Weeks to a Wedding: The Groom Has Something to Say

Sophie’s been detailing the ups and downs of planning a wedding in weeks for, well, weeks now. Today her fiancé chimes in with his perspective.

By: John Wilwol

Sophie has covered quite a bit here, and, fortunately, we haven’t run into many snags. I don’t have horror stories or planning tips. But in hoping that this blog is making its way to a few guys, I’ve got something for the grooms.

Sophie outed me a few posts ago. It’s true—I’m fussy about clothes. I’m especially concerned with fit—I hate clothes that are too big. So, as you can well imagine, I’m daily offended by the sartorial horror show that is Capitol Hill. It seems that guys here find a suit that fits and then buy it two sizes larger. Do they expect to grow into it?

A few years ago, I received a beautiful Brooks Brothers tuxedo as a gift. I’ve lost a little weight since then, and it was important to me that the tux not look like I had borrowed it from my dad. The first tailor failed. And, yes, I guess I pouted a little. (Though, in truth, it was more of a manly tirade.) I insisted on finding another, which I did, and I’m confident they’ll get it right. With that sorted out, I started thinking about shoes.

I had a pair that was fine, but I was also considering an upgrade. After all, it’s my wedding day, too. But as I started to shop, I found that I wasn’t going to get anything substantially better than what I already had without spending a ton of money. Bummed out, I asked Sophie what she thought I should do. Without looking up from her iPhone, she said, “John, nobody’s going to notice your shoes.” She couldn’t be more right.

It’s tempting to go on about how appearances don’t really matter and love is all that counts. That’s a little obvious, isn’t it? So let’s skip it. But her comment signaled two other things for me.

First, guys, on your wedding day, there’ll be but one set of eyes on you—your bride’s. Everyone else in the house will be gazing at her. Your job as far as dress is concerned is to feel good and not distract from her beauty. Remember the Hippocratic oath here—do no harm. So don’t sweat the small stuff. The second thing is a little nebulous and weighty, so bear with me while I try to put it into words.

Appearances don’t matter to me in terms of status. There’s a dearth of designer labels in my closet. But I take pride in my appearance because I think that anything you choose to invest in is an expression of the kind of guy you are. And since your wife is the only family member you ever get to choose, your treatment of that relationship is the ultimate expression of the kind of guy you are. (Understand, I’m not saying that you choose your wife the way you pick out some item in a shop. She chooses you, too.)

Planning for your wedding is going to test your relationship a little. You’ll work together, learn the art of compromise, deal with money, and likely endure at least a hint of family/friend drama. In those little stressful moments, take care of your bride and forget the rest. Nothing will say more about the kind of guy you are than the look on her face as she walks down the aisle. Nobody is going to notice your shoes.

You can follow John and Sophie's story from the beginning here.

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