I've been running into this phrase a lot lately. I understand there's this idea floating around that the wedding is entirely the purview of the woman, and she controls all the minute details. I also know there's a marriage philosophy that states that a woman is in charge of her husband, and has to "train" him to be the good little gofer that she needs to serve her every whim.
Anyone who knows us as a couple knows that if I pulled that domineering girlfriend bit, he'd shut that shit down in a hurry (by respectfully telling me to knock it the fuck off already). As well he should, since I personally don't think it's acceptable to treat your life partner like a three-year-old. We're both fiercely independent people, and our relationship works on a system of allowing each other do to our own thing, after discussing boundaries we can both agree upon.
So am I going to "let" him keep his beard for the wedding?
Since when am I in charge of his facial hair? I love him with his beard, and his beard makes him happy. Why on earth would I make him shave it off just for wedding pictures?
Am I going to "let" him wear a kilt?
Uh, he doesn't get to decide what I wear, so why should I dictate what he's wearing? We've had a conversation about the vision of our wedding attire, and I expect both of us to follow that vision.
Am I going to "let" him go to Vegas for his bachelor party? Or "let" him go to a strip club?
If I were uncomfortable with these things, I would express my concern and ask him if he would consider something else. But no, I'm not pulling the "you are not ALLOWED to get a lap dance!" Sometimes I watch those wedding shows and literally cringe in horror when a bride crashes the bachelor party and throws a hissy fit in the parking lot.
You're "letting" him plan the ceremony music/pick the menu/figure out the honeymoon flights?
Why yes, I am, because he's a big kid, who's more than capable of making plans. It's not like all his adult-type skills disappear when they are pointed in the direction of A WEDDING.
Many of these questions are coming from friends and family that haven't batted an eye at our offbeat wedding plans. The beard one really threw me for a loop. I guess I figured that if I "allowed" him to have it in real life, it would follow that I was "allowing" it to stay for our wedding.
I think that compromise is bedrock to a good relationship. Therefore, one of us might get to do something the other one isn't really thrilled about or impressed by. And yes, there might be things that I am flat-out not comfortable with him doing. But if that's the case, then as an adult I need to express my concerns and feelings, and let him know how that particular action would effect me and our family. And then he decides if those concerns are enough to keep him from doing said behavior, or if this would be a deal-breaker. Having a hissy fit or giving out ridiculous ultimatums just seems… sad.