Author Topic: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?  (Read 7393 times)

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White Lotus

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #30 on: January 21, 2014, 11:30:35 AM »
In so many countries, the "registry office" part is the legal wedding, and the religious service, if any, is just that -- a spiritual and emotional joining.  What is the "wedding?"  I think that is up to the couple.  The Temple service is what counted for us, not the rather screwball comedy aspects of getting the paperwork done -- several weeks after our Temple wedding.  Maybe the private and personal comittment of the parties is enough for them.  Maybe the registry office is what counts.   Just because in the US legal weddings can take place in churches/temples officiated by religious leaders does not make that the gold standard.  When the party is seems to me most relevant to the guests.

Eeep!

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #31 on: January 21, 2014, 12:20:25 PM »

However, we don't impose our views on anyone else. If a couple decides that those papers are emotionally important and want to celebrate, great! If a different couple feels the religious side is more important, I will happily sit through a service and toast them. To other couples, the paperwork represents a struggle for equality and I will happily cheer them on. If it was necessary to go through the paperwork because of military, health, financial or whatever reason, I will celebrate when the couple tells me it is the right time for them.

I only get peeved when a couple wants me to celebrate every single little thing as though it was a milestone. Sorry, if you are celebrating "the day we file our paperwork", then you are celebrating inch marks, not milestone, and that becomes all about you, not about an important event.

Thank you for saying this better than I could. This is totally where I fall!
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Tea Drinker

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #32 on: January 21, 2014, 02:17:18 PM »
I just really object to folks turning their noses up and saying "that's not a wedding, that's <insert 'approved' name here>". If people in love want to celebrate, then it's really nobody else's business what they call that celebration or what the legal status of that celebration is. Turn up and celebrate, or don't.


I am also in the camp of letting the couple define what/when their wedding, is within reason (i.e. not having multiple big white weddings, etc.). That said, I've seen compelling arguments from same sex couples who are denied the right to legally marry, that couples who enjoy the benefits of marriage (i.e. being legally wed, health insurance, tax breaks, etc.) but don't consider themselves married until they have a big party, are sort of getting the whole thing backwards. For couples who may have celebrated their relationship but not been able to enjoy legal benefits, writing off those much desired legal benefits as "just paperwork" can be seen as minimizing the struggle for marriage equality.

Again that's not a lens through which I see this particular situation, or quickie marriages before deployments, etc. but I do think that not all disagreement on the issue stems from people turning their noses up over outdated etiquette.

Well, coming at it from a same-sex standpoint, I'd say it's even MORE important to defend your right to decide what your 'wedding' is. As I've spoken about in another thread, although I am married (civil partnership) I won't enjoy the full benefits of equal marriage for about another year. That will be a hugely important thing to me, and there's nothing that makes my blood boil more than anti-equal marriage folks saying "It's just some paperwork, why do you care?"

I sort of think that the idea that my wedding, my marriage, is what I (and my other half) want it to be is very much tied into that. As long as I have the same rights and freedoms as anybody else, let me define for myself what it means to be married, and what a wedding is. /soapbox

If they think it's "just paperwork," why do they care how you address it? That's separate from "if it's just paperwork, why are people trying to stop us from having it?" A specific couple (same- or mixed-sex) can decide they don't want the paperwork, or that it's legally useful but that the big thing is getting married in front of their friends and family, or a religious ceremony: but dismissing it for other people is not cool. Dismissing it only for certain other people--telling a same-sex couple they shouldn't care about not being able to have the legal marriage, or not being allowed to call it that, while encouraging mixed-sex couples to get legally married--is extremely uncool, because it stops being "people shouldn't care" and starts being "I care that you not get this."
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Tea Drinker

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #33 on: January 21, 2014, 02:20:22 PM »
Oh, and to go back to LadyL's original question: there's no etiquette rule against sending a wedding gift significantly before the wedding. So if you've found what you think is the perfect gift, you can send it now with a note saying something like "Congratulations on your marriage." Or you can wait, if you get the feeling they would prefer that. The one practical argument for waiting would be if you want to look at their registry first.

I'd probably go with a wedding gift, sent any time in the next 8 or 9 months, and if I went to the housewarming bring a plant, box of chocolate, interesting vinegar, or some other relatively small useful-in-the-home thing unless they made it clear that they didn't want housewarming gifts.
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Library Dragon

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #34 on: January 21, 2014, 03:26:40 PM »
Can I just ask for those who have a legal wedding followed some days, weeks or months later by the church ceremony which they consider their "real" wedding, do you cohabit in the interim and, if so, do you regard this as "sinful"?

Also, do you accept the social and financial benefits of being married during that time?

DS2 & DIL didn't live together during the intervening week. I'm never, ever going to ask about their s3x life so I won't know.

As for other couples, it's really not my business.

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GlitterIsMyDrug

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #35 on: January 21, 2014, 03:57:48 PM »
Since they didn't make a big hoorah about their legal ceramony, I'd hold off on a gift to celebrate their union until the wedding. But I might get them a small housewarming gift because hey they did get a new home together and that doesn't directly have anything to do with the wedding.

see, that doesnt make sense to me. their real wedding was the legal one not the church one.  thats just a celebration after the fact.

i sometimes feel that too much emphasis is put on the "big white wedding" day  and people are forgetting that the marriage not the day is the point of it all.

So, here's my take on this. And this is coming from a woman marrying another woman in state that has an actual law in our state constitution about how we can't do that legally. In order for us to get any kind of federal marriage benefits, we must present a marriage license from one of the states that recognizes gay marriage. So we had to decide what we wanted to do, we could have done a detestation wedding and it would've have even been far from home. But we decided we want our wedding here. In the place we've made our home. So our wedding day, with our friends and family present, will be our wedding day. That is the day we make a promise in front of the most important people to us to stick it out with one another come hell or high water.

At some point we'll be taking a trip to the state beside us to get the legal bit done. Haven't decided when exactly yet, but we will be doing it. This is paperwork. Nothing more, nothing less. This isn't our wedding day. This is just, the day we get Uncle Sam what he needs so we can get the same benefits as all the other married people. We just have to do it differently.

Coming from that place, I can see them as two separate things. The ceremony, and the paperwork. Now, for most straight couples (and couples living in places that recognize same sex marriage), this occurs on the same day. You get hitched, you sign the paperwork all in one day (there's even often a picture of the paperwork signing!), but sometimes they have to happen on different days. Most people see the ceremony as the important part. The paperwork is just the legal stuff. It's not about it being a big white wedding, it's about making the promise in front of people you care about who care about you.

Now if we're talking about people who keep having wedding after wedding, that's a problem. Just throw a party for yourself already.

Editeer

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #36 on: January 21, 2014, 04:08:35 PM »

 we could have done a detestation wedding


Trying to imagine the decorations . . .

GlitterIsMyDrug

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #37 on: January 21, 2014, 04:10:45 PM »

 we could have done a detestation wedding


Trying to imagine the decorations . . .

Just big giant signs that say "We don't like you or each other!", no glasses + auto correct= very odd wedding.

Mikayla

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #38 on: January 21, 2014, 07:53:24 PM »
I don't have a problem with people wanting a celebration after the fact, but my issue is calling it a wedding.  In the title, LadyL put it in quotes, and I think there's a reason for that.

Obviously, I'm just referring to the US and also the absence of any other unique factors like same sex marriages.  But the term wedding has a definition, and it doesn't refer to a married couple re-stating their vows in a church.  It refers to a ceremony where a couple becomes husband and wife.  That just can't happen twice.

I've never been to one of these, but it seems many of the "trappings" or traditions would be inappropriate.  If a woman is already married, who walks her down the aisle?  Would she have bridesmaids?  I'd think not, because she's not a bride.  What about the legal aspect of a church wedding, where the minister says "by the power vested in me by the state, I now pronounce..."?  The state has already pronounced it.

Also, while I agree with people saying it's nobody's business, that doesn't mean there isn't fallout.  If someone elopes or has a courthouse wedding, and now they want a "real" wedding, this basically says the moment they became husband and wife wasn't good enough.  So I can see where others who eloped and thought their ceremony was enough feel slightly dissed by that.  It implies it isn't real unless there's a BWW.

Anyway, I'd send the gift early as a congrats for getting married.

Teenyweeny

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #39 on: January 21, 2014, 08:13:25 PM »
Nope, they're saying that the moment they became married wasn't the moment that they signed some paperwork. That's the disconnect here.



mime

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #40 on: January 21, 2014, 08:32:25 PM »
Since they didn't make a big hoorah about their legal ceramony, I'd hold off on a gift to celebrate their union until the wedding. But I might get them a small housewarming gift because hey they did get a new home together and that doesn't directly have anything to do with the wedding.

see, that doesnt make sense to me. their real wedding was the legal one not the church one.  thats just a celebration after the fact.

i sometimes feel that too much emphasis is put on the "big white wedding" day  and people are forgetting that the marriage not the day is the point of it all.

So, here's my take on this. And this is coming from a woman marrying another woman in state that has an actual law in our state constitution about how we can't do that legally. In order for us to get any kind of federal marriage benefits, we must present a marriage license from one of the states that recognizes gay marriage. So we had to decide what we wanted to do, we could have done a detestation wedding and it would've have even been far from home. But we decided we want our wedding here. In the place we've made our home. So our wedding day, with our friends and family present, will be our wedding day. That is the day we make a promise in front of the most important people to us to stick it out with one another come hell or high water.

At some point we'll be taking a trip to the state beside us to get the legal bit done. Haven't decided when exactly yet, but we will be doing it. This is paperwork. Nothing more, nothing less. This isn't our wedding day. This is just, the day we get Uncle Sam what he needs so we can get the same benefits as all the other married people. We just have to do it differently.

Coming from that place, I can see them as two separate things. The ceremony, and the paperwork. Now, for most straight couples (and couples living in places that recognize same sex marriage), this occurs on the same day. You get hitched, you sign the paperwork all in one day (there's even often a picture of the paperwork signing!), but sometimes they have to happen on different days. Most people see the ceremony as the important part. The paperwork is just the legal stuff. It's not about it being a big white wedding, it's about making the promise in front of people you care about who care about you.

Now if we're talking about people who keep having wedding after wedding, that's a problem. Just throw a party for yourself already.

Thank you for stating this so well. I'm in a male-female marriage, so my experience is different from yours, but I agree with you on all counts.

My wedding and paperwork were on the same day, but we became husband and wife because we made our commitments in front of the people we love (and facilitated by a leader in our faith). The pastor didn't declare us married because of authority given to him by the government, but rather by the authority given to him by our church.

Since there are so many different beliefs out there, I will honor marriage by whatever measure a couple has chosen to define their marriage, and expect others to show me the same courtesy.

We may differ on the religious aspects, but in my eyes, the paperwork didn't make me 'married' any more than it makes someone without paperwork 'unmarried'.


Allyson

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #41 on: January 23, 2014, 12:38:54 PM »

That will be a hugely important thing to me, and there's nothing that makes my blood boil more than anti-equal marriage folks saying "It's just some paperwork, why do you care?"


You could just look at them and say, "Well, then, why do you?"

For me, I am not a "wedding" person at all. If I get married it'll be paperwork only, 2 witnesses and no ceremony. Maaaaybe a party. But that's pushing it. For others, the 'standing up in front of all family and friends' is the important part. I think it's up to the individual couple. I wouldn't appreciate someone else telling me that doing it that way meant 'not really married' or that we were 'doing it wrong' . And, I'd not do the same to others, either.

I feel like I remember there being serious shade thrown to couples who marry ahead of time, then have the ceremony later, but personally I wouldn't care so long as they weren't doing it twice or something. I am not sure what people mean by the 'social benefits' of marriage; I wouldn't treat a committed living-together couple different than a married couple in any material way I can think of.

Teenyweeny

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #42 on: January 23, 2014, 12:46:13 PM »

That will be a hugely important thing to me, and there's nothing that makes my blood boil more than anti-equal marriage folks saying "It's just some paperwork, why do you care?"


You could just look at them and say, "Well, then, why do you?"

For me, I am not a "wedding" person at all. If I get married it'll be paperwork only, 2 witnesses and no ceremony. Maaaaybe a party. But that's pushing it. For others, the 'standing up in front of all family and friends' is the important part. I think it's up to the individual couple. I wouldn't appreciate someone else telling me that doing it that way meant 'not really married' or that we were 'doing it wrong' . And, I'd not do the same to others, either.

I feel like I remember there being serious shade thrown to couples who marry ahead of time, then have the ceremony later, but personally I wouldn't care so long as they weren't doing it twice or something. I am not sure what people mean by the 'social benefits' of marriage; I wouldn't treat a committed living-together couple different than a married couple in any material way I can think of.

Oh absolutely! If you consider your wedding to be just the two of you, ransom witnesses you found outside, and then you go for a McDonald's afterwards, then more power to you. Honestly. If you feel like your wedding is an intimate beachfront ceremony performed by a friend, and that has no legal standing, then you go for it! If your wedding is a 500 person extravaganza, then go right ahead!

I just don't particularly care whether or not your wedding happens at the same time that you become legally married. Maybe you never do get legally married. Maybe you were legally married a year ago. I honestly do not care.



Corvid

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #43 on: January 24, 2014, 12:18:31 PM »
Because of an international job assignment and immigration issues, my niece and her fiance had to marry about 6 months before the actual wedding they were already in the midst of planning. But we knew they were marrying in their new country at a courthouse so I just sent a congratulations card and then a gift for the actual wedding.

Since they've already been married for almost 6 months, I wouldn't do anything now but wait for the wedding they are planning. I'm assuming since they kept the first one secret they plan for this second one to be their "official" wedding.

POD. DS2 and DIL had to do something similar due to Army timing. The courthouse wasn't their wedding it was legal paperwork.

If they received military spousal benefits effective the date of they went to the courthouse, then they were legally married that day and it was their wedding.

LadyL

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Re: Already married but 'wedding' is in 8 mos. - when to send gift?
« Reply #44 on: January 24, 2014, 12:27:22 PM »
Because of an international job assignment and immigration issues, my niece and her fiance had to marry about 6 months before the actual wedding they were already in the midst of planning. But we knew they were marrying in their new country at a courthouse so I just sent a congratulations card and then a gift for the actual wedding.

Since they've already been married for almost 6 months, I wouldn't do anything now but wait for the wedding they are planning. I'm assuming since they kept the first one secret they plan for this second one to be their "official" wedding.

POD. DS2 and DIL had to do something similar due to Army timing. The courthouse wasn't their wedding it was legal paperwork.

If they received military spousal benefits effective the date of they went to the courthouse, then they were legally married that day and it was their wedding.

I have notice a ideological split in the comments that is interesting. Some people feel that receiving the social/legal benefits of marriage, like tax breaks, military spouse benefits, health insurance, etc. is what indicates a couple are married. Others feel it is the emotional or spiritual transition that matters -  i.e. you are not married until your religion pronounces you so, or until you declare your union in front of family and friends at your wedding. I guess there's a third view (mine) which combines the two, kind of weighting the legal vs. the spiritual/emotional. So a "green card marriage" would not be what I consider a marriage (more of a business arrangement, because it is almost entirely a legal status not a spiritual or emotional one), but I would consider a same sex couple who had a wedding married regardless of their legal status (because of the strong spiritual/emotional joining outweighing the lack of legal status for me).

BIL/SIL are really in the middle for me because they are enjoying the legal benefits of marriage and some of the emotional ones as well (i.e. being congratulated on their marriage, recognized as a social unit, etc.). But if the wedding is important to their emotional definition of marriage I respect that because it's the more subjective factor and I try to err on the side of being less judgy.