A Wedding As a Rite of Passage

Most cultures support a bride as she goes from being a single woman to being a married woman. There are specific rituals, specific actions, and specific people who help her glide through this transition. Those cultures aren’t so concerned with creating a gorgeous event as they are with helping a woman make an internal shift from one role to another.

That shift is of seismic proportions!

It automatically brings up every emotion you’re capable of having, and those feelings are probably amplified. Our culture is so focused on the Special Day that the internal shift is often ignored.

The bride is the center of attention, but the irony of it is, her emotional self can be ignored. As she makes the shift from “me” to “we” the feelings that come up can end up being projected onto the details of the wedding.

What does that mean?

If you can’t have the kind of flowers you wanted, you feel emotionally overwhelmed – that may stem from the grief, or other feelings you’re encountering inside. Grief! Yes, grief. Whenever we make an internal shift, we lose something and we gain something. At a wedding, you lose being able to be only “you.” From then on, you will be an essential partner focused on “we.” Your old life is essentially dying as a new life takes root.

If you can’t have your wedding in the place you wanted, you may feel angry – that can come up as a result of feeling powerless inside. Powerless! Yes, powerless. Again, from now on, you won’t be in total control in terms of the choices you make in life. There will be a “we” to consider.

If your dress isn’t exactly the way you wanted it to be, you may dissolve into tears – tears can come up because you’re suddenly feeling small and uncertain with a low self-esteem. At any given moment, the child inside you may not be ready to leave home.

Emotions and weddings go together. That’s a given. Almost every bride (and groom!) feels very emotional at some time during the process.

There are lots of people who can help you with the details of your wedding. Wedding coaches help you with your interior life that’s represented by your wedding.

You’ve probably been dreaming of this day since you were a little girl. The first thing you need to do is pull all of your ideas into one radiant vision!

Put away the pictures from all the magazines. Just for a while, put your wedding planner down. Leave behind all of the advice you’ve received from your relatives, friends and shop-owners.

Want we want to do here is make sure you’re clear about exactly what you want for yourself and your groom. Here is an exercise to help you focus on the aspects of your wedding that you would like to create:

Take a deep breath, and now another. In a moment, you’ll close your eyes. When you do, imagine exactly the way you want your wedding to feel. What does your special day feel like for you? Can you see yourself getting dressed? What do you feel like? Can you see yourself at the beginning of the ceremony? How does that feel? Can you see your groom waiting for you? How are you feeling now? As you walk up to be with him, how are you feeling now? As you go through your ceremony, how does that feel?

Take a few moments, and imagine your wedding day from the very beginning until the very end. When you’re through, write down what came to you.

Good job! Were there any surprises?

If you imagined yourself beautiful and relaxed, radiant and in love, you’re very lucky. But many people can’t see a vision at all. Or they see themselves as fearful and anxious.

It’s important to envision your wedding as you would like it, with joy and love, then take a deep breath and relax.

The rite of passage has already begun, so enjoy the journey!


When planning marriage:

  • Make sure you are both on the same track
  • Start thinking of ‘we’ not just me
  • Everything doesn’t have to be perfect
  • Have a spirit of play and joy
  • Emotions and your wedding go together – be aware of internal emotions through the transition
  • Imagine your dream wedding