Family Matters
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Family Wedding Drama

Wondering if anyone else has found themselves in this situation, and how you handled it.  My parents divorced when I was young, and my dad was largely uninvolved in raising my brother and I.  In the last couple of years, my father and I have begun to develop a relationship, which has constantly caused issues with my mother.  I?ve been engaged for a month, and the drama regarding his role in the wedding has begun.  The wedding is next year, and questions of who is walking me down the aisle, doing the father/daughter dance, sitting at which table, etc have already arisen.  It doesn?t help that he is not planning to financially contribute to the wedding, and it will be financed by my mother, my fianc?, and I.  I?m planning to have my brother walk me down the aisle, but I?m not sure how to handle all of the other ?father of the bride? wedding events. He?s going to be there and I feel like if I completely exclude him he will be offended, my mom will be offended if he gets any special acknowledgment, and I really don?t want my family drama to be the highlight of my wedding.  That being said, I know the answer is, ?Do what makes you happy?, but I don?t even know what my options are.  Just skip the father/daughter dance entirely?  Dance with my mom (that will be awkward as dad stands by the wayside).sighhh!!  Any suggestions are greatly appreciated!

Re: Family Wedding Drama

  • YOu can process down the aisle by yourself -- you are not chattel -- and you can skip the father daughter dance.

    Just sayin'.

    This is your decision. Not your mother's.

    But do this because you decided to, not because you don't want to upset her divisive little apple cart.

    Even if she is paying for the event, she should be an adult and butt out and let YOU run the show as far as the dance and all the other extras that include your bio dad is involved. This isn't her call. And she knew this decision would be coming. Shame on her.

    Sit her down and tell her exactly what you told us --and say she is raining on your parade and upsetting you -- and also tell her this:

    She needs to have a one day moratorium and cut out all the divisive nonsense that involves her exH/your dad.  She needs to put on her nice company manners for your wedding day; yes, she needs to be nice to your dad for one entire day....after that, she can do as she wishes.

    She WILL be in a photograph -- or several -- with you and your dad: it is a given; they are still your parents and yes, you'll want a photo of them with you and one with you and your H -- and in a family photo, also, of you and your immediate family. She cannot say no to that.

    Skip the father daughter dance, if you wish. Nobody will miss it. GL.
  • I think it sounds great to have your brother walk you down the aisle.

     My now ex-H and I had a first dance but we didn't do any other of the traditional "dances". You can absolutely skip that altogether, IMO. 

    If you can't think of a specific role for your father and are concerned he will be offended, maybe you can just do some sort of a mention in the program? 

    ETA: A mention along the lines of "The bride and groom wish to acknowledge so and so, so and so, etc." and list all the parents... I'm not really good at these things but that's a way to give him a nod but not have a specific role set aside for him. 

    Regarding drama over the seating, I don't think this has to be that hard? Just seat them at different tables, of course, and give your mom a more featured seat as the parent that was there for you and is also helping you and your Fi to pay for the wedding. 



  • How can a man who contributed so little to your life be offended? Do you know this to be true? It doesn't sound like he was a big part of your life and isn't pitching in financially to the day, so why would he think he deserved special acknowledgement? I'm not saying it is all about money, it's about who was there for your in your life.

    Let your brother walk you down the aisle, either skip the father/daughter dance or dance with your brother, mom, and him. He sits at a table with his side of the family if they are invited. It would be way too awkward for him to sit with your Mother.

    Being in your life for a couple of years while you are an adult certainly isn't equal to a lifetime relationship you've had with your Mom.


  • Why are you worried about what this man thinks if you are only just recently building a relationship with him? 
  • image doglove:
    Why are you worried about what this man thinks if you are only just recently building a relationship with him? 

    I agree.  While I think it's nice he's come around and you guys are trying to forge a relationship, he would be out of line to expect any kind of special acknowledgment.  Financial contribution aside, the two of you JUST starting to rebuild.  You need to do what's comfortable for you.  Dance with your Mom, your brother, or skip the dance altogether.  Don't put undue pressure on yourself with this... it's just a wedding.

  • Skip the dance completely

    Have brother walk you down the aisle

    Parent of the bride tables are in with the rest of them, just more to the front...put hers in the traditional spot...and sit him with other family members near by

    Do mention him in program (leave parents off invitation)

    Do take pictures with him

    you can even dance with him, but it doesn't need to be "announced"

  • I am not on good terms with my parents, and they did not attend my wedding. I fully planned on skipping all of the "father-daughter" stuff. Since my brother could not be there to walk me down the aisle, my father in law about cried when I asked him to do it. He also surprised me when we were setting things up with the DJ by choosing a song for us to dance to instead of a traditional "father-daughter" dance. It was great! But there is no reason you have to do any of those things. Skip it all together if you want!


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