You may not realize it, but you’ve been thinking about your wedding for a very long time. From the first moment you were asked to be a flower girl or ring bearer, you’ve probably put some thought into how you’d like your wedding—and by extension, your relationship—to look. The thoughts came up while watching rom-coms as a teen, they came up as you scrolled through engagement announcements on Facebook, and they certainly came up the day you became a bride-to-be.
But now, after years of dreaming and many months of hardcore planning, your wedding is…well, over. The toasts were made, the dancing is done, the dress is put away, and you find yourself feeling strangely sad. Isn’t this supposed to be your happily ever after? This can’t be normal, right?
If you’re feeling sad in the wake of your wedding day, don’t worry—you’re not alone. What you’re feeling is called the “post-wedding blues.” It’s actually quite common, and there are ways to fight it.
What Are the Post-Wedding Blues?
According to psychologists, post-wedding blues are a period of sadness or disappointment following a couple’s wedding day. Many couples experience these feelings, though their reasons can be very different. For some, the excitement of planning and anticipating the wedding was a natural high, and every high must come with a low. For others, the wedding took precedence over other aspects of their life (like work or school), and now they’re facing a lot of stressful situations. And for others still, the post-nuptial life means saying goodbye to their dream of a wedding—something they’ve held onto for most of their life!
While the post-wedding blues are totally normal, they certainly aren’t fun. Thankfully, there are things you and your spouse can do to avoid this period of sadness and really enjoy yourselves as you begin your life as a married couple. Here are a few hints that will help you banish the post-wedding blues.
Take Breaks While Planning
There is no doubt that planning a wedding is a colossal endeavor. Between finding countless vendors, tasting cakes and catering menus, dressing the wedding party, and managing the guest list, it’s a wonder that couples get anything else done! For this reason, it’s pretty common for wedding planning to take a year or more—and it still has a tendency to take over the couples’ lives!
Once the wedding is over, this all-encompassing task is no longer present for the newlyweds…and that can leave an emotional vacuum for the blues to creep in. Avoid this situation by forcing yourself to step away from the wedding plans. If you need to, schedule one day a week where no one is allowed to talk about the wedding. This will keep you engaged in relationships and hobbies outside of the wedding, so you have something else to focus on after you say “I do.”
Create a Buffer Zone
Traditionally, a couple will hurry off to their honeymoon immediately following the wedding, leaving the next morning or sometimes that same night. While this whirlwind of excitement seems incredibly romantic and fun, it can actually leave you feeling pretty low by the time you get home. Your mind needs time to process that beautiful day you just experienced, and overloading it with another activity might just lead to a greater slump.
Instead of taking your honeymoon immediately, it might be best to wait a few weeks before your romantic getaway. Not only will this give you time to process your wedding (and settle into life as a married man or woman), but it will also give you something to look forward to in the coming weeks or months! This will help you ease out of the exciting wedding planning stage and into everyday life without too great an energy drop.
Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
Let me tell you a little story about my own experience with post-wedding blues: after my husband and I got married, I became incredibly listless and sad. For me, my depression came from my desire to have a child (you know, first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes…), even though I knew it made the most sense for us to wait another year. I had a hard time dealing with the fact that, even though we’d taken a big step in our relationship, we weren’t taking the next big step right away, and I started to become a little resentful of my wonderful, practical husband.
But instead of letting my sadness grow, I talked to my husband. He listened to my feelings and together we were able to figure out a way to make me feel better (in our case, refocusing on the goals we want to achieve before making our family bigger). Remember, your spouse is here for you “for better or for worse,” so don’t be afraid to be honest about your post-wedding blues. He or she will certainly be willing to help you overcome these feelings, whether you seek out a counselor or schedule a weekly date night.
So if you find yourself feeling upset that your wedding day has come and gone, don’t worry. This feeling is bound to pass with time, and there are plenty of things you can do to make you feel better in your happily ever after.