Post # 1
I’m new to here (just registered actually!) I had some really nasty comments in other places and having lurked around here for awhile I think I finally found the right place to get answers to my questions!
So here’s the thing – we’re planning a civil ceremony in June (we both come from a different country than the one we’re in) with no family or anything like that. My mom isn’t able to travel due to illness and its so important to her to see me walk down the isle in a white dress with my Dad that we’ve decided to have a “wedding” in September next year. Its not the traditional way of doing things – but it suits us so we’re going with it!
My question is this: how should we tell other family members about our marriage and that we’ll be having the religious ‘wedding’ later? I’m going to be chaning my name right away and I’d hate for anyone to find out we were married from someone else and be offended.
What should I do? Send a pre-save the date? So confused!!!
Thanks for your help!
Post # 3
My cousin just did this and I got a little postcard in the mail saying “Now that we have said I do, all that is left is to celebrate with you! Save the date XX/XX/XXX”
Post # 4
@MsPanda: That is such a lovely idea!!
Post # 5
@LittleGiraffe826: A lot of women here have very strong opinions about multiple weddings for the same couple. I’m not in that same camp (I think that legally marrying someone without the big shindig is no reason to skip the big to-do later on if that’s what makes you happy), so my views are likely at odds with most of the replies you’ll get.
You’re having a legal union. After, you want to have the religious ceremony. The fact that you differentiate between the two makes it seem, to me, that the answer to your question is right there. Explain to all of your future guests and your friends and family and everyone you want that you have gotten married in the eyes of the law (for whatever your reasons are, if they require an answer). However, it is important to you and your parents that you also get married in the eyes of God, which means that you will be having your religious ceremony in a little while and you would love if everyone could come celebrate this union with you. As they are two different aspects of the same thing — which are generally performed at the same time — I think that having a celebration centered around the religious binding makes the situation easier. Though, for some, they’ll consider you as having been living in sin for not being married under God, but rather the law only.
Now, this is my view as someone who is not remotely religious. I have never thought of “married first, celebration later” as a strange thing. Sometimes, that’s just how life works out for some people. To me, a wedding is the celebration of the marriage. When it happens, if it happens at all (the celebration part), shouldn’t matter. I say shouldn’t. To many people, it does. But then, I also don’t think there’s anything wrong with a wedding that doesn’t include a legal certificate. It’s symbolic of a couple’s commitment to each other, even if they don’t believe in the legal institution of marriage. So as someone who believes these things, I might not be the right person to give you my input. If not, I’m sorry. :-/
Post # 6
@MsPanda: That is a seriously awesome way of doing it! My answers are always so long-winded, and then I see others’ supportive, awesome posts that manage to do it in one sentence and I feel silly. Very awesome, lady. 😀
Post # 7
- Wedding: May 2013 - Kempinski San Lawrenz, Gozo
@LittleGiraffe826: hi there! 🙂 welcome to WB. You’ll find loads of help here.
Since you’re rather let your relatives know about getting married before the wedding, I’d send them a save the date which also includes a marriage announcement.
Right after you’re married, send them a save the date, telling them that you just got married and you can’t wait to see them at the celebration next year. it would be the perfect opportunity to let them know.
Post # 8
@ellisrobertson: To be honest if I wouldnt have just gotten that in the mail (like last week) I probably wouldn’t what known what to write at all. I thought that the way they worded their save the date was cute so I thought I would share!
Post # 9
@MsPanda: That is definitely awesome! And it makes me happy that a) they were comfortable enough to do it that way (get married first, have a celebration later AND be honest about it), and b) it was well received. I know that a LOT of people would be upset and feel slighted at being asked to attend the “party” of it all without being “important” enough for the getting married part of it. It makes me really sad the way people turn marriages / weddings into political issues rather than a celebration.
Post # 10
We got married alone in 2011. Our parents knew, but weren’t there. When we got home we sent out marriage announcements, primarily so people would know that we both changed our names.
Since we were already married, we didn’t have another wedding. But we celebrated our first anniversary with a big party for family and friends. We spread by word of mouth that we looked forward to celebrating with them next year.
Post # 11
A lot of Bees get quite upset when a Bee gets married and then have the wedding at a later date. But if circumstances mean you can’t do both at the same time, I think it’s even stranger to not want to celebrate with your family and friends later. Sounds like an awesome idea and I love the way a PP suggested you word your Save the Date!
Post # 12
I would personally only tell the absolute nearest and dearest (parents/siblings) and not bring it up to anyone else… but just be candid and honest with anyone who asks questions.
The save the date idea is cute, though if you’re having a ceremony at your celebration it might confuse people (who would be expecting party only.) So probably wanna make that clear on your website or something.
Post # 13
@MsPanda: I love this idea
Post # 14
@MsPanda: this is the best approach I’ve seen. More than once the couple tried to trick guests into attending a “wedding” when it was actually more of a re-enactment or vow renewal. One time, it was fairly public knowledge that the couple was already married but they completely ignored this fact as they went about planning and inviting people to their wedding. All times it didn’t sit right with me, and in all cases I declined to attend.
OP, I’m usually in the camp of “you only get married once,” but if I received an invitation that: (1) acknowledged that the couple was legally married (2) mentioned that I am invited to a celebration or reception, not a wedding and (3) seemed to genuinely request my presence [not just gifts], I’d be happy to attend. Best wishes!
Post # 15
@ellisrobertson: I like this this was a good post, you explained it beautifully:)
Post # 16
@Overjoyed: I read your post I must admit it bothered me a little that you feel that everyone who does this is “tricking” their guests into getting presents. I think to many people focus on the “gift” part of it as the reason that two people celebrate their marriage. I am of the opposite view but I realize everyone is entitled to their opinion, however making a bride or groom feel bad because their situation and desires are different fromt the American norm isn’t right either. What if someone very close to you needed to have a legal ceremony and then a more spiritual one for whatever reason? Would you still not attend. I know personally that I would be very hurt if one of my loved ones that I invited to my wedding decided not to come because they thought I was “tricking” them. However this is just my opinion. I just think that is is selfish for a guest to have an assumption about the Bride or Grooms intentions. In any case the reception is not an actual celebration of getting married but a recognition and celebration of the marriage. The same as an anniversary. Would you tell someone who has been married for some time and they had an anniversary party that you weren’t coming becuase you think “they expect” gifts? I think that would be extremely unfair. Just to clarify I think the act of not going becuase you assumed what they wanted is selfish. I am in no way saying that you ( yourself) are a selfish person because I don’t know you. I am just saying perhaps you should just give people the benefit of the doubt and if you don’t want to attend at least acknowledge that you are happy for their union no matter when it happened. A handwritten letter costs you nothing but time…