Recently, I had a client whose fiancée had a huge blowout with his church and preacher over their wedding details. This can be a really sticky subject, and she was expecting him to stand up for her and what she wanted.
Here is his email, my response follows:
I’m getting married on February 14th, Valentine’s Day. I’m 43 and this will be my second wedding. She is 40 with 2 boys, 8 and 5 years old, and this is her first wedding. We started dating in February of 2008. We’re both very involved in church, but she has her church and I have mine. They are both Christian, but different denominations. My church has better facilities and we decided to have the ceremony there, but she wanted her preacher and my preacher to both perform the ceremony, which they agreed to do. The problem is, she had had a falling out with my preacher and wants to have nothing more to do with him or my church, and have everything done at her church. We have already handed out 60 invitations to people at my church, which is about 97% of the regular attendees at my church, and everyone knows my fiancée and her boys, as they have been attending Sunday mornings with me for a few months now.
My girlfriend has tried giving me ultimatums in the past, but this one is different as it will affect not just me, but everyone who cares about us at the two churches. I told her we will have a great ceremony, and I’m sure we will. My question is, how would you deal with a woman who feels her man isn’t “sticking-up” for her and hands out a big ultimatum like this? I’m currently letting her vent her anger and frustration on me, and letting her know I am trying to understand how she feels right now. I set up an appointment to talk to my preacher this Friday, so I have a few days to try to figure out a reasonable solution.
Tying the knot,
Here is my response…
It’s great that you are taking control of the situation by getting a meeting with your preacher. I would just reassure her that you will get everything straightened out with your preacher, and that you are going to make sure she is happy and gets to have the wedding she’s always wanted. Make sure you know and understand why she is upset, and make sure you effectively communicate to her, in her language, that you really do understand where she is coming from, and are going to make things right. That’s what men do — take the big problems, and make them small and solvable. Women take the little problems and blow them up into big ones. Also keep in mind, her throwing in an ultimatum is just her expressing her feminine energy and being emotional. That’s just what women do. In her mind, this is a big deal. In yours, this is just a situation that needs to be put right. That’s why she mentions you “sticking up” for her. Women see us as their protectors. She seems to feel she is being pushed around or bullied in some way, judging by the reaction she has had to the whole situation, hence the reason why she expects you to stick up for her and make things right. Once you meet with the preacher and are telling your fiancee what happened afterwards, be sure to mention how you explained to your preacher why she felt the way she did and what she needed to feel comfortable to go forward with the ceremony with him and his church. It will communicate the details of how you were sticking up for her, and that you really listened to what her concerns were and addressed them directly. In other words, you are going to explain how you fought for her and would not take no for an answer until you got what she really wanted. Once you can go back to her with the problem resolved, she will feel comfortable again and return to her normal adoring self. She will do this because her man stood up for her and took care of business. Your actions to resolve this situation will communicate to her that you love her. That’s what matters most to her.
Try it out and let me know what happens.
Here is his follow up email after the wedding:
I’m the guy from Redding who got married on Valentines Day. We did indeed get married, and the ceremony exceeded both of our expectations. Your advice to me was spot on. You’re like ‘The Mentalist’ guy on that new television series who can read people. She was indeed feeling bullied by my Pastor, but we were able to work out a solution that was win-win for everybody.
I have already been recommending your book to both men and women. It doesn’t matter where you are in your relationship with women, just looking for your first girlfriend or already married. Every guy will benefit from your book if they read it and put your advice to the test.
Passed the test,
How awesome is that?
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From my heart to yours,
Author, Speaker, Peak Performance Coach, Entrepreneur