In this day and age where gender stereotypes are increasingly shunned and traditions thrown to the wayside in favour of trailblazing ideas, innovation and originality, the dawn of a new era in the stag and hen industry is upon us. Growing numbers of brides and grooms-to-be are opting for joint stag and hen parties – or sten dos are they have been dubbed – instead of the traditional debauched last nights of freedom we are so used to. Thinking of joining forces for your upcoming pre-nuptial celebrations? Here are Eventhuse’s rules – be warned they are set in stone!
RULE 1: Make sure your intentions are good
Before you take the plunge and start down the party planning path of no return, take a second the really think about why you want to host your last night of freedom together. If the intention is based on a lack of trust on either side, then you’re almost certainly doing it for the wrong reason. However if the intentions are good on both sides and you come up with reasons such as “twice the fun” or “All our friends together” or even “double the budget” then please proceed to rule 2.
RULE 2: You must BOTH be on-board with the idea
If one of you loves the idea of having a joint stag and hen party, and the other is secretly longing for the traditional single-sex ‘farewell to single life’ style event, then you are going to have a problem. Whoever had to sacrifice their Stag or Hen party dream, is going to end up resenting the other and not having fun and that’s no way to start your life together now is it? If you’re both on the same page, continue to rule 3.
RULE 3: Agree on the invitees
When joining your two groups of friends the size of the stag and hen party is bound to grow meaning that certain activities might be off the cards. Agree on a manageable number before you start planning the event so that you can arrange according to the number of people present. If you’re planning a long day of multiple activities in various different locations, you might find the logistics become tricky with a big group. It is also important to make sure that you are both OK with the list of invitees. If one of you wants to include an ex and the other is uncomfortable, this could cause problems on the night – you are in this together and both of your happiness is equally important. Make an invite wish list each and then jump to rule 4.
RULE 4: Decide on a budget that suits you both
Now that you know the approximate number of people attending your party, work out a rough budget that you both feel comfortable with. If one of you earns more than the other and you feel comfortable with each other’s financial standing in the relationship, don’t be shy about contributing different amounts to the joint sten party budget – just make sure you are both happy and comfortable with the amount you agree on. If one of you feels pressurised, this may lead to resentment. Once you’ve agreed on the budget move on to rule 5.
RULE 5: Appoint a team of helpers
The planning and organising of stag and hen dos is usually a task appointed to the lucky best man and maid of honour – now that you are joining the party, these important friends may feel a bit stripped of one of their key jobs as your ‘best’ people. By recruiting these peeps to help you organise your joint sten party, you’ll not only be delegating the tasks ahead leaving less stress for you and your partner, you’ll also be ensuring that your special friends don’t get left-out. It goes without saying that the fun team you recruit should be responsible people you can rely on to get the job done. Once you’ve picked your team head over to rule 6.
RULE 6: Choose appropriate activities
We understand that single sex stag and hen dos come with certain prerequisites and expectations such as strippers, lap dancing or risqué party games, and while there is no reason why your joint stag and hen party can’t be a little bit naughty and sexy, it’s a good idea to make sure that the activities you decide on will appeal to both parties. If there’s going to be strippers, make sure they are both male and female; and don’t choose activities that are overly ‘girly’ or ‘macho’ so that both groups will be comfortable. Don’t be afraid to separate at some point during the day for a bit of real me time with your separate friends and to indulge in some things that you might not be able to do together.