Weddings are supposed to be a time when a couple declares their commitment to each other and to their friends and family. The ceremony is meant to be a beautiful celebration of love. However, things don’t always go according to plan. Sometimes a wedding ends up not going as envisioned, leaving the bride and groom full of regret.
A survey by David’s Bridal found 24% of brides wish they had asked people giving speeches to keep it short, and roughly 14% wanted to tell at least one guest to back away from the bar. In yet another wedding survey, nearly 40% of brides said they had regrets about their hair and makeup, and 21% said they would have picked an entirely different wedding party (yikes!).
If you made a wedding mistake you wish you could take back, you’re not alone. Here are the biggest wedding regrets couples have.
1. We wish we would have eaten
After all the taste tests and money spent on catering, some couples completely forget to eat the day of their wedding. As CafeMom user Brenda recalled, “We would have actually eaten our catered dinner! We were so busy taking pictures, listening to speeches from family/friends, and visiting with guests that our first meal out as a married couple was at 1 a.m. after our wedding at Denny’s! We were starving!”
2. We blew our budget
The excitement of planning a wedding can cause you to spend money on some crazy things. One Mama Mia user admits she was more focused on how the event looked than on saving money. “To be honest, I didn’t set a budget, which was really mistake number one. This led to blowing the budget that was later agreed upon between my parents and I. We went way over because of all the shiny things, and the prettier, more special wedding dresses that were, of course, more expensive.”
3. I put myself under unnecessary stress
Stress is often an unavoidable part of getting ready for your big day. However, there are ways to manage it. One bride told Brides magazine that she regrets letting the stress overwhelm her and cast a dark shadow on her big day. “What I regret is spending so much time worrying about little details — the seating plan, the music, the bridesmaids’ dresses… In the end, all the stress I put myself through leading up to the big day was avoidable. Your wedding is perfect regardless of whether certain details don’t work out the way you planned.”
4. I didn’t give my dad a hug or kiss as he gave me away
Your parents are an important part of your day., so it only makes sense to ensure they know how much you appreciate them. Caitlin Krebs told Wedding Wire that she wishes she did more to let her father know how much she cared.
If you were to ever meet my dad, he would be wearing a blue button-up shirt, khaki shorts, and tennis shoes. Never in my 23 years have I ever seen him wear a suit and tie. As we walked down the aisle, we made every step last until he gave me away. He got so choked up that he sat down in a hurry. I didn’t get the chance to give him a hug or kiss. Thank goodness, my mom had a handkerchief waiting for him!
5. I wish people would have put their cellphones away
There’s a time and a place to use your cellphone — and a wedding ceremony is neither the time nor the place. Here’s what Reddit user Alex Godden had to say:
I wish I had asked the officiant to tell people to put their cell phones away. We have so many lovely shots of the ceremony, but in each one there are people in the background holding up cell phones, so you can’t see their faces. One of my friends even “helpfully” decided to video the whole thing, and so every single shot of her has a phone in front of her face. I feel really sad and a little offended that she was focused on that instead of listening to the ceremony and paying attention to our vows.
6. I wish we had been less formal
A formal wedding doesn’t work for everyone. Ashley W. told Darren Brown Photography she felt she would have been more comfortable if the ceremony was more relaxed.
I think the one thing I would go back and change is that our parents wanted more of a formal, large wedding and we would have preferred something smaller and less formal. We initially were going to rent a few chalets somewhere and just have a catered BBQ kind-of-thing. But our parents wanted us to invite the world and offered to pay for the whole dinner, as they knew we didn’t want to have crazy costs. So, it was a hard deal to turn down…but I wish we had kept it a little more informal.
7. We had too many wedding guests
Many couples feel pressured to invite the whole town when it’s time to say “I do.” But it’s best to only invite the people who have had a significant impact on you. One bride told The Knot she found this out the hard way. “I regret letting the wedding become bigger than we originally wanted it. While I loved our entire wedding day, I always felt we didn’t give enough face time to all our guests.”