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White Bride Balks After Black Future Sister-In-Law Asks To Wear Different Shade Bridesmaid Dress

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We’re all familiar with the game of Telephone, right?

Everyone lines up and, starting at one end of the line, you whisper a phrase. The phrase is passed down the line, person-to-person, until the end comes and the phrase isn’t remotely what you began with.

We see this sort of disfigurement of information all the time through copy-paste articles and click-bait headlines, but we forget that this happens in real life too.

This was the issue facing Redditor and Original Poster (OP) BestLocal1821 when she came to the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for judgment.

She asked:

“AITA for asking my future SIL to let me wear a different shade of Bridesmaid dress?”

OP began with a little background.

“I’m a 25 year old black woman and my brother who is 30 is getting married in February of 2023, my future SIL has asked me to be one of her Bridesmaids and I said yes flattered she’d ask.”

“We were recently trying on dresses to get an idea of what the Bridesmaids would be wearing and she fell in love with a fairly cute dress in Aubergine.”

She moved rapidly to the problem at hand.

“The issue here is i’m the only bridesmaid who isn’t white, what suits their skin tone doesn’t suit me at all.”

“They all looked stunning in this dress, me not so much.”

“I’m not saying black women can’t wear aubergine either, it looks amazing on some people I’m just sadly not one of them.”

“I saw the same dress came in some lighter colours so I asked if we could try on a lighter shade of purple and this one was far better on me.”

“It was only a few shades lighter but made a huge difference.”

“I asked if we could go for this instead but the bride said that colour would wash out the other Bridesmaids a little.”

“I understood that so suggested they wear the other dress and I could wear this one but my future SIL wasn’t having this as she wanted us to match.”

“I didn’t push and resigned myself to looking fugly on the day as it’s her wedding, whatever right?”

“But my Brother called me that night asking me why I’d ask to change the shade of dress in the first place and how it had apparently upset my future SIL that I’d done that…”

“Now, i’d let it go and not pushed so I didn’t see what the big deal was but apparently when she got home she’d blown it out of proportion to him.”

“My brother seems to think I had no right to even imply i’d prefer a different shade of dress than what she picked out and even if I’d accepted her choice it was too little too late as I’d already upset her.”

OP was left to wonder,

“I’m honestly shocked by this, is it that wrong that I’d suggest that she let me wear a different shade of dress?”

Having explained the situation, OP turned to Reddit for judgment.

Redditors weighed in by declaring:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Redditors decided: NAH

Some responses felt that there were deeper issues.

“Eh, I was all on board with NAH u til the bride acknowledged that the color OP wanted wouldn’t suit the paler skin of her other bridesmaids.”

“Why is it less important that OP doesn’t look good in the color?”

“If Bride had not acknowledged the point of OP’s argument as a reason to make sure her paler friends exes to have the other option then she’s being a bit of an unintentional AH.”

“Not racist IMO. However bride was insensitive and a bit ignorant to her bias in that moment.” ~ MoMoJangles

Commenters felt there might have been a better way.

“I’ve never understood why the bride doesn’t pay for bridesmaid dresses, shoes, etc.”

“One of my friends said, ‘It is the bridesmaid’s gift to the bride.'”

“That’s fine, as long as that is the bridesmaid’s only cost for the wedding. Of course, we know they have to shell out a lot more.”

“I recall friends who were in tears because they couldn’t afford the dress, etc. This was long before everyone had their makeup and hair done professionally.”

“If the bride doesn’t want drama, then she needs to step up and pay for the bridesmaid dresses and shoes.”

“NTA for asking about wearing a different shade.” ~ AlleyCat2022

“I also think it’s unfair to ask bridesmaids to pay for their dresses.”

“They are taking time out of their lives/schedules to be part of MY wedding, why should they have to pay for gowns and shoes? This is why I paid all their expenses when I got married.” ~ Brightsidedown

There were personal stories.

“I joined my cousin’s bridal party later than others, after the dress was picked out for the bridesmaids.”

“I and just about everyone around me agreed the dress was honestly awful not to mention it had no sleeves, in an october wedding, outside.”

“I said nothing to the bride about mine or others feelings but cmon, did she really have to play into the stereotype about dressing the bridesmaids horribly so the bride stands out more?”

“I still shiver remembering that day since we had to stand outside in 40-degree weather for 2hrs while the bride had sleeves.”

“Luckily the reception was indoors and as soon as I got inside my mom gave me her cardigan and said I looked cold haha.” ~ Natural-Many8387

“This exactly why I paid for my bridesmaid dresses so that it was no drama.”

“Sounds like a bridezilla, which is a bummer. I think NTA and just tell your brother you enjoyed feeling heard and have accepted the choice his bride has made.”

“It’s your brother, so hopefully he assumes you meant no poor thoughts and just wanted to hear your perspective as well.” ~ Cookiebandit09

“My SIL just asked us to wear red and it was a funny coincidence that none of us wore the same shade but it also happened that the shorter of us had the most vibrant red and it followed perfectly to the tallest. Lots of us didn’t know each other but did it make cute pictures.” ~ Im_your_life

Some were direct in their response.


“You asked, she said no, you accepted the answer. Good on you for not pushing it.”

“I had to wear a bridesmaid dress that was unflattering in both color and style – I asked the same question, got the same answer.”

“So for the one day I wore the dress, and that was it.” ~ Andante79

NTA since you dropped it when SIL said no. SIL might not even be TA.”

“Without having been there, she might have just been questioning her own judgment and thought that she was safely venting to her future DH not realizing that he would call and make a big deal out of it.”

“Brother is definitely an AH.” ~ lizzybell2019

“I don’t think you are TA for asking, however, I don’t think your SIL is TA either because she did already make clear from the start that she wanted all the bridesmaids to match.”

“And then you asked for special treatment which puts your SIL in a difficult position because she is always going to leave someone upset.”

“She either has to upset you by saying no or upset the other bridesmaids because you get special treatment. So you put her in a no-win situation for herself” ~ seriouslywondering99

“I hate how this sub makes brides seem like villains.”

“OP isn’t an AH but the bride is human, she is stressed, and she likely didn’t want OP to question her repeatedly.”

“Not everyone is going to be happy about the dress.”

“Maybe the shape didn’t look good on some girls, maybe other girls have complaints too.”

“I know I’m gonna be a bridesmaid and I’m not the biggest fan of the shape of the dress but I’m not saying anything because it’s the brides day.”

“So NAH but ffs I wish this sub would lay off brides every once in a while…” ~ whatamidoingSOS

“NAH as long as you went with the bride in the end.”

“There’s nothing wrong with asking. But it is the bride and grooms day so whatever dress/suits they want is what everyone should go with.” ~ AleroRatking

Some commenters gave very specific reasoning for their judgment.

“Nope, NTA at all.”

“You asked politely whether it would be possible to change to a different shade dress – and when rejected, you accepted it without pushing.”

“I also think the SIL is free to choose the bridesmaid dresses as she wants them – having just one dress not matching with the rest might have been odd but ideally she should have chosen something that suited everyone.”

“I think SIL was TA because she made it seem like no big deal to you, but exaggerated and blew it out of proportion and made you look bad to your brother.”

“Unfortunately, bridesmaid dresses (especially same colour, same style) often don’t suit at least one person in the bridal party!”

“I think the mismatched trend would have worked way better in this scenario, but again, I’m not the bride.” ~ lonely_peppercorn

OP did return to add some final context to the situation.


“It was suggested I add this for further information to the main post.”

“There is no colour scheme set yet, it’s not like the dress was to match the colour of the groomsmen or the place settings or whatever, she just saw aubergine then and there and liked it so I figured it’d be ok to suggest a lighter shade to look better.”

“If it was a colour scheme that was set in stone I’d have never done this.” 

While the argument may have started because of a dress color, really the problem came down to the perceptions of everyone involved.

OP felt that she handled the situation gently and casually while her future SIL clearly disagreed.

Then when the story got to OP’s brother, he interpreted something even worse.

Remember to be patient with your loved ones and confirm your perceptions as often as possible.

Written by Frank Geier

Frank Geier (pronouns he/him) is a nerd and father of three who recently moved to Alabama. He is an avid roleplayer and storyteller occasionally masquerading as a rational human.