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5 Things No One Tells You About Being a Best Man

The guide to being the ultimate wingman.

Contributing Writer
Photography by: Jennifer Emerling

Your best bro is getting hitched, or as you like to think, "another good man bites the dust." You'd take down a zombie posse to protect this dude, so naturally you'll do the ultimate wingman duty and stand by his side as he ditches singledom for good. You already know what happens at a bachelor party in Vegas stays in Vegas and you have been told you look good in a tux. Cakewalk. You got this. But take heed from best men past: There's a little more that goes into this honorable job than taking a few shots for the wedding team. 


You have to say, "yes"—a lot.

What happened to Iron Man, the guy who could singlehandedly open a beer bottle top with his teeth and debut his bare, painted chest in 30-degree weather? He seems to have been replaced by a shirt-tucking, hair-parting prepster who really did not like it when you told him his pink whale-clad cummerbund reminded you of your grandmother's toilet seat cover. This new version of your BFF is suddenly sensitive and left his sense of humor back in college.  

You actually need to be responsible. 

But weren't weddings supposed to be fun? Like with all kinds of free alcohol at the ready? Now you have to pay attention, and paying attention has never been your strong suit. Some might even say you have a not-so-mild form of ADD. And all these things to remember are coming at you—what time to be there for the rehearsal dinner, where to stand at the ceremony, what to say to his in-laws—and swirling around in your head like a bad dream. Oh, the pressure! 


You will need to channel your inner Oprah. 

… because he's about to get all sentimental and tears will be shed. This was the dude who put a moratorium on dating from ages 22 to 32 and suddenly he's sobbing like a girl about how blessed he feels to have found her. And phrases like "you are worthy," "you are a good man," "you are so handsome" are spilling out of your mouth Oprah-style as you hug it out. Who is this person? And more importantly, who are you? 

Your face will hurt from a full-tooth grin

... and not because you are so happy you simply can't hide it. You've been warned—nay, told—by some very burly-looking relatives that you must be friendly and greet every guest who walks through the ceremony doors with a perma grin. Yet, your idea of smiling is more like a smirk, corners barely upturned. So holding said face will feel like water torture and you may hit a period of delirium when you are convinced a twinkle is beaming off your tooth.   


You're going to take a long, hard look at yourself. 

Once you're up there and your bro becomes a husband, you might feel an unfamiliar twinge, a tightness in your chest, a trickle down your cheek. It's called, "emotion," and it'll hit you like an oncoming freight train. And you'll start to think maybe this marriage thing isn't so bad after all. Maybe you should call that girl who slipped you her number at the bar last weekend? Being single isn't fun without your best bud around, is it? And well, you kind of always wanted to get married on the beach. Hmm, an orange cummerbund with yellow polka dots would look quite good … 

About the Author

Jennifer Tzeses

As an eight-time bridesmaid Jenny knows just a little bit about mitigating a makeup meltdown and distracting a meddling mom. As a former editor for Martha Stewart Weddings magazine, her knowledge of all things weddings extended to bridal beauty and fashion, etiquette, and honeymoons. Her writing (weddings and otherwise) appears in such publications and websites as Martha Stewart...


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