“Bridezilla” is someone who is controlling, demanding, and borderline abusive about her wedding planning. It almost always refers to a woman.
I hate me a negative, gendered stereotype (“Karen”, the “c-word”…) because it implies that women are somehow WORSE for behaviors that men typically, at worst, might get an eyeroll over. When I stumbled on this thread from u/BrunetteBlondeSoul95 asking the AskWomen community on Reddit what they think of the term “bridezilla”, I found myself nodding along the answers.
What do you think?
1. Toxic Wedding Culture
Idk how nuanced my opinion is, but I feel like the term bridezilla is actually a result of wedding culture being toxic to begin with, especially with how scammy it is.
Since childhood young girls are told that the wedding is the most important moment in your life and that it needs to be perfect or else you’re a failure. Couple that with the fact that there’s pressure for women to marry in general. A woman constantly gets pressure built up about making the wedding excellent where men are traditionally expected / told to take a back seat and not help.
I don’t think it’s really any individual woman’s fault, but just we live in a culture that puts the entire burden on them, so if makes sense for women to get stressed out and freak out. It’s normally a big event that costs a lot of money (for no good reason).
I’ve definitely felt the pressure myself but have been adamant about not being scammed by the wedding industry. When I told my mother I wasn’t having a wedding because it would be too expensive, she told me “You have to and you have to invite us”. They almost started crying even.
2. Use it right
The term itself is fine when used right. Some brides ask people to cut/dye their hair so they don’t steal the limelight, what the fuck.
But, of course, people will take the term and use it to describe anyone who mildly inconvenience them.
Pretty weird for our culture to tell women our whole lives that we’re supposed to want our perfect wedding, and then call us misogynist shaming names when we attempt to reach that goal.
Personally I wasn’t a “bridezilla” at all when I had my tiny little pandemic wedding, but I’m suspicious of any cultural phenomenon that sets women up for failure and then blames them for it.
4. What’s the male term?
Not a fan. Brides are allowed to have preferences….I’m still salty because I got called a bridezilla because I wanted dark purple flowers, not dark red.
What’s the male equivalent for a “being controlling about your own event”? Is there one?
5. Rare cases
Applied to any woman planning a wedding – sexist as hell. In rare cases, it applies though. My cousin who removed her sister in law from being a bridesmaid at the last minute because the spray tan she got “made her look like an Oompa Loompa” comes immediately to mind.
6. It’s been conflated
I think it’s fair enough when appropriately used, I’ve met the odd woman in my time who was deeply unfair with wedding demands. I do think it’s sort of been conflated to mean ‘anyone who has a preference about their wedding’, though, and people use it in strange ways ie they wanted a plus one and didn’t get it, so the bride is a bridezilla
I never gave the term much thought until recently. My fiancé and I are deep into planning our wedding. We both know what we want and don’t want, and we’re not going to stray far from our plans.
I made this clear to our wedding planner recently, after she suggested tweaking a few of our ideas. When I dismissed her suggestions she said, “I hope your not going to become a bridezilla on me.” The conversation after that was basically informing her she’s very replaceable. If that makes me a bridezilla, so be it.
8. My personal favorite
I think it’s a bit like ‘Karen’. It might have come from some real problematic behaviour but it’s but started being used to tell assertive women to sit down and shut up.
9. What about men
I think it’s fine when used correctly. But we should have an equivalent for men too. I’m planning my wedding with my fiancé who usually has zero opinions but apparently has expensive wedding taste. So I will joke with him about being a groomzilla. No reason we can’t have groomzillas also.
It’s just that all the burden and pressure gets put on the brides, so they’re more likely to react under pressure. Like even if we’re both talking to a vendor, they tend to look at me when asking questions. Or my fiancé was calling about something and they were like oh, was this the task she gave you? Why is THIS the thing women get to be in charge of? Ugh.
10. Shame & Control
It probably falls into that standard category of female centered insults that are used to try to shame and control women (In this case, those who are simply expressing preferences for their wedding), but that is also used for women who are being entirely unreasonable and awful (In this case, those that go way over the top and are cruel, insulting, demanding, entitled, etc). People will defend the use of the term because they think of it as the latter while many other people take advantage of that and use it for the former.
11. An outlier
I think it’s funny. And very descriptive of a certain type of overbearing behaviour often reflected in the stories of incredibly entitled brides-to-be.
I agree, it’s too quickly used. It’s the wedding remix of calling women hysterical.
13. Just like Karens
Really don’t like it. It’s true that lots of women do behave really appallingly surrounding their wedding but why put a gendered term on it when one doesn’t exist for men?? It’s the same thing for Karens. I’m not excusing their behaviour but it’s kind of grim that a man could behave the same way as a “karen” as just get called a d*ck but literally a whole internet trend has been created out of women doing the same thing.
Then ofc you get people using the term to dismiss a woman just because they don’t agree with her. Getting mildly stressed doesn’t make you a bad person but people will cry “bridezilla” as a way to invalidate them based on their gender. Same as the crazy ex-girlfriend stereotype. Like, was she crazy or was she pushed to extreme behaviour because you abused, manipulated and gaslighted her?
14. Applied correctly
I don’t take issue with it when it applies to actual bridezillas.
I have seen women become completely obsessive over their weddings, thinking they can boss everyone around for months because they are the bride. Women are brought up to think that their wedding day will be the most special, beautiful day of their lives, and some take it to heart more than others. When my friend was the maid of honour for her best friend, her bestie told her to lose weight or she wouldn’t be in the wedding. We are all furious with that woman for how much she upset my friend. Another woman I knew forced her sister to dye her hair a “natural” colour because she didn’t want a bridesmaid with blue hair to “ruin” her photos.
15. This is a super nuanced take
If it’s applied to unreasonable behavior, I think it’s warranted. If it’s applied to reasonable preferences about one’s own event, it’s a reflection of sexism. Now, where and how one draws the line between reasonable and unreasonable behavior and demands might be fluctuating and subjective, but there are some crazy stories out there, and I think we’ve all read a story or two that cross pretty far into narcissistic territory.
We can talk about all the pressure being put on the woman from childhood about her wedding, and most of it would be justified calling out of undue and sexist societal pressures.
We can also talk about how as an adult it’s your responsibility, and yours alone, how you behave and what of the societal and familial conditioning you internalize. I get conditioning, but please don’t tell me women who expect others to bend over backwards, spend huge amounts of money, and change stuff about their appearance so they can “feel special” on their wedding day aren’t doing it for themselves.
16. Just like other gendered insults
I think it’s an appropriate name for how some women go about planning their weddings. But it does get used in not so extreme cases over just a matter of the brides opinion and is no different than other gendered insults in those instances.
17. Great when used right
I find the term hilarious, same for Groomzilla. For some people it’s a really fitting term. And it’s a funny word play.
But I hate it when it’s used incorrectly. Same for the term Karen.
18. Do it right != Bridezilla
I mean. Obviously there are some women planning their weddings who are going to be all “yOu cAnT hAvE rEd HaIr, iT cLaShEs wItH tHe bRiDeSmAiD DrEsS” on their special day which is all about them. But. Most women are not like that, and I feel like the term too often gets applied to women being like “I want my cake delivered the morning of the wedding not the day before, and I’m paying you a thousand dollars for this cake, and tens of thousands for this wedding, sooooo make it happen” which … ya know, pretty reasonable. If you’re paying your hard earned money for a service, ESPECIALLY with the amount the charge for anything with the word wedding in front of it, it’s reasonable to expect that service to be rendered correctly. That’s WHY places charge so much for wedding stuff, because it needs to be done perfectly.