When Wedding Planning Backfires:
How to Cope!
Stressed out couples, budgets worn thin, family feuds… it happens more than you think. No, we aren’t talking about a major life tragedy, we are talking about wedding planning. Believe it or not, and at some point in our lives, most of us will have to experience it. What makes wedding planning so hard? What makes deciding to elope so heartbreaking? The truth is that neither one of these options has to have a negative outcome. All you have to do is ask yourself a few questions to know where your heart wants to take you. I won’t say the rest is easy, but at least you will know that you are making the right decision.
When I was 18 years old my high school sweetheart called me up as I was going through the drive through at Dairy twin for a cherry Dr. Pepper.
“Let’s get married tomorrow.”
“OK! Wait, let’s do Thursday so my friends can be there”
Without a word to our families or most of our friends we showed up at the JP with foolish love in our hearts. We ran around the courthouse trying to find a judge to sign off on our marriage, because of course we didn’t know there was a waiting period. And yes, we lied to get it done. Our honeymoon was spent on a friend’s bed and after that it was back to life as usual, for about a month. The chaos that ensued when our families found out wasn’t fun at all, however…
Through it all we beat every statistic and all of the odds and are still happily married today, 11 years later.
While wedding planning may make you want to rip someones eyeballs right out of their damn head, or leaving everyone out and eloping sounds terrifying, the marriage is what you are left with. After its all over, you still have a spouse to learn to live with, a spouse you have to work with everyday to make sure peace reigns above all else. So why not take the time before hand to ensure you are taking the right path on your way to marriage?
Today I want to talk with you about the questions you need to ask yourself in order to fully understand the decisions you make and the path they will lead you down. Whether planning a big party or an intimate getaway, what is most important is that you do right by you and your partner.
3 Questions to Ask Before You Say I do:
No, these aren’t important life questions like, do you want kids, or what religion will our family be, but they can be just as important. Your marriage doesn’t begin when you say “I Do”, it begins when you start planning your lives together. The actual act of getting married is part of that and it is important to make sure it reflects how you want to participate in your marriage together.
I’m a stickler for making sure all of my couples begin their process with understanding their priorities. Even though you can stop the wedding planning process at any time and do this exercise, it’s so helpful to begin with it.
Head over to my article about Guiding Your Priorities and download the worksheets to get started today. This will require both of your participation. If you found it useful share it with any of your friends getting married. They will thank you!
Many of you may be able to stop here but if you still are not sure keep reading!
Ultimately, the choice is yours and no one should make you feel guilty for any of the choices you make regarding your marriage. Of course, they still will, and even if your family or friends doesn’t guilt you, you may still give yourself grief.
I am a people pleaser and I know that there are many of us out there. No matter what decision you are trying to make you are worried about hurting someone. There really is no way around it, but there is a way to barrel through it. Keep in mind, who you are worried about offending, why you are worried and why they might be offended. Make a pros and cons list, one for planning a big wedding, one for eloping, and focus your energy on those you love. Direct your pros and cons towards them and see what you come up with.
It may also be important to figure out how you will pay for your wedding, your family dynamic, your own personal values and what restrictions that may put on you and your decisions.
Weighing Disappointment vs Reward:
Maybe you have been planning your wedding since you were 5 years old and always knew that a huge party would be your destiny. Then you start the wedding planning process and realize how much it has taken over your life and relationship. It’s OK to want out!
Perhaps you knew from the start that you are too shy to be the center of attention around so many people, or that you just always figured you would want to save money for your marriage and not a wedding. It’s OK to change your mind because you feel like you are missing out. It’s OK to want something more.
Making this decision requires focus of your values and that of your partner. It requires opening up, to being vulnerable, to truly understand what you want out of this process. Wedding planning should be, and remain, nothing but pure, joyful nerves. If you find yourself disappointed in some aspect of what you thought you wanted its OK to stop and consider the reward you are getting out of that choice and whether or not it will be worth it.
Hopefully by this point you are beginning to see wedding planning in a different light. Now what? Where do you begin planning now that you know what you want? Start with your priories list and work from there. Seek out wedding professionals that specialize in the top things from your list and ask for their opinions and help.
Coming to Terms:
Deep Breathing + You Favorite Vice
If you made it this far and you are still with me, congratulations and thank you! Wedding planning can be super scary and really stressful but if you take the time to get your head straight and include honest conversations with your partner, most of it will be a no brainer.
Just like my husband and I, if their are two sides ready to work hard to make something beautiful the rest is just extra! So grab a bottle of wine or a chocolate cake and get to work.
Don’t forget to download your FREE “Guiding Your Priorities” worksheet, link in THIS article. When you are ready for your FREE wedding photography consultation use the contact form below to get in touch.
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