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You Asked: Is Our Anniversary Ruined?

Dear Sugar,

My fourth wedding anniversary is coming up at the end of this month. Every year, my husband and I try to take a vacation around this holiday. The problem is I plan the trip every year but have a lot going on with work right now and the stress of planning is just too overwhelming. I conveyed this to my husband and he said he would take on the task. I was a little apprehensive at first, maybe due to my own issues with control, but I got over it and agreed. Well here is the problem; we are now two weeks away from our anniversary and he has yet to plan anything! Last night, we looked online at some places within driving distance, but truth be told, I am a little upset that he didn't make more of an effort to plan something special. I fear that now, I will have to come up with something last minute. Why is it so hard to get a man to make plans?! — Disappointed Dina

To see DearSugar's answer,


Dear Disappointed Dina,

I don't need to tell you that men are a different breed than women, and unfortunately, many men lack the planning gene. Of course it's disappointing that your husband hasn't already booked a wonderfully romantic getaway, but could he be surprising you with something? Is he the type to fake you out, lead you to believe that he didn't plan anything, all the while having something amazing up his sleeve? If that's just wishful thinking, your anniversary trip can still be great even if it is planned last minute.

Since you're obviously frustrated, tell your husband that you're upset that he didn't put forth more of an effort. If you hold onto your anger, it could turn into resentment rather quickly, so I suggest nipping it in the bud ASAP. Once you have that off your chest, take an hour or two each night to research your options and go from there. Lately it feels like there aren't enough hours in the day for anyone, so if you have to push out your trip by a week or two, do it if it means going someplace really special. In other words, don't just settle on a destination you can drive to if you usually use this vacation time to jetset somewhere unique. If you take the last-minute route, be sure to search the Internet for deals — many times traveling last-minute pays off. Good luck and happy anniversary!


Join The Conversation
Fallen85 Fallen85 8 years
Lickety split with all due respect this has nothing to do with a truly tragic event happening in their lives which caused him to forget their anniversary... this is a much simpler situation where he said he would do something and then didnt. Simple. Obviously at this point in your relationship if your husband dropped the ball on something it could be easily forgiven because you both realize there's so much more important things in life but for this new young couple... they are still working out the kinks and her husband should start realizing that if he agrees to do something he should do it no matter ow much effort it causes him to put in. See what I mean?
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
i think that you have every right to be a bit frustrated with your man since he said that he would take it on but i think that it's something that i've come to expect from men - they say that they will do it and they don't. i figure that you should probably just mention to him that you're disappointed that he said htat he would do it and he didn't..and then go to mor and see what you can find in last minute deals to do. you'd be surprised what's still out there that won't break the bank. a LOT of hotels are trying to get business this time of year and if you look online, you'll find GREAT rates and plenty of availability.
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 8 years
You still have two weeks so either express to him that you want to do something more special than a day trip or plan it yourself. You aren't going to get what you want by pretending that nothing is wrong and letting him plan some crappy trip that you'll throw in his face for years to come.
RockAndRepublic RockAndRepublic 8 years
How hard can it be to plan a trip?
lickety-split lickety-split 8 years
i've been married for 11 years. during that time our only son died and our oldest daughter developed severe autism. there were 2 years in there where we both FORGOT our anniversary because of the grief and burdens in our lives. my husband and i got through real problems; trust me, a missed vacation isn't diddly squat in a real marriage. oh, and we don't have tv. we have "higher standards" for our free time.
Fallen85 Fallen85 8 years
so lickety split, you're saying that if a guy isnt a cheater, a gambler, a drug addict or abusive then he should be absolved of all of his mistakes and shortcomings? If your boyfriend told you he was going to pick you up from work when it was pouring rain out and then he never showed up or called with enough notice for you to call someone else so you ended up having to walk in the rain; then you found out he was just sitting at home watching The Simpsons and just didnt feel like coming to get you, you wouldn't be upset with him just because he doesnt do drugs? Sounds a little ridiculous to me, doesnt it? He's an adult, he should take responsibilities for his actions (or inactions) and he should have enough respect for you to talk to you about his comfort levels! Just like he should have taken the initiative to get some help in completing the task he told his wife he would complete. I think you need to get higher standards or you will be tromped all over by the men in your life.
lickety-split lickety-split 8 years
honestly, anyone this upset about 1 thing in their marriage; this is probably your last anniversary. save the money on the vacation for your divorce attorney and then look for a robot who will spit out EXACTLY what you program it to do rather than a living breathing person for that next relationship. this is like a speck of nothingness on the problem scale. he didn't cheat, didn't gamble away their savings, isn't a drug addict, isn't abusive, he JUST didn't plan a vacation for THIS EXACT WEEKEND. if you try counseling you might rehearse that speech to the therapist about why you are so up in arms. she'll say "so you feel like he didn't take you needs seriously this time. what else?" and your response will be "um............." yeah. your anniversary is just one day in your marriage, try and focus on the other 1,460 days you've had with him.
bluestar bluestar 8 years
I'm with Fallen. A man needs help planning a trip? Then he should call his mom or sister and ask for it. He can put a little effort into it, especially since he offered in the first place. If he couldn't do it, then he shouldn't have offered.
cubadog cubadog 8 years
I personally think people on here are just sick of all the boo-hoo people that are on here lately. I don't think people are being "mean" intentionally if you think about what is going on in the world when so many families are losing their homes and jobs put it in perspective. Like I said at least you get to get away for an extended period of time. I would hope she knew he was like this when they got married and she admitted to being a control freak. How long does it really take to plan a trip? They both should have sat down together and planned their vacation together. Really, you both didn't have an hour out your day to plan a trip on-line? I honestly don't want my BF planning my vacation without my imput. I can just imagine where we would end-up if I allowed him to plan the whole thing on his own.
Sun_Sun Sun_Sun 8 years
i think the problem here is not that they're not going somewhere fancy or exotic, but the fact that he took responsibility for something important and didnt come thru. she'd have to be a saint to not be a little resentful when they're celebrating at home rather than, say hawaii or cabo! if they couldnt afford it or didnt have time is one thing, but to miss out on it due to lack of responsibility is just annoying.
SuprGr9214 SuprGr9214 8 years
Jeez, people are really getting heated about this. Since most people here seem to be more able to relate to Disappointed then her husband re: planning, maybe I can help. My husband is definitely the planner in our relationship. He likes to have concrete plans laid out days or weeks in advance, and this is for an average Friday or Saturday night, not just for vacation magnitude activities. We could not be anymore different. I enjoy the spontaneity of doing things last minute and I genuinely do not understand why he needs everything planned out way in advance. Having to plan things way in advance stresses me out and makes me feel boxed in (wedding planning was hell for me, and we did the destination thing where all I had to do was show up in a dress and everything was taken care of for me). I find that things usually work themselves out when I kind of just go with the flow. If I'm planning a vacation for the two of us, I usually do wait until the last minute to finalize anything. This doesn't mean that when I plan something it means any less to me then it does to him. We just go about it very differently. It doesn't mean that I'm not thinking about it, because I am; probably more then he would, because not finalizing anything weeks in advance allows you more time to think about what you'd really like to do and find a way to make it happen.
N-e-e-c-a-l-l-e N-e-e-c-a-l-l-e 8 years
N-e-e-c-a-l-l-e N-e-e-c-a-l-l-e 8 years
Ditto to CYL and Fallen. He dropped the ball period. Reliabilitly and accountability are hugely important in a relationship IMO and I would personally take him not putting effot into planning the trip as a reflection of his priorities and where our relationship falls on the list. Regardless of whether its an actual reflection of his priorites thats how I would take it.
CYL CYL 8 years
I agree with Fallen. Why are women so mean to each other? There is no need to call her materalistic. If there relationships expectations are a trip on anniversary than that is what it is. It was agreed upon by her husband. Its not like they can't afford it and threw a hissy fit because her hubsand wouldn't take her to Paris to the most expensive hostel. Sheesh! He dropped the ball...but I would reserve telling him he fucked up until he actually does. Give him the opportunity to fail or to succeed and just let him do his thing. If you swoop in and take it from him...he's not going to learn how to plan.
Fallen85 Fallen85 8 years
So your answer is to settle? Well, I dont know about the OP but I dont settle and I expect that when my man says he'll do something.. he does it. But if you're happy to settle for a quick dinner compared to a annual vacation because your man was too lazy to get off his a$$ and pick up the phone then to each their own.
Amandaletta Amandaletta 8 years
Wow the claws are out. My goodness. This is my solution to the problem this woman and her husband are having. This is my answer to mine and my friends anniversary woes as well: Go out to a fancy restaurant, call it a day and get the (insert expletive here) over it.
Fallen85 Fallen85 8 years
Amandaletta, plannig this isnt a 'favour' for her, its a vacation to celebrate their life together. It wasnt 'nice of him' to agree to plan it, it is his vacation too and therefore partly his responsibility. And as for her being 'disappointed no matter how hard he tries'... yea I could understand you saying that IF HE'D ACTUALLY TRIED. Her husband didnt do anything. Two weeks to go and she found out he had nothing planned so they went on the computer and tried to plan something last minute. The chances of him having planned something huge to suprise her with are slim to none and if he has then she'll eat her words but in most cases... this is just him being lazy and I am shocked that all you ladies are pushing the blame on her for expecting her husband to actually put some effort in.
Amandaletta Amandaletta 8 years
You asked him to do you a favor because you are swamped with work. He agreed, which was very nice of him especially if he has never planned the vacation before. He could be like my boyfriend and say "No" which you would probably not have been too happy about either. But it almost sounds like you expected failure from the start, in which case you're going to be disappointed no matter how hard he tries. And maybe, just maybe he's got something, not something like whisking you away to Paris but he may have something. Taking a vacation every anniversary just seems excessive. If it were your 10 or even the 5 year anniversary then I'd say go balls out, but it's 4 years. Make the 5th anniversary even more amazing if you don't do something awesome for the 4th. I'd say to remember that he is supposed to be doing you a favor and no matter what happens or how the day goes, you should be grateful that you're doing anything at all. When my boyfriend does plan things, he waits until the last minute but I try not to get on his back about because then he gets frustrated and tells me to do it, but no matter how much he procrastinates everything always works out just fine and I'm happy and he's happy. Enjoy yourself no matter what happens and next time either do the planning yourself or include him more in your planning so he can do better next time. Sometimes the men just need a little help from us.
vmruby vmruby 8 years
Ditto to what Fallen85 said. I couldn't agree with you more.....
Fallen85 Fallen85 8 years
stumbler, It's unfair that she's upset because her husband said he was going to do something and then didnt even try??? Why are all these ladies automatically forgiving the husband just because he's a man and "men dont really plan"? Bottom line is he said he was going to do something and then didnt. She has a right to be a little pissed off! If he didnt want to do it he should have said from the beginning 'I dont feel comfortable planning this trip' or he could have talked to her a month ago and said that he needs some help! Instead, he just didnt go ANYTHING and two weeks until their anniversary she has to scramble to pull something together! He could have hired a Travel Agent for goodness sakes! After four years he should be able to communicate with his wife and figure out how to plan a vacation. His wife didnt say she didnt want to know anything about it, she just didnt want to have to plan everything this year because she was so slammed at work. You ladies who keep pushing the blame on the wife because she expected her husband to do what he said he would do are dead wrong. Seriously. He's a grown ass man.
stumbler02 stumbler02 8 years
Don't hold this against your husband. That's really unfair. You knew in advance that you were the planner, and that he was not. Then you set him up for failure by expecting him to plan. Now you're complaining that he acted in a completely predictable manner? I think if you got mad at him for not planning, it would be passive aggressive. Your real issue with him here is that you would like him to show affection through planning, but you know that he is not that type of person. Instead of telling him directly to change into the person you would like him to be, you challenged him to plan something you knew you would never be satisfied with, so his shortcomings would be on display and you could stew about it. Cut it out. In the future, just talk to him directly about your concerns!
cubadog cubadog 8 years
I really don't feel sorry for you it sounds like you knew your husband was a procrastinator and deep down you knew he wouldn't get it together until the last minute. Men are terrible at making plans. At least you get to take a vacation this year my big trip to Italy is on hold because I am probably going to lose my job yeah it sucks but I will get there someday. It shouldn't matter where you are as long as you are together. Get over it!
Fallen85 Fallen85 8 years
missjules you're obviously confused. She's not whining about now being able to go somewhere expensive and exotic, she's upset because her husband said he would plan the vacation this year and he dropped the ball. Now, she's still stressed out and she has even less time to plan the trip because her husband didnt do what he said he was going to. Put it this way, if you could afford to go to Paris for your anniversary but didnt have the time to plan it and your boyfriend said he would and then in the end you two had to end up going to... say... Red Deer, Alberta because he didnt put any effort in then wouldnt you be a little upset? I know I would.
lickety-split lickety-split 8 years
i agree with missjules5x.
N-e-e-c-a-l-l-e N-e-e-c-a-l-l-e 8 years
Jules I think the poster is more upset because he didn't take the time to plan anything yet and now its left to the last minute. If it were me, I would be hurt if I trusted my bf or husband with planning something that we traditionally do every year and he didn't take the time or put forth the effort to do so.
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