DEAR MISS MANNERS: How do I tell my second cousin (the mother of the groom) that she needs to wear a bra on the wedding day? The bride has come to me and asked me to ask her future mother-in-law to wear one. She never wears one, ever, and it is obvious that she does not.
Should I bring one with me to the wedding and at least make her put it on for photos? I don’t want to hurt her feelings and I do want to help out the poor bride. What do I do? Should I be the one to do this? Her son refuses.
GENTLE READER: The spectacle of you dangling a brassiere at the wedding and ordering the bridegroom’s mother to go put it on is so delicious that Miss Manners hates to have to kill it. But no, it is not a good idea.
If you are that lady’s close friend, as well as her second cousin, perhaps you could ask her, well in advance, to model her dress for you. Then you could say, after the obligatory encouraging compliments, “but I think it’s meant to be worn with a bra — want me to get you one?”