Post # 1
My parents divorced when I was two, and my mother re-married to my step-father when I was 4. While my biological father was present in my life, I lived with my mother and my step-father, and so clearly my step-father was more involved in my day-to-day upbringing. My biological father also remarried, to a woman with three children and he moved in with them. While my biological father and I do see each other (only when I go to visit them), I don’t feel like we are very close. Yet I wanted to honor him in my wedding as well. I asked my biological father to walk me down the first half of the aisle, with my step-father walking me the rest of the way. Each father would have their own father/daughter dance. My biological father said he was ok with this, but now he’s called me and said he thinks it’s not right that my step-father get to walk me down the second half of the aise, because my biological father is my “blood” and he should have that right. He’s saying he’s very upset and made belligerent remarks about my step-father.
I don’t want to hurt my biological father, but I don’t feel like I should change the plans. My rationale behind having my biological father lead off the aisle was that it represented the chronology of my life — he was the first man in my life, my step-father the second, and my fiance, the third. But truly, my step-father has been there for everything throughout my life, and has truly raised me as his own daughter. I also think that changing the plans now would be a slight to my step-father. I feel like I’ve tried to be as equitable as possible. I don’t know what to do.
Post # 3
Can you have them both walk you all the way down the isle? One dad on each side? I think it’s very generous of you to include your bio-dad, and the fact that he’s being rude about it is just ridiculous. If it were me, I’d say this is how it’s going to be, or stepdad will be the only one walking me down the isle. It sounds like your stepdad is really the one who raised you and was there for you. It’d be unfair to him to say because you bio-dad is blood, he’s more important. That’s just crazy… especially if stepdad has been a good dad to you. My sister had my dad (technically her stepdad) walk her down the isle because he’s the one who raised her, he is her dad, even if not by blood.
Post # 4
I agree 100% with simplifiedbride.
Post # 5
I love your idea and I wouldn’t budge an inch. Being the donor of half your genetic make-up does not automatically imply any special emotional bond. I agree with simplifiedbride on this one – bio dad plays nice or he’s fired.
Post # 6
first of all it is not his ‘right’. just because he is your biological dad does not give him any ‘right’ to walk you down the aisle. this is purely a personal desicion. i was in the same boat as you, i love my stepdad and he has raised me since i was a kid… my dad was never around, and when i do see him its only at family holidays etc. so i just opted to have my mom walk me down. i think you need to have a heart to heart with your dad and explain the situation and how you feel to him 🙂
Post # 7
Ask him how he would feel if the position was reversed and it was one of his step-kids getting married.
Post # 8
I don’t think you should change your plans either. And I think you need to tell him that he is causing you pain and stress, because he’s acting immature when he should be supportive!
Post # 9
In my opinion, you have good rational, logical, and emotional reasons for the choice you make. Just because someone is your blood, doesn’t mean anything (in my opinion). I think that you should go with your original plan as it respects both of the fathers in your life.
Post # 10
I think you are being very accommodating and respectful of the both of them. Your Dad should respect your wishes and be appreciative of your consideration of him. I would tell him that you are doing things the way you said and if he doesn’t like it he can stay seated. I would also make it very clear to him that any outbursts at your wedding will not be tolerated. He is being immature and not considering your feelings. He should appreciate the fact that someone cared enough to take you in as his own, while your biological father was busy fathering other kids.
Post # 11
Okay, I have a slightly different perspective as a step-mom-to-be. Family courts generally give kids to the mother during a divorce, and it’s REALLY hard for a dad to get anything more than every other weekend, even if he wants more. It kills my FH inside to know that his ex’s husband spends more time with his daughter than he does, but there’s nothing he can do. I know your step-dad was there for you, but at the same time, it’s probably not your dad’s fault that he wasn’t as much, you know what I mean? Short of following your mother wherever she went, there probably wasn’t much he could do about the distance between you all.
That having been said, I think the way you have things split is fair, but try to understand your dad’s perspective: that he’s had to share you forever/play second fiddle to some other dude simply because he separated from your mom. Instead of “putting your foot down” and calling him immature, maybe just talk to him about his feelings and where the outburst came from. Talk to him about maybe becoming closer as adults in a non-wedding related way.
Just a thought from someone who’ll probably have to watch her FI go through this in 20 years…
Post # 12
I am sorry you are having to go through this. The way you have it planned is perfect. I am sorry, but if your biological father doesn’t agree, maybe he shouldn’t be involved. He is being very selfish.
Post # 13
@HisButtercup (which OMG is sooo super cute)! I think the reason that some of us are saying that the step dad deserves the honor, or at least why I did, is that the OP made the comment that the only time her dad sees her (currently, as in as an adult) is when SHE visits him – I took that as he doesn’t make the effort to visit her. I may be wrong with interpreting that statement that way though. That’s just the way I took it.
So though I understand why her dad would feel that way, I also think that he should be respectful of his daughters decisions and feelings 🙂
-Good Luck with everything!
Post # 14
@SouthernTulip: I understand what you mean, but without knowing the backstory it’s hard to take that one statement to mean that he doesn’t make an effort… My dad hasn’t been down to TX to see me once in the last few years; I always go to see my parents because 1) I don’t have the space for him to stay, 2) my schedule’s more flexible. It’s not because he doesn’t love me.
I’m just saying, from the other side, that guys get emotional too, and that it’s not as cut and dried as him not respecting her decision, though I’m absolutely NOT saying that she should change her plans. Weddings are a big deal to families, and I think it might be helpful is she sat down and talked to him about why he’s feeling what he is. I think if she has a calm conversation with him, as supposed to saying, “it’s my way or the highway,” it might result in better relationships all around.
Post # 15
Hi everyone, thanks very much for your support and suggestions.
@PinkPinStripes — When my step-sister was married, she had my biological father walk her down half the aisle.
@SouthernTulip — You’re right. I do make 99% of the effort to see him. He drives past where I live everyday to go to work. (He lives upstate, but works in the city) Yet the only time I see him is when I make the effort to go upstate to see him. He never comes by for dinner, never stops in to see my fiance and I, and didn’t do this when I was living alone either. I’ve been on my own in the city (sans Mom) for ten years. I don’t think that means he doesn’t love me, but it’s not like he’s going out of his way either.
@HisButtercup — I had explained my rationale at the outset of the discussion with him initially. This is him coming back to me a month later, and getting upset because I won’t change my mind because his feelings are hurt. I understand more than most what a big deal weddings are to families. I’ve got three to consider here, and I’ve done everything I can to make it as equitable amongst the three as possible. And with regard to your comments about my father having had to play second fiddle/share me forever, that has worked both ways. He’s got three stepchildren who he raised on a daily basis. I don’t begrudge him that — so I don’t feel he should be offended, when I’ve tried to make this as fair as possible.
Post # 16
I would not change your plans at all! I know exactly how you are feeling, biological was around until I was about 3 then pretty much disappered until I was about 18, step has been always been there for me since I was about 10, however I have an uncle who has been there since the day I was born and he is the one walking me down the aisle.
I came right out and told my dad, and my step dad that my uncle was the one who has been then for me from beginning to end, and that my biological dad was only there for the beginning and thankfully my step dad has been there for the second half of my life. I cried and cried after saying this because for some reason I felt bad having to say that to them. But I wouldn’t want it any other way my uncle has put in the time and effort to always be there for me and he deserves to be honored in my wedding.
Both of my dads will get a father daughter dance, and I have also had to remind my biological dad that it’s my decision and it wasn’t made lightly and instead of giving me grief about it, he should focus on us continuing our relationship we have now!
Best of luck!