To elope or not to elope

Postby Anniedream » Sat Jan 28, 2017 12:25 pm

Like the rest of the world, we had an unsettling 2016. Quite unbelievable in some respects. Hypocritical old me gets annoyed when people blame a year, essentially a number, for their bad luck and misfortunes. However, 2017 was set to be THE year.
Back in March my longstanding boyfriend proposed to me (I thought she said she had a bad 2016) and after 7 years together, we were eager to get hitched, so the wedding plans commenced. Before being engaged I spoke to multiple brides and I kept hearing how stressful weddings were to plan. My fiancé and I kept saying how we were going to have a straightforward, no fuss wedding and both contribute equally to the day, in order to minimise the stress; we had no idea what was to come. Apart from our original marriage abroad phase, that quickly ended, everything was going so smoothly. Venue; third one we saw, booked. Dress; third shop I went it, brought. Photographer; met at our first wedding fair, booked. Honeymoon; knew what we wanted, booked. Save the dates; vistaprint, sent. With some unfortunate circumstances throughout the year, our plans began to halt. It seemed too soon to get everything else organised. I asked my girls to be bridesmaids and they were organising what was meant to be the most incredibly 'me' hen, that even I would not have planned.
So, for those of you who are still reading, I have drawn you in with our wedding story so far and you've probably inferred that something will drastically change. This is the part where it did. 2017.
As it was now 'our wedding year' we started to get a move on with our plans and contacted florists, looked at invites, I ordered some bridesmaid dresses, but that all soon changed in the blink of an eye and it was all down to one thing...families.
The old saying goes 'we can't choose our family'. I thought we were choosing our own family, a family for my fiancé and I to start together; 'it's just us two' we always used to say.
I'm not going to blame anyone in particular for all this next part, I truly believe it was a culmination of factors that led our families to fall out. My fiancé' sister got married in the November and my sister, a dress maker, altered the bridesmaid dresses for her. A text was sent regarding money (never a good issue) that was misinterpreted and my sister took as passive aggressive and was upset by it, so she did not attend her wedding. Naturally, as they were both bridesmaids for me, this caused tension when they were organising my hen. My fiancé' sister kept messaging my fiancé about how she has organised everything with the hen and how my own sister has done nothing to help, which obviously upset me. Another one of my bridesmaids, my best friend, observed the tension between our sisters and came to me to ask if I knew anything. I told her about the bridesmaid dress situation and she agreed, that for mine and my fiancé' sake, she would sort it for us. My mum and sister then came round to mine and vented about how my sister has been pushed out of the hen do plans and they feel as though my fiancé' sister was taking control of it all and snapping at every comment made. I naturally defended my fiancé' sister as she was like a sister to me but I just didn't want to be in the middle. I told my sister to meet up with my fiancé' sister in order to sort things out. This 'sorting' came in the form of a text message which my sister sent. As soon as she sent it my fiancé' sister was on the phone to my fiancé asking where this had all come from and that she was going to drop out of being bridesmaid...and that is just the start. My sister asked to meet up to discuss everything with her, like I asked her to, and she blocked her on Facebook. The next day, my sister put a comment, on Facebook (see what problems comes from social networking) making a remark about people wanting dress altering/making for next to no money - bit inappropriate regarding the circumstances and after a comment from my fiancé telling her so, she removed it. Then, my sister's boyfriend then messaged my fiancé asking him why he messaged the photo saying 'inappropriate'. Why he felt the need to get involved, I do not know but I just think he wanted to create more drama. I called my mum to inform her that my fiancé and I decided that all this juvenile behaviour and petulance had to stop and we were getting married for the two of us, so we decided we were going to elope. This created an argument and some things were said that shouldn't have been said about various people, myself included. My fiancé said something silly to my mum too in defence and I was left in tears. The families won't meet up to resolve this.
There is a reason I am giving you all facts and no opinions, make of it what you will. But mine and my fiancé' opinions on the whole matter has meant that he is now my ex fiancé. Am I heartbroken? Am I beside myself with anxiety and fear anymore? Do I think it's for the best? Questions that keep circling my mind.
We are all imperfectly perfect; that's what makes us so real. Just fed up of the shaming and blaming that left us completely in the middle. Things happen. We've moved forward and we're going to learn from this, hopefully.
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#1

Postby Livetowin » Sat Jan 28, 2017 1:09 pm

Just to clarify, you said ex-fiance'. Is this just a general reference to the wedding been cancelled or are the two of you actually broken up?
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#2

Postby Anniedream » Sat Jan 28, 2017 9:11 pm

Actually broken up. Just decided it can't be resolved and families are not willing to make up.
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#3

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Sun Jan 29, 2017 12:09 am

The wedding did not break you two apart. Families did not cause you and your fiancé to go your separate ways. Rather the events that took place simply revealed the underlying problems that existed in the relationship. The wedding, the families were a catalyst, not a cause. When things are going smooth, there is no requirement to resolve any problems that are beneath the surface.

Anyway, 7 years is a long time to be together. Ever hear of the 7 year itch? While you were technically not married, you were together for the statistically significant 7 year threshold.

"The seven-year itch can be analyzed quantitatively. Divorce rates show a trend in couples that, on average, divorce around seven years. Statistics show that there is a low risk of separation during the first months of marriage. After the "honeymoon" months, divorce rates start to increase. Most married couples experience a gradual decline in the quality of their marriage; in recent years around the fourth year of marriage. Around the seventh year, tensions rise to a point that couples either divorce or adapt to their partner.[3]

In samples taken from the National Center for Health Statistics, there proves to be an average median duration of marriage across time. In 1922 the median duration of marriage that ended in divorce was 6.6.[4] In 1974 the median duration was 7.5. In 1990 the median duration was 7.2. While these can fluctuate from year to year, the averages stay relatively close to the seven year mark.[5]"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_seven-year_itch
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#4

Postby Livetowin » Sun Jan 29, 2017 3:28 am

So very sorry that happen to the two of you. Yeah, weddings can be stressful enough even when they go as planned, so I can only imagine the weight of dealing with inter-family feuding. My hope is your split is more a break than a permanent situation. It definitely sounds like a break is needed for all involved, not only to settle frazzled nerves but to reassess the merits of why the two of you want to get married (which is not a bad thing).

My wife and I have been married 25 years, but we dated over six years before we got hitched. There were kids involved and all parties involved needed time to bond and make sure everyone was on board. By the time we were getting married, it was a big event for everyone but us. Not that it wasn't special. It was quite memorable and beautiful. But we KNEW we wanted this, as did the kids, and the marriage was just the last action needed to make it official for everyone else (if that makes sense). We had already put in the time and we had also had some upheavals (from her ex) that tested our resolve. But through it all we were always at our best when times were the hardest and that was the ultimate qualifier for us both. That instinct has proven to be true ever since.

So my instinct here tells me while it was VERY understandable that the marriage was called off, it was more disheartening to hear the two of you could not survive it as a couple. This I can tell you. Nothing should ever come between the two of you. NOTHING. If the families want to feud, so be it. But the conversation between you and him should be your own and not something outside voices have a role in (even family members). I feel quite sad for you, but this ultimately may serve as a blessing.

Marriage is no endless joy ride. It requires allot of sacrifice, understanding, and emotional maturity to know how to stay in it (for the right reasons) when you get frustrated with one another. THAT is the human condition, and not something wrong in the relationship. But it's been my experience that how you manage conflict is the greatest measure of how likely your relationship will last. And the conflict is not necessarily something the two of you create, but where the two of you simply find yourselves in the middle (like this situation).

How you got there is never as relevant as how the two of you walk out of it when it's over. So as much as there is plenty of blame to go around for the debacle involved in getting to that wedding day, I would definitely take a closer look at why the two of you gave up on each other when it was supposed to be about celebrating your bond. I hope the two of you can figure out what that was and examine if that is something that can be fixed.
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