelyHound August 1, 2011, 8:51 am

    Even as a non-pregnant guest I would have bowed out of the party. I do not really drink and when I do it is maybe one drink so the rest of my money would be considered community property. I would have told Natalie that I could not make it and then called Amy and said that I could not attend the bachelorette party but would love to take her out to lunch with a few of our other friends (which is something along the lines of what the Admin said)

    In your case I would do the separate party. If Amy asked I would say that although you would love to spend the evening with her Natalie put such constraints on the non-alcoholic parts of the party and a requirement to pay a certain amount for drinking at the dinner that you did not feel comfortable attending. I would show her the email and, being me, definitely leave in the part where you were disinvited. Then cherrily say that a bunch of you would like to treat her to lunch, bowling, a spa day, etc. My not be the height of etiquette, but deliberate shunning of people because they do not bow to your whims makes me upset.

  • Xtina August 1, 2011, 8:52 am

    Oh, I think Amy needs to eventually be told about Natalie’s petty and vindictive behavior. I’m sure the other party invitees are probably wondering what the reason for the “rules” are that Natalie has suddenly enacted, and if the OP does not mention it to Amy, then someone else surely will–not to mention that if Natalie was immature enough to throw a fit and uninvite the OP and Lindsey to the party, she will NOT be above telling Amy something completely false about how come they are not attending the party, thereby possibly harming the friendship. I would speak to Amy directly to give my regrets, and I’m sure she would ask why they weren’t coming–in which case, I would calmly tell her what Natalie has done.

    Another party sounds like a great idea–of course they would want to spend some time with their friend before her big day, and another party would be a gracious way to do it (and rise above the petty Natalie)–making it something that everyone can afford and participate in.

  • gramma dishes August 1, 2011, 9:10 am

    I’m with lkb on this one. I think Amy should know. The only difference is that I think Amy should know now, not later. If Natalie is behaving this way now, who knows what else she’ll do prior to or during the wedding/reception?

    If Amy truly wants the OP and Lindsey to participate in her celebrations, and it sounds like she does, she deserves to know what has happened or she may just think they are simply not interested enough to be involved which clearly is not the case.

    Since they’ve apparently already talked to her about how excited they were about the upcoming events, the bride may be able to figure at least part of it out for herself. But in any case, I know that if I were the bride, I’d want to know what’s going on!

  • Saucygirl August 1, 2011, 9:13 am

    I love admins advice of an alternative. And I agree that other girls will start to complain. Natalie wants everyone to prepay for 3 drink rounds for everyone? Did I read that right? Because that would mean you are looking at each person drinking anywhere from 15 to 60 drinks! I can’t imagine most of the guests finding that a necessary expense.

  • Lizajane August 1, 2011, 9:20 am

    I also like the idea of another party. But you could also go to dinner, I assume it’s at a public restaurant. You and Lindsay could each pay for a round as soon as you arrive, and when Natalie starts mouthing off, say, “Oh, we already paid the hostess/server/bartender for our rounds.”

    Actually, since you know the group isn’t over the limit, you could just go to the dance class also. What’s Natalie going to say? “Noooo you can’t be here?” Let her show her own hind parts. Guaranteed she will.

  • Chicken August 1, 2011, 9:29 am

    It’s a really tough spot the OP and her friend were put in. Don’t say anything and the bride is left hurt and confused as to why her friends didn’t come to her party. On the other hand if you approach the bride and tell her what happened then you’re speaking badly about someone behind their back.

    If it were me I wouldnt say anything to the bride, when she asks other party goers why the OP and her friend aren’t present I would hope that person would tell them about how they were “bumped” from the guest list. I would only tell the bride what happened if she asked me point blank why I didn’t attend. Then I think it’s okay, cause if she asks it’s not tattling or speaking ill of another- it’s just simple polite honesty.

  • Cupcake August 1, 2011, 9:39 am

    I’m glad I’m not friends with Natalie. Personally, I’d let the the Bride know; after all, if someone I considered a friend was treating my other friends like this and spoiling my own bachelorette party just to be a witch, I’d certainly want to know about it. Don’t make a fuss over it, but subtly mention it so she can at least decide whether to act on it.

  • jen a. August 1, 2011, 9:43 am

    Natalie needs to grow up. Bachelorette’s are a chance for everyone to get to know eachother, and those who aren’t partaking (for whatever reason – pregnancy, personal beliefs or health) want to have fun too. They don’t necessarily want to drive everyone else around.

    I do kind of feel like the OP should explain the situation to Amy as tactfully as possible. I’m sure Amy will already realize what’s going on after reading the invite. I just worry that Natalie would frame it in a way that makes the OP and Lindsay seem like they’re being spoilsports. I know the bride is usually under a lot of stress and just needs a fun night out, but if I were her (and maybe I’m just projecting my feelings on the matter), I would want to know.

    I love E-Dames’ idea of an alternative event, but I think it should be handled with caution. It could come across as passive-aggressive and just anger that hot-head even more.

    Either way, I’d love to hear how this turns out, OP! Good luck to you!

  • Jay August 1, 2011, 9:59 am

    Amy deserves to be horrified. Why lie to her just to spare Natalie? Amy should know what her “friend” is doing.

  • Margo August 1, 2011, 10:02 am

    Wow! Natalie sounds like a rather nasty piece of work!

    Was the note sent round as a group e-mail? I wonder whether one way of dealing with it would be to reply saying that you are anxious not to disappoint the bride by missing the party, as she’s mentioned it to you, but that happily, it seems as though there may have been a misunderstanding about the class, as you’ve just helped organise another event there, and it appears that the max. number for a class is (x), so could Natalie confirm that it won’t be necessary for anyone to drop out, or alternatively, if the venue is imposing a lower limit on this occassion, and as you aren’t able to participate in the bar-hopping, is there anyone who’d be willing to volunteer to drop out of the class (and join for the meal & bar-hop) so that as many of Bride’s friends as possible can participate in a part of the evening? That would give other guests the opportunity to volunteer rather than assuming you will drop out. (If some of the other particpants are still students, they may actually welcome the opportunity to save a little money by not paying for the class…!)

    So far as the meal is concerned that’s trickier – do you know whether the pre-pay part is down to Natalie or to the venue? If you’re sure it’s the former, it may be that you could add something to say “as you know, I’m pregnant so won’t be drinking – can you confirm the price of the meal without any drinks pre-pay – I’m more than happy to add to a kitty to cover Bride’s meal & drinks – would you like to do that separately or does your calculation for the meal include this?”

    This would leave the door open for Natalie to back down gracefully

  • --E August 1, 2011, 10:02 am

    I completely agree with Admin: host your own, more reasonable get-together.

    However, I disagree about inviting Natalie. Natalie has demonstrated that she is a nasty little brat. Inviting her to the alternate party runs the risk that she might show up. I have little doubt that she’s the sort who might then try to make it all about her, and how awful you two are to have gone behind her back and set up this party.

    Leave Natalie off the guest list as you would anyone whose company isn’t desirable.

  • Angela August 1, 2011, 10:24 am

    This is a case of someone who wants to have a drinking party for a good cause, not someone who is honoring a bride-to-be. This evening might well end up such that it’s not a happy memory after all. I agree, do something on your own for your friend. If you feel compelled for some reason to invite Natalie (I can’t imagine why) make it clear that this is alcohol-free. The Natalies of this world tend to find that a deal-breaker.

  • Angela August 1, 2011, 10:28 am

    I might add that you don’t need to explain yourself (other than stating you are pregnant) to someone putting you in a position like Natalie. As Miss Manners says, when you give people specific reasons you are giving them grounds for argument. “It’s just not feasible. I hope you girls have a great time without us” is all you need to say.

  • Ali August 1, 2011, 10:36 am

    I agree that I would want to hear about it if someone hosting a party for me was treating my friends rudely. I would definitely tell Amy what had transpired.

  • badkitty August 1, 2011, 10:48 am

    I wonder how the heck Natalie was planning a drunken event and failed to have transportation at the end of the evening sorted? I mean, shouldn’t she either have a car service lined up or a DD on-call who would be napping while everyone else was out? (I have non-drinking friends who actually volunteer to do this all the time, it’s sort of a standing offer so long as the drunks pay for gas and we generally pay the driver in addition and even buy breakfast if possible)

    Clearly Natalie is a poor friend to Amy, if she can treat Amy’s other friends so shabbily. I say that Amy needs to know, though not if it can’t be done without a big tattletail phone call… when you bow out she’ll immediately ask you why and it can all unfold from there. True, Amy doesn’t need more stress right now, but she also doesn’t need to find out after her wedding that the Natalies of her wedding party were ruining things for the rest of her friends. A bride wants to know that other people had a good time too.

  • Ashley August 1, 2011, 10:55 am

    I would have sent back an email (reply all, so no one thinks you are making it up) that said “I was so excited about the dance class that I was looking at their website, and it seems like their limits would accomodate us just fine, isn’t that great?” Then forward the page of the website that listed class sizes…

  • kudeebee August 1, 2011, 11:12 am

    Admin is nicer than I would be. You and Lindsay should forward the email to Amy with a note that says something like “Looks like I am not invited to your bachelorette anymore. Lindsay and I would love to get together with you another time and celebrate. Talk to you later.”

  • Calli Arcale August 1, 2011, 11:14 am

    Wow! I am no longer upset about what happened at my bachlorette party, which was to be a low-key nonalcoholic affair until some of my friends’ moms crashed it. They had meant well, and it was still fun, and I don’t hold it against them — their only sin was overexuberance, and at least they got it out of the system before any of the other kids in my bunch got married. 😉 This, though, this is appalling. It’s sort of a friend-of-Bridezilla. The amount of presumption this woman displayed is really astounding. “You’re asking to skip the drinking because you’re preggers, so you will of course be our DD! And you can borrow vans from someone who is a complete stranger to me so we can all get drunk and then throw up in them, right? What, you can’t? You won’t? You what??? The nerve!!!!”

    Amazing. I keep telling myself not to be surprised at how far people will go, but I never stop being surprised anyway.

  • Serenity August 1, 2011, 11:30 am

    I would definitely tell Amy about it, and in fact, would have called as soon as I got that email!! I see no reason to “cover” for Natalie’s bad behavior, and while Amy may be upset, better for her to be upset at Natalie’s behavior, than for her to be upset that 2 close friends didn’t come to her party because something else “came up”. And since there is no guarantee that Amy will somehow find out about Natalie’s bad behavior through someone else attending, she may very well feel slighted by her friends, never knowing it was Natalie that caused the problem. If it was me, I’d want to know right away so I could handle the situation appropriately.

  • ellesee August 1, 2011, 11:40 am

    Regardless if I am the bride, birthday girl, or guest of honor, if the hostess who is throwing a party for me is being rude to my friends/guests, I would want to hear about it. I rather know now than later, where I could be hurt why a few of my friends decided to bow out lastminute without an excuse. And also to know who I should watch out for in the friend circle–potential backstabbers and trashtalkers and bullies. Amy, I believe, should be in the know.
    There has been situations that I’ve had before where I wish somebody told me earlier so guests would not feel left out. Brides aren’t always delicate flowers, and this would not as stressful as, for example, a delayed cake delivery or ruined bridal dress. This situation could be remedied very quickly with Amy overwriting Natalie’s agenda. Just be tactful and do not point fingers.

  • B~ August 1, 2011, 11:46 am

    I would want to know if my friends were being treated so poorly.

    As the bride, I would then politely inform Natalie that the two women were exempt from the “rules” and they were more than welcome to all parts of the party that they desired to attend.

  • Teapot August 1, 2011, 11:56 am

    Good heavens. I certainly hope the lovely Natalie is not part of the wedding party. I can just imagine how much she would demand of the bride and the rest of the wedding party. Surely the bride knows Natalie well enough to know what a diva she is. If she doesn’t, it might be a kindness to let her know what’s going on with the party so she can be prepared for the kind of tantrums that might come on the big day and take action to nip it in the bud right now.

  • Ally L August 1, 2011, 12:04 pm

    “Next time the bride brings up the bachelorette, I would just say something like, “Well unfortunately we will be unable to attend. There was some awkwardness with the hostess because we are unable to stay out until 4 am to serve as designated drivers, and she has disinvited us from the party and told us not to attend the dance lesson. However, we’d love to have you over for brunch in a week or two….what day is best for you?””

    This is a perfect way to explain to the bride what went on. In trying to “protect” the bride, you would end up also protecting the nasty entitled Natalie. Even worse, you possibly risk hurting the bride’s feelings if you suddenly change your plans and skip her party. Give her the truth; I don’t know of any ettiquette where you have to lie to protect someone’s feelings. Being gracious, and extending the bride another invition to hang out, I think more than covers you.

  • Angel August 1, 2011, 12:18 pm

    It is nice to spare the bride the added stress, but this is too over-the-top. She needs to know.

  • Erica August 1, 2011, 12:19 pm

    If my maid of honor or one of my bridesmaids treated any of my friends (or even acquaintances) like that then I would want to know immediately. I can gladly say that I can trust my close friends never to behave that way, but IF for some reason they did then I would want to know and apologize on their behalf… and I would make sure that my friends were invited to the event that I wanted them to attend.

    Better to create some awkwardness that lasts a short while than something than get out of hand after the fact and make lasting and hurtful situation.

  • Hollanda August 1, 2011, 12:44 pm

    My response would initially have been: “Hire work vans? I’m sorry, that would not be possible. Stay awake until 4am and then pick up drunk people from bars? I’m sorry, due to my condition and that of my friend, we will not be able to accommodate your request.” I don’t think I would tell B2B what had happened until after the wedding unless I had to…the words “shoot the messenger” come to mind! I would also be tempted to reply to all on that email and explain that pregnant ladies get tired quickly and need rest, and staying awake until stupid times in the morning would not be good for either M2B or baby. Maybe if B2B’s more considerate friends had an idea of Natalie’s expectations, they might reconsider the idea of being involved in such a selfish plan that clearly pays no consideration towards the needs of individuals other than Natalie.

    In addition, Natalie sounds way too immature to be planning a party of this nature and clearly needs to grow up and cop on to reality. I personally would be really offended if I were in OP’s situation…I’d feel as though someone I barely knew was trying to take advantage of the situation. I also would not attend any part of the party and arrange something more cosy with Amy which doesn’t involve drinking alcohol until one’s liver becomes pickled. What’s fun about waking up with a stonking hangover the next morning anyway?

  • maggieprincess August 1, 2011, 1:10 pm

    Again, as someone said earlier, yet another dull drinking party for no apparent reason other than getting drunk, even though you are supposedly honoring and congratulating someone on a milestone–but let’s not actually honor anyone here.

    There isn’t anything else I can say that others haven’t already said, except one. I have had this happen to me before, so I know of which I am speaking. When a mass email goes out, and it says that some have been disinvited (or whatever crass comments are put forth), where does everyone else go? Is there no one there to stand up and say “hey, what are you thinking?” or “this isn’t right” –??

    I’ve been gained up on a few times by folks like this and everyone just sits there, looking around at the wall or whatever. I think the worst etiquette problem by far is when we just sit and let others treat people poorly–but hey, I guess that’s really what America has always done through history, hasn’t it?

  • Abby August 1, 2011, 1:15 pm

    One thing I’ve noticed in the comments-I do not think Natalie meant everyone had to pay for 3 drinks for everyone- just three drinks total. I know she said three rounds, but I think she just meant three rounds for one person. Depending on where they were planning on going, that would be anywhere from $10 to $45 a person. I am not sure the logic behind this because usually the bar tab gets included with the food on the final bill. I agree with whoever said Natalie is trying to make a buck off the evening, especially since she’s pressuring non drinkers to pay up.

    Normally, I would say not to bother the bride about this, as it may put her in the awkward position where she feels like she has to referee or scold a close friend. But in this case, I’m thinking more than just OP and Lindsey are going to get excluded (the first non-pregnant woman who balks at spending $20+ on Natalie’s prepay scheme, or doesn’t want to stay out until 4 am), and the Bride may end up thinking that no one cared about her enough to come celebrate- especially if Natalie is there to tell her version of the events. OP needs to tell Amy what is going on, and perhaps reiterate that she still wants Amy to enjoy herself and not feel like she has to get in the middle of it, and that OP and Lindsey will celebrate with Amy in their own way.

  • Another Laura August 1, 2011, 1:21 pm

    @ Clair Seulement -my “bachelorette party” consisted of me and three married girl friends (and the small child of one of them) going out to a restaurant-where we did NOT drink-talking about marriage and all that it entails (but not loud enough for people at neighboring tables to be bothered by it) and then going back to my apartment where I was given some “wedding night” gifts and watching a wedding themed movie. We are not really drinkers, so this worked for us.

  • Lizajane August 1, 2011, 1:28 pm

    Actually, in my previous post, I should have said that you and your friend could pay for a drink for the bride.

    I really like JPs idea. I defenitely would go to the class and to dinner. Mostly because it sounds like this is something you’ve been looking forward to, but also because I would want to watch Natalie’s head explode.

  • Hollanda August 1, 2011, 1:57 pm

    It wouldn’t bother me that people around me were drinking…TBH, I get so dehydrated that water/orange juice is all I want/need at the moment. Just the idea of bar-hopping exhausts me………!!!!! How thoughtless!!!!!!!!!! Since when DF and I marry next year, our baby will be 10 mths old, I doubt my “hen party” (UK equivalent) will involve too much in the way of alcohol, since I will be more concerned with whether baby is OK and happy etc with babysitter (possibly his Grandpa!) than getting drunk! Kids + alcohol don’t mix……………………………………people grow up and move on, and IMO anyone who thinks the only way to have a good time is by getting rat-faced has a seeeeeeeeeerious problem!!!

  • Jojo August 1, 2011, 1:59 pm

    Who in their right mind would want to spend the night with Natalie, particularly when she’s playing hostess?!
    I’d be tempted to reply to all and ‘accidentally’ CC the bride in at the same time. I’d say that you’d love to attend the meal regardless of missing out on the fun at the dance hall ( and that you’ll come and watch from the side as JP suggested!) but will not put money towards anything but your meal and the bride’s. I’d be tempted to lay it on thickly that you’re sure there are lots of ladies in the group who will be keen to avoid having to spend too much money, what with the recession and all, and suggest that another venue for the meal might be appropriate if you all have to put in money for something you don’t wish to purchase!
    Honestly, I’d go for the idea of a nice lunch and mani-pedi with the bride another time though. Natalie just sound like more bother than she’s worth – you’ll save money by avoiding the night out and can put it towards a lovely outfit for the wedding itself.

  • Mike B. August 1, 2011, 2:02 pm

    Natalie may be the nominal host (doesn’t sound like she’s contributing anything above and beyond making the arrangements), but she is not the guest of honor and does not have the authority to disinvite people Amy expects to attend. And Amy is the guest of honor, not the host; she should not be put in an awkward position because her friend is a boor.

    The OP and her friend should privately confirm that the group is still within attendance limits (to give Natalie the benefit of the doubt), then appear at the start of the event without comment. If Natalie makes an unnecessary scene and embarrasses Amy, it’s her business. My guess is that she’ll let it go, since to do otherwise would draw attention to the fact that she lied to try to exclude people from the event for petty reasons.

  • Xtina August 1, 2011, 2:19 pm

    @ Maggieprincess re your comment: “…. I think the worst etiquette problem by far is when we just sit and let others treat people poorly–but hey, I guess that’s really what America has always done through history, hasn’t it?”

    Is that supposed to be a test to see if anyone will do exactly that—sit by and let others treat people poorly? Either way, I’m taking the bait—your comment deriding the entire county of the United States is uncalled for, rude, and untruthful.

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