This is the most amazing thing everyone at Slate has read on the Internet in quite some time. Enjoy this extremely practical advice, reprinted with permission from wikiHow.com.
We’ve all seen the movies where a person halts a wedding in progress in order to get back the one they truly love. In reality, though, halting a wedding from going ahead—for any reason—is a very delicate situation that can easily backfire on you and spoil a significant day. If you believe you’re justified in doing so, however, here are some suggestions for going about stopping a wedding with class and dignity.
Method 1 of 2: Before the Wedding
1. Think about why you want to break up the wedding. Ask yourself if it’s worth it.
- Don’t just think about yourself in this equation. Be honest about your belief that your beloved is not happy with the person he or she is about to marry. It is possible, after all, that they have made this choice after a great deal of soul-searching, based on their own wants, needs, and preferences. Sometimes a person will prefer a pragmatic, realistic, and reliable love choice over a deep love that they feel isn’t going to fulfill specific needs in their life.
- If you have reason to stop a wedding and it’s not in order to be with either the bride or groom romantically, make sure your view of the bride and groom is fair and justified. It can be incredibly hard, if not impossible, to really get an accurate picture of a relationship from the outside. You may object for some reason to the pairing, but ask yourself: Does your view trump their happiness? Try to see the future from their perspectives.
- Talk this out with several others before you act. The human mind works in strange ways. Sometimes what we think in our own mind is a brilliant idea at the time might just turn out to be crazy. We all have false memories—the recollection of an event, or the details of an event, that did not occur.
2. Try to deal with your concerns in private. Before considering anything as dramatic as stopping a wedding in progress, try to contact your beloved prior to the wedding day so you two can have a private moment together. Stopping a wedding is an act that will have serious consequences for many people: you, the bride and groom, their families, and the other guests.
3. Make sure you truly feel as if halting the wedding is your only option. You most likely have a history with the person about to tie the knot, and you must be certain that your odds of winning him or her back are favorable and desirable. If you’re stopping the wedding for nonromantic reasons, again take a moment to question your motives, the goal, and whether such an action would truly benefit those most closely involved.
4. Avoid dramatic scenes if possible. Direct yourself in a calm and collected manner. If possible, have a serious talk with the bride and groom beforehand.
5. Approach the bride or groom several days or even weeks before the wedding. You want to make sure you give the bride and groom time to think over what you have said and still have time to call off the wedding. In addition, weddings are expensive, and the earlier a doomed wedding is called off, the better.
6. Organize your thoughts clearly. Think about all the reasons why their wedding would be a mistake. Practice what you are planning to say in front of the mirror so that you will be as coherent and calm as possible.
7. Lay out your reasons. If you want to be with the bride or groom yourself, tell the person you were involved with that you love them. Make sure that your expectations are clear, and since things obviously didn’t work out for the two of you the last time you were together, what you are going to do to fix the problems you had before. If your reasons are nonromantic, tell them why you think it would be a mistake for them to get married to their intended. Try to address the question from their perspective, particularly if they vehemently disagree; after all, it’s their wedding, not yours.
8. Be graceful. Listen to what they have to say in reply to that. Recognize a lost cause when you see one. If you can see that the couple is truly happy, go your own way and wish them well.