If you haven’t read Brigid’s blog from yesterday stop and do it now…I’ll wait.  She always impresses me, but her ability to so easily showcase the most frustrating part of this whole experience is wonderful.  I mean really, it is 2011.

It all started with our first meeting with a caterer.  I set up the meeting, I sent her all the preliminary information, I asked 90% of the questions, and at the end of the meeting she turns and says, “So Brigid, have you picked out your colors yet?”  My immediate thought was, “They’re my colors too, you ____.”  It only got worse from there.  As everyone expected answers from my lovely future bride, I got given bonus points for being “interested.”  The culmination was the tuxedo shop.  While I examined shawl lapels versus notch lapels, I heard the idiot behind me congratulate Brigid because I “had opinions about stuff.”

There are far too many sociological issues at play to fully examine here (thesis anyone?), but here are a couple initial thoughts.  As we talked about this last night (don’t be jealous that you and your partner don’t have evening discussions about the socialization of gender roles) I confessed to feeling guilty about my rage at this.  Because on the one hand, isn’t it sad that the white, straight, protestant, male feels a little disenfranchised by all of this?  On the other hand, why is wedding planning the only place where the woman is expected to take the lead and the power?  Again, these are really just tip of the iceberg questions.

Most importantly, why doesn’t everyone recognize that this is OUR wedding.  We both have an equal stake in its success and the commitment it represents.  Even our friends give me “extra credit” for being SO involved.  The same way Brigid doesn’t want the pressure and judgement that comes with her “position”, I don’t want to be congratulated for simply doing my part.  It really does show us how much farther we have to go towards any real equality.  Again, the tip of the iceberg.  I can’t even imagine how frustrating this might be for same-sex couples.

So, what’s the point?  I think it is that we men have to do better.  Grooms of the world, unite and participate fully.  Quit using excuses like “she’s planned this since she was 6” or “I’m just no good at this stuff.”  I’m not blaming you…maybe you didn’t have two sisters, a mom that taught you to make bows, and a dad who wasn’t afraid to hug.  The point is that now it is up to you.  If we all start demanding that caterers and florist everywhere consider our opinions too, who knows what might happen.  What if the expectation was that we cared about more than the bachelor party and the band?  We can do this.

This is obviously not just about weddings, but it seems to manifest itself here in an unusually intense way.  Why are people still so shocked when traditional gender roles are bent?  What can you do to help?  I know what I’m going to do…I’m going to try and take some of the pressure off my sweetheart.  I’m going to become Groomzilla!!!


10 Comments on "Groomzilla!!!"

  1. So thoughtful and well-said … you are a wise man. Thanks for helping so much.

  2. david, I’m really proud of you for having opinions!

    do Brigid, what IS your color palette? You never answered that question.

    Sarcasm doesn’t play well on the internet :). I agree with both your blog posts – lyzz and I found much the same when we planned our wedding. For a few of our vendors, we just didn’t give them the choice of dealing with both of us – they got one or the other. The caterer, for example, only dealt with me. She was awesome, and lyzz certainly had questions, but she knew that I was her point person. It doesn’t deal with the underlying issues, but it solved some of the symptoms :).

  3. I’m going to play the opposite side of what I said yesterday: Maybe women have their part to play in all of this too, to quit reinforcing the stereotype that we are psychotic control freaks about the wedding. Brig, I swear I’m not talking about you. I was totally that girl.

  4. Christine Bowman | April 8, 2011 at 10:24 am | Reply

    Way to go David! I agree with you 100%. If this is how you all will approach your marriage, you all are in for a lifetime of fun. And your dad does give great hugs!

  5. Josh, I like that idea…we’re doing that a little, but we should probably do it more.

    Tara, it’s a combination of course. It’s a chicken and egg thing too…if they didn’t expect it, we wouldn’t feed it, and …

  6. Thanks Christine… all that pesky education we received making us think about how we live our lives…

  7. David, we appreciate the point of view and agree that men’s role are now expanding into wedding planning…and should. I hope you don’t mind, we placed a link to this on @SophGroomMag’s twitter page. Men are getting involved, should be involved and should feel invited to be involved with the wedding process. If you get a chance, search for Sophisticated Groom magazine in bookstores. We’re trying to provide the male’s voice to the process.

  8. That’s the best asnwer of all time! JMHO

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