Stepparents play an important role in the lives of many. When it comes to planning a wedding, there are ways to include stepparents in the wedding to help them feel just as important as the biological parents. There are several ways to include stepparents in a wedding.
Stepparents can be included in a wedding by sharing a special dance, giving them a special present, and including them in the wedding’s planning process. Stepparents can also be included in a wedding by providing them with special clothing or accessories to wear, as well as including them in photos.
It’s natural to want to include stepparents in our wedding, and it’s also common to feel a bit awkward about how to go about doing that.
There are things you can do to make your stepparents feel just as special as your biological parents.
And if you by chance don’t get along with your stepparents, simply being pleasant and ensuring peace on your special day will be all that is needed.
How to Include Stepparents in a Wedding
Stepparents can be involved in a wedding in a variety of ways to make them feel valued and included on your big day.
Let’s look at a few ideas for including your stepparents in your wedding.
Share a special dance
If you and your stepparents have a very close relationship, include them in your honor dances.
You can have a separate honor dance with your stepparent, or you can choose a longer song for your parent’s dance and join them halfway through.
As a gesture of your gratitude, give them a gift
Include your stepparents in any wedding-day gift-giving, especially if they helped prepare your big day.
Two adorable options are embroidered handkerchiefs with a special message or a picture frame with a family photo. Here’s where you can see more of our favorite stepfather gifts.
What if my stepparent and I don’t get along?
If your relationship with your stepparents hasn’t always been smooth, try to maintain a pleasant attitude and be as open as you feel comfortable.
Include them in the process of planning
Much of this is depending on your and your family’s relationships, but the most important thing is that you accept your parents’ and stepparents’ feelings—if they want to be engaged, that’s great; if they don’t, that’s fine too.
You can invite parents and stepparents to join you on venue visits, dress shopping, and other events if everyone gets along (or can at least behave civilly).
It may, however, be more practical to share responsibilities—for example, you and your mother may go clothing shopping while your stepmother attends the dish tasting.
You could also assign tasks to both parents and stepparents, such as crafting favors or welcome packages.
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Include them in your invitations if you want to be extra creative
Your stepparents will almost certainly appear on your wedding invitation, especially if they are financially contributing to the event (and thus “hosting” it).
If both parents and stepparents are involved, list each party (including stepparents) on a separate line.
Give them clothes or accessories that are one-of-a-kind
If your stepparents have any reservations about how to dress, you can help them make the proper decision. Give them a color palette to work with that complements your wedding’s color scheme but isn’t the same as your bridesmaids, groomsmen, or parents’ attire.
If any other members of the family are wearing boutonnieres or corsages, they should also be given boutonnieres or corsages.
Permit them to walk down the aisle
You’ve seen photos of the bride’s father taking the bride’s stepfather’s hand and walking her down the aisle together during the wedding ceremony.
We recommend planning ahead of time if at all possible, even if this was an unanticipated (and fantastic!) occasion. Stepparents might play a variety of roles in your profession.
The only person who can walk you down the aisle is your stepfather. Your stepfather and father can walk on opposing sides of you, or your stepfather can walk halfway and your father will walk behind him.
If your parents are courteous, you can even have your mother and father go down the aisle with you while your stepparents walk separately.
Select the style that best meets the demands of your family.
Everyone should be photographed
Inform the photographer about your family structure ahead of time so that he or she can assist you in creating photos that will appeal to all family members.
The most important thing is to be as open as possible.
Do Stepparents Sit at the Top Table?
If you are close with your stepparents or they have financially contributed to your wedding, it may be the right thing to do.
Having stepparents at the head table eliminates uncomfortable seating arrangements and ensures that everyone (or most of them!) is happy on the big day.
It’s also fine if you want to sit at a smaller top table with only your immediate family.
Traditionally, the bride’s mother sits next to the groom’s father at the top table, and vice versa, so don’t be concerned about your divorced parents sitting close to each other.
If you’re thinking about doing this, chat to your parents and stepparents about it before the big day to make sure no one is offended or upset.
It’s entirely up to you at the end of the day. Every wedding is different, and you must have a good time on your special day.
Consider the following options if you’re still undecided.
Many modern weddings choose a ‘sweetheart table instead of a top table where only the newlyweds sit. This is a superb choice that will greatly simplify seating configurations.
You’ll also get some quality time alone with your partner after the wedding ceremony, which will be lovely!
Alternatively, rather than dividing people into separate groups, large tables at your venue where everyone can sit together would be a better option.
It makes everyone feel included, and it prevents tension from being caused by divorced or remarried parents (or anyone for that matter).
How to List Stepparents on the Wedding Program
A component of the wedding program normally includes the names of the bride and groom’s parents. The stepparents may or may not be included in this section.
The bride’s father and his new wife, for example, would be listed on one line, and her mother and her spouse on the next.
If you use this strategy, you won’t have to say that those folks are stepparents because your guests will figure it out.
Some couples include a section in their wedding program called “Honorable Mentions” for close friends or family members who aren’t recognized anywhere else.
You could provide a list of your stepparents in this section. The name of the person and their link to the bride and groom are commonly mentioned.
This is the ideal option if the stepparent is no longer married to the biological parent but is still close to the pair.
If one of the biological parents has a grudge against the stepparent, include him or her here, and only the biological parents with the rest of the wedding party.
Where Do Stepparents Sit at a Wedding?
Approximately half of today’s households have gone through a divorce. Combining families is difficult enough on its own, let alone having to plan a wedding where things can get awkward. Where do stepparents sit at a wedding, for example?
Weddings are stressful enough as it is. Worrying over where to seat stepparents can add a lot of stress to the wedding preparation process. While planning a wedding is joyful, family difficulties can cause anxiety and fear.
Every family has its unique personality and set of problems. Some families, for example, have a high level of mutual regard.
They acknowledge that the biological parents are the most important, but they also value the contributions of the step-parents.
This can be accomplished by assigning major duties to stepparents in the wedding to make them feel important and involved.
On the other hand, other families have a lot more issues to deal with. There may still be a lot of fury or hurt in the air. How do you treat everyone with the respect they deserve without insulting them or adding fuel to the fire?
Because each family is distinct, the solutions to a pleasant wedding may be varied as well.
Your stepparent should sit beside your parent at the wedding if he or she has remarried or has a new partner. They can, however, sit wherever they want if they’re just dating.
If you want them to be near to your parents, they can sit in the second row, just behind them, or they can sit wherever they wish. Please bear in mind that the ceremony is usually brief, so whatever you choose will be brief as well.
Parents are normally seated in the front row. You should, however, separate the parents if they are divorced and their connection is strained.
Because she is the one who gave birth to you, I always place the mother on the aisle in this situation. I will occasionally arrange grandparents or children between divorced couples to offer a buffer zone.
Make every effort to make the day easier for everyone.