Writing Your Own Vows
Most couples feel that their love is truly unique, a special bond between the two of them that no one else will ever experience in quite the same way. They're right. Writing your own vows can be an intensely moving and intimate way to create a ceremony that truly reflects the way you feel about each other.
Before you can effectively express your feelings, you'll need to identify them. It's important to talk to each other about your marriage, discussing your beliefs, dreams & expectations. Take notes on this conversation and use it as the foundation for building your own custom made vows. Once you identify the things that are the most important to you, then you can decide how best to express them.
Here are some questions to get you started:
- When and where did you first meet ?
- What was the state of your life before the two of you met ?
- At what point did you realize you were in love ? Describe the feeling...
- What inspires you about your loved one ?
- What life goals and dreams do you share ?
- What have you learned from each other ?
- What qualities make your love unique ? What qualities will keep it strong ?
- How has your view of the world changed since you fell in love ?
- What do you most look forward to about life with this person ?
- What are some special moments in your relationship, either happy or sad, humorous or profound ?
Sincerity is the key; the words should come from your heart
Incorporate your wedding guests into your vows by having them respond with their blessings and support.
Read your vows out loud, which is a surprisingly effective way to catch errors, glitches, or awkward phrasing
Additional thoughts on your commitment to marriage may be expressed in the main body of the ceremony or through the use of special poems and prayers
Don't embarrass your friends and family with details that are too intimate or lengthy.
Decide whether or not the two of you will recite the same vows or different ones.
Discuss your personal views with your officiant beforehand
When searching for the right words to use, don't forget poetry, books, or song lyrics that touch your heart. These are a great place to begin...
Also consider taking some of the typical words used in ceremonies - cherish, love, honor, support, obey - and brainstorm around them, finding your own unique words with just the right nuance of meaning. Just in case you're stuck, we've provided a Wedding Vow Thesaurus, a list of phrases and words that will get you started...
In sickness and in health
In sunshine and in shadow
For all eternity
From the deepest recesses of my heart
The full measure of my love
Built on mutual love and honesty
A symbol of my love
All the days of our lives
Dearer than life itself
I give myself to you
Light of my life
May our love flourish and grow