For BRIDES, by Sherry Amatenstein, LCSW.
“I was so overtired and cranky that I shouted at my fiancé, ‘If it wasn’t for you, I wouldn’t have to be going through all this insanity!’ He started to argue back, saying, ‘Well then I can unpropose! Do you want to call the 100 guests who are coming or should I?’ I said, ‘Let’s divvy it up!’ Then we looked at each other and burst into laughter!” —Tina
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“I had the worst MIL-zilla — constantly driving me crazy throughout the wedding planning. I kept a lot of her demands from my fiancé; she was his mother, after all. But during the wedding rehearsal, when she started trying to stage-manage everything, I took Ted aside and hissed at him, ‘If you don’t get her to back off, I will, and it won’t be pretty!’ He looked at me and I saw thought bubbles over his head with captions like ‘Hoo boy. If I don’t start putting my wife first, there will be hell to pay!’ He said, ‘Okay, but you’ve got to let me hang the Mickey Mouse picture you hate in our bathroom.’ I shrieked, ‘Aaagh. I guess I have no choice!’ and we went back to the rehearsal. We didn’t discuss it again, but he talked to his mother, she was fine during the wedding, and I gnashed my teeth but let Mickey be a part of our decorating scheme.” —Beth
“I had a nutty insecurity dream that Brad ran off with Taylor Swift and left me at the altar. Bursting into tears woke me up, and I screamed at my fiancé, peacefully sleeping beside me, ‘If you want to be with someone else, don’t let me go through with this farce of a wedding!’ The poor guy was so gobsmacked, he fell out of bed! That jolted me back to reality. I apologized, he explained he does love me despite my insanity, and we went on to have a fabulous wedding.” —Jill
“I loved being single and gave it up only because I loved Tim more. But still there were times when I feared what not being sole captain of my life would feel like. So right before the wedding, I lashed out at him: ’If you think I’m going to be Homemaker Hannah, then you’re marrying the wrong girl.‘ He got all huffy: ‘If you seriously think I don’t know the woman I’m marrying, then maybe we are making a mistake!’ I immediately deflated: ‘What? You don’t want to marry me?’ Tim said: ‘Of course I do. But I want you to understand that I want you to be who you are, not make you a Stepford Wife.’ In that moment, my fears fell away. Marriage to this wonderful man would enhance me, not cage me.” —Sheila
“I couldn’t find my something blue — a diamond-crusted sapphire pendant necklace my fiancé had given me as a wedding present. I really lambasted the poor guy: How could he let me lose it? It was his job to not let my airheadedness get in the way. After I was finished ranting, he calmly pointed out that the necklace was hanging around my neck.” —Amanda
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Sherry Amatenstein, LCSW, is a New York City–based marriage therapist and author.