6 Reasons to Put off a Wedding

A calendar with the words "wedding" written on a date and surrounded by flowers.

Once you’ve decided on a wedding date, or just on the general idea of getting married, it can be tempting to get the ball rolling right away. But even once a few of the decisions have been made, there may still be a few reasons for having the wedding later, rather than sooner. Take the following reasons into consideration and keep your mind open about putting the wedding off. It isn’t an end, but a commitment to the right beginning.

1. He’s Less Engaged Than You’d Expect

The engagement itself can often be so romantic and beautiful that you can barely see through the rose-colored glasses. But be honest with yourself; was someone or something pressuring your groom-to-be into engagement? Pay attention to how he participates (or doesn’t participate) in the preparations for the wedding. If he’s disengaged, come to him at a time when he’s not stressed or tired and try to get some answers. Give him the freedom to say what’s really on his mind and offer him the chance to put the wedding off if that will elevate his spirits. But don’t just extend this courtesy to him; if you find yourself dreading aspects of the wedding or marriage, use your partner as a sounding board and see if you are truly ready for the wedding. We have the period of engagement for a reason because it allows us to really soul-search. Take advantage of as much time as you need.

2. One of You Is Going Through Tragedy or Hardship

A young upset woman looking out a window as her fiance comforts her.

Life doesn’t stop throwing hard things at us during our engagement to a wonderful person. If you go through a financial loss, the death of a friend or family member, or a traumatic world event, you usually need a substantial amount of time to process through your emotions. It can be very difficult to focus on centerpieces and catering menus when you really just need to be with those you love and focus on them (or yourself). If either you or your partner goes through a tragedy during the engagement, look into what it would mean to postpone the wedding. Sometimes it doesn’t make sense, but being willing to consider it will give some much-needed breathing room to you both.

3. The Finances Look Iffy for a Quick Engagement

Many people rush to get married quickly more out of excitement than out of any real urgency. Unfortunately, a wedding quickly compresses the timeline for related bills and not everyone is in a financial position to immediately put down deposits on a variety of wedding vendors. Take an honest look at your finances and make the decision together about possibly pushing back the date so you can really afford the wedding you want. Sometimes the solution is a loan or family help, but if it will decrease your stress give yourself more time to make your wedding-related purchases with a longer engagement. You’ll enjoy them better when you aren’t worried about how to pay for them!

4. Premarital Counseling Reveals Conflict

A young engaged man and woman at a premarital counseling session.

One of the smartest moves you can make during engagement is finding a trusted minister or psychologist who can help you with some premarital counseling. The main benefit is that these professionals will guide you through serious conversations about your future life together, including conversations that might not come up organically in your daily life. If you discover that you have major conflict over careers, living locations, children, or another big topic, give yourselves some time to think the marriage through. Pushing for a quick wedding when you’ve uncovered a conflict is not going to end the problem—it will simply mean you will already be married when you have to address it. Give your marriage a greater chance of success by handling disagreements now.

5. Wedding Planning Is Straining Your Relationship

Sometimes, the demands of the wedding process are simply the problem! If you are overly frustrated with one another or with other people involved in the wedding planning, then it might be worthwhile to push the date back a bit to relieve some of the stress. Recognize that your relationship is what matters the most and try to protect it however you can.

6. The Location, Time, or Circumstances Aren’t Ideal for Your Plans

Sometimes in the wedding planning process, something just comes up that can ruin your plans. This may be an important family member telling you they aren’t available on that date, or a vendor you really wanted hiking up their prices. Rather than scrambling to host the exact same wedding under non-ideal circumstances, consider what it would mean to postpone the event. Sometimes the expense is prohibitive, but often there are real advantages to rescheduling the wedding.

Certainly, plenty of couples have encountered these circumstances during their engagement and wedding planning process and pressed forward with wonderful results. However, don’t ignore the option of putting the wedding off. It’s not a sign that the wedding won’t happen. It’s simply a chance to regroup and focus on what matters so that your wedding day will be worry-free and rock-solid.

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