A Secret Wedding:
Is it for you?
Do an online search for ‘secret wedding,’ and you’ll find a surprisingly long list of celebrities who have chosen to forego the big ceremony and splashy reception for something much quieter.
So quiet, in fact, that few others knew about the marriage until after the fact!
Often the couple arranges for a celebrant and witnesses and simply show up, just the two of them, to make their vows in private. Sometimes they bring a trusted friend or two to serve as witnesses, swearing them to secrecy. However they handle it, the celebrities say their vows without cameras flashing and journalists shouting questions.
It makes sense for those who live in the public eye, but might an ultra-private, even secret, wedding be just the ticket for you and your intended?
Our officiants have done many such secret weddings, and the couples have given a variety of reasons for their choice.
1. The couple’s wishes conflicted with one or both sets of parents’ wishes for the wedding. In many cases, parental pressure for a traditional wedding would include many guests the couple didn’t know.
2. Sometimes, the parents or grandparents held religious beliefs they wished to see reflected in the wedding while the couple held different spiritual views.
3. It may be that an important family member has a tendency to say or do embarrassing things at weddings, but leaving that member off the guest list would create problems for the newlyweds.
4. Family members do not always get along well, and sometimes their conflict dominates family occasions.
5. Occasionally, even though the couple is legally of age, their parents do not approve of the wedding or its timing.
6. In some cases, the couple simply do not feel the desire for lots of people witnessing their special moment.
7. The preparations of a larger wedding can be overwhelming, creating unwanted stress during what couples want to be a time of happy anticipation.
8. While the couple may want to focus on their love and their new life together, the details of the wedding, the food, the gowns, etc. can easily take over.
If you and your intended like the idea of a secret wedding, here are some tips.
1. Discuss the idea thoroughly so that you are in agreement. Be prepared to explain to family and friends the reasons behind your choice of a secret wedding.
2. If you bring witnesses from your circle, realize that some loved ones will be hurt to have been excluded. Again, be prepared with reasons for your choice.
3. Be sure to have a few photos taken. Loved ones will want to see the big moment, even if they weren’t there to enjoy it with you.
4. Consider having an announcement party to let everyone know your surprise (and to avoid complaints that someone wasn’t the first to know).