Y'all know I loves me some data, and this little nugget from Splendid Insights is a hot nugget. It turns out that generally speaking, almost 70% of us think having the BEST WEDDING EVER matters. Maybe it's not the top priority, but it still matters.
Wedding competition is a pretty fascinating motivator. Like, as if it wasn't enough to plan a public ceremony, AND an expensive party, AND deal with family and friends, AND make a public commitment to your partner… now it's supposed all supposed to be the BEST EVER?!
No pressure, guys.
That's all fine and dandy. I feel like most of us already feel a little chagrined at how much we care about our weddings. Isn't it, like, unfeminist or something? Shouldn't I not care? I probably shouldn't be so competitive…
But you know what? It's freaking hard. It's hard when the stakes are high, and it's a very public event. It's hard when you're investing a ton of resources like money, time, and creative effort. It's hard when, in the current wedding planning climate, every single wedding decision feels like it needs to MEAN something.
It's not enough to have the perfect wedding — it needs to be the perfect UNIQUE wedding, where every detail conveys some Very Important Thing about your relationship or your time together. Where you're not just trying to have a nice day within a reasonable budget, but you're also trying to wow your friends and family (who have probably never all been in the same place together!) with the BEST WEDDING EVER.
Jesus, it's a wonder wedding planning makes everyone act crazy. The pressure.
This is when it gets really interesting to see the couples who opt out of the competition completely. Folks planning destination weddings who are just like “Whatever, give me the ‘rose petals on the beach' package, that's fine. My priority is relaxing.” Other folks who opt for “wedding factory” weddings, knowing they won't be the most unique specialist snowflake weddings ever, but knowing that they won't have to deal with decision fatigue and the overwhelming pressure to make it the BEST WEDDING EVER. Some folks want to save energy for working on the best marriage ever, and that's cool too. For those 30% or so who don't get triggered by the competitive vibe… we salute you!
What about the remaining 70% of us, though? How can we sit with both wanting to impress everyone, while also needing to stay secure?
Well, as always: I think a little perspective is healthy. As Offbeat Bride likegracekelly noted last week:
Yeah, so some couple on The Knot had artisanal barbecue at their wedding three years ago. Well, our community didn't know that and they were thrilled by the novelty of barbecue at a wedding.
Our community had never been to a book-themed wedding, seen Elvish-engraved wedding rings, etc. even if the internet has seen it dozens of times.
It is much easier to go viral if your sample size is smaller.
That last line, though! Unless you're the last of your crew to get married, chances are solid that very few of your guests know much about contemporary weddings. Even if several of your friends have gotten married recently, your wedding is probably going to be the BEST WEDDING EVER if your guests haven't been reading wedding blogs and browsing Pinterest nonstop for the past year.
Now I'll toss the question out to you guys: do you feel like it's really important for people to say yours was the BEST WEDDING EVER? How do you deal with that competitive feeling? Does it not even bother you?