This wedding season, the bridal party is keeping it real

OPINION: A TikTok video has sparked social media discourse about the financial and emotional investments of being in someone’s wedding.

Editor’s note: The following article is an op-ed, and the views expressed are the author’s own. Read more opinions on theGrio.

The flowers are blooming; the sun is shining, and wedding bells are ringing across the country as we enter summer — also known as wedding season.

Whether you’re the bride or groom, weddings and everything leading up to them require a lot of time, energy, and money. This is especially true for those in the wedding party. From engagement parties to bachelor/bachelorette parties to rehearsal dinners, being someone’s bridesmaid or groomsman can feel like a financial and emotional investment. 

So what happens when you see that your newly married friend treads the line of infidelity? Content creator Deshawn Harris (@deshawn_sings) recently sparked a social media debate surrounding this in a TikTok video. In the video, Harris shares how his friend got upset with him for calling him out for trying to talk to other women during a night out at the club. Harris gave his take on the situation after being called a “hater” by his married friend. 

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It’s tricky busy when your newly married friend begins to flirt with infidelity. (Photo: Adobe Stock)

“I ain’t tell you to walk down that aisle. I ain’t tell you to introduce me to this woman and to go get that ring on your finger,” says Harris in the video. “Got me all in this wedding, spending all this money to come to y’all’s wedding just to watch, come in this club and cheat and mess it all up. That’s the money I spent on your wedding. I spent my money on your wedding and I spent a lot of it too […] Nah, y’all staying together. You’re the one that introduced me to this lady and got me calling her sis. I’m not about to be lying in this woman’s face.” 

Harris’ candor left social media users split on the issue. On the one hand, users agreed and emphasized the importance of accountability, while on the other, users — especially male users — felt that Harris was lying to cater to female viewers. Regardless of Harris’ intentions, parody often derives its essence from the truth. And this social media discourse reveals just how often these scenarios happen. Users like Candice Benbow shared how these instances were mirrored in their own lives: 

“One of my homeboys isn’t talking to his [line brother/fraternity brother] right now because he did and said something similar when his [line brother/fraternity brother] was trying to be sneaky. He said, “If you gon cheat, give me all the money I spent on the wedding and bachelor trip to the DR.” LOLOLOL.”

According to a 2022 LendingTree survey, in the United States, members of wedding parties spend an average of $825 on pre-wedding events, attire, and the actual wedding. However, considering that 50% of bridal party members reported that they incurred debt because of their participation in wedding-related events, it’s safe to say that most spent significantly more than $800. 

But the financial aspect cited in this discourse is just a reflection of wedding party member’s more significant investment in the couple. When loved ones come together to celebrate a couple nuptials, it’s almost as if there’s an unspoken vow said among the bridal party. One’s role as a groomsman or bridesmaid serves as confirmation that he or she is the couple’s support system as they embark on this next step. Some even believe this vow extends to the guestlist. 

“Your wedding guests are actually supposed to ONLY be a group of people who are also pretty much vowing to be your village and uphold your marriage with love and respect to you as a couple,” @LindseyCreated shared on Twitter. 

If you’re getting ready to say “I do” this season, be wise when selecting your wedding party. Choose the people in your life who will not only be there when you’re walking down the aisle but will keep you honest and supported after the big day. And if you’ve been invited to join a happy couple’s bridal party, remember that your supportive role extends beyond the aisle and the reception

Haniyah Philogene is a multimedia storyteller and Lifestyle reporter covering all things culture. With a passion for digital media, she goes above and beyond to find new ways to tell and share stories.

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