2.06.2012

Defeating the Wedding Monster

I have two friends getting married this year. I am in both weddings. Let me preface this post by saying I am extremely happy for them both; furthermore, I know both couples really well, so they are going to be very fun weddings. But I have to get a few things off my chest...

When did weddings become such a monster? By monster, I mean an all-consuming, bank-depleting, brain-washing, fire-breathing animal that torches everything in sight?

That may have been a bit dramatic...But here's my beef with weddings:

1. They are f***ing overpriced. Venues, flowers, wedding dresses, bridesmaids dresses, presents, showers, pre-parties before the main event, more dresses, more presents = SUFFOCATION. Couples get so wrapped up in the fantasy of the big day, they forget about the reality of their bank account.

2. They are forceful in their traditions. Not wearing something blue on the big day? Sacrilegious! Thinking of skipping the wedding shower? You can't, that's a major event! Don't want to buy a big cake? No, sorry, you HAVE to...because, we said so.

WHEN did it get like this? WHERE did all these "traditions" come from? And why does everyone insist on following such a Nazi list to a tee? You know, the list:
  • Engagement Party
  • Engagement Photos
  • Save-the-Dates
  • Wedding Shower
  • The Perfect Invitation
  • Bachelorette Party
  • Registry
  • Venue
  • The Perfect Dress
  • The Perfect Bridesmaids Dresses
  • The Perfect Flowers
  • The "Best Day of Your Life"
Which brings me to my next point...

3. Everything has to be "perfect." People forget something they know quite well when planning for weddings--life is not perfect. Nothing goes exactly as planned. NOTHING IS PERFECT!!!! But time and time again, I see chicks freaking out that things are not going swimmingly. These women spend so much time and effort focusing on the "big day," they almost have a mental breakdown when one hair is out of place. That's too much pressure and stress for my liking!

***

I know I sound like a cynical, anti-wedding freak right at the moment. But remember, this is more of a vent session. I actually quite like weddings, if done the right way. When planning a wedding, here's what I think:

  1. Do what you want, not what everyone else tells you to do. If you're big on all the traditions...go for it! But if all these pesky traditions are stressing you out, why have them? Who said professional engagement photos are a must? Who said you MUST send out save the dates? DO WHAT YOU WANT TO DO.
  2. Try not to put a gazillion expectations on one freakin' day. This takes some discipline and effort on your part, but realize that you're going to have much more fun if you're not expecting perfection.
  3. Be aware of the monster. When things get overwhelming, make sure to question everything. Remember that you are dealing with a money-making industry persuading you to buy more. You are a human who is capable of philosophy and great intellect; you are not a drone. Cut out the things you don't need.
I'm sure you've figured out that I'm not a big wedding kind of girl. I'm a traveling gal! If I ever get married, I'm more apt to peace out for a cool destination wedding with immediate family--no rules, no regulations, and no matchy-matchy brisdemaids dresses. This is my personality, and my wedding would be sure to reflect it. I've had some friends, assuming that they know better, tell me "Well I will make sure you have more at your wedding!" No you won't...because that's not what I want, woman! (I also get really peeved when girls insist on talking about hypothetical weddings with me, when I don't have said groom on the horizon).

Your wedding should reflect your personality, whether it's a huge extravaganza, or no wedding at all. Don't let anyone--friends, the industry, the wedding monster--persuade you differently.

10 comments:

  1. I agree that often couples are more worried about the wedding than the marriage. All those "traditions" can be fun, but when they're done because you HAVE to and not because you want to things can get out of hand quickly.

    You're wise to focus on the groom before planning the wedding. After all, he'll have some say in the day too!!

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  2. This is a number one complaint amongst my friends and myself, especially us single ones because we are expected to spend just as much as a couple yet don't reap any of the same benefits...since we're single! I love being single but it would be nice to get some acknowledgment in the form of gifts for not jumping into a huge mistake like marriage! Hahaha!!

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  3. You are so right! While about ten years ago, I would've sworn it's an American thing, I now realized that Austrian Brides are just the same.

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  4. It is a disease that is infecting the world...

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  5. Apologies in advance for a comment longer than your post.

    Weddings can be and often are very personal and special events for the couple and their friends and family. Some of my most awesome memories come from weddings.
    Weddings can also be dreadful, Manila Death March-style nightmares. I think there's a couple of things to blame.

    One is friends and family (mainly family) pressuring the couple to do things "their" way. Aunt Lilly who HAS to sit at the main table. George who HAS to be a groomsman (and not be paired with Jessica, who he can't stand). Mom, who INSISTS on a separate "salad course." The wedding winds up being about keeping certain people from pouting, instead of celebrating a life-long partnering.

    The other is the wedding "industry." No other economic endeavor has so much rip off. A cake goes from $20 to $2,000 because it has more curly-Q's. Stupid flowers require a mortgage because they're "arranged." Tuxedos, caterers, rehearsal dinners, reception halls, churches, musicians/DJs, bridal salons...all at prices the Defense Department thinks are gouging. Two biggest screw jobs in life-the prices of weddings and funerals. At least with the latter you can stick someone else with the tab.

    Oh, and couples who write their own vows. Once out of a million weddings have I encoutered self-written vows that didn't prompt crazy, Loony Tunes eye-rolling. People, "I love you and think you're awesome" is not a vow.

    Otherwise, I totally love weddings. Cake, champagne, dancing, women in a good mood. Say no more.

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  6. i love this. i really think we get too wrapped up in the "perfect day" nowadays. i blame tlc. people forget that your wedding is for YOU not everyone else.

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  7. First, props to chris reeder. You crack me up and I totally agree with you.

    That being said, I know that I'm likely to become a Bridezilla (despite that I really don't want to be one) whenever the big day arrives. Thus, Ash, I fully expect you to be at my side with a paper bag for me to breathe into.

    And possibly to slap me in the face. (But watch the hair and makeup!) ;)

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  8. Agreed!

    Always one quick to pull a movie reference: Reminds me of the movie Father of the Bride ... the remake with Steve Martin. "A cake, Franck, is made of flour and water. My first car didn't cost $1200."

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  9. God Bless You and your independence. I don't know how many times my family tries to shove marriage down my throat. I don't like tradition forced upon me when it is hardly accepted and respected.

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  10. I agree with this post. And I'm enjoying reading the comments.

    Christina @ Mens Tennis Shoes

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