Please help

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CodiBear Posts : 1 Registered: 5/6/10
Please help
Posted: May 22, 2010 10:50 AM

My finance just got word yesterday that he is being deployed to Iraq in 3 weeks. Im devastated but I know we will get through this! We want to get married before he leaves, something small and simple and then have the big wedding or celebration when he gets home. How do we plan the reception/ wedding part? He still wants me to walk down the isle in a white dress and veil, is that how its usually done? How do we word the invites?? Please help I have no idea about what to do for the second part!!


dodgercpkl Posts : 130 Registered: 9/27/09
Re: Please help
Posted: May 22, 2010 12:15 PM Go to message in response to: CodiBear

I'm going to give you different advice which I know won't be the popular opinion on here, and that's fine. My husband and I got married on April 16th, 2010 by civil ceremony. We are having a family/very close friends wedding ceremony (vow renewal officially) on October 15th, 2010 with a big delayed reception the next day for all of our friends and family.

Our story and why/how this came about: My husband is Dutch and we plan to live in the USA, so we needed to go through immigration. We did so via the fiance visa, which, once approved, gives you 90 days to get married. That 90 day period (which went from Apr 15 - Jul 13) falls right at the high time of international travel. My in-laws simply couldn't afford an extra $200 per person for 7 people to fly to California to see the wedding.

We spent alot of time talking to both sides of our families, trying to see if we could make something work with just one wedding, but in the end, couldn't. So since it was very important for his family to see us get married and also very important to my family to see me walk down the aisle, we decided with the approval and support of our families, to have a civil ceremony to satisfy the immigration requirements, and a later family/religious ceremony to celebrate with our families.

I WILL be wearing the poofy nice wedding dress as I walk down the aisle, and my dad WILL be giving me away. We WILL say our wedding vows again, we just won't have a certificate to sign since we are already married. We aren't trying to hide anything from anyone. Everyone invited to either the ceremony and/or reception knows that we are already married and will have been for 6 months.

Both ceremonies are important to me and in the end, I get to marry the most wonderful man in the world not just once, but twice! :)

You need to do what you feel is right for YOU. My advice would be that if you DO have the 2 ceremonies, don't try to hide that you are already married. People do appreciate honesty and most people, regardless of the replies you'll get on here, will probably be understanding and want to help you celebrate your happy day (again)! :D

Oh and as a note, religious ceremonies aren't accepted as legal in parts or maybe all of Europe, so to his family, having 2 ceremonies (one legal and one church) is a common occurance.

p.s. I've sent you a PM. :)

Edited by: dodgercpkl on May 22, 2010 12:17 PM


MagicalMomentsP... Posts : 742 Registered: 3/6/06
Re: Please help
Posted: May 23, 2010 12:51 AM Go to message in response to: CodiBear

Before I start, I'll say this is quite a sensitive topic here. As a wedding professional, I've seen all sorts of weddings. Last weekend, I photographed a vow renewal/wedding. Why was it considered a wedding? Well, when the couple first married 17 years ago, they did it civilly. The couple are from the Philapines and are Catholic. They never had a religious ceremony nor were they considered married under holy sacriment. So 17 years after the civil ceremony, they had a religious exchange of vows. The bride treated it just like any other wedding, complete with white dress, attendants and a big party.

There are two keys here. First, the couple was having a religous committment. Next, the couple paid for this wedding themselves. They didn't expect payment from parents or sponsors.

On the other hand, there are those who do believe you get one chance to walk down the aisle. I've just returned from a nice wedding that was planned in just two weeks. Dress, flowers, decor, dj, photographer, venue, meal, etc... all booked within two weeks. So a nice wedding can be done in a short time. But you will have to remember that not everybody can change their plans on short notice to attend your nuptuals.

Howard Kier, Certified Professional Wedding Photographer

Magical Moments Photography


VšnTillBruden Posts : 353 Registered: 1/16/10
Re: Please help
Posted: May 23, 2010 5:00 AM Go to message in response to: CodiBear

Codi, I'm going to skip the politics that comes with this subject, and just answer your question:

Go find a cute, white dress. Stick your boy in either his dress uniform or a suit, whatever he wishes. Go to the courthouse with your nearest and dearest (though I do believe there is a limit on how many can go with you) and have a courthouse wedding, and go out for dinner afterward. If a courthouse wedding isn't what you're looking for, perhaps a backyard wedding, on Memorial Day? It is coming up, and since people don't need to work, they'll be able to attend on such shorter notice.

DH deploys to Iraq. He comes home.

Then have a welcome home party/delayed reception. I wouldn't call this your big wedding, as a lot of people are under the impression you wed once. A delayed reception is, well, just that. You have the reception, no ceremony at all. You still want some sort of ceremony? Okay. If your fiance still wants you to walk down the aisle to him, there is nothing wrong with that. But don't swap rings. You're already married, and I don't know about you, but personally I would feel a little silly swapping rings for a second time when I've been wearing that ring for X amount of time. If I may come with an alternate suggestion? You could go the popular "re-commitment" vows route, or you could create a time capsule together at the altar in front of your families (symbolizing your relationship for each other), take a unity cocktail/light a candle/etc. etc. etc. I think if you guys said vows, that'd be perfectly fine. And you can still have your white dress/walking down the aisle moment, since your fiance seems so hellbent on it. Just make sure that when you start sending out the invitations for this event, you make it clear that this isn't a wedding, but a commitment ceremony/welcome home party/delayed reception, whatever you decide to call it.

Good luck, and be strong, with your fiance's deployment.

Love me when I least deserve it, because that is when I need it the most. (Swedish proverb)


Athenebrita Posts : 7 Registered: 5/15/10
Re: Please help
Posted: Jun 10, 2010 4:54 PM Go to message in response to: VšnTillBruden

I agree with the lady above me. Have something small now and when he gets back have the big wedding of your dreams. If people complain well, why wait if your in love. My parents told my guy and I to elope then come back for a party.

Apparently I'm still tech unsavy even after classes. I need help with my ticker timeline.


chris42005 Posts : 89 Registered: 4/6/10
Re: Please help
Posted: Jun 10, 2010 7:59 PM Go to message in response to: CodiBear

How long is he going to be deployed? If you are looking at 6mos or shorter than wait for him to come back and do your big wedding then. Longer than that, going ahead and do a court house marriage and when he gets back do a religious ceramony if that is what you want. Do be up front and honest with people that is what you are doing. Good luck with the deployment.


agd1017 Posts : 464 Registered: 9/14/09
Re: Please help
Posted: Jun 10, 2010 8:54 PM Go to message in response to: CodiBear

Honestly, in your situation I would just go to the courthouse and get married. What's more important to you? A big fancy wedding or being married to this man before and while he's overseas? Do what you need to do for the two of you. At the end of the day, whatever will make the both of you comfortable during that very stressful and trying time.

Amanda and Eric

Amanda and Eric



usfbeachbum Posts : 27 Registered: 6/6/10
Re: Please help
Posted: Jun 10, 2010 9:27 PM Go to message in response to: CodiBear

You can have our cake and eat it too!!! At least that's the way I look at it. My husband and I were married because I emigrated to his country. Nothing fancy and no parents (we didnt think it was fair as his were not able to pay the fare) just a trip to the courthouse on Christmas Eve and we were done. I didnt want to live with him or move so far away without being married in the US first. About a year and a bit later we will be married by a priest in a beautiful church with many family/friends.

Do whatever is right for you an your FH.


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