Tags: Surviving | Wedding

Surviving a Wedding

Thursday, 29 September 2005 12:00 AM

After an earlier column on "Wedding Psychosis" (

There is little about weddings that hasn't been said or written. But as a recent FOB I offer here a few deep thoughts from the male perspective.

1. Your wrist tendinitis will recover from the check writing much the same as did George Steinbrenner's. A velcro splint will help!

2. If you plan a very small wedding (say, 15-20 or fewer) you don't need a wedding planner. If you have millions in expendable income, you probably don't need my advice. Otherwise procede to number 3 below.

3. Get a wedding planner (WP). Anyone who thinks they can handle a huge, complicated wedding themselves is probably in denial, nuts or in need of immediate psychiatric help. A WP will save you lots of time, money, energy, anxiety and worry. They know all the steps of what, when, where and why. The cost of one mistake in selecting vendors or sites will pay for the WP and more.

4. All parties should agree on a budget, who will contribute and how much. Put this money in a new checking account that will pay the wedding bills. Select one person from the couple to write all checks. When everyone has an "interest" in account preservation, 99 percent of the usual money hassles are eliminated.

5. Select the wedding gown and sites first. Once this is done, the rest falls into line. In my opinion the rehearsal dinner, wedding ceremony, reception and hotel(s) should be at the same or close sites. When many guests are out-of-towners and with some being elderly, it is not considerate or fashionable to ask them to travel three hours between unknown sites.

6. We anticipated some of the humorous wedding fiascos and disasters captured in the movies "Meet the In-Laws," "My Best Friend's Wedding," Wedding Crashers" and "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," but none of these farces occurred.

7. The humorous events, surprises, interesting developments and disappointments came from dealing with the people on the guest list. So be prepared. People are funnier than you think.

You would think that with months of warning and three months to answer, people could respond with a simple yes or no. Not so! The most polite were the invitees from the Midwest who responded immediately with a clear yes or no. Sadly, the worst are the Californians, some of whom want to wait until the last moment to see if the moon, the stars and Mars are in alignment or if they're in the correct celestial mood.

8. Next are those single persons who instantly, like magic, have a significant other they want to bring. So we decided to institute a "No Ring – No Bring" policy.

"Are you engaged?" we'd ask. "No, but we plan to buy a house together."

A lady waited until the last second to say she would be embarrased if not allowed to bring her boyfriend. The "friend," it turns out, was someone she told us three years ago she was no longer seeing.

A young guest, after months of waiting, responded by saying she and her husband were getting a divorce. My daughter suggested she come alone. "Well," she asked, "can I bring my new boyfriend?"

"Are you engaged?" asked my daughter. "No, but we have been going out a long time," responded the friend. Hmm!

9. The Most Disappointing: There are always a few life-long close "friends" whom you have supported through all their endeavers, their kids' engagement parties, showers and weddings plus the endless subsequent baby showers, announcements and "show off the grandbaby" parties – who can't come to your kid's wedding because they promised to sit for their kid's kids. Stuff happens when your kids get married at 32 instead of 22!

10. The Humorous Last Minute Requests: Couple X calls and asks if they can sit with couple Y. Couple Y calls and asks that they not be seated with couple X. Figure that one out and let me know.

11. Try to remember that lots of love and lots of taste do more to make a memorable wedding than lots of money. Weddings are about love – love for each other and the guests – not money. However, all loving presents will be accepted.

12. And don't forget the wedding planner, if you want to enjoy your own wedding and prevent wedding psychosis. For those readers who will write or ask, we used Beth Slavin of Beth Slavin Productions in Orange County.

If none of the above works, we suggest you encourage elopement. If this fails, offer the couple the amount of money it would cost for a wedding. If still turned down, offer the money plus an additional sum as a bribe. If unsuccessful, elope yourself, join the French Foreign Legion or retreat and prepare for the wedding.

And when that special day arrives your wedding, like my daughter's, will be wonderful and memorable for all time.

Robert J. Cihak, M.D., is a Senior Fellow and Board Member of the Discovery Institute and a past president of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons. Michael Arnold Glueck, M.D., is a multiple-award-winning writer who comments on medical-legal issues.

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After an earlier column on "Wedding Psychosis" ( There is little about weddings that hasn't been said or written. But as a recent FOB I offer here a few deep thoughts from the male perspective. 1. Your wrist tendinitis will recover from the check writing much the...
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Thursday, 29 September 2005 12:00 AM
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