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He Said: Pre-Wedding Confessions – Are you married yet?

Posted By Vinh Chung
~ Guest Blogger

Gone are the customs of our parents that required a wedding ceremony before moving in together. My fiancé and I are among the growing demographics of couples living together before saying our vows. We kind of did things out of order… opened a joint account, bought a house together…no kids yet.

This would be unheard of for our parents’ generation. It would have involved running away and starting a new life elsewhere. Had the news broke, they would have been written out of the will and disowned, assuming they were successful at dodging bullets.

Even for our generation, being financially joined before marriage sounds like a risky proposition to undertake, but we have been together for over nine years. In that vein, we knew we would have another 65 years together and decided to prolong the formalities for the advancement of our careers as well as having the appropriate funds and contacts to execute our dream wedding. Mid 2008, we concluded that 2009 will be the year to end the question of, “Are you married yet?” After all I proposed to her in 2005. You know it’s time to get married when most of your friends are on their fourth child. Gee-whiz! How the heck will we catch up?

I’ve always envisioned having a cruise ship wedding. I arrived at this conclusion from all the shortcomings of a typical western wedding. You spend a whole year (ideally) planning for an event that transpires over a single day. In the span of 8-10 hours you are rushed from one location to the next, from pictures to vows to the reception. Many of my friends said they were too stressed out and exhausted to enjoy their wedding. We often joke that it’s supposed to be this way to deter us from doing it again. Having a science and engineering mind, I deducted that if you spread these activities over a longer period of time, you should be able to maximize the depth of conversation from “Congratulations, we wish you well” to actually hanging out with your guests.

On a cruise ship, everything is taken care for you; all the great food you can stuff in your belly, plenty of activities and entertainment and exploration at the ports. Blanket a wedding over a 7-day cruise, everyone can take their time to bond, enjoy themselves, and partake in the festivities. Unfortunately, like many principles and theories in science that are simplified to reflect an absolute truth, I soon learned my narrow understanding of a cruise wedding is far removed from multitude of considerations existing in our complex lives. I had to also accept the fact that as much as I want to call the shots, the executive team are the ladies of the family; my fiancé and moms. I still participate in debates to exert what little weight I can muster. We have determined there will be three parts to our wedding to accommodate the three couples (us and our parents).

  • Vietnamese tea ceremony and reception
  • Cruise Wedding in the Mexican Riviera
  • American “Party” Reception
Please join my fiancé and me, in our guffaws as we share with you our faux pas. We will have helpful tips and take-aways to accomplish this ambitious undertaking. Just in case you too need to cram, we will share with you our experience. Because blogging is a two way street, we will also solicit your help to address our predicaments as these events unfold.