(Closed) Saying “I do” before the “big day”

posted 8 years ago in Legal
Post # 3
18643 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2009

I think I would do it on the down low and not even tell your parents if it would make them upset.  There is no reason they would have to know that you did it, it sounds like you are really struggling right now and might need to do this.

Post # 4
761 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2011

I say go for it and they should be able to appreciate that you are doing it to help their granddaughter not as a slight to the wedding.

Post # 5
186 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I have a friend whose parents didn’t even know that they were married by a jp almost a year before their wedding.

We did it that way. However we waited 2 years for our ceremony, which will be this October. I know several people who’ve done it this way too.

Post # 7
520 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2010

Don’t tell them.  We have to get a civil ceremony here before we go to Brazil too (only bc in Brazil there’s so much bureaucracy to get married there, and we won’t be there long enough for the paperwork).

My parents know, and I think his parents know, but I didn’t tell anyone else.

Post # 8
234 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

I’d do it!  From your situation it sounds like you’d consider the Justice of the Peace marriage to be more of a financial decision then anything else, and you won’t consider yourselves to be truly married until the actual ceremony.  From that standpoint, your financial decisions are none of your in-laws business, so there’s no need to tell them.

I will say that I know people who were military who’ve gone this route and you should double check two things. 1) Does your Fiance need to get approval for a dependant?  In some circumstances there’s paperwork that needs to be done before you get on his benefits, and I’d hate for you to find out after you went to the Justice of the Peace that you were still not eligible yet.  2) Will whoever’s performing your fall ceremony be willing to go forward if you’re already legally married?  I know someone who ended up having to settle for a renewal of the vows ceremony (similar, but it made a difference to her, and the parents would def notice the wording because there’s no “I now pronounce you man and wife”). If your officient wouldn’t mind, then awesome, but it’s just something you should double check, because you don’t want the step-mom to realize what happened in the middle of the ceremony!

Post # 10
1854 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: December 2009

I dunno… I guess I’m alone here, but this is a big secret to keep, and it’s not something that you have to keep your mouth shut for a few months; it’s for your whole lives! And usually, the truth finds a way to come out.

I would never be able to commit such deceitful actions, especially since your parents will be investing a lot of money in what they believe to be the start of a marriage.

I understand the financial pressures, but if what is really important to you is getting married and you really do have financial problems, I’d sit down with my Fiance and parents and come up with a super small ceremony and restaurant dinner celebration, and see if your parents would give you the money that they had for the wedding so you can use it for food and mortgage.

But that’s just me…

Post # 11
913 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

We “secretly” got married last August and are having a wedding ceremony/reception this October.  Only our parents, siblings, and 3 super close friends know!  We did it because Fiance wanted a simple low-key thing w/ just us – and we did it by a Justice of the Peace in our first house we bought together and where he proposed  :o)  Another reason we did it was to save $$ for insurance – he gets it free through work and it was silly for me to be paying monthly for it.

Post # 13
278 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I’m often surprised at people’s opinions when this topic comes up. I have no problem with any of your reasons for wanting to do a Justice of the Peace ceremony early and there are a lot of cases where I think it’s completely legitimate. However, part of being an adult is owning your decisions. If you think that going to a Justice of the Peace is the best decision for you and your family, then why not be upfront about it? Being married is a big secret to keep from those closest to you and egb brings up a good point that this becomes a secret for life.

I don’t think it’s fair to your wedding guests to let them think that they’ll be witnessing the beginning of your marriage when you’re already married. You can still have your party, but be honest and call it a vow renewal or a celebration of your marriage. People will still be excited for you and probably more understanding of your decisions than if they learn the truth later.

Post # 14
1562 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

just do it. there is NOTHING wrong with saying I DO before your big day…in fact only about 10 people total know that my husband and I are legally married – our wedding is next month! we’ve been “legal” since april of last year!!!! we did it because he was in desperate need of surgery and I have great insurance.

you don’t need to tell anyone – again the only people who know are those who were there – my parents (who’d have killed me had we done it and they didn’t know…) my Maid/Matron of Honor and her husband (our witnesses) – his mom, bro & SIL (i told cuz she came to his surgery) – and our two ministers, the one who performed the ceremony last year and the one who’ll perform this year (both are at the “real” wedding)

but it makes absolutely no sense not to do it just cuz your step mom feels it won’t be “real” this is about you and your child!!

good luck!!

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