Okay, guys – there is a topic that I have been avoiding in all this wedding talk: parents in the wedding.
We are sort of a fragmented family, and we have not always been this way. Fancee’s and my families are fragmented in different ways, too, and that makes it hard to always understand where the other person is coming from. I have two parents who have recently separated, and are undergoing the painful process of examining their marriage through a new lens, and figuring out how to handle their relationship. Of course, this also affects our (my siblings’ and my) relationships with them, and our relationships with our significant others. I’ve talked about this a little before, so I won’t go into it too much here.
Fancee has one parent. She has her mother, and her only other family is her grandfather.
Here’s how this all relates to our wedding (besides, you know, weddings are about family, blah blah blah): I would love to have our families walk us down the aisle. I love the symbolism and ritual not of “handing off” from father to husband (um, obviously not applicable here), but of branching off of one family to form a new family. I love the idea of walking in with the family that raised you and walking out with the family you are creating. I love inviting your community to affirm and – in whatever way is appropriate for them – bless this change, and to show the change, to really have a representation of that in the ceremony.
The thing is, we’re just not sure how to do it.
We could walk ourselves down the aisle, and I suppose that has some symbolism – coming from our own individual places and then joining together as a family… I could get behind that. We could walk in with our moms – but then does Dad feel left out? Walk in with siblings? Well, Fancee doesn’t have any siblings.
Who better to ask than the diverse and wedding-invested members of the internet? What have you done? If you haven’t done it, what are you thinking of doing?
On the plus side: someone asked recently if one of our families was the “primary” family and it made me realize how much we are making ourselves the primary family. We are definitely supported by all three of our parents, and by my siblings, and by our close friends. But now I feel like we are pulling each other closer – this is where our family will be, and this is the sturdiest place to lean on right now. And I think that that is something of a blessing in itself.
(Uh, yes, we did have professional family photos done with our dog. We are so dorky! And cute, right? Right? Doesn’t Daphne look good at least?)