I’m 22 years old and my boyfriend is 27. We've been dating for a year and a half and we want to get married next year. I know some people might think that for us to get married after only two years together is stupid and too soon, but the thing is, we can’t live without each other. The whole weekend - date thing is not enough time anymore for us, we want to be together every second of everyday. We don’t have any kind of problems with trust, cheating, or communication. He is really responsible, mature and family-oriented. Our only concern right now is that we don’t know what to do about the wedding. Moving in together is not what we want first because our families are very religious and it’s not really my thing either. He really wants me to be his wife and I really want him to be my husband.
However, right now we don’t have the amount of money needed to spend on a decent wedding. I have thought about eloping, but I have always dreamed of a big wedding. We have also thought about getting a small loan, but then I would just feel guilty about how we spent the money. We might be able to have that kind of money in a few years but we don’t want to wait any longer. My parents and his parents can’t really help much financially so DearSugar, please help me out, I need some input from some other people besides my family and friends because they have me so confused. — I Already Do Dana
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Dear I Already Do Dana —
It sounds like you and your boyfriend have already made up your minds about wanting to get married, so don't listen to what other people say. Some couples elope and get married the same weekend they met, and stay married forever, and then others wait until they know each other inside and out but still get divorced 35 years later. There is no magical potion to make a union work, you just need to follow your heart and take a chance.
Weddings do cost a lot of money, you're right about that, so you have to make a decision here. Is the wedding day itself more important to you than the marriage itself or is not waiting any longer what really matters to you? Once you answer that question, you will know what to do.
If you choose to quietly get married, say in city hall, you can always wait to have your reception when you feel more financially secure. If you already know that taking out a loan in order to have your dream wedding will make you feel guilty, don't do it. If you're worried about how you're going to pay back the money, you won't enjoy your wedding.
I think the best thing to do is to sit down with your boyfriend, talk about what's important to each of you, write out a pro and con list, and go from there. Good luck to you in whatever you choose.