wedding woes

June 12, 2011 § 21 Comments

I will say it.  I think I have the blues.  I spent an entire Saturday afternoon wallowing in bed.  Forty-two days into engagement, most women are thrust by mystical powers into planning their fantastical, magical day.  Nope.  Not I.  I wallow in bed.  The big question is why.  And here’s a very itty bitty, whispered, modicum of an answer that no one wants to hear — I just want to elope.  Plainly, simply, I do.  No amount of crafting can cure this ailment.

One very distressing reality is becoming more apparent as the days progress — having any type of wedding would cause a lot of people to feel excluded.  So, if I cannot choose who to include, I want to exclude everyone (I’m an all-or-nothing type of gal).

This is the obstacle we face — the important people in our life are spread across the globe.  I am in Toronto.  He is in California.  My parents are in Michigan.  His parents are in Istanbul.  Only a handful of my relatives are in Toronto, less than 20% in Michigan and scattered across the US, the majority in Manila.  100% of his relatives are in Istanbul.  All of the friends I’ve made over the past two decades are in Toronto.  His friends are across Turkey and a small handful in the US.

It is a logistical nightmare.  Where in the world would be fair?  How do we choose to have a wedding in Istanbul only to have the bulk of my relatives feel excluded, or a wedding in Toronto or the US or Manila and in turn make his feel excluded?  How do I oblige anyone, family or friend, to travel across the globe (including all neutral ground) merely to watch us get hitched?  The request is so unwarranted.  And that is precisely why I don’t want to do any inviting, and why I have spent the entirety of a Saturday afternoon feeling decidedly miserable.

No matter the contrary, almost all weddings are a people-pleasing production.  The truth is, O.T. may likely never be forgiven for eloping.  For this reason, he is up for the challenge of pleasing and of having two weddings, in Istanbul and Manila.  But, not only would that be a financial nightmare, that would mean we would have segregated weddings for our respective sides of the family and in many ways, that option is more alienating than choosing one city over the other.  What other choices do we have left?

What makes the decision process even more arduous is I cannot stop my mind from rampantly wandering off to a fantasyland of wedding DIY.  My mind has somehow dispelled my compulsions to craft for craft’s sake on this here blog.  Instead, my mind has been inundated with countless crazy cool ideas for world-travel-themed wedding invitations, favor boxes, centerpieces, and crafty décor — everything I long to make with my very hands — all of which I cannot really accomplish unless we have a wedding.  I have poured my creative soul in designing all forms of paper paraphernalia for brides for nearly the past half a decade — how could I not do my very own?!? And am I left to fashion a big white dress within the confines of a bridal store??

Wearing White by Vera Wang at David's Bridal (a great dress for US$1,400, however, not quite what I would wear, whether or not I elope).

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§ 21 Responses to wedding woes

  • Melanie says:

    My husband an I eloped. Twelve years ago, just before destination weddings became really cool. We also chronicled our wedding planning and honeymoon pocs on a web site— before that became the thing to do. We got married in Switzerland (a neutral country) and then rented a car and honeymooned through Europe. Completely amazing. When we got back to the states, my family threw a reception for us (no one cares about the wedding anyway, I told myself.). I felt really guilty about not having the “normal” wedding, but I/we are SO GLAD we did it! We have zero regrets. It was the best decision we ever made. We were smart and hired a great photographer and videographer for our ceremony. I edited the video as soon as we got home and we played it at the reception before the DJ announced us. As we walked up a path towards the camera, it faded to black and we walked in to a standing ovation at the reception. So, in a nutshell, if you ever want advice about eloping, call me!

  • Is money an issue? If not then invite your immediate relatives, fly them to a meeting place, have a small wedding, record the event and share it with family and friends some way. You guys decide. I think donating money to a favorite charity and asking friends and family to do the same instead of gift giving might be unue. You and your fiance must make a decision together. Write down pros and cons of small wedding, big wedding, or no wedding and move on. Photos are a must regardless. Journaling is important. I love the ideas from the comment above mine. Sweet ideas. Good luck and stay true to what your heart says.

  • What does ‘unue’ mean, as mispspelled in my former comment? UNIQUE ….. It all must be unique, whatever you both decide.

  • Suzi says:

    Your are a creative thinker – think technology! Have “Wedding Nodes” established were needed and install some technology like Skype. Have your private wedding ceremony broadcasted to the “Wedding Nodes” so everyone can watch. Then let the party get started. Again technology would transmit the event to one and all, and between your “Wedding Nodes” full of family and friends around the world. Have each “Wedding Node”, as well as yourselves, take lots of photo of wedding, party, maybe even the Honeymoon, and post them on a website (don’t forget the captions) for all to see. Well, it was just my thoughts on a solution.

    Decades ago, as a new mother, my baby’s doctor gave me this prescription for horrible cough my son had: 1 Tablespoon lemon juice mix with 1 Tablespoon of honey and shot of whiskey on the side. Give the child a teaspoon of the lemon and honey mixture and the mother downs the whiskey. It worked amazingly well. I still use that honey and lemon mixture on sick “babies.” Maybe you should try my doctor’s prescription, too .

  • Misty says:

    I agree with Melanie. You can have a destination wedding. My brother-in law had a destination wedding that we could not afford to go to….but the videographer actually loaded the wedding onto the internet as they were getting married. It was still nice to be able to share in their day.
    My husband and I had a very casual backyard wedding. It was still very pretty and elegant, but we were able to invite as many people as we wanted. We kinda fashioned our wedding off of the Young’s wedding here.

  • Mary says:

    Don’t elope, just have a destination wedding. You choose a vacation spot, send out the invitations and those that attend take care of their own expenses. I had another Toronto friend who did it this year, she made most of her own wedding crafts and took them to Mexico with her, (her family brought some in their luggage too). Problem solved. Now get outside and enjoy Woofstock by St. Lawrence Market. 🙂

  • nancy connelly says:

    Do what your heart is telling you – elope

  • You two are the ones getting married so don’t let anyone else tell you what to do. Love the suggestions above! I too thought that you could have everyone be “present” with technology no matter where or how you decide to get married. You can always craft wedding favors and send them to people across the globe and since your wedding is probably going to be kind of small “in person” you could probably craft most of what is needed for it. The most important thing is just that you and husband to be are in agreement or it might come back to bite you later.
    How about a “honeymoon” where you visit all the places you have family or friends and have separate receptions/parties where you play your wedding video? Do what works for you. Good luck!

  • Juliet A says:

    Elope. People may make disappointing noises, but in reality, they will be relieved. Weddings are not really as fun as they are hyped to be.

  • Anonymous says:

    ELOPE! I wish I had the 1st time I got married – instead had a regular wedding – it sucked but lasted 10 yrs. The 2nd time I got married (now going on 13 yrs) it was me & hubby at a little chapel and we left the dog in the truck – no wedding dresses or fancy clothes & saved all that money and did a summer long road trip. A gal at work just got married on the beach – dragged her wedding dress all over the sand and got married in bare feet. The next weekend they had a big party at her house and she went down the slip ‘n slide in her wedding dress. Good luck in whatever you decide.

  • RazMaTaz says:

    Remember this is your wedding and you need to do what is best for the BOTH of you. I only had three months to put our wedding together and even then I thought it was too much time to plan a wedding. Back then we did not have the technology you have today.(We’ve been married over a decade) So use it to your advantage.

  • selaphobia says:

    I agree with the skype comment above. You can choose exactly where you want your wedding to be, allow those who wish to be there in person to fly themselves there, and then include everyone else via Skype – or some kind of live podcast.

    If you don’t feel the Skype or podcast is right for you, then elope – but hire a photographer for the whole process. Then put together a photo-book (through someplace like shutterfly) that pieces together the important photos & moments of the day with both of your commentaries (possibly even a page that has your actual vows printed on it). You can then have the book printed & shipped to your family members so that they still feel included & have a memento from the day. if you want extra-credit family bonus points, create a combined family tree to include in the book someplace, to acknowledge the significance that your wedding day had on the entire family.

  • angela p says:

    11 years ago, we eloped, for many of the same reasons you’re debating…my parents were hurt, so we had a small reception the next summer in my hometown…everyone’s happy now and I’m so glad we did it the way we did!

    Trust your gut…it’s YOUR day, shared with your soon to be husband…everyone else is optional!

  • Nikki F. says:

    We had the same problem when we married 5 years ago. We ended up planning our wedding the day after a holiday and made it on a fun location so that everyone that attended ended up have a mini vacation. Surprisingly more people RSVP’ed then we thought would and we all had a good time.

  • Ann says:

    I’ve worked with many brides & I have to say, yes, some may do it for show, but there are that select few who wants to celebrate in a way that is truly meaningful to them. It’s all in your attitude towards the wedding planning. Don’t stress yourself out and focus so much on the Wedding day itself. The important thing is what comes after the wedding…your life together with your husband. The planning should just be the fun journey towards that day. You are very creative and I can see you having a lot of fun planning and making it unique occasion:)

  • traci says:

    My husband and I faced a similar issue so we did a mix, we got married in vegas. Immediate family was invited and everyone got a vacation out of the trip. It was perfect for us, simple, quick and we didn’t feel like we were forced to entertain people. When my husband first suggested vegas I was dead set against it but when I added up the cost of a wedding and realized that I really didn’t care for the actual huge event, I just wanted to get married, I opened up to the idea. We got married in the Mandalay Bay chapel which is actually really classy, doesn’t have a stitch of neon. In the end, I am super happy with our decision. My family was able to be there, I wasn’t stressed out in the least and we just honeymooned in vegas.

  • cg says:

    Wow, I feel ya! When we decided to get married, we told our moms that we just wanted a BBQ. Um, that was not the right answer! I wish someone had told me how stressful planning a wedding is; I felt very alone. Yes, I spent some days in bed. The wedding was wonderful, but in retrospect I think that just eloping and then having a party would be just as good…save that money for a 10th anniversary blowout! That being said, if you have a good support network that helps. My cousin got married in Vegas, and that was a lot of fun.
    Love your blog — I’m blown away by your make-you-own-stamps idea, which I saw on CRAFT. I’ll be following your wonderful work!

  • I understand completely. My husband and I went through a lot of the same questioning before we ultimately decided to elope. If you’re interested, I wrote about what we chose to do on my blog:

    Ultimately, I hope you’re able to find a solution that feels just right for the two of you. Warm wishes and congratulations!

    P.S. I loved your recent post on CRAFT for DIY clear stamps.

  • girlkae says:

    I was in the same place 18 months ago. Everyone around me was more excited for my wedding that I (or my fiance were). Truth is, we were going down the track of a people pleasing affair, making sure that everyone but us had the time of their lives.
    Fast forward a few months, and we cancelled all the arrangements, and wen for a destination wedding instead. We can still invite the 400 expected invitees, but we will only get the ones that truly want to be there (and who we want there).
    It’s been a much better ride since then and with three months to go, we can’t wait! Hope you get the excited feeling someway or another 🙂

  • […] of gossip traversing the cubicles (as they are mostly ill-intended).  I don’t mull over my upcoming wedding (When is that?  Did I get the memo?).  I just focus on my mind as though it were a white canvas, […]

  • Andraya says:

    What a dilemma! I feel for you.
    We eloped 25 years ago…and loved it. We flew to Cuba and were married by a Spanish speaking female judge…and then totally enjoyed another two weeks of a great honeymoon. No stress – no cranky relatives…just us! We had special certificates of our marriage license made for our parents and had a big party when we got home. No regrets at all.
    Now we work in the wedding industry as non-denominational ministers and marry all kinds of folks. Big weddings can be a logistical nightmare with lots of stress…and very expensive.
    The more couples I marry, the more I am drawn to the conclusion that a marriage is between the couple – the bride and groom – it is their special day and should be done in the manner that is most meaningful to them. It is their commitment to each other…period.
    Don’t let anyone tell you what you should do….go by the feeling in your gut. Do what you and your fiancé want. Ultimately it will be the right thing.
    Blessings on your future…
    Stratford, Ontario

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