Honestly, an 18-month engagement would be a dream come true for my SO and I. Regardless of WHEN we get engaged, I don’t see us getting married before October 2016, meaning, I’m looking at a 2+ year engagement if I get engaged this year. We opted for a longer engagement for a number of reasons, but most specifically, I wanted the wedding of my dreams, the venue of my dreams, etc. I didn’t want to comprimise just to get married six months earlier. I graduate from grad school in May 2016 and didn’t want to have a stressful final year ON TOP of wedding planning, and then because we live in Florida, getting married in the summer of 2016 was just NOT happening. We live together, we have a life together, we are, for all intents and purposes “married,” but regardless, I want the wedding of my dreams.
Now, talk to me when I actually have the ring on my finger and I’m going absolutely bat-shit insane, you may rub this post in my face.
For right now, are you able to make any other decisions? Maybe just checking SOMETHING off your list will help you feel a little better and make it feel more “real.” Maybe do some cake tastings, meet with florists, or photographers? Maybe select STDs or invitations, even though you can’t send them yet. My sister had a 22 month engagement, and she said the best thing when she felt as if she was stalled was that she tried to look at it as being stress free. There were no looming deadlines and she and her then Fiance now DH could take their time making decisions. Plus, she was able to book the venue, photographer, caterer, florist of her dreams because she was making decisions for almost two years in advance! Most girls make decisions 12 months or less before they get married, meaning NOTHING was booked on the dates she wanted.
As for the manipulative parents, I will echo another poster’s statements: Manipulative family members will come out of the woodwork at any time during the wedding process and it is imperative that you pick your essentials (venue, dress choice, date choice, etc) and stick to it. Do not let their comments get under your skin, because they will try to grab ahold of this and steer it towards their needs and wants. At the end of the day, it is YOUR wedding and YOUR life, so unless they are paying for the entire ordeal, make sure you are not bending to their every wish and whim. There is something about a wedding that makes seemingly normal family members turn into crazy, crazy, CRAZY people. I’ve seen it happen to the best of people. I would stop discussing so many details with your family members.
Book a couple of tours at venues and then, no matter popular opinion, book the venue of your choice. You may think 18 months is far away, but around where I live, venues book up three years in advance, so I’d hop to it. The earlier you make decisions, the more choices you’ll have on almost everything. Waiting until it’s “closer” is only going to put you in competition with couples who got engaged six months after you. Bottom line, pick a venue and then start making as many decisions as possible. 18-months will be gone in the blink of an eye.