Pre Wedding Depression, Didn’t See This One Coming

Disclaimer: So yea, I’m going to talk about depression and I know that word can mean different things to different people and it can cause lots of very strong opinions, but I just want to recognize that everyone’s journey is unique to them and I only speak for myself. Cool.

Scotland April 2012

 

Throughout my year of wedding planning I was well aware of and well equipped to handle post wedding depression. I had read about it, heard first hand experiences about it, and had personally experienced the feeling of loss that can overtake one after something exciting ends (in my case, when I show I was performing in closed, it always left me a little sad). I was doing everything right to combat post wedding depression. I kept my friendships active, I planned for events post-wedding, and I reminded myself that there would be many exciting life events to look forward to with Mr. Sword.

Fortunately, I don’t feel any PWD (yay)! I loved our wedding day; I’m grateful it went so well and I’m happy to be married to the love of my life. But it turns out I was preparing for the wrong thing”¦

If you Google “Pre Wedding Depression” you can find articles that talk about it. They mostly go on about brides being so stressed out planning their wedding that they turn “blue.” This is not what I felt. I can handle stress. I can handle my anxiety (poorly, but I can), and I can handle being “blue.” What I felt in the last few months of planning was painful.

It probably wasn’t evident from my blogging and it didn’t affect my job as a nanny, but in my downtime I was apathetic, lonely, pessimistic, melancholy, and just plain sad. My Mom says when we have many changes in our lives our chemical balances can get off, and whether that’s true or not, that’s what I felt. Mr. Sword was traveling every week for work and I had way too much time to be alone, and to think. I was agonizing about all the upcoming changes in our careers, our location, and our relationship. I was feeling overwhelmed at the responsibilities of being someone’s wife, as I suddenly thought I wouldn’t be enough. And I was scared of failing, at well, everything.

So of course I picked fights with Mr. Sword. I had lots of emotional breakdowns on the phone to Mom, Sister, and Best Friends. I spent a few Saturdays in bed too depressed to move.

Sure, there were a few factors that helped contribute to my low mental state, the holidays were over, the winter dreariness was just beginning, and the thought of hosting the biggest event of our life seemed so overwhelming that everything else in life looked equally as daunting. Whatever the trigger, I knew I was not feeling like myself. I knew something was off.

At first it became apparent that I was a wreck every other weekend and so I began dreading every other weekend. I thought about seeing someone outside of my family to talk about things with, but eventually we decided to go the holistic route and stocked up on herbal pills and extracts to help aid me in positive thinking and lower my anxiety. These things worked”¦slightly? Or, perhaps they were a mental trick. Either way, I was working on feeling better and I was glad.

Soon enough, both January and February passed and by March I was starting to feel like myself again. I was still nervous for the big day (hello, control freak) and I was still prone to emotional breakdowns (but what bride isn’t?), but I was happy and positive. It was a relief to be excited for the future again instead of dreaming up worst case scenarios.

Looking back from the other side I feel blessed to have had so many amazing people in my life that listened to me when I needed that, or made me laugh when I needed that, or acted excited about the wedding when I needed that. Mostly I’m grateful for having a partner who will discuss anything with me no matter how crazy I sound, who I can trust with my worst and most personal fears, and who loves me even when I’m not feeling 100% like myself.

dc-trip-oct-2012-040

Muah! love you baby!

(all photos personal)

Treading carefully here, does anyone else want to share their pre or post wedding depression experiences? How did you get past the low moments?

BLOGGER

Mrs. Sword

Location:
Chicago
Wedding Date:
March 2013
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comments

  1. Member
    Mrs. Sword 1019 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:55 am

    @Caty: Those last few weeks are the hardest! Try to focus on your partner and your love for each other and you’ll make it, and the wedding will be beautiful! It feels AMAZING once you’re married on the other side. :)

    however, if you have serious concerns, go speak to a therapist, nothing wrong in asking for help when navigating a new part of life!

  2. Guest
    Miss Green, Guest @ 10:41 am

    Wow, this sounds remarkably familiar. It makes me feel so much better knowing that I am not alone! I have a little less than a month to go and am truly marrying the man of my dreams, but I feel like I spend a lot of my time of late choking back tears. Mostly I think it has to do with my best friend; she and I have been very close for a long time, and now I think she feels that she needs to step back and push me away both for her own protection and for me to learn to go first to my husband. But it hurts so much to feel her put up a wall between us when for so long she’s held such a big part of my heart! Between that and all the silly petty drama and the ridiculous amounts of work and stress, I have become increasingly sad and depressed. I feel like I need to have a huge cry and just can’t get it out, and instead it wells up inside to the point of physical pain and nausea. Thank you for being brave enough to admit (and thereby making me feel brave enough to admit) that even though your dreams are coming true, it’s not inappropriate or wrong to still feel sad about some of the changes that come with this big event.

  3. Guest
    Pavs, Guest @ 9:12 am

    Thank you for posting this.. feels better after reading. My wedding is fixed and I am feeling as to when will i break this 5 yr relationship with my fiance. Then I just thought if this feeling was only with me or does it even happen to others. Though I am an Indian, this has not much to do with the nationality I feel. A Bride is a Bride and a Wedding also is the same anywhere. :)

  4. Guest
    Tilly, Guest @ 3:17 am

    I had a very similar experience although I’m now feeling that mine is more sinister. About 4 weeks to go before my wedding and I spiralled into this sort of phased out wreck. I wasn’t eating, I was drinking every night but on my own and I wouldn’t sit anywhere other than the bench in my garden with my phone to play sad songs on. The number of times I cried out there I can’t remember. A series of dress fittings led to a huge row with my mother, I’d stopped eating and my weight was plummeting meaning 3 alterations, one the night before the big day. Mum wanted to talk about what was wrong, I wanted to bolt, I didn’t want to think or talk about it, not to anyone. Worried friends text and called to ask but I just fobbed them off with ‘I’m just tired’. It wasn’t until a week before the wedding and I was invited to a friends barbeque. My fiance stayed home. I had a lovely evening, although I didn’t eat and drank a fair amount of booze. I found someone to talk to in a very unlikely place. An acquaintance who is a very close friend of a friends brother. He just stopped, looked at me and said, so sincerely, ‘what’s wrong?’ It was around 4am, we were on our own apart from a friend who was too drunk to know he wasn’t fast asleep in his own bed. So it all came out, I realised I was afraid of ‘this being it’ and twinned with my job issues I felt ‘trapped’. He was amazing and he spent 2 hours ‘talking me down’ from the edge, I was ready to call it all off but he made me see that everything would be ok, or so I thought. So we walked around our friends house looking for a couple of spare beds to crash in, it dawned on us that there was only one- a double and we agreed that it would be ok to top and tail, I got in a sleeping bag and he put talk radio on and we drifted off to sleep. The following day he text, asking if I wanted to join him and a few others for BBQ part 2, I’d had such fun the night before I agreed. When it came to bed time for me a few others were up, I excused myself and headed for the same bed as the previous night. About an hour later he came in and asked if he could bunk with me again, I said fine, we were friends right? Nothing sinister here. So he hopped in, asked how I was doing and then gave me a hug. I fell asleep but I was aware of some shuffling around on both parts, we had moved to much more of a snuggling position, I ended up sleeping in the crook of his arm but facing away from him. At some point during the night I woke up to him kissing my neck, and I loved it, he really turned me on, which is awful and it makes me a terrible person. I didn’t resist him at all, I turned to face him and we came millimetres from kissing but then he stopped and said no. I agreed with him that this was a terrible thing and we didn’t talk about it after that. The wedding rolled around and up until an hour before the ceremony I was still feeling a bit wobbly about it all. But when I got in my dress and left the house with my dad it all felt so real and so right, I’ve been with hubby for 8 years, we’re best mates with a great sex life, he is so sweet and caring, he grinds my gears some days but who doesn’t right?! The wedding was incredible, such a fantastic day, we couldn’t have planned it better. The wedding night was a party planned back at our house, we didn’t want the night to end so our closest mates came back with the leftover wine and cake. Hubby was a mess, the boys had made him ‘drink the bar list’. As I was changing out of my dress I heard a clattering noise from the bathroom, hubby had thrown up in the bed and now he’s trying to shower himself with the duvet on. Lol! I spent some time living up to my wifely duties and cleaned him up before putting him back in bed with fresh sheets and pj’s. he was out for the count, I returned downstairs to join the party. Our house is renowned for kitchen parties so it was in full swing, everyone dancing around and singing their hearts out. I popped into the back garden to sit on my bench, have a cigarette and take it all in. It wasn’t long before he joined me, he asked if I was happy and quickly followed it up with ‘you looked very happy today’ I said yes, I did feel very different about the whole thing, the wedding had reassured me. He smiled and I smiled back, we sat silently finishing our cigarettes, a content silence, not an awkward one. We returned to the party and that was it. We jetted off on our honeymoon the following day and the 2 weeks away from it all let me clear my head. On our return we threw another party, this time for hubby’s birthday. It was raucous to say the least, at some point in the evening hubby succumbed to the booze and passed out on the put up bed downstairs, no amount of shaking him would wake him up so I left him there. A small group of closest mates asked if they could crash in our bed, it is massive so I agreed, 3 girls and one lad, no problem. Then he came upstairs, no one else thought anything of it, but he got in next to me and pulled me in to sleep practically cheek to cheek. I felt so comfortable and convinced myself that its fine because my girls were there with me to. Even when hubby came in at around lunchtime no one batted an eyelid, to him there was just a heap of my mates crashed out, arms and legs everywhere. Since then we have regularly ended up in a similar position, we only snuggle up and sleep but there have been several celebrations since the wedding that we have had the opportunity to bed down together, I’m not saying we actively seek it out but it does happen. The latest was last night, he had a work party and invited my husband and I along. We had lovely evening, hubby had to leave at around 10 for work in the morning. I stayed as I had had far too much to drink and a small group wanted to move onto a club. We had a great time, his work friends were welcoming and he looked out for me, even nearly got in a fight because some guy touched my hair. It got to about 5am and we were ready to come home, he was staying at ours because he doesn’t live nearby. As soon as we got into the taxi he pulled me close to him and kissed my forehead, he put his arms around me and I pretty much slept on his chest all the way home. When we got outside of my house he stopped me, he grabbed both of my hands and said that we are just friends and that’s all we can be…that’s cool, I know that! So we let ourselves into the house, it was so late that hubby was due to get up for work, we stumbled into the living room and flopped on the sofa, now this is where I have complete memory loss. Somehow, after falling asleep we got close to each other and things got a little heated, I remember waking up after falling from the sofa, he was on top of me and we were kissing and it was amazing. I don’t remember it starting or finishing but I woke up in my own bed later on- on my own. I didn’t know what had happened and I lay there trying to piece it together in my head, I heard him coming up the stairs, he came into my room and laughed at me for not really making it to bed…I was fully clothed and lying the wrong way on top of the duvet, he came and sat down with me and I really wanted to say something but I couldn’t, yet again we ended up snuggling and sleeping all day pretty much. I realised that he makes me feel safe. We woke up at about 3pm, and had a very prolonged awkward silence because things had changed, we had actually done something, we weren’t innocent any more. I started the conversation. ‘I suppose we need to talk about the thing that were refusing to talk about?’….’siiiiiighhhh…yeah I think we do’ was his reply, then silence again. Cue the start of a very broken and difficult conversation where we agree its wrong, try to talk ourselves into thinking its ok and its not an affair, justify it because he is lonely and not actually agree to any solution. So he left shortly afterwards and I now feel like I am grieving for a relationship, even though we never had one. He regularly stays at our house but I think he will avoid us from now on, it makes me really sad, really really sad. I enjoy his company so much. I miss him already and he’s not really been ‘away’ as such. As for the marriage, the bare bones of it are great, we work, we always did work, I love him with everything that I am. We fight and we fix it, he works too much, and I get over it, he is anti social, I am a bit of a socialite- which is where I stumble I suppose because I get to see ‘him’ on my own. Just to be clear that I have never even looked at another guy this way before, I had been cheated on before and vowed never to put anyone through that. I have an amazing husband, a beautiful house and him…I don’t know what I’m doing or what I want.

  5. Guest
    Meri, Guest @ 4:29 pm

    Thank you all for coming out about this. So nice to see I am not alone. I am a little over two months out and the depression keeps getting worse. I feel further away from my fiance than ever and I keep getting the urge to cancel and not have anyone waste so much money on flights and hotels and I don’t know if it’s cold feet or depression or what but I am feeling wedding stir crazy stress.

  6. Guest
    Mary Downs, Guest @ 5:39 am

    I am 7 weeks off getting married and feel so depressed. My fiance doesn’t really do emotions very well so doesn’t understand, in fact he makes it worse by getting angry about it. He we hadn’t sent the invites out I would be tempted to cancel the wedding, that’s how bad it is, I want to run away but I can’t for practical reasons. Last week we were so loved up, now I feel so miserable and unloved. How do I make him get it?

  7. Guest
    Amanda, Guest @ 6:37 am

    Thank you!!! Today is my wedding day! I had a good cry in my hotel room alone last night, I’ve felt like a crazy person the past few months. Crying out of control thinking the worst thoughts,my chest hurt like when you loose someone close to you, almost like a broken heart. I do hope this ends after my I do. I have an amazing man that loves me just the way I am. I have the best family, ton of friends but my future hubby is my best he calms me down. I guess I just wish I had more time to loose weight and not feel like I should be babysat by Nurse Ratched. I think I’m mad too that everyone keeps saying you are going to be such a beautiful bride and this will be the best day of your life. I doubt it will the whole day is about making everyone else happy, while they ask if they can do anything for you. I’m sounding so negative, but I would rather complain and whine on here then to show anyone I’m not doing well. Thank you for the post and for letting me ramble! Six more hours!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. Member
    sargz123 12 posts, Newbee @ 1:53 pm

    what a relief to see a thread like this!!! And that others feel the same. im 3 months to go till the day and I feel like calling it off and eloping.

    Between bridal party rumbles, step dads and real dad problems, MOB being paranoid, MOH flaked out for the last 9 months I feel lost in the sauce.

    Definitely planning a wedding and counting on people is not what its cracked up to be. I find you get lost in trying to please everyone else and you try your hardest to make other happy but you cant in the end please everyone.

    I have been kicking myself in the butt for placing expectations of what a bridal party is and what that means and ive been thoroughly let down not only by one of my sisters but my moh as well. Its very interesting because im sure when the time comes around for others to tie the knot they will see what it is like and I hope their family and others support them.

    I find with all the negative drama it begins to make you so sad that you question to point of the day and then thoughts lead into the whole idea of marriage and your relationship with that person. I love my fiancée to death but even that doesn’t keep those thoughts out of your head when you begin to get down and out. At the end of the day it doesn’t seem worth all the problems and hidden jealousies and drama when all I want to do is marry the man I love!

    Im so glad he has been there for me and really been that rock the entire time throughout this process where others have failed at it.

    I guess to know that lots of brides deal with pre wedding blues is something to consider and that we are not alone. Planning a wedding and being a bride is a toughy!

    Eloping keeps looks better every day!!!! LOL

    Keep buzzing lil bees!!! <3

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