Post # 1
I am a self-proclaimed daddy’s girl. My dad and I are very close and have a very special bond. I am the youngest of two children and the only girl. Now that I am engaged, I am a little sad about the idea of “leaving” my dad come my wedding day. The problem is, I think he’s REALLY sad.
I’m 22. I’ll be 24 when we get married. Not old by any means, but also not what is usually considered “too young.” Furthermore, my FH and I will have been together for over 6 years by the time we are married.
My FH took my parents out and asked for permission prior to proposing. Additionally, we are having a long engagement (getting married in July 2011), so my dad has a lot of time to get used to the idea. We are trying to do everything possible to be sensitive to the fact that he isn’t quite ready for this.
I know that it is not that my dad doesn’t want to me to get married and be happy. He isn’t ready for his baby to be grown up and married yet. So right now, he is pretty quiet on the whole topic of the wedding. I really want to include him in wedding stuff because he is so important to me.
Anyone have advice on how to handle a dad who is not ready to let go? I love him so much and just want both him and myself to be happy. Thank you!
Post # 4
Do you live at home? How does your dad feel about your FI? Is that the source of any of this? What do you mean by “leaving” your dad — do you consider yourself to be an independent adult woman?
I’m a complete daddy’s girl, too, but he seems to have taken my SO as another son from the first time they met, even before we were really serious. Then after the wedding, my dad asked me if I felt different and he told me that I shouldn’t because we were already married before the ceremony.
Even so, I didn’t really involve my dad in wedding plans. What are you wanting him to do? Maybe just try to talk with him about this, and if you have a special bond make the conversation just between you and him.
Post # 5
Thanks for the response. I just graduated from college, and I am going to be living at home while attending grad school (the reason for the two year engagement). My dad likes my FH just fine and has always said that if I am happy, he is happy. But so far, he’s been close to silent on the wedding issue. And I guess I just want to be able to talk to him about what’s going on with the wedding planning without feeling like I am upsetting him. My mom of course will be involved in the wedding planning, and I don’t want to make him feel left out. It’s not so much there are tasks I want him to do, I just want him to feel included and not like it’s something for my mom and I only to think about/talk about. I guess I am afraid that he feels like he’s losing me a little bit by my getting married.
I hope that makes sense and clarifies a few things.
Post # 6
Maybe you can set aside time to spend with just him? I’d also talk about other things than just the wedding too, so he can feel a part of your life as a whole.
Post # 7
perhaps you can have one meal a week just with him? set up a nice routine and give him the chance to tell you what he thinks about wedding planning
Post # 8
Could you try dropping a few little details now and then to see how he reacts? It might gradually get him used to the idea. If you know there are certain topics that would interest him more, say music or photography, throw some ideas his way and see if he offers some input. Good luck!
Post # 9
He may just take a while to warm up to the idea of you getting married. I think this happens a lot with dads, even though I said already that my dad wasn’t like that. You know he doesn’t want you living at home when you’re 35 or intend to actively treat you like a child, but it’s hard to realize how quickly your children grow up and are ready to move on.
Maybe you could talk with him about how his FIL reacted when he was marrying your mom … my dad tells me that my grandad didn’t like him at first either! My father talks about being invited over for Sunday dinner when my grandmother would make roast beef and he ate so much that they didn’t have their usual leftovers to make into lunch sandwiches the rest of the week.
I know you said it’s not that your dad doesn’t like your FI, but maybe things will get easier during these two years and then after you’re married, too. Just keep him involved in your life as well as your wedding plans. You’ll get a feel for what he’s interested in.
Post # 10
I didn’t have the same problem with my dad, but my little brother was another story! My little brother is 12 years younger than I am (which puts him at 16 right now) so I have always been more of a 2nd mom to him. I can also say he’s one of my best friends. When my fiancee and I started talking about getting married, I told him it wasn’t my dad he had to worry about, but my brother who would have the hardest time letting go. Thankfully I have an awesome fiancee. He not only asked my dad for permission to marry me, but my little brother as well. I know that keeping an open communication line with my brother has really helped. Yes, things will “change,” but I’ve let my brother know that the important stuff won’t change: I’ll always be his 2nd Mom/Sister, he always will be one of my closest friends, and he will always always be welcome in my home to hang out and carry on our “traditions” that we have. Gemstone, getting married won’t change you be a daddy’s girl. You’ll always be his little girl. My mom has been married for 32 years and still calls her dad “Daddy” and acts like a Daddy’s girl 🙂
Post # 11
It could just be a mix of being a guy and having a long engagement! I had a 2 year engagement too, and my dad wasn’t really into the wedding, more just saving for it 🙂 He never was though. He loves my DH and is happy we’re married, but he didn’t care about the wedding at all! It’s ok, it’s a guy thing.
Post # 12
*hugs* I know how hard this is! I’m not really what you would call a daddy’s girl, exacly, but our relationship has improved the last few years and even the thought of my boyfriend asking my dad if he can marry me is terrifying me!
Post # 13
I live at home too and I’m getting married in 17 days! I am a HUGE daddy’s girl and he’s being all great and helpful and supportive, but I think deep down it hurts him to see me go. And that breaks my heart.
Post # 14
Things are changing and everyone needs their own time to adjust. While your dad has verbalized that he’s happy for you, don’t expect him to express his happiness in talking about wedding planning. He may defer wedding talk to your mom and be perfectly fine with it.
I’d suggest spending time with him, as he is likely feeling a whole myriad of emotions. If you think about it, he’s been the #1 guy in your life and your FI is now that guy. It’s part of life, but the transition is difficult. And, sadness is a completely normal and natural feeling (on both of your parts).
And, I think it’s normal for parents to view their kids as kids… no matter how old they are. Put yourself in their shoes – it’s very emotional!!
Post # 15
My dad has had a hard time as well. Initially he was happy when I told him and my step mom that we were engaged, but he was in denial about the plans and hasn’t been involved. I realize he’s having a hard time letting go, but his non interest in the plans are very tough on me. But I’m carrying on as normal, trying to be sensitive and still do things together. The tricky part was deciding to move our wedding to fall 2009 instead of spring 2010 and my dad getting very upset and saying no. I really wanted a fall wedding, but I decided to deal with spring and give him the extra time to get used to the idea of me getting married. I’ll just have a semi-fall color wedding in May. (navy and orange).
It’s a normal part of life, and it is very happy, but sad at the same time because it’s a huge change/transition for everyone. I think trying to keep or even strengthen the connection to your father and letting him know that even though you’re getting married, you’ll always need him around for things and will always love him are the most important things to keep in mind. And then just remember that he’ll adjust and sometimes people just need the time to adjust. There might not be anything you can do to make it different.
Post # 16
This reminds me of my dad, he hasn’t said anything about it but he did talk with my mom… He was really sad that I will leave soon, but he’s also happy that I will be happy and this means a lot to me.
This is something really hard, just give him some time 🙂