Ok, my FH's parents are divorced. His dad has a girlfriend and his mom has decided to get married a few days before our wedding allowing her to introduce her new husband to the family. (insert eyeroll) Anyway...
Future FIL does not want to sit in the same row with his former wife and her new husband. However, my fiance was raised primarily by his dad and he wants him in the front row. Which leaves me to seat my FMIL and her new husband on the second row. She's not going to take that well. At all.
I know the mother's are "supposed" to be seated in the first seat of the front row, but my fiance would prefer to have his dad in that seat and I want to honor his wishes without everyone getting their feelings hurt.
And because were doing a Unity Candle it's definitely going to be noticeable that FMIL is not in the "proper" seat etiquette-wise.
Any help/suggestions are appreciated. Thanks!
I think both sets of parents should be sat in the front row and just behave themselves for the day. This is their sons weddding and they need to act like grown ups not children and force you guys to make such awkward choices. Just get along for the ceremony and reception its a 10 hour time frame at best.
Sorry you guys are going through this but I would tell them both exactly what I wrote, and would not accomodate eithers request, and if they could not be civial for one stinking day for the sake of their son then dont bother coming.
I agree that divorced or separated parents just need to suck it up and behave in public for the sake of their child. Put them both in the first row. There's plenty of room for the four of them.
Does FH have a sister who can sit in between the two couples as a "buffer"? That's what my sister did at my brother's wedding. (I would have been there too except I had to get up to do a reading).
Otherwise the two partners could be next to each other (perhaps with space in between). So they could be seated in the order: father, father's gf, mother's husband, mother. Or vice versa. Dad really can't sit 3 seats away from his ex for 20 minutes?
Needless to say, sit them at different tables for the reception,
Ultimately, I think you should have your fiance decide where he wants them sitting - if he's happy for his mother to sit a row back (after you've explained how it will look), then that's fine.
My cousin was in a similar situation when he got married - his mother (my aunt) ran out on the family when he was about 4 and he didn't see her again until he was nearly 12 and, while he tried to repair the relationship, he wasn't prepared to have her as a key part of his wedding. It doesn't help that she can be quite a dramatic person and will often make a scene or draw attention to herself.
My parents are divorced. Nasty divorce 3 years ago. My father left for my mother's friend that is 25 years younger than her and my father. :-/
I am having my father walk me down the aisle and my mom sit in the front row or they will end up both in front row on opposites sides down the aisle.
First of all, that sucks, and I'm sorry that you're having to deal with it.
I think it's worth pointing out to your FI that both parents "should" be in the front row, and that they'll actually be a lot closer to each other if his mom is sitting directly behind his dad. If you're going to have her do something with the candle up front, she WILL need to either be in the front row or on an aisle seat, because otherwise it's going to be clumsy as hell. As PP have suggested, you could seat them in the first row with a large buffer in between.
However. If you explain this once and your FI is insistent as to how he wants it, I suggest just saying "OK, I hear you," and letting him handle it. This is not some BS "because he's the man" perspective, but info gleaned from growing up in a blended family, and from having a husband who is not super close to his own family. Giving your perspective is always OK (you'll be part of this family too!), but it's always best to recognize that there's history there that you haven't lived, especially when divorce is involved, and so his preferences ultimately carry the day when it's his family.
DH has divorced parents that requested to be sat on different tables at the reception. Well, that didn't happen. We didn't talk to them about it, just sat them at opposite ends and everyone was very civil. It has not been mentioned since either. Just say 'ill see what I can do' for your FFILs request :-)
Thanks everyone. I know my FFIL will be the easier to deal with. In fact, I'm pretty sure he'll tell us to seat his ex-wife and her new husband on the front row to avoid the drama. FMIL, on the other hand, thrives on attention and won't hesitate to make a scene because she didn't get the "aisle" seat on the front row -- the seat her son doesn't want her to have; however, I'm not sure he would verbally tell her that.
Right now, I'm thinking groom's father, his girfriend, groom's sister, groom's mother, groom's stepfather. I still think there will be trouble from FMIL. I considered doing groom's mother, groom's father, groom's sister, fathers GF, new stepfather (we've only met him twice), but I'm pretty sure she's not going to like that, either.
Personally, I don't think the new stepfather my FI has only met twice, should be sitting closer to the groom than the father who raised him, IMO.
Thanks again and if anyone has more suggestions/help, I'd be happy to hear them. :)
It is only a suggestion and a bit out of left field, but could you put the FMIL & FFIL on the front row and their respective partners behind them.? It's really only for like 30 minutes of their lives and for the sale of their children? I realise this could be awkward, but it's not like they would have to be separated from their partners all day..?
It's one thing to sit in different tables another for the ceremony, I thin by putting them at opposite sides of the bench and they should be fine because they should be paying attention to the ceremony.
That being said it's your Fi parents and I thin ultimately his choice. Voice your concerns then make it clear he has to explain his choices to his mother not you.
Thanks for input, everyone. I going to give FH the options and let him decide, then if FMIL says anything, he can tell her it was his choice.
Ugh I totally feel your pain--we have the same problem. FI's bio parents haven't seen one another in like 15 years and still shit-talk the other one constantly. We're solving that problem (sort of) by just not assigning them seats. FMIL and FSFIL will walk in, FFIL will walk in, they will find their own damn seats. I refuse to play into the drama, and I (mostly) trust them not to start anything during the actual ceremony. We've already given them both the "I know you love us more than you hate your ex, so act like it" lecture, and I am sure they'll hear it again before FEbruary. Good luck!
FI's parents are divorced and remarried. We are going to have them seated (from inside-out):
FI's Mother, FI's step father, FI's grandmother, FI's father, FI's step mother.
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