Post # 1
Hello Bees. I’ve never posted before but definitely have visited these boards quite often for guidance. I need it now more than ever.
My beautiful wedding has been called off 30 days out. My fiance has an anxiety disorder and it was just too much for him to handle. He says he wants the marriage, he just can not handle our 120 person wedding and all that goes along with it. He tried really hard to be able to go through with it because he knew how much it means to me, but the closer we got, the worse it got. Honestly, I kept telling everyone I just wanted to get it over with when they would ask me if i was “excited” because of the pressure we both felt. Planning it was no fun. I thought if I just kept moving things along, he would become more comfortable. I guess we should have planned something different from the beginning, but I wanted the wedding. With our family and friends there who love and support us. I want my dad to walk me down the aisle. I want to dance with him.
I love him so much and know that his anxiety isn’t his fault. And he says he wants to plan something that will make both of us happy. But I’m having a hard time even thinking about planning something new. I planned the wedding I wanted, trying hard to keep him in mind, incorporating things he would love, picked a band that played the songs he loved etc. and really cut down the guest list to something that I felt was fair. I promise you, I’m far from thinking I deserve some princess day and acting like a crazy bridezilla. I was sensitive to his feelings all along.
We’ve been together a long time, and his anxiety has been a struggle for our relationship. It took us a long time to get engaged. I know it’s something we’ll always face. And he’s been on a path to doing some things that are helping him to get better. Taking meds. Doing acupuncture. going to therapy. He isn’t trying to hurt me on purpose. So I don’t want to say the relationship is over because this wedding is. If he is trying, and if there is still a lot of love between us, I want to stay.
However, how do I not resent him for making me feel I had no choice to call it off? I’m so sad and somewhat embarrassed even though I keep saying I don’t care what other people think. I wish I didn’t care so much about having this wedding. What I want most is to have a happy marriage and I know that a wedding is just the transition point. It’s one day in our relationship.
I guess this was more of a vent than anything. Has anyone cancelled a wedding, stayed together, and planned something new? How do you let go of the wedding that was and let go of the disappointment?
Post # 3
I have never been in your situation,but wanted to commend you for putting your fiance first.I am surprised that there is not a medication that could help him more with his anxiety.I hope that you can have a wedding that makes you both happy.
Post # 4
Aww I am sad to read this post! You are a very strong person. I can’t imagine calling off my wedding 30 days before. My sister/MOH has an anxiety disorder, so I know it can be sometimes difficult to make decisions with people who suffer from anxiety. Since you two have been together for a long time, as you said, I think it would be easier to stay together after calling the wedding off. It sounds like you guys have a long history together. Plus, if he is working on his anxiety now, there is nothing to say he won’t be ready to get married in a couple years. Putting his needs first is extremely selfless on your behalf, especially when it sounds like you wanted the wedding so badly. I think you just need to be patient with how he feels after you call off the wedding. Hugs!
Post # 5
@gus1999: Oh honey, I feel for you…and I hope I don’t have the same future because my fiance also has an anxiety disorder, and it also took us a while to get engaged because of it. His anxiety affects our relationship sometimes, then he promises he’ll go to a counselor and never does. He eventually feels better and we forget about it, until the next episode.
You’re doing the right thing. Stay by his side as you already are doing. What about doing a really really small wedding with just your immediate family and best friend/s?
Post # 6
@gus1999: I think it was very kind of you to consider him and call it off. Medications are useful to help cope with everyday activities, but not to cope with being the center-of-attention at a large wedding. Have you considered a civil marriage now and planning a reception later? I have a friend who had to do it this way in order to relieve the stage fright of being center-of-attention.
Post # 7
@gus1999: p.s….they are still very happily married 🙂
Post # 8
And a small almost elopement is not on the table at all. You can go to the courthouse with your family and just get it done. Maybe make the ceremony uber private and have a public party!
Post # 9
I’m sorry. I can certainly understand feeling disappointed right now, but I am glad you saw past the “pretty princess moment” (not saying that is what it was about!) and recognized that it would cause him great stress. This should be about BOTH of you, though I know it can feel hard when you both apparently are on very far ends of what you want.
But, the wedding IS just a way to mark the start of a marriage and it comes in many forms. Even an exchange of your vows with a Justice of the Peace and two witnesses is a wedding!
What about a very small wedding with just very close family and friends, or an elopement or destination wedding? Would he be comfortable with a larger reception or party later where he does not have to be the “focus”? More as a celebration I suppose than a formal reception.
If you cancelled the wedding because of not wanting that particular wedding, it does not mean you cancelled the relationship! If you both are still on board with getting married, I don’t see any reason why you can’t be. It just might not be what you imagined originally.
As for resentment, well, I think you already know resentment is a very negative energy in a relationship. The best way to deal with it is to probably talk (do NOT let it fester!), accept that this is not something personal against YOU, and that life goes on. You really have to “let it go” as simplistic as that sounds.
Post # 10
@gus1999: I’m so sorry for this happening, the same thing happened to me and my FI (although we were about seven months out from our old date).
Same story: FI proposed and I started planning a wedding for about 70 ppl. It began to grow in size (as weddings tend to do) and before we knew it our guest list was 130. It became too expensive. All kinds of drama ensued. And my poor FI, who was already on a low-dose of anti-anxiety medication, said he couldn’t do it. He didn’t want to say his vows in front of that many people, he didn’t want to dance, he didn’t want a big wedding at all. We cancelled everything, lost about 2k in deposits.
I’m not going to lie to you, it was really hard. I cried a lot at first, because I felt that he didn’t want to marry ME. But he swore he did, swore he loved me. I offered him the ring back, and he wouldn’t take it. So we stayed engaged, with plans of eloping. He went to the doctor, who upped his meds; started cognitive behavioral therapy, and acupuncture. He also takes fish oil and probiotics to help with the physical manifestation of his anxiety.
It has helped so much. He realized that he did want people there, but only family so that he is comfortable. I told him I didn’t care what we did, as long as I got to wear my dress and marry him. So we are now in the process of planning an “intimate wedding” at a bed and breakfast. We will have a beautiful ceremony in the gardens, and a plated four-course meal at the b&b for our nearest and dearest. There won’t be any dancing, but we will have a string quartet for ambiance.
So, you can still have the wedding of your dreams, but perhaps compromise a bit to fit his needs. I keep telling myself that our wedding won’t be traditional, but it will be intimate, romantic, and memorable. And as long as you are both happy and end up married at the end of the day, that’s really all that matters.
Post # 11
I will add, though, that it took a toll on some of our family. I told my mother why we were cancelling, and she’s still not 100% on board with the new wedding. They took back their offer to contribute financially (I just found out this weekend why…), and don’t seem to take it that seriously anymore.
On the other side, FIs family has been amazing. They saw what I gave up in cancelling my dream wedding, and they knew it was for their son. Since my parents backed out, they’ve offered to pay for our “intimate wedding”, and just want us to get married in a way that we are both happy with. I am so, so blessed to have their support.
Keep in mind that people will judge, and you might be embarrassed; but if they don’t understand that you’re doing this for him and for your future together, then frankly they can screw themselves 🙂
Post # 12
@BeeandBeeBride27: “but if they don’t understand that you’re doing this for him and for your future together, then frankly they can screw themselves :)” +1!
Post # 13
This really makes me feel so much better and gives me some hope. I wish I could have just accepted at the beginning that he couldn’t have the traditional wedding event I had hoped for. I felt that if I did that, I was just giving into his anxiety and it just didn’t seem fair to have to give up what I wanted. I just need to keep remembering that as long as I have my dress, my family, my very closest friends, and my guy there that it will be just as special. So much of the rest of it is just noise.
I definitey am feeling you on telling anyone they can “GFY” too. 🙂 So many have an opinion about how marriage and relationships are “supposed” to be and if they aren’t those things, you should leave them.
PS: I’m going to suggest the fish oil to him too; Thanks for the tip.
Post # 14
@gus1999: It does stink that you got (almost) completely done planning when he realized that he couldn’t do the traditional wedding. But look at the silver lining, at least he told you before the day of – I don’t know if that would be forgiveable 😉
Check out http://www.intimateweddings.com
It has some great ideas for intimate weddings and making them really, really unique and memorable. They also spotlight Real Intimate Weddings, and they are just so beautiful. That site gave me hope that we can still have a gorgeous wedding with those we love, even if there are only 20 people there. You could even make it more special by writing handwritten notes to your guests, having each guest light a candle as you walk down your “aisle”, the opportunities are limitless. By having fewer guests, you can really make this special for you and your FI 🙂
Hope this helps, and PM me if you’d like to talk! Wedding planning when FI has anxiety is really hard, but at the end of the day it is so worth it.