- Gender and Relationships
How Important are Wedding Traditions to You?
As it is now September, wedding season is officially coming to a close. Our society tends to flock to get married in the warmer months because it is more traditional, and let's face it, no one wants to freeze their butt off taking the photos outside in the middle of January. After going to my fair share of weddings and seeing more than enough romantic comedies, I have come to some of my own conclusions regarding wedding traditions.
Maybe it's because I'm an Aquarius woman, and we generally hate conforming to society's traditions, but I just don't see what the big deal is with weddings. I understand that it's one of the most important days of a woman's life, but some things about it just don't make sense to me. For instance, I like nice things just as much as the next girl, but the color of the table cloths and napkins just doesn't hold much interest for me. And when they start talking about the centerpieces I start to drift off and my attention wanders. It's not that I don't like a nicely decorated table, I just don't feel like it makes much of a difference in the kind of life I'm going to have if the tablecloths are cream or ivory. Maybe that's just me though.
Most women have been dreaming about their wedding day since they were little girls playing pretend with their friends in the backyard. I wasn't one of those little girls. I don't remember ever pretending to get married or dreaming of that day in childlike wonder (pun intended). That was just not one of the things I thought about as a child. Growing up and seeing the wedding culture practically shoved down our throats by society, I did start to notice it, yet it still didn't interest me that much. For me, I always dreamed about finding the right guy rather than planning my wedding. I guess I figured having the right guy everyday was more important than planning one day with just any guy.
Wedding planning is such a personal choice for every engaged couple to make together. It's just sad to see people giving into having big weddings because they feel that's what's expected of them. It's like if you don't have a big wedding, especially for women, like somehow you're missing out on something great. The average cost of a wedding in the United States is $30,000 and many people go as far as to get in a lot of debt just to pay for a wedding they really can't afford just to show to the world that they're getting married. It's probably not a great idea to start your married life together in debt and what's more is that if you're going to spend a lot of money, wouldn't it be put to much better use if you put it towards a honeymoon vacation around the world? That's probably going to be more memorable and will broaden your horizons much more than one day that you spend all your money on and then have no honeymoon to actually start your life together on a sweet note. That just makes more sense to me.
The other thing about weddings that baffles me is how people can spend a year or more planning it. Seriously, it takes that long to organize one day with all the venues, save the date cards, dresses, bridesmaids, and all the other unnecessary traditions. To an extent, I understand how important the dress is to the bride. That's one wedding tradition that I actually would honor, but I still wouldn't want to wait six months to a year for it to be custom sewed for me. A lot of things could change in a year like your weight and possibly a pregnancy and it just seems like too long to wait for a dress. I could see myself going to a bridal store and picking a dress a month or two before the wedding and taking it home the same day without all the extra drama of fittings and measurements. Maybe I'm just an impatient person, but I like things done right the first time and then just be done with it. Got the dress, got the shoes, what's next on the list?
Then there's the whole issue of bridemaids that stirs up a lot of drama in the wedding planning process. Some girls just can't wait to be bridesmaids and feelings get hurt when they aren't chosen and friendships become strained. Most girls though, don't care much about being bridesmaids and actually try to avoid it when they can. Again, it's a personal choice that's made by the bride according to her preference, but sometimes you just can't help but comment because it becomes ridiculous. I understand having a couple of bridesmaids who have been your best friends your whole life, but ten?! Just why? Nobody needs ten bridesmaids and in turn ten groomsmen because it starts looking like a circus. Imagine how stressful it is getting everybody ready on the big day. It's seriously like orchestrating a play. Places everyone! Hey you get back in line!
Guest lists ranging in the couple hundred also deserve some discussion. I don't think anybody knows 500 people on a first name basis in their everyday lives. Even divided, 250 each for the bride and groom is excessive in my opinion. I mean do you really care if your future husband's cousin's friend's sister comes. I'm guessing no. And more people equals more stress trying to place everyone on the seating charts because god forbid Aunt Susan sits next to Uncle Tom, that's drama waiting to happen. I feel like a wedding, being the celebration of love between two people, is a personal and intimate thing so the only people who really belong there are the closest people in your life who matter the most to you. An intimate wedding of 20 sounds much better than 500 of our closest acquaintances.
I also respect people who choose to elope in a court house or in Las Vegas. I think they're badasses for not conforming to society's rules and just getting married for the sake of getting married. They don't have anything to prove to anybody because they love each other and that's all that really matters. One or two witnesses, the day after tomorrow? And set! No drama and no waiting. And if down the road they decide they do want to have a traditional wedding ceremony, they can always have one for their five, ten, or any other year anniversary. They're not missing out on anything this way. They can have their cake and eat it too. Right now.
To me, the simpler everything is, the better. I like to keep some wedding traditions but in a way that is entirely my own. The engagement ring is a symbol of your love. It doesn't really matter the size or carat as long as it's from the right person. I think the white dress is important, but the excessive bridesmaids can go. Keep the wedding cake, but thinking about the color of the tablecloths and napkins isn't appealing to me. The bride gets a bouquet to carry of course, but I don't see the point in getting a million flowers for the reception. Getting married in a little white church? Too traditional. I'd rather do it on a mountain or a beach and turn it into a destination wedding with 20 of my closest friends and family. Bonus? We can start the honeymoon right then and there, no more traveling required. Planning for a year so every little detail is just right? I have no patience for that to be honest. I'd rather plan everything in a month or two and get married and start our life together faster. Why wait?
So many brides get so overwhelmed with the wedding details that they turn into bridezilla and this scares the bridemaids and grooms because they start to see a side of somebody they never have before. This is all because it's very stressful to plan a wedding, which is why it takes most people a year or more. There's so much involved and so many people to call that your head starts hurting just thinking about it. Some women get so swept up in the wedding that they forget that a marriage is not really about that. A wedding is just one day of your life. A marriage is supposed to be forever. The appeal of a wedding should have no influence whatsoever on your desire to get married in the first place. A wedding is just supposed to be a celebration of your love together that you want to share with the people closest to you. If it's causing so much stress and anxiety in your life, maybe it's time to reconsider where your priorities are. And it's important not to forget that your groom also should have an opinion on what type of wedding you have because it's his wedding too. Many brides tend to overlook this important fact and completely disregard what their future husbands want. To be fair, most men could really care less as long as they have their tux and bride, but some men do want to have a say in the planning and it's only right that they do.
Weddings are important, but so is love which is the reason behind them in the first place, Don't get so caught up in planning the perfect wedding and forget to pay attention to the person who is your future spouse. When looking back on your big day you're going to remember the important things and not the small details like the color of the champagne flutes. It's about the significant stuff like how big your smile was when the photographer caught you during your first kiss as man and wife. Or when the camera snapped the look of complete amazement when the groom first saw you walking down the aisle in your wedding dress. Those are the moments that are going to stand out in your mind when you think back on this day, and those are the moments that deserve the most attention. Oh and then they lived happily ever after. The end.
What are your wedding preferences?
All of Me by John Legend
© 2016 GreenEyes1607