A Stress-Free Wedding?

If you hunt around the web or in bookstores or just talk to random people in the streets it’s easy to get the idea that getting married in and of itself is going to make you a basket case feared – at least temporarily – by your nearest and dearest. We here at Manolo for the Brides do not believe this is an inevitable situation. Indeed, we hate the way the term ‘Bridezilla’ is used to both punish the timid bride who just wants her own way about one or two things and trivializes ongoing abusive behaviors from those who have long made a habit of stepping on every toe but their own.

On the other hand, we know that stress can cause bizarre blowouts in even the most rational person, no matter what their gender or what activity they are involved in.

There are also a lot of guides out there for ‘stress-free’ weddings. I have to say, though, that I think this concept in and of itself can cause nearly as many problems as the assumption of bridal insanity as a universal truth.

Of course planning a wedding gets stressful here and there. Chances are it’s the biggest, most elaborate party you’ll ever throw; there are huge amounts of unspoken cultural, religious, and philosophical baggage to wade through with nearly every person you deal with; this may be the first time you’ve actually dealt with serious, grown-up contracts…there are a million reasons why you might be stressed.

If you start to believe the propaganda that this will never stress you out unless you (bad bride!) allow it to do so, it can become just as toxic a way of looking at things as assuming that you are somehow required by natural law to behave like a rampaging beast. Why? Because then it’s all your fault if you ever get upset.

So I’m here to tell you that there is no need to forget anyone else’s feelings while planning your wedding…and somewhere along the line something is probably going to make you snap.

There are a lot of things you can do to take pressure off yourself and minimize your bridal stress, of course. You can do your best to get enough sleep and eat balanced meals. You can take breaks from planning and delegate responsibilities to trusted lieutenants. You can do your best to keep lines of communication open with everyone involved. You can give yourself little treats that remind you of life beyond the wedding itself. You can hire vendors whose work you can depend on.

But I’m here to tell you as one of the calmest brides of my acquaintance, there will be some stress somewhere.

And really, it’s okay. It doesn’t make you a bad person or a failure of a bride.

So when it happens and you reach your breaking point, excuse yourself and do something to calm down. Once you are calm, go back into the fray and find a way to make things work.

Hey, it’s what you would do in any other stressful situation, isn’t it?

2 Responses to “A Stress-Free Wedding?”

  1. I always think that of course there’s going to be stress! Planning any huge party is stressful, otherwise people wouldn’t take their business to halls and restaurants with big back rooms. Brides and grooms just need to remember that planning a wedding doesn’t have to be more stressful than planning any other party if you don’t let things like goofy family issues or such-and-such cake flavor being unavailable become the end of the world.

    Looking back, I should have handled things like that…

  2. KTB says:

    I planned my wedding while working full time and going to graduate school full time. My life was stressful whether I liked it or not. Once I finally realized that my friends and family didn’t think I was a Bridezilla when I delegated or made decisions, it became vastly less stressful. Luckily for me, I have great friends and family who made the experience and the day pretty much perfect.

    And an awesome husband who forced me to lay on the beach, read trashy novels, and drink a cerveza or two during the honeymoon.