Planning an introvert-friendly wedding when you're an extrovert #Advice#compromising#social anxiety#wedding planning April 29 2016 | Catherine Clark bijouxandbits Introverts Unite shirt from StyleWars My partner and I are super different in our feelings about people, parties, and attention. He's very mellow, very emotionally private, and he doesn't really like people to pay attention to him. I'm very excitable, very emotionally open, and I love attention from my loved ones. The contrast is great for our relationship: we balance each other out. However, in planning a celebration of our love, our differences are coming into even greater focus. I am so jazzed about the idea of standing up in front of everyone and proclaiming my love for him, while the thought of doing that in front of a bunch of people makes him deeply uncomfortable. How do we design a celebration that lets him maintain his emotional privacy and lets me express my love in front of our guests? Related Post I thought I was friendless: how my wedding put social anxieties into perspective I've always thought of myself as pretty unsociable. While my husband is Mr. Sociable. In fact, my initial vision for the wedding was a very... Read more Extroverts, Type-As, and those who enjoy being the center of attention usually get the easy path when it comes to enjoying their wedding day. Introverts can have an internal conflict over wanting to celebrate themselves and their relationship, while struggling to be comfortable in the spotlight. I can personally totally relate to that. We've covered similar topics in the past with tips to help the introverted portion of the couple survive and thrive. Hell, we even have some photographer vendors who specialize in this situation. Here are some of our best tips for accommodating both sides of the coin and planning an introvert-friendly wedding: Consider a more private ceremony Introverts and shy folks can blend into a reception far more easily than at the front of a ceremony, which is likely from where a lot of the anxiety will stem. Consider a more private/smaller ceremony and a larger reception, to give a compromise to the day. Reading vows in front of a huge group can be a real palm-sweating moment, even for the most outgoing among us. Try a seated ceremony Who says you have to stand around, locking your knees (guilty myself), and sweating it out standing up during your ceremony? Create a big circle of pillows, a couple of chairs together, or even a cushy loveseat on which to say your vows. Someone show me a ceremony sitting on a big papasan chair, please! Keep things short This is especially true for ceremonies, but can totally be applicable to receptions. Aim to keep your vows short and sweet, and your reception as short as it needs to be to make sure nobody loses their cool somewhere in the fourth hour. Compromise on formality Maybe the formal aspects of the day are feeling restrictive to your more shy partner. If this is the case, consider toning down the formality and allowing a little more freedom in the structure of the day, the attire, and ceremony, if that's cool in your cultural needs. If they'd feel better in something other than a tuxedo, make it happen. Also consider an alternative to traditional receptions. Try a brunch wedding, a laser tag wedding, or skip it altogether and just grab a local brew with your closest pals. You're allowed. Allow downtime for both of you Related Post Eat a private dinner BEFORE your reception Julia and Brad were super duper smart about making sure they had time to eat at their reception: they ate BEFORE it! Here's what they... Read more If you opt for a higher-exposure ceremony, allow for downtime before and after to recharge and chill before the reception. Actually, do this no matter how many guests watch your ceremony. The Jewish tradition of yichud allows for alone time after the ceremony and we dig it. Also plan specific times during the reception to step away and get calm. Venues can often provide a room or an alcove to which to retreat. Keep that in mind when venue searching. Allow for sexy times instead Find what soothes your anxious soul and use it. Maybe it's sexy times. We've talked a little about post-ceremony or mid-reception canoodling, and fully support any and all coitus in which you want to indulge. Nominate someone to protect your space Guests really really want to talk to you, hug you, dance with you, take pictures with you… and who can blame them? You're the hero of the day. Nominating a friend or wedding party member to snag you away when needed (maybe with a quick help text?) can save you from being too bombarded when you really need a break. They can come over and "need" you for "important" wedding "business." Keep your guests busy Another way to prevent being constantly hounded by loving guests is to provide activities to keep them busy and entertained. This could be games, karaoke, photo booths, etc. You can hang out with guests while doing an activity which can be much less full o' pressure than standing around talking. More tips for introverts Wedding survival guide for introverted couples I'm in love with love and I love weddings. You'd think, then, that I would have been excited about the prospect of planning my wedding when I got engaged, but… Read More What suggestions do YOU have for making a safe space for those who shy away from the crowds? Reporter Name * Reporter Email * Original text Enter the original text here. Edited text* Enter your suggested copyedit here. Notes You can add a note for the editor here. * Required information. Fix Typo Catherine Clark Catherine Clark is Offbeat Bride's Senior Editor. In her spare time she loiters at her local library, makes art, watches movies en masse, plays video and tabletop games, poorly cooks healthy things, cuddles with her feline fur baby, and blogs at BijouxandBits.com. @enidjcoleslaw @bijouxandbits @bijouxandbits PREVIOUS Separate, together, and in between: alternative processional ideas from readers NEXT 23 nerdy housewares for your geek kitchen registry Show/Hide comments [ 3 ] Yes to short ceremony! I'm quite shy and had a pretty big wedding, and I found having an amazing officiant and a short ceremony helped so much! Also unlike a talk or a presentation, you aren't looking at the crowd, you're looking at your favorite person, who's saying such wonderful things. When it came right down to it, I found I didn't notice the crowd at all. 1 agrees Reply My sweetie is introverted, I'm extroverted. So I would like to have a very small wedding (immediate family and close friends), simple, short and then adjourn to a good, nearby oceanfront restaurant for brunch. Also considering costs, financial and emotional. I think my extroverted nature will come out in what I wear and decor. 1 agrees Reply My fiance are in the same boat! I am really big on the big public declaration of love and he's very uncomfortable with public performance of any kind. So to make a compromise where we both win, we've written our vows in a call and response style so while they are personal to us, all we have to say in front of everyone is "I do". It's still meaningful but also more comfortable. 1 agrees Reply Join the conversation Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *Comment Notify me of follow-up comments by email. 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