What Can You Do if You Don't Like What Your Reader Picked?

Ceremony & Vows, Etiquette
Common Wedding Ceremony Mistakes to Avoid

Photo: Getty Images

You've found an officiant, written your vows, and picked who'll be reading during your wedding ceremony. If you've left the choice of reading up to the friends and family members you've selected, there's a chance you'll end up with something classic (like a Shakespearean sonnet or a passage from The Alchemist) — or you might hear a reading that doesn't quite fit your love story. What should you do if the passage in question isn't quite what you were hoping for? Our experts weigh in.

The easiest way to make sure you like the reading is to pick it yourself. If you're working with an officiant to craft a custom ceremony, ask them for a few options or browse the internet for ideas. It could be anything from a quote in your favorite movie to a Native American blessing to The Velveteen Rabbit — look around and find the words that best fit the story you're telling and the relationship you've built. This is even easier for more religious ceremonies, where your officiant will most likely have a selection of passages for you to choose from.

See more: Should You Use a Microphone For Your Ceremony?

If you'd like your reader to make a choice, give them some guidance, whether it's the mood you're hoping to create or asking them to choose something more secular. You could even request that they choose two or three options and share them with you so that you can choose the one you love best.

If you've opted to be surprised and you're hearing the reading for the first time during your ceremony, do everything you can not to cringe! Smile, lock eyes with your fiancé, and wait it out. The only time you should ever interrupt the reading is if it's something that is either offensive or incredibly inappropriate, at which point you should lean over to your officiant and ask them to halt the reading. They should approach the reader and gently (but at a slightly higher volume than the reader is speaking) thank them for their selection, and announce that you will be moving on to the next portion of the ceremony.

Give a Subscription to Brides Magazine as a Gift

Get personalized planning advice, exclusive offers and must-read wedding news.

Thank You
for Signing Up!

Check your e-mail inbox for the latest updates from brides.com