Just Said Yes April 2020

Mom Doesn't Want to Walk Me Down Aisle with Dad

Ashley, on February 19, 2020 at 10:01 PM Posted in Family and Relationships 0 8
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So I'm getting married in two months, and instead of just having my father walk me down the aisle, I would really prefer to have both of my parents walk me down the aisle. But when I bring this idea up with my mom, she says she doesn't want to be the one to "give me away".

My parents are not divorced, and I have a decent relationship with my dad. Things were rocky when I was younger, but we get along well now. I would definitely like him to walk with me, but I don't feel comfortable with this idea that I'm being "given away" (I'm not), and I also feel that since both parents are responsible for my life, for raising me and for helping shape me into the person that I am, it feels right to honor them both. But my mom seems to think this isn't what her role should be.

And then of course there are other family members of mine, who are also on the more traditional side, who have weighed in and said that by asking my mom to also walk with us, it would be taking something away from my dad or diminishing his role and that walking me down the aisle is really more for him than it is for me. This blows my mind since it is my wedding, not to mention their opinions are entirely unsolicited.

As the bride (and as the person paying for the wedding), I kind of feel like my choice should be respected here, and I don't understand how anyone can be disappointed in me for wanting to honor BOTH parents instead of just one. Like, how I am in the wrong??
How can I convince my mom to walk with me and my dad down the aisle when she thinks this is something only my dad should do?


  • Erin
    Rockstar April 2022
    Erin ·
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    As unfortunate as it may be, you can't force her to do something that she doesn't want to do, or isn't comfortable doing. I'd suggest sitting down to talk with her, and explain why you feel strongly about wanting her to walk down with you too, and why it's important to you, but respect her wishes if she still doesn't want to.

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  • Hillary
    Expert September 2020
    Hillary ·
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    You should have a talk with your mom and really let her know you want her to walk you down with your dad. In Jewish tradition, both parents walk the bride down the aisle. So it’s not a weird thing.
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  • S
    December 2020
    Shelly ·
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    I am a MOB and don't want to walk my daughter down the aisle with my husband. I see it as his honor. I'm fine watching him proudly walk his baby girl down the aisle to her new husband. You mother might feel the same.

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  • Kristen
    Rockstar November 2020
    Kristen ·
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    Yes it is your wedding and you are paying for it but as the first poster said you cannot make them do something they don't want to. The best you can do is have a serious talk with your mother and explain your reasons why you want her to but if at the end of the day she doesn't feel comfortable doing it then you need to accept that. You have full Reign Over where you want your wedding to be and how you want the reception to be but in regards to certain roles you have some limitations. Really as mother of the bride she is supposed to show up looking nicely dressed and there to support you. I will say this. I understand your Viewpoint in in why you don't want your father to walk you down the aisle because you don't like the tradition of being given away but technically that is what it is. He is saying that your future husband is now going to be the man in your life to take care of you. I don't see it as an outdated tradition I think it's kind of sweet. But you could do something different to where it doesn't mean that but have you spoken to your father? How does he feel having someone else walk you down the aisle.? Maybe he didn't want that role for himself because you are his daughter?
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  • Laura
    VIP November 2019
    Laura ·
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    My Dad walked me down the aisle but the “Who gives this woman...” nonsense wasn’t spoken. He just walked me down the aisle, hugged me, shook H’s hand and exited. I wanted him there with me, but I’m not a piece of property to be given away. Maybe you could also skip the giving away language?
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  • Ashley
    Just Said Yes April 2020
    Ashley ·
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    Thanks, guys. I appreciate all of this insight. I just did not expect to be met with such confusion/pushback from my family on this. I thought I was just making a simple request, but you’re right - I can’t force her down the aisle with us. I just wish she weren’t prioritizing a tradition over what would actually be more meaningful to me. But at least she’ll still be there, and I am thankful for that.

    I will definitely be omitting the “who gives this woman away” language however. Tradition or not, that’s just not for me.
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  • Amy
    Beginner June 2021
    Amy ·
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    If your mom's not comfortable with this, there are many different ways you can honor her. Perhaps have her make a list of how she wants to be involved and then you can find some things that you both love. You could make your own speech and give tribute to each of your parents. She could give a speech about you/fiance. She could do a reading or I've seen mother's from each side light candles together etc.
    My parents had a very difficult divorce and no one in my family speaks to my father, which is his own doing. So I won't have a father to walk me down the aisle, which makes me very sad, and really sucks. But there are lots of people who love me that I can honor in different ways and will honor me. We will probably allow anyone in our family who wants to speak make a toast, not just 2 people Smiley smile
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  • J
    Master 0000
    Judith ·
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    You are not putting yourself in her shoes. Some people want to be participants, center stage, as much as possible. But many love to watch, take in every minute, from a guest or audience view.
    My mom was not interested in being seated last. Neither was my FMIL or FFIL. They wanted to be seated as in our culture, immediate family only on each side, you walk from your family to meet your mate. All others sit in front. And though I expected my mom to feel that way ( 5th kid to marry) my groom was used to a Catholic set up. And thought Mom would as usual, want to be seated last. But when my mom spoke up, my FMIL was excited. Priests would want it usual way. But in all her previous kids marriages, like my mom, she wanted to come in first, while no one was there. Just her husband and her on their side, and my mom and grandmother on their side. Sit there. Sit quietly, cry a little. See how beautiful everything looked. And from the side wing seats, watch every other guest walk in and be seated. And each of our mothers and FFIL would have felt deprived of this early review if we had wanted anything else. Neither of them wanted to be with BM and wedding party or groom. Neither wanted to be out front greeting guests. They had waited since we were babies with a vision. Fine with us. But an amazing number of people felt they needed to give their opinions. How disrespectful we were not to honor our parents, yada yada yada ... we respected and honored them enough to give them the view they wanted.
    **** As for not wanting to have Dad give you away: In our way, B and G enter each from their family side, or set up for side aisles. Bride walks with father, elderly family, or who they want. And walks the last few feet alone, escort taking his seat. Then the officiant asks, who has raised this woman ( man) to be an independent woman ( man) and presented her ( him) to be married. And in turn, the whole older family, or just parents, speak up, we have. Because hubby's parents originally wanted us married in the family Catholic church, which we did not even consider, we talked about setting it up as they wanted. But my FMIL had heard from Mom what our tradition was, and wanted that. My dad escorted me after BM, groom came in side with GM. But my family, then his, in turn, answered that they had raised me, etc. No being given away in marriage stuff. And we had walked away from our family to meet each other, first. Maybe your mom really wants to see Dad and daughter. But might agree to answer with your dad, something you make up, clear as your vows, where briefly both stand and say something about raising you, happy to see you marry today, whatever ( I am not suggesting words not your culture; for us, raising someone to full adulthood is "independent" , you go into marriage each leaving your families, to start your own home and family. But within your way of doing things, there likely is a way to include mom without her walking you. And indicate, you are an independent woman, choosing to move on , not given away. As others have said, don't try to push her to do what she does not want to do. Be a little more accommodating to her, let her watch you and Dad. But maybe say something, along with father. I have seen other people incorporate similar things, some women who walked down the aisle on their own by choice, some escorted.
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