Second Weddings

how to include the children

edited August 2014 in Second Weddings

This is my second wedding(bride). I have two young boys. I would like to include something in the ceremony. that our family is joining the grooms(his first). The boys are standing up front with us. i would like to do something with them during the ceremony to join the families.


Re: how to include the children

  • LesPaulLesPaul member
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    edited December 2011
    Hi!  Welcome Heidi.

    How old are they?  Standing up with you and your FI should be enough - they are involved in the ceremony as part of the wedding party. 

    I'm personally not a fan of the family vows and such.  The wedding is between you and your FI, and the vows are yours - not theirs.  Perhaps you can give them a special gift privately?
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  • edited December 2011
    We are doing a sand ceremony to join our family. I have a 5 year old and we thought this would be a great way to include him in a separate way of the ceremony.
    We will be doing our own traditional vows and then doing a sand ceremony and presenting him with a family medallion so he feels as though he is a part of our family.
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  • edited December 2011

    Talk to your boys and see what they would like to do. My three (2 girls (18 & 7) and 1 boy (12)) asked to be inolved so we are doing a version of the sand ceremony with an hourglass ( We are also creating a small jar of layered sand before the ceremony for the children to keep with them. My oldest is my maid of honor, my son is walking down the aisle and is a groomsmen, and the baby is one of the flower girl. The children are inviting FH into our family instead of giving me away and the oldest help FH plan the weekend he proposed. That is what they wanted and I think they may be more excited about this than we are.

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  • handfast4mehandfast4me member
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    edited December 2011
    Look down in other posts for similar information.  There are several recent posts about including children in the ceremony.

    Retread: Is there any way we can make a sticky about a couple of these similar topics? 
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  • Lisa50Lisa50 member
    2500 Comments 5 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href=" Topic Wedding BoardsForum:35Discussion:bd6be95e-caee-47b7-bf86-a60b9ed7d9cePost:5c2784ec-17e0-4ed4-a59b-4bd4e286fda0">Re: how to include the children</a>:
    [QUOTE]Look down in other posts for similar information.  There are several recent posts about including children in the ceremony. Retread: Is there any way we can make a sticky about a couple of these similar topics? 
    Posted by handfast4me[/QUOTE]

    Dang!  Where is that article from <em>Washingtonian Magazine</em> that I posted on this very topic?

    Oops!  Sorry.  Welcome to the board, Heidi!  I'll search for a good article I found a few months ago.  Stay tuned.
  • Lisa50Lisa50 member
    2500 Comments 5 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011

    Here's a link to the article I mentioned.  I only wish I knew how to imbed the entire post, entitled "When kids take part in the wedding ..." posted here on the Second Weddings board back on 10/29/10.  Enjoy!
  • MikesAngieMikesAngie member
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    edited December 2011
    Thank you Lisa!  Welcome Heidi!! Congratulations!!  Kids are tricky and it depends on their relationship with the other parent.  It's best to ask them what they would like, if they are old enough to understand what is happening. 

    My FI's daughter who will be days away from 18 when we are married; xolunteered to do a reading, will be participating in a sand ceremony and in a private moment between she and I will be receiving a ring that was mine - this was all her choosing.  She does not have a viable relationship with her biological mother.

    Our vows are just between my FI and I. 

    Sometimes for the child just dressing nice and standing with the parent and the new step-parent is enough.
  • edited December 2011
    my fi and myself have 4 children and have decided to get them each a engraved ring that is on a chain to wear as a necklace. they will get these before the cermony. my daughters are brides maids and junior bms and son is our rb we have decided that the cermony will remain traditional with the kids still being part of it 
  • RKwedding2011RKwedding2011 member
    edited December 2011
        I think it is best to talk to the children.  Only do things they are comfortable with.  A single parent and their children are a package deal. I've heard of couples having the new step parent give a bracelet or something special to the step child and promising to be good to them.
         For me, our kids are older.  We are having them be a part of the ceremony.  My daughter is my MOH, his son is a groomsman and his daughter is a bridesmaid.  
  • edited December 2011
    How we are including our children is my two older children are serving as groomsman(son is 18) and junior bridesmaid(daughter is 14) and bith asked if they could seat people too for us as well be for the cermony starts and we agreed.  We have a 5 year old daughter together who wanted to help out like her older siblings and we asked her if she wanted to carry our rings for us and she asked if she could have her teddy bear help as well and we said ok so she is doing that for us.
  • edited December 2011
    My son is 17 years old.  My previous husband passed away in 2001.  I am asking my Son to give me away since my father has already done so.  this only works of course for a certain situation similar to mine (second marriage) - although my fiance has never been married before.

    My daughter is 12 and a bridesmaid.
  • tabby24802000tabby24802000 member
    edited December 2011
    I have two boys 5 and 10 they will be 6 and 11 at time of wedding.  we are doing sand and they are each picking their own color to add to our color.  then we are gatting dog tags that say 'the day we became a family with a wedding date on them.  They are also standing up front also. 
  • heidistuberheidistuber member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I'm getting married in June and my son (6) is gaining a stepdad. He wants to be involved in the wedding as his family is expanding too. His bio-dad will be there so he has all his family there and my son is walking me down the aisle. My fiance and I decided instead of saying both pledges ("I do") and vows (I Heidi, take you...) to each other, our pledges would be about our family and our vows would just between my FI and I.

    It will go something like this:

    Minister: "Before Bride and Groom exchange their vows to each other, they have special vows for Child.  "
    [IChild is called forward]

    "This marriage is not only the union of B and G, it is also extending Child's family.  G, do you promise to love Child, to nurture him and to protect him, to teach him and cherish him now and forever?"

    Groom: "I do."

    Minister: [Similar vows for Bride (mom)]

    Minister: "Child, do you promise to love G as your step-dad and do you promise to honor and response your mother and G as a couple and as your parents?"

    Child: "I do."

    Give special necklace
  • edited December 2011
    Wow! Thanks for the insight. I have been trying to think of something unique to include the children in our ceremony, and have never thot of how this would seem to them, because they have a different parent..DUH!! Thank you for your insight!!
  • carmae6carmae6 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    We both have grown and small children. My FI is a widow and his children are dear to me and mine our to him. We have all talked on what we want and do not want. They know I can never replace their mother and visa-vera with my children. However, all of our children are close and his older son and my daughter even introduce us. This is a happy day for all of us. So we all decided all 9 kids will be in the wedding. We are having a sand ceremony were each of us will vow to be there through all times for one another. Each person will acknowledge and accept this union and the responsibility being a family through the best and worse of times through the sand ceremony. Doing this is not taking any parent or sibling's place; it just to let each other know they except them and want to be apart of their lives.
    I personally feel honor the children wants to do this and be apart of each others lives and ours. We are already close, so, this just allows it to be said out loud. Smile

    So, I must agree with many of the others when they say it depends on the situation and child. Congrats  and best wishes on your day.
  • Kimberly0402Kimberly0402 member
    edited December 2011
    My brother is giving my mom away and I will be matron of honor. My husband will also be a groomsmen. My mom's FI will have his friend stand up for him. So the wedding party will be Bride, Groom, MOH, BM, my brother, my husband.
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  • jdtfeltonjdtfelton member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Hello, This is my second wedding as well and the vision we are going with is that the grooms children will walk him down and stand with him and when I walk in my son and daughter will be walking me in and will stand with me. My adult son will be giving me away. Both the groom and I have a grandchild and my grand son is going to be my ring bearer and his grand son is going to be his ring bearer. Both of us are in our mid 40;s and we wanted to do something different and out of the box. My Father passed away many years ago. We wanted to include the children without it taking over the wedding but give them some importance  and inclusion in our union. Even though there is another parent as it is common In situations such as separation of a first family, children realize that they may have to share their parent with another person and another family and another life constantly or every other weekend. It is what it is. I think it is important that our children know that we are all on the same page when it comes to them even though we are getting married. we still love them and they are included in the extended family.
  • edited December 2011
    This is my second marriage and his first and I have two daughters previously. We are including them by my oldest being a junior bridesmaid and my youngest being the flower girl. They were included in the invitation and we will all be ligjhting the unity candle together as a family.
    And out of respect we have informed my exhusband of the plans since he and his wife are invited and luckily we all get along well enough that he was happy with everything.
    No need to over think it. Just plan what feels right and it will turn out great.
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  • edited December 2011
    My daughter (18) will be playing the flute as I walk down the aisle on my son's (14) arm.  His daughter (14) will stand with him as his "best man" and his other daughter (12) will help with the guestbook.  I will make all the daughters matching dresses and my son will have a vest and tie out of the same fabric.

    We are also asking that they all help with entertaining any of our "younger" (children) guests during the reception.  We will have some games, bubbles, and a table covered in paper with crayons.
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  • edited December 2011
    I have three kids: 11,6 and 4. All of them are walking me down the aisle. We also are going to do the sand ceremony instead of a unity candle.
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  • mysticfire76mysticfire76 member
    edited December 2011
    this is a second marriage for us both, i have 2 sons (18 & 15) he has a son (4). My father will be walking me down the isle half way and hand me off to my sons who will give me away to FI. my sons are his best men and his son is our ring bearer. We will be having two seperate ceremonies a sand ceremony for all three of the boys and us then a seperate unity candle for me and him.
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  • edited December 2011
    My son is 12 will be 13 he will walk me down the isle and stand w/ my FH and my daughter will be a JB and 7  and stand with me at the front. The vows we have are going to be for just me and my FH but we are then doing a sand ceremony w/ 4 colors for all of us becoming one. My sons father is n and out but will always be his dad. My daughters father is "gone" so my FH is her daddy.. So we felt that including the kiddos and combingin all of us together shows we are our own but we will forver be connected.. (sand)  ... I'm also keeping my last name/sons last name from first marriage and - my new one... My son asked me not to give up my name so my fiance and I talked about it and he knows he's not marrying me or I him for a name.

    I actually don't know why anyone wouldnt combine kiddos in a ceremony exp if they are still underage and will be raised in this new family..
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  • edited December 2011
    Well I'm sure in a lot of cases that would be awful but my children and I are all about  him and our future together. We enjoy ceremonies and tradition and I think it's really depends apon everyones relationship.  My son has a father who is a drug addict alcholic who is about 50,000 bucks in debt w/ his cs between his children. He has 6 w/ 4 different moms... My daughers father has been in prison rightfully so since she was two and she only remembers the bad night. He will be gone for as long as I can make sure of...  SO me finally finding a man that I thought was worthy of being in my childrens lives has had to earn it and so we are going to celebrate the fact that just because they are not by blood his and that my children come fom mixed relatioinships we can call promise to love each other and protect each other and that where their fathers have failed he not only promises to be true to me but more importantly my kiddos... Soon to be ours......
    I can't wait till I'm his
  • ggraves4462ggraves4462 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    We have decided to do a family unity candle. My kids adore my fiance and since he doesn't have any of his own HE came up with this idea. We went to Hobby Lobby and all selected different colors of wax(it comes in bags like sand). We got a wick and a gorgeous glass vase to hold the candle. Instead of lighting a unity candle or doing the sand, we are all going to pour our wax into the vase together and then he and I will light it. That to us will simbolize our family becoming one. Plus the kids are standing up with us, my daughter is one of my bridesmaids and my 2 sons are groomsmen. It's YOUR day and YOU do what YOU want to do!! Congrats!
  • edited December 2011
    This is technically my 3rd but no kids 1st one, his 2nd. I have a 10 yr old son, he has a 19 yr old daughter, 18 yr old son and 16 yr old daughter. And we have another son on the way (due 30 days after the wedding).  We are having a small ceremony/reception. His 19 yr old daughter will be my maid of honor and his 16 yr old daughter will be my bridesmaid. His son will be best man and I think my son is going to be a groomsman (still deciding that). The kids all agreed.
    We are not including them in the actual vows. But each of them will get a Claddagh necklace to symbolize our bond as a family. My fiance and I are opting for Claddagh wedding bands too. I also opted not to get an engagement ring but instead will get a family ring made after the baby is born.
  • edited December 2011

    This will be the first (and only, haha!) marriage for both me and my fiancee. He however has a 7-year-old daughter (that I have been around for 3 years so far) that will be 9 when we get married. We have not decided what we will exactly do at our ceremony, but we do know we want his daughter included. Her mother is not very active in her life, and she had a very rough/neglectful home life when she used to live with her bio-mom. She calls me mom all the time and is so happy and excited that me and her dad are getting married. Her mother has 2 children with someone else and my FI's daughter was always the "outcast" in that family and treated differently than the other kids (something we have discovered from her abuse/neglect counselor that she talks about a lot in therapy), so we definitely wanted a small part of the ceremony to include her and talk about becoming a family. We DID ask her about it, and she is extremely excited to be involved and is always talking about the wedding. I know that my FI and I's vows are about us, but I am also not just marrying him, but his daughter too, and will have an immediate family. It's really important to the both of us that she be included.

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  • edited December 2011

    This is my fiance's and my first marraige. We are both dedicated to eachother and to my daughter. My daughter will be 4when we get married and my Fiance has known her since she was 3months old. He and I have known eachother since age 12.

    My daughter's father is not a part of her life for various reasons. Though member's of his family are. My fiance wants everyone in all three families involved (his, mine, and bio-father's) to know, hear, and see that he intends to give my daughter everything he would give her if she were his by birth. I'm not sure she will be able to understand it all, and as many people point out the wedding cerimony is for the B&G keeping that in mind, making this promise to her, its for him; he feels that making that promise out loud infront of her family and his is as vital a part of us becoming a family as making a promise to me is. I respect and admire that about him.

    He feels so strongly about this that when he proposed to me and gave me my ring, he gave her ear-rings and asked if she would let him be her dad, again I'm not sure she really understood but it was important to him to ask, and knowing that helps me to really know he really is the one.

  • ShanarahShanarah member
    edited January 2012
    I've given my daughters the option of being in the ceremony, having a family ceremony or not being involved at all. The 15yr olds still thinking on it, the 9yr old likes the idea of being in the wedding and the 8yr old just shrugs. We've made sure that their fathers are well aware of whats going on and are comfortable with the situation, (both are very happy with the idea and with me getting remarried)
    The girls are also well aware that while my FI will love and care for them, he is in no way going to infringe upon their fathers role. This has gone a long way into making the girls more comfortable.

    While I agree with the statement that a wedding is for the bride an groom, its also solidifying a family. Everyone knows that if my girls arn't happy with my choice of partners that that person goes away. Same with the wedding. My daughters always come first in my heart and in my life. 
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  • when my dad and step mom got married last year, they wanted to include my step sister (18) and me (32) into their ceremony.  What they did was made a promise to the minister, then my step mom made a promise to me, to love me and treat me as her own....then my dad made the same promise to my step sister....It was very touching and made my sister and I cry...(good tears!!)...
    Mom of 4....and Sept 2013 BRIDE!!!!
  • I wanted to include my children in every aspect of the wedding.  So my girls 9 and 8 will be flower girls and my son 12 will be a junior best man.  I also asked the kids and got their opinion on invites and I put them into the wedding invitations.  The girls are also making the wedding programs for me.  This way they feel like they are part of my big day
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