Post # 1
Hey, everyone. I’m writing this because recently there was a popular post about wedding etiquette when a couple needs to get legally married before the wedding. So, my fiance and I got engaged in July. Fast forward to August, and I lost my job and therefore my health insurance. Bummer. We had already started planning a wedding for May of next year, with deposits down and everything. I have a chronic illness which requires multiple medications and doctor visits, so I really can’t go without insurance. I looked into insurance plans, and in order to get a plan that would partially cover medications and doctor visits it would be much more money than we could afford monthy. So, we talked it over. We already live together and we know we want to be together forever- the obvious solution for my health and our financial stability is to get legally married before our wedding.
However, reading the post about the Brother-In-Law who eloped months before the wedding scared me. I honestly didn’t think it would be a big deal because it wouldn’t have bothered me as a guest for the couple to “secretly marry”. Basically I’m just looking for advice on how to keep my friends and family as happy and not offended as possible in this situation? We are going to have to get legally married in the next few weeks- my health is just more important than someone’s feelings. But I want to do this in the most diplomatic way possible. My fiance doesn’t want to act “married” until after the actual wedding, so I’m going to keep my last name and not wear a wedding ring until then. We also won’t exchange rings. So announcing myself as married seems kind of odd if that’s not how we’re viewing it?
Anyway, I’m unfortunately in a pickle and I would really appreciate if those who thought the “secretly eloping couple” were rude would tell me what they would do or would want their family to do in this situation. I know this is a hot topic so I’m definitely not looking for any more arguing here- we haven’t done it yet and just want some advice for the best way to do it. I feel really stuck and honestly pretty sad about it.
Post # 2
Does your state allow common law marriage?
Post # 3
Post # 4
Do whatever you need to do now to take care of your health.
I don’t care if a couple secretly or openly got legally married first..
Post # 5
Don’t worry about what a bunch of internet strangers think. If anyone is upset that you were secretly married for health reasons, they are a shitty person. And yes, you can still have your planned ceremony and reception. No need to change it to a vow renewal like some bees would suggest.
Post # 6
I wouldn’t care at all, personally. But if you don’t want to be duplicitous, you could just tell people you got legally married for health insurance reasons, but that you are considering your marriage ceremony to be your true wedding.
Sidenote, how much does the American health care setup suck balls >:( I’m really sorry you have to deal with this.
Post # 7
mollykate92 : mollykate92 : honestly, it wouldn’t bother me at all to find out after the fact or through the grapevine or anything else that a couple did exactly what you’re doing, but if you want to get ahead of ant potential issues my advice would be to be open and honest about it upfront. Be abundantly clear to your VIPs that the ceremony you were already planning is your “real” wedding and that making vows I’m the presence of those you love is what is going to make you feel and consider yourselves married. That the legal bit is being done early for pragmatic reasons.
Surely any reasonable person would understand why you’re doing things the way you are and respect the significance you choose to place on the symbolic ceremony.
Post # 8
mollykate92 : You said it, your health is more important than anyone’s feelings. Personally, I wouldn’t care if someone got married beforehand. If you are planning a ceremony as well that day, keep it a secret! How will anyone know anyway and congrats on your upcoming marriage 🙂
Post # 9
mollykate92 : If it’s just about health insurance you may be able to register as domestic partners and be added to his health insurance without getting married right now. He’ll need to check with his HR department. Problem solved, and no need to worry about any of the rest of this.
ETA: I’m assuming you’re a US Bee since common law isn’t an option. You can Google “domestic partnership” in your county or state. You do not necessarily have to be a same sex couple to register as domestic partners.
Post # 10
Your health is most important. Get married now and then throw a delayed reception as nice as anything you would have otherwise planned. It’s still no excuse to lie to your guests.
Post # 11
I do not care in the least when a couple gets legally married and when they have the ceremony. Some bees here seem to care a lot, but I have never experienced that level of caring in real life and I have been to several weddings where the couple was married prior. Go ahead and get married.
I will add, though, as far as a name change goes, you should legally change your name shortly after the wedding. If you do it then, it will be 100x easier than if you wait until some time in the future. If you change it after the wedding, you will only need your marriage certificate to show at the SS office and DMV, etc. If you wait, you will need to petition a court for a name change, which adds a lot of money, time and paperwork to do. You don’t have to start using your new name with family and friends, but, since you will be legally changing your name, you will need to use it for legal purposes, like your insurance and banks, etc.
Post # 12
- Wedding: November 2025 - City, State
1. Make the responsible, mature choice of taking care of your health and finances first.
2. Be open and honest. Tell people that you are married.
3. Have a big, celebratory party in May. It won’t be a wedding, as the two of you will already be wedded. It won’t include a ceremony, as nothing ceremonious is left to occur. Have dinner and dancing and fun with the people who are important to you.
Post # 13
MollyCatherine : This is ridiculous. So because something that was out of her control happened (losing her job leading to loss of health insurance), she isn’t allowed to have her wedding ceremony or reception? Get a grip.
Post # 14
izzabella : Different states have different time period requirements for name change with just a marriage certificate, I waited more than a year and had no issue with DMV or SS.
Post # 15
I would not care in the slightest.
I had a friend get married for financial reasons/tax purposes and their real wedding was just slightly down the road. They ended up having a flood in their house and with insurance issues just didn’t have the money to have their wedding. She just wears an engagement ring, and hasn’t hyphenated her last name (as she plans to do). They’ve now booked their wedding for next year. Honestly their personal bad luck isn’t really anyone’s business and I am VERY excited to celebrate their WEDDING.
DO YOUR VOWS IN FRONT OF EVERYONE. CELEBRATE YOUR LOVE!