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Wedding Etiquette Blunders: What Not to Do as a Guest

Weddings are joyous occasions filled with love, laughter, and celebration. But even amidst the merriment, it’s crucial to remember proper etiquette. As a guest, your behavior can significantly impact the atmosphere of the ceremony and reception. To ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience for everyone, here’s a guide to some common wedding etiquette blunders you should avoid:

Announcing Your Divorce 

Angry woman throwing shirt at relaxed man, being frustrated about boyfriend not helping with housework. Stressed adult getting mad at life partner, doing spring cleaning at home. Handheld shot.

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Announcing a divorce at a wedding is considered offensive because it steals attention from the celebrating couple and overshadows their joy. It’s a day meant to celebrate love and commitment, and making such a negative announcement disrespects the newlywed and their guests.

A user says, “My grandfather announced he was divorcing my grandmother at my parent’s wedding… I’d say that should be a NO-NO.” 

Having A Tequila Drinking Contest 

Tired drunk man after party at home

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Conducting a tequila drinking contest promotes excessive alcohol consumption, potentially leading to intoxication, unpleasant incidents, and damage to the celebratory atmosphere. 

A user says, “My mother, at my brother’s wedding, decided it was a good idea to have a tequila drinking contest at the open bar… by herself. She then went on to hit on the father of the bride, who is happily married, then my father (divorced for over 30 years), and she threw up down the front of her dress and passed out with her underwear around her ankles in a stall of the bathroom at the reception hall.”

Coming Out Of The Closet

gay couple

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Coming out at someone’s wedding will overshadow their special day, causing discomfort and detracting from the intended focus. Choose a more suitable time and setting to share personal revelations.

A user says, “During my wedding, my wife’s cousin used the band’s microphone to come out as gay, and then his boyfriend, who nobody knew (and was not invited) strolled in, and together they announced their engagement. I went straight to the bar.”

Cheating With The Best Man

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Cheating with the best man at someone’s wedding is a betrayal of trust on multiple levels. 

A user says, “True story: years ago, I was at a wedding reception at a big hotel with two receptions. I went to the men’s room, and a guy in a tux cried his eyes out while another comforted him. I took my time and learned that the crying guy was the groom (from the other wedding), the comforting guy was one of his groomsmen, and the cause of the drama was that the groom walked in on his new bride being intimate with his best man.”

Holding The Food Hostage

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 “On my wedding day, my caterer tried to hold the food we had already paid for hostage unless we gave her more money right then and there. 

Don’t do that. It’s kinda uncool. Luckily she caved when I called the bank to cancel the check I had already given her.” says a user. 

It is disrespectful and disruptive to their celebration. It undermines their trust in the caterer and their plan for the event, potentially leading to stress and frustration. 

Letting Your Kids Throw Tantrums

angry kid

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Letting children throw tantrums at someone’s wedding affects the celebration. It disrupts the solemn and joyous atmosphere, making the parents appear irresponsible and inconsiderate of the couple’s special day. 

A user says, “Letting your 9-year-old throw a tantrum because he’s not the center of attention. I’ve seen that not only at a wedding but also at a funeral. Same kid.”

Wearing A White Dress

bridesmaid 1

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Wearing a white dress at a wedding is offensive because it traditionally symbolizes the bride’s purity and special status. By wearing white, a guest risks upstaging the bride and taking away attention from her special day. It’s considered disrespectful and a breach of etiquette, potentially causing hurt or embarrassment for the bride.

“Wearing a white dress. No matter how good you look. I’m looking at you, Kelly Kapoorr.” says one user. 

“Almost every wedding I have been to, there was a female guest wearing a white/cream dress, even a few wearing a long white one. Like really? You couldn’t be bothered to pick something else out?” added another 

Informing The Bride About Minor Hitches


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Minor hitches are inevitable at any wedding, but informing the bride can be detrimental. It can unnecessarily add stress and anxiety on her already-emotional day, potentially disrupting her mood and enjoyment. 

A user says, “Telling the bride about any hitches in the wedding.  At my cousin’s wedding, one of the guests told her (the bride) that the buffet was out of roast beef. She’s stressed out enough, and she doesn’t need to know. Somebody else should take care of it. Tell the wedding coordinator or the maid of honor.”

Harassing The Soundboard Staff

21. Wedding photography

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Harassing soundboard staff to play specific songs disrupts their concentration and adds unnecessary pressure on their demanding job. 

A user says, “I work the soundboard at weddings; please don’t harass the staff. Some drunk dude comes up during the reception.

“Hey… hey… hey… *hey*… Can you play the cha-cha slide?” I’m sorry, man; the bride gave me a *very* detailed playlist that didn’t include that for a reason. Stop annoying me every five minutes. I’m being polite and noncommittal because I have to. Also, pull up a family tree of the family you aren’t familiar with and go over it. A tenth of the time, someone gets a name wrong on the mic, and that’s easily avoidable.”

Sharing Embarrassing Incidents About The Bride/Groom

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Sharing embarrassing stories about the bride or groom at their wedding is disrespectful and hurtful. It can cause them shame or humiliation on their special day and create an uncomfortable atmosphere for guests who might feel between laughter and awkwardness. It’s important to prioritize their feelings and celebrate their joy without resorting to humor that might come at their expense.

“Telling embarrassing stories about the bride/groom when you were told not to.” Said one 

“I think there’s a difference between “haha” embarrassing and “you really shouldn’t be telling people that stuff” embarrassing.” Another added.

Jumping In Front Of The Photographer With Your Cell Phone

Photographer working with young wedding couple in studio

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Jumping in front of the camera with a cell phone at someone’s wedding is discouraged as it disrupts the professional photographer’s work and may block crucial moments. Respecting the couple’s chosen photographer to capture the event seamlessly and ensuring lasting memories without unnecessary interruptions is essential.

A user says, “If a professional photographer is there, get out of the way. Put up your crappy cell phone with its awful flash. Good money was paid so that they could capture quality images of the event, and people constantly jump in front of the photographer and screw up the lighting.”

Bringing A Child To A Child-Free Wedding

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Bringing children to a child-free wedding disrupts the carefully planned atmosphere and disrespects the couple’s wishes. Unpredictable behavior and noise from children can disrupt the ceremony, speeches, and music, impacting the flow and serenity of the event. This ultimately detracts from the couple’s vision for their special day and can create tension and resentment among guests.

A user says, “Bringing a child to a child-free wedding. All the guests knew we had a child-free wedding this year, and then a couple (whom we had told personally not to bring their child) turned up with their baby. Really put me in a sour mood with them and caused issues with people asking why their child was allowed but not their own.”

Being Underdressed

makeup wedding

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While comfort is important, arriving underdressed to a wedding sends a message that the occasion isn’t worth effort. 

A user says, “The most common issue I have seen in IRL is being underdressed.  People show up in boots, camo, t-shirts, etc.  It’s not the end of the world, but if you can’t get dressed up for a wedding, what do you dress up for?  It’s one of the most formal events a normal person will attend.”

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This article was originally published on Mrs. Daaku Studio.