Gay Wedding Photos by Glenn Guiao
Disclaimer: The photo above does not depict the couples mentioned in this article. It is included solely for illustrative purposes, while certain Reddit threads I discovered online have proven useful.
Hi, so genuine question because my boyfriend (he/him) and I (He/They) plan on getting married but we have no idea how to handle the traditional processional where a father walks the bride down the aisle, we also have the extra hurdle of not wanting the other to feel feminized because we are also both trans masc. I have thought about the idea of me biting the bullet and doing it since out of the two of us my father is still alive. only issue with that is where his mother is very accepting of our identity my dad is a bit old fashioned.
Don't get my wrong my parents love me, they love my boyfriend (or at least my dad does, mom is a bit iffy but that's a mess I won't get into) and they aren't trying to make me convert or anything but they continuously dead name me and misgender me (never my boyfriend though so). I simply don't want to give my family another feminine thing to link to me, my sister is already trying to push for one of us to wear a dress (not happening, we are both going in suites).
Is there anyone here who has had or has been to a wedding where they found some kind of alternate option to the processional that feels just as special, or perhaps if anyone has an idea of what might work?
Edit: no one said anything about it but I thought I should say, I'm not taking away my dad's chance to walk his child down the aisle, I have an older sister who has already been married.
Second edit: thank you all so much for the ideas so far it warms my heart truly, I can't wait to start discussing the various ideas mentioned with him (I particularly like us simply walking down together that some of you mentioned) you've all been a huge help, again thank you!
You can walk with each other down the aisle! I've seen a few queer couples do this and think it's sweet. Or your partner can walk down the aisle with his mom and you can walk down with both your parents. I have been to weddings where the groom has escorted both parents down the aisle.
We really didn’t like the idea of the bride walking down with her father because of the whole “father giving his daughter away to another man” idea, not only because it’s so antiquated and patriarchal, but also because, well, um, there is no man. After some deliberation, we opted to swap dads. Yup. She’s going to walk down with my dad, and I’m going to walk down with her dad.
I know your partner’s dad has passed, but what about going with each other’s mom? Since you mentioned that your mom does seem to like him… or at least, can seem to not deadname and misgender him. Obviously I don’t know your relationship with his mom, but maybe that could be an option for you two!
I’ve always wanted to walk down with BOTH of my parents, just because I’ve always felt that both of my parents were equally instrumental in my upbringing, just in different ways. But it wasn’t going to be an option for my partner because her parents are divorced and her dad remarried and it would just be super awkward for her parents. Plus her mom has a serious knee problem and needs a cane to walk, and cannot stand for more than 2 minutes at a time without being in severe pain.
We liked the idea of having each of our moms walk us down, since neither of us have a wedding party, just our sisters as the two maids of honor (since they will be the witnesses for when we go to sign the paperwork) and for it to just be 6 women standing up there would be cute for a lesbian wedding! But I was concerned about her mom’s knee, and the fact that she will most definitely insist on trying to walk without her cane.
I just don’t really have that kind of relationship with my dad. It would just feel too much like we are acting and playing a part that doesn’t feel authentic at all, and I really don’t want to have to do that at my own wedding. Even though I do identify as a woman, he raised me more like a son than a daughter… for example, when I first came out to him as a teenager, he was elated and said “now we can watch women’s hockey together and take turns rating how hot the players are!!!” LOL
Anyways OP, people have given lots of great ideas to consider! I hope I was able to open up some additional ideas, from one queer to another :) hope you have an absolute blast and I know your wedding will be amazing no matter what! Much love!
Just as a note, you can still do the traditional outfit shopping even if there isn't a dress. My husband and his groomsman had a whole day are of their suit shopping. Just because its not a dress doesn't mean you can't try on clothes and have fun!
As fun as the thought is, I worry about my mother's comments on me being trans and trying to talk me into a dress, but also by the time I'm getting married I'll be a few states away so it wouldn't be practical for her to come visit for suit shopping (though I may still offer I'll have to see how I feel when that gets closer)
I think this is an issue cis brides also struggle with. Being walked down the aisle and given away to the groom like property being handed from one man to another is kind of messed up when you think about it, but involving parents is also a nice tradition.
Some options would be for both of you to have both parents walk you down the aisle, or have the parents process first and then you could each walk by yourself. Or parents could just sit down and not process. Or you and your fiancé could walk down together. I’ve seen people on this sub talk about doing every possible variation and they’re all valid.
The last wedding I went to was for a good straight female friend who married a Jewish man. To incorporate both sides, they pick traditions they could agree on. One was that both parents walked each one (bride and groom) down the aisle.
Honestly? Throw out the things that don't work for you and start from the ground up.
What do you want to processional to be? What are the moments that you want to create?
What are the feelings that you want to have? Is it just a fun parade of the two of you and your friends/family? Or do either of you want a big dramatic moment and then getting to soak in a lot of attention?
Even when there is a bride you don't have to follow the "bride" script.
- What we did: We just walked in together. All of our parents had other roles in the wedding (readings, speeches, etc) because we wanted to involve them, but we wanted to enter together because it just didn't feel right any other way for us. This was something we were embarking on together, as a team, and as equals, and we didn't feel the need to incorporate any kind of "giving away" symbolism.
- At another wedding I've seen: at one of my friends weddings, the bride walked down one side with her parents and the groom down the other with his, this worked well because it was an outdoor wedding with loads of space either side. After the ceremony they then exited down the aisle together - this felt really lovely because it really felt like a uniting of two families, which was beautiful and meaningful for them.
- Other alternatives: you could walk in each with your parents, one after the other (so you go down the aisle with your parents, and then your partner walks down with their mum, or vice versa), you could walk in together but have your parents meet you at the end of the aisle, or you could have each of your parents walk down the aisle ahead of you as part of the wedding party.
Mid-thirties here and recently married…my husband walked down the aisle with both his parents and I walked down the aisle with both my parents. This way there was nothing gendered about it, and it was nice to include all the parents (whom we have great relationships with).
My fiancée (F) and I (NB/AFAB) ran into this problem as well. Some options to consider:
-Just don’t. It’s your wedding. Your family is already unsupportive.
Don’t give into them, this is your day. If you don’t want a processional just don’t do it. Keep them on an information diet. “We’re still deciding…” “it’s an option we’re considering…” etc. and just refuse to give a straight answer. (Pun intended)
-Walk down the aisle together. This one’s actually becoming more common in cis/het weddings as well. The whole “giving away” thing is based in misogyny and ownership and kinda gives the ick anyway.
-Choose a friend. If you’re doing groomsmen you could use your best man, or you could pick any close friend really.
My fiancée and I both want to do one. Neither of us like the tradition of the father giving away the bride given the roots of it. My best friend is officiating and I plan to walk with him. My fiancée’s parents are divorced and she’s much closer to her mom than her dad but doesn’t want to have to choose between them. She’s walking with her sister/MOH instead.
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