Traditionally, it’s very much the bride’s job to steer the course of the wedding. Indeed, many of us are more than happy to ensure the day goes exactly as we expected. However, in propagating this idea, we’ve created a generation of men who are entirely unaware of the planning and forethought that goes into the average wedding nowadays. Working together is essential, and you might have to find yourself helping him unravel the world of wedding planning, even when you’re trying to keep yourself together.
Share the load
Collaboration is going to help the process of wedding planning to a great degree. You might feel like the wedding is a big personal project, but it can be uneasy for him to watch you do it all yourself. Split the duties, giving one another particular points of focus and checking in on one-another regularly. You don’t have to micromanage each other, but consistent, clear communication is crucial. Do let him know that his groomsmen can play a huge role in helping with research, organizing, and logistics of the parts of it that he’s handling. Many hands make light work, so long as you’re both involved in the final decision making in every aspect.
Visit vendors together
There is no doubt that the majority of wedding vendors and wedding fairs have a very woman-centric approach to them. To the average guy, it can feel like they’ve taken a trip behind enemy lines. If he’s comfortable with it. Then let him run free, but if he’s looking like a deer in the headlights, then visit vendors as a couple rather than taking individual trips. Also, do be aware that some aspects of it, like those wedding fairs, are going be more about him being there to satisfy you. While keeping an eye out for deal-makers, have fun with it. Try out the free food and some of the vintage cars available at many of them.
You are both going to have a much easier time of it if you have a full timeline plotted out leading up to the wedding. This way, you can split the duties by month and focus intensely on those aspects. Without focusing on the sheer mountain of work that seems to be ahead of you. It can be a stressful time, but a lot of that is down to feeling the passage of time without really knowing how close you are to having your plans complete. Laying out a schedule allows you to tackle it one piece at a time and to get a specific look at what’s left to do.
Involving those he loves
Keeping the number of guests reasonable and balanced might be the most important thing to you, but do make sure that the wedding guest list represents both interests. You both have different priorities as to whom you consider the most important people in your life. For instance, you might focus only on your closest friends and your extended family. On the other hand, he might be more inclined to reach out to old college friends he hasn’t seen for years to take part. You might not see why he would prioritize them over the kind of choices you’ve made, but you don’t have to understand it to agree with it. If either one of you has to sacrifice the invites you care about the most, that resentment can stick with you for a long time.
Getting the look right
The aesthetics of the wedding is usually considered exclusively the domain of the bride. That doesn’t have to be entirely true, but do be aware that he’s going to hope that you take the reins. Displeasing you with his choices involves a lot more risk than the benefits of nailing it. Of course, you may very well not be the Bridezilla he fears, but he will be more comfortable if you help him shop for boys wedding suits. That said, do be aware that he might not want you to see him in his suit, or the final choice of the suit itself, before the big day. It’s not as common a tradition as the bride hiding away, but it is a preference for some guys, so you have to respect his choices when it comes down to it.
In with the in-laws
The melding of families is one of the most celebrated aspects of the wedding, but it’s also one of the most tenuous. If his family hasn’t met yours, that will play on both of your minds. You don’t want your wedding to be overrun with more introductions than it already will be, and you want to establish some kind of rapport (and notice some early warning signs if there are any) before the big day. If you haven’t already done it at the engagement party, then organize a day to introduce the in-laws. Keep it casual and light. Choose who’s paying in advance and keep it on “neutral” ground rather than making anyone family come to the other, so there are no prejudices being formed.
Find time for one-another
If you’re splitting wedding duties and focusing on your own side of the build-up; it’s easy for the relationship to feel much more like a series of meetings; between business managers rather than a loving engagement. Do take the time to organize date nights and spend time together without stressing over wedding details. Certainly, it will slip into the conversation. But it’s important to keep the bond nice and warm while the chaos of planning happens all around you. Otherwise, it can be easy to lose sight of what part of the wedding is most important and tension can really start to build.
Working together really is the best not just for him, but for you. If the onus is on one person alone, most often the bride; then resentment can build and the stress of the planning can really get in the way of the big day. Just be aware that he may claim that this all feels foreign to him, so be ready to reassure.