7 Truly Awful Hen Parties You'll Be Glad You Didn't Attend

Illustrated by Assa Ariyoshi
It’s fair to say that hen dos have been getting steadily out of control. In the 1960s and '70s, a favourite hen do activity was to stick rude words over the bride-to-be’s coat and parade her around the local pub. Pretty risqué back then, but we’ve really outdone ourselves since. Last year I had to say no to a weekend in the south of France because I’d already booked a holiday, couldn’t really afford another one and didn’t want to bankrupt myself hanging out with 10 people I barely knew. The year before that, I didn’t want to abseil down a mountain because I’m frightened of heights. Call me selfish. I’m all for a celebration of romance, but do we have to do it quite so violently? Even the low-key dos are rife with jarring penis straws and weird games like 'pin the penis on the stripper' and, let’s be honest, the sight of male genitalia is hardly the scandal it once was.
In years gone by, people would have thrown a 'stag and doe' party which, contrary to what you might think, was a lovely knees-up for both the bride and groom, where they – and all their friends and family – celebrated the coming wedding. It wasn’t an exercise in how far you can take it before everyone starts dropping out, or winds up in A&E. It’s like we’re desperate to outdo the stag dos (which have also spiralled out of control), to prove that we can have fun too, even if that fun involves putting people who don’t know each other into unfamiliar situations. Which can lead to some seriously nightmarish scenarios. So as a word of warning, or just in the name of light entertainment, we’ve rounded up some hen do horror stories which, hopefully, we can all learn from.
And if you’re a maid of honour tasked with the organisation, all I say to you is: Don’t invite a puppy to the party, unless you’re absolutely sure it won’t try to bite the bride’s arm off.

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