Don't want a wedding - am I alone?

Online Users: 0 guest(s), 0 user(s). Replies: 41

RockChalkChick Posts : 48 Registered: 12/27/06
Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Dec 27, 2006 5:03 PM

I realize most people on here are in the middle of and excited about planning an amazing wedding, whether expecting it to be the "best day of her life" or just one heck of a good party. And I definitely am happy for those who are - I've helped friends plan weddings over the last few years and enjoy helping them see their plans pan out.

But, that's just not me. I've never daydreamed about my "perfect wedding" or browsed through bridal catalogs looking for ideas. I've been happy to be part of my friends' weddings and glad they got "their day" just the way they want it, but I can't even begin to think of a wedding party or pick a date or location or do any of the first-step planning stuff without freaking out. I just don't care about any of the whole "wedding" stuff and when I do have to think about it I just start to panic.

Part of this is tied to a public-speaking/performance anxiety that's become worse over the years - I can't stand the thought of being the center of attention. Add on the fact that my family are judgemental gossip-hounds (who I love dearly, but who love to nitpick every detail of an event apart for sheer entertainment), and I really have no desire to hold a big fancy wedding and wear a poofy white dress or any of it. I just get paranoid to think of everyone staring at me or being "the bride" or any of it. If I had my way, I'd just jump straight from dating to married without any formality other than the paperwork - I don't have any major worries about BEING married to my great fiance; it's the GETTING married that scares the heck out of me!

But, my guy wants a big wedding with all the friends and families. And I know my family would be hurt if they weren't present, even if I explain how uncomfortable it makes me to be the center of attention. And there's no chance of a "small" wedding if ANY family is involved (my "immediate" family numbers about 90, just including siblings/aunts/uncles/etc). So, I feel trapped.

Anyone else feel this way? Any advice on how to delegate and divide up the work so I don't feel like I've got such a massive weight on my head? Any chance I can just boot it all to my guy and make him do all the planning? (Unfortunately, I know the answer to this - he's tried to book a few appointments and they act like he's crazy for not having "the Bride" involved, since "she" needs everything her way). There's got to be a way to keep things low-key without seeming tacky, to stick to the middle-ground somewhere between the big expensive wedding he wants and the non-wedding I want, but it just seems very difficult.


SaucyMrsK Posts : 1,175 Registered: 12/27/06
Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Dec 27, 2006 5:24 PM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

Boy I feel your pain!! I have been engaged for two days and am stressed over some of the same things you mention!  My guy also wants a big over the top production while I'd be happy to run to Vegas and get married in jeans and T-shirt that says "I'm the Bride"

Since he has never been married before I feel a desire to give him what he wants.  Though I am nixing a large guest list. As it is my family will be about 40 of our guests. I want to keep this small?? RIGHT...

Well here is my current plan and I am not sure it will go over but we will see. He really wants to get married at the local historic park. Which should cost us next to nothing since he works for the park district. So I say we get married at the park like he hopes -- but instead of throwing a huge, overdone and more expensive than we can afford reception I am thinking of doing a late morning wedding with a luncheon or just tons of h'ors deuvres.  No alcohol required for a party like this. We can have a good time in the afternoon and then take off on our own for the wedding night and not be too tired to enjoy it!

Well I am sure I am rambling completely. Remember you are not alone; and one piece of advice - Only the desires of you and your fiance matter.  Those that will pick apart things after the fact are going to do this no matter what kind of party you throw. Sit down with your man, decide whats most important to you both and then "Have it your way"  You can't please everyone, but do everything you can to please the two of you!


bexie Posts : 8 Registered: 10/16/06
Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Dec 27, 2006 5:31 PM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

Hello RCC,

You're not alone.  Every time someone asks me about "how's the wedding going" or whatever, I'm like eh, I have better things to do.  The wedding is ONE DAY the marriage is forever (well, at least for half of us... the rest get divorced!).  And just the thought of spending thousands of my parent's money on a party when I don't even own a car makes me kind of ill (don't even get me started on all the anti-female symbolism in a wedding!).  The point is, this is definitely something you need to talk to him about before the planning gets underway.  You need to find a time when you're both calm, and don't have anything else to do that day.  Tell him how you're feeling.  Maybe you can consider a compromise.  Perhaps you have a small wedding in a small venu (chapel instead of church if you're religious, or in the courth house with one or two firends if you're not), with your closest friends.  Have a photographer come so you can show the pictures to people later.   Then, later, maybe not even the same day, have a reception.  This'll be your chance to compromise towards him, invite a lot of people and make it a bigger deal - but since it's a reception you'll only have to talk to one or two people at a time, and there will be no spotlight on you. 

As for planning, just pick one thing and do it.  when it's done, pick another thing and do it.  That way, you won't get overwhelmed, but you'll still be making progress. 

Good luck!

 P.S. we've been engaged since October 6 (it's now december 27) and the ONLY thing we've done is clear the date with the church!

Message was edited by bexie on Dec 27, 2006 5:32 PM


myra Posts : 5,550 Registered: 3/28/06
Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Dec 28, 2006 2:00 AM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

I can understand not wanting the whole big deal (I didn't either, and I didn't have it--just had a cocktail party for 40 people, planned in two weeks). But your guy want it, so compromise seems in order--don't have a huge wedding full of strangers, but do have a "nice," intimate wedding filled with people who love you. It sounds like hiring a wedding planned would lift a lot of this weight off of your shoulders. Leave it to a pro, but a good one that you can feel comfortable with. That may mean interviewing several people to find the right fit. Finally, get thee to a therapist and see if you can overcome some of your fears. I'm not saying that you have to turn into a different person, but maybe you can learn to relax if you understand what makes you so nervous in front of peopel. By the way, a little anti-anxiety medication (e.g. Ativan, which specifically is prescribed for stage fright) might calm you down before the big event. Talk to your doctor and try it out ahead of time, so you know how you react.

Good luck.

myra at

Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Dec 28, 2006 10:12 AM Go to message in response to: myra

How refreshing that other people feel this way.  I also never got caught up in the idea of the WEDDING... and like another poster said the mariage IS the most important part.  My FI wants a large wedding, with all of his family in attendance as well as mine.  I've decided to suck it up and do it his way.. I mean I am getting everything I ever wanted so if he wants a big wedding I will do it.  As for being the center of attention.  I plan on staring at my FI the ENTIRE time, to keep my self grounded, and then he will have to take over if I start getting uncomfortable talking or anything.


I wish you luck and happiness.


Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Jan 10, 2007 4:26 PM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

Thank goodness I found this post. Everyone seems so... planning-crazy out there, doing things a year (or more!) in advance and spending tons of money on their "dream wedding"... Like you, RockChalkChick, I have never dreamed about what my wedding would be like - ever... And I don't want to hastle about planning a wedding! It frustrates me beyond all belief, actually.

My fiance and I were planning to do a cruise ship wedding in a port before we left on a cruise, and use their wedding planning package for something small and simple and just for us and our close family. Well, that idea was pretty well nixed when my mom mentioned, "I can't afford to go on a cruise. You know that." That would have been one of my most important people to come to my wedding, and she has already told me she can't... And I thought about it, and neither would my really close grandma and my really close uncle who has some fears of travel. I thought about my original plan and thought about just the most important people I want at my wedding, and they are all here. My finace's family, on the other hand, isn't all here. Actually, it is just his sister, mom, and dad that are here. So, no matter what, his family would have to travel to get to our wedding.

Our original plan for the cruise was for Aug 2008. The date(s) we wanted our wedding to be on - let's just say his mom not-so-subtly asked us to change them, because she was probably going to have a conference the next week. Huh? What the hell? That was almost 2 years away!  And, whose wedding is it? Oh, ya... not her's... That really pissed me off.

Now, my fiance has applied for a new job/training program, and when he is accepted, he will likely start training by September 2007. So, in August 2008, he will either be in full-time classes or at the bottom rung and just starting his new job. Good luck getting vacation time in your first month of work - or even better, when you are in an intensive study course! As a result, we have decided to get married in 2007 - May, June, or July (I'm not that picky about this, since venues will likely be booked up by all those eager brides who book everything the second they are engaged).

A problem with 2007 - his sister is getting married in August. His mom has already whined that their family will only be able to get here once this year - and even if we want to do a family reception, his sister is totally monopolizing that entire weekend. She could do her rehersal on Thursday night, but she wants it done of Friday. It's not even open for discussion. So, wooohooo... (lack of enthusiasm)... a Thursday night wedding reception... woo... hoo... 

As for my extended family, I am lucky that I have a family reunion this summer, and even though I have a big family, I won't be inviting everyone to my wedding. I am looking into a hotel with a casion and nightclub on-site, so I don't have to have a big reception - just dinner, basically, after the ceremony. And then everyone can do whatever they want after that... But, that is again subject to availability.

Alas, after my rant, my suggestion is to maybe to a smaller ceremony, with just everyone really close to you guys there - ie. parents, siblings, grandparents, and only the best of friends. And if your fiance wants the big reception, he can be persistant with all the leg-work (it's actually really nice that he has been looking into stuff, even though some vendors think he's crazy! :P). I get frustrated and upset and angry and feel like crying when I think about planning my wedding. But, I am not willing to make a big fuss just for someone outside my fiance and I who thinks there should be something "else" with my wedding. It isn't for them - it is for us - and we will do it however we end up doing it.


Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Jan 10, 2007 11:25 PM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

Wow, you sound just like me. I hate speaking in public and do not care to be the center of attention. I was never one of those girls that dreamed of my wedding day, and had an idea of what I wanted. So it's like you're starting from scratch just trying to figure out what you like and what you don't like. I wanted to elope but FH said that he feels that I deserved a wedding, and I felt kind of bad because the first time he got married he eloped and his family wasn't there and it's alot of them, my family is super small now.


I know and understand completely the feelings that you are going through. You just have to take it one project at a time and one day at a time. It seems like ever since it became 2007, my ticker seems to be moving quite fast and I'm just not ready and done with planning and paying, so I go through my attacks but I take some time out to distance myself from planning. You truly have to have patience and it will come. And the excitement will come as well, I promise, but you will still have anxiety attacks (I still do) and worry. Just remember you have us here on the boards and you have your family and bridal party that will help you through this. Remember to take deep breaths and have caffine on standby. Good Luck and Congratulations on your engagement, have you two set a date yet. If not, don't worry or panic, everything will be just fine.


futuremrsperry Posts : 1,904 Registered: 4/23/06
Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Jan 11, 2007 11:51 AM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

You know it's strange, I can perfectly comfortable to stand up in front of 12 and 13 year olds and teach but when it comes to standing in front of my family and friends and people my age or older, I am a nervous wreck!!  But I wanted a wedding with the dress and tuxes and everything.  And so did my FH.  But now that we think about it, city hall looks really nice.  It's getting out of control!!!

Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Jan 11, 2007 3:29 PM Go to message in response to: futuremrsperry

I know what you mean about getting out of control. I never dreamed about my wedding day, I just knew I wanted a husband and kids. I was dragged to a few weddings when I was a  small child so I have no clue what really goes on. Apparently saying that was a green light for everyone to bonbarde me with this is gorgeous and you should do this. I don't know who to listen to. As for public speaking, I hate for attention to be drawn to me so all I can think about is my face turning an million shades for red which will be accented by a big poofy white dress.
Life's too short to be unhappy.

Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Jan 11, 2007 4:09 PM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

I knew someone like this and what they did was they found a place that took care of everything and it cost them about 5 grand and it came out really good might be something you can consider if you dont want to hassle with every little detail.


goldilocks Posts : 2 Registered: 8/4/07
Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Apr 17, 2008 11:30 AM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick


I have been engaged for 8 months, and haven't confirmed a detail.  My fiance had a two week conversation with our parents, who all wanted a big family wedding.  We enjoy our parents, but lost our sense of humor with them and each other, so decided to not engage in the drama.  Its been fun.  To us, it seemed like a pandora's box, and at that, unnecessary to our story.  All in all, we imagine ourselves being spontaneous about the whole thing.  It wasn't a snap of the finger, though.  We had our illusory moments, but came back down to earth eventually.  Have fun with NOT having it.  People put all sorts of pressure on your time when you say you intend to spend the rest of your life with someone.  It really isn't what the bond is about. Have a good chuckle at how intelligent, well-intentioned yet still silly people sound at the news of engagement.  Its best to have fun with your lover.  SO many other things in life to stress about. Cheers.


Em30 Posts : 1 Registered: 4/8/09
Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Apr 8, 2009 3:48 AM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

I am so glad to have found this post. I don't want a wedding. I have never wanted a wedding. And I feel like a freak for not wanting what I feel like everyone expects me to want.

I love my fiance more than I can explain, but I don't feel like having a wedding has anything to do with having a healthy, happy marriage. I feel like it is a show for everyone else, when all that I care about is what is between me and my fiance.

Unfortunately, I feel like I am ruining our wedding day for everyone else...because I am not inviting so and so, and so and so, and so and so...and they are going to feel "slighted". My fiance and I agreed on a 100 person wedding (my absolute max that I am not even comfortable with) and I still feel awful that I am telling people no, they aren't invited. My fiance would like a large celebration, and I would like to elope. His mom also wants to invite about 100 more people. Compromising doesn't seem to make me feel any better, because I feel like I am letting people down and I am not even being true to myself.

I hate wedding planning. It is overwhelming. We aren't even having a fancy wedding, but there are so many details to take care of. My fiance has agreed to help more, but I am worried that with 100 people and with the backyard-type wedding vibe we are going for, it is just going to be a sloppy, chaotic mess. I don't want to spend so much money (it's not a lot compared to most weddings, but it is a lot to me) just for a wedding that I never wanted in the first place.

All I want is my fiance and I to be married. I want to live my life with him and to love him forever. I just wish it was August 24th already. I guess I just need to talk more to my fiance about this, because it makes me feel sick. Next stop is counseling.

But thank you for your post. I am glad I am not the only one who feels like this.


Lawie Posts : 1 Registered: 9/19/10
Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Sep 19, 2010 11:30 AM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

I feel exactly the same and it makes me sick just thinking about it. I'd rather chew a wasp!


Watashi Posts : 1 Registered: 10/18/10
Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Oct 18, 2010 4:52 PM Go to message in response to: RockChalkChick

I totally agree. I know my fiance wants a wedding and we already have a small list - 40 guests, but I really don't want a wedding because of these reasons:

We're both in the film industry and our income is quite unpredictable so I'd rather save money than spend it on a wedding.

I'm EXTREMELY against public affection, even to the point of hugging. So I would not be comfortable kissing my groom infront of all the guests, let alone my parents.

I've never imagined I'd be engaged or married. I've been very cynical about weddings since I come from a broken family.

I think weddings are super cheezy, I don't like all the flowers or the girly decorations (I'm an extreme tom boy)

I can't eat sugar or flour or artificial sweetners so I'm pretty hesitant in spending hundreds of dollars on a wedding cake.

I'd rather spend money on a honey moon since I haven't been on a vacation for over 10 years.

I don't like white, I'd rather get a black, blue or gold wedding dress.

Both my fiance and I are pretty anti-social and we don't like parties.

Also I think the whole wedding is superficial, trying to impress your family and friends of your new marriage. I'm also pretty unemotional so seeing people tear up at the wedding would just make me feel like wtf.

But saying all this, I really do love my fiance, just that I think the whole wedding is a sham and waste of money. I just don't see the point in spending thousands or even hundreds of dollars on a party. My fiance is supportive tho, he says that if I don't want it, then we don't but he thinks I'll regret it. But to be honest, I didn't go to my senior prom and I never regret not going.


PharmToxGirl Posts : 5,446 Registered: 8/30/07
Re: Don't want a wedding - am I alone?
Posted: Oct 18, 2010 4:59 PM Go to message in response to: Watashi

If it's not what you want, then don't do it.

BUT just to a couple points you made - have a dress in whatever color you want! And don't spend a fortune on the cake. My friends had a pretty round cake and then had a sheet cake from Costco - or just do something you can eat and enjoy and skip the cake altogether.

The one big thing that is different is you can do what you want! Go on your HM and get married there! My other friend and her fiance were going to New Orleans for a work conference for him (she was joining him for a long vacation) - and we threw a wedding together of JUST THEM (in less than a week)! I helped her find a photographer and they found an officiant and just got married (once they figured out they could do it legally).

They had the perfect wedding for them - just whatever you do - make it special!





Thank You
for Signing Up!

Check your e-mail inbox for the latest updates from

Give a Subscription to Brides Magazine as a Gift
Subscribe to Brides magazine