(Closed) Dad Passed Away

posted 11 years ago in Emotional
Post # 3
2204 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

I’m sure this must be a very emotional time for you–planning your wedding without your dad around.

I have a friend who lost her father about 2.5 years ago, and I think she is planning to dance with her mom at the reception!  It’s not for everyone, but she is very close to her mom.  Do you have a grandfather around that you are close to?

I think the locket charm on your bouquet is a beautiful way to honor your dad.  You might also want to add something in to the ceremony.  Read a passage from a book he loved or make a donation to a charity he believed in.  There are many ways to remember your dad on your big day!  hope you find the right ones!

Post # 4
519 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

If you do a slide show or (what else would you call it?) you could include your dad in the pictures…any pictures you have with him would be good.


Your dad will be there, in spirit and in your heart. 

Post # 5
792 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

I’m so sorry, I lost my dad in 2004 as well. I miss him everyday and I wish that he were here to celebrate this time in my life. Alas, the universe had other plans… Like you, my uncle (as well as my mom) are walking me down the aisle. I’m glad to have both of them so hopefully I can avoid falling flat on my face! About the father-daughter dance thing, do you really need to do one? I mean, no one can replace our fathers, so my thought is, why try? As for honoring him, I’m putting a small picture of him on the altar.

Post # 6
1276 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

I’m very sorry for your loss.  I also think the bouquet locket is a lovely idea and way to keep him close.  As for adding something to the ceremony, give yourself space to decide honestly what you are comfortable with.  I lost a close family member very recently, and we were going to have a memorial statement in the ceremony (without naming names).  Well at a wedding 3 weeks ago I burst into tears just reading the memorial statement they had in their programs.  We nixed the statement right after that. 

I think in the end do what is meaningful to you…but also be cognizant of how it will impact you.  Your dad will be there with you, and he will want it to be a joyous occasion.

I also think it’s okay to skip the F/D dance.  A very good friend of mine is getting married a few weeks after me (her father passed away in 2002).  Last we talked, that is what she was planning.  Unless there is someone who leaps to your mind as an appropriate person to have a dance with, I think it will just feel forced.  If you do decide to do one, you can have the dance announced as being, "In honor of the memory of your father"…or something like that.

Post # 7
51 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

I lost my dad in 2000 suddenly. It definitely adds a whole new emotional dimension for the whole family!

My brother is walking me down the aisle – we all liked that idea. He is also escorting my mom to her seat, but on the way they are going up to the front to light a memorial candle together, then he will seat her. We put a nice note in the program about it. But we really thought a lot about how my dad would want us to have a happy day – and we decided that we wouldn’t have anyone actually talk about it at the ceremony. All those in the family will remember it anyway, but we didn’t want to bring on extra tears. I’ve lost all my grandparents too and there are some in the family who feel the same way about them not being there. We’ve gotten some really emotional cards with wedding gifts.

For the reception, my mom is doing the welcome toast (which is not really her thing, but she thinks she should). Originally we thought about scrapping the dance, but decided to do a family dance instead of a daddy-daughter dance (again the band has been instructed not to directly mention my dad, to keep it as light as we can). The plan is, I will start by dancing with my mom for the first verse, then my brother will cut in and my mom will dance with her boyfriend. I’ll dance that verse with my brother, then my new husband will cut in and my brother will dance with his wife. So by the last verse we are all out there. I just really liked the idea of it because we are all really close. 

one other thing we are doing that is not exactly a memorial thing, but ends up that way because of those we have lost (1 parent and 7 grandparents between us), is putting wedding pictures of all the parents and grandparents up on the mantle with the names. we’ve ended up with some really fun pictures – representing lots of different eras – and it will include those people in our day in a happy remembering type way.

It’s just not easy to have this on top of all the other emotions, so I completely agree with fizicsGirl that you should really think about what will make you happy and be ok for you and go with that. everyone will understand! 

Post # 8
1205 posts
Bumble bee

My Fiance has lost both of his parents and we are leaving 2 empty chairs in the front row.  Before the procession, 2 of his nephews will walk down and place a floral arch over the top of those chairs. His (4) sisters and his brother will each have a rose to place there as well.

Also, he isn’t aware, but I’m putting a small locket with their pics on his bout. and giving him a hanky.  (I think we’re all going to need it.)

I think a tribute in whatever way makes you most comfortable is always appropriate.

Post # 9
776 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

I am so sorry about your loss.  I also lost my dad a few years ago and I am having my brother walk me down the aisle.  I decided to opt out of the father/daughter dance though and therefore my finance and Mother-In-Law are not doing a mother/son dance either.  We are definitley mentioning my dad in the program, pictures in the slideshow and hopefully lighting a candle for him.  Its was really sweet of you to think of your cousin’s feelings on it too. Best of luck!

Post # 10
1776 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2011

I’m sorry for your loss.  I also lost my father unexpectedly, so I plan to have my mother and/or stepfather walk me down the isle someday.  I plan to skip the father/daughter dance altogether, though.  I always get teary at weddings when I watch father/daughter dances because it makes me miss my dad.  Since my father isn’t here in person to share that dance with me, I’d rather not dance with someone else (and I hope my stepdad will not take offense to my decision.)  I also plan to have a locket on my bouquet. 

One big idea I’ve been seriously considering is getting married on his birthday.  His birthday falls on a Saturday night in 2011, which is the year my bf and I have talked about getting married. 

I would like to honor him in other ways, so I am very interested to hear everyone’s ideas, as well.

Post # 11
342 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2009

I’m so sorry to hear about your father.  I lost my mother in 2005, but something about planning the wedding made old wounds open up.  My advice is just to be honest with what you’re feeling, take your time to make decisions, and don’t do anything you’re not 100% comfortable with.

To honor my mother at the wedding, I had she and my dad’s wedding portrait on our guestbook table.  There were other pictures on the table, but the one of she and my dad defintley stood out to me and our friends and family who knew her.  I did this, because we had several wedding guests who have lost their mothers recently, and I didn’t want to do anything that would hit too close to home for them. 

Post # 12
1018 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2010

Oh, girls, I am so sorry to hear about your losses! I read all of these posts with tears in my eyes. I love the idea of leaving a chair open where he would have been, but I can also imagine that seeing that empty chair would be very impactful on the day of. Whatever you do, know how proud he would have been of his daughter and how happy he would be to know you are thinking of him on your special day.

Post # 13
101 posts
Blushing bee

I can certainly understand where you’re coming from.  My mom passed away in 1998, my dad in 2005 and my brother just died in June.  He was supposed to walk me down the aisle.  I am not sure how I’m going to get through the whole ceremony without totally losing it. 

I am going to have a red rose for all of them as well as my fiance’s brother who was killed about 20 years ago.  I’m also going to get those small frames to put on my flowers with their pictures in them.  I contemplated doing a power point type of presentation, but I can’t do that and go through with it.

My heart’s breaking at the thought of them not being there and having to walk down in front of all of those people without being a total basketcase is beyond me.  

So, I understand what you’re going through.  It’s supposed to be the happiest day of your life, but you are filled with such a profound sadness.  My heart goes out to you and to everyone who is without a cherished loved one on their day.  

Post # 14
2271 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

Oh I wouldn’t be upset at all if my Dad (who is also deceased) walked his niece down the aisle considering the circumstances. It is an HONOR. I am having a good friend, my mentor and former professor escort me down the aisle and he has said several times how honored he is that I asked him.

Post # 15
666 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2010

I lost my dad in 2000.  You don’t have to do a F/D dance.  You could skip it all together.  Or, you could do a "family dance."  Your groom could dance with his mom.  You could dance with his dad or your uncle.  Your mom could dance with whichever you don’t dance with, and so on so that everyone is included. 

We will probably do the family dance at our wedding. 

Post # 16
3 posts
  • Wedding: September 2020

Reading your posts is really helpful – thank you. My dad died at the end of May – 3 weeks after I became engaged. We decided to be married this February so our family and friends will have something beautiful and joyous to look forward to – hopefully we can use some of the tributes mentioned above to honor him during the ceremony. I can’t imagine dancing with anyone but him, so am thinking of having a group dance with my bro, sis, & mom to something fun (that he would have rocked out to with us). A little Mick Jagger might do the trick Smile I’m also planning on reading a quote he loved during the service. Does anyone have any ideas on ways to show reverence to him on the actual wedding invitation? I don’t like the idea of only having my mom’s name on it since they’ve been a “team” for so long….

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