My other half proposed to me on 13th February 2010. I was pregnant at the time and I was not expecting it – at all. Of course, I said yes and was beyond happy at the thought of becoming Mrs B. How did I go from saying YES to wanting a secret wedding?
Why A Secret Wedding?
Firstly, I had a miscarriage a few weeks after we got engaged, and sank into a big depressed funk. It took months for my body to physically recover, and I felt like a huge failure.
Everyone was going on about the wedding, trying to arrange to go dress shopping or suggesting I browse wedding venues online. A big fancy wedding didn’t appeal to either of us, though. We mentioned possibly going to Gretna Green to a few people, and they all wanted to come too. Not much chance of a quiet ceremony with both of our families in tow.
We were very much aware that if we invited some relatives, we’d have to invite everyone and neither of us wanted that. Nothing against our families, of course but it was meant to be OUR day. My Dad passed away before hubby and I got together, so I knew a big family affair would be painful, and I’d spend half the day upset about him not being there.
In the end, we decided to get married in secret. We literally went to the local registry office April 2010 and booked a slot for a Monday Morning in June. Of course, nobody had a clue what we were up to. We bought our rings, chose our music and vows, and bought a new suit for hubby and a dress and shoes for me. While all of this was going on, I was chief bridesmaid for one of my best friends, and planning a huge hen party to Ibiza. Unknown to all of our friends on the trip, it was my hen do too haha! I asked the bride to be if her and her hubby to be would be witnesses for our secret wedding.
How Was Our Wedding Day?
On the day, we all met at our house then headed to the registry office, where we tied the knot. We chose the smallest registry office, and it was perfect. We still got to take photos, and it was a stress free event. Once I had become Mrs B, we all headed off to Giraffe and indulged in a literal Wedding Breakfast. (Ok it was Brunch, but it was still before noon)! Who says a secret wedding can’t involve food!
How Did People Take The News?
After we ate, hubby and I went to tell my mum in person. I felt my Mum deserved to be told face to face what we’d done, as she had been the only one who understood why we didn’t want a big wedding. Once we’d broke the news to her, we sent a picture message to all of our family and friends of my hand with my wedding ring on. The message simply said, “Guess what we did this morning”. Some people were shocked, and some were disappointed they hadn’t been there. It was our day though, and we did it the way we wanted to. Our day was perfect for us.
Are you considering eloping? Here’s a few tips I learnt during our time….
- Have a code name. If anyone overhears you saying “our wedding”, the cat will be out of the bag. We said, “our trip”, so people wouldn’t realise we were planning our secret wedding.
- Choose your witnesses carefully. Can they keep a secret?
- Get your nick nicks sorted in advance. “Something old” was my Dad’s wedding ring which was round my neck on a chain. “Something new” for me was my dress. My friend lent me some earrings for my “something borrowed”, and a blue garter was my “Something blue”.
- Decide how you’ll tell people. We have family all over the country so getting them all together in one place is almost impossible. We did consider planning a fake engagement party and announcing there that we’d had a secret wedding, and the party was actually a belated reception.