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Relationship Services Whakawhanaungatanga has put together some tips and ideas to help minimise stresses of weddings to ensure the couple and all involved have a special day.
• Make it an event you will both enjoy: make plans and decisions as a team.
• Include both families in the plans. Invite them to take part in ways that suit you. Do this early so they don't build up other expectations. Make them part of your team: it's a good basis for ongoing family relationships.
• Work out a budget together: overspending on the wedding doesn't help any relationship.
• Keep talking to each other about how you're both feeling, how much you've achieved, and what's still to do.
• When differences start to develop be clear about your partner's concerns. Really listen to them, and work out how you can resolve things together.
• Take time out together, away from the wedding plans. Relax and enjoy each other's company, and remember why you have chosen to marry this special person.
• Get plenty of rest. You don't have to do everything yourself. Ask for and accept offers of help.
• Keep a sense of perspective: it's easy to become stressed over small details and lose sight of what the day is about. If the pressure is starting to build and you find it's hard to get co-operation going, talk to a Relationship Services counsellor about it before things get too bad.
Relationship Services is New Zealand's largest provider of professional counselling and relationship education, assisting more than 35,000 people each year and working in over 70 communities throughout the country.
For more information visit the website www.relate.org.nz, or call 0800 RELATE.