Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???

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blewis1 Posts : 9 Registered: 3/11/09
Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 5, 2010 9:19 PM

I have been trying to figure out who will give me away at my wedding next year; my stepdad had been in my life for about 7 years and been a huge part of me growing up, but my dad obviously, another huge part of my life. I want both of them to be a part of my wedding, to show them how much I care for them and they really have done so much for me. But, my dad doesn't particularly care for my stepdad and vice versa. So I'm stuck on how to approach this. I thought about my little brother giving me away but I really want to have that moment with my dad. Also thought maybe my stepdad could take me from my prep room to the aisle and meeting my dad at the aisle (going from a hotel room to the beach) but my fiance doesn't think that's the greatest idea, because my stepdad will be giving me to my dad....we have had issues about my dad always being number 1......It's a touchy issue for both of them and I really want them to be a part of it in the easiest way.....I haven't talked to them about it quite yet because I don't want them to know how difficult both them being there may be on me, my stepdad is already concerned about going because he wants it to be my perfect day.....

any suggestions???

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myras Posts : 396 Registered: 2/26/10
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 5, 2010 10:48 PM Go to message in response to: blewis1

There have been many posts on this dilemma, so here's a summary of various suggestions:
1. You're not property--nobody has to "give you" away. If you wish, you may have someone (or more than one) escort you.
2. Walk alone--you're a grown woman and you're basically giving yourself to your FH. You're standing on your own two feet.
3. Have a "first sighting" before the ceremony. Take pictures ahead of time (great for the timing of your event). Then, walk down the aisle with your FH, symbolizing your new partnership and the equality in your relationship.
4. Walk with both of your (natural) parents, one on each side. In Jewish tradition, the groom also walks with his parents. This is becoming popular with couples of all faiths. You could have your stepdad walk down the aisle first--perhaps he could escort your grandmother, maid of honor, flower girl, etc. (get creative!)
5. Walk the first part of the aisle with one of your Dads, having him "hand you off" to the second Dad at the middle of your walk.
6. Walk alone or with your Mom, and meet your FH halfway down the aisle (symbolism: meeting each other halfway).
7. Walk with your bio-Dad, but have your stepdad do something important in the ceremony (a reading, blessing, etc.)
8. Walk in with one Dad, but do the Father/daughter dance with the other (or at least dance first with the other Dad).

Hope these suggestions help you out.


myra@classysassyweddings.com

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 6, 2010 12:36 AM Go to message in response to: blewis1

Dear BL,

Myra pretty much summed it up. Especially take note of the comments about not being "given away" like a head of cattle.

I prefer to say the bride was "escorted" by someone, and that someone need not be male.

All of Myra's suggestions are good ones, and I would be comfortable with any of them. I don't like the idea of booting out both dads in favor of your brother. If you are to be escorted by anyone, it should be a parent, not a brother. If a bride has no parents in attendance, for whatever reason, then a brother or other relative can escort her in. However a bride with loving parents should either walk in alone, with her groom or with one or both parents.

Given all that you have said, and given that you have to make a decision and given that you seem to have a good relationship with your bio-dad and with your step-dad, I would vote for your bio-dad. He's the guy who has been in your life since the very beginning (literally), his blood runs in your veins and his genes are in your DNA. That's as good a tie-breaker as any, all else being more or less equal.

(There are situations, not yours, where all is not equal. I'm thinking about women whose step-dad was much more involved than bio-dad, for example. In such a case, I would absolutely back a choice of step-dad as bridal escort.)

An option that Myra did not mention, but might be a good alternative, would be for you and FH to be surrounded by all parents (bio and step) as the ceremony starts. You come in, escorted by bio-dad, then when you reach the altar, all parents stand up with you. (I would imagine that the mothers would kiss their respective child.) The officiant says something like "Do you, the parents, support this new marriage?" and all parents answer in unison "We will!", then take their seats. That's a modern alternative to the sexist "Who gives this woman to marry this man?".

Myra mentioned the Jewish custom of the bride coming in with both her mother and father and the groom coming in with both his mother and father. I am not Jewish, but I did exactly that when I got married back in 1976. It was a non-sexist alternative and it suited us perfectly. However, neither of us had divorced parents.

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thedbride Posts : 2 Registered: 7/9/07
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 6, 2010 10:52 AM Go to message in response to: blewis1

Hi!

I am actually in a very similar situation. I adore both my dads and they have both been a huge part of my life. That is why I am asking them both to walk me down the aisle. I do feel a little bad for my dad, because I am his daughter (blood-wise) and he doesn't see how I can have another dad. However, this day is about us and our lives that we will share with our FHs. (PS- I am not one of those brides that the day is all about me... I feel like it is a day for the entire family. We celebrate the lives that we had, and the new lives we embark upon.)

So what I did was I sat each dad down separately and talked to him about what I wanted them to do and how they felt about it. My stepdad was receptive, but also very wary like yours! He wants this day to go off without a hitch and he sees himself as one. I explained to both of them that I loved them both and that I wouldn't/couldn't be truly happy without both of them doing this job because they both meant so much to me. (For me they have completely different meanings, but they are both my dads and I have grown to love them equally.) My stepdad agreed that if it wasn't going to be a huge issue with my dad, than he would love to be apart of it. It took a little more time with my dad, but he eventually saw what I was trying to tell him, and he understood. They have both agreed to walk me down the aisle!

We have since been to lunch, just the three of us, so that I could get them warmed up to each other and though I think my dad is still a tincy bit jealous, he understands, and he is trying to get to know my stepdad, for my sake.

I did decide to do only one "official" father-daughter dance, but I am also going to have an "unofficial" dance with my stepdad. We shall see how it goes when the day arrives!!

I hope this helps you and I hope your day is awesome!!

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blewis1 Posts : 9 Registered: 3/11/09
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 6, 2010 2:07 PM Go to message in response to: thedbride

Thanks

I guess "give the bride away" isn't the right way to put it....sorry lol. I am just going to have to sit down with both of them, maybe they won't mind as much as I think. I just really want my bio-dad to be the one that walks me down the aisle, just me and him; so maybe my step dad wouldn't mind walking with me to the aisle .....thanks for the advice....I am open to more :)

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PharmToxGirl Posts : 5,446 Registered: 8/30/07
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 6, 2010 2:55 PM Go to message in response to: blewis1

Your step dad can walk you to the aisle and then can escort your Mom in to sit with her.

Talk to him. He sounds like he's sensitive to you. Maybe also have him do a reading as others suggested. I also had my sted dad be an usher and help sit people so he had something to do and was involved. I think he appreciated that.

 

 

 

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 6, 2010 5:00 PM Go to message in response to: blewis1

Ladies,

I think we all have to remember that your parents, bio- and step-, are all adults. They are older than you and have been around the block a few times.

Sure, you risk hurting someone when you ask one really beloved father over another really beloved father. But, think for a second. They were the ones who put YOU into THIS situation! Your parents were the people who conceived a baby, then split up and gained other partners.

They can deal with the fact that you have to make some decision that works the best for you. It's good to be the Peacemaker, and to try to accommodate everyone's feelings, but sometimes you've just got to break some eggs to make an omelette.

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cyndi33 Posts : 2,585 Registered: 1/3/07
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 6, 2010 5:58 PM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

I think you've gotten good advice so far, and I agree with AOTB to a point. bio mom and dad put you in the situation, not step dad. He came in and apparently developed a healthy, loving relationship with you. Which is awesome, and is a tough role to have, as a step. It would be a nice gesture to ask him to escort you to the aisle, or something like that. I know, that my stepmom appreciates having a parental role in my life, and my DH appreciates having a parental role in my kid's lives, to whatever extent they feel comfortable. So yes, while bio mom and dad chose to get divorced, the steps chose to come in and work to make a loving family, and it takes time, commitment and dedication to be successful in that role. I'm sure that he will be understanding and supportive, based on your previous posts.

 Proud Member of P.O.O.P.,  People Offended by Offended People

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Help5 Posts : 1 Registered: 6/13/10
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 13, 2010 8:23 PM Go to message in response to: blewis1

Hi there!
I am an officiant in Canada and had a wedding a couple of weeks ago where the bride walked down the aisle with both her father and step father. When they arrived to the ceremony spot the groom shook both fathers' hands then took his bride's hand for the ceremony. There was no "who gives..." or anything like that.
Hope that helps!

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leesha1977 Posts : 1 Registered: 3/25/10
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 16, 2010 4:41 PM Go to message in response to: blewis1

I have the same dilemma. So, my mother is walking me down the aisle. She is really pleased about it too :)

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Jun 16, 2010 6:05 PM Go to message in response to: leesha1977

Dear Leesha,

" So, my mother is walking me down the aisle. "

Fantastic. Especially appropriate if your mom has been the most consistent parent in your life.

Go for it!!!

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jackson132 Posts : 1,623 Registered: 9/13/12
Re: Giving Away The Bride--Dilemma!???
Posted: Sep 14, 2012 2:19 PM Go to message in response to: blewis1

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