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Why Younger Generations Are Stepping Away From More Traditional Weddings

Why Younger Generations Are Stepping Away From More Traditional Weddings

The American dream used to consist of things like getting married young, buying a house, and starting a family. While those things are still important, the timing is different than it once was. It used to be normal for people to get married in their late teens and early twenties. While that still happens today, it’s becoming a less common practice.

Today’s generations are not only waiting longer to get married, but many people are stepping away from traditional weddings.

Most people still have an idea of what a “standard” wedding should look like, including everything from a white dress to a big church. But, that isn’t always the most practical setting or situation for today’s younger generations.

If you’re a Millennial or part of Gen Z, you’ve probably noticed these trends, and maybe you’re on board. If you’re thinking about getting married in the future or you’re not sure it’s right for you, you’re not alone. But, these trends aren’t coming out of nowhere. They’ve been starting to gain momentum over the last few years and may end up changing the future of the wedding industry as we know it.

So, why are these generations stepping away from more traditional weddings? What are they doing instead?

Breaking With Tradition

When you think about stereotypical wedding traditions, what comes to mind? You’re probably considering things like:

  • Bridal parties
  • Wedding cakes
  • Floral arrangements
  • White bridal gowns
  • Big, elaborate ceremonies and receptions

More people are steering away from these traditions today in favor of doing something that showcases their personalities. Some increasingly popular ideas include eloping, having a theme wedding, ditching the white dress for a different color, or even holding a “surprise ceremony” with family and friends.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Zoom weddings became increasingly popular so family members and friends all over the world could “attend” without having to leave their homes.

There are several reasons why younger generations are backing away from traditional wedding details. A lot of it has to do with affordability. If you’re planning a wedding, you know it can quickly add up. Many Millennials are in thousands of dollars of student loan debt. Others want to save up to buy their first house or start putting away for retirement. A big wedding can put those things on hold.

Even if money isn’t the issue, some younger people just want something small, intimate, and practical to cement their love forever.

For others, the break away from tradition comes from passion, like those who want to be more sustainable and eco-friendly.

Thinking Sustainably

Sustainability is at the forefront of so many minds these days. Many people want to shop sustainably, produce less waste, and live a more environmentally sound lifestyle. One way to do that if you’re getting married is to make your ceremony as sustainable as possible. Thankfully, because eco-friendly options are so prevalent these days, that’s easier to do than ever before.

Sustainability and traditional wedding traditions don’t always go together. But, there are some small changes you can make that will have a positive impact, including:

  • Using a local vendor for your food
  • Creating bouquets from in-season flowers
  • Using biodegradable dishes and decorations
  • Utilizing energy-efficient lighting and solar panels to power everything

Even the wedding bands you choose can be more eco-friendly than a traditional diamond. There are several more ethical and affordable alternatives, including colorful sapphires, morganite, rubies, and amethyst. Don’t be afraid to get creative with your wedding rings. If you’re committed to your partner, any sort of band that is meant to last a lifetime will work, will likely be more sustainable than a diamond ring.

You can also use your big day as a platform for the causes you’re passionate about. Instead of asking for gifts, request that your guests donate to your favorite charity or organization. Talk about the causes that matter to you, and make sure everyone knows the effort you put into making your day more sustainable. You never know who you might inspire to do the same.

Making a Commitment – Without Putting a Ring On It

Some members of the Millennial and Gen Z generations are choosing not to get married at all. Instead, they’re choosing to live together or just stay in a committed relationship without any legalities attached to it.

Why? Some younger couples don’t want to get married because they’re trying to ignore societal pressures. Others want to focus on their careers and not be tied down to a family right now. That doesn’t mean they don’t want committed relationships. In fact, commitment ceremonies are becoming more popular with younger generations in lieu of a traditional wedding. Some of the benefits of a commitment ceremony include:

  • Flexibility
  • Less expensive
  • Less formal
  • A great way to celebrate your love and devotion

When you choose not to get married to your partner, you can end up avoiding a lot of conflicts. You don’t have to worry about money sharing unless you want to, and you don’t even have to live with each other.

There’s also the discussion of whether to have a family together or not. When your commitment to each other isn’t legally binding, it can often feel like there’s less pressure, so your relationship can be more relaxed and you can focus on your commitment, rather than what you’re “supposed” to do as a married couple. It’s completely up to the two of you to decide how you want your relationship to work, as long as you remain committed to each other.

Though it’s not “the norm” yet, nontraditional weddings are continuing to grow in popularity. It’s a trend that is likely to continue as couples come up with new ways to show their love for each other while breaking from things of the past that they don’t want to be connected to. If you’re thinking about getting married or you want to commit to your partner, any of these ideas could be a fantastic way to break from the mold to try something different with the love of your life.

About the author:

Frankie Wallace is a freelance writer from the Pacific Northwest. She writes about a variety of topics, and spends most of her free time in her garden. 

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Submitted Exclusively to CrystalWind.ca by Frankie Wallace © 2021 crystalwind.ca

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About the author:

Frankie Wallace is a freelance writer from the Pacific Northwest. She writes about a variety of topics, and spends most of her free time in her garden. 


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