It’s only natural that after all the excitement of your wedding day, you might feel a bit down once it’s all over. It’s called the ‘post-wedding blues’ and it’s a very real thing.
We asked some mental health experts how to recognise and handle the post-wedding blues so you can move forward and start to enjoy your life as newlyweds.
Read more: How to stay calm whilst wedding planning
“Wedding days go by in a flash. Potentially years of planning, and suddenly your end goal is achieved,” says Lee Chambers, psychologist and well-being consultant, “It is no surprise to feel emptiness and loneliness after an event which builds so much anticipation, excitement and pressure.”
“A wedding day is one of the most special days of your life, requiring lots of planning to make sure your big day is everything you ever imagined,” explains Pablo Vandenabeele, Mental Health Clinic Director at Bupa UK.
“After months full of fun and excitement from celebrating your engagement, throwing a hen party, to planning your wedding day it is no surprise that many brides and grooms suffer from post-wedding blues. You may feel a little lost and find it hard to settle back into normalcy.”
Here are some helpful ways to manage how you feel after your wedding day…
Managing the Post-Wedding Blues
1. Plan Your Wedding Together
How you feel after your wedding can be key in managing how you feel after the big day too, Lee explains: “If you are prepared and organised, you won’t be anxious about it constantly before the big day. By keeping a sense of normality, you can address any tensions in your relationship as these can be amplified after the anticipation has passed.”
2. Prepare For Post-Wedding Life
Make sure you have stuff to look forward to after your wedding day too. “It’s a good idea to plan for things you can do after your wedding day and enjoy your time together as newlyweds,” suggests Pablo. “This could be planning your dream honeymoon together, so that you have time to settle into married life and have a trip of a lifetime to look forward to. Re-connecting with friends is also a great way to uplift your mood.”
Read more: Your first year of marriage bucket list
3. Remember the Best Bits
It can be easy for your emotions to become overwhelming, especially if there was something on your wedding day that didn’t go to plan or you weren’t happy about. Focus on the happy details and the best bits when you’re feeling low.
“We all want the perfect wedding day, but in all truth there is no such thing,” says Lee. “Acceptance and taking a moment to reflect are powerful in the post-wedding phase as you can relive the joy and passion of the day when your feeling a little low.”
4. Be Mindful
“Mindfulness is the practice of living in the present and will allow you to take time to be proud for all that you have accomplished over the past few months. Think about what you’ve achieved: you’ve successfully planned one of the biggest days in your life and now have the rest of your life to look forward to with your partner by your side,” explains Pablo.
“Mindfulness can be a real mood-booster; it can increase your feelings of happiness, a sense of wellbeing and can help you concentrate. By linking your mindfulness behaviour to something that you already do, such as making a morning coffee, you’re more likely to notice how it feels and then later reflect on any benefits from it.”
5. Accept That It’s Normal to Feel Sad
“With such a massive life milestone, you might feel like you have dropped from emotional heights and will feel exhausted psychologically,” says Lee. “Prepare for this before your wedding and it will be so much easier. Marriage is a change and on the other side is a new normal to get used to.”
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6. Take Time to Settle
With that in mind, it’s important that you take the time you need to get used to your new life, especially if planning your wedding took up a lot of your time.
“Your wedding day is a life changing moment, and often with change comes a mix of emotions which can cause you to feel overwhelmed. Focus on creating new habits for your new life as a married couple. why not plan a weekly date night, or take up a new hobby together?” Suggests Pablo
7. Make Time for Self-Care
It’s so important to look after yourself, especially if you’re feeling low. “Use self-care to bolster yourself,” says Lee. “Eat well, make sure you sleep optimally, take time to mediate, exercise and consider a new hobby or adventure.”
Pablo also recommends taking the time to start a new hobby: “Planning a wedding often takes up a lot of free time. Once your wedding is over there may be a sense of loss in terms of what to do with all this free time you now have on your hands. Taking up a new hobby is a great way to bring excitement into your life by doing something you love. This could be baking, running or writing – whatever you enjoy, now’s the time to explore it.”
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8. Communicate With Your Spouse
“Don’t be embarrassed to tell your partner how you’re feeling: a problem shared is a problem halved! You might find they’re experiencing the same feelings and you can help each other to come up with ways to boost your moods.
“Communication is key to any healthy relationship, so it’s important to listen to your partner and open-up about how you’re feeling so you both feel supported,” advises Pablo.
9. Time Your Honeymoon Wisely
If you know you’re going to find adapting to not planning your wedding difficult, make sure you give yourself something new to look forward to. “With the wedding day gone, we can feel a void, a gap that causes emptiness. Fill that gap with a new milestone to move towards,” recommends Lee.
“Feeling progression makes us happy, as does having a target. You could use your honeymoon to have a big thing to look forward to in the future, or use it to soften the landing after the wedding. Think about what would work best for you!”
If you’ve noticed changes to the way you think or feel over the past few weeks after your wedding, it’s really important to seek support. Speaking to your doctor about how you’re feeling can help.
If you’re looking for ways to improve your well-being, why not read our guide to getting fit and healthy?