Don't read this if you're a girl

So two things have happened. You’ve asked the most important question of your life (and, happily, received the answer you were hoping for). That’s super. It really is. Marriage is an incredible expression of love and commitment that two people make to each other – promising that neither of them will ever have to worry that that enormous argument on New Years Eve is actually a relationship-ending situation because they have both promised to stick together whatever happens. I am a huge believer in that and think it’s a very righteous and awesome thing. Big ups to you.

But then, sadly, perhaps carried away in the romance of the moment, you made a monumental, unforgivable, schoolboy error. The fact that this crime against humanity is committed by enormously large numbers of seemingly sane, rational non-sociopaths every year detracts from the severity of it not even a little bit. Not at all. You allowed the idea of getting married anywhere that isn’t a beautiful, remote beach, surrounded by a maximum of eight people, to enter the conversation, and that is a truly abhorrent crime.

You’ve not only let yourself down. You’ve let your friends down, your family down and (lest we forget) your bank manager down too. What’s more, you’ve actually let your other half down. She doesn’t know it yet, but she really, actually would prefer to avoid the big white fluffy affair in favour of some ice cold fizz, sand between her toes, and only a handful of people that she really truly loves (and who truly love her). But that realisation is a long way off and, to be honest, no help to you whatsoever at this point. You’ve gone and totally ruined the whole damn thing. You’ve made your wedding planning bed and now you’re going to have to eat your flavourless, soggy cake in it.

The repercussions of this epic error of judgement will, if you’re lucky, only last from now until the day of your wedding. If you play your cards right the girl you just proposed to will return and the hideous bridezilla that you’ve just created will disappear a few days into your honeymoon (ON A BEACH). All seems stupidly clear now doesn’t it? Yeah. Yeah. Beaches. Solve. Everything.

Perhaps this is not entirely helpful, however. You’ve done it now. You don’t need recriminations and the last thing you want to do is show any sign of second thoughts (with regard to anything, including the “type” of wedding that your beloved has now set her heart on). Trust me, that will only serve to anger the beast. No. What you need now is not Joey-style “you idiot” advice but genuine pointers on how to make the best of a bad situation without ever giving any hint of thinking it is such a thing. You need a survival plan for the next few months (or however long your sins have earned you in purgatory).

And that’s what I’m here for. I promise I’ll do my best to minimise mention of that beach (but wouldn’t it be lovely?) but I can’t guarantee that discussion of the alternative will never rear it’s sunny, sandy head. Welcome to the Rookie’s Guide to Surviving Wedding Planning, brought to you by someone who knows how it goes and has deep and unwavering sympathy for all you blathering idiots.