Post # 1
I am a groom seeking answers. My wife-to-be has very little family to speak of. She has not spoken to her father in many, many years and her mother will not be attending. I however have over 100 family members attending our ceremony. We of course have decided not to have a bride’s side or a groom’s side. That is not the issue.
My fiance will have 1 bridesmaid and I had originally decided not to have any groomsmen. That has led to a problem. My parents are divorced and I am very close with my stepfather. I want to include both my stepfather and my dad in my ceremony. What is the best way that I can include the both of them without having them be actual groomsmen? I need them to be involved. (p.s.- there is a little tension there)
Post # 3
You could make them ushers, which means that they’ll greet people as they come in, hand out programs and help guests find seats. Having ushers would probably be helpful in your situation because you don’t have a bride’s side or groom’s side, so they can inform the guests of that and make sure the two sides have a fairly balanced number of guests. Most people will automatically sit on the correct side and you wouldn’t want your side to fill and your fiancées side to be empty.
Alternatively or in addition, you could have them do readings during the ceremony, make speeches at the reception, or be the MC at the reception. There’s a bunch of stuff, but that’s all I can think of right now.
Post # 4
Welcome to the Bee!! I’m sorry you are having a bit of tension. Could the fathers perhaps do readings? Or maybe not serve as groomsmen, but simply as ushers? They could both wear a boutonniere and greet and seat guests as they come in? Maybe one or both could give a toast at the reception?
Post # 5
Hello, and welcome to the bee 🙂
Is your FI close to either one or both of them?
Maybe you could have one of them walk her down the aisle and one of them be your best man. There is no rule that says both sides have to be even.
Post # 6
@noritake22: I love this idea!
Post # 7
Honestly if I was your dad or stepdad and was told to be an usher I’d be insulted. The groom’s parents don’t traditionally have a real “part” in the wedding. I think making sure they both have boutonnieres and that they both have the chance to give a toast at the reception will help ease a little tension.
Your seating will also be a big deal, so I’d recommend having your dad sit in the front row on one side and your stepdad and mom in the front row on the other side at the ceremony. Seating at the reception will be tricky too, they’ll both want to sit next to you or at an important place. I would avoid sitting directly next to either of them, it’ll make the other jealous. I would sit them at the same table, equidistant from your head table (if you’re doing a head table). If you’re not doing a head table, then I would seat yourself, your bride, her bridesmaid (and guest?), your mom, your dad and your stepdad all at the same table. Just not next to each other or next to you.
I’m sorry there’s tension there, I had to deal with the same thing at my wedding with my DH’s mother and stepmother. We ended up having a head table and seating all the parents together at the nearest guest table.
Post # 8
Traditionally the grooms parents don’t really have a role in the ceremony, unless they are doing readings. Why not have one give a reading of his choosing for you, and the other give the first speech at the reception?
Post # 9
You could have each of them do a reading. Or if you don’t want them to play the same type of role you could have one do a reading at the ceremony and one do a toast at the reception. Since your fiance doesn’t have a lot of family it shouldn’t be an issue to have your mom and stepdad sit on one side of the aisle (yet still front row) and your dad sit on the other side of the aisle in the front row. You can google different types of ceremonies because there are certain types that have parts for the parents so you could have your dad play a part in one of those ceremonies and have your stepdad do a reading. Speak to your officiant as well, they could have some great ideas for you.
Post # 10
Just a tip – make sure your photographer knows about this tension well in advance so they can steer clear of any potential arguments.
I wanted my uncle (with whom I am very close to) to be a part of my special day and I just asked him what he felt comfortable doing – and since my dad is in a wheelchair, my uncle will be sharing my father/daughter dance with him – totally his idea (with the blessing of my father). By asking each “dad” what they envision, there will be less of a chance you’ll insult either since they had a hand in the planning.
I’m sorry to hear there is tension and I hope you both have a wonderful wedding and beautiful marriage!
Post # 11
I’d have them do meaningul readings. Good luck!
Post # 12
Tradition, shmadrtion! If you want your father and step father to have roles in your wedding, do it! Ushers are a great idea. Readings are great too! As far as being insulted if you asked them, it’s all in how you approach the question. Good luck!
Post # 13
Depending on how formal you are planning on being and what your sense of humour is, you could always do a pair of father-son dances 😉
More seriously, have you considered their personal or professional skills and aspects of the wedding planning they can help out with? If there is an opportunity to showcase their contribution and possibly even mention it in a wedding program then there is a good opportunity to incorporate them. Maybe there are some ways they could be there for the bride as well as yourself. One could see that your bride gets to the ceremony on time, one could be responsible for seeing that the vendors are paid for.
Toasts are always nice.