Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Need Your Advice as I Plan My Wedding

The wedding planning has begun.  We have a date, location, officiants and have begun many of the other items on the "to do" list.  When we told my parents, they were supportive and excited for us.  I wasn't completely surprised because our communication has been better, more respectful and more patient lately.  Not all smooth sailing (what parent relationship is even before factoring abusiveness), but not a nightmare either.

A bit of background;  so far I am planning to have my parents at the wedding.  I haven't decided yet what ritual roles they will be invited to participate in.  Right now, I don't feel a need to exclude them, nor do I want to make it obvious that I am limiting their role.  Those of my family and friends who know the history will understand what is happening and those who don't won't.  The day should be about J and I, not about "protecting" myself from my parents.  I plan to ask two friends to be on "parent patrol"  - prepared to intervene and step in if necessary. (One has already volunteered to do so.)  

So, here is my question. How have you navigated having abusers/parents at a wedding/important family event? I am confident that I (with help of my fiance and friends) feel safe and focused on the really important things that day.  It is the process of figuring out what I am comfortable with that I am less sure about.  For example, my finace would like a mother/son dance.  I don't particularly want to do father/daughter dance with my dad.  My fiance's father is deceased, so that isn't an option.  Should I just not dance when J dances with his mom?  I don't really want to keep him from dancing with his mom.  Should I ask a friend to be my dance partner?  Won't that make things stick out to everyone? Should I just pick a short song and dance with my dad, keeping a nice proper dance distance from each other? I am at the stage of processing, exploring and trying to figure out what feels right.  It would help me to know how other survivors have handled it.

Thanks for reading and thanks in advance for sharing your ideas.

Your sister thriver,


From Tracie said...

Wedding planning is such a wonderful and yet stressful things. I love that you have some friends who will be on "parent patrol" that is a great way to make sure that things are not getting out of hand without you having to be focused on that during your special day.

The dance question is a little tricky. When my cousin got married, she did a father-daughter dance to a special song, and then later in the reception, her (now) husband did a mother-son dance to their own special song. So during my cousin's song, her husband did not actually dance and during his dance with mom, she did not dance. I have seen it done this way at other weddings as well, where the dances are done at different times.

Maybe you could have the dj announce that there will be a mother-son dance to such and such special song and then immediately move invite everyone back out on the dance floor.....people might think that a dance with your father will come later, and then as the reception progresses they won't think about it anymore? maybe? That way he could have his dance, but it wouldn't seem so odd that you aren't having one.

Leah said...


Thanks for the support, the comment and the idea from your cousin's wedding. That is a good way to handle it.

Thanks again,

maica said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
maica said...

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