Reader Question: When to Walk Down the Aisle?


maternity wedding dress

A reader, Kristen, emailed me to say that she recently got engaged (at an unexpectedly young age of 23) and then shortly after found out she was (unexpectedly) expecting. Her question is this: What's the best solution: A pregnant bride or a new mommy bride?

And I am the wrong person to be giving advice about this.

My now-husband and I were never really "wedding-y" type people. We always said we'd rather elope and blow more money on a killer honeymoon than endure the stress of wedding planning (plus the people pleasing, party hosting, all-eyes-on-you bonanza). In fact, we always assumed we'd get married whenever we decided to have kids, just to have the same last name and important legal rights. Unromantic? Sure. But for us, we pledged our lives long before we signed a paper. For us, the "wedding" was just a legal formality to continue with what was really important to us: a marriage. When I was 8 months pregnant, I said my vows in a brown dress and then had a pretty normal day, besides making phone calls to my friends and family saying we just got hitched. We had some angry responses -- some mutterings of us being selfish -- but at the end of the day, that was our choice. And seeing how we still haven't found the time for a honeymoon after our baby was born, I'm glad we didn't wait.

I totally understand that most couples long for a dream wedding, but what do you think is the easiest/best way to handle being pregnant and engaged? Speed up the wedding and be a pregnant bride or wait until after the baby's born?

Here are some things for Kristen to think about:

  • One of our readers, Caitlin, decided to get married after her baby was born. Here's what she had to say: "We debated having a wedding before Hayden arrived, but we ended up deciding that we deserved at least one major event in our lives to be planned — and planned well. We got married in September 2009, when Hayden was one and a half years old. It was the most perfect day, and well worth the wait. We like the idea that Hayden got to be a part of it." Read Caitlin's story here.
  • On the other hand, Chaunie got married at 5 months pregnant, saying, "my pregnant belly emerging out of the bathroom before I did in my wedding night lingerie." And even though her bridal gown ripped at the last minute, she didn't have to pump on her honeymoon or achingly miss a baby back home.
  • If you're thinking about being a pregnant bride, these are some of the most gorgeous maternity wedding dresses I've seen.

What's your advice for Kristen?


Photo: Flickr/Jodie...'s