Hi Sasha, my husband and I moved to another country for work and decided to elope while away. We've told our family and a small number of our friends. We are planning a more formal celebration when we visit Canada in 2014 (I know it seems like a long time from now). One of my closest friends became engaged recently and she informally told friends that her wedding will be this summer. Last month, they decided to change to a bigger venue and moved the date to summer of 2014. I'm a bit torn. I'm going to her wedding as she's one of my dearest friends but it's also quite expensive to fly back to Canada from China.  I don't want to hijack her wedding happiness by scheduling our celebration so close, but I also can't afford to fly to Canada twice in a year. What's your suggestion? If I plan our celebration close to hers, should I do it before or after their celebration? I'm not fussy about a date or venue so I'm a bit more flexible, but we also have a lot of friends in common who will be invited to both celebrations and will be flying from out of town.  L


Congratulations to you for not being a freak of nature bride. I think you’re being very reasonable and sensitive in this situation.

So here's my first thought on this: if you don’t want to steal her thunder then planning your bash after her wedding would be the best idea. But then, there's the possibility that she'd actually prefer your celebration to be the warm-up to her big day. Who really knows? Seeing as neither you nor I have the answer, I think the most stress-free way to figure this out is by giving your friend a call to see if she has a preference. I mean, if you’re pretty easy breezy about the whole thing then let her make the decision.

I think the lesson here is that if you want a friendship free of drama the key is to try and talk things out when and if there is a potential stress or conflict on the horizon.  So much of the time when we need to get real with someone we freeze up and let it all explode in our own head.  It just makes the situation way more complicated than it needs to be.  So it’s easy, if a decision of yours is going to affect someone in a potentially negative way, then always be up front and honest.
Hope this helps!  xx