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Wedding bells

I'm getting married to my Dr. Sweetheart in seven weeks. This means that I need two kinds of advice. Type the first is wedding advice: do you have any bits of wisdom regarding the logistics or other variables of the big day proper? Type the second is marriage advice: what are your thoughts on marriage?

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( 38 comments — Leave a comment )
padiwack
Jul. 22nd, 2010 03:23 pm (UTC)
*bestwishes*
ladyynara
Jul. 22nd, 2010 03:29 pm (UTC)
1) Enjoy the day. The day is for you and not for anyone else (other than the person you are marrying, obviously). Don't compromise on stuff just to make other people happy.

2) Communication, communication, communication.
angstzeit
Jul. 22nd, 2010 03:37 pm (UTC)
Congratulations!

I don't really have any advice since I haven't, nor do I plan, to get married--despite my mom's protestations.

As to thoughts...Marriage and civil unions should be separate things. I know it's popular to say such things now, but I've thought it for a long time. I think the economic, emotional, and social aspects of marriage should be treated separately by society and the state, and as seems appropriate by the individuals involved. And that is, of course, for all people.
trillsie
Jul. 22nd, 2010 03:49 pm (UTC)
CONGRATULATIONS!!!!


My biggest advice is don't sweat the small stuff. Relax and enjoy your day with Dr. Sweetheart.

Marriage means different things to different people. To me marriage is solidifying and proclaiming to the world that the couple is dedicated to each other.
angelbob
Jul. 22nd, 2010 03:49 pm (UTC)
We actually eloped. It worked really, really well for us. However, you're presumably already aware of whether that's an option for you, and have already considered it. :-)

For actually being married, I certainly agree with "communicate, communicate, communicate". I'd also say make sure you've talked to your sweetie about what being married means to him -- you'd like some clue about how things are likely to change (and they will), and some idea about how compatible your ideas are. Expectations of marriage are powerful things, so you should examine them where possible.

Expect to spend some extra time processing about this. You will at least a bit regardless, and planning makes it less painful ;-) Also, start rehearsing how you'll use the word "husband" and react to the word "wife". For some people, that's a big, big change, and for others it slips in naturally. Understand that other people, including poly people, will respond differently to the word "husband" than to the word "lover" or "sweetie" -- it'll be treated differently, and so will you, and by extension your fellow. Prepare to think on that, because, again, you'll need to. And again, this will happen to both of you, and you're likely to react to it differently.

Marriage has worked really, really well for me overall, and I hope it will do the same for you. With that said, it's still hugely different than a long-term cohabiting relationship. Expect that. And the transition will be rockier than you expect (even if only slightly) and take longer (even if only slightly), but at least for us, was definitely limited in time. It probably took Krissy and me about a year and a half to really settle into being married -- we'll have been married for four years come September. It may take you longer, since you've known Dr Sweetheart longer than I had known Krissy, and you have a lot of pre-marriage habits together. Then again, little enough may change that you'll get it all worked out even faster. Hard to say.

But yeah, don't underestimate the differences in mindset and how you'll be treated by others, and in how you'll respond to those things. I'm not sure if getting married feels like much of a change to you (if so, examine why, that's an expectation of what marriage is to you!), but it will be even if it seems like it won't :-)
rightkindofme
Jul. 23rd, 2010 08:21 pm (UTC)
And my darling husband likes to to tell me that the secret to happiness is low expectations. It sound snarky and rude but it's very true. It means that we get to be super excited about one another doing nice things on a regular basis because we don't expect it as mandatory. Very useful.

Good luck. :)
dorei
Jul. 22nd, 2010 03:51 pm (UTC)
the best decision we ever made was to get married and have the reception in the same place. It was cheaper and easier for logistics.

Keeping the guest list small was another important factor. Our party was 32 people, including the bridal party. It meant we could all have a good time, not break the bank, and not feel like we missed out on thanking all those who came out to share the day.
discipuladc
Jul. 22nd, 2010 03:52 pm (UTC)
1) Prioritize. It won't be perfect in every respect, but that won't matter if the things that do matter to you are the things that work.

2) Define it for yourselves. Marriage as an institution has a shudder-inducting history and role in religio-socio-political-economic interactions, and I could rant for days about how economic household units, reproductive matches, community bonding, and interpersonal relationships aren't synonymous and thus shouldn't all be treated as as the same thing.

But your marriage doesn't have to be part of that tradition or argument. Decide what this union means to the two of you, work on that, and to hell with everyone that tries to tell you what your marriage ought to be.

3) Congrats!
writersblock_va
Jul. 22nd, 2010 03:56 pm (UTC)
Congrats :D

1st question. = get something to eat! If you're doing a dinner after, chances are you're going to be so busy meeting/greeting ect. you won't have a chance to eat before all the food is gone :D so make time and nosh a little.

2nd question.
On Marriage "Nothing will change, but nothing will be the same'.

Its life, it can be very easy if you let it be easy. don't get mad and get silent. Talk to your partner.
nidoking
Jul. 22nd, 2010 04:00 pm (UTC)
From where I stand, marriage is something that happens to other people, like being gunned down in war-torn countries or turning from a movie career to drugs and crime. Except some people seem to enjoy marriage. I will absolutely never have a wedding, ever, even if every other man in the world drops dead at the same time or something even less likely happens to make a woman want to marry me. If she's the type who needs a ceremony, then we're just never going to be able to get along. I'm told that's for the families anyway, and I can't say I felt like my brother and his wife were doing me any favors when I had to practice going through the motions of showing people to their seats and spend the evening in a place with dancing and alcohol. No thanks. But, like I said, the choice has been made for me.

I think the reason we have so many divorces is because people think getting married will make them happy, when it's really the other way around.
ftemery
Jul. 22nd, 2010 05:04 pm (UTC)
No advice but I'm so happy for you. We don't both get mad at the same time and nowadays we no longer assume if one person is angry then it must be the other's fault.
krisann
Jul. 22nd, 2010 05:11 pm (UTC)
1... Enjoy your wedding, but remember in the end it is just an event. If things arent perfect, it doesn't matter. Have fun, relax, let it be. It's the marriage you'll remember -- not the stupid off hand comment your crazy Uncle John during the reception or the wrong color flowers on the tables. Yannow?

2... Be each other's best friend, biggest supporter and loudest cheerleader. Agree to disagree, and allow each other the space you each need to continue to develop as an individual.
groblek
Jul. 22nd, 2010 05:36 pm (UTC)
The biggest logistical part we remember is that we were very grateful that we'd hired a wedding planner to be the one who took care of making sure things ran smoothly that day. It was nice to be able to not worry about that part of things.
arxacies
Jul. 22nd, 2010 05:39 pm (UTC)
Ok...
Now this is coming from someone who really, really dislikes weddings and has survived quite a few. So, with that bias noted, here goes.

1. There is a show on TV called "Bridezillas". Watch this show at least once. Try not to be like any of the women in that show. Understand that, despite this, you will become like the women in that show at least a little bit. That's ok. It is expected to some extent. Love and be patient with your bridesmaids. Ask that they love and be patient with you. You may be doing the people you invite to the wedding a favor by allowing them to come to the wedding. However, they are doing you a favor by renting a tux/buying a dress/bringing a present, whatever. It's a wash, in other words.

2. Do your best. Sometimes this will be enough, sometimes it won't. Keep talking.
a_kosmos
Jul. 23rd, 2010 04:26 am (UTC)
Re: Ok...
*applause* for #2!
stratkitten
Jul. 22nd, 2010 06:51 pm (UTC)
Wow! Congratulations!
bateleur
Jul. 22nd, 2010 07:49 pm (UTC)
I'm getting married to my Dr. Sweetheart in seven weeks.

Hurrah! That's fantastic!

Type the first is wedding advice: do you have any bits of wisdom regarding the logistics or other variables of the big day proper?

Do what the two of you want to do. Once the dust settles, you'll be glad you did. (This may seem obvious, but so many people allow assorted relatives and friends a measure of influence over arrangements which they later regret that it seems worth mentioning...)

Type the second is marriage advice: what are your thoughts on marriage?

That it's not for everyone, but it can be a wonderful thing. My 15th anniversary was a couple of weeks ago and - perhaps at odds with the received wisdom - marriage has been great and I'm very glad we did it.
kay_gmd
Jul. 22nd, 2010 08:07 pm (UTC)
Have someone other than you or Dr. S who is responsible for all decisions day of. Make sure they know your preferences, and let them deal with anything that crops up. It makes it soo much easier to focus on what the day is really about.
popfiend
Jul. 22nd, 2010 08:18 pm (UTC)
1.) Enjoy the day. The day belongs to you and him, not anyone else. Don't let it be anyone else's day.

2.) Something will go wrong. It will not be the end of the world.

3.) It's a party. Party. HAVE FUN!

4.) Lots of stuff happens and you may not get to eat like you want to/need. Be prepared for that.

5.) Lots of deep breaths.

Marriage advice: I have none. What works for me may not work so much for you. Each marriage is a unique structure defined by unique people. If something were to happen between me and Lisa and I got married again, that new relationship wouldn't be predicated on the previous one.

Also given that I'm monogamous and you aren't that's also going to skew any advice I may give. So speaking in generalities remember communication, compassion and compromise (http://popfiend.livejournal.com/2262219.html)

Edited at 2010-07-22 08:21 pm (UTC)
electragiselle
Jul. 22nd, 2010 08:32 pm (UTC)
Good Luck!
Besides the communication thing, which is obvious,(I am sure you have that covered, considering your life style...the amount of negotiation/communication in poly relationships seems in my experience to be far superior to that of most conventional relationships) I would like to suggest some simple things I have learned over the years about weddings, from both mine and the numerous ones I have attended.

1. Don't eat/drink too much, or anything different than you would normally eat. You will probably have the nervous stomach and you don't want to exacerbate the problems, especially wearing white.

2. Don't spend to much on the wedding itself. Don't do it. My hubby and I eloped in Vegas 8 years ago in August. The ENTIRE cost; $400! The same year we got married, my husband's brother married his 2nd wife, their wedding was well over $20,000 (they didn't want to tell anyone the true cost) and they were separated within 9 months. (side note, the family hated #2. He is now on #3, and we LOVE her)

3. This 3rd one is very personal and kinda lame. I suggest making sure to follow the "something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue" aphorism. I, being a young and brash when I got married didn't care about that, but my then future sister in law (Justin's other brother's 1st wife...clarification - Justin has 2 brothers, one on wife #2 one on wife #3) said that if I didn't do it I would regret it later. So, while in Vegas, originally to hang out and have fun (not to get married/plan a wedding in 12 hours), she helped me get everything; with the borrowed being a necklace of hers. :) It was very touching, and I am glad she encouraged me to be cheesy. Since then, when weddings come up other people talk about that little poem, I have seen many women lament that they thought it was stupid at the time, but now seem genuinely sad that they didn't do it when they look back. (I should probably tell you though, I am a sucker for pointless traditions that are a throwback to the past in general)

4. Finally don't get caught up in the expectations of those around you. Before making any decisions, especially expensive ones, ask yourself why you are making that choice and who you are making it for. There is nothing wrong with doing something to please someone else, as long as you are aware that is why you are doing it. It is your day.

My $.02

Edited at 2010-07-22 08:33 pm (UTC)
mac_arthur_park
Jul. 22nd, 2010 09:39 pm (UTC)
Congratulations, first of all!

1. Remember that the day is a celebration of your love for each other. Ignore every relative who is going to try to tell you how you "should" be doing things.

2. Remember that every day is a celebration of your love for each other. And those relatives? See above advice.
bodhifox
Jul. 22nd, 2010 10:55 pm (UTC)
Good luck! And regarding marriage, it's a great concept.
kira_snugz
Jul. 23rd, 2010 02:31 am (UTC)
congratulations!

remeber that it is your day. do what you want. and by you i mean you and dr sweetheart.

be prepared for emotion. people will cry. it might even be you.

remember what your favorite things are. try to incorperate them.

don't be afraid to embrace cliche's if thats what you want.
a_kosmos
Jul. 23rd, 2010 04:31 am (UTC)
We eloped, so I don't have much good wedding advice. In addition to the wonderful stuff that everyone else has said, there are three very important words in a marriage. You need to be able to say: "you-were-right" to each other. Saying it liberates you and makes your partner hear that you think about what he says and vice versa.

Congratulations!
bateleur
Jul. 23rd, 2010 12:03 pm (UTC)
It's good advice... even if it did remind me of A Softer World for some reason!
(Anonymous)
Jul. 23rd, 2010 12:16 pm (UTC)
Interesting! I haven't heard of that one.
miyyu
Jul. 23rd, 2010 11:51 am (UTC)
wedding day stuff
I loved my wedding and I wish I could have one every year, but it would get expensive. :) I loved it because we did what we wanted and to hell with tradition and/or what people expected. Everyone got fed, everyone had a good time, and that's what matters. Be genuine and do what it is during the day that makes it meaningful for the two of you. Try to take your time and take it all in because it goes by faster than any other day you can imagine. It's lovely to have everyone you care about in one room so talk to everyone once (which is harder than it sounds). And eat something. I totally forgot to eat and by the end of the night I was ravenous!
antoniotyler
Jul. 23rd, 2010 03:41 pm (UTC)
First, have a wedding day schedule listed. Know what times things are happening, who is supposed to do what, and where people need to be. Give this list to a trusted person who is not shy.

Second, make sure you have a good time. It'll be hectic and there'll be so many people that sometimes you just need to make sure you can go somewhere and breathe.

As far as marriage goes, I'm still relatively new to it. I've found that, because Kimmi and I have been living together for awhile, it didn't feel too different at first. Mostly forgetting to say "wife" instead of "girlfriend" or "fiancee".

The best advice I can give is to promise each other you'll be there when things get rough. It's easy to be someone's companion, spouse or friend when life is good. But when everything is on the rocks, when there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel, that's when truly good people step up to the plate. If you and Dr. Sweetheart are there for each other, you'll do fine.
serpent_star
Jul. 24th, 2010 12:26 am (UTC)
I don't actually know much about weddings, and I often envision myself getting married in Vegas, simply to cut down on costs and all the planning commonly associated with weddings.

I don't think marriage is for everyone (this is not advice, per se, just my opinion on marriage), and I think a lot of people get married for the wrong reasons and then wind up really unhappy. What I know about successful marriages is that they take effort and compromise and personal sacrifice on the part of both people. Sometimes you've got to make your personal agendas and issues second (or third or fourth) priority for the sake of the partnership. Many people are not willing to do this, but lack the self-awareness to recognize this before getting married. I also think too many people get married without knowing their partner well enough, and while this is not necessary a recipe for failure, it reduces the chances of a successful, long-lasting union.

I also feel that more people get divorced nowadays because we no longer have the stigma and taboo surrounding divorce that were more present in our parents' and grandparents' generations. Fewer people are willing to stay in unhappy marriages, and that's not necessarily a bad thing. I don't think this more recent social freedom should ever be a substitute for making the right choices, though.

I'm not sure if I'll ever get married myself, but if I do, I'm not opposed to signing a prenup. I used to get harassed by various relatives about not being on the marriage path. I think some people were just desperate for me to get married and start squeezing out kids, and were shocked to hear that I had no plans to do either. I don't think it's fair to EVER imply that an unmarried person should be, unless that's what that individual wants in life.
angstzeit
Jul. 24th, 2010 05:31 am (UTC)
Happy Birthday!
the_dark_snack
Jul. 24th, 2010 03:14 pm (UTC)
Happy Birthday!
waywardson5
Aug. 16th, 2010 10:12 pm (UTC)
First off, congrats to you both. My wife and I just celebrated our 11th anniversary, and we're in a warm, familiar happiness. There's nothing like the feeling that you are spending time with a best friend, a lover and someone who's got your back, all in one.

(If you haven't guessed, I think marriage can be a wonderful and fulfilling thing. Just be willing to work for it with the thought that it is 100% your responsibility to make it work. If you both take that attitude, you stop keeping score of who's done what and it gets much easier.)

For the day itself, relax, remember this is just a party, and have fun. Your commitment didn't begin on the wedding day, it's just when you show it off to the people who care. I've performed more than a few wedding ceremonies, and the ones with the least drama were always the ones where the "Big Day " mentality was absent. Once or twice I've just signed and witnessed the license at the rehearsal, and that let everyone relax.
Appointing an "aide de camp" helps, too. It might be a pro (a wedding planner), or it might be a friend who is well-organized, supportive and willing to do all that is needed to make things happen as planned. It is best to not make this person the best man or maid of honor, as well. Those people are the groom's and bride's (respectively) emotional support on the day in question, and dividing their attention can lead to more drama.
Most of all, have fun!! Is it a big day? Yes. Is it the best day of your life? Goddess, I hope not! Where does that leave the rest of the marriage? Keep some perspective and enjoy.
rebellibrarian
Oct. 4th, 2010 03:17 pm (UTC)
Hey there - I was wondering if all was good in your post-wedding world. Poly Advice Nurse Forum has a spam entry and another where folks are wondering what happened to you.

I came over here & on FB to see it's been a while since you posted online.

*hugs* hoping you're still off enjoying the honeymoon. :-)
the_dark_snack
Jul. 24th, 2011 01:22 pm (UTC)
Happy Birthday!
the_dark_snack
Jul. 24th, 2013 12:49 pm (UTC)
Happy Birthday!
the_dark_snack
Jul. 24th, 2015 09:57 am (UTC)
Happy Birthday!
the_dark_snack
Jul. 24th, 2016 12:38 pm (UTC)
Happy Birthday!
( 38 comments — Leave a comment )

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