Beautiful Wedding, Now What about the Marriage?

BY: - 30 Jun '10 | Relationships

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by Tiya Cunningham-Sumter

Experiencing two weddings this month has not only brought a smile to my heart, it also served as a reminder that love is still very much in the air. Attending one of the weddings as a guest was wonderful, but being a coordinator for the other was more than a notion. After being married for almost 12 years, I had almost forgotten about the stressfulness that goes into planning and coordinating such an amazing event. There are so many details that are critical to having a successful wedding. We put tons of energy into making sure our guests not only enjoy the wedding, but are also impressed by it. The bride’s gown, bridesmaid’s dresses, flowers and wedding favors are all things the guests might be talking about afterward, so it is a must that they are on point. We normally get stressed by all of these details because our wedding is a reflection of us and we want it to be perfect. Well, our marriage is a reflection of us and if we use the same energy, time and attention to detail, our union will be just as successful as our wedding.

Those we choose to stand up for us in the wedding party, are usually the people that have been the most supportive in our lives.  In our marriage, if we’re having trouble in our home, first we work it out ourselves and if we must, only confide in those same few that have already been supportive.

As we google, research and ask event experts about ideas and tips on planning a wedding, when necessary, let’s ask those in healthy relationships and couple’s experts about some ideas they have on making a marriage work.

All of the guest that witnessed our exchanging of vows, the ones who made toasts and expressed how happy they were for us, should continue to love, encourage and remind us of our vows. If we ever stop trying, they should hold us accountable.

And the scriptures that were read during our ceremony, if used on a daily basis, can be a great reminder of the promises we made before GOD. Having a great wedding that people will be talking about is great, but having a healthy marriage that others admire is even better.

BMWK, are you still giving your marriage the same energy and attention you put into your wedding?

By Tiya Cunningham-Sumter, a Certified Life & Relationship Coach, Founder of Life Editing, creator of The Black Wives’ Club and an Administrator of Still Dating My Spouse. Tiya resides in Chicago with her husband and two children.


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  • TheMrs

    This is something that I have listened to my parents talk about most of my childhood and all of my adulthood. When I was an early teen I was in awe of the beautiful weddings dresses and the detail of the cakes, venues, etc. and had my own wedding in my mind (I had cut out pictures many years earlier planning my own) and my mother would remind me not to spend so much time dreaming about the perfect wedding that I need to dream about the perfect married life. As I aged, she would tell me about all the countless friends and families that had these super, over the top weddings who were no longer together…many lasting barely 5 yrs, while they had a simple wedding in my maternal grandparent's home surrounded by only a few close friends, family, and church members…they are going strong nearly 40 yrs later.
    In my own life now, I read the marriage vows regularly and evaluate myself on how well I am doing. I've always done good on evaluations and this is not something I am willing to fail at.

    • Tiya

      The Mrs, I love that reading the marriage vows regulary. That way they are always fresh in your mind. Congrats to your parents on 40 years, that is awesome and inspiring.

  • TER

    Love the article…you always write about such timely marriage topics. Kudos Tiya!

    Almost embarrassed to say…we didn't put that much energy in our wedding….so I can't say that we put more into the wedding than the marriage. We can definitely do more because I honestly don't think that we put enough energy into our marriage.

    • Tiya

      Thanks TER! We all can do more as far as putting that energy into our marriages. It is never too late 😉

  • values

    This is such a necessary reminder…particularly when planning the wedding. Prior to getting engaged I always thought I would have a simple wedding. Then, with both of us together the wedding grew to in invite list of 300+. As you can imagine, other stressors also compiled. We ultimately got away from the point and began to focus more on the party. As a result, we focused less on our relationship and when true challenges presented, we were not prepared to handle them.
    Ultimately, he and I decided not to marry. I see now that the decision was for the best. As a result of that experience I have re-centered myself on my values and am better able to discuss/evaluate values with my current partner.
    Thanks for the post…I hope your message comes back to me in planning the next wedding (which my current partner and I already agree will be simple! :)

    • Tiya

      Thanks Values. We have to be prepared to handle all those challenges that may come our way, so it is very important that we have those discussions and plan for the success of our marriages.

  • Anna

    After my husband and I went to “The Justice Of The Peace” to get married we got many invitations to attend numerous weddings within our few months of marriage(and we attended). It really does make you want to have a wedding of your own. My husband and I witnessed the most beautiful weddings. Doves, brides maids, grooms men, beautiful couples, great food and dee jays. Only one couples wedding that we went to survived. The rest are divorced, and most were over in the first yr. Some took longer but were not together waiting a divorce (court) date. My husband and I have attended a few weddings since our 13 yrs. of marriage, and why does marriage not last? Is it debt of having a over priced wedding, falling in love with the idea of marriage, blended family, bad kids, age?

  • Tiya

    Anna, that is truly unfortunate that those marriages ended in divorce. We have to shift our focus, also it just seems to easy to end a marriage than it does to fight for it.

  • MsKaos

    More!  I wanted to run off to the JoP to get married, so I had no real desire to plan or have an elaborate wedding day…throughout the planning I was looking forward to the day after the wedding when we could get on with the rest of our lives.  My friends affectionately called me “the anti-bride”.  LOL  Our  day turned out wonderfully thanks to hiring a planner to coordinate our destination wedding — someone to do the heavy lifting after choosing colors, attendants, date, and location.  I think this attitude helped me not take it all too seriously — the wedding planning process, that is.  Because  it was in another country, there were many things we had to compromise on that weren’t available as they would be in the US.  For me, the only requirements for my wedding day was my then fiance and an officiant!  Our day is still something many of our guests tell us was one of the best weddings they’ve ever attended; that was a bonus, not a requirement!  What my husband and I talked about incessantly throughout our year long engagement was planning our life together after the wedding day – where’d we’d like to make a home, how we were going to merge finances and 2 homes, when we wanted to have babies, etc etc etc.    In the 2.5 years since our wedding, every day hasn’t been filled with the same romance of our wedding day, but there’s no hired hand to help with the heavy lifting.  My husband & I do ALL the work on our marriage every single day to make sure it’s as successful as that day, actually more so — this is the rest of our lives we’re talking about here!  Unfortunately, some of the most elaborate, lavish weddings I’ve attended have ended in the nastiest, ugliest divorces which saddens me.  As Tiya said above, we must change our focus on that one day!