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The Big Question: Who Should My Maid of Honor Be? Who You Should Ask and Why

The Big Question:  Who Should My Maid of Honor Be?
Who you should ask and why

Choosing Your Bridal Party

For some brides, it isn’t even a question:  my best friend from school, my best girlfriend at work, my twin sister, my cousin, my youngest sister. There’s that perfect person who you’re really close to and who you know will make a great maid of honor.

But for many other brides, the answer to the question isn’t so easy. Many people in life just don’t have best friends, and many don’t have sisters. And even for those who do, such friends and relatives aren’t always maid of honor material.

Before you even consider who to pick, it’s a great idea to really think about what kind of qualities you want your maid of honor to have.

More than likely, you’ll want your maid of honor . . .

  • To be someone who is close to you.
    • Pick someone who is close to you and who you have a meaningful relationship with, someone who you know already is or has the potential to be a life-long friend.
    • Don’t pick someone you might not be friends with in a year, or who would only be around for you during the wedding and would disappear from your life after it is all over and done with!
  • To be someone who truly cares about you, who is a genuine friend.
    • It’s definitely not a good idea to pick a friend who has jealously issues, who tends to be very self-centered, or who you have a meaningless, empty relationship with. You don’t want your maid of honor making the day more about herself than anyone else, or failing to make the day special entirely!
  • To be someone who is responsible and reliable.
    • Your maid of honor should be someone who is good at planning and organizing, someone who thinks ahead. You don’t want someone who easily forgets important dates and appointments or does everything last minute.

In other words, you want your maid of honor to be a friend who is important to you and who will take her position seriously and compassionately.

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Now the real dilemma:  who?

So, if you’re one of those people who read the above and responded with something like, “Wow! My sister, Elaine, has all these qualities! She would be a perfect maid of honor!” or something like, “Anna! She’s my old college roommate and we are really close and she would love to do that!”, then congrats, you’re set!

But, if you’re like most people, the situation of picking a maid of honor isn’t always so easy. For many brides, there just isn’t someone who stands out clearly as a potential maid of honor. And for some there are multiple friends who come to mind!

So, what do you do when it’s complicated? When you can’t think of a single friend or person to be your maid of honor? Or when both your sister and friend would be great maids of honor but you don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings? Or when your closest friend would love to be your maid of honor but she’s terrible at planning? Or when you’d like to ask your closest cousin to do it but she’s going to be out of the country?

Personally, when I think of this kind of dilemma, the movie Made of Honor comes to mind. For those of you who haven’t seen it, the chick-flick, starring Patrick Dempsey and Michelle Monaghan, tells the story of Hannah, a young woman who is getting married and asks her best friend, Tom, who is a guy (obviously), to be her maid of honor.

Now, I know some of you are reading this and thinking, Really? Is she really suggesting I do something as absurd as asking a guy friend to be my maid of honor? But I am not suggesting that you do something absurd, weird, or strange because you have no other options or you’re in a sticky situation. I am suggesting that in your choice you be untraditional, imaginative, and creative. Why? Because it is your day, your memory, your wedding!

So, can’t think of anyone who is closer to you than your brother? Then ask your brother to be your maid of honor!

But you say your brother is really forgetful? Then ask your closest friend to pair up with him and be a pair of maids of honor!

Your sister and best friend are both perfect candidates, but you don’t want hurt one of their feelings by asking only one of them? Then ask both of them!

The only person in the world who you know would be your perfect maid of honor is your grandma? Then ask her! She would be honored and, besides, it’s your wedding!

Yes, I am serious. It’s your wedding, your day, your event. Just because the person who you think would make a great maid of honor doesn’t happen to be a best friend, your sister, or even a female, does not mean you shouldn’t pick them! When it comes to your maid of honor, in the end it’s more about having a great friend and companion by your side than having someone who simply fits the social mold of what’s acceptable and “what looks right.” So, make your pick, be proud of it, and enjoy all the moments and memories that come along with it!

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2010 Hannah Kiefer,
Want to use this article in your E-zine or website? You can as long as you include this complete statement: Event Planning entrepreneur Hannah Kiefer with Simple Elegance Events and Wedding Designs publishes this weekly e-zine. Get your FREE  “My Dream Wedding without the Nightmare”  at

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