(Closed) Should estranged father walk me down aisle?

posted 6 years ago in Emotional
Post # 3
Member
1015 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

I think this is entirely up to you – to hell with tradition! Do whatever will cause you the least stress. 

Post # 4
Member
459 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I’m gonna say ‘NO.’ My father and I don’t really have anything that resembles a relationship. My mother keeps him informed on my happenings and I get the whole bday card and call each year, but that’s pretty  much it. I don’t resent the guy…I’m just disinterested. My mom has already let him know he’s not walking me down the aisle and part of me feels awful…I think as a father that has got to be such a heartbreaking thing to hear and such an eye opener. But I really felt that I did not want to honor him like that on such an important day. I didn’t want to make him think that I consider him a dad, because I don’t. It’s not like he raised me then left or anything like that…our relationship has been the same since I was born (my parents were never married and stopped dating while my mom was pregnant). He has another family that doesn’t even know about me or my twin brother! I’m sure he’s a great father to them, so I’ll let them take care of validating him.

My uncle will be walking me down the aisle, and in my mind, he really is the most appropriate. I also considered walking alone or having my mom walk me (what a great honor for a single mom!).

It is your day, so do what you want…as you said. Is having your father walk you down the aisle going to be one of those things you look back on a say to yourself, ‘I wish I didn’t ask him?’

Post # 5
Member
4520 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

I think if you’re feeling that you want him to walk you, you should ask him. Your wedding is indeed a great opportunity to rekindle an estranged relationship — if that’s what you want. I wouldn’t think about it in terms of whether he “deserves” it or not, because to me that’s irrelevant. I haven’t necessarily deserved all the second chances I’ve gotten in life…

Post # 6
Member
4327 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: January 1992

@karmalkween:  This is a tricky question; I had the same issues answering it myself. I toiled over it for weeks, if not months. And I decided I would walk myself down the aisle, because it didn’t seem right when my father was so lacklustre in caring about how I grew up, or how I was doing as an adult. And then it was affirmed that I made the right decision (which I kept to myself, btw) because my father wound up not even showing up to the wedding.

Do you think your situation might wind up like that? If you feel it in any way as a possibility, I think you know your answer. But if your father has shown a genuine interest in you, and is receptive to rekindling a relationship (even if he isn’t strong enough to do it himself, you can usually tell when someone is interested) I don’t see the harm in considering it.

But I wouldn’t let the wedding / aisle walking be the initiation for the rekindling. You are getting married in July, so you have some time to start fortifying your relationship now, and you can gauge where it’s going. Consider it a “trial” period. Try working on your communication, try working on consistency with him, and if he is receptive, seems to genuinely welcome you into his life and make active efforts to keep you there and engadge you out of genuine interest rather than out of a sense of perfunctory duty or guilt, then all signs point to yes. If you sense any hesitation from him, or just don’t feel like he’s 100% committed to getting to know you as an adult and he’s not putting forth the effort, I say don’t do it.

 

Post # 7
Member
2459 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2010

I wouldn’t, because to me giving someone away means that they looked after them before….by the sounds of it he didn’t

I had always intended to have either my grandfather or mum walk me down, unfortunately they both passed b4, so I walked it solo. It was really fitting.

Post # 8
Member
266 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

I had a similar issue with the dance.

But I’ve come to know that he’s been so up and down my ENTIRE life that either way I’m going to have to be firm on the subject. But I know I would be furious if I  let him walk me/dance with me and then he started acting like himself…can’t get him out of the photos. Not how I want to capture my day.

Post # 9
Member
4327 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: January 1992

@WILLIAKELLLB:  Good point. If you have any hesitation, or if there’s a chance of any hurt feelings, those pictures are FOREVER! and could potentially rub salt in the wound always.

 

Post # 10
Member
177 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I personally had a great relationship with my dad when I was young, but we haven’t had much of a relationship for the past 8 or so years (about the amount of time my Fiance and I have been together.)  I thought about what having someone walk you down the aisle is supposed to signify, and I think that it’s about someone who’s really taken care of you and been your main support system “giving you away” to your new partner. 

For me, that person is my mom, so she will be walking me down the aisle!

Post # 11
Member
6015 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: March 2012

I’m gonna say … YES … it’s not a ..does he deserve it kind of thing … it’s more like your relationship has changed .. you could use this as a bonding moment to build for the future.  It seriously is like 4 min of your life…

Post # 12
Member
282 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

I know that I never planned to have my father walk me down the aisle (wanted my mother to do it because she was the one that raised me and made me into the person that I am, so I think that she deserves that honor), but I know that I struggled as to whether or not to invite my father to the wedding. I weighed the drama that would be caused against whether it was worth it to have him there. I decided that it was not worth it.

Think about what you would be giving up vs what you would be gaining. I think that having him walk you down the aisle would be an opportunity to rekindle your relationship and if that’s what you want, it’s not a bad reason to have him walk you down the aisle. But not having him walk you down the aisle could have the potential to be hard to recover from. Who would you have instead of him? That might be a good question to ask yourself. 

I hope that my rambling has helped you a little… good luck and hope all works out!

Post # 13
Member
1577 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

@little_cricket:  My story is almost identical… my parents were never married & stopped dating while my mom was pregnant.  My dad has two other daughters (with other women), but they’re both much older than me & I think they’re both married.  I’m pretty sure he didn’t get to walk either of them down the aisle.  Part of me feels bad for being his “last chance” & not letting him.  But I really feel like it would be a big lie– on my wedding day, none the less!  I don’t want anything fake or ingenuine at my wedding.  My father & I are not close AT ALL.  He’ll be there, but I just don’t think it would be right for him to “give me away” when he didn’t even raise me.

I’m going down the aisle alone.  I briefly considered having my mom walk me, because we ARE close & she’s done everything for me.  But there’s a big part of me that just doesn’t like the whole being “given away” thing at all.  Maybe I just feel too old for it, since I’ve been out of my mom’s house for 11 years, LoL. 

Post # 14
Member
1106 posts
Bumble bee

I think you should talk to your Fiance and mom about it as well as your Maid/Matron of Honor so that you can see how they would feel about it.  Yes it is your wedding but those first two people are also extremely important in your wedding and you don’t want to offend anyone.  That being said, I would say write down the reasons why you DO want him to walk you and DON’T.  Just think about it, talk about it, even talk to yourself about it.

Just give yourself a deadline of like, 2 weeks so mid-Februray and also think if there is anyone else you would prefer over him (You could even have your mom walk you!) to walk you.  Please let us know what you decide!

Post # 16
Member
13014 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

It’s 100% your call.  Could you do something with him walking you part of the way, and walk the remainder on your own?  I saw it on Four Weddings (they used it to symbolize that family can only get you so far, and you do the rest on your own) and thought it was actually a pretty cool idea.

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