Dogs were barking, guests were parking...
October 30, 2013 11:25 AM   Subscribe

I'd like some tips for managing capital-a Anxiety and interacting well during a non-traditional, cross-cultural wedding. Difficulty level: I'm the groom.

TL;DR questions below

Before anything: the anxiety I have is entirely regarding the event itself and all the social interaction. The actual "we're getting married" part of it does not bug me. I'm also not at all concerned with the possibility drama or people starting shit or whatever. Everyone in attendance is Good People. There's also a day-of coordinator who will be minding the actual events, and the DJ will also be the MC.

There's a bit of a culture gap with our respective families: my side is secular Soviet Jewish immigrants (but not from NYC), her side goes back a bunch of generations in Minnesota and Wisconsin. She has a big family where everyone has siblings, my only living blood relative is my non-English-speaking grandmother and I'm not actually related most of my few "aunts," "uncles" and "cousins." There will be some traditions from both sides, but the wedding itself is totally secular and a lot more, uh, punk rock (for lack of a better term) than either side is used to when they think "wedding." But the broad strokes are pretty standard: a big dress, an aisle, dancing and drinking and so on.

My fiancee knows the ins and outs of wedding etiquette, my best woman is a clearheaded take-charge sort of person, no person has not been anything but welcoming to anyone else, but there's going to be a point when it is just me, and people I have never met, and they will be paying attention to me and asking me questions. I've only been to a handful of weddings in my life and the whole bride-and-groom-go-around-and-talk-to-you part has always confounded me on the guest side, so I doubly have no idea what to expect on the inside. There's also going to be Emotions and Crying and Hugging and all sorts of shit way the fuck out my wheelhouse.


-What should I expect to get asked?
-What should I mind about the culture gap and the non-traditionalness of the wedding?
-What should I mind about the fact that most of my blood relatives are dead my mother rather recently)?
-How do I mitigate getting exhausted from extended interaction with emotional people?
-What should I do if my anxiety spikes?
-How do I tell the difference between a reasonable concern and being neurotic?

I'm sort of grasping at straws as to what even ask you people so, hey, anything helps. If there's anything relevant I left out, let me know.
posted by griphus to Society & Culture (30 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
I think part of this can fall to your best woman. Can you guys have a "get me the fuck out of this" hand signal?

Then she can dip in and say, "Hey, Griph! Did you see that Joe & Hannah are here? They'd like to chat you up."

You can also have "Joe & Hannah" be a person or couple that makes you feel really, really comfortable to be around. A light, fluffy cloud of non-anxiety and good vibes. While your best woman can be your social butterfly stand-in, you can also have close non-wedding party guest(s) as your home base.

Also, the phrases, "Oh! Excuse me! I haven't checked in with Joe & Hannah yet!" or "Where has my lovely bride gotten to? Excuse me a sec." are your best friends.

Also also, I bet you can disappear to the bathroom for up to 10 minutes at a time, occassionally. People will be chatting, drinking, and generally be not paying attention that much.
posted by ulfberht at 11:36 AM on October 30, 2013 [2 favorites]

In my experience (married twice, attendant at a zillion weddings a year due to my husband's job affiliations), the larger the wedding, the less you will actually have to talk. Assuming that your wedding is on the medium side (more than 40 guests), chances are you will not be having the conversations you're worried about -- once the reception starts, there will be music and food and a MILLION people (even if you only invited a few dozen) grabbing at you to say congratulations and tell you how lovely everything is and wanting to introduce themselves to the new family member. The bride and groom are generally mobbed, the music makes it impossible to hear, and as a result, no meaningful interactions are possible. Smile, say thanks for coming, learn the names of the new people if you can and ask how they're related -- but you probably won't have the chance to get that far, because the next one waiting to congratulate you will intervene. And if anyone does manage to capture your attention for longer than you're comfortable, there are plenty of in-room distractions (I promised we would dance to this song, I want to taste a bite of my dinner before they take it away, we're supposed to take a picture with each table, OMG that's my old roommate I haven't seen him in years!!!) to make sure you can make a clean getaway.

With regards to the cross-cultural ceremony, a lot of couples put together a little program (handed out or on seats at the ceremony) that explain any unusual traditions, along with what they mean to them as a couple. It's also a nice way/place to mention the departed family members who couldn't be with you but whom you miss.

ETA: also, mazal tov!
posted by Mchelly at 11:40 AM on October 30, 2013

Only having been on the guest side of this equation, the questions I've heard are mostly along the lines of "where will the honeymoon be?" and possibly some nosier things depending on the relatives like jokey questions about having kids. At least at the weddings I've been to people mostly just told the couple congrats and how happy they were for them, and maybe offered advice.

My suggestions for managing your anxiety depend more on the structure of the ceremony and reception. Will you be able to take a break at some point to go take pictures? You can always extend something like that to be a bit of a breather. I would try to schedule the cake cutting and any other "event" parts you have so that you do a bit of socializing, then can go sit for a bit. It isn't as calming as being out of the room entirely, but at least you have a little while when you don't have to be "on".

Are there any spots at your venue that you can escape to if you get overwhelmed? Maybe ask your trusted folks to help manage the crowd if you have to flee for a bit. They can circulate and if people are wondering where you went they can offer a casual response. You could also try taking planned breaks at times when people are distracted, like before something officially starts or when food is being served.

posted by brilliantine at 11:41 AM on October 30, 2013 [3 favorites]

I think the fact that you're the groom may give you an "out". It's the bride who people expect to know all that stuff - all most people expect from the groom is to show up. A couple days before his wedding my brother joked that most of the planning was being handled by my sister-in-law and both the mothers - "they just say 'here, sign this,' or 'show up here at ten', and I do," he said. It's kind of the stereotype that the groom is gonna be looking a little shell-shocked before and after the wedding, so even if you do look a little overwhelmed people may just write that off as "aw, isn't that cute, he's all nervous and excited and overwhelmed."

As for what to do about getting anxious and overwhelmed - yeah, you can slip out for a few minutes to the bathroom or to corner your bride in a private room and just chill for a second. People may not miss you, or if they do they'll figure you're somewhere else off in the crowd doing something or maybe getting your wedding photos taken or whatever.

And you may not end up having many conversations with people at all. At one of my best friends' weddings last year, I ended up talking to his mother and brother more than I had a chance to talk to him.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:45 AM on October 30, 2013

I think you are over thinking this.

-What should I expect to get asked?

Where are you going on the honeymoon?
Where will you be living?
How did you meet?
What do you do?

-What should I mind about the culture gap and the non-tradionalness of the wedding?

You will probably get asked a few questions by the older folks. If you break a glass, her side will ask about it, if you don't, your side will. Same goes for all the standard traditions of each religion. I would just repeat the mantra that this is the wedding you both wanted and you tried to incorporate all the important to you traditions of each faith into your ceremony.

_What should I mind about the fact that most of my blood rels are dead and your mom recently?

I think you might have pangs of sadness especially when you are intereacting with all her relatives, but I would look at it in the cliched way that you are gaining a whole other family that you currently don't have.

-How do I mitigatge getting exhausted talking to exhausting people?

Very little you can do here, but I think the adrenaline will be flowing and you will rally. I also would simply put a look of "aha" on your face and say to folks that are draining you, "It was so great seeing you, I must excuse myself."

- What to do about anxiety spikes?

I would have a drink, but YMMV.

- Diff between reasonable concern and insanity?

They are all both reasonable and neurotic. Remember the end game. You are marrying the love of your life and about to start the rest of your life together. Regardless of what happens at the party, you will have each other. Don't sweat the details. Off load on your best woman and friends. Also the coordinator. That is what that person is getting paid for.

Mazel tov!
posted by JohnnyGunn at 11:46 AM on October 30, 2013 [1 favorite]

Make sure your event coordinator/ushers know that you're not having the separation of groom and bride sides of the aisles. It seems less common these days, but that will help with the disparate sizes of your families (not uncommon).

People shouldn't be asking many questions at the reception. If you're having a rehearsal dinner you may get more questions about what you do for a living and where you're from and how you two met if there are members of her family who don't know. But mostly, people will just want to tell you congratulations and how happy they are for you.

Should you not want to answer a question, an easy deflection is to tell them how great the bride is (she's their relative, you both love her) and how happy you are to marry her. Most people go into a wedding expecting they will have very little time with the bride and groom. Your primary role is just to say how Glad you are that they could make it.

And, yes - ask your groomswoman to help you escape with a handsignal or other sign. You probably won't need too many breathers, but just knowing it's an option should help.
posted by ldthomps at 12:10 PM on October 30, 2013

Breathe. It's a lower-stakes event than you think it is. You don't have to be anything you don't want to be.

As a socially-nervous person I find it helpful to know in advance what the expectations are for me and to have a general script thought out ahead of time as to who I'm going to be. Going in with goals for myself helps me to stay out of my own head, where I'm always stumbling around.

At most weddings I've attended, including my own, the expectations for the groom are: 1) show up. 2) Not too drunk. 3) Don't make a fool out of yourself.

That's a really low bar to clear. Everybody understands that you're overwhelmed. Nobody expects you to dissertate on how British colonialism in India was affected by the layout of the cricket fields at Eton or anything.

Who you're going to be:
You're going to be gracious. Especially to people who have traveled a ways to attend, and people you are meeting for the first time. Smile. Be glad to meet them and grateful they have come. Say so.

You're going to be busy. People will understand that you have to keep it brief. You can keep it light and easy and flit across the surface of this party. You can just keep flitting back and forth all day if you want to. You can stand still if you want to.

You're going to be sorry you can't spend more time with them. Really, you are. 100% of them are there to celebrate you and your bride. It's a wonderful feeling.

You're going to be hungry. Make sure you eat something. Seriously, don't forget about this. Give yourself time and permission to eat.

You're going to be present in the moment. Let yourself have this. It's special. Know that the attendees will, or should if they aren't totally rude, let you have this, too. If you let yourself get a little lost in a private reverie, either by yourself or with your bride, that's totally okay. Nobody is judging it or judging you for it. It's totally okay to feel a little loss at the absence of your own family members who have passed. That's natural and human and okay. You can grieve this, a bit. It doesn't mean you don't also have a lot of joy. You can have both.

If your anxiety spikes, notice it. Breathe. Excuse yourself and step outside. Lean on the porch railing a little bit and breathe. Start to notice the sounds from inside. They are all having a good time. They are talking and drinking and having fun. Everything is fine. Your wife(!) loves you. It's all okay. You can do this. Then, when you're ready, turn around and go back inside. They are happy to see you.

posted by gauche at 12:27 PM on October 30, 2013 [6 favorites]

If possible, plan a short amount of time just after the ceremony where you and your bride can be in a room, in private, before you join the teeming mass of guests. This will help with the anxiety, and give you a moment to collect yourself, and to just BE with each other.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:30 PM on October 30, 2013 [3 favorites]

Most guests at weddings don't have the time to don their Inquisitor costumes and grill you. They'll ask you how you two love-birds met, and where you're from and what do you do, and where will you live and other blah questions. You'll have alcohol and each other to get you through the festivities.
And you don't have to go around and chat--I didn't at my wedding. People came up to us, sometimes with envelopes (ala Goodfellas) and sometimes just to wish us well and then they went off to get more champagne.
You're not the host at the party. You don't have to worry about people having fun and mingling and all that stuff.
posted by Ideefixe at 12:34 PM on October 30, 2013

>but there's going to be a point when it is just me, and people I have never met, and they will be paying attention to me and asking me questions.

Does it help to think about the fact that, as the groom, they are pretty much going to be thinking the best of you with whatever question they ask? (especially Midwesterners.) Strangers or not, they love you because they love the person you love.

At the weddings I've seen and been part of, the absolute lengthiest conversations with unknown people are two sentences or less, because you don't have time for more. Comments will be about the weather and how rain on your wedding day is supposedly lucky, or about how delicious the food is, how lovely the bride/ceremony/reception location is, and other very light complimentary things. If roleplaying would help, practice taking compliments. As said upthread, the bar for the happy couple is very low. Just stand there and look happy.

I won't lie, it's still a pretty intense social situation. If you need a break, TAKE A BREAK. Beforehand, find an out-of-the-way space in the reception area that you can go to chill (with the best lady or bride or on your own). It is really really common for the bride and/or groom to disappear for lengths of time--they take pictures, they canoodle, they drink, they change clothes. The reception itself is kind of Game Face Time. If you drink to loosen up, don't drink too much. Tell your best lady to put food in your hands a few times because you'll probably be too busy to notice you haven't eaten, and maybe have her check in a few times to see if you need her to steer you somewhere quiet. (I had a bad cold at my wedding and cried tears of relief when my mom did this.)

posted by tchemgrrl at 12:36 PM on October 30, 2013 [1 favorite]

During my last wedding (ha!), my mom had a tendency to walk up to me and say things like, "Is your friend Henry on drugs right now?" and I just wanted to kick her.

This is a job for your Best Woman: don't feel like you have to answer any questions you don't want to, or stay around in those kinds of conversations. But you should also remember to maintain, maintain, maintain. Complain later, or in the bathroom, or whatever. Just get through it. And that sounds like it's a horrible hill to climb, but it'll really be okay.

If you can have a "head table" that is really just a little cafe table for two, that's a nice time to just be with your wife and hold hands.

Us Midwesterners are pretty self-sufficient. Just face us at each other and say, "Faye, this is Melba, and did you know that you're both from Anoka?" and we'll be off and running. I can't tell you how many weddings I've been to where the "real party" involves the stupid stuff our family says to each other while all crowding around the same two tables. We're very happy to be there celebrating with you, but we retreat to our own in-jokes and people we know we can poke (literally).
posted by Madamina at 12:48 PM on October 30, 2013 [2 favorites]

Since you say that anything helps, I'll just mention that the event is likely to pass asa big blur and lots of it will be forgotten in a few months. The details, I mean - not the overall event stuff.

-How do I mitigate getting exhausted from extended interaction with emotional people

Beg off with a "Oh - there's so-and-so - I need to go say hello" or something along those lines. You and your betrothed are the stars of the show for sure, but people will clump up and do their own things anyway. Also, most folks know (or should know) that one-on-one facetime with the happy couple will be pretty limited, even during the reception.

Anyway - congratulations to the both of you! Have fun - it'll be over soon enough and then you can get on with all the rest of the good stuff.
posted by jquinby at 1:01 PM on October 30, 2013 [1 favorite]

Definitely get your Best Woman involved, or another friend or two who can get you out of any situations you find awkward. If you don't feel comfortable with going around to all the tables and talking to people, don't! We sat at our table for the entire dinner and maybe visited like half the tables at some point, but by the time we got up everyone was dancing or drinking at the bar, so we kind of skipped that part. You can also always excuse yourself to go talk to your bride / say hello to someone / use the restroom / get a drink / get another piece of cake / whatever, because you're the groom and those are all entirely valid excuses to leave a conversation during a wedding if you are one of the people getting married.

And honestly, if I didn't have to explain to my super-traditional-all-marriages-must-be-in-a-Catholic-church grandmother why we had a ceremony officiated by my uncle in a hotel and walked into our wedding reception to the Imperial March while my new husband wore a Darth Vader mask, I doubt you'll have to explain any of your non-traditional elements to anyone.
posted by bedhead at 1:02 PM on October 30, 2013

When I was randomly fretting at the prospect of being at the center of attention at my wedding a few weeks back, my bridesmaid reminded me of something very important: everyone there is on your side. What a difference it made to think of it like that! Even the people there who didn't really know me knew and loved my wife and saw how happy the two of us were together, so for that day at least they were rooting for me, too. And our wedding was the first lesbian wedding that most of our relatives (many of whom were some combination of midwestern, elderly, religious, and/or conservative) had ever attended, yet I felt nothing but total love coming from everyone I spoke with. If your wedding is non-traditional you might get comments about that when you do the walk and talk, but they're most likely to be of the "What a unique musical selection! / Where did you get that reading from? / I never would have thought of arriving to my wedding in the Wienermobile!" variety rather than anything unpleasant - people will probably be on their best behavior with you, even if they titter over anything amongst themselves afterwards.

I know the trope is that weddings bring out the worst in people, but if you're dealing with good folks anyway as you say, I think you're going to find that most people love love, enjoy seeing two people who are ridiculously happy with one another, and will go out of their way to help make things easy for you because of that.

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding!
posted by DingoMutt at 1:16 PM on October 30, 2013 [4 favorites]

Nth'ing the "hand signal" ideas above. One further tip -- set it up with a couple/few of your friends rather than just the Best Woman. That way, she won't have to be watching you all the time, and it won't be quite so apparent that you're being rescued by the same person over and over again.

-What should I expect to get asked?
"So what's it like being a Jew?" or "I knew a Russian guy in the Army. Name was Karpov or Kasparov or Chernobyl or something like that. Ever met him?"
All of these sorts of things are half "Ah, I have Questions" and half "I don't know what to say to this person I'm now related to, so I'll grab onto the one or two things I do know about him just to start the conversation." Don't let it get to you, even after the tenth time you've explained the same thing.

-What should I mind about the culture gap and the non-traditionalness of the wedding?
Some people will disapprove of some damn thing or another. If they bring it up, smile and say, "We're crazy kids, whaddaya gonna do?"

-What should I mind about the fact that most of my blood relatives are dead my mother rather recently)?
Be prepared to answer or deflect "So, where are your parents?" People who ask are genuinely trying to be kind. Remember that.

-How do I mitigate getting exhausted from extended interaction with emotional people?
Take lots of trips to the bathroom. Don't drink too much (take the amount you think you can drink and halve it). Don't be afraid to just say, "Woo, gotta go sit down for a minute! In the meantime, have you talked to this random person I just grabbed?"

-What should I do if my anxiety spikes?
See above re hand signal and going to the bathroom. Scout out a private-ish room near the hall that you can just slip into quick and breathe for a few minutes.

-How do I tell the difference between a reasonable concern and being neurotic?
Ask someone you trust (best woman, bride, etc.), and be prepared to believe them. They all want you to be happy and will know your triggers.
posted by Etrigan at 1:18 PM on October 30, 2013 [1 favorite]

everyone there is on your side.

Absolutely. The odd thing about this being your gig is that while you may feel a little weird saying almost the same thing to a lot of people "Thanks so much for coming, it means a lot to us to have you here" every person will be happy to hear it and it will be meaningful to them. This is true for a lot of what will be happening. You are a good person, your fiancee is a good person, you are excited to be getting married and you are lucky that the people at your wedding seem to be good people. This is like Wedding Jackpot and already you are doing so great. I recently attended a wedding where the groom had a very small bunch of family (and no parents, nothing bad, they were just distant and couldn't travel) and it was no big thing. He had friends there and was clearly family to his now-wife's family and people just don't make that much of a big deal about that.

When you get tired it's totally appropriate to tell the person talking to you "I have to find $SPOUSE" or even just "I have to check on a thing" and exit. When I was managing a large social event (a memorial service and not a wedding but there is some overlap and I asked about it here) I would often find further and further bathrooms to go to just to get a bit of a walk in and clear my head. As much as the wedding is FOR the two of you, people expect weddings-as-events to be more just parties where people get together and gab and eat and whatever. People will not be expecting much in the way of "quality time" with the two of you so if you can just make sure you say hi and thank you and express your general happiness to be alive and in love and celebrating with them things should be just fine. Congrats to you.
posted by jessamyn at 1:25 PM on October 30, 2013 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks for all the advice and good wishes so far!

I forgot one thing:

What the hell do I do about this anxiety-nausea?
posted by griphus at 2:13 PM on October 30, 2013

Would it be possible to include, in one of the public parts of the wedding, a few words about your mother and how you wish she could be there? This would be nice in general and also head off some of the awkward questions.
posted by ostro at 2:14 PM on October 30, 2013

What the hell do I do about this anxiety-nausea?

What do you do about it in other circumstances? If it arises in other circumstances, do you happen to notice that it is mostly in the anticipation (like stage fright) or in the performance of the event itself? Because stage fright-type nausea is totally normal and what you do for that is rehearse a little bit, either in your mind or in your body to get used to doing the thing.

If you're having that now, maybe you can manage it by remembering how you are at other kinds of parties where you don't necessarily know everybody but everybody is having a good time and there's a general good feeling going around the room. You're there, and maybe you're not saying a ton, you're not the life of the party but it's okay. The host is glad you're there. People you just met like you and think you're good stuff. Feel that. That's how it's going to be. (And in all likelihood, if your stage fright is like mine and like anybody's, you're going to be just fine on your wedding day. This is just for you managing it now.)

If you get anxiety-nausea during the performance of a stressful thing, rather than before, make a plan that involves noticing the nausea, knowing it's a feeling that you are having, breathing deeply, and giving yourself whatever you need. Everyone at your wedding reception wants you to feel good and feel comfortable. Everyone is going to be cool with it if you step away for a second to get your bearings. Have a drink of water. Eat a roll. Breathe. It's going to be okay.
posted by gauche at 2:29 PM on October 30, 2013 [1 favorite]

No one you don't know is going to say much more to you than "congratulations!! You're such a lucky guy!!"

I fretted about my (small, lowkey) wedding and it turned to be a BLAST. Everyone there loves you, your fiancé, or both.
posted by kestrel251 at 4:03 PM on October 30, 2013

We've been together for years but only tied the knot 2 years ago. We eloped. MIL is NEVER going to forgive me. All of the advice here is ultra-sound, especially if you have a best woman you can trust. Mine drew my eyebrows on for me and laughed when I flipped off a lady giving me guff at the ATM. Yours can pull you away at a given signal to your chosen safe space. I was spoiled in that we got married at my studio building so the whole place felt like a safe home to me, but if it takes establishing one for you (water! Snacks!) then DO THAT. Best of luck and lots of love to you, it's going to be fine!
posted by at 5:16 PM on October 30, 2013

I'm from Jewish immigrants and married in Minnesota. Only my wife's not Minnesotan. She's half Native American, half rich white southerner.

There was drama between the families. But I was too psyched to care or notice.

Actually most Minnesota weddings seem to have drama. You can't invite 300 people and provide liberal alcohol without bringing along some longstanding disagreements.

When the day comes, you will not care.

But in the planning stages, I'd definitely ask the bartenders to keep an eye on anyone with a drinking problem. Less vodka, more marinated herring.
posted by miyabo at 8:39 PM on October 30, 2013

Oh, one other cultural difference -- a number of relatives assumed they could just stay in our house, without asking. Like 8 people. In our 2-bedroom house. I realize it sounds silly but do verify that everyone's on the same page with regard to accommodations.
posted by miyabo at 8:51 PM on October 30, 2013

If possible, plan a short amount of time just after the ceremony where you and your bride can be in a room, in private, before you join the teeming mass of guests. This will help with the anxiety, and give you a moment to collect yourself, and to just BE with each other.

Call it yichud and it's traditional!

Another Jewish custom is to fast the day of the wedding until after the ceremony (the fast is broken at yichud). That might ramp up your anxiety but it might also help you not get sick and/or have a physical sensation to distract you from the mental ones.

A secular custom is that I'm pretty sure this is what the wedding attendants are for - to distract you, engage you, soothe you, and make the world function around you. Let your close friends be there for you, they will be glad for the opportunity.

Mazel tov!
posted by Salamandrous at 5:16 AM on October 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

When I have anxiety-nausea, Rolaids or Tums help. Some people find that having a couple of non-buttery crackers, like Saltines, can settle their stomach a bit.
posted by wryly at 10:36 AM on October 31, 2013

Another good stomach-settler is peppermint tea (just peppermint leaves, no other thing in the tea bag - and no milk or sugar). It may also give you the benefit of a tiny-bit-fresher breath.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:54 AM on October 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Some folks swear by those seasickness bands that apply pressure to the inside of the wrists for nausea. Not sure how that'd square with the rest of your getup, but I thought I'd toss it out there. If you don't want to wear the band, you could just try the pressure point on your own.
posted by jquinby at 11:06 AM on October 31, 2013

Imma tell you about my wedding day drugs. I woke up on the day of the event and puked from nerves, which I had never done in my life. You can find some good stress management tips in my crazy wedding day thread, but I'll tell you about the drugs right here.

I had a friend who was pregnant, and she gave me some of her Zofran that she had for morning sickness. It's used for cancer patients, too. Then, when I was freaking out on my honeymoon, I got a prescription for hydroxyzine, aka Atarax. The nurse line also recommended simply taking some OTC Benadryl, since antihistamines and antinausea drugs are very similar.

Zofran and hydroxyzine are prescription drugs; Benadryl isn't (thank God). Neither is a ginger chew -- I like those Reed's crystallized ginger bits in a resealable bag. I got reacquainted during my recent pregnancy.

For me, none of those drugs did anything other than calm me down. I really didn't get drowsy or foggy like I'd done with Xanax on the one occasion I tried it. So if you're the kind of person who thinks he may need pharmaceutical intervention but doesn't take that kind of stuff otherwise, stay away from the big guns and consider something like that.
posted by Madamina at 1:56 PM on October 31, 2013

the whole bride-and-groom-go-around-and-talk-to-you part has always confounded me on the guest side

The newly-weds are the people who many guests want to see most, and going around to tables is an efficient way to personally interact with all the guests and thank them for support. There are far too many people at a wedding for this to happen organically, so if the couple want to see all their guests this is often the only reliable way. And some guests (especially older folks and those who traveled to get there) will be put out if it seems like the bride and groom didn't make any effort to say hello to them.

It's up to you whether you want to go around the room, but when you're talking to whole tables at a time you're not going to have any deep conversations. In fact it's a good way to talk to people you may have invited out of obligation or the like. Few people will ask uncomfortable questions in front of an entire table... it'll probably be, "Hi, we wanted to thank you all for coming! We are honored to have you at our wedding!" and an exchange of light pleasantries and questions about your honeymoon. You might get "oh, that was an interesting/unusual/odd ceremony," to which you should just smile and say "thank you, glad you noticed... it was exactly what we wanted!"
posted by zennie at 9:25 PM on November 2, 2013

Response by poster: The wedding went smoother than I could have imagined. Thank you all!
posted by griphus at 3:38 PM on November 4, 2013 [2 favorites]

« Older How to get schengen visa fast from US with expired...   |   How do I inspire a hungry imagination? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.