Post # 1
Okay fellow bees, I’m turning to you so that I don’t have daily marriage convos with the SO. Background info: SO is Indian, I am American. We are not yet engaged. (Fingers crossed!)
His mother wants us to come to India this summer (June to July) to get married – most days she likes me but doesn’t like that we live together. SO didn’t say no to her and I know he plans for us to go there together this summer. I really feel a proposal could come within the next six months for a number of reasons.
With all of that said, and as much as I want to be married, I don’t think it will feel like I am married until I have some sort of American wedding. I don’t need an extravagent event, just a few guests, a white dress, some vows and my handsome fellow at the end of the ailse. I really don’t want a wedding for show either. I wonder if MY wedding, the second American wedding would feel less significant after being legally married in India.
So the question is has anyone been in a similar situation? Have you had two weddings more than a few weeks apart? How did you feel about it? Thanks ladies.
Post # 3
I haven’t done it yet…but I might have to as well. We’re not sure how we’re going to make it work because I’m very against the idea. Unfortunately, my FI’s family is all in Kuwait and we live here. But we are having the actual wedding in Canada.
I think what I’d like to do is get married in Canada first and then do some sort of small family celebration here. But there’s a lot that we have to work out. Like if we can get married in Canada (since he’s not Canadian and I’m a non-resident) and how that transfers to Kuwait.
I know how you feel.
Post # 4
we’re having our american “wedding” about 4-5 months after our legal danish wedding. it doesn’t bother me but danish weddings aren’t really all that different than american weddings. indian weddings are a whole other animal though so I can understand why it might bother you. can you maybe have the small american wedding first? or would that cause trouble with his mother?
Post # 5
I live overseas in an expat lifestyle so I know a LOT of inter-cultural couples who have done this. A good friend of mine is Indian and her husband is American and they did exactly what you are thinking- having a wedding in India and in the US. I think it’s really common among couples with family from two different countries.
As you probably know, in India weddings are just about the most important thing in Indian society. (I’m an American living in India for the past two years). Families save up for decades to pay for weddings, ceremonies have 500+ people at them, astrologers are consulted, and every aunty has a hand in picking the perfect bridge/groom since a child is born. An Indian wedding with all the Indian traditions is extremely important to your Future Mother-In-Law and your boyfriend’s family, likely more so than it is to most of our American parents.
As someone who is marrying into a Mexican family, I have realized how important it is to integrate both cultures into the wedding. It’s not just a wedding of two people, it’s a wedding of two families and two traditions, and this couldn’t be more true for an Indian family.
If I were you, I would have an American wedding first in the US and then an Indian wedding in India. It’s a compromise- you get your wedding first but you also participate in the numerous traditions of an Indian wedding that will be very important to your future family and husband. Of course you shouldn’t ignore all of your wishes and hopes for your wedding- that sould take center stage in your American ceremony. And I’m not suggesting you do EVERYTHING your Future Mother-In-Law wants. Just that a wedding is so important in India and it could be a wonderful way of starting your new marriage into your boyfriend’s family.
And another thought- there will be additional requests by your future in-laws to have Indian ceremonies as a significant part of your life with your boyfriend. The naming ceremony, threading ceremony, and rice ceremony for your children, for example, may be some that feature prominently. Figuring out early how to balance your two cultures early, including recognizing what is really important to you and really important to your Future Mother-In-Law, is important 🙂
Post # 6
@indiblue: I totally agree with what you are saying. I am completely open a wedding with both cultures or even two events on the same day. (I know I have an expectation for a wedding and he does too, there is no reason both our dreams can’t be realized).
I guess my issue lies 1) in the time frame and 2) that within this timeframe the indian wedding has to come first. We would most likely not have another India trip til the end of next year (2013). I would much rather do as you are saying with an American (that I see as a more solemn ceremoney) followed by Indian (celebratory ceremony with vacation) a short time later.
Its a tough call, and particulary tough when I think it could be being planned and I may know for a couple more months. Future Mother-In-Law can go nuts with planning – it can be her wedding, that doesn’t bother me.
I believe both of us will feel married with a white dress American ceremony, and I mostly worry about diminishing that experience by being techically being married months beforehand.
Post # 7
@jenangeles: I didn’t think it would be a problem with Future Mother-In-Law until she said this the other day. I think she just wants us to stop being heathens and get married. 🙂 Now that she has said it, I worry that it may be a problem since she has it in her head (and has lots of time on her hands) and since I am a “waiting” bee, out of the loop, and unsure of the SO exact plans.
I function better with plans, followed by back up plans, followed by back up plans. If it comes up again, I will at least have all of your suggestions to go on for the back up plan. 🙂 I only worry that by the time SO gets the ring and pops the question, that there won’t be enough time for me to plan an Am. wedding. And thank you for your input. Its nice to know there are people with two very different wedding dates.
Post # 8
@Kewii: My sympathies to you as well… 🙂 Its tough. And I think I am also being a bit stubborn and really don’t want to do anything out of my prefered order. Maybe that’s how bridezillas are born? I hope not. Hopefully, the ladies can offer us both some advice!
Post # 9
I don’t think it’s stubborn for you to want to do an American wedding first. I think it’s a completely appropriate compromise for you to have the American wedding first and the Indian wedding later in India. You are giving in by having an Indian wedding and your Future Mother-In-Law is giving in by not having the Indian wedding first.
Your boyfriend may need to speak with his mother to ensure she understands that it’s a give-and-take. After all, it’s his wedding too. My fiance’s parents were upset we weren’t having our wedding out in California where they live, even though we have a LOT of Mexican/Catholic traditions in the wedding to honor them. I think families tend to forget there is another family/spouse/culture involved in the wedding besides their own. It’s a balancing act but I’m sure once your Future Mother-In-Law gets to start helping you with your sari and mahendi and all the ceremonies that go along with the Indian wedding she will be overjoyed to have you in her family!
Good luck!! 🙂
Post # 10
@sweetmagnolia: sounds completely opposite to my Future Mother-In-Law. 🙂 mine was more concerned with babies than him making an honest woman out of me. although to be fair, the living together without getting married is done quite frequently here. usually you only get married after you have popped a few out and have a “reason” to get married.
there’s always the option to plan out your american wedding now and then when he proposes having the plans all ready to go… 😉 either that or have a chat with your SO about how it would be important for you to have the american wedding first and that he just keep that in mind when figuring out when to propose given your FMIL’s timeline and the fact that weddings (even small, simple ones) do take some time to plan.
Post # 11
@sweetmagnolia: Is there any reason why you couldn’t have a simple American wedding a couple of weeks before the Indian wedding?
I’m Malaysian, FI’s English, and it was really important to us that we should have a wedding in each of our respective countries, so that was part of our planning from the beginning. I was initially worried about one wedding feeling more “real” than the other — the English wedding is happening first and will look more like the kind of wedding you see in movies etc. — but I’ve kind of calmed down about it now. The weddings will be super different, we’ll be performing different rites and different family members will be in attendance, so it won’t really feel like the same thing happening twice. I’ve chosen to think of it as one wedding strung out over the space of two weeks. 😛
Post # 12
You should message Jenn23. She had an Indian wedding and an American wedding that were a handful of months apart (Nov ’09 for India, April ’10 for US).
Here’s her two separate recaps if you’re interested!
Post # 13
@Mrs.KMM: Thanks for letting me know about this thread in a PM!!! 🙂
Hi, OP…been there, done that! I had my India wedding in Nov 2009 and U.S. wedding in April 2010. (exactly 5 months apart) I will say it was a little stressful, but not too crazy. I thought I’d be a little upset about having the Indian wedding first, but honestly, it didn’t bother me at all. And the reason we had the Indian wedding first was because I hadn’t met his parents and since they weren’t coming to the U.S. for the American wedding, just as my family wasn’t going to India for the Indian wedding, it wouldn’t have been “right” for us to get married here without his parents having even met me in person! So we chose to get married there first, then here in PA. Once we got back from India, I dove feet first into planning the American wedding and it was absolutely amazing! Both weddings were great! What specific questions do you have for me? I’d love to share and help in any way I can! 🙂
Post # 14
We are having two (actually, 3!!) separate weddings across countries.
My husband (who is from Turkey) and I had a city hall ceremony in September of 2011. It was a small ceremony with my family and his cousin and best friend (his family lives in Turkey).
We had always planned to have two receptions, one in New York and one in Turkey. In fact, his extended family in Turkey are learning that we are “engaged” in order to follow proper Turkish tradition. I haven’t met his family yet… we are going to Turkey in February for our “engagement party”, and will announce our wedding to them a few months after we arrive back in the states. Everyone in the US, his immediate family in Turkey, and our friends in Istanbul already know about our marriage. Whew! Talk about complicated!!
We will have one reception here in New York, to which we hope his parents will attend, and one in Turkey, where again, we hope my parents can join us. It does seem excessive to have 2 receptions, but each of them will be a truly unique experience for each of the cultures involved, and as my husband says “We only get married once, may as well celebrate”. (Well, technically you only get married once, non-technically we’re getting married 3x!)
Anyway, I hope this helps! I say go for it. I don’t think any of your weddings will feel less special as they will both be filled with love and tradition. 🙂
Post # 15
sorry for the delay guys…
@indiblue: thank you!
@Mrs.KMM: thank you for getting jenn23 into this.
@multinational: wow. i dont even know how you can keep that straight!
@hobbitsvselves: that is probably my biggest concern that one will feel more real than the other. 🙂 i appreciate your perspective and i think you are right. each will be so different from the other there shouldn’t be any competition so to speak between the two.
Post # 16
and @Jenn23: fabulous! you bees are awesome. between you and the pps with danish and tuekish weddings this actually seems do-able.
like you, i haven’t met his entire family, and with the timing of all of this, combined with our american lives and upcoming plans, mean if we want anything in india, it will have to happen this summer or 1.5-2 years later. and thats way too long. i have never wanted a big to-do for a wedding, so 2 weddings (and esp. 1 indian) seems extravagant.
like i said its not official yet, but judging by the pace of our friends, indian weddings are decided upon and seem to happen very quickly and i would like to be prepared. your post has really made me feel better about two weddings not being close together. the delay allows enough time to really get excited and have time to plan the american portion. i would estimate our timeline to be about the same, wedding 1 in summer wedding 2 in winter.
i guess my major question, right now, was about your feelings towards wedding 1 and wedding 2. it seems as tho both were special, and neither detracted from the other… how does your husband feel? i wonder if each of you feels more connecte to “your own” wedding? how involved were you in your indian wedding? i wouldn’t even know where to begin. i think that would be a lovely project for the fmil. 😉 do you celebrate both weddings? if you have to choose one, which do you choose as your anniversary?
ok thats enough for now.
**thanks to all you bees**