The ‘Disengaged’ Fiance: Getting Your Fiance Involved in the Wedding
It’s a common scenario: You can’t wait for your wedding day. Your fiance can’t wait for it to be over.
With engaged couples, one of the two parties is usually way more into the wedding planning than the other. Not surprisingly, the disinterested party is usually the groom.
In the past, wedding requirements for men largely consisted of showing up at the wedding (preferably sober) 2) being reasonably well-groomed and 3) wearing a tuxedo. Brides today, however, often expect grooms to fully participate in the wedding planning process. But many men continue to display stereotypical aversion to all things wedding-related.
On rare occasions, the bride is the one who is apathetic. If she didn’t really want a wedding—but got wrangled into one by her fiance or her family—she may be less than helpful. And some men—especially creative or sentimental types—are highly engaged throughout the wedding planning process.
If your fiance is indifferent to the wedding, trying to engage him or her in the process can be challenging. Here are some tips to help:
Coping with an Apathetic Fiance
Don’t take it personally—If your fiance seems uninterested in you, that is a problem. But if your fiance merely seems uninterested in the details of the wedding, don’t worry too much. Some people simply aren’t wired to be as excited or opinionated about aesthetics, tradition, or ceremony. Your fiance isn’t trying to hurt you—he or she may just feel overwhelmed by the process.
Keep perspective—Weddings are beautiful things: a public expression of the love shared between you and your fiance. But weddings are also temporary in nature. Don’t let the chaos of planning a wedding distract you from what is most important: planning a life together.
Communicate—Help your partner understand why the wedding details matter to you. Give your fiance grace to not feel as passionately about the actual wedding as you do. But let him or her know that you still need their emotional (and sometimes logistical) support.
Assign tasks—Sit down with your fiance and a list of wedding responsibilities. Then ask your fiance what tasks he or she would like to tackle. Men may feel more comfortable helping out in the areas of food and music/entertainment.
Prioritize your need for input—Few men truly care about the color of the napkins, flowers, or bridesmaids’ dresses. Don’t demand input from your fiance on every single detail. If you really need input from him/her, try narrowing down the options first. Then present him/her with a couple of choices. Just be prepared to live with your fiance’s decision. No one likes to be asked his/her opinion and promptly have that opinion dismissed.
Find external support—While your fiance may not think wedding planning is fun, plenty of other people are usually happy to lend a hand. Reach out to your friends, family, and bridal party for support.
Hire a good wedding coordinator—The wedding coordinator is often the first thing people cut from their budget. But a coordinator can take a huge weight off both you and your fiance. You are a lot less likely to become a bridezilla (or groomzilla) if a professional is there to crack the whip for you.
Have date nights—As the wedding approaches, it can be difficult to focus on anything else. Be sure to make room for date nights. Commit to not discussing wedding details during that time. Your fiance probably needs a breather from wedding talk; you probably do too.
Focus on the positive—There is a silver lining for having a fiance who doesn’t enjoy wedding planning: sole creative control. You may think you want your fiance to be more involved in the decision-making. But what if he or she starts giving you input you don’t like? If you have strong opinions about the wedding, having a relatively un-opinionated fiance isn’t necessarily the worst thing.
Your fiance may not care as much as you about the details of your wedding. But so long as he or she truly cares about you, you will be fine. Remember the main objective is not a perfect wedding, but a strong, loving, and lasting marriage.