Grooms have a much busier life these days than back in the day when men bought a ring, popped the question, said “I do,” and left for the honeymoon.
Okay, it was never quite that simple, but, if you are engaged to be married, chances are you have already discovered your bride wants you (expects you) to be involved. And, you are okay with that. But, you need to know the rules of the game. You do not want to be surprised – or to be surprising someone else. So, there need to be conditions.
First condition: you want clarity on the expectations.
- What are my responsibilities? (This is the groom’s task list.)
- What are the “don’t go there” places that are controlled strictly by the bride, mother of the bride, etc? Demand to know the boundaries so you don’t cross them.
- What are the things you will do together and are expected to do alone?
Second condition: you want participation/consultation. It is not only your bride’s wedding ceremony; it is also yours. Most men are willing to have the bride and her mother plan the majority of the wedding, so long as there is good communication and general agreement about the couple’s preferences.
Third condition: you want to avoid unnecessary drama. Planning a wedding can be stressful. You want to emphasize the joy and fun of your engagement.
Here are a few suggestions to help ensure your happy life starts off on the right foot. We’re keeping it short and sweet.
- Keep the romance alive during the planning. Tell her you love her with small gifts and gestures that remind her you love her.
- Plan the honeymoon together making sure it meets her dreams.
- Choose one person (usually the groom) to be responsible for making the final honeymoon arrangements. Trust, but verify.
- Register together at your favorite places.
- Plan a bachelor’s celebration of marriage. Think steak dinners, a golf day, poker night, camp out, cigar bar, charter (fishing) boat, you know what you like. Avoid risks that would spoil the celebration, not just for the groom, but for all the men in the wedding party (no drinking and driving, no hospital emergency room). We have all seen the videos of members of the wedding party passing out during the ceremony. We all know how that happens. That is not the wedding video your bride has been dreaming about.
Get memorial gifts for your groomsmen, personal gift for the bride, and something that says “thank you” to her mother and father. For your groomsman gift set think about engraved tie clips, cuff links, or a small pocketknife. For her, something personal, perhaps a limited edition of her favorite book, artwork from a favorite artist, or a piece of fun (inexpensive) jewelry she can wear on the honeymoon. For her parents, consider having a graphics designer make a display of some honeymoon photos.