Why I'm putting down the wedding clickbait
You can’t tell me what to do, wedding media — You’re not my real dad!
Photo by Carl Heyerdahl

It’s not too long now until the love of my life and I get married and promise to tolerate one another until one of us dies, and I have reached the conclusion that I need to stop reading wedding clickbait. They’re making anything other than a courthouse wedding seem ill-advised.

Maybe that’s a little dramatic.

Honestly, wedding planning has been going roughly how I expected it to go. I was prepared to answer questions about why I’m not changing my last name, why I’m shirking the family tradition of elopement, why I’m not worried about getting married young.

I was down to make decisions about food and drinks and flowers. I was ready to tell people that no, we are not taking requests for the playlist because this party is not about YOUR awful taste in music, it is about MY and MY FUTURE SPOUSE’S awful taste in music.

You know that I wasn’t ready for?

“What’s your wedding hashtag going to be?”

I didn’t realize that I had to name my wedding. I thought names were reserved for offspring and pets and your quirky eighteen-year-old car. I guess I should’ve figured it out, as everyone I know who has gotten married in the past year has had a hashtag. When I don’t think about it too hard, it’s a pretty charming way to integrate technology into a wedding without feeling like Instagram is stealing your spotlight because, hello, Instagram is your spotlight.

But the spouse and I have last names which will remain separate. It would be weird to just use one of our names, and there’s not a lot of cute things you can do with both Ping and Miller.

When the spouse and I first got engaged, my little brother said, “Eva, please don’t change your last name to Miller. I’d never be able to find you on the Internet among the swarms of old ladies named Eva Miller.” And I was like, no worries, I’ll either hyphenate or leave Ping alone. And he said, “Okay… but if you hyphenate, put Ping first, because it ends in an -ing, and if it goes last then it sounds like a verb if you say it fast, and I don’t know what malurping is but it doesn’t sound good and everyone will bully your kids.” I thought that was a pretty fair assessment of the situation.

Back to the hashtag drawing board, I guess…

“What’s going to be on your Snapchat filter?”

Why didn’t Pinterest prepare me for this question? Am I supposed to buy a Snapchat filter? It could say, “L & E 5Ever” and have a cute string of hipster lights over the top, and everyone would be like HASHTAG MALURPING when they post their Snaps to Instagram and then would we ever trend. Top 100 Weddings of the Year.

A Snapchat filter. Is the ambiance provided by the fireside and the flowers not enough? We have to have a geofilter? Okay. Fine. We’ll get a geofilter, you whack-a-doodle Millennials.

…watch me be the only person using the filter.

“You should get a drone photographer.”

Is this what the kids are doing these days? Getting robots to fly around their wedding taking pictures? That’s actually kind of clutch, but I’m not even sure I can afford a human photographer, let alone a human-flying-a-drone-photographer.

Now, if someone has a Roomba I could borrow, maybe I could tape a camera to it and then it could roll around and snap sweet pics. You’ve heard of DJ Roomba. Get ready for Wedding Photographer Roomba.

“Put a GoPro in your bouquet. It’ll be great.”

What if I forget it’s there and take it with me to the bathroom, and then we’ve got video of me trying to take care of business around my skirts (which would be entertaining, probably, but inappropriate for the occasion. I understand social boundaries.).

“You could 3D print your cake holder!”

Okay, yes, that I could do. Or… I could take that same amount of money and buy one at the store.

Then I wouldn’t have to think about polymers. I just don’t want to think about polymers right now!

“Have you thought about having an unplugged wedding?”

You mean that thing where no one is allowed to have their phone or tablet or ANY DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY AT ALL GET THAT APPLE WATCH OUT OF MY FACE KAREN at my wedding?

Because yes, I have considered that. Why do you ask?

I’m mostly kidding.

I’ve been told, “People will drive you crazy. Just do you!” And I’ve tried to take this to heart. But I still can’t help but wish they’d quit driving me crazy and instead drive me to somewhere more useful, like to get ice cream or something.

Wedding planning is already such a stressful endeavor. Saturating myself with unsolicited advice by continuing to click on the Facebook-suggested listicles, harmless though it may seem, is adding to that stress. I’ve upped the ante and the anxiety by conning myself into the idea that I need all of the gadgets and what’s-its to have a modern, exciting wedding, as if getting married and stuffing myself with tacos isn’t thrilling enough. I’ve never in my life been overwhelmed by the thought of a GoPro I don’t even own. Why is this happening?

I’m doing it to myself, and, according to the wisdom of Radiohead, “that’s why it really hurts.”

Giving up the clickbait is an act of self-care. I’m giving up the forums, the hot takes, and the “27 Wedding Trends that Need to Die” thinkpieces. I’m unfollowing all of the Pinterest boards called “Wedding Must-Haves” and settling into the idea that the only thing my wedding must have is me and my spouse, and maybe a few people who love us, tucked into a comfortable backyard reception, our stomachs bursting with dessert.

See y’all at the hashtag MillerPingWingDing.

Editor’s note: Yep, I unironically linked a lot of related articles in there with you are TOTALLY ALLOWED TO IGNORE, especially after you read this piece. What are your thoughts on the pressure of wedding trends?

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