Did any of your family/ friends criticize your choice to have a secular wedding?

posted 5 years ago in Secular
Post # 3
Member
4656 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

FH and I are pretty hardcore atheists… We do not believe in anything supernatural, period. It shouldn’t have been any surprise… but yes, we still caught some disappointment and some drama over our choice to have a ceremony that is true to our philosophy, best stated by Douglas Adams: “Isn’t it enough to see a garden is beautiful without having to believe there are fairies at the bottom of it too?”

 

We make no mention of a higher power, or of magic, or of souls, or of fate/destiny. Our vows include promising to help each other remain rational. We quote Douglas Adams (different quote) and Neil deGrasse Tyson. I’m walking in to the theme from my favorite movie as a kid and the recessional is music from a video game. (No other music.) 

 

We did try to reach out to our most vocal critic and offer them the chance to do any reading they liked, but the offer was not accepted. At this point it seems like the issue has blown over, thankfully. I adore my future in-laws wholeheartedly and worried that it would be an ongoing problem but it doesn’t seem to be. Hopefully things are as they seem to be, and your situation is the same – that they feel some shock/disappointment that things are different from what they imagined, but given some time to adjust to the idea, there is a full recovery. 😉

Post # 4
Member
4048 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

Fiance and I aren’t necessarily atheists, but we are not religious at all. Fiance was raised catholic and mom was none too happy when we told her we weren’t getting married in a church but she understands though and has been cool about it after the initial “shock”

Post # 5
Member
7977 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2013 - UK

I sympathise because I had the reverse problem… I had some people who were really unimpressed that our wedding was going to be religious. I don’t know why it should have been such a surprise to them…

Anyway, it seems to be blowing over a bit now. Like Bebealways:  said, it’s a great idea to give critics the option of being more involved. I’m considering getting some of our objectors to do the videography, because we can borrow the equipment from work, and it isn’t in the budget to have it done professionally. If not, there should be other ways to involve them… I hope!

Post # 7
Member
4803 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

Yep, my family is super Catholic and that’s how I was raised, but both Darling Husband and I would consider ourself to be Agnostic, and to be frank even if I was still religious it would be with a different church because I have issues with their mindset on many things.

 

 

Anyways, my family knows I’m not relisious – I think typically the brides and grooms who face the toughest times are those who choose to let their family know they’re not really religious AND that they aren’t getting married in the church at the sae time  it’s a double blow during a sensitive time. We still had a couple of my family members make comments about how they had still been hoping I’d change my mind or want to get married in the church. I was pretty quick about shutting those comments down and letting them know that it would be a beautiful outdoor secular ceremony because I was uncomfortable getting married in the church and it wasn’t what Darling Husband and I wanted, and I thought it would be disrespectful towards people like them who felt so strongly about their religion if I went through with such an important sacrament not believing. That pretty much shut people up. My mom still worried quite a bit that I’d offend my grandparents and they wouldn’t think my wedding was real or counted since it wasn’t taking place in the church, but thank goodness for me they are reasonable people who agreed I shouldn’t be going through the sacrament under false pretenses, and they didn’t say anything about it.

 

Post # 8
Member
364 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

My grandma was a bit shocked when I said we weren’t getting married in a church. I don’t know why, she knows we don’t attend a church. Heck, she doesn’t even go to church. I think she just feels that churches are where you get married because thats how it was done in her day. But other than that, most of my family and friends would be more shocked if we told them we were having a religious ceremony.

MrMojito’s family, on the other hand, is really christian. I haven’t heard anything from them yet, but they will probably be upset.

Post # 9
Hostess
8577 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2014

Yeah, my mom kind of freaked out. She basically told me that we wouldn’t find anyone to marry us [which is silly, in our state town treasurers can marry us!], and that our family wouldnt show up if it wasn’t religious [which is also a lie].

My family AREN’T religious. They never go to church, they never really mention “god” unless it’s to defend him.

My mom is just one of those people who thinks things should be done THIS way and that’s it!

Post # 10
Member
1585 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

Oh god yes. My mother was very resigned to it and disappointed. My Mother-In-Law to be though…man, she wanted a church wedding/country club reception. We’re being flexible (even though we are paying for everything and we owe them nothing) with everything else, but our ceremony is not up for discussion. We want a ceremony we can believe in and agree with. My Fiance and I are both atheists. His mother tried to convince us that we owed her this much.

 

For the record, his background is Irish Catholic. Mine is Jewish. We want an atheist ceremony but even if we DID do a religious ceremony someone would be upset because we’d either do it in a church OR temple. Someone would get burned and upset!

Post # 11
Member
464 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I’ve been an open athiest in my family for years.  My father went to church out of respect for my mother, then my grandmother after they divorced, and since she passed away he goes to church to attend funerals and music concerts.

So I was floored at how much he wanted me to be married by a minister, even finding names of women ministers that would do secular wedding venues (he thinks it’s a Fight the Patriarchy! position).  Getting married on a boat by the captain solved the issue as everyone thinks that’s cool.

Post # 12
Member
2296 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

My Future Mother-In-Law likes to pretend to be surprised, but I know she isn’t.  Her parents probably will be upset- they are very Catholic and my Future Mother-In-Law was raised that way too. But as an adult and while raising her kids she didn’t take them to church, and my Fiance is not at all religious.  I am half Jewish, but I don’t really practice. So our ceremony is going to be entirely secular.  My step dad is going to officiate, and when I told my Future Mother-In-Law that she seemed a bit taken aback, but I think it’s more because of what her parents will say.  But I couldn’t care less- this is OUR wedding not theirs!

Post # 13
Member
2565 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

My grandmother wasn’t happy, and my great aunt tod my mom she shoulk ask me to reconsider.  Neither of them have said anything to me or mentioned it again since my mom intially told them. Hopefully that will be all that happens!

Post # 14
Member
1733 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

No one gave us any blowback, because they know who we are and what we believe. The secular nature of our wedding wasn’t anti-religious, it just didn’t feature any religious observance or sacred language. My husband’s aunt and uncle didn’t attend, but they haven’t attended any family weddings outside their own church since before my husband was born, so that barely counts as criticism. I have a religious sibling and religious cousin, and I’m sure that the wedding wasn’t to their personal taste…but they attended, were happy for us and were exemplary guests.

Post # 15
Member
1218 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

My family are well aware that both Fiance and I are atheists so there were no surprises there. I’m not sure about FI’s family – they’re technically Irish Catholic, and Fiance was baptised, but they don’t have much connection to the church.

I think my grandmother was pushing for a church ceremony at first, but she’s very concerned with image and wanted to be able to tell her friends “oh, well MY granddaughter was married at x church which is the most beautiful in the area!”. I don’t like her much so her opinion was definitely not taken into consideration.

Post # 16
Member
135 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

My fiance and I are both non-religious. But, my fiance’s family is ALL catholic. I really cannot wait to piss them all off by having a 100% non-religious wedding, hahaha!

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