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Julija
Devoted October 2023

Garter Toss Drama

Julija, on August 6, 2022 at 11:52 AM

Posted in Wedding Reception 55

So I have a peculiar situation. If you want the full detail read the following 2 paragraphs. If you just want the main issue look at the last one. Thank you in advance! I am Lithuanian-American and we are doing a lot of Lithuanian traditions throughout the ceremony and reception to include my...
So I have a peculiar situation. If you want the full detail read the following 2 paragraphs. If you just want the main issue look at the last one. Thank you in advance!


I am Lithuanian-American and we are doing a lot of Lithuanian traditions throughout the ceremony and reception to include my culture as that is a HUGE part of who I am. My FH is totally fine with it and supportive. Has vetoed some and on the fence about others, but the big ones I HAD to include he has agreed to no questions asked with minimal grumbling (he has to learn a traditional folk dance and he, and I quote, “Can’t dance worth a lick.”).
With this being said, he is also very American. I’m talking yee-haw, good old, raised right, southern boy. He actually is why we are doing a big wedding and not just eloping (would rather put the money towards a house but meh, hubby wants a party I’ll happily do a party). With this though, he does have a few American Christian based wedding traditions he wants to do, which I agree to and also have my minor grumbles (mainly about non-personalized vows), but I can’t get on board with one and it’s of course the one he wants to do most… the garter toss.
3 or 4 years ago I think I would have been fine, but I have been corner by all members of his family multiple times a year for over 7 years of dating this man talking about the importance of purity, or talking about is cuddling each other is inappropriate, how we should make sure not to kiss or hold hands in public, or we shouldn’t ever be alone in a room together, how we shouldn’t take trips together, trying to force a confession of sexual sin out of me by saying if I confess to them and then confess to God all will be forgiven, etc. I legit can no longer at his family functions sit side by side with him without having a panic attack. There has to be a space. I also will arrive and leave with him, but I make it a point to talk to other family members and have him approach me and initiate contact with me (my love language is physical touch). I will not DARE to make the 1st move for fear of family backlash (he doesn’t get the trips only I do). I told him point blank that if we do a garter toss at our wedding where he sticks even just his hand under my skirt I’m likely to have a full blown panic attack in front of everyone (his family is just under 100 people). I offered him to do a boutonniere toss, a baseball, football, etc, but he really wants to do the garter. He respects my wishes but I feel awful as he’s been so accommodating towards me, but I just can’t for the sake of my own mental health at the wedding do this one for him.
Does anyone have any advice or words of encouragement for this situation, because I feel so stuck.

55 Comments

  • Julija
    Devoted October 2023
    Julija ·
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    Thank you! 🥰💕💕
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  • Melissa
    Savvy September 2023
    Melissa ·
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    I'm actually surprised that a garter toss is considered Christian. I absolutely in no way shape or form will do one, and I will not compromise on it. Instead of a garter and boquet toss, we're doing a anniversary dance, where couples are asked to come out that have been married 1 year, 5 years, 15, and so on. The DJ will announce it throughout the song. I am fortunate that my fiancé agrees. If you're not comfortable doing it, you don't do it. Compromising is something you do when choosing paint colors, not pushing physical or emotional boundaries. He needs to respect your personal boundaries, period. I am sorry you're feeling so stressed about this. I am really concerned about the amount of boundary pushing here, but you know him best and sometimes things come across differently over text and to people who may not know you both well. But I really have to wonder what is so important about this that he would put it over your emotional wellbeing. Maybe I'm bias because the importance of tossing a piece of material seems insignificant compared to the feelings of my partner, so I just don't get it.

    I'm only sharing this because I've learned the extent of what not standing up for boundaries can lead to in extreme cases. I've unfortunately been married once before and I let so many of my boundaries be pushed and it wound up with me leaving for good out of a safety concern for both my physical and emotional wellbeing. Now I'm stubborn and if it's something that I cannot compromise on, I won't lol. Fortunately my fiancé appreciates that about me and says it's one of the things he loves most is my strength of character, and being honest about it in a way we can have a good conversation about it.

    As an alternate suggestion, you could put a different garter on your arm instead and have him throw that if he really wants to do it and leave the skirt alone. Definitely don't feel bad about setting boundaries. There have to be other ways that are actually compromise about this like the arm thing or other folk's suggestions.

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  • Michael
    VIP October 2023
    Michael ·
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    I too don't see how this might be considered a christian thing to do. Maybe the idea just got absorbed from European cultures, possible due to familiarity, and never really figured out for use in modern weddings. The garter toss at least became more associated with marital luck rather than warding off evil spirits. Still, it certainly is not something we have to keep doing. And it seems like the tradition is either fading or is being replaced. (I think people still like to get the bachelors and bachelorettes involved in some sort of ceremony.)

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  • Melissa
    Savvy September 2023
    Melissa ·
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    That makes sense I suppose. A good portion of European culture was influenced by the church, but that doesn't always mean the church did things that are necessarily God pleasing. We'll not talk about some of the less pleasant history here, but we're all human.


    I kinda like that people are coming up with new ways to honor some traditions and replace others. Like my fiance and I decided to do away with the bachelor/bachelorette party and we're all going to just go to like a Dave & Busters or something. Works out because I have a man of honor instead of a maid of honor and all of the folks we plan to ask happen to be gamers including the ladies. I actually learned the anniversary dance instead of the garter toss from another wedding too.
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  • Michael
    VIP October 2023
    Michael ·
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    Sure. We are not going to do any wild parties. It seems to backwards when these pre-wedding parties are perhaps to experience the last vestiges of freedom. Maybe this fits with some friends who just use these parties because they want to do that. (Now I'm thinking that some of this image of parties is simply due to movies more than reality.) But I'm introverted anyhow, so maybe that influences my ideas here.

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  • Julija
    Devoted October 2023
    Julija ·
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    Oh we aren’t doing the leg thing. He has never pushed to only do that. I’m the one who wants to do something for the both of us (I always loved the bouquet toss before we got married. Caught it three times 🥰). We actually agreed to a lace bracelet he would take off and do instead.
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  • Julija
    Devoted October 2023
    Julija ·
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    The thing connects to proof of virginity from back in the day.
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  • Michael
    VIP October 2023
    Michael ·
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    Yep that proof of virginity. (There were also multiple parts to this tradition that were discussed earlier.) I know some of that aspect of it, which goes back much further in time. But to have that private moment observed is bad enough. I mostly meant that the remaining parts of that -- the garter toss just lingered on beyond its time.

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  • Julija
    Devoted October 2023
    Julija ·
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    That’s so awesome! I love how people have been adapting things to suit
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  • Julija
    Devoted October 2023
    Julija ·
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    I hear you on that. We are doing crafting days instead of the parties. Like… travel with friends sounds nice, but it also sounds like drama and a lot of money being spent that could be put to better things.
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  • Julija
    Devoted October 2023
    Julija ·
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    Unfortunately that is so valid. It needs to go lol.
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  • Sky
    Just Said Yes October 2022
    Sky ·
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    What if you have a brand new garter, still in the package, and he opens it in front of everyone so they know he didn't take it off of you and toss that?

    Edit: I read through the rest of the thread and it looks like you came to a conclusion already. Glad you guys figured something out!

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  • Michael
    VIP October 2023
    Michael ·
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    Have you decided what you will be doing? Just the normal tradition, maybe?

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  • Sky
    Just Said Yes October 2022
    Sky ·
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    I'll be doing the normal tradition. Nothing over the top though like some people do. I just want him to get in, get the garter, and get out LOL. I enjoy the tradition, I'm just awkward.

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  • Michael
    VIP October 2023
    Michael ·
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    Some people are saying we should do it. But right. In a tamed down way, not over the top. So we are discussing it again. It is just a small moment of the wedding reception anyhow.

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