(Closed) Scheduling Wedding around PhD?

posted 5 years ago in Ceremony
Post # 2
Member
7120 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

I got engaged this past fall, halfway through my program, and we’re getting married in September, the beginning of my 4th year.  This works out for me because there’s no field work at this time, I’m done with classes, and I won’t be teaching.  I know someone who started our program engaged, and got married the summer between our first and second years.  It depends what works for you.

If you are going into a program engaged, it’s okay to talk to your advisor about when you’re getting married.  This is a HUGE step in your personal life.  Discuss the time off.  You won’t be getting married again during your program.  I would start by getting an idea from your advisor of what your schedule will be like for the next year or two so you can pick a date, then let them know that this is when you’ll be getting married and will need some time off.

As far as our honeymoon goes, we’re spending a couple extra days at our destination, but taking a vacation the following summer as a severely postponed “honeymoon.”

Post # 4
Member
7120 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

View original reply
Pupster2016:  Have you thought about a spring break wedding?  Or a week after your spring semester is over/before you have to leave for the field?  If your wedding is local, you might not have to take much time off at all.  It also depends on how big of a wedding you’re planning on having.

I understand where your advisor is coming from… if you don’t have a research plan quite yet, it can be difficult to predict where you’re going and when you’re going.  Do you know if you have to complete the field work at a specific time of year?  I.e. May/June vs. June/July?

I suggest if you want to try to solidify a date sooner than later, make it a low-impact wedding.  Don’t put so much stress on yourself to plan it, so make it either small or hire a wedding planner to take care of it for you.  My peer who got married had a lot of stuff she did on the weekends, and had her wedding planner take care of most of the details.  For my wedding, it’s going to be intimate with little focus on detail, so I haven’t been doing much for it either.

I would say, contact her before she leaves for field work and say, “I was thinking about scheduling my wedding the weekend after finals (or whatever), but I won’t need much time off for it.  Does this work with the possible field days? Or do you suggest I try to plan it sooner?”  Maybe schedule it in the middle of spring semester, but only take a few days off.  That way, it’s not a concern to field work whatsoever.  

Post # 6
Member
52 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2016

this post is really relevant to me and my fiance since we JUST decided on our date finally! My fiance is currently in school and we were debating whether to get married after he’s done which is in 2 years or next year. We are doing long distance due to his committment to school schedule (4 days of classes). We decided to go with next year because starting next year August he will be placed in hospitals where he prefers. He will be putting his preference around the area where we will live. He has two weeks off next August just like this year and he has a rough idea of when in the month of August it will be. Since the dates of his summer break is not for sure we are putting our wedding date on a sunday in the beginning of August so we will be ahead of the summer break whenever in the month of August it will be. I also agree that it’s hard for you to directly ask your school about the future schedules as I know it was for my fiance. My fiance was hesitant about asking but he will be asking for the rough estimate when he sits down with one of the advisors for his upcoming rotations. He said that the advisor is already aware that he is engaged which he thinks will be a plus in easing the conversation into next year’s summer schedule. I hope this sort of…maybe helps! 

Post # 7
Member
1939 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2018 - City, State

Fiance is in pharmacy school getting his pharmD. We will be getting married between his 2nd and 3rd year on a weekend then postponing our honeymoon until after his graduation as a honeymoon/omg you’re a pharmacist yay! type trip (lolol). Unfortunately he has summer work every year in between terms except his first year but that just seems too soon for us. 

Post # 9
Member
149 posts
Blushing bee

Your advisor sounds reasonable so I’m sure she will work with you to find a way to work around your personal stuff. I think it would be worse if she said you have to do it at X time and X time only, since that suggests she is more rigid. And I agree that it’s hard to say when is the best time without having more concrete reserach plans.

If you need to start booking things now, I would just do it and then move your reserach obligations around it. You’ll drive yourself crazy trying to find the perfect time, since it doesn’t really exist. I would suggest waiting until after you’re done with coursework and exams before getting married – this was most definitely my most busiest/stressful time and when my schedule was the least flexible. I wouldn’t worry about splitting up your honeymoon and wedding – plenty of people do this for other reasons and while is nice to have them back to back, try to think about it as spreading the fun. My fiance’s parents actually did their honeymoon before their wedding because his dad was started med school right after the wedding. And my close friends got married at the end of the summer and then did their honeymoon during winter break and loved having something to look forward to during the grind of first year medical school.  

Post # 10
Member
280 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

I second the recommendation to try and schedule it after you’ve finished coursework and exams. Your time will probably be more flexible when you are writing, but I understand that comes after your long extensive fieldwork and you would like to be married before then. 

If it matters it might be easier/cheaper to try and plan a wedding over your winter break rather than a summer break. This happened to a friend of mine. Both she and her husband work at a university, and a summer wedding would have been too stressful (they do a lot of work with incoming students and move-in). So they got married in the week between Christmas and New Year’s. 

Post # 11
Member
52 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2016

View original reply
Pupster2016:  He is meeting the advisor who solely schedules everyone’s clinicals beginning of May. He will be suggesting his preferences to where he wants to do his clinicals and will also ask the academic work load and also clinical work load for next year starting August (which is the new year of school). He also reached out to the class before his and asked them on the tightness of all schedules for next year so he has a good idea of what hes dealing with. He is going to gently ask the advisor if she has a good idea of the timing around nextyear’s summer vacation. I told him that if she has a good idea/sense of next summer’s schedule there’s no need for bringing up our wedding but if she doesnt it’d be a good idea to bring up our plan. He also told me that she has a good standing relationship with his class which makes it a little easier for him to approach her. I hope this helps! and good luck with everything! I realized if things are going to work out they always find a way to work itself out! 

Post # 12
Member
3281 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: January 2014

I’m not sure I can speak to your specific situation, as Darling Husband and I are both doing humanities PhDs, which I think are a bit more flexible. But I’ll tell you what we did!

We got engaged the year before we started our PhDs and got married during winter break of our first year. We have a much longer winter break (about 5 weeks), but I think a week would be plenty of time. I did a lot of the planning the summer before we started our programs, and I didn’t take any time off for the wedding. We had a short honeymoon–I don’t think there’s any way I would have taken time off for a wedding/vacation. I kind of reserve time off for emergencies–don’t want to use up any goodwill!

I generally avoided talking about my upcoming wedding at first, but then when it came up, my advisor and professors were super nice and excited! It worked out well, and I’m glad we didn’t wait longer, honestly. Planning a wedding wasn’t THAT hard, for me at least. It was fine to do it while in coursework.

Post # 14
Member
1321 posts
Bumble bee

Scheduling your wedding for during your break sounds like the safest option. I just started my PhD this past September, but I’m doing my PhD in the humanities and in the UK, so it’ll only take me 3-4 years. I’m from NYC where my SO lives (we’re VERY long distance), so we’re planning the wedding for inbetween dissertation submission and the Viva at the end of my 3rd year (they are pretty flexible here with scheduling the Viva). That way, I can change my name before graduation and the degree.

Post # 15
Hostess
9901 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2014 - Chicago, IL

View original reply
Pupster2016:  I got engaged after the first year of my PhD program and got married like 7 months later I think? It’s super do-able in grad school. I would recommend getting married either after your classes are done or over a holiday. I was done w/ classes when we got married and my advisor let me take a week off directly after. IMO grad school is actually pretty laid back, I wouldn’t stress about it.

I just read your comment about advisors flipping out about pregnancies, and that is the case at my uni too. Actually the first words out of my advisor’s mouth when I announced my engagement were, “I hope you don’t plan on getting pregnant within the next 5 years.” Ouch. Pretty sure that’s illegal to say, but it’s definitely a sentiment that is present in academia… so be prepared for that.

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