I, being optimistic, was hoping that I wouldn’t have to write this blog post, but we’re three months into social distancing and a month into the wedding season so I don’t think I can put it off any longer.  I am a big believer in the importance of social distancing, flattening the curve, and protecting our most vulnerable communities…My background in public health prepared me to take these measures seriously. However, I also recognize how our current health situation has affected everyone’s plans for their big day and this can be a huge source of stress. I can’t imagine the frustration and pressure you must feel contemplating whether or not you want to plan your wedding for a second time and I am very sorry you’re going through it.  

Deciding whether to downsize your wedding in order to keep your original date or to postpone to a later date is a difficult position to be in for many couples. That is why I wanted to offer you five questions that you should ask yourself and your partner while considering your options.  Remember: there are no right or wrong answers to these questions and your partner’s answers might vary from yours, so it is important to keep an open mind.

How important is our original wedding date and why?

A common reason to keep your original date is that the day held some significance, like being exactly a year from when you got engaged. Another common reason is the date worked for a guest whose presence at the wedding is a top priority. Using video chatting services (i.e. Facebook, Google, etc.) is a great way to make sure that your loved ones are still there while you tie the knot if you decide to keep your original date. 

To keep our original date, would we be happy with a small wedding, keeping to maximum group guidelines, and keeping everyone six feet apart at all times? 

This option requires a lot of planning, almost as much as postponing your wedding, but if your original date is important to you, these are details you have to consider.  It is important to make sure your venue is willing to work with you and has enough space to allow for social distancing.  Another option is to hold the wedding outside; many people are getting married in their back or front yards which is a great option!

Can our budget accommodate changes in plans? 

Vendors are working hard to help couples reschedule their wedding dates, but sometimes that can include additional fees. If a vendor isn’t available on your new wedding date, they might not give you your deposit back, so it is important to think about whether losing a deposit and finding a new vendor fits into your budget. Be sure to communicate with your vendors and have open conversations about what is feasible for you and your budget.

What are our wedding day priorities?

One of you might prioritize a large event while the other is okay with it just being the two of you. Answer individually and remember to keep an open mind. What kind of compromises are each of you willing to make? Your priorities might look different from your partner’s! 

What are our alternatives? 

Many couples are having a small ceremony on their original wedding date and postponing the reception until next year. If you go this route, you could do a vow renewal before the big bash! This is a great opportunity to celebrate your love for each other more than once and with all your guests (talk about having your cake and eating it too)!  As I mentioned earlier, utilizing technology is also a great way to ensure that your loved ones are present if you decide to keep your original date and need to downsize your guest list.

It is okay to be upset and mourn that your wedding day might not happen when or how you envisioned it. These are unprecedented times and it is important that we sit with our emotions and support one another as best as we can. 

Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions or want any advice when it comes to whether or not to reschedule your big day.  Stay safe and well!