Should I call off the wedding?

By Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

My fiancé’ and I have been together for 4 and 1/2 years. We have been engaged for a little over a year and a half, and our wedding is in 18 days. Up until recently, everything was pretty good. I was always amazed at how functional we were compared to couples around us.

He helped with some wedding stuff, like the venue, the food and then picked the groomsmen’s outfits, after a lot of me nagging.

Lately, he has completely changed. He is completely resistant to doing anything wedding related. There are a lot of last minute details that need to be done, and he fights me every step of the way.

It is more difficult because his family is completely uncooperative, even though they aren’t paying.

I don’t even really want him to help if he doesn’t want. What I do need is his support, and he refuses to give me any. I can’t talk to him about anything because he just ignores me.

It wasn’t always like this, just the last month or so has it gotten really bad. He doesn’t hear when I talk to him, he gets mad at me for nagging at him to do things that he said he’d do, as if I enjoy it, and he leaves every last thing to me, and gets annoyed.

I am so stressed I was hyperventilating last night after we got in a fight. I was lying in bed crying, and he came in, asked if I washed his laundry, and then went into the living room and played video games. This morning, on our way to my parents to do wedding stuff, I tried to explain to him that I was upset and needed his support, and I thought he listened. When we got to my parents he took a 3-hour nap, and complained because I wanted to stay for dinner.

He also quit smoking a while back, and then started again a couple months ago, which I wasn’t happy about, but he promised only to bum cigarettes or to buy them one at a time rather than as packs, especially because money is really tight right now. Then, he complained to me because I spent money on DIY projects for the wedding (because they saved money in the long run) and he didn’t think I should have. I then found a carton of cigarettes he had hidden when I was cleaning the next weekend. I was so mad that he had lied to me, and then that he had complained about my spending habits! We talked it out, and I thought things were better, but now I don’t know.

Am I being bridezilla, or is there something going on here? I am so scared of canceling my wedding, but I don’t want to marry the wrong person! What do I do?

A: I am going to go way out a limb here. I will give you two immediate actions I think make sense. But if these don’t change your mind enough I am going to suggest something unusual: Have the wedding, have the party, but DO NOT make the ceremony official. I’m a romantic at heart, and believe in the power of love, but I am also a realist. You don’t sound like bridezilla as much as he sounds like King Kong.

Get in front of a couples counselor for a one-shot extended session. Some of this may be pre-wedding jitters, some of it may be part of your core characteristics, meaning that both of you are showing more of who you are under this stress. A couples session to air this out and get professional feedback would be helpful. Here is a list of qualified therapists in your area who may be able to help.

Secondly, I would carve out some serious time, perhaps a full day, or at least several hours, for the two of you to be completely alone, with the purpose of discussing the viability of moving forward. Shut off your cell phones and give yourselves a chance to put the issue squarely in front of you. Keep out other distractions and focus on the question at hand.

Now back to my original thought. If the two of you can’t fully agree that this feels as right as can be — then have the celebration –- call it a commitment ceremony or whatever you like — and have the party. You can always do the official thing later on. But if in three months or six if it doesn’t go the way you had hoped you will be able to untangle yourselves with much less red tape and confusion.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan

Photo

 

 

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 12 Nov 2010

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2010). Should I call off the wedding?. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 26, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2010/11/12/should-i-call-off-the-wedding-3/