I never wanted to be THAT guy

It’s pretty standard belief that when it comes to Weddings, guys are not only clueless, but we’re aggressively irritatingly clueless. We become passive aggressive, complain all the time, and start raging against “society” for telling us to “behave” a certain way. We stop thinking (if we ever really did any thinking before hand) and become worse that your stereotypical mother-in-law when it comes to helping with the wedding planning. We become unhelpful and resentful because we don’t like how much the wedding costs, we feel like we’re being shut out of the process because “it’s the bride’s day”, so we drag our feet, make a bunch of sarcastic comments, and piss off our fiancee by going on a bachelor party to Las Vegas and meeting a stripper named Precious. And then we get mad that anyone gets mad at us.

Man. That guy should be dropped off a cliff.

And that guy still exists for some reason. A poster posted two very common THAT guy questions on ask metafilter. His first question was how much a wedding should cost when it was really a screen that weddings are expensive wastes of time. The second question was framed originally as a question where he wanted to get married away from his bride’s family but the bride’s family wasn’t happy about that. It wasn’t a real question though – it was one of those types of questions where he wanted everyone to say that he was right, the bride’s family was wrong, and he even made a joke that the bride’s family didn’t have to attend the wedding if they didn’t like where it was. It was one of those “dark humor” moments that are really a screen for a passive aggressive behavioral trait that guys get at weddings. And how do I know that? He admits to not even fully knowing the budget for his wedding or who is going to pay for it. He isn’t taking the wedding seriously at all; he’s dragging his feet and hope that his passive aggressive behavior will break down his partner and they’ll get married on his terms. That, however, works better at ending engagements rather than getting better wedding terms.

There are a lot of reasons why THAT guy comes up. Part of it has to do with a lack of control, with the feeling that the groom gets shafted at the wedding, and that there’s a big party going on where the groom is specifically on the sidelines of the celebration. Part of this behavior is taught and expressed in the fact that mainstream advertising is bride focused. Open a wedding magazine and it’s 95% ads for dresses and maybe one ad for a tux rental. That’s it. There’s no real attention directed towards guys and that, I think, is the real crux of the issue. Everyone likes to be the focus of attention and it’s really hard to NOT be when you’re use to it. I’ve mentioned this before but it’s what happens when a person never learns to be able to fully live outside their own head. And this overall type of behavior is definitely not something that an Engaged Groom should be doing.

This is kinda why I’m blogging about leading up to the big day. I understand what it’s like to feel slightly shafted from the process. I understand that it’s easy for a guy to feel pretty clueless when it comes to weddings because we’re never really taught to care about them from a young age. I heard more about bachelor parties when I was growing up rather than weddings and that’s not right. One way to step outside of that pre-defined box, to feel as if you have some control over your own life, is to just be engaged with the process. Make decisions, take this wedding seriously, and don’t drag your feet or become a passive aggressive annoying brat. Weddings are stressful. Weddings can be a huge planning ordeal. But if you, Mr Groom, are unable to participate in it successfully with your fiancee, how are you going to be able to handle any of the bigger problems that come in the future? Kids, a house, jobs, retirement, inlaws, deciding on who’s family you stay with during what holidays, arguing over the remote, where cookies go in the kitchen, etc? I’m learning how to work things out with my fiancee now so that our married life is as pleasant as possible. I’ll can wait till my kids show up before I really get stressed out.