I’m going to say something unpopular and a bit controversial here: I hate weddings.
Yes, you read that right. I hate weddings.
Here are my reasons:
- Weddings are flippin’ expensive. And for what? One day?? Why are people starting their life in debt over a party? Someone else is paying, you say? Then give them the money for a house, a reliable vehicle, new furniture, or a life changing experience.
- They’re all the same–sorry, but it’s true. Even the ones that seem original aren’t really that different.
- They tend to bring out the worst in people. The joining of two families is an emotional day for everyone directly involved. I am not overlooking that. However, it can also bring a lot of issues to the surface for both the couple, their families, their guests: separation issues, attachments, fears, doubts, and worst of all: expectations and disappointment.
- Wedding parties make you rank your friends in order. When I was a little girl I didn’t even like saying I had best friends because I didn’t like the idea that one friend was better than the other. So brides are asked to pick the most important people, put them in order from best to worst, tell them what to wear and how to spend their money for the next year? I’m calling BS!
Sure, I dreamed of my own wedding when I was a little girl. I envisioned a big party, me in a big white dress with professionally done hair and makeup, and everyone eating lobster**.
Then I grew up. And had to pay for stuff.
Please do not be confused. I don’t hate the idea of marriage and the union of families. I’m not afraid of love and I cherish the commitment two people are making to each other. But because I recognize that this is such a momentous step and you’re committing to each other for a lifetime–I think it’s just too personal to have an 150-200 people there! I feel the good stuff gets lost in the circus that is a wedding.
Our Wedding Plans
When it came time for us to plan our wedding, I had sort of forced our hands into a small wedding when I purchased our home away from home. We were also renovating our first home on top of that! We also knew for a long time that if we had a big wedding, the guest list would be well over 200 people–and most of that was family! We were also paying for our wedding ourselves.
We planned a small wedding with just immediate family in Old Orchard Beach, Maine. Then we booked a venue to have a big BBQ bash back in Massachusetts to have all our friends and family join us in the fall. Everyone wins, right?!
…and six months before our wedding, I lost my job.
So, Mr. Geek was now paying for the entire wedding himself. What. the. fudge.
We cancelled the big bash and went full speed ahead with the small intimate wedding in Old Orchard Beach planning to revisit the big reception at a later date.
Well, that big reception never happened–and we’re perfectly okay with it.
Although this may not have been the original plan, I wholeheartedly recommend small weddings. In fact, many of my friends have eloped or had a small intimate and said it was the best decision they ever made.
However, it didn’t come completely without challenges.
Things to Remember When Having a Small Wedding
I think this advice can connect to anyone planning a wedding–but since we had a small wedding, I don’t know what planning a big wedding is like (and I hope I never will!).
Some people won’t “get it.”
Anytime someone goes against the grain, there will be some backlash. I know I got a lot of questions like, “Well, who are your bridesmaids? What kind of flowers will you have?” then they looked at me shocked when I said I didn’t have any, bridesmaids or flowers (again, I don’t like the idea of ranking your friends and flowers die–just a waste of money in my eyes). We were doing this our way and we LOVED IT!
Sometimes when people are confronted with something unfamiliar to them, their fear of the unknown overcomes them without realizing it. There are people out there that will see your original, unconventional choices as a threat. It may be perceived as a threat to their comfort zone, traditions, or religion. It may also be a threat to their own sense of confidence because maybe they aren’t brave enough to go against convention themselves.
On sensitive days, this might seem hurtful and make you think someone is not accepting your vision. On even more sensitive days, you might think this is someone doubting your pending marriage entirely. Just remember, your wedding is not your marriage. Have faith and stay the course. In many ways this might be the first “adult” decision that you are making in your lifetime–so let others know who you are as a couple! Stand in your convictions unshaken and know that you are making the right choice for you and your partner. If you are confident in your heart that this decision aligns with both you and your future spouse’s beliefs, be comforted with that.
If people are going to hold a grudge, that’s more telling about them than it is about us. And this commitment we made is going to last a lifetime–so that’s a long time to be miserable about missing a party!
There will be hurt feelings–and you need to be okay with that.
I know Mr. Geek and I broke some hearts because people we truly cared about (and cared about us!) were not invited to the wedding. I also know we had guests present at our wedding that were upset certain people were not invited. When this was presented to me, I only had one answer:
Time heals all wounds.
Mr. Geek and I also hope to be parents one day. I also reminded them that once our first little baby is born, no one is going to blurt out, “Cute kid, but I wasn’t invited to the wedding!” (At least I really hope not).
The passing of time will allow people to see the beautiful marriage you have created or are working on creating. Children may come into the picture. Time passing and reflection will help people realize, it was just one party out of so many future gatherings of family and friends.
Your guests will have direct access to you, the couple, at all times.
It wasn’t until I was talking about the wedding with my cousin (who was not in attendance) that I realized this one. The typical emotional stress did come along with managing an event–but I struggled with the minutia of the evening.
For example, Josh and I typed out the entire itinerary for the weekend, including the wedding day schedule, and placed it all in the Maine-themed welcome baskets for each person. I thought it would be a breeze! Everyone would know where they were going and where they needed to be at what time.
The wedding ceremony was listed at 5pm.
“So, do we need to be at the restaurant for 5pm? Or does it start at 5pm? How are you getting there? How am I getting there? Should we all ride together?”
The questions were overwhelming and, frankly, annoying!
My cousin, a bride to be this fall, pointed out to me that most people wouldn’t do this at a big wedding because they wouldn’t dare stress out the bride and groom on their big day. She thinks we only had 14 people, maybe they lost their sense of decorum. Again, this might have been their fear kicking in because it was so out of the realm of what was typical for them at weddings.
Overall, our wedding was the perfect day and I would not change a thing. Although this wedding-hater would still highly recommend eloping or a small ceremony, couples have to do what is best for them. At the end of the day a wedding is the beginning of a couple’s life together and needs to be celebrated exactly how they want to celebrate it.
**Side note: We still ate lobster on our wedding day. Read about it here: