Post # 1
Hi Bees, so I’ve been lurking around for a few weeks now and finally have something I need your help on!
So my Dad is being a bit difficult and I would love your advice on how to have the wedding my fiancé and I want, without totally alienating my Dad.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my Dad but we have never really been that close, he is one of those guys that’s thinks his way is the only way and to hell with anyone who has a different opinion! So there were plenty of arguments over the dinner table growing up as I am happy to admit that I’m pretty stubborn myself – I think Dad and I are just too alike!
Right, back to the wedding issue! When discussing that we were thinking of having our bridal party SO’s sitting with us Dad pipes up with the fact that he was very disappointed to not be sitting at the head table – and in not sure a nice way. Not sure what the tradition is where you are from but this is not what is done in NZ (I’ve subtly polled friends and work mates) and not what we want. Mum and Dad got married in the UK and it seems to be the norm there but as I have been brought up in NZ since I was 4 mths old I’m not really keen to conform to UK traditions, and FI is Australian and is fairly certain his parents would be very uncomfortable sitting up there with us. However, by doing this I seem to have created the FOBzilla. Down to the fact that when I wanted to discuss what Dad was going to wear I was snidely told that it didn’t matter if he matched/clashed with the boys as he wasn’t part of the bridal party… Mum did think they would be sitting there with us as well but when I explained things to her she was very reasonable about it and happy to be sitting at the #1 table, we honestly thought they would have more fun there as they would have more ppl to talk to!
Anyway, sorry it’s a bit long and thanks heaps for reading, would love your thoughts and what you are doing to try and make everyone happy, while still having the wedding you and FI want!
Post # 3
Ahhhh that’s exactly why we are doing a sweetheart table instead of a head table… head tables just make things so complicated. If I had both our sets of parents, our bridal party, and their SO’s on there, It would be far more than one table! No thank you! 🙁 Any chance you could take the sweetheart table route? If not, just put who you want at the head table. Is your dad paying for the wedding?
Post # 4
@loving_life: I know it’s so hard! I did think about a sweetheart table but I’m not sure if its really us – think I need at least a few others to take the focus off FI and I 🙂 no they aren’t paying for it, they are helping with a small amount so I don’t want to totally piss Dad off 🙂
Post # 5
@nz-bride: fair enough 🙂 but I figure we won’t really be actually sitting there for much of the night, but more mingling with the guests, which is why I’m not too worried about the awkward “all focus on us.” Good luck!
Post # 6
If your Mum and Dad are from the UK and got married here then yes, I can see why he’d be surprised at not sitting on the top table because it’d be kind of unthinkable not to have your parents on that table. However, top tables are a minefield at the best of times and this is why an increasing number of couples over here are choosing to have either no top table or a sweetheart table.
But regardless of what’s done in the UK, he has to accept that things are different in NZ and Australia and you’ll be following local customs. Not holding onto the UK way which in any case, has no relevance to you. As a quick example, my eldest soon is soon to be married to his American FI. The wedding is in England and while not totally traditional, will probably not include all the elements that usually accompany a US wedding. Were their wedding in the US, however, I’d have expected to go along with, and enjoy, the American traditions.
So I think your Dad needs to understand that he isn’t being slighted by not being on your top table. It’s not a personal insult or a desire to underestimate his role in your life. However, you do need to take everyone else into account too and that’s why it’s easier all round if you follow more recognised regional traditions.
Post # 7
Yep, it’s standard at formal UK weddings for the bride’s and groom’s parents to be sitting on the same table as them.
But as others have said, you aren’t getting married in the UK. Your father is just going to have to accept that you are going along with local customs. I hope he gets over himself soon.