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Upset Young WomanYou wish for positive vendor experiences when planning your wedding. Hopefully, you’ll be mostly blessed with no troubles. Even if you encounter bumps in the road, you can smooth them over with a simple conversation or two. Yet sometimes a vendor makes remarks that are terrible, unsettling, or even downright hurtful. An incident that went viral on social media proves this point abundantly, but it also demonstrates possible ways engaged couples can handle this type of problem.

An Example of How Words Can Hurt

Refinery29’s Olivia Harrison reported in December 2016 about the negative experience Ariel McRae and her then husband-to-be Quinn had at a Pandora jewelry store. Like many young adult couples, Ariel and Quinn didn’t have much money to spend on their engagement and wedding rings. According to Harrison, the couple chose to buy inexpensive yet tasteful jewelry and wed in a simple courthouse ceremony. Brides Blush elaborates that the ring set Quinn purchased for Ariel cost around $130.

What should have been a completely joyful event was tarnished by a Pandora employee’s rude comments, calling Quinn’s selection “pathetic.” Ariel disclosed in a Facebook post that Quinn was crestfallen, fearing that Ariel would reject him over the inexpensive jewelry. However, Ariel remained steadfast in her feelings towards Quinn and exclaimed, “It isn't the ring that matters, it is the love that goes into buying one that matters.” The Straits Times mentions that Pandora apologized to the couple for their distress and offered Ariel a bracelet as compensation.

Understanding the Problem

Nasty remarks may not be your only problem with a particular vendor, but they’re still a cause for concern. As Brides writer Anna Price Olson points out, a good interpersonal relationship is imperative when you’re working with these professionals. How they treat you as well as your ability to trust them can make or break collaborations. Even though you may brush off hurtful words with a “sticks and stones” approach, letting the incident go isn’t wise. After all, you could face strained relations and trust with that vendor later during the planning stages. Not only that, the incident could escalate into bigger problems if left unchecked.

Tips for a Worthwhile Resolution

Whether you decide to contact the vendor first or take to social media is entirely up to you. As Ariel McRae’s situation proves, some businesses facing negative public commentary will reach out and try to make things right. You may have heard about engaged couples being sued for negative reviews, usually resulting from what The Knot’s Simone Hill calls “non-disparagement” or no-review clauses. NBC News clarified in December 2016 that the recently passed Consumer Review Fairness Act prohibits such clauses.

Even so, your words should still truthfully describe what happened and come from a clearheaded point of view. Consumer Action offers a helpful guide, stressing that you should document essential facts such as the date and time of the incident and any communications between you and the vendor. When contacting the company directly, present your case in a polite manner. Should you decide to post about your experience online, Simone Hill suggests that you stick to the facts and calmly review your words before publishing them. If you want examples of how not to write a negative review, GQ’s Keith Wagstaff has you covered.

Poise, Honesty, and Tact Are Essential

Insensitive remarks can sting, but they feel even worse coming from a vendor whom you trust to make your day special. You may be tempted to dismiss them, but it’s better to address the problem. The story of Ariel and Quin McRae illustrates how you can handle negative vendor experiences. Accurate documentation with a composed and positive approach can help you pursue a fair resolution.


Category: Wedding Planning

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