6 Wedding Planning Basics for Grooms
The custom of the bride's family arranging and paying for the whole wedding is all but obsolete. Most couples now take on the responsibility and most of the costs for their own destination weddings. But in one way, tradition hangs on: brides-to-be are usually much more invested than grooms in planning their celebration. However, a good groom will not just hand off all the effort and planning to his bride. Even if you have very little interest in wedding fantasies, as a supportive groom, you want to be involved in 6 important ways:
1. Agree on the essentials. Before you start sending out "save the date" cards, you and your bride should work out together what kind of destination wedding you want, where you want to go, who should be invited, and how much you want to spend. Once you've agreed on those essentials, it also helps to talk about about which parts of the planning you and your bride will take on together, and which parts you each will handle on your own.
2. Manage the parents. While you and your bride may have definite ideas about most aspects of your wedding, both sets of parents almost certainly will, too, especially when it comes to the guests, religious elements, or family customs. And these parental wishes are fine - as long as they don't step on what you and your bride want to do. If the bride's parents are applying unwanted pressure, you can let her manage them, while making sure she and her parents know you are on her side. But if your parents are causing the problem, you must run interference. It's your job to let your parents know, very clearly, where they can have their way, and where they must yield graciously to your bride's preference, and yours.
3. Be a budget watchdog. Even though you and your bride agreed to a specific budget at the start of your planning, extra expenses can creep in very easily, when wedding vendors start offering additional services or fancier options that sound really appealing. Without being a Scrooge about it, work closely with your bride throughout the planning to monitor the costs. Look for ways to spend less on services that don't matter to you, so you can spend a little more on things you both really care about. (For some budget friendly ideas, see 6 Ways to Save on Wedding Catering, and 9 Ways to Trim Your Wedding Costs.)
4. Pamper your bride. A dream wedding is usually a much bigger deal for a bride than for a groom. This means that your bride will likely be more stressed out than you are. Watch for signs of bridal stress, and look for ways to help her decompress. This might mean stepping up to help with a planning chore you didn't expect to be involved in, arranging for a massage, or taking her out on a wedding-free date night, so you can focus on each other not the logistics. Or it might just mean being ready to listen to her vent, while offering your unconditional support, and, if she needs it, a shoulder to cry on.
5. Remember, it's a party. In the midst of the pre-wedding stress, remember - and help your bride remember - that you aren't planning the ultimate life event, you are planning a party, so the people you love most can help you celebrate your life together. For both of you, the idea of planning a party may come with a lot less stress than the thought of a wedding. And the best wedding celebration is also a really memorable party.
6. Be a good partner. Through all of the planning, the most important thing you can do is be a good partner to your bride. In a good partnership, both sides work together for the same goal. They support each other, solve problems together, and make important decisions together. After all, isn't togetherness what this is all about?
If you're looking for expert help in choosing your wedding destination and making all the arrangements for the travel and the event, give us a call.