Over the course of the past year, I’ve been preparing for my wedding by finding a dress, sending out invitations, and selecting vendors, among many other bridal tasks. While I have been busy with these bride-to-be duties, I’ve also been using the preparation time to think about how I’ll be entering a new phase in married life while also maintaining my current friendships.
Some of my friends seemed anxious about my upcoming marriage, and when I asked them what was going on, they expressed how they were fearful about the thought of “losing me” to my husband. I hope they know that as I start this new chapter, I won’t be abandoning them. Here are three things I want my friends to know now that I’m getting married.
1. Romantic love is not a replacement for my friendships
Female friendships mean the world to me, and just because I’m entering into marriage doesn’t mean that I’m replacing my friends. When I started dating my fiancé Michael seven years ago, I was careful to make time for both him and my friends. I learned to balance the relationships in my life as well as value them in unique ways.
As much as my fiancé and I enjoy spending time together, I look forward to my friend-focused activities. It’s healthy for Michael and me to express our individuality and pursue our own interests and activities. My friends and I love having movie nights where we watch romcoms and eat ice cream together. Meanwhile, my fiancé gets together with his friends to play games like Magic: The Gathering (a complex game I’ve never had an interest in).
2. Being in a relationship with my fiancé brings out the best in me
When my sister got married, I noticed an increase in her overall happiness and well-being. My brother-in-law is constantly there for her, supporting her when she’s down. I’ve loved seeing my sister so happy. As a result, ever since she got married, our relationship as sisters and best friends has been strengthened.
Similarly, my fiancé brings out the best in me. He knows me, cares for me, and loves me deeply. I feel more relaxed and comfortable when I’m in his presence. I used to get very stressed about my job, and my fiancé has helped me to put things in perspective and not worry so much about what I can’t control. And I know my friends have noticed this positive change in me since Michael and I began dating, and I’m confident that I’ll continue to grow for the better throughout my marriage to him.
3. I will always celebrate and support my friends
The excitement around weddings is drawn out with engagement parties, bridal showers, bachelorette parties, and of course the wedding itself. With so much excitement around one relationship, it’s easy to get the wrong message that getting married is the most important thing someone can accomplish in their life.
I want my friends to know that I will be there for them when they get their dream jobs, earn acceptance to law school, or buy their first homes. If they decide to get married, I will be there for them as well, but there is so much more to a person than their romantic relationship. My friends are incredibly smart, kind, and talented, and I will continue to celebrate their inner beauty as time goes on.
Overall, I want my friends to know that my deep love and care for my fiancé does not take away from the deep love and care I have for them. My fiancé’s generosity and kindness continue to inspire me to be the best version of myself and the best friend I can be.