Husband refuses to wear tux or even suit!!

Old Aug 25th, 2003, 10:33 AM
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Husband refuses to wear tux or even suit!!

I have a husband who marches to the beat of no one...Just likes dressing casually, all of the time. Dressing up for him--going to wedding/funeral would be blue blazer, dressy pants and tie (although that he despises). He works for himself and likes to set his own rules. Doesn't see the need to dress a certain way for certain occasions. So now the dilemma...a cruise. We did go on a four day cruise about a year ago and for "formal" night he wore an open knit shirt with a blue blazer (a concession made after much begging, pleading. The rest of the men in our group wore suits...my partner completely comfortable and undaunted by the fact that he stood out unfavorably in our group.

Now this group is planning a longer 12 day cruise and I understand the dress code is more strict then and formal wear is de rigeur. So what's a wife to do? He's so steadfast and obstinate in his belief yet I want to go on this cruise.

Is anyone barred from the dining room if not dressed to code? Any suggestions, short of a divorce!! Actually, in every other way, he's easygoing and sensible...just this one on dress. Grrrr...what do I do. Are there any others like him out there? Help!
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Old Aug 25th, 2003, 11:23 AM
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Yes, there are others out there- I think I am married to his brother! Had to beg and plead for our first cruise and then left the clothes on the back of the door. He was thrilled because he got to wear jeans.

Would tell him it would mean a great deal to you and he has not dressed up for you in X years. (Or he has never dressed up for you.) "Honey, you will look so good! I would love it! You like it when I wear makeup and dress up, so could you do it for me this one time?"

Don't use the "society has rules on dress codes" argument- that has gotten me no where in 12 years! I push the 'ole "but I dress up for you" button and it works well.... most of the time.

Hey, if he is like every other husband in the world, you are the one that does all the packing. So pack for him! Give him no option!

Either way, I am glad I am not the only one and good luck to you!
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Old Aug 25th, 2003, 12:48 PM
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lucky- One way to get around this and make everyone feel comfortable is to go with Windstar Cruises..
Specifically the WINDSURF...That cruise line does NOT require jackets or ties ever..it is upscale casual....NOT jeans...

5 star service, a 4 masted sailing yacht, and great ports....both in the caribbean and in the Med...

That way, everyone will be happy and you won't have to deal with formal nites...I went on one 2 years ago with my hubs and he said not to ever put him on a normal cruise again....He loved the Windsurf and I am sure you and your friends will also..
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Old Aug 25th, 2003, 03:15 PM
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Is there an escort service on the cruise so you won't be alone at the dinner table? Or order room service on formal night.
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Old Aug 25th, 2003, 03:30 PM
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I don't know of any line where formal wear is "required" although most will niggle and prod through daily bulletins, "guidelines" and the like. Dark suits are universally equated with "formal" BTW and blazers-and-ties are always visible.

This is one of the most hotly contested topics among cruise bulletin boards, although surprisingly (or not) it doesn't seem to be all that important on the ship. Still, some lines attract passengers who expect others to dress more formally it seems.

There are exceptions to the high-quality-wear-tux rule. Princess offers "personal choice" dining where one can go to alternate venues for dinner on formal nights. Ditto Celebrity. Norwegian uses "free style" all the time. Radisson and the new Oceania lines also say "casual elegant" is their standard.

Which line are you contemplating? Maybe you can achieve your aims without anyone's feelings being hurt. Either that, or if it's an Alaska cruise, tell him that the "Alaska Tuxedo" is a new Pendleton shirt, pressed jeans and a string tie. Cowboy boots or sno-pacs optional. Or a black Armani jacket, black shirt, black trousers and shades - they'll think he's a movie star or possibly a gangster.

It's funny - formal dressing and classy dressing are not the same thing (women esp. take note). Scan around on formal nights and you'll see that a cumberbund doth not a classy gent make.
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Old Aug 25th, 2003, 04:01 PM
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I would also suggest a river cruise - we are going on Viking in October and there are two "formal" nights (we understand men can get away with a blazer and golf shirt) and the rest of the nights are slacks and golf shirt, etc.
In July we went on HAL to Alaska and on the two formal nights my husband was one of a minority in black tie - some couples avoided the whole thing by not eating in the dining room and going to an alternative restaurant. The rest of the men wore blazers or suits. One couple at our table just avoided the captain's cocktail party and picture taking and came to the dining room as usual. On the one "informal" night again my husband was in the minority with a suit. However, no one was made to feel uncomfortable no matter what they wore and your husband should be able to appear in the dining room wearing whatever.
The dress has gotten lots more informal since our last cruise in 1996 with HAL also and to Alaska also. Having said all this, both of us like wearing formal attire when we can and have accepted it as part of the cruise experience. We seem to be in the minority.
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Old Aug 25th, 2003, 05:00 PM
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It is possible that one of the other men in the "group" might offer him some gentlemanly advice about dressing - if done in the right way it might stick. I also like the idea of your packing an appropriate jacket/suit for him in case he changes his mind - he might do that after first formal night.

That said, you might just have to dress and behave in your own classy way and try to ignore his choice of attire. After many years of being married, one becomes so identity-interconnected that this may be difficult. There are things my husband does that drive me crazy (and I am sure it is the same for him) that I see as glaring to the rest of the world that no one actually cares about but me.

My husband's choice of clothing has improved greatly since our teenage daughter now goes shopping with him - great father-dtr time and he will actually listen to her opinion.
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Old Aug 25th, 2003, 07:21 PM
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Some men just don't care what they wear. I have a brother-in-law who owns one pair of shoes. And they are brown. He wears the same pair with jeans or with a good dark suit. He blames it on his bunions...bullsh#t! You can get comfortable dressy shoes. After 26 years, we all have learned to accept his quirkyness.
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Old Aug 27th, 2003, 08:39 AM
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Lucky:

Here's a different thought for you. If your husband's issue if that he likes to stand out and be different, maybe you could find him a suit he actually likes to wear. Instead of a traditional wool suit or tux, maybe you could find him some kind of funky, unstructured linen suit--something that would look elegant but different and still be comfortable.

Don't know if this is a possibility, but I thought I'd throw it out there for you.

Cheers!
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Old Aug 27th, 2003, 09:54 AM
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Like travelagent above, I'd appeal to his sense of wanting to make you happy. But knowing your husband, I'd also ask him to do the minimum, not the maximum, to cooperate. I like to dress, but my husband doesn't - on our recent cruise we dressed for one formal night dinner and ate at the non-formal buffet the other formal night. He wore a suit, not a tux, by the way.

Rest assured he won't be the only guy there in a blazer. How about a dress shirt and tie with blazer for dinner then he can lose the tie after you leave the dining room? Nobody is turned away from the dining room for not meeting the code.

While I like to dress up, I also accept the fact that others don't, and they paid for their cruise just like I did. I wouldn't worry about what anybody else thinks. They are just a bunch of strangers, anyway. Your husband seems pretty secure with himself. If not wanting to follow the crowd is his biggest fault, you truly are "lucky".
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Old Aug 29th, 2003, 08:56 PM
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I just completed a one week Alaskan cruise with Celebrity. Like your husband, I balked at the idea of wearing a suit and tie. Unlike him, I believe that if one is going to go on a cruise with dress recommendations, one should follow them. I did.
If your husband won't wear at least a sportcoat and tie on "formal" nights, when he should wear a suit or tux, he should eat dinner on those nights at the pizza bar or whatever casual alternative is offered on the ship. You can have a good dinner with your travel companions. Yes, he is getting short-changed, but he is the one who won't play by the rules. Or better yet, let him vacation at your local Motel 6.
That said, I think it's time for the cruise lines to recognize that getting dressed up is becoming rarer and rarer in other aspects of society (look around at church, school, work, etc.) and they should follow suit (pardon the pun).
For the one week cruise in Alaska, I dragged both a suit and a sportcoat. And it turned out there was only one night for which a sportcoat was the recommended attire. That is overkill, especially when the airlines are cracking down on weight restrictions.
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Old Aug 29th, 2003, 10:55 PM
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What I did several years ago is asked my husband to wear a tux "for me". for a special anniversary cruise..and he loved dressing up in one and bought one. Personally, I think all men look so much more handsome and with that touch of a James Bond or Cary Grant about them. As for cruise ines letting people dress more casual...I abhor the sloppiness I see and lack of disrespect for others whether it's in church, theatre or on a dress night for cruising. I'm not a fuddy duddy. Just call me old fashioned and want to thnk of cruising as glamorous, the way it used to be they tell me.
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Old Sep 3rd, 2003, 12:16 PM
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We do a lot of cruising and my husband refuses to bring a tux. H e does bring a suit also a spt coat and ties.
We cruise on Silversea line and I will say there are many men who also do not like to wear a tux. You will never be refused from the dining room, no matter what cruise you take. I would not suggest jeans at dinner on any ship!
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Old Sep 5th, 2003, 04:41 AM
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In my mind, being a gentlemen requires dressing appropriately for the occasion. It may not be what you would normally wear or what you even enjoy wearing, but not dressing appropriately is inconsiderate of the other passengers who do.
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Old Sep 5th, 2003, 07:30 AM
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I agree with bettyK. I would be very disappointed in my husband if he refused to wear a suit or a tux, when appropriate. My husband works for himself and I don't think that has anything to do with dressing appropriately for an occasion.

I think it's time for lucky03's husband to act like a grown up - IMHO.
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Old Sep 5th, 2003, 03:20 PM
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What about just ordering room service and have a romantic evenning just the 2 of you on formal night rather than eating in the main dining room with everyone else?
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Old Sep 10th, 2003, 04:32 PM
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I suggest you offer him the most fantastic sex if he dresses up and if he's like most men, he'll do it and look forward to taking it all off!!
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Old Nov 5th, 2003, 01:20 PM
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Sounds like Mr. lucky03 is just trying to exert control over Mrs. lucky03. If you ask him to do something as innocuous as dress appropriately and he refuses, he is a bully and disrespectful of those around him. It may not be a big sin to dress appropriately, but refusal to do so is indicative of a bigger than "being comfortable" problem.
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Old Nov 6th, 2003, 01:11 PM
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I have found that hi voltage delivered at low current usually solves most stubborn attitudes.

Done on a consistent basis this can lead to permanent behavioral changes.

Plus it's fun. JK Good Luck
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Old Nov 10th, 2003, 01:34 PM
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Wearing a suit or a tux is not something a couple should get in a fight about. Pick a line where there are alternatives for the formal nights or where there are no formal nights.

Then you will both be happy: you'll be on a cruise and he can wear what he wants.
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