Help! MOH, I will be 1 month postpartum for the wedding. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 02-08-2009, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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OK, so I didn't know how to title this and I didn't know which folder this topic should be in. My best friend, who has been engaged for a couple of yrs now, asked me yesterday to be her MOH for her wedding. Here is the situation, yesterday BEFORE she asked me, I told her that I am 16 wks pg with baby #3. I am sure it caught her by surprise, but she still asked me to be her MOH. She has two other women in mind to ask as bridesmaids (which she hasn't done yet). I accepted. She is my best friend, if it were anyone else, seriously, I would say, "Sorry, I can't do it." So, I am so excited for her, BUT I am kind of freaking out inside too, b/c I WANT to be an awesome MOH for her, but I'm questioning my ability to juggle all of these different things. Luckily, my then 5 and 4 yr old will probably not attend the wedding and just stay with my in laws (who are in the same city as my friend, she's an hr away from us). So, at least I won't have to worry about two other kids.

So, here are the details. Her wedding is Labor Day wknd (first wknd of Sept), my baby is due the end of July (25th). Obviously, I'll need to throw her a bridal shower. I am thinking if I can do that by early July or even late June (my other two arrived on their own 6 days prior to my edd), that will be a huge wt off of my shoulders to have her shower taken care of before the baby arrives. I don't know if she will want to do a bachelorette type of party, my gut feeling is no, and I know a lot of women skip that now or just do a spa day instead.

So, now my other freak out is that I will obviously have a 4-6 wk old newborn while being her MOH at her wedding. First of all, the dress, I am already facing the fact that I am not going to look great, no matter WHAT the dress looks like, just b/c most women still look kind of pregnant at 1 mo postpartum and that includes me. I think she will be flexible, she hasn't even picked her dress yet, so I am going to wait and let her figure out her own gown (she's taking her mom) before even bringing up her expectations for bridesmaid gowns. I honestly don't think she will be too picky, luckily, she isn't the bridezilla type. HOWEVER, how the heck am I supposed to nurse gracefully in a bridesmaid gown? Doesn't that mean I'll pretty much have to sneak off to a private area every time I need to nurse and strip off half of my gown? Her wedding is going to be pretty formal. I've asked some other friends (who don't know my other friend) about this who think I am pretty much nuts and should just not do it at all. However, this is the ONLY person in the world that I would ever want to be a bridesmaid for. For anyone else, I would flat out tell them, "No, I'm sorry, but I won't be able to do this for you."

So, if any of you have been in my situation before, either as a bridesmaid and/or the bride, can you please share your experiences and if you have any good advice, I'd appreciate that too. Thanks!
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#2 of 15 Old 02-08-2009, 05:29 PM
 
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I think that you are doing a great job thinking this through. I am sure that you can elicit the help of the bridesmaids to help you with the tasks that are just too difficult. You can just put the baby in a sling and you will be just fine. Make lots of lists, do as much as possible before the baby is born and ask for help when you need it. It is you that your friend wants so anything that you can do is sufficient. I'm sure that you can find a gown that can be adapted/altered for nursing. If not, you can wear the dress for the ceremony and the pictures and change into something more nursing friendly for the reception.
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#3 of 15 Old 02-08-2009, 05:30 PM
 
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Definitely do the shower early like you're planning.

Does your friend have children? If not make sure she understands that your baby will need your attention throughout the wedding day. If she doesn't have kids there may be many things she just hasn't thought of.

Dress-wise go for a two piece dress. That will be easier to fit and easier to nurse in. You're going to have to guess at your size and the shop won't be able to do alterations until the last minute. Depending on the style of the dress (and the temperament of your baby) you may be able to nurse with a coordinating wrap for modesty.

Since you're the MOH it wouldn't look strange if the other bridesmaids are wearing different dressed from yours. Is it a formal wedding? Perhaps they could wear dresses and you could wear a skirt of the same fabric and a wrap style blouse/top that would be nursing friendly.

Mom to (5) (9)
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#4 of 15 Old 02-08-2009, 06:45 PM
 
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Honestly? I wouldn't do it. With two other kids I'd be lucky to even attend a wedding one month postpartum, let alone be in the wedding party.
Is everyone okay with nursing-comfortable dresses? Is she okay with the fact that you might need to duck out halfway through the ceremony if the baby is crying? I would ask to be a regular bridesmaid maybe and let someone else take over the MOH responsibilities. Stress is definitely not something I need postpartum, especially with hormones flying everywhere.
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#5 of 15 Old 02-08-2009, 07:07 PM
 
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I would probably gracefully give her the chance to back out and choose another MOH, but if I was certain she wanted me, and understood my limitations then I would still do it.

Perhaps you might consider writing a letter or having a conversation in the next few days. Tell her how honored you are that she wanted you to be her MOH and that it means the world to you that she thought of you.
Then let her know that you understand that your news was unexpected, and that she had already planned on asking you before knowing about the pregnancy.

You can tell her every single concern that you shared with us here: that you will only be 4 weeks postpartum at the time of the wedding, that pre-fitting for a dress will be impossible and you don't think you will be looking your best at one moth PP. Mention your concerns about you baby, that he/she will need to be with you at the wedding, and that you will need to be able to breastfeed easily. and possibly every hour!

Then leave the ball in her court. After you've shared all your concerns you could let her know that you are willing and happy to be her MOH, but you would like her to take a few days and really think it over and be sure that all of this is okay. Let her know that you will not be offended if she decides to choose someone else, that you are honored to have been asked but want her to have the best wedding possible.
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#6 of 15 Old 02-08-2009, 10:16 PM
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I'd say thanks but no thanks, still help with the shower and do all the best friend stuff but let someone else do the official day of stuff. I was moh with my sis when my guy was older but still nursing and it was tough. Can you read a poem, do a toast, be involved in other ways?
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#7 of 15 Old 02-09-2009, 12:45 AM
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in regards to the bridesmaid gown, i recommend getting something with an empire waist and then perhaps having it made for you so that it's nursing-friendly. my sister only wanted a certain shade of fabric for all of her BMs, and the style didn't matter to her. well, it has to be a certain shade of fabric, kind of fabric, and length of dress. so even though my baby will be 6 mo along at the wedding, i will nurse him and i wanted it to work.

so, the agreement is that i get to sit during the service (it is a full catholic mass and this is normal for that), and i had the dress altered to fit our needs. i bought the dress at david's bridal, btw, and then had it altered for nursing by a friend who is a tailor.
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#8 of 15 Old 02-09-2009, 01:28 AM
 
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Will you have someone available to hold the baby during the actual ceremony?

What kind of ceremony is it? Is it likely to be long (Such as a Catholic wedding with a full Mass) or short (like, ok, the parents and grandparents want something formal for good pictures, we said the words, we're DONE NOW) or something in between?

What will be the accommodations at the venue? Where DH and I got married, there were two huge dressing rooms, one for the bride's side, one for the groom's side (and this was at a restaurant... though it used to be an embassy). Had any of my wedding party been in the same situation, she could have nursed the baby just minutes before going out to participate in the ceremony with no trouble at all. OTOH, if you have to do all your getting ready somewhere else, then travel to the venue, that may be a bit more difficult.

You may want to think about getting a custom sling made in the same fabric as the dress, or at least the same color. That will make you feel less self-conscious about slinging the baby during the reception (but I'd definitely want someone else holding baby for the ceremony if it was me).

See if you can get measurements taken when you're starting to show (which is probably about now, since you've had two other kids!). That will probably be a good guide for where you will be at a month PP. Also, look for a good piece of industrial underwear... the nice thing about that PP pudge is that it's highly flexible, and you can just stuff it in to look good for pics and things. Yeah, you won't be comfortable, but hey. ;-) I've got a great one I wore for my own wedding and still use for a lot of special occasions that's like a pair of shaping underwear attached to the bottom of a bustier. It doesn't go over the boobs at all, so no nursing issues; it hooks up the front for easy access; and it has hooks in the crotch, so you can go to the bathroom without taking it off. Works like a charm.

There are parts of this that will suck, but it sounds like you'll be really glad you did this for your friend years from now, and you'll probably have forgotten the really sucky parts. ;-) Writing her a letter as a PP described may be a good idea, just so she really KNOWS where you're at with this; stress that you really, REALLY want to do this for her, and you are NOT looking for excuses, but you know you won't be "full strength" as it were, so you want her to know what's up. And maybe she'll decide she wants someone else to stand with her, which would be disappointing... but better than damaging your friendship over her expecting things of you that aren't feasible, right? And probably, she won't; she'll just revise her expectations right now, while it's all far off and she hasn't gotten too terribly attached to one perfect vision of her day.
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#9 of 15 Old 02-09-2009, 01:43 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoebird View Post
in regards to the bridesmaid gown, i recommend getting something with an empire waist and then perhaps having it made for you so that it's nursing-friendly. my sister only wanted a certain shade of fabric for all of her BMs, and the style didn't matter to her. well, it has to be a certain shade of fabric, kind of fabric, and length of dress. so even though my baby will be 6 mo along at the wedding, i will nurse him and i wanted it to work.

so, the agreement is that i get to sit during the service (it is a full catholic mass and this is normal for that), and i had the dress altered to fit our needs. i bought the dress at david's bridal, btw, and then had it altered for nursing by a friend who is a tailor.
I agree with everything here..
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#10 of 15 Old 02-09-2009, 04:00 AM
 
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Does she have kids? If so, did she breastfeed them?

I would sit down and have a heart to heart with her, and tell her how you are totally willing to try to do whatever it takes to still stand up for her as her matron of honor, but you want to be sure she knows what that would be like and give her the opportunity to choose someone else. I would tell her that I want to be there for her more than anything else, but that I also don't want to take attention away from her or "ruin" her big day in any way because there will be additional demands on me.

I don't think I would be able to do it. I think it shows a lot that you really want to give it a try. I'm sure for many women it would be possible, so I'm not trying to be super-negative. I would just hate to see you try so, so hard to make it all work and then have her ultimately be disappointed and angry with you because you can't help her make 200 floral arrangements and 50 pew boughs the day before the wedding, or you have to keep leaving the reception or ceremony or photo session because your baby is crying, or that you "disappear" a month before the wedding because you have the baby and are then unavailable for two weeks or more when she "needs you the most." KWIM? It might end up being a big disappointment for both of you to try to make it work. So I would really have a heart to heart with her and see what she wants to do.

Congrats on your pregnancy!!
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#11 of 15 Old 02-09-2009, 10:26 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks ladies. No, my friend does not have any children and neither does her DH, so she doesn't really know what is involved with having a newborn and how often they BF during those early months. I'm going to give her a call maybe on Sunday to let her know my concerns and to make sure we are on the same page. If we aren't, then I'll just tell her that maybe she should ask someone else to be her MOH, b/c I don't want to disappoint her by not fulfilling my duties to her expectation. Oh and yes she is Catholic, I have no idea if she is having a full mass or not (probably not, since her DH is not Catholic, and when I got married we were told that if both of us weren't Catholic, they wouldn't do a full mass, which was fine by us). I'm kind of hoping, baby or not, that she doesn't do a full mass, b/c I have sat through some of those before and it is just really, really long!
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#12 of 15 Old 02-09-2009, 11:11 AM
 
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I was my BFF's MOH when my firstborn was five or six weeks old. I wasn't a great MOH, but part of that was that we lived 2000 miles apart at the time. The dress was okay - they ordered it HUGE (as in, told me to give my measurements at X months and then the shop added on a few sizes) but I went to a seamstress shop at a few weeks postpartum and they took it in in less than a week. Later, my mother-in-law retrofit some hooks onto the straps (spaghetti straps - ugh) so that I could BF without taking the dress off, though I still did need to find private places to go. I wore a corset from my own wedding under the bridesmaid dress to pull things together and ... well, spaghetti straps and nursing? The 2000 mile distance made the other non-parental bridesmaids choose the dress along with the non-parental bride. The biggest help at the wedding was that, along with my husband, my mother and stepfather and mother-in-law were also there to pass the baby amongst themselves.

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#13 of 15 Old 02-09-2009, 02:16 PM
 
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One of my friends was in my wedding party when her baby was about 1 1/2 - 2 mo PP. It was difficult, I won't lie. And I was young and unaware of what a new mom needed. However, a room was available for her to pump in (she did not bring the baby, her choice). Unfortunately, she decided to manually pump (as in, using her hands -- again, we were both pretty inexperienced with everything) and that didn't work well for her. My mother made ALL of the gowns, including hers, and they were empire-waist style, so they looked pretty flattering on all the girls. There was a break between the wedding and reception and that allowed her some time.
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#14 of 15 Old 02-09-2009, 03:25 PM
 
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I would decline. You never know if you will have a complicated pregnancy, delivery, and/or recovery. I was exhausted the last two months of my pregnancy, and I had a really painful recovery that had me bed ridden for almost 2 weeks. I also had an extremely high needs baby who had to nurse/suck around the clock, and he didn't let anyone hold him but me. It would have completely stressed me out to worry about taking care of him on top of all the wedding festivities. That's my two cents. Good luck, whatever you decide.
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#15 of 15 Old 02-09-2009, 04:44 PM
 
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First off, congratulations on your pregnancy! :

Quote:
Originally Posted by zoebird View Post
in regards to the bridesmaid gown, i recommend getting something with an empire waist and then perhaps having it made for you so that it's nursing-friendly.
This is what I was going to suggest. I also suggest, for your own comfort and peace of mind, wearing a girdle-- either one specifically designed for the postpartum period (like the belly bandit) or else just some supportive underthings that you can get at Target or wherever.

Do the bridal shower and spa day (or whatever) earlier like you planned.

Also make sure that your friend knows what situations would cause you to bow out at the last minute-- health concerns or emergencies or whatever. The other bridesmaids should also know just in case the have to kind of fill-in. Also, make sure she understands that you will be keeping the baby with you the whole time (or pretty much the whole time, maybe not during the ceremony) and that you will need to nurse frequently, and will need to sit down frequently, etc etc.

I completely understand why you would want to do this for your very best friend even though otherwise you would never dream of it. Good luck with everything!

♥ blogger astrologer mom to three cool kiddos, and trying to figure out this divorce thing-- Blossom and Glow ♥

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