Don’t get me wrong, I love planning our wedding. I happily spend lunch breaks reading Wedding Wire, Smashing The Glass and The Knot for vendor reviews (and searching for the perfect flower girl dress!), but I can’t help but realize there is a huge difference between being engaged to your significant other and being engaged WITH your significant other, which many people (and internet search engines) seem to ignore.
When searching “being engaged with your partner,” one of the first articles that popped up was a lengthy list of things to do after getting engaged featuring steps like “tell your parents,” “get a manicure,” and “perfect your proposal story.” While I admit to fulfilling most of the suggestions on the list, I wish it included topics like know each other’s love language or schedule pre-marital counseling. Maybe this thought process is influenced by my counseling education/background or my fear of divorce, but I think emotional engagement is something that needs to be fostered and protected at all stages of a relationship to avoid taking each other for granted and focusing on the unimportant.
All that being said, here is my advice for being engaged WITH your significant other while planning your wedding:
Continue date nights and non-wedding related activities.
When we first got engaged, all I could talk about was getting married and how great our wedding is going to be. While I still believe it’s going to be the best day ever, it can’t be the only thing Harley and I talk about for 16-month engagement period.
I think it’s extremely important to remember what you love about each other and your relationship by continuing to enjoy one another’s company through date nights and shared hobbies even when your wedding is not the topic. For Harley and I, this means we still cheer for our hockey team at least once a week, tease each other over our Fantasy Hockey League standings, and take advantage of our Disney Annual Passes as often as possible. Even if it’s a busy time and we’re just chatting about our day while cooking dinner, the time we spend together is always important and a nice break from work and wedding planning activities.