Thursday, November 5, 2009

Why Do Some People Cry at Weddings?

Weddings are on my mind of late; must have something to do with the upcoming nuptials in California in let's say, about 9 days. Yikes!

Among other tasks, it's time to get prepared for the inevitable (or perhaps not?) uncontrollable flow of tears. Actually, I have no idea how I'll react. At my own wedding, there were no tears, not even close. But now, put me in the midst of wedding guests sitting in witness of the grand event and the outcome is vastly different. All I need to hear is the first few notes of the processional for the bridesmaids and I'm a lost cause. Truly. And, once the bride starts down the aisle I'm off the deep end, awash in an uncontrollable flood.

What's totally dumb is that I never learn my lesson. I continue to show up at weddings with nary a tissue in sight or at best, one wimpy little sheet stuffed into a teeny, tiny clutch between the lipstick and the cell phone. Needless to say, by mid service, I look like I've been crying for a week and the tears keep welling up. From where? What's the source of this never ending fountain?

Which brings me to the "why" of this situation. Why do weddings make some people cry? In the midst of my silent wedding wails, I haven't a clue why I'm reacting this way. Tears of joy? Happiness? Salutation to love? The start of a new journey of commitment one to another? I'd really like to know.

What I do know is that this time around, I'm showing up prepared. Even if I have to slip the entire box of tissues into the "parents of the groom" pew ahead of time, I will not be caught without. And I'd best go light on the makeup too. But, who knows....I may not cry at all. Fat chance.


  1. It's the hopefulness of the moment - something those of who have lived through years of marriage would love to recapture.

  2. Dear Kate,
    I, too, cry at weddings. While preparing for Becky's -- still 13 months off -- certain moments trip the emotions. Why? I'm guessing a mixture of reasons, not the least of which is the enormity of the transition: Our children are now adults, formally creating their own nuclear families. Which means we are done with the "raising them" and are now the "older" generation.

    It may be partly the sense of uncertainty: the yet-to-be-experienced joys and sorrows, surprises, disappointments, achievements and setbacks. And, of course, our emotions are stirred by the romance of it all. Love and hope have led the two of them to choose to become one. In my case, I know mixed in with the mess is relief: I made it to this day.

    Sounds like a reasonable enough reason to reach for the Kleenex.

    I'll send wishes your way for a peacefulness that allows you to enjoy the moment and not worry about any tears.

    One suggestion: waterproof mascara.

    With hope, Wendy

  3. Me too! Completely agree! I'll be crying behind you!

  4. I say relish all of it, Kate. The smiles and the tears of the moment are all part of the experience. You are going to have the most wonderful time!

  5. As the officiant I above ALL people am not supposed to shed a tear at weddings. And I cry at everything. Terrible. Such a mushball.

    There are so many reasons to cry at a wedding we could be here all day. But crying is good, and should be expected. At my niece's wedding which I performed in July, all 10 groomsmen (young guys about 25-30) cried, each presenter cried at some point, and yes, I DID too!!!! We had tissue boxes all along the rows and up at the alter. It's happy, so prepare to cry! :-)

    PS: I can't wait to hear ALL about it. I wish you all the most beautiful celebration together. I know it will be. You can just tell.

  6. I'm pretty sure I could go to the wedding of two complete strangers and start to sob. I don't know why. Maybe because they're so young and hopeful and earnest.


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