I attended the wedding of my god-sister not long ago. It was quite a lot of fun. However, I’ve listened to a lot of comedians talk about the tension that wedding attendance can bring when you’re in an adult relationship. Luckily, this is was not the case for me, but my comfortable viewpoint at the wedding did grant me much perspective on how things could get weird for someone else. Namely the someones in a couple who have an over-a-year relationship, when they’ve kind of talked about marriage, but not in depth, and the conversation is on the table, but maybe there’s some Saran wrap on there to keep it fresh over a non-decided-upon stretch of time. By identifying the no-nos, I’ve come up with a list of efficient ways to keep the pressure off your own relationship during a wedding weekend. For some, the tension is real. With these tips, you can keep the tension as minimal as possible.
Oh, but obviously if you’re trying to get someone to marry you hard, do the opposite of all these things. It’ll most likely work out in your favor, though I’ve never tested it myself.
Avoid Eye Contact At Key Moments
There are several times during the ceremony and reception when eye contact could be misread as pressuring, meaningful, or really intense. To avoid accidentally making eye contact at these tension points, identify them beforehand. Obvious contenders include the vows, the ring exchange, the kiss, the walking down the aisle, the first dance, the cake-smashing, and the toasts. The toasts are probably a time to avoid but, depending upon various factors, they might be quite safe. For instance, if a sex joke has just been made. In that case your eye contact may be misconstrued, but then it would be identified with quite different intentions.
Have A Buffer
Tricycles are baller. Let’s just admit it. You won’t fall over by accident on a tricycle. If you somehow do, you must have been trying awfully hard. A third wheel is a safeguard, and that goes for humans as well as non-motorized vehicles. At a family wedding or the wedding of a close friend, this is easier. Grab a cousin or a single person you happen to know at your table or even your sibling. Nothing takes the pressure off a date like a third person. This works so well that if you aren’t already dating someone, the third person turns a date into a non-date! Magic! Finding a third wheel at a wedding where you don’t know many people can be hard, but it’s never impossible. Hang with the single ladies, there’s probably someone going stag at your table, and make it more of a group-party vibe than a “Hey, look how happy those people are who are going to spend the rest of their lives together, don’t you want to spend the rest of our lives together? Don’t you? DON’T YOU?!?” vibe. That vibe can get a little bit uncomfortable.
Avoid All Older People
No offense old timers, but the bulk of you are damn annoying about matters of the heart. Especially in terms of marriage. I literally avoid talking to my grandpa since Adam and I have started dating, as that now seems to be all he’s capable of talking about. It’s gotten somewhat offensive at this point. He’s just “so glad” about me finding someone, “feeling better” about me moving to the city now that I have someone along to “protect me.” Let’s be real, that's downright gross. Some old people are truly cool, truly not going to ask you about who you’re dating and what your plans are for the future and yada yada, but a wedding is not the time to get trusting. It’s the time for avoidance! The kind of avoidance on par with The Hunger Games. The age that you deem your “avoidance point” may fluctuate, depending on what the general demographic is, but I think you’re smart enough to know who’s going to push the buttons that are not theirs to push.
BE THE PARTY
Look, there are a lot of tropes about how weddings are supposed to make you feel. When you’re single at a wedding it’s easy to get swept up in feeling like an island, questioning your romantic future, “Oh God, am I going to die alone?” and all that. In a relationship you can get distracted by, “Wow, how romantic, this is what romance is supposed to look like” and weird pressures that aren’t really there. The truth is, and this is important, this day isn’t about you. It’s about none of us, unless we are the bride or the groom. So you know what we’re there to do? Celebrate them with a real, visceral celebration. Dance in a large group, sing, devour buffet food like it's your job. Make jokes. Hang out with the group of children, who are probably the only people there who aren’t associating wedding stuff with the state of their own lives. Kids just want to have a good time. So should you. AND focus on the coolness of the bride and groom as individuals, rejoice for their happiness, etc. etc. You love them. They love each other. No other love should steal focus.
Now go out there and party like you aren’t going to punch your SO if they don’t propose by V-day! (Again, this is not my secret punching plan. Do not plan on my wedding anytime soon, if that wasn’t super duper obvious.)