Isn’t your marriage more important than the wedding?  Now would be a fantastic time to keep a firm
hold on perspective. Make sure that appreciation of the memory is mutual by
reaching agreement about your marriage ceremony in general.

There is only one “should”: “NO SHOULD’S”. It’s your ceremony, your way.

Charles and Michael, clients of mine, are a beautifully suited pair. They had been friends and colleagues for 8 years before deciding to marry. It was then that for the first time, they bumped into each other’s dark sides over wedding details and minutiae. You might say it was symptomatic of deeper problems. Well, sometimes it is and sometimes it is only symptomatic of how self indulgently righteous we are all capable of being over how this day of days should be staged.
The good news was Charles and Michaels enjoyed pleasing each other. The bad news was they tried to please everyone else as well. And unfortunately, they ended up pleasing everyone but themselves.
Whether its guest list, location, or celebrant, the two of you must agree or agree to disagree. You are not clones.  Celebrating your differences can be as close a connection as being on the same page.
Whatever the detail/problem is use this simple dispute breaker.  Each of you states on a scale of 1-10 how much it matters to him. If you care at a 3 and he’s an 8 surrender instantly.
Review and deal with the ones that you can dispense almost immediately. Put the other issues aside so each of you has time to think them through a second time and do another scale vote. This will be your first venture into true marriage compromising.
Remember that friends, family, or staff can help realize your wishes but a committee of the two of you should make all executive decisions. The investment of both of you in making these decisions helps guarantee memories that will warm both of your hearts. The writing of personal vows can often become the biggest deal breaker of the ceremony. If either of you wishes to create personal vows, here’s how :
  1. Start
    with your words only and write from your heart. Cut and paste from the Internet
    if you wish . That’s OK. If you’ve heard it in another ceremony – fine –
    borrow. But please don’t collect personal opinions other than those of
    your prospective spouse.
  2. Write
    without editing: articulate your feelings about marriage, your love for
    your partner, and the ways in which he enhances and inspires you.
  3. Ask
    your partner for his favorite things you’ve said or written and include
    them. Be light if you wish: you must know by now what your husband-to-be
    finds amusing (and if you don’t, consider postponing the wedding). And
  4. remember:
    even the slightest dig can be uncomfortable and questionable .
  5. Keep
    it relativity brief (200 words maximum) -brevity is a boon to poignancy.
  6. Make a
    copy of vows and write on note cards – you do not want to worry about
    losing them and if memory fails,            read.
  7. If you
    memorize, don’t over practice. You aren’t running for office or competing
    with your mate.
Sincerity at every turn is what captures the beauty of the moment. The ultimate aim should be a heartfelt ceremony based on genuine feelings.
The only “should ” you need to worry about is how to create indelible and positive memories of how you worked together to plan your wedding day.Janet Blair Page, PhD, author of Get Married This Year: 365 Days to “I Do”, {Adams Media). is a relationship expert with more than thirty years of experience in private practice in New York and Atlanta. She taught at Emory University for twenty-two years and has been featured in the New York Times, Glamour Magazine,, and U.S. News and World Report and on CNN, HLN, FOX, Good Morning America, and The Early Show. For more information please

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