When choosing who to include in your bridal party, issues must be considered other than who is closest to you or who you feel obliged to ask. The position entails more than simply standing by your side at the altar and may be more than some are willing to/can take on.
There is a cost that comes along with the duty. While you select the dresses, shoes and accessories, it is typically expected they purchase them on their own. Additionally, each commonly split the charges for the bachelorette party and bridal shower. As much as some may love to fill the position, it is just not feasible for them and you should not be offended by that.
Time and availability must be contemplated too. Most arrangements can be made via email or phone but some should be done in person to ensure everything is just as you want. However, it is not inappropriate to include someone who is unable to participate in every activity (depending their significance) without offending those who can.
Because someone accepts an invitation from a mutual friend yet declines yours is not indicative of importance or lack thereof. Circumstances change, other obligations have arisen and so on. They should still be invited as a guest though.
No wedding is going to go off flawlessly and there will undoubtedly be disappointments. They should not be taken personally nor create a cloud over what should be the shiniest day of your life.
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