Our civil partnership- FEBRUARY 2020!

princessmaire1princessmaire1 Posts: 43 New bride
edited 1 February in Your planning threads

I’ve read enough of these threads that i should know how it works  but our story is a little unconventional so I’ll explain first before going into how we met etc.

Our plans 

Some of you may have seen that on 2 October Theresa May announced that the law regarding opposite sex couples having civil partnerships would change following a successful court case brought this summer. A lot of couples- us included- celebrated madly at this. My fiancé (P) was adamant that he never wanted to get married as his parents’ acrimonious marriage breakup when he was a very young child scarred him. My dad is in poor health and I’m very much a daddy’s girl- I had really wanted him to walk me down the aisle but given P’s flat refusal to ever commit I had become resigned to the fact I would be Miss forever and never get married 

However when I saw the result of this case back in the summer I mentioned it to P and I was shocked when he actually seemed quite interested. When the decision was announced on the 2nd, we talked it over and decided we would go for it as soon as the law was changed. 

However the issue we have is there is no timescale  the bill which will enable the law to be changed is about to have its third reading in the House of Commons after which it needs to have three readings in the House Of Lords. We are hoping that things move very soon as we want to get it done ASAP due to dads health so we’re keeping fingers crossed. 

I have however started to make plans....


  • How we met

    We have been together 11 years and 361 days! (It’s our anniversary this weekend) 

    Its going to sound really odd and twee how we met in these the days of smartphones and internet dating 

    I was living in Nottingham at the time and I had been single for what felt like forever (actually only 2 years though) I had had a hard time getting over my ex but I had limited opportunities to get out and meet anyone- money was tight and I was suffering from quite bad depression which meant I had little enthusiasm in doing so. 

    One morning as I got on the tram to work I realised I had forgotten my cross-stitch that I usually did on the long tram journey so I picked up the Metro paper instead. As I flicked through my eyes landed on the dating personals page and an advert caught my eye. I remember thinking he sounded just my type but me being as indecisive as I was, I decided to take the paper with me and think about it. i agonised over whether To ring the number and leave a message the whole day- i kept going back and re-reading it but when I got home from work I gave myself a good talking to and rang and left a message. 

    He rang back a couple of days later and we arranged a date. I got horrendously drunk and managed to fall asleep on him when we went to see a film- fortunately he saw the funny side though! Three months later I moved in with him when the dive I was living in was compulsorily purchased- I was supposed to be staying there temporarily while I found somewhere to live but 11.5 years later I’m still here 

  • The proposal 

    I would love to say there was a big grand proposal but sadly there wasn’t 

    It was a normal Tuesday morning- I was on the sofa in my pyjamas and P was sat in the armchair opposite in his work uniform, eating his lunch (just a bit of background here- I have fibromyalgia which leaves me in constant pain and constantly exhausted, I work part time evenings but I’m often in my pyjamas until mid afternoon in order to conserve my energy to prepare for and go to work) My iPad was on the floor and it beeped with a news headline- which was the announcement about the law would be changed to allow civil partnerships for opposite sex couples. 

    So I said to him ‘come on then, are we going to do it?’ He tried some very feeble objections (but most importantly- if he outright doesn’t want to do something, he doesn’t try to object- it’s a straight and firm no and no further conversation- if he’s open to being persuaded he always slightly feebly objects and then gives in so this was a very good sign) but after I disproved all his objections he said ‘go on then‘ He Had bought me a Claddagh ring when we were in Dublin (we both have Irish families) and I had worn it as a sign of commitment, but I had stopped wearing it as I said it meant nothing. I went and fetched it and he put it on my finger- we agreed to call the waiting period an engagement (having read stories from other couples some are doing this, some aren’t) and I then started the mammoth task of telling friends and family. It was very special that my dad was the first person I was able to tell- I think he was relieved! Although he admitted he doesn’t understand civil partnerships he said he was glad that P was finally making a commitment to me. 

    The ring

    Intially we weren’t going to bother and I was just going to wear my Claddagh ring, it was my birthday the following week and when he went to buy me a card I happened to look in the window of the jewellery shop opposite. He generally gives me cash for my birthday but I noticed they were having a 50% off sale on their diamond rings. I spotted the only one in budget on the amount he was going to give me, and noticed it was really unusual. I waited patiently for him to come out of the card shop, dragged him into the jeweller’s and came out ten minutes later with this image

  • So I’ve been a little bit quiet- things have started to happen though!

    The bill that contains the clause about equal civil partnerships had its third reading in the House of Commons yesterday. The MP who proposed it had entered a clause which said that after the bill is passed there should be a maximum six month period before the first opposite sex CP’s were possible so we’re looking at Autumn 2019! So I’ve started some serious planning- we’re hoping to have decisions made so when we can book the ceremony we can just set the ball rolling!

    ive had a disaster with my engagement ring also! Due to my fibromyalgia my hands tend to swell and my hand swelled so much that I had to hastily take my ring off then it wouldn’t go back on :( so after some arguing with H Samuel they refunded the original ring and I have a new one! I love this one so much and it’s a far better fit.

    My first wedding related thing I have is my shoes. These are Irregular Choice ‘Sparkle’ flats. They’re actually an Xmas pressie from P- I graduate in January and I will be wearing them then- I will be wrapping them up carefully and putting them away then though! I was adamant I wanted IC’s- I had a pair when I graduated from my undergrad degree last year and I absolutely love them- hence having them for both my graduation and our CP ceremony. The pic doesn’t do them justice- they have flashing lights on them which the more you move the more and brighter they flash! I’m hoping to have a tea length dress so my feet will be on show and shining away! imageimage

  • The date- Cant set a firm date yet but I’m hoping for 19 October 2019. Our anniversary is on the 21st and my birthday on the 11th so that would be amazing. My whole family‘s wedding anniversaries are in the latter months of the year (November for my mum and dad and brother and sister in law and December for my sister and brother in law) so I would love to keep in line with them if I could. 

    The venue- This will depend on availability and budget. Because we’ll be doing it at as short notice as we can get away with, I’m sort of resigned to it being a registry office ceremony. P was very picky and out of all of the registry offices in the area he only likes 1- Loughborough. However in terms of accomodation, transport links etc it’s probably the most accessable so a sensible option. 

    Going to look at some dresses on Wednesday with my mum and my witness/MOH (my sister) Mum seems hell bent in pushing me into a big white dress but Im determined I would rather have a tea length one. She’s paying for it so we shall see who wins! 

  • Hi, I’m enjoying your thread! Another irregular choice fan here, my shoes were the first thing I got post engagement,  and I’m wearing them with a tea length dress! Looking forward to reading how your planning unfolds.

     I’m embarrassed to say I don’t really know the difference between a civil partnership and wedding (civil ceremony) so am off to read about it!

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 837 New bride

    How interesting! I'm not very well read on the difference either, is it fewer legalities? So a less binding commitment? I think I'd better read up on it too! Hope the dress shopping goes well, looking forward to reading more! 

  • Thanks for the kind replies :) 

    We’ve basically lived together for 12 years and wanted to make our partnership formal without getting married. Reason for this is that P’s mum walked out when he was 2 and his parents had a long, protracted and messy divorce which had a huge effect on the young child he was. For this reason he always swore he would never marry. 

    However he is not on good terms with his family and with both of us having disabilities it’s causing issues- for example when I had my cancer treatment he wasnt allowed in to see me as he was classed as a friend despite us being in a relationship for seven years and living together for 6.5 years! So for this reason we wanted our partnership formally recognised but he was still too scarred to marry me. For this reason we have agreed to a civil partnership. Neither of my parents are very well and my dad has dementia- I’m the youngest and I was desperate for my dad to walk me down the aisle while he still could. There is no requirement for a ceremony for a civil partnership but we’ve chosen to have one. 

    The dress shopping was successful- I chose this dress, the ‘Jessica’ tea length from Wed2Be. My sister and mum came with me and this was the first dress I tried on- I knew It was the one for me. I’ve always loved the tea length dresses and this one I knew was the one when I tried it. It needs a slight adjustment but otherwise it’s perfect! 


  • I have chosen our rings  P is having a simple titanium one because of the nature of his job he needs a hard wearing one. I am just having a plain white gold ring to match my engagement ring. 

    Got a bit further forward- I have a tiara which belonged to my sister, which she wore on her first wedding day 25 years ago. I really wanted a veil- and I have a gorgeous crystal trimmed one (see above) We’ve also purchased my sister’s bridesmaid dress- it was only £69 which was a real bargain. imageIt’s the perfect colour to fit with my colour scheme so that was easy and painless! My brother in law is also going to do the photography for us for free- he has a fine art degree and he is a talented photographer and artist. My sister has also said they will make up a proper album and everything for us which I was extremely touched by- I thought that was incredibly generous. 

    We wont be able to have a honeymoon as basically we’re just going to book as soon as we legally can so I’ve paid for a special trip for P’s birthday instead. His grandad came from a little village in Northern Ireland and he really wanted to see where his grandad came from- so I’ve booked us flights to Belfast and a hotel, so we can go and see where his family came from and visit the records office to help him trace his family tree. This is a special gift from me to him ahead of our ceremony, I’ve said as I’m going to be part of his family I’m interested to know their history too. :) 

  • I have our rings now- P’s ring is a simple titanium band set with a small diamond and mine is a plain heavy narrow white gold band. 

    The bill for civil partnerships has now had its first reading in the House of Lords- another step closer to making this reality :) 

  • My lovely friend who I work with who is a trained hairdresser is going to do the bridal party hair for free! 

    i know a lot of talented people who I am extremely grateful to! 

    Mum is doing the flowers, a lady I know from the rugby is making my bridal jewellery for me, my workmate is doing the hair, and my brother in law is doing the photos all for free. My sister has loaned me her tiara and my other friend is giving me her garter which has blue in it.

    i have old new borrowed blue- Old is going to be a silver bangle I have which is engraved with a message in my dear late friend‘s handwriting. There is a company called Inscripture who can engrave handwritten messages from loved ones on jewellery and I bought this bangle from them a couple of years back. I will be wearing it to feel like she’s with me as she would have loved to see my special day. She passed three years ago very suddenly and young and I miss her every day. 

    New is my dress and shoes :) 

    Borrowed is my sister’s tiara and blue is the garter. 

  • MrsS85MrsS85 Posts: 688 New bride

    You are lucky to have so many talented friends and family.

    Great your old, new, borrowed and blue is sorted to, your bangle sounds lovely.


  • MrsS85 wrote (see post):

    You are lucky to have so many talented friends and family.

    Great your old, new, borrowed and blue is sorted to, your bangle sounds lovely.

    Thank you :)

    The Civil Partnerships Bill had it’s final reading today and now it has gone to consultations stage. It is feeling very real now and I am really excited!

    P and I have had a serious talk about why I’m pushing ahead now to get stuff done. I think even my mum is starting to understand that due to the very last minute nature of the bookings that we are going to make (we want to get the ceremony arranged pretty much the minute it becomes legal) if we don’t start doing stuff now we’re going to have to fork out a lot of money in a very short space of time.

    I bought P’s suit today. I went to London this afternoon and in Debenhams I got him a lovely suit, shirt and tie for just over £100. It fits him nicely and looks really smart. I have also ordered my underwear and stockings. 

    We have far:

    My dress, veil, belt, tiara, stockings, underwear and shoes 

    My MOH’s bridesmaid dress 

    P’s suit, shirt and tie

    Our rings 

    Hair, makeup, flowers, photography and my jewellery sorted, I also know where the cake is coming from 

    The biggest things we will have to sort is the ceremony and reception, accomodation and cars. That’s it! We arent having a honeymoon so that’s one less thing to worry about at least! 



  • I haven’t been on in a while, life got in the way! 
    Quite a bit has happened. It’s getting closer to when the law is expected to pass and so planning has ramped up a gear. I have just about accepted that I will be civil partnered this year and that Christmas was my last year as Miss P- next Christmas I will be Mrs C! 
    I’ve changed my mind about my wedding ring! For Christmas P bought me a Pandora ring as an eternity ring which is a wishbone shape and fits round my engagement ring. My original wedding ring was a narrow band but the stone of my engagement ring dwarfs it. So I have instead chosen a wishbone ring which will mean the top and bottom rings over my e ring will match and I’m sure will look better!

    i have also had an idea about the venue. We had decided that we were going to have a registry office ceremony as we couldn’t afford the fees for the registrar to attend elsewhere. However our budget has just dramatically increased- my mum has announced she’s going to inject 1k into our budget and also I have finally had news of settlement to an ongoing claim I had so the budget is now 5.5k from 3.5k. For this reason we are now open to having our ceremony elsewhere- and are going to look at the hotel where we’re holding our post ceremony meal. We’ve all agreed it will make sense and save on transport! 

    Me and mum have appointments booked to see the hotel and registry office in a couple of weeks. Me and my sister (MOH) are going to have a lovely girls day in Manchester next month so I can get her shoes- she’s unsure if she wants Irregular Choice or not (she’s a massive fan also but she has a disability which might make wearing them a little difficult- we live at opposite ends of the country and compromised on Manchester so she could try on a few pairs)

     MOH has also started to organise the hen night which will be in July. We’ve agreed on a format and she’s sent out a save the date via Facebook Messenger. I’ve also made a decision on which wig I want to wear (I have alopecia) and I’m going for a lovely human hair one. This was somewhat of an issue for me as I was worried about my veil with it but I tried on the veil with my usual wig and it sat just fine. 

    Im trying to be as laid back as I can- stress isn’t really an option! I have many medical problems which I’m trying not to flare, I’m also a student and I’m just starting a new module which is a bit stressful. My mum is trying to take over somewhat which I definitely don’t want her doing- my brother has spoken to her and told her that she’s really upsetting me as she doesn’t believe I can or indeed will pay for anything (absolutely 110% not true) and everything will get left to her to organise (again 110% not true)

     thankfully my sister seems very calm and organised (she’s been married twice so I hope so!) and I’m 110% certain I will be able to rely on her totally to organise everything. She’s organised two parties before to where we’re going for the hen, including my niece’s 18th which she did a fantastic job of so that’s at least one less thing to worry about!

    Meanwhile P is just utterly oblivious. Men...
  • So the law is progressing nicely and the MP who proposed it originally thinks that it could be passed in a matter of weeks- hopefully the end of March which means we would be on track for our October 19 date. 
    I have set up an ISA which I have named wedding account, started it off with 1k and set up a standing order from my student current account so when my wages go in each month a sum of money will be transferred over. It seems a very adult thing to do I thought  :D 
    I made the mistake at looking at the reviews of the hotel where we hope to hold our ceremony and wedding breakfast- to say they’re awful is understatement of the century!!!
    However the reviews do go on to say that the public areas are okay but the rooms are lousy. If all else fails there’s a virtually brand new Premier Inn around the corner where i’ll Have to put everyone up. That means the cost is going to change again as cars will now be required- however mum and I are going to have a look on Wednesday and then i’ll Make a decision.

    It is starting to feel real now!
  • cs2thecoxcs2thecox Posts: 260 New bride
    Just caught up on your thread - so pleased for you that the new civil partnership law is coming in!
    I have a friend who's refused to get married because of some weird wording quirk in the vows that can't be changed, but has two daughters with his partner, so I hope something like civil partnership would be able to give them the legal status to protect their family without compromising on their other beliefs.

    I can't believe you've pulled everything together so quickly, and I LOVE your shoes!
    I have a medical condition (yeah, disability really but I hate calling it that) that has messed up my feet so I can't wear heels or slip on shoes, but my shoes were also the first thing I bought - the shiny blue Converse in my profile pic. It's all about the slightly mad shoes! ;)

    Do keep us posted with how things go!
  • cs2thecox said:
    Just caught up on your thread - so pleased for you that the new civil partnership law is coming in!
    I have a friend who's refused to get married because of some weird wording quirk in the vows that can't be changed, but has two daughters with his partner, so I hope something like civil partnership would be able to give them the legal status to protect their family without compromising on their other beliefs.

    I can't believe you've pulled everything together so quickly, and I LOVE your shoes!
    I have a medical condition (yeah, disability really but I hate calling it that) that has messed up my feet so I can't wear heels or slip on shoes, but my shoes were also the first thing I bought - the shiny blue Converse in my profile pic. It's all about the slightly mad shoes! ;)

    Do keep us posted with how things go!
    Ah thanks so much! Your shoes are fab too- I love stuff like that! 
    Its been a bit of a nightmare to do everything so quickly but I’m like a dog with a bone when I get onto something :D 
  • Well- we finally have a date when the first CP’s will be possible.
    Up until now everyone had been so sure it would be 1 October- and I had been planning for 19 October. 
    But the government in their wisdom have now stated that it will not be before 31 December. 
    So our new date will be 15 February. 
    I’m absolutely devastated. I have no interest in a February date, it will be cold (and I don’t do cold) it’s the day after Valentines Day which means everything and everywhere will be horrifically expensive and it’s 2 days before P’s birthday! 
    However looking at it pragmatically P always has that week off work and waiting until the following  October isn’t an option because a) it’s my 40th that month and b) Dad’s health is not good at all (he was taken into hospital the other night after he fell and hit his head) and so we need it done soon as possible. 
    I was so excited thinking that this Christmas I would no longer be a single woman and I would no longer be a Miss but cheers government for mucking it up!! 
    I really want to call the whole thing off as I really don’t want our ceremony in February 😭I know it sounds so selfish- P doesn’t really care either way- but I’m so scared about my dad’s health and I’m so scared he won’t be able to be with me 😔
  • WirfleWirfle Posts: 25 New bride
    @princessmaire1 sorry to hear you've had to move your wedding date back. It's such a shame that your fiance can't see past what happened in his childhood with his parents as it would make it significantly easier to just get married on a date you want this year what with your dad being unwell and all that. There's definitely no talking him around? 
  • Becky111Becky111 Posts: 222 New bride
    I agree with Wirfle you need to have a very serious chat with your OH. 

    Being a bride who's Dad is no longer here to walk her down the aisle. I'd be unable to hold back some small feelings of resentment if OH had played a part in that not being possible!
  • MrsCToBeeMrsCToBee Posts: 2,934 New bride
    To be honest I think your fiancé is being slightly ridiculous and a bit selfish - if you break up, it's going to be traumatic and upsetting whether you have a certificate that says "marriage" or "civil partnership" on it. How two separate people acted 30/40 odd years ago when their marriage broke up has no bearing on your relationship whatsoever.
  • Whilst i do understand the hesitation with marriage due to parental history, that just cant be used as a factor. If we all avoided things because of parents mistakes we would likely do very little with our lives. As MrsCtoBee says, if things go sour it doesn't matter what route you have gone down, it will be a hard process and that's the same for marriage, civil partnership, or even just a log term co-habiting relationship. 

    The issues maybe partly legal, in the division of assests ect but dissolving a civil partnership or obtaining a divorce, its all much of a muchness really and whilst i understand the views where a civil partnership is preferred, i really think for the sake of being able to have your family there  it goes down on the scale of importance a bit. 

    I'm sorry hes being stubborn with it, but i agree you should try and explain why its so important, and press quite how important it is to you. I do think its a hard one to get over and navigate, as its not like the loss is equal for whoever "gives in". You have much more at stake. 
  • I can’t help but agree with previous posters - you are treating this like a marriage with all the attendant commitment, the ring, the dress, the bridesmaids etc. Does it really matter to your fiancé whether the legally binding, lifetime commitment you sign says ‘marriage’ or ‘civil partnership’ on it - I mean I know he thinks it matters, but does it matter more than the woman he loves and her stress and worry about her father’s health and having him with her on the day? 
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