“It’s the woman’s special day”… “Whatever she wants”… “Leave the planning to the women”. These phrases and a hundred derivations of them are what I have been hearing from the day Jane and I became engaged. Two recent incidences though moved me to look again at this issue of wedding planning and the roles of men and women. The first incident was around the choosing of the suits for myself and my groomsmen and having a variety of friends (men included) tell me that all that mattered was Jane’s approval of what we would be wearing. Secondly, I was at the gym last week and speaking to a recently married man about the general stresses of wedding planning. As if to offer me a helpful solution, he told me that he had left absolutely everything to his fiancé at the time. He expressed to her that he was happy to pay for it all, but that he was very busy at work and he knew she wanted to plan it all anyway. I found both incidences frustrating.
I do not like being told that my choices and preferences are somehow secondary, or worst still, not relevant compared to those of my fiancé. Nor do I not need to be told what suit I can wear. I have dressed myself well for 33 years and I will dress myself exceptionally well on our wedding day. I must state immediately that Jane has very much been one to share out this day and for that I am thankful. I am well aware though that wedding planning is by and far the domain of the bride-to-be. I am not trying to buck the trend, nor do I want to assert planning control over the entire event. I do not mind what colour scheme we have, what type of dresses Jane and the bridesmaids wear or what flowers are used, but I do wish to stand up for the general role of men. Read the rest of this entry