When we think of weddings, the image that almost always comes to mind is of the beautiful bride, floating down the aisle in all of her white-gowned glory. The months of engagement and planning leading up to the wedding day seem to be all about her, (bridal showers, shopping for a dress, choosing the flowers), and the groom seems left out of all the fun.
Take it from us, grooms: Don't think that all you have to do is show up to the church on time. You've got plenty to do. Consider this article your get-out-of-the-doghouse-free card.
Learn to Excel at Excel
Perhaps the most arduous task of wedding planning is deciding on a budget, which determines how many people you can invite to your ceremony and reception. Help your fiancée make a wedding guest list; if you're familiar with Microsoft Excel, this is the time to flex your skills. Use spreadsheets to keep track of guests' names, addresses, responses and wedding gifts.
And speaking of wedding gifts, score major points with your future wife by offering to help her write thank-you notes. It's a daunting chore, but splitting the job in half makes it easier to conquer.
Pick Your Party
Now, you get to have a little fun. Choose your best man and groomsmen; usually close friends and family, including your father. Be sure to choose your wedding party members wisely -- the men you select should be dependable and responsible. (You don't want your best man revealing a little too much about your bachelor party during his speech because he can't hold his alcohol!)
Your fiancée will also want your input about groomsmen attire. Is your style traditional? A tux or black suit might be the right choice for you. If you have a particular heritage or school uniform you're proud of, maybe your groomsmen can wear kilts or military garb on your wedding day. Be a sport and give your bride final say. She may nix the canes and top hats, so brace yourself for disappointment.
Make It Legal
Tons of thought goes into the reception, but the ceremony requires lots of planning, too. Meet with your wedding officiant in the final months of planning to review your vows, ceremony style and music selection. Your officiant may ask the two of you to complete a pre-marital counseling course. Pre-martial counseling is a great way to discover your individual strengths and weaknesses and how these affect you as a couple.
After meeting with the officiant, purchase a marriage license at the local probate court. Both you and your fiancée will need to be present to sign the papers and provide the court with proper forms of identification. Once you have your marriage license in hand, get it signed by your officiant after the ceremony and mail the completed form back to the probate court. Then, you'll get an official marriage certificate, which recognizes your marriage as a legal union.
Traditionally the groom plans and pays for the honeymoon. Decide on a budget for your trip, and narrow down your destinations based on your interests and how much you'd like to spend. Are you an adventurous couple that would enjoy backpacking across Europe, or a duo that wants to relax and soak up the rays in the Caribbean? The possibilities for a fabulous honeymoon are endless.
Make it your responsibility to pack the plane tickets, passports and your new, shiny wedding bands to take with you on your first trip as husband and wife!
- Emily Post. "Advice for Grooms." (June 22, 2010).http://www.emilypost.com/wedding
- Fox, Sue. "Wedding Etiquette for Dummies." Wiley Publishing, Inc. 2010.
- Gordon, Doug. "The Engaged Groom: You're Getting Married. Read this Book." HarperCollins. 2006.
- Rung, Jennifer Lara and Mark. "The Pocket Idiot's Guide to Being a Groom." Alpha. 2003.