What to do When Cold Feet Strike

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Usually, when you get the wedding day jitters, they are just that—jitters, nerves, stage fright. i.e. Not a huge deal. 

Everyone gets nervous before something big. Remembers taking the ACT? Or your public speaking final? This is the same thing, really. We’re not trying to make light of the situation, though. If you think it’s serious, that you may not be doing the right thing, see the last section of this post. But  if it’s really just nerves, here’s a pep talk:

Cold Feet Pep Talk

You can do this. This is not the end of the world. This is not the end of all your freedom. You are happy.

Groom and groomsmen in blue suits waiting for bride at the end of the aisle

“But I’ll only be with one woman for the rest of my life”

Yeah, so? 

What, you have a string of lingerie models lined up for you? Oh, you don’t? Didn’t think so. The life of the eternal bachelor is not a fulfilling one. Don’t believe us? Watch more rom-coms—particularly if they have Matthew McConaughey in them. 

You have found a wonderful person who loves you, despite that mole on your butt and your weird fascination with K-Pop. Who wants to spend the rest of their life with you, despite the male pattern baldness that runs in your family. Isn’t that a person worth keeping around?

You already made the jump from boyfriend to fiance, you can do fiance to husband too. It’s really not that much different. You just get to do your taxes together.

“But I can do better / She’s not the one / I want to be with Scarlett Johansson”

Reread the above note and rethink this one before asking again. Because, no you can’t do better. Yes, she is the one, if the one even exists. If not, who cares? She’s cool usually, she loves you, and once this is all over she’ll be back to normal. And yes, you will always want what you can’t have. It’s just a part of life, shouldn’t mean ruining your future.

“Literally any other excuse.”

Invalid. Whatever whiny thing your thinking now, we promise it’s not worth it. Unless of course, it’s serious. Then we can discuss that, too.

Bride and groom in blue suit in front of arbor getting married

What to do when you’re just not feeling it

Sometimes months before the wedding you just get that sinking feeling. This may not be the right thing to do. Sometimes it can be cracked up to nerves, which is perfectly fine. You’ll get it over with and then live happily ever after. But sometimes it’s not. Here’s what we suggest when you think you may have to make the tough call:

Counseling

We would recommend this for anyone getting married, whether you’ve been together six years or six months. Counseling is the time that you can get with your partner and go over every detail of your relationship and your expectations for marriage. If you’re not on the same page about the big stuff, that could prove detrimental to your relationship. Plus, if you’re feeling unsure about the whole thing, this is your opportunity to talk through everything and get your worried out in the open.

We’ve written some more about this, if you need more on premarital counseling and things you should discuss before tying the knot.

Talk it through

Whether this is with your partner or just a close friend, it’s important that you air out your thoughts. Keeping everything bottled up will only result in a fallout later, but discussing your thoughts with someone else allows you to think them through better and get feedback. Our only suggestion would be if you’re talking to a friend, make sure they’re the kind that will really listen and offer sound advice and not immediately tell you to “dump their ass” because weddings and marriage are a “social construct” and true love “isn’t real.” 

If anything, let us be that friend: You love them; everything will be fine.

Groom in black tuxedo crying

Go with your gut

If counseling and talking it through haven’t made a difference, be honest with yourself and try to figure things out. We really don’t suggest leaving your partner at the altar (like, just do it, at this point), but if you decide well in advance that it’s better to cut ties, then that’s your choice and we won’t stop you (but in the instance that the non-refundable deposits have been paid, then yes, you owe her dad, or whomever, money). Of course, we are all for love prevailing, so if there is any amount of hope in your heart, then chalk your doubts up to nerves and go on with the show.

Whatever is causing you stress, there’s a good chance that when all of this is over, you’ll be happily married and able to go on with your life. Take a deep breath and a tequila shot; everything will be okay.

Featured image by First Loved Photo

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