June 24, 2016 marked 10 years that David and I have been together, and we decided to celebrate by eloping. We kept it a secret from nearly everyone, except those people we needed to make it happen. We’ve been getting a lot of questions about eloping, so here are some answers to the top 10 questions.
Weddings just aren’t our thing. Some women go to all their friends’ weddings and think, “When it’s my turn I’ll do this……I want my colors to be……Oooo, that’s such a good idea….” I have left every single wedding saying “That was so much fun, I’m so happy for them, I never want to do this.” It’s not that we don’t like other people’s weddings or are against marriage as an institution, we just didn’t want a wedding.
Why did you wait so long?
When you’re not into weddings, the motivation to get married is a little different. We never felt like we needed to be married to be committed to each other, but after 10 years we realized it was the right move in terms of the legal protections that commitment gets.
Was it spur of the moment?
No, we decided to do it the beginning of April, and knew we both wanted to do it on our 10th anniversary. We had all the details worked out in about 6 weeks, and then just waited for the day.
Was it stressful preparing?
Nope! It was so fun. I didn’t diet, I didn’t have to field opinions from people, I didn’t spend lots of money trying to be perfect that day. (I hoped for no zits and a good hair day, but that’s about it.) The things we needed to plan and buy we did surprisingly quickly once we decided to do it.
Was it cheap?
Yes, in all seriousness, I have spent more being a bridesmaid than I did being a bride. But I also don’t think that should be anybody’s motivation for eloping. If you want a wedding, and want people to be there, then figure out a budget and a way to work within that budget. It’s your event, and you can do (and can not do) whatever you want.
Did you avoid family drama?
Yes, because the only people there were my parents for our two witnesses, but I also don’t think this is a good reason to elope. If you have always dreamed of a wedding, don’t let other people ruin that for you and deny you something you’ve always wanted. Instead, try and deal with that drama as best you can. Here’s something I think a lot of brides forget: you don’t have to include anyone in your planning and you don’t have to tell anyone what you’re doing. Send out invitations, people will come if they want to be there, and the people who love you will be happy for you.
Was there crazy drama after?
Nope. We read a lot about eloping before we did it and had a plan in place. We had a list of people to call right away and a pile of stamped announcements that we dropped in the mailbox as soon as we did it. Also, people know us. We’ve been together 10 years, and most people knew a traditional wedding just wasn’t us. Wanting to elope doesn’t mean we dislike people and didn’t want them there, it just means we didn’t want a big wedding.
What about gifts?
We have been surprised by the generosity coming our way, but what we love most is that people are doing whatever they’re comfortable with. Yes, we’ve gotten cards, checks, and gifts, and also invitations to get together and toast with special friends. We really expected nothing, so every act of generosity has meant so much to us.
Do you regret not having more people there?
No. I genuinely was so relaxed, happy and in love that it was the perfect way to make our commitment to each other legal and binding. The smallness of the ceremony felt intimate, romantic and very us. I’m happy we had the foresight to hire a professional photographer (the amazing Brittanny Taylor) to capture the day so we have something to share with friends and family.
Are you keeping your last name?
Yup! Do I judge women who decide to change theirs? Nope! We all get to do whatever makes us happy.
Are you thinking of eloping or just want to feel validated in not wanting a traditional wedding? Let’s have coffee, message me, I’m happy to chat about it. For us, it was 100% the right choice, and we couldn’t be happier.