Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married

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ScottieCat Posts : 4 Registered: 12/20/11
Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Dec 20, 2011 2:49 PM

I'm posting because I am becoming very concerned about what is going on in my head regarding my wedding and I need to talk to someone about it, and honestly, I would prefer a stranger who won't judge me.

I am eloping, at least that is the plan. I don't want a party. I just want to elope with only my fiance, be married, and then just go back to living our lives but be married . I have a lot of reasons why I'm eloping. One is that I've never been a white wedding girl. All I've ever wanted was one opportunity to look pretty and have pictures taken in a dress that looks like it was made for me with a huge smile that I can look back on and remember me being happy..and beautiful. My parents eloped. My grandparents eloped. We've never celebrated things. We aren't sentimental. We just don't do that whole family thing that so many people do. It's just my parents and me now so we have no extended family, no cousins, aunts, etc. My parents and I have always been fine with that. I've always looked at people who do anything different and thought, 'that life would be awful! Thank god I don't have to deal with that stuff' It's just not my thing.

Another is, I've moved 4 times in the past 5 years and I'm in my 30's. It's hard enough to maintain a close network of friends in your 30's because so many women have started families and friends tend to take a backseat, especially when they live in a different time zone. And it's even harder to create a new circle of friends when your in your 30's and you move a lot. I would love to throw a party, in fact, I was planning one, but very few (like 2) can attend because it is expensive to travel and I had a really hard time finding any other people than the ones I asked that I wanted to celebrate with just to fill seats. So I canceled it.

The last one is, my FMIL. I am very low key about marriage. It was the way I was raised. She has become a lunatic. She has taken every ounce of joy I have and turned it to dread. She doesn't understand why I don't want to make a big deal about a wedding and I am so against a party. She doesn't respect my wishes, and it means nothing to her that hosting a party isn't something I want because I did want one and I had no one to attend it and I don't want the reminder that I didn't have enough friends in my life to fill a room. She's even gone as far to plan a reception behind my back and invited only her friends to it. After that, I learned that I will probably hate the ground my FMIL walks on and this really scares me. Can you have a successful marriage when you despise the woman who gave birth to your husband? I understand that she is just really excited, but I'm not. Her excitement has actually made me second guess whether or not I want to get married at all, especially into her family.

I'm thinking of getting counseling, but I don't know if counseling will ever change my feelings that I have. I've temporarily put a hold on my elopement because I'm not sure it's something I can go through right now (or ever). I'm really upset, and I'm starting to think that I'm the one with the problem, that my parents really are dysfunctional like she says, and that I shouldn't get married.

Edited by: ScottieCat on Dec 20, 2011 2:50 PM

Just realized this is in the wrong section....

Edited by: ScottieCat on Dec 20, 2011 2:51 PM

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Aunt Posts : 794 Registered: 12/31/10
Re: Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Dec 20, 2011 7:52 PM Go to message in response to: ScottieCat

Dear Scottie,

"Can you have a successful marriage when you despise the woman who gave birth to your husband?"

It depends on the man.

If the man understands and sympathizes with you and does his best to mitigate his mother's actions, then, yes you can have a happy marriage.

If, on the other hand, the man seems to act like there is something wrong with you when you don't go along with Mom's plans, it's time to re-think.

From what you wrote, I get the impression you are driving yourself nuts with all the second-guessing. Calm down.

You don't want a big wedding. Great. You and FW and legally required witnesses go to a courthouse and get it done. Go out for a nice lunch or dinner afterwards.

There's nothng wrong with that. Not at all. Lots of people do just that and they go on to have happy lives.

What bothers me is your need to justify your decision, in detail. That is where I am wondering if you are driving yourself nuts with this "on one hand, on the other hand, but wait" type of stuff.

My strong suggestion: Make a decision that best suits your needs, get your guy on board, then DO IT, then go on with your life.

As for his mother, let him take care of her. He can be the one to politely explain that, no, you don't want a big party. That's the way it goes.

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ScottieCat Posts : 4 Registered: 12/20/11
Re: Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Dec 20, 2011 8:16 PM Go to message in response to: Aunt

'You don't want a big wedding. Great. You and FW and legally required witnesses go to a courthouse and get it done. Go out for a nice lunch or dinner afterwards.'

Sadly, that was one of the plans. My last 'technical' wedding date was scheduled for Dec 30. I had a lawyer booked(you get married through an attorney in my state and don't require witnesses) and we invited our parents to go to a simple dinner after. I wasn't going to wear white much to everyone's shock. I wasn't even going to exchange rings. We thought everything was good and that they understood that it was going to be parents only and then dinner afterwards and that is not to be made into a big deal. We had planned to marry in the US and then have a symbolic ceremony (since it is so difficult to get legally married in so many countries) - which I would consider my official wedding day- in a foreign country with my dress and professional photos and that was the day I told them I wanted to be my real wedding day so the less attention we could draw to the legal ceremony (or as my father called it 'our contract signing with the attorney').

I then found out that my FMIL had invited 16 people to the lawyer's office, was arranging music, flowers, a limo, a photographer, rented a banquet space, and wanted to coordinate with my outfit. I had to cancel it after that because I felt doing all that would take away from the meaningfulness of what I felt should be my wedding day. I explained to her that my real wedding day was when I was in a dress and we wanted to invite them to the legal US portion so that they felt involved in some part, not because it was a wedding per say. I wasn't going to have 2 weddings or do a 'photo shoot' with my dress and I certainly didn't want to have a celebration reception before I felt, in my mind, I was married.

I wasn't necessarily justifying why I was eloping. I was giving the reasons as to why I don't want other people, including family with me when I get married. It's an awkward experience in front of my family, I have no friends to celebrate it with, and my FMIL sucks the joy out of me when she's around, so I'm eloping. I don't owe anyone an explanation to why I'm eloping but apparently I owe people an explanation regarding why I want no party, celebration, of big deal made of it. People think I'm odd, but I really want to get married just the 2 of us, and then go on with my life. I've never even had a birthday party nor have I gone out to eat with family for any other milestone in my life. I don't want to start now.

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Aunt Posts : 794 Registered: 12/31/10
Re: Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Dec 20, 2011 10:16 PM Go to message in response to: ScottieCat

Dear Scottie,

I can understand your being confused. Your plans are confusing me.

If you want a simple wedding at the lawyers office, and FMIL signs you up for the a big she-bang, then why oh why did you tell her that far in advance?

Plan your date, then tell the parents that within a certain week, you will give them an hour's notice to get themselves to the lawyer's office. That way FMIL cannot go out and hire a bunch of stuff you don't want. You and your guy need to take control.

If you trust your own parents, you can let them in on the actual date and time farther in advance, but FMIL has proved to you she cannot be trusted to respect your wishes. Thus, she gets short notice.

If you stand your ground, you can get the wedding you want. If she still is huffy, then just tell her she won't be invited at all, and will hear about the wedding in the past tense.

"then have a symbolic ceremony "

Whoa.

A "symbolic ceremony"???

In other words, you are not adverse to a big event if it's fake and not real ?

You've lost me there. I fully support your desire to have the kind of wedding you want. Go to the lawyer's office, great, then go on with your life.

But for the love of Pete, after having stood firm in your desire to not have a giant event (not even 16 people), DON'T turn around and have a fake wedding. It is really insulting to tell people "You are good enough to give me a gift and come to the phoney re-enactment, but not good enough to be invited to witness the real thing."

If I got an invitation like that, I'd be plenty pissed off and probably would politely decline, citing a prior commitment.

You can't have it both ways. You either have the simple wedding or the elaborate wedding.

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ScottieCat Posts : 4 Registered: 12/20/11
Re: Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Dec 20, 2011 11:13 PM Go to message in response to: Aunt

I'm sorry, I think I confused you. I didn't want to have a courthouse wedding. I wanted to get married in another country with just my fiance. Since we were going to get married in a foreign country and because of the requirements to get married in that country (4 week residency prior to being married) we had to be legally married prior. I was just going to do the legality part in the US so the paperwork was legitimate. This is the norm with people that get married in countries that have strict wedding requirements (ie- all of Europe, a lot of South America, etc.). He told his mother about it, without my consent, and she made it into our wedding when my family and I interpreted it as a legal formality and, while I was married in the eyes of the law, my true wedding day was the day I walked down the aisle, said my vows, and exchanged rings. In my mind, if I've celebrated being married before, in my eyes, I've shared my vows, that symbolic ceremony would have just been a photo shoot.

We have since changed the country and are eloping in Costa Rica, which has no restrictions and doing all the legal paperwork there, so the courthouse is no longer necessary. Well that is what we planned, I've actually temporarily called off the engagement and given back the ring.

And with all due respect, where did you ever get the idea that I asked or wanted gifts or invited anyone to a 'phony re-enactment'? My whole issue is that I don't want anyone in attendance for anything and people won't respect my wishes. No one has ever been invited to our wedding in another country. No parents, no friends, no one.

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ScottieCat Posts : 4 Registered: 12/20/11
Re: Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Dec 20, 2011 11:21 PM Go to message in response to: ScottieCat

And I completely understand why you're confused. I'd be too. Heck, I'm losing track of what is going on. I've planned 3 different 'weddings' that I've had to cancel because of people inviting themselves to it or planning parties I asked not to be made. Mulling over how much stress and ridiculousness is the reason I gave the ring back. If we're meant to be, it should be easy.

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anne11235813 Posts : 58 Registered: 11/15/08
Re: Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Dec 23, 2011 3:12 PM Go to message in response to: ScottieCat

Dear ScottieCat,

i think I captured the essence of what you are saying in your posts quite well.

Bottom line: your FMIL is a bitch. To invite people to an event where she is only a guest herself is beyond rude. I think you did the right thing to just cancel it instead of arguing with her. But I hope you and your future husband will go through with your new plans to elope to Costa Rica and that you will be very happy.

Aunt is right when she says that you can have a very happy life with your partner even with such a mother if he stands on your side and defends you whenever necessary. You marry him, not her, and children can be the total opposite of their parents!

Where I do not agree with her at all is calling a second ceremony "fake" or a "gift-grabby event". ScottieCat, you clearly stated your reasons for it: you don't want any attention or attendands but you still want to celebrate with your then husband with dressing nicely and getting beautiful pictures. Again, no one would be invited.

I know that in the US you can get legally married in a church or basically anywhere with an (religious) officiant. But here in Europe, you have to get married in the courthouse and anything else (religious ceremony) is purely optional. But anyone who opts for an additional ceremony obviously puts the emphasis on that second ceremony. There is then usually a small reception at the courthouse and only one big party (if at all) after the second ceremony.

It is easy - if you are open minded - to transfer this concept to your plans, ScottieCat, and to not suspect you of being gift-grabby.

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joshdebruijn Posts : 6 Registered: 4/17/12
Re: Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Apr 18, 2012 4:57 PM Go to message in response to: ScottieCat

;( Sad story ScottieCat I am a bit amazed. Well, I am also confused about what to write in suggestion. But I think even if you're going into the 30's of your life you must try to get social as well. I know its hard you can't be friend with everyone. And sometimes a strangers can help you a lot. About your marriage you must think about different aspects. Your parents are saying you not get married isn't the solution for your life. :( You never celebrated things in your home with your parents, right? I think that's not how world is moving on. Live a normal life, think positively about things around you. You seems much depressed. I don't have much words to say what I should blurt out to help you. :(

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Re: Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Sep 13, 2012 9:47 AM Go to message in response to: ScottieCat

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swichwang34 Posts : 657 Registered: 9/13/12
Re: Don't want a wedding celebration -questioning if I shouldn't get married
Posted: Sep 15, 2012 9:41 AM Go to message in response to: ScottieCat

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