Who Will Walk Me Down the Aisle?
The answer to this question isn't as straight forward as it used to be. Traditionally, it is the father of the bride who walks the bride down the aisle and gives her away. Now, in an ever-changing world of divorce, family tensions, re-marriages, and couples marrying at an older age, the choice of who "walks the walk" may not be so simple. Here are some things to consider.
Divorce and Family Tensions
Your parents are divorced, and you've lived with your Mom your whole life. You want your Dad to walk you down the aisle because you don't want to deny him this privilege, but you also feel that your Mom should give you away because, hey, she was the one who raised you. Many brides today have both parents walk them down the aisle, so each parent feels honored. There are also cases where the bride's father has not been a part of her life at all, so she chooses to have her mother walk her down the aisle, honoring only her for all her devoted love and hard work.
It is also common for a bride to be escorted down the aisle by both her natural father and her stepfather. Yes, her father is her true father no matter what, but what about the man who raised her in his absence? Some brides want to honor him as well. You can opt to have your natural father walk you down the aisle for the first half, then have your stepfather "pick up where he left off". Some brides may not want to have to choose between the two, so she will ask her godfather or brother to walk her down instead.
Whatever you decide, talk to your family members well in advance if you are afraid of offending someone, and explain to them openly and honestly why you have made the decision you've made. Ideally, they will respect your feelings and put aside any objections they may have because it is your day. If they can't do that, then they'll just have to live with it because it is your wedding, and you have made the right decision for you.
Re-Marriages & Getting Married at an Older Age
This is your second marriage, and you feel kind of funny having your Dad give you away again. Or you've been living on your own for years, and it doesn't seem to make sense to you that your father walks you down the aisle when you're a mature woman and not "a little girl" anymore. Well, this is where your groom can step in. A popular solution to dilemmas like these is to have your groom meet you halfway down the aisle. This will symbolize your independence as well as symbolize the strong union the two of you have - that he has come to meet you. There have also been ceremonies where the bride and groom have decided to walk down the aisle together to demonstrate their equal commitment and partnership.
In these days, nothing is surprising anymore. Circumstances are what they are and exceptions to traditional rules are made everyday. Everyone understands because divorce, family tensions, and re-marriages have affected us all. It is important that you make the best possible decision for yourself. You will treasure and remember your wedding day more than anyone else. Make the best decision you can under your given circumstances. If your reasons are honest and from the heart, your choices will be the right ones.
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