Planning weddings should be an exciting time for both the bride and the planner. It’s a new experience for both: The planner is excited about getting to know the bride and being part of the realization of the couple’s vision, while the bride is thrilled about her engagement and the promise of all things beautiful to come.
That said, the planning process does not always escape the drama and conflict that making some wedding decisions creates among family members and the bridal party. Family drama is the number one uninvited guest during the planning process. It brings out the best and worst in all parties involved. If not handled properly drama can put a huge damper on the planning experience as a whole.
As planners we wear all types of hats. If you’ve established trust with your client more than likely, you will also serve as a therapist of sorts, but when drama steps in, it feels more like you are a referee. While this is something that is pretty common we cannot treat every situation the same. There are a few guidelines that I believe we should always keep in mind when faced with these situations:
1. Avoid being influenced by your client’s interactions with their family members or bridal party. Use common sense at all times.
2. Don’t judge anyone based on the information provided by your client. Remember you are just an innocent bystander joining the conversation and should remain impartial.
3. Maintain a high level of professionalism at all times. Sometimes we get caught up in the drama and begin to harbor ill feelings for the person that is causing our client unnecessary stress. Remember you need to be the balance here so avoid being obvious about whose side you are on.
4. Help your client cope by diverting these conversations. Instead try chatting about wedding related topics that will immediately bring a smile to your client’s face.
5. Stay positive. At times things can get downright dirty and almost unmanageable. Don’t take anything personal and be optimistic about the outcome.
Have you had bride call you practically screaming or crying because they can’t handle the stress induced by family members or their bridal party?
How do you handle situations like these?
With a Happy Heart,
Kathy Romero is the Director of Event Planning for Preston Bailey Designs. She shares her thoughts and advice on Preston’s Blog every Thursday.