It can be easy to make mistakes when reciting wedding vows. People who are not familiar with public speaking might stammer or read their vows incorrectly due to nervousness. Writing vows, however, can also yield uncomfortable results.
Many couples can experience common wedding vow writing mistakes that might lead to their vows feeling less genuine or staged in some way. However, it is possible to make changes before it is too late! Here are five common problems couples encounter when writing wedding vows and some possible solutions to these errors.
Cliches can be very easy to use and are often overlooked in speech writing. Political speech writers, for example, might find cliches useful because the delivery and tone is already set. Some cliches are overused because they are true, which makes them an easy out for anyone having difficulty finding original words.
However, using cliches in wedding vow writing is a problem because they are not genuine. You might really mean to say the message these cliches convey, but in doing so you may cheapen your wedding vows.
Review your wedding vows as you write them to make sure you avoid cliches. Ask yourself these questions as you read your wedding vows aloud:
- Are there cliches included?
- If so, can you think of a better way to say your message?
Overused Metaphors and Phrases
Like cliches, overused metaphors and phrases are problematic because they are heard quite often. They are also unoriginal, which can make your wedding seem less personal. You want your significant other to feel special, and using overused metaphors and phrases will prevent this.
Prevent the use of metaphors and phrases through asking a friend to read your wedding vows when you've completed writing them.
A great way to have a close friend involved as you write your vows is to give them control of the editing process. Hand them a highlighter and have them use it whenever they see a metaphor or phrase that stands out. Ask them if they have suggestions that can help your wedding vows sound more original.
Failing to Write for Your Audience
In wedding vows, some things are better left unsaid. For example, making intimate statements to your significant other in the presence of a larger group of family members and friends might be embarrassing.
Conversely, you do not want your wedding vows to shock and awe at a smaller wedding ceremony meant for you, your significant other, your officiant and a few witnesses. Failing to think of the setting can lead to an awkward performance or an equally mortifying experience for your significant other who would rather hear such statements in private.
Think about your audience as you write your wedding vows. Are you including statements that you might not want a large group of family and friends to hear? Does your intimate wedding ceremony really require wedding vows that use bravado and drama in their delivery? Write for your significant other, but also consider the setting as you draft your wedding vows. It is not a balance that is easily accomplished, but it can be done.
Using Empty Poetry
Poetry has its time and place, but your wedding vows might not be the right situation for it. While some couples might include poetry in their wedding vows that has a deep significance to their relationship, adding poetry simply to have impressive statements can seem artificial.
Read poetry as you write your wedding vows, but do not copy it verbatim. Poetry is meant to inspire, so come up with your own loving statements that have the intensity and romance of poetry without the direct use of poetic statements.
Copying Famous Movies or Celebrity Vows
Worse than using cliches, copying the wedding vows someone else wrote can be as hackneyed as overdone wedding traditions. Copying famous movie lines or something a famous person wrote may seem like a good idea, but in reality it is not.
The solution for this one is simple: Write original wedding vows! You do not have to sound like Shakespeare, but come up with your own ideas rather than using someone else's for genuine, well thought out wedding vows. Your significant other will be grateful you took the time to think of him or her rather than about impressing those attending the wedding.