The most heart-felt and beautiful part of any wedding ceremony is, in my opinion, the moment the couple share their vows.
However, this is one area which couples seem to get most concerned about. What to say? How to say it? What happens if one is full of lengthy heartfelt sincerity and the other is a quick witty ditty?
Argh! Panic not though – read my handy tips on how to write your vows which will help you through this part of your ceremony.
Where to start
You’ve got the blank piece of paper. You’ve got the pen. You’ve got total mind-blank. So, take a deep breath, pour yourself a beverage (alcoholic or otherwise depending on your preference) and ask yourself the following questions and write down your answers:
Why do you love your partner? How would you describe him/her to a stranger? What do they do that makes them different to anyone else you’ve ever been with?
What do you want to promise them you’ll always do throughout your relationship? Do you have some flaws that you will try to improve? Do they have some flaws you’ll promise to overlook? If in the future you have hard times, what do you promise to always do during this period?
Where do you see your future together? What support will you give them to reach these goals?
Does your partner have children, or do you already have children together – of the fur or non-fur variety – if so, what kind of parent/step-parent do you promise to be?
Forget your audience
Try to forget your audience. Write your vows for your partner and not for your guests. This may sound obvious, but I think it’s easy get hung up on ‘will people laugh’ or ‘will my friends and family think these romantic enough’. Imagine it’s just you and your partner, and you’re getting one chance to really explain to them exactly what you promise to do throughout your married life together.
It is also worth writing your vows as close to the ceremony date as possible. This might sound a bit ‘what the ….?!’ but writing your vows too far in advance can lead to over-editing and ending up with something which sounds insincere or over-written.
I also provide the option to couples of sharing their vows with me prior to the ceremony. Getting a second opinion can really help and can give you the assurance you need that you’ve written the right words.
If you’re completely freaking out…
You don’t have to have personalised vows. If you find that the thought of sharing your feelings about your partner in front of your friends and family excruciating and it’s going to outweigh any enjoyment of your ceremony, then don’t feel pressured to do it. If you want to omit this part of the ceremony, you may wish to consider other alternatives, which could be 1) share your personalised vows with your partner after the ceremony when it’s just the two of you, 2) opt for something more standard and less personal (there’s a plethora of options on the internet or I can help you) or 3) write something yourself but ask your celebrant to read them out for you.
Although the sharing of personalised vows can be one of the highlights of the ceremony, don’t let this part of your day overly stress you. A good celebrant will make this aspect of your ceremony a truly magic aspect of your day and will support you through the process. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you’d like to discuss further by contacting me at email@example.com or on 0478041227.