After the thrill of wedding festivities dies down, couples often jet off to a honeymoon retreat and begin an entirely different adventure. The honeymoon may create mixed feelings, some concerning the chance to spend time alone after months of planning and a few feelings of anxiety over spending the first night together as a married couple. For many couples, the honeymoon wedding night is the first time they are intimate together or it holds a special meaning of being intimate for the first time after being married. Such significance can put pressure on a happy and natural experience.
Wedding jitters are normal, as are honeymoon and wedding night jitters. But just as wedding trends have changed through the years, so, too, have beliefs about the wedding night. Knowing about shifting trends can alleviate some of the nervousness.
According to a recent survey from Brides magazine, one in three brides plan to get into bed on the wedding night and sleep. After all of the hoopla of planning and enjoying the wedding, most people are exhausted. Others say they plan to stay up and relive moments of the day. Only about half of all couples think they will consummate the marriage on their wedding night.
Click here to read about how to pack for your honeymoon.
Taking the pressure off of the wedding night means that the rest of the honeymoon may be filled with opportunities to be amorous. But couples may still be filled with expectations for the perfect romantic retreat. Here are some things to think about.
-- Accept the fact that some wedding nights and honeymoons aren't exactly what's pictured in the movies. Don't try to live up to a Hollywood-inspired ideal or you may be let down when things don't go your way. In other words, it may rain on your beachside liaison.
-- A wedding requires a lot of work. Many people find themselves to be physically exhausted afterward. Others find they are so wound up that they cannot relax. When the mind or body is on adrenaline overload or completely wiped out, it's not the ideal situation for romantic endeavors.
-- Try to make the honeymoon stand apart from other nights by packing nice lingerie or nighttime attire so that the memories will be special. There will be plenty of other times down the road when you're an old, married couple to hop between the sheets in a ratty college T-shirt.
-- Pack some candles and mood music, or ask the resort to handle these details for you. These items can help set the scene.
-- Make sure your packing list includes special toiletries and birth control methods if you're not ready to start a family so soon after being married. The brands you prefer may be hard to acquire while at some honeymoon locations.
Origins of the term “honeymoon”
It has become tradition for married couples to jet off on a post-wedding vacation. This honeymoon is a way for the bride and groom to enjoy quiet time together and start off their married life together on an intimate level.
Although the word “honeymoon” has happy connotations today, the original meanings of the word may not be so blissful.
There are varying accounts of the evolution of the word “honeymoon,” but many believe it to be a Norse tradition deriving from the word “hjunottsmanathr.”
Northern European history describes women being abducted from their families and forced into marriage with a man from a neighboring village. This husband would take his new bride into hiding and stay there for a while until it was certain the bride's family had given up the hunt and retreated.
It was also tradition for Scandinavian couples to drink a sweet, honey-infused wine known as mead for a month after getting married. This may be where the "honey," for the sweet drink, and the "moon," for the one-month period of time, originated.
Others say “honeymoon” refers to a sarcastic quip that a marriage starts out sweet as honey, but then wanes much as the moon will each cycle