Post # 1
My fiance and I are discussing the various options fur ceremony and I mentioned that I don’t want to be walked down the aisle because it supports the patriarchy, harkens back to when women were property.
He said that I could view it as simply symbolically joining his family, that it doesn’t necessarily have to have a negative meaning.
What do you all think? Did you have someone walk you down the aisle?
Post # 2
My dad walked me down the aisle. It was one of the most special parts of my ceremony. I am on the more traditional side, so I liked the symbolism of being cherished and protected by my dad from birth and now joining with my husband who will do the same.
Post # 3
- Wedding: February 2018 - UK
My stepdad walked me down the aisle, and I saw it more like having someone I loved and trusted to be with me while I was really nervous, and support me while I was making a big life step. I know for him it was just a sweet moment where he got to show off the daughter he is proud of to all his friends and family.
Im certainly a feminist, and I know I didn’t feel like I was being transferred like property. I also know both my dad and husband would laugh at the idea that they were even remotely in any sort of position of control! You’re perfectly fine to pick and choose the traditions you like.
That said, if you don’t want to be walked down the aisle, don’t do it! It isn’t necessarily a slight towards your dad or a political statement, you do what makes you the happiest on your wedding day.
Post # 4
I’m a feminist and my father walked me down the aisle. For me, it was less about the symbolism and more about including him in the ceremony.
Post # 5
Honestly, I think the whole walking down the aisle thing is really weird. I totally agree with you OP that it seriously smacks of patriarchy–the whole giving the woman away as property. I know people impose their own symbolism on it now and that’s fine, but the history is still there. I would rather walk down an aisle with my husband together rather than having him stand by the officiant while everyone gawks at me. Needless to say, I did not do any walking down an aisle. My husband and I just joined the officiant who recited the vows which we repeated with our family and friends standing around us. It was really special.
Post # 6
Feminist here. When I was younger I probably would have had the same perspective as you, but I asked my father to walk me down the aisle because I knew it was something that would mean a lot to him and my entire life is an example of my feminist stances, so I didn’t feel the need to make that particular statement on my wedding day. We have a great relationship and I didn’t need to hurt my father’s feelings to assert my already obvious independence and sovereignty. I was in my 30s and my SO and I had a child already. I’d been making my own life choices for over 20 years. I just thought of it as my father escorting me down the aisle. I’m realy glad I asked him. He let out a little sob when he saw me and my husband also cried when he first saw me. I cherish those sweet memories of their expressions of vulnerability for me that day (neither of them are usually expressive like that).
What’s your intention for your wedding day? Figure that out and honor it- whether that means walking alone, being escorted by someone who loves you or walking in together with your Fiance. Then, whatever happens, you feel good about your choice.
Post # 7
- Wedding: November 2013 - Brighton victorua
I was afraid of falling down stairs so my dad walked me down but my mum walked our baby down.
At the enx of thr xay you do what feels right. Im glad I had my parents eith me till i got to the alter i was pretty happy emotional.
You don’t need someone to “Give you away” and we removed that part of our ceremony who gives this woman to this man… mainly because i kept saying yep I do in read throughs and apparently it wasnt that appropriate. However someone else i know had their kid from a previous marriage re-jiggered it and their kid gave premission.
Post # 8
My Mom walked me down as I wanted to acknowledge her importance in raising me. My Dad is dead so I chose to walk down the aisle to a song that was meaningful to Dad and me.
However, we did NOT include the bit in the ceremony about “who gives this woman to be married to this man”. I’m nearly 40 and don’t need parental permission to wed!
I know several people who walked down the aisle alone though, or even with their husband-to-be. They were all lovely.
Post # 9
- Wedding: September 2021 - Australia
I plan to have my dad walk with me, as I think he will appreciate being a part of the day that way, and also, like some other posters, I want someone there to support me – I’ll be wearing a ludicrously large dress with a train, plus very high heels and maybe not able to see out that well due to the veil, so to me it is partially a practical thing where I genuinely want his physical support.
Also like some other pp’s, we aren’t asking who gives this woman. She gives herself!
I think really, it’s up to you. You don’t need this to be the moment you make a feminist stance just for the sake of it if you would like that physical and emotional support. It’s not something to be ashamed of – all of us need someone, why not your dad? Or your mum or your sister or someone if the optics of a father figure make you uncomfortable?
Post # 10
My dad will be walking me dowm the isle. Neither him nor my future husband will ever own me to be able to ‘give me away’, my I am close with my dad and want to include him. The wedding for me is a lot about family, everyone is involved in some way and I know for my dad it will mean a lot to walk me down the isle. Just because I am a feminist doesn’t mean I can’t indulge in emotional sentiment, and I think saying this is purely about a man owning and giving away a woman is missing the fact that the action has evolved with the times and that isn’t what it is about.
Post # 11
My father died some years ago – if he’d been alive, I would definitely have got him to walk me down the aisle, not because it had anything to do with being ‘given away’, but because he was always my greatest support, and I’d want him by my side for such an important event!
I wasn’t happy with the idea of anyone taking his place, but my mum and OH were both worried about me walking down on my own, and wanted me to have someone there for support, so in the end, I asked my uncle, to whom I am very close.
But in the end, Covid meant that I couldn’t walk down with him because of social distancing, so my OH and I walked down the aisle together. With hindsight, I think it was the best possible thing, as walking down on my own would have felt odd and walking with anyone else would have underlined my father’s absence. But walking with my soon-to-be-husband felt like us walking toward our future together.
Don’t worry about symbolism, tradition or what anyone else will think. Just think about who (if anyone) you want by your side for that moment, and decide on that basis.
Post # 12
Ehhh I certainly don’t judge people who do it and I can certainly see why someone would want to do for me I didn’t do it because I personally don’t believe marriage is officially when I stopped viewing my father as the main man in my life that starred happening once I moved in with my bf and we established that marriage was definitely in the cards. IMO that tradition made more sense when women typically lived at home with their fathers right up until marriage. Now a days that isn’t as common and people are starting to view their partner as family when they move in together. I would hate to think during engagement my fiance still saw his mom as the main women in his life simply because we weren’t married yet
Post # 13
I had my mom and dad both walk me down the aisle. Our venue had a very long route to get to the altar so my dad was with me and we walked out of the gate to the bridge over a pond, and my mom met us at the top of the actual aisle and walked with us the rest of the way. I wanted both of my parents to have a special part in the ceremony and this worked well. I’m a feminist and I didn’t view it as being given away or anything. It was just nice to have a moment with them. My dad also served as our officiant, which I loved.
Post # 14
I’m not having anyone walk me down, but I have talked to my Dad in about 10 years after a falling out. I thought about having my mom do it, but I realized I’m not a fan of the tradition in general for the same reasons you stated. I do think one way to make it less weird would be to have your fiancé’s mom walk him down if you’re still considering it.
Post # 15
My Dad walked me down the aisle and it made for some of the most special memories and pictures on that day. We both have dimples on our cheeks and there’s a photo of us looking at each other arm in arm with the same grin. Almost like we were equally excited to get to the top of the aisle. It was a really beautiful moment.