Many people dream of getting married from a young age. There is still a huge societal pressure to tie the knot, whether you’re single or in a relationship. Could the idea of getting married be getting in the way of your happiness?
If you’re single and heading towards thirty, you’ll know it’s near impossible to attend a family function without someone inquiring about when you’re getting married.
But is marriage more important to you than being genuinely happy? Are you worried that if you remain single that people will assume you’re not satisfied with your life? Or are you concerned about being left behind if you don’t get married?
It’s good to take a step back and assess your attitude towards to getting married before taking the plunge. These 5 signs indicate that you’re investing too much into the ceremony of getting married and not enough into your own happiness.
1. You set a date to get married around on a self-imposed deadline.
Whether it’s the pressure of turning 30 or the prospect of raising a child out of wedlock, lots of people impose deadlines on themselves for when the ‘should’ be getting married. Even though most millennials identify as atheists, many still seem to buckle under the pressure of getting married before having a child.
This is largely due to pressure from generations who are unfamiliar with the long list of alternatives to married life, including co-habiting, single parenthood, civil partnership and co-parenting.
If you feel like you’re falling into this trap, seek out advice from people who are taking an alternative route. If it’s your age you’re worried about, ask a happily single 50-year-old about their life. Or if it’s single parenthood anxieties, chat with an inspiring Mum or Dad who is raising a child alone. It will give you a fresh sense of perspective.
2. You plan a wedding that is way over your budget.
Did your plans start out small and within your budget? Are they now wildly out of control? Lots of couples find that they start agreeing to all sorts of wedding plans in order to just get on with the day.
Suddenly your guest list has tripled and your giving everyone a three-course meal, a far cry from the finger buffet with your family that you imagined.
To avoid getting bulldozed into plans that are over your budget, write down your wedding wishes before you dive into the nitty-gritty. Check back in a couple of months in and make sure you’re plans aren’t snowballing and you’re not incurring costs that you can’t afford.
3. You compare your wedding plans to other peoples.
We all compare ourselves to others and we all know this is a bad habit. It’s very tempting to take notes on other couples’ wedding venues, band, food, friends, honeymoon plans (the list goes on and on), but this is a very slippery slope.
Not only are you more likely to be unsatisfied with your own wedding day, this behavior suggests that you’re too focused on the logistics of the day and what other people think rather than how much you will enjoy yourself.
Remind yourself why you want to get married in the first place and try and put happiness at the center of your plans.
4. You forget to consult your partner on the wedding plans.
Planning to get hitched should bring couples closer. However, all to often it can reveal imbalances within relationships. This is especially the case when wedding plans seem to differ. Perhaps one of you imagines eloping at Gretna Green whilst the other wants a huge white wedding.
Whatever the differences are, make sure you consult your partner on the plans and find out what will make both of you happy when it comes to the big day.
5. You sacrifice self-care to prepare for the perfect wedding.
It’s time to take a step back if you start to sacrifice self-care and enjoyment to make room for wedding plans. Yes, the color scheme may be important to you but don’t let it dominate your leisure time. Not just for your own sake, but for your partner and friends.
If all you’re talking about is the upcoming wedding then make an effort to change the subject. Still have date nights, still keep up with your friends and work life, if you don’t you are likely to feel an absence once the big day has passed.
Finally, if and when you do decide to get married, make sure you’re realistic about your expectations of life after the big day. Thanks to Hollywood romances there are many common misconceptions about the joys of married life.
But, just because getting married might not turn out exactly like the movies, doesn’t mean it’s not worth it.
By Ruth N.