Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Wedding etiquette is complicated enough during the most traditional of circumstances. Add parents who are exes, stepparents and battling checkbooks, and this special occasion can soon become a recipe for disaster. In order to avoid chaos, it is important to understand etiquette and most importantly for everyone involved in the wedding process to enjoy the celebration and play nice.


    Deciding what to write on wedding invitations can be a tricky decision when parents are divorced. According to mymarriage.com, if both parents are financially contributing to the wedding, it is customary for both names to be on the invitations, even if both sides are not contributing equally. If neither parent is paying for the big day, it is perfectly acceptable to send invitations announcing the marriage without including either family's name.


    Knowing where to sit at a child's wedding after a divorce is a common issue. If both parents are single, it is a good sign of camaraderie to sit together in the first row. This shows that both parents wish their child happiness and success, says bridalguide.com. If one party is remarried, it is normally proper for the mother and her guest to sit in the first row and the father and his escort to sit behind them in the second row.

Down the Aisle

    Although walking a child down the aisle is often a rite of passage for the biological father, it is still a decision the bride ultimately makes. If she prefers a step-parent to escort her, biological parents should respect that decision, says ourmarriage.com. With traditional rules being abandoned in favor of comfort, it is now customary for a bride to choose to walk down the aisle however she prefers; either alone, with her groom, with both biological parents or with a special friend.


    Stepparents can feel awkward at their stepchildren's weddings. They may feel unsure of what role to play or question if they should even be present. Other stepparents who have played more active roles in their children's lives may feel resentful that a biological parent is receiving all the attention and credit. Stepparents should be respectful toward biological parents during ceremonies, says mywedding.com, but they should also know they have a right to attend these functions and should feel comfortable doing so.


    With many couples waiting longer and longer to marry, it is becoming less important for their families to pay for their weddings. When children are older and have the financial means to pay for their own weddings, parents and stepparents can offer whatever financial support they desire. However, when the financial obligation falls on the parents, it is customary for all parties paying for the wedding to negotiate what they feel is fair. Bridalguide.com stresses that wedding contributions should not be made to make oneself appear better or to belittle another party. All resources should be provided with grace, including the nonfinancial ones like support, help with decision making and attendance.

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