Words of Wisdom From Past Grooms
As much of the joy felt at your wedding comes from actually getting married as it does from finally experiencing the fruits of your labor. Careful preparation is not only paramount, it can be truly rewarding! From Grooms who have learned from their own experiences, we pass on this helpful advice to assist you.
We have provided an overview of your duties as Groom, but you may consider purchasing a copy of "The Groom's Survival Manual" by Michael R. Perry if you want a more detailed resource—some Grooms refer to this text as their Wedding Prep Bible—a very valuable thing to have!
Because you are about to become a team, you should get involved at the early planning stages. Wedding days are much more memorable if you have had a hand in planning the event. Your Bride will unquestionably appreciate you doing some research on various tasks. There are a ton of things to plan—any way that you assist will be kindly received. Being prepared and well-informed has its benefits in multiple ways… your self-assurance and ease will help everyone feel more comfortable—and the Bride's parents will know that you can be counted on.
Often Grooms don't fully grasp that how you plan your wedding with your Bride is critical to starting your marriage out on the right foot! Weddings can be stressful for both the Bride and the Groom—with nerves often on edge and costs accumulating rapidly. There is a lot to consider, but remember, you are setting the stage for future communication patterns! Keep things in perspective and focus on what's really important—none of the details and decisions of your wedding are nearly as valuable as the memories you're creating! This is a major milestone in your life, be sure to enjoy it!
Some Specific Points to Consider…
- With so much to do, your Bride will become overwhelmed at some or several points in time… it's almost inevitable. And while her Maid of Honor, Brides Maids and family will be there to assist, you just might be the only person who can really help. Remember, you needn't have all the answers; sometimes just being an attentive listener can be all that's required to set her mind at ease.
- Choosing your Best Man and the Groomsmen are decisions that can require some truly diplomatic negotiations, but not just for you and them—your Bride and her family will probably have some input on the matter as well. Do your best to consider the long-term pros and cons of your selections.
- Help your Bride to create your engagement announcements, wedding invitations, ring inscriptions, marriage vows, and newspaper announcements to reflect both your values and personalities. This is a thoughtful touch that goes a long way.
- Draft the toast to your Bride early on! In the months you are preparing for the wedding, you want to have plenty of time to rework and refine it. Make it memorable enough to frame, it just might end up in one! You want to be sincere and write something you can be proud of for years to come. No doubt, your Bride will appreciate this declaration of your love for her.
- While tradition dictates that the Bride's family pay for most of the expenses, couples are typically contributing to the bills too. Managing your budget could likely end up on your "TO DO LIST". Unfortunately, this is a task that has a tendency to be trying on the relationship right from the start. Talk openly about it with candor, making sure you and your Bride are on the same wavelength with regard to expenses and budgetary concerns.
- If you don't already live together as many couples do, be sure to coordinate the move well in advance. Perhaps you do live together and will be moving into a new home together, there are a number of things to consider in any move and it's important to start your life as newlyweds in a calm, settled environment.
- You may want to think about taking a few dance lessons, or at least practicing your moves, as the first dance can seem uneasily lengthy when you are not secure in your ballroom skills! Consider this: that good ol' wedding video is pretty much guaranteed to be shown to friends over and over again!
- Make an effort to set up some private time at the reception where you can personally thank both your parents and the Bride's parents. Think about what you are going to say—it will be remembered for a long time, by all of you!
- Make sure to find a special gift for each of your attendants to show them how much you appreciate their friendship and dependability. Your lifestyle may be changing, but you aren't changing your friends! These special guys and gals will always be there in time of need.
- A final practical point—if you plan on staying at the reception for several hours and will be drinking, have a designated driver or hire a late night limousine service. And if you happen to be staying in an unfamiliar area, be sure you know the address and have a good handle on how to get there.