BlogThe Wedding That Didn’t Happen

August 22, 2022by Frank Love0

In my previous blog “Are You Glad I’m Home?” we focused on questions to ask ourselves to help create the loving relationships that we want. In today’s blog post, I share my own disappointing experience when I did not ask enough questions of myself (or my partner) to help create a memorable experience.

My first wife and I wed in May of 1999.  Three months (or so) after our first child was born.  I was 26 and she had just turned 27.  It was a small wedding.  Probably as small as one gets.  It was my subsequent wife, our daughter, the priest, the witness and me.  That’s it.  This celebration was one of several opportunities over the course of the marriage where I could have done a better job.

Over the years that we dated, one of the elements that stood out (to me now, not then) about her, was how she went to all of the weddings of the people in her circle.  These circles were not all the same level of closeness.  But they were members of her circle nonetheless.  She is in a sorority, and she had substantive, though not equal, relationships with the 20 plus young women that she came into the sorority with and that she subsequently brought into the sorority afterwards.  Between those groups, if someone got married she was there and so was I.  To most on-looking third parties, there were certainly enough hints available to me to surmise that weddings were important to her.  I can’t say that I was missing those hints.  However, what I absolutely missed was how important her wedding would be to her and us.

We dated for about three years before our daughter was born.  We had fun.  We spent a lot of time together.  We traveled together.  We met each other’s friends and families.  When it became clear that we wanted to move toward a more permanent connection – marriage – we sat down and discussed what our family life would be like.  She was raised as a Christian, but I never knew her to associate with the faith at all.  I never saw or knew of her going to church, either.  I was raised as an Akan who practices the spiritual traditions rooted in  Ghana, West Africa.

We agreed that we would shape our family around Akan culture, with respect to her family traditions.     As time passed and our wedding conversations continued, we could not come to an agreement of what a ceremony would look like.  She wanted a ceremony that would have mixed elements of her family transition.  I wanted a completely Akan ceremony – or as close to no ceremony at all as we could muster.  The romance associated with engagements and weddings was completely lost on me.  I had no interest in these outward expressions of romance, or to conforming to any norms around wedding ceremonies.   White dresses? Phooey!  Bridesmaids and groomsmen were the furthest thing from a desire that I wanted anything to do with.  “Wanna get married?”, on a drive home from work was my style.

Neither of us was willing to budge from our concepts around what a wedding would look like.  However, my rigidity was the most damaging.  The conversation continuously stalled, which was no big deal while dating.  However, she became pregnant with our daughter, and given that we both intended to marry each other and we wanted to be married before the baby arrived, stalling was no longer a viable option.  The day came when we were schedule to get married, and on our way to the priest, a little girl decided to enter the world.  I was one of the greatest days of my life (the other was attending the Million Man March).  Baby-girl was two months premature and was the most beautiful being that I ever set my eyes on.  We were parents now, but not married.

Three months later the ceremony happened, but it wasn’t special for either of us.  We were just married.  In fact, I doubt that there is one picture that exists from that ceremony.  My goal had been met but her’s hadn’t, and I was alright with that.  We could have had another ceremony that was pretty and that nurtured the dreams that most little girls have for themselves, but I wasn’t motivated to do so, and she seemed to have given up on those dreams.

Decades and a divorce later, I reflect on that situation and wish that I would have handled it in a much better manner.  I robbed her of something that she wanted.  That she deserved.  I wish I would have given her the white wedding with the bridesmaids.  The reception.  The party.  I’m sorry.  This beginning certainly did not help with how we dealt with each other over the course of our marriage, and I carry a great deal of that with me.  

Brothers, if my story resonates with you at all, please consider my story and allow yourself to be led by your heart.  Somewhere between my passive-aggressiveness and my all-out aggressiveness, I dropped the ball.  My ex-wife didn’t want or advocate for an expensive lavish ceremony, but she did want a ceremony where she would be happy and joyous.  She wanted her day with family, girlfriends and on-lookers … and she deserved it.  Your lady probably does too.  Consider giving it to her.  This is certainly a way to be loving.

Keep rising,

Frank Love

In my next blog post, “The Superpower of Support, I will delve into the role of unconditional support in maintaiing our loving relationships.

Watch Frank Love’s presentation “The Act of Caring.”


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Each week, Frank Love hosts Zoom support group meetings that assist women and men as we work to create a loving culture in our relationships. Calls occur from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. EST and can be accessed by visiting FrankWeeklyCall.com.


  • Tuesdays—Black Women: Creating a Loving Culture in Our Relationships
  • ThursdaysBlack Men: Creating a Loving Culture in Our Relationships


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Frank Love coaches individuals toward creating a loving culture in their family. He is also the author of Relationship Conversations You Don’t Want to Have (But Should Anyway) and 25 Ways to Be Loving. To schedule a free consultation, contact Frank at Frank@FrankLove.com.

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