Writing wedding vows is tough, and sometimes it's unclear how to start: sappy poetry, quotes about love, and relationship anecdotes might all come to mind. When you sit down to write the vows, you may know that you love your spouse-to-be, and you likely have more than a few reasons why, but the right words are hard to come by.
Self-described offbeat wedding officiant Maree Johnston has helped many couples write their vows, so she has a few ideas of where to start. "Vows are promises of honesty and fidelity, of course, but don't have to stop there," Johnston says. "It's the little things that make all the difference in a happy marriage. So the question is: What simple act can you commit to doing or not doing that will make your love's life better or easier?"
Meet the Expert
Maree Johnston is an independent wedding officiant and marriage celebrant.
Some couples who write their own vows discuss them beforehand. The final words are still written individually, but it can be helpful to decide on overall length, mention of inside jokes or anecdotes, and how much religious content should be included. This way, both of you are on the same page as you work on your vows separately.
Johnston also suggests that vows don't have to be all serious: "Most of my couples are quirky and offbeat, so I encourage them to let their personalities and humor show in the vows they create." This is where who you both really are can shine. If the two of you have a favorite movie, song, or TV show that invokes fond memories of your time together, slip in a line that will make them laugh—and maybe one that will bring a happy tear to their eyes.
Consider one (or a few) of these famous quotes about love to add to your vows.
Living in a Dream
"You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams." —Dr. Seuss
A Love That Lasts a Lifetime
"I look at you and see the rest of my life in front of my eyes." —Unknown
"It's amazing how one day someone walks into your life, and suddenly, you can't remember how you lived without them." —Anurag Prakash Ray
"How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard." —Winnie the Pooh
A Nod to Disney
"I know they say there are a lot of fish in the sea, but you're my Nemo." —Unknown
Destined to Be Together
"Whatever souls are made of, his and mine are the same." —Emily Brontë
"When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible." —Harry, When Harry Met Sally
A Lifetime of Love
"I swear I couldn't love you more than I do right now, and yet I know I will tomorrow." —Leo Christopher
"Some souls just understand each other upon meeting." —N.R. Hart
Never Let Go
"The best thing to hold onto in life is each other." —Audrey Hepburn
"I would not wish any companion in the world but you." —William Shakespeare
Growing Old Together
"Grow old along with me, the best is yet to be." —Robert Browning
"The question isn't who's going to let me; it's who's going to stop me." —Ayn Rand
"When I look at you, I see everything I've ever wanted." —Anonymous
"A marriage is always made up of two people who are prepared to swear that only the other one snores." —Terry Pratchett
"I would find you in any lifetime." —Kanye West
Laughter Is Key
"Make sure you marry someone who laughs at the same things you do." —J.D. Salinger