For Those Who Divorced: What Do You Feel When You Hear Your Wedding Song?

The title kind of says it all.

Is there that tinge of remorse or complete revulsion with that What-was-I-thinking? head shake?

Can’t relate since I’ve been contentedly married for many years now and have to go out of my way to hear our wedding song.

We didn’t have a dance, or anything like that, so there was no “official” wedding song. But for whatever reason Nights in White Satin was our song. When I hear it every now and then I still like it but I have such a feeling of regret.

No wedding song, but we used to consider “Still the One” by Orleans as our song.

After the divorce, I couldn’t listen to it for years. I would run out of stores if I heard it being played. Not only the music, but the theme of a very long-term relationship (“We’ve been together for all these years.”).

I remarried, and years later I finally realized it referred to my second marriage, which is still going strong. I can listen to it easily now.

We didn’t have a song. When it came time for our first dance we asked the band to play something romantic. I couldn’t tell you what they played. (We were guilted into a big wedding by family so the effort we put forth into such things was minimal)

Now there is a song that an ex-girlfriend (the one who got away, first true love, etc) and I had that I have a won’t listen to today. It’s been 25 years and we’ve both done well for ourselves, but it brings out the whole “what if” thing and I don’t do “what if’s.” Which is too bad because it’s a damn good song.

Didn’t have one either. But the Carpenters’ song “We’ve Only Just Begun” struck a chord. Doesn’t bother me to hear it now, though.

Yeah, not sure what this “wedding song” is. Do couples choose a song to dance to, or cut cake to, at their wedding? Never seen that happen, in my generation or this current one.

But if I think of this as “For Those Who Are Divorced or Broken Up: What Do You Feel When You Hear ‘Your’ Song?”, then I know some stories. I know couples who’ll say “That’s our song…” Though my wife and I never did get around to having one.
The woman I thought I was going to marry played the Chuck Mangione album “Children of Sanchez” non-stop one summer. When I hear it, I think of what a gap there is in the world now… she died of breast cancer.

Yes, first dance song. I don’t think I’ve been to a wedding without one. Ok, maybe one or two, and I’ve been to about three hundred weddings. Perhaps it’s different in your area/culture.

Mine is Orleans’ “Dance with Me,” along with the Carpenters’ “Top of the World” and John Denver’s “Back Home Again.”

If we had gotten married, Haendel’s “Arrival of the Queen of Sheba” would have been her processional.

When I want to feel really, *really *depressed I listen to all of these and some other hits of 1975.

It’s always weird because when it comes in the radio, I find myself humming or whatever… THEN I realize what song it is and change the channel. Darkens that part of the day a bit.

All I’m saying is, please don’t play B-17 on the jukebox.

The first and arguably most significant in an admittedly not terribly long string of brown eyed girls was my first girlfriend ever. She went to East High, not my own high school; I met her at a sporting event and somehow managed the courage to pursue her relentlessly (I asked for her number and actually called her after her friend gave me her number). She was a year older—and decades more mature than I, and I fairly well adored her. She was an accomplished musician even as a teenager and she sang beautifully. Even though she was a preacher’s daughter, she was wise and worldly---- and I honestly haven’t felt the same about anyone since. Of course she went back east to college when I still had a year of high school to complete, and that was literally the last I ever saw of her.

She was a good enough piano player to be scheduled into regular rotation with the adults for Sunday morning services, and often she was the only accompanying musician. She played piano and sang alto better than any seventeen year old of her day. So it will be no surprise that several Barry Manilow radio favorites from 1977 and before were significant to us. Love songs that featured piano were precious and few to us, but actually any sappy romantic tune was enough to make me want to run away with her to begin a lifetime of adventure and romance, specifically anything by the Carpenters. In fact, she resembled Karen Carpenter quite a bit (and sounded like her too)—she could have easily been Karen’s kid sister.

Then shortly before her departure for college, Dan Hill’s SOMETIMES WHEN WE TOUCH came out. The complex and contradictory emotions and themes of the piece—as well as the overwrought production caught me like a gut punch. I realized I was happy and hopeful for the future, but sad about her leaving……… and I had an underlying fear of losing her and never finding anyone as perfect as her again. (Which by-the-way, happened.)

No, we couldn’t have some happy pop upbeat song. We had to heavily invest in all these stories of lost love, or unrequited love; songs about brooding and dysfunction, about both parties wanting something but acting in ways that make the desire less likely to be realized. Damn you Dan Hill! You one hit wonder who can reduce me to a puddle of tears when you suddenly appear out of nowhere.

Decades later when I finally married some other brown eyed girl, we danced to IT HAD TO BE YOU (significant to her because of the movie When Harry met Sally) and Satchmo’s WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD was prominently used in the professional quality video we had shot of the event. (I could easily support my family for a full year on what my ex insisted we spend on our wedding.) I have no problem listening to either of those, in fact I look forward to hearing them as I enjoy them very much on their own merit, and they hold no particular emotional baggage for me. As a side note to this already too long post, after we were married, my wife found an old box full of photos from my youth. She was particularly interested in photos of the first girl and me together. She said: “You know she looks a bit like me?” To which I replied: “Don’t be silly . . . at the most, you look a little like her” (secretly wishing she looked more like her).

There was a first dance at my wedding, and I’m certain it was accompanied by a song, but I have no recollection of what it was. Don’t think I’ll ask my wife, either, on the off chance she remembers and thinks I should also.

I completely understand about the one who got away, everything you wrote resonates with me. There’s actually an entire CD that does it for me. It’s not so much love songs, it’s just that we listened to it and enjoyed it so much together. What if’s suck and I really try to get myself out of that frame of mind when I feel one coming on. Like you, we are both living good lives. For me, it’s been 23 years.

No bad memories when I hear it, just warm fuzzies because the tune is attached to happy thoughts. But if I then dwell on the good I get bitter because of how bad it all turned out. Better that I just don’t hear it and avoid the rollercoaster ride altogether.

Semi-related: there are a couple albums I was listening to when things were at their worst. I had to delete them from my collection completely because they slam me right back into the awful times.

Not everyone places importance on it, of course. Our first dance song was “This Will Be Our Year” by the Zombies, but I don’t really connect it strongly to our wedding day when I hear it, and I doubt my wife would even remember what our wedding song was.

Our first dance was “As Time Goes By,” so it’s thankfully not something I’m too likely to hear in my day-to-day. And our divorce was on the amicable side of things, so it doesn’t really hit my heart too hard to think about it.

The bigger issue is more that that relationship really cast a cloud over the town we lived in when first married (my little college town). It’s tough to go back and not get pummeled with bittersweet nostalgia, since about 95% of my good memories in that town involved her. And the worst is that our wedding venue was a theater I really enjoyed visiting and it’s just a bit too much baggage to go to anymore.

All of my wives have known I don’t dance. Period. Three weddings, no wedding song. But my current (and last) wife and I have “our song.” It’s perfect for us. If anything happened to our marriage, (unlikely) I wouldn’t be able to listen to it.

It has been a long time since I left (1987) and the divorce (1989.) Listening to the song as I write this. It is still a great song and I like it a great deal. I do not feel anything personal when I listen to it.

I remember we did the traditional dance. I’m pretty sure we picked a song that was significant to us at the time. I have absolutely no memory of what it was other than I’m pretty sure it was an old song.