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Taking The Plunge: Why You Need Us

L et's be clear Marriage is great. Your girlfriend is great. But here's the thing about wedding planning: it kinda sucks. It's frivolous. It's stressful and wasteful. It makes you play along with a fake smile, bored and bitter, creating the illusion that you give a damn.

Adding to the stress, your girlfriend is wonderful and lovely and all those syrupy clichés, but she's about to become a bride...who is none of those things. You will soon be confused. You will soon be frustrated. You will soon feel that no one is on your side.

That's where we come in.

The junk that matters...and nothing more

Instead of giving you the Dos and Don'ts of choosing stationery, we'll tackle the (often controversial) stuff that matters, like what to do if her father's a real prick, how to dis-invite your co-workers, how to handle cold feet, how to finesse the murky world of ex-girlfriends, how to save cash, and where to draw the line at the bachelor party.

From making up your mind to making it down the aisle

We cover the whole gamut. If you're in a serious relationship and are thinking about taking The Plunge, you'll find advice in the Getting Engaged section. If you've already proposed, we'll give a quick primer on how life changes and your basic responsibilities. Finally, we'll help you filter out the mind-numbing details to concentrate on what really matters and give you a taste of the final week of your single life. Of course, things rarely go as planned, so we'll help you navigate the sticky situations, too.

Is it fun?

Not a chance. That's impossible. That's like hoping a certain medical procedure would suddenly, miraculously become "fun" if you read the website Colonoscopy.com. Fun's not on the menu.

What we promise

We'll be your one ally who will never, ever, mislead you with fantasies about the engagement. We'll always give it to you straight. Like you, we remain skeptical. Like you, we'd rather be doing something else. Like you, we refuse to slurp the chapel-flavored kool-aid.

We get it. Your fiancée is devouring 87 wedding planning books, magazines, and blogs that all have the chipper tone of "Yaaaayyyy, Wedding!!!" It amounts to wedding-porn. And it makes you sick. So you can just ignore it and check out, right?

Yes and no. Hopefully, she'll do the heavy lifting. But for better or worse, you also have a starring role in this sucker. So even though "real men don't plan weddings" and "real men don't need advice," in this case, you need advice. Think about it like this: if you believe that you don't need any help, then you're implying, by logical extension, that you were born with some innate inner-gift for wedding planning.

Why you need to care

Another reason to care: money. Gobs of money. In this new modern era, you might foot a good chunk of the tab. Her $3,000 table decorations are coming out of your collective hide—whether you realize it or not—even if her folks are writing the checks. (Click here for a breakdown of who pays for what.) If you slap on the blindfolds and give her the credit card, you not only ignore your investment, you set a precedent of spending the rest of your life--literally--as a yes-man. Wedding planning is to marriage what a grueling, two-year election is to the US Presidency: it tests you, it steels you, it gets you ready for office.

Let's make a pact: don't tell your bride that we're a bunch of jaded jerks...and we won't tell your buddies that you're reading up on wedding planning. Deal?

To start things off...get your basic orientation on the groom's role in the engagement.