Post # 16
Thank you everyone for your input. It’s very helpful to get outsiders’ perspectives!
BibbidiBobbidiBoop : This is a lovely idea. The ceremony site (a huge lawn in front of an inn) doesn’t lend itself to this exactly, but I will give it some thought to see if I could do something like this and still include my step-mom in the processional without pulling in someone else to escort her (she would hate walking alone, and it’s a verrrry long, visible walk from the start of the processional to the front of the aisle). Thank you for the food for thought.
milena : Thank you, egalitarian and authentic is what I’m aiming for 🙂
sweatergal007 : Thank you for sharing your story, that certainly puts things into perspective, and I’m sending you a virtual hug. A father daughter dance is in the plan. I know what you mean about people taking it personally when you go outside of tradition. A lot of “traditional” rituals in weddings don’t speak to me or my Fiance, so our thoughts were to take what works and either alter or throw away what doesn’t. My plans always seem perfectly reasonable in my head until I say them out loud and am met with bewilderment!
garnobella : I appreciate what you said, it makes perfect sense. And I think it’s taken me so long to talk to him because I do want to make sure that it’s more important for me to do it this way than it is for me to presumably avoid hurting him. I just keep going to back to both wanting to include everyone in the processional and being true to the relationship with my FI.
Post # 17
gooseplusgander : Is your father contributing to the wedding financially? If so, I think he has a ‘right’ to walk you down the aisle.
If you guys are paying yourselves, then to me it makes more symbolic sense to walk down together. I think you should tell your father that as soon as possible, just rip it off like a bandaid.
For me personally, although my dad and I have a strained relationship, I could never imagine slighting him in front of our family by not letting him walk me down the aisle. My family is super traditional, and they would all see it as a rejection of him. Please consider if your family might think the same?
Post # 18
gooseplusgander : This idea might be a little out there. How about doing a first look with your dad? I’m sure you could schedule the day so that you could do this in addition to doing a first look with your Fiance, if you are choosing to do one of those. That would provide you with some special time alone before the ceremony, just you and your dad.
If you schedule this right before you have to get to your places, your dad could walk you to where you need to be for the processional and then meet your stepmom there and walk down the aisle with her.
Alternatively, if you are doing a first look with your Fiance, you can do a first look with your dad first, and he can walk you to your first look with your Fiance.
Here are a few examples: http://www.southernbrideandgroom.com/father-daughter-first-look/ or http://www.bridalguide.com/blogs/bridal-buzz/first-look-with-dad
Post # 19
gooseplusgander : It’s tough huh! I ended up staying traditional because I feel like Fiance will walk out of the church as one unit. We will be a new family. Walking with my agai would be more co for table, but if it hurts my dad’s feelings it just isn’t worth it to me. Trying to keep everyone happy can be impossible though, so do what feels most natural.
Post # 20
youngbrokebride : no man has a ‘right’ to anything a woman doesn’t want, father or not.
Post # 21
thirdwoman : I disagree. If a father is financially funding his daughters wedding, then he has a say in whether he ‘gives her away’ or not.
Post # 22
youngbrokebride : women are not property you know!
Post # 23
- Wedding: September 2017 - Poppy Ridge Golf Course
youngbrokebride : No, just no. Giving a female human being away has nothing to do with whether or not the father has financially contributed to a wedding. He has a right to do so? Really? smh I cringed reading your logic. This is a tradition stemming from a time when unwed daughters were their fathers property until marriage, they were then given to their husbands as property and the father is the one who generally benefitted financially. He was not the contributor but the property owner as this was a transfer of ownership. Most people rarely view it this way nowadays but thats the foundation of this tradition and you’re wrong.
Post # 24
youngbrokebride : Me and my fi are walking together down the aisle. I am no ones property and tradtions are often rooted in sexism.
My dad physically and emotional abused me my whole childhood and we don’t talk now more than a polite hi. He has made no effort to repair what he did (hasn’t even asked for my phone number). However, that doesn’t stop him always taking credit for anything good that happens in my life.
My mom and him are still married and I get along with my mom. She insisted on paying for the wedding (my brothers both went to expensive colleges that they paid for and I paid everything including college myself after moving out at 18). I protested her paying but in the end it felt like I was hurting her by saying no. So I guess by extension my dad is paying.
By no means is that awful man “being honored” to walk me down the aisle.
You should feel free to do what you want at your wedding and no one should be able to buy influence over you.
Post # 25
thirdwoman : heavenlyflower : I am well aware that women aren’t property in the Western world anymore, thanks! People don’t typically smell bad either, but bridesmaides still carry bouquets? I’m sure all you feminists forewent an engagement ring too since they are rooted in sexist tradition?
You know what else is rooted in sexist tradition? The father of the bride paying for the wedding.
My dad is contributing to our wedding, so even though he is not my first pick to walk me down the aisle, I spoke to him and he said he wanted to do it, so that’s what we will do. If I was completely against it, I would rather downsize my wedding and pay for it myself. Then, no pay, no say.
Either way, it’s probably a moot point since from what the OP has said, she has not indicated that her father is paying for the wedding. I only shared my opinion because I considered either walking down alone, or with my grandmother.
Post # 26
Let him walk you down the aisle. I think it could really deeply hurt him a lot more than it could ever hurt you to let him do it.
Post # 27
I walked down the aisle to my now ex-H by myself. I explained reasons for it to my mom and included tons of reasons that had nothing to do w not being as close to my dad or having issues w him (even though those were also part of the reasons). I explained that I was fine w whatever anybody else wanted to do for their wedding, but I felt a bit too old for that and personally didn’t want some of the meaning behind that being a part of me and my now-ex’s day. There was also some discord in my now-ex’s family, so I said that we were decreasing the roles of parents to not highlight potential huge differences in the roles that his parents would play (not being there or not walking down aisle or leaving or taking selfies during the short ceremony w a huge iPad or who knows what- those ppl were crazy). So parents had special seats in front and only bridesmaids & groomsmen walked down the aisle before I walked by myself. This was still the best way to handle it all IMO and it was fine. There also weren’t any mother-son, father-daughter dances (or bouquet toss or garter belt). (But my dad and ex aren’t really into dancing anyway.)
My younger sister married before me knowing that I wouldn’t have our dad walk me down the aisle, she did. She made net decision and I made mine. We never argued w e/o over it or tried to change e/o’s minds. And I’m going to have to tell my dad (probably through my mom) again when I get married in the spring (to a much better guy than my ex).
Some cultures/churches have a tradition of doing this- where the bride and groom walk down the aisle together. I loved the first wedding where I saw this. Much easier to see both of their faces at the same time and get all that happiness and gorgeousness in one photo too. Best of luck in whatever you decide to do.
Post # 28
youngbrokebride : re the engagement ring, you’re spot on, I don’t have one. I won’t have a wedding ring either.
Post # 29
OP, I totally agree with the advice you stated in your OP that you had already received from someone: state it in terms of what IS happening, rather than what is not. To that end, while I think the phrasing one of the PP’s gave you is very helpful, I’d suggest even doing away with the part where it says, “instead of you walking me down the aisle.” I understand you are concerned your dad will feel slighted, and like you are taking something away from him. What you need to do is not buy into that way of thinking. Your decision as to your wedding processional has nothing to do with your dad, and everything to do with you and your Fiance. I feel the “instead of you walking me down the aisle” phrasing has the ring of you making a decision specifically because you want to avoid walking with your dad – when actually, at least according to my understanding, you’ve made your decision because that’s what you think represents you best as a couple. Does this make sense? It is a subtle but important difference.
You can acknowledge that your processional is different than the norm, generally speaking, but don’t preemptively apologize as if even you believe you’re doing something wrong. I suggest taking a very positive approach when you discuss this with your dad. Perhaps something like, “We have a great plan for our processional! It represents how we are as a couple and is very family oriented” (because it is!) Then go into the explanation of how it will work, and emphasize that you really want everyone to walk in with their own partner (after all, that really meaningful because you’re there to celebrate your partnership with your FI), and how much you love the idea of the whole family verbally affirming they accept a new family member.
I think it’s a great idea, personally. You’re not doing this to purposely slight your dad, so don’t sheepishly act like that’s what you’re doing, you know?
Best of luck!
Post # 30
I agree. I know my father would be extremely hurt if I told him I didn’t want him to walk me down the aisle.
OP: I understand your reasons for it, but will it really upset you that much to let him do it? Is it worth the potential fall out? It’s completely your choice what you do on your wedding day, but I would really think hard about this because it means A LOT to some fathers.