TO @cbgg: Based on my year here on WBee, I will say this.
There was still stress… but IMO a lot less of it than I read here on the Boards.
Especially when it came to Guests & Bridal Parties… I have really had my eyes opened on how this has changed.
IMO Couples now are truly rude to their Bridal Parties… people who are supposed to be their nearest & dearest who do so much and stand up for the couple… and yet some Couples treat them shamefully… like slave labour. So embarassing.
Gone are the paid accommodations for the Bridal Party – right for them to bring a date for the weekend – paid for “specialty items” (hair & makeup) – Bridesmaid Luncheon or Groomsman Dinner – personally chosen Thank You Gifts
No wonder the Bridesmaids balk at a Bride who wants “help” with her many tasks – Don’t find the need to show up at Appintments on time – Freak out at the Bride who wants HUNDREDS of dollars spent on attire… and aren’t that keen to go out of their way to Plan Showers – give the Bride a Gift from “the Girls” – and another for the Happy Couple
The expenses have most certainly tipped against the Bridal Party… as have the expectations from the Couple too. Not really fare… no real give and take. Which IMO makes it all quite a RUDE way to treat someone who is your Best Buddy.
And Guests… oh my gosh the “entitlement” of Guests nowadays is unbelieveable. Once upon a time people were just happy to be asked to attend.
The one thing I will say is Weddings were a heck of a lot cheaper back then …
First because people had smaller less elaborate Weddings (but still very nice), and in most families the Parents chipped in considerably.
There is something to be said for all this modern thinking of “I’m working so I’ll throw my own Wedding cause I don’t want anyone telling me what to do = telling me things I don’t want to hear = not doing things MY WAY” (I’m sooo beyond Etiquette, that is sooo old fashioned)
BUT in reality, following at least some Etiquette makes things generally easier… as it was designed originally so as to cut down on problems (knowing the correct way to act in a social situation… meant everyone on the same page)
Parents picking up some of the tab ensured that the Couple were not majorly in debt from the get go… and they also served as a way to introduce / initiate the newlyweds into society. All good things. I wonder how much of that even exists today. My having the essential elements to step forward as a “recognized social unit” went a long way in establishing the world that myself and my Ex moved into. Etiquette combined with manners meant if one wanted they could become upwardly mobile pretty quickly in both society and their career. Nothing bad about that.
It seems that is all lost now.
People seem way more focussed on stuff that truly only “lasts the day” and then is done. As if SHOW is everything.
Weddings in my time weren’t nearly as elaborate, but they served a purpose of bringing two families together, and launching a new family. There was for the most part a lot of love surrounding the couple.
Not to say there aren’t Weddings like that now (I am sure there are many)… but a good lot of the Pre-Wedding Posts I read don’t seem to be about the good times, mostly just the many facets of stress trying to have the Ultimate Perfect Day.
When I got married, that stress level didn’t exist… I wasn’t worried about the Ultimate Perfect Day… It was a lot more lighthearted… I was just focussed on getting married and everything else was secondary.
Hope this helps,