It isn't an easy decision. Almost every bride I know had a bit of a panic attack in choosing her girls. I'm not even engaged and already I am terrified of having to 'make the cut'. I have been a bridesmaid eight times now. So if I repay each bride that I maided, that is 8 women, PLUS the other 6 or so who I really want to be in my wedding. That would make my number 14 which is not only ridiculous, but the Engineer has like two friends. JJ. He has three.
One of my good friends, who is also a perma-bridesmaid, made a pact with me. We promised our gift to each other was not to be a bridesmaid in our weddings. When she got engaged and called me, I have to admit that I didn't know how to end the conversation. Usually at that point I am asked to be a bridesmaid and we are talking colours. It was an awkward ending, seeing as we were both so not used to the non-bridesmaid protocol. So now I am an emcee.
Okay, so now I am at 13? This is where a good friend of mine came up with a brilliant solution. Instead of asking all your friends to be a bridesmaid, choose just a few and for the rest give them a scarf or a necklace or a flower-brooch. Then explain to each why she is important in your life and ask her to wear said item on your wedding day. Then make a speech at your wedding not only thanking the bridesmaids, but also all the women wearing said item. Therefore, they are included (without the matching dress) and all those attending your wedding see that these women are the exclusive members of the 'Bridesmaid Club'. I think it is a brilliant solution.
My other solution is to have the daughters of the brides I have maided be my flowergirls, and then their moms don't have to be in the wedding.
My final solution is to elope. Or just not have a wedding. Or to take all my girlfriends off of Facebook.