How short is too short?

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FutureLeoBride Posts : 63 Registered: 9/24/08
How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 18, 2009 10:43 AM

I was reading another thread about long engagements, and those girls were talking about having everything done with a year to go and/or getting burnt out long before the wedding actually arrives. I guess my question is the exact opposite: how short is too short? I want a short engagement, so what do you think is reasonable? I know one of the major reasons for a year (ish) engagement is to book a venue, but my venue won't be hard to get. I could probably reserve it for next weekend if I wanted to! I already have my dress because it was my mom's wedding dress, so it will just need some alterations. I don't plan to have more than 2 (maybe 3) bridesmaids, so that shouldn't be too difficult to coordinate. What do you guys think?

Marriage works because they had a shared sense of humor, mutual respect of an awesome depth, faith that they were brought together by a force greater than themselves and a love so unwavering and pure that it is sacred.

  • Forever Odd by Dean Koontz

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 18, 2009 10:47 AM Go to message in response to: FutureLeoBride

Dear FLB,

Ideally, the engagement is a period of discernment. The relationship has been stepped up to a higher level, the couple are "officially" a couple, and they decide if they want to go ahead with the marriage, based on the new experience of being engaged.

That is the typical rationale for a long engagement.

However, if you know you want to marry the guy and he wants to marry you, go for it. What are you doing tomorrow?

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HappyGirl13 Posts : 1,298 Registered: 4/21/08
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 18, 2009 12:05 PM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

Agree with Aunt. How long have you been with your FH? Do you still have things you want to work on together/solve before you get married? Have you met each other's families? My DH and I lived apart before we got engaged, then he moved in soon after--do you already live together or do you want to make sure you have some time living together before you tie the knot? (If you're not living together before you get married for religious reasons, then disregard that question.)

If you and FH feel like you know each other well enough and don't have any issues you feel like you need to resolve beforehand, just go for it. The only thing left to consider would be how elaborate a wedding you want and how much free time you'll have to plan it.

My DH & I were engaged & living together for 6 months before the wedding, BTW, and since no "surprise" issues came up during that time (or since), that was plenty long. Any longer and wedding planning would've driven me bonkers, but that's me.

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myra Posts : 5,550 Registered: 3/28/06
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 18, 2009 1:10 PM Go to message in response to: FutureLeoBride

My engagement was two weeks (we had been together 2 1/2 years when we got married). We decided to move from NJ to California, and to get married before we did. So, planned a cocktail party, catered, for 40 people. It was gorgeous. Then, we went home and did more packing (I sat on the bed in my stripped down bedroom and wrote thank you notes until 2 in the morning---he packed). The wedding was Sunday. We moved on Tuesday. That was almost 34 years ago, so I guess the vows "took," in spite of the rush.
myra at www.classysassyweddings.com

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BenjaminsWife Posts : 1,069 Registered: 1/11/07
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 18, 2009 7:03 PM Go to message in response to: FutureLeoBride

Your engagement can be as short or long as you want it to be.

I defintely do not recommend a long engagement. Our engagement was 2 years and after a year we got burnt out bad. I wasnt even looking forward to the wedding...I was looking forward to the day after when it was all over.


Married 9.20.08

 

 

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jfrankpinell Posts : 59 Registered: 4/7/09
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 18, 2009 7:20 PM Go to message in response to: FutureLeoBride

There ain't no such thing. I heard a couple awhile back saying they were engaged 3 months after they met and got married about 3 months after that. My little Honey and me will be together a total of 2 years when we get married, and we've known each other 6 months. (She's getting her solitaire in Sept.)

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ArtBride Posts : 4,838 Registered: 5/9/07
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 19, 2009 10:28 AM Go to message in response to: FutureLeoBride

As AOTB said, the period of engagement isn't about the time it takes to plan a wedding - it's about making the transition from dating to being married. So the answer depends on the two of you.

Personally, DH and I had been together for 7 years when we got engaged, but we still had a lot of adjusting to do while we were engaged. It wasn't about deciding whether to marry one another - it was more about the practical considerations. We had been living in separate cities for the past three years, so DH needed to find a job in my city, where we had agreed to live. We had to adjust to living together, sharing living expenses, and generally adjust to living with another person again. (I still miss living alone!) And we both had to adjust to our changing levels of independence. Things as stupid as calling if you're going out for happy hour with coworkers - neither of us ever had to do that before, so it took a while to getting used to it. And things like remembering to buy food that the other one likes when you go to the grocery store - we're STILL not quite used to that. DH went to the store the other day and didn't buy a single vegetable! We thought that we'd be better off making as many of these adjustments BEFORE we were married then after - though there's still adjustments to be made after the wedding. It took me a long time to adjust to shared finances. I make more money than DH, so it bothered me at first that I paid more of the bills and he spent more on 'fun' stuff. It took a while for me to get used to the idea that 'I earned it, but it's still BOTH of ours.' And it took him a while to get used to my ideas about saving - but we've come to a good balance.

As far as planning the wedding goes, it really depends on what type of wedding you want and how perfect you want everything to be. We were engaged for just under a year and started planning the wedding about six months before the date we wanted. We spent very little time on wedding stuff. If we had spent more time doing wedding stuff, I'm fully confident that we could have planned the entire wedding in two months. Except for the dress, which took much longer to come in - but I could have gotten another dress if I had needed to.

I wouldn't think 'How long of an engagement do we need?' and choose your date based on the length of your engagement. I'd think about what time of year you want to get married. Say you want a summer wedding. Think about it and decide whether you can plan the wedding you want in a few months, or whether you'd rather do it next year, so you're not rushed.

Anyway, if you're looking for numbers, this is when we did the big stuff:
May 2007: Got engaged
Sept 2007: Ordered my dress
Oct 2007: Booked church and reception venue
Nov 2007: Ordered BM gowns
Jan 2008: Booked florist, ordered invitations
Feb 2008: Booked photographer
Mar 2008: Did mostly everything else
Apr 2008: Wedding

DaisypathWedding Ticker

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FutureLeoBride Posts : 63 Registered: 9/24/08
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 20, 2009 11:01 AM Go to message in response to: HappyGirl13

We met back when we were 17 and dated for about 1.5 years. We were both young and immature, and the timing just wasn't right. We split up (amicably) and went our separate ways for almost 5 years. Fate brought us back together, and we've been dating a little over a year this time and living together for most of it. We don't really have any issues to solve, and we spend a lot of time with each other's families. We're both only children, so we're pretty close to our parents. His parents and mine met each other a couple months ago, and the extended families are getting together for a Memorial Day cookout next month. I really appreciate everyone's feedback, and its definitely answered my question. A short engagement totally seems like the way to go for me. Thanks guys!!


Marriage works because they had a shared sense of humor, mutual respect of an awesome depth, faith that they were brought together by a force greater than themselves and a love so unwavering and pure that it is sacred.
- Forever Odd by Dean Koontz

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NJ4Life Posts : 3,358 Registered: 8/10/07
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 20, 2009 11:29 AM Go to message in response to: FutureLeoBride

If you dont see any reason to wait, then don't. I think you should make sure you give your invited guests enough notice, at least a few weeks. But if you're only planning on having a small number of guests, I guess that wouldn't matter. That would be MY only concern...making sure everyone important could make it on a certain date.

We had a 'short' engagement, just under a year. I don't think I could go any longer than that. We just had to plan around my sister's already planned wedding. That was the only reason why we didn't do it sooner.


New Jersey: We have dumps, bays and cement boots and we know how to use 'em

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Mushaboo Posts : 2,165 Registered: 3/22/08
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 20, 2009 2:20 PM Go to message in response to: FutureLeoBride

FLB- My engagement was 1 short year and 4 long months. FH, now DH, and I had been dating 3 years at the time of engagement. Here are my cons for long engagements:

I am not a pomp and circumstance bride. I didn't want a fancy bridal shower. DH and I didn't want an engagement party. We just saw it as a waste of money since there are a lot of people out there having $$ problems. We didn't want people blowing money on us for parties. So, having a long engagement was pointless for the "celebration" part.

I had all the planning done in 6 months. I had all the decorations made in 8 months. I had all our vendors at 4 months. I was bored with the wedding after the year mark. I got annoyed more and more every day when people would ask me how the planning was going. The word fiance made my ears bleed. I hated it. I just wanted to get married.

Now the pros:

ooking everything so far in advance gave us a lot of time to pay for everything. Our wedding was 80% paid off by the time the day arrived. So, we never put ourselves under financial strain.

I changed my mind a few (more like 100) times on flowers, dresses, etc so having over a year to plan allowed me to change my mind as many times as I wanted without panicking.

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Wedding pics at www.mywedding.com/robertandginger

 

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luckymebride Posts : 125 Registered: 12/7/08
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 20, 2009 7:24 PM Go to message in response to: FutureLeoBride

I personally would want a shorter engagement too. I guess depending on each couple, you just have to make sure you do the right thing. As long as you and your FH are truly ready for a marriage, I don't really see the point of having a long engagement unless is due to other reasons like, financial, emotional, family, health, school, works, age.....etc. etc.

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FutureLeoBride Posts : 63 Registered: 9/24/08
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 20, 2009 9:31 PM Go to message in response to: luckymebride

I guess my opinion is that all those issues (financial, emotional, family, health, school, works, age, etc) need to be worked out before getting engaged. I'm not a big fan of, "we're 18 and engaged, but we won't get married until 2018 when we both have our PhDs." You know what I mean... just wait to get engaged! I don't want to stress myself by smashing all the planning in 3 weeks, but I don't want to drag it out and get irritated with it. I have a few plans and ideas in my head, so it sounds like 6 months or so would be plenty of time.

Marriage works because they had a shared sense of humor, mutual respect of an awesome depth, faith that they were brought together by a force greater than themselves and a love so unwavering and pure that it is sacred.
- Forever Odd by Dean Koontz

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cyndi33 Posts : 2,585 Registered: 1/3/07
Re: How short is too short?
Posted: Apr 21, 2009 9:44 AM Go to message in response to: FutureLeoBride

Six months was what we had, and it was great for us. We booked the venue and photographer right away, and I found my dress off the rack so it only had to be altered, but you already have your dress, right? BM dresses I found in Macys but even if you order them it is possible to get them from places who are faster than others. We had to have ours either over spring break or in the summer because we wanted a honeymoon and had kids in school. So, DH very much did not want to wait an additional 3 months which is how we ended up with a fairly short engagement.

Given all you've told us, I am sure about six months would be just fine for you guys.

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