Moms and Maids

Incorporating Mother of the Groom

I'm looking for a way that I can incorporate both my mother and my fiance's mother in my wedding without doing any kind of candle lighting or anything like that. My fiance's mother passed away after a battle with cancer. I never had the opportunity to meet her, but from all the stories from her family and friends, I feel I would have really enjoyed her company.
I have been thinking of ways that I could incorporate her into our big day. He often speaks of how wedding planning makes him a little sad knowing that she is not there to help.
I had the idea to get an item from both my mother and his mother's wedding days and carry them with me during our day. I'm not quite sure what to get though.
Any ideas would be helpful.

Thank you,
Danielle

Re: Incorporating Mother of the Groom

  • Could you perhaps carry her favorite flowers? You could also do a bouquet charm with her picture on it.
  • Did FI's mom leave him any jewelry?  You could perhaps borrow a piece and either wear it or pin it subtly on your bouquet somewhere.  If FI knows her favorite color, you could infuse that into your wedding color scheme, either in your flowers or general decor.  Or if FI knows if she had a favorite flower, you could include some in your bouquet.  A favorite food of hers could be added to your menu. If she had a favorite band or song, you could make sure the DJ plays it during the reception.  The only thing I would caution about this idea, however, would be to find an upbeat dancing tune so as not to turn the party somber.  
  • I agree with mobkaz. Do something subtle.
  • Let his mother be quitely remembered. It will be a day of mixed emotions...let it be a joyous occasion.
  • Since her absence is enough to evoke sadness, keep her "inclusion" subtle and not grief-provoking.  Instead of doing things like lighting candles, leaving empty spaces, moments of silence, etc. that would draw attention to the reason for her absence, instead you and/or your FI might carry something associated with her, provide food, beverages, decorations, and/or entertainment that she would have enjoyed, give her a tribute in a wedding program and/or carefully mention her in a speech in a non-sad context (e.g., how happy she would be to see the wedding today, past special occasions with her, etc.)  The important thing is not to treat your wedding as a memorial service for the deceased.
  • My mother passed away five years ago. We are putting a framed photo of her in the pew where she would have sat. While it's certainly sad for your fiance, his joy at marrying you will be the overwhelming emotion of the day. I think people tend to get nervous about mentioning those that have passed away, but I think however he would like to include her memory on that day is the way to go. 
  • Do you have siblings, @katherinedw78? Does your late mother's family plan on attending?

    A picture of her might really upset them. Could you maybe carry her picture on a bouquet charm instead? That way she'll still be with you, just in a more subtle way.
  • I don't have siblings and my mom's sister is attending the wedding and she is aware of what we're doing. Have you had a close relative pass away? 
  • Absolutely. And I know that overt reminders of my dear relatives would send my family weeping on a day that should be happy.
    jendemeyer
  • Well, I disagree with you. I was the closest person to my mother and, like I said in my original post, the overwhelming emotion of the day is joy. As the bride, I'm choosing to recognize my mother by giving her a seat in the church. And I think the original poster should do whatever makes her fiance the most comfortable.
    saric83
  • And that's your right. I'm just offering a different perspective.
  • I also had to sit through a wedding on BF's side of the family where the bride's beloved grandfather had passed away less than 2 weeks before the wedding. The family was holding it together until the priest spent 5 minutes talking about him during the homily. It was so uncomfortable, watching them crying so hard ... it was really inappropriate. It's definitely affected my perspective on memorials, and I own that.
  • Absolutely, and two weeks is very fresh. My mother passed away five years ago. My point was that it's a very difficult thing for a bride and/or groom to deal with and the future spouse should allow that person to figure out the best way to deal with it. I'm sure the original poster's fiance knows what would be an appropriate way to honor his mother in a way that would make him and his family comfortable. I'm sad that my mother can't be at my wedding and help me plan it. She was my best friend and I want to recognize her at my wedding as her presence will be very much felt. I'm sure everyone will say things like "Your mother would have been so happy for you" so to do something super subtle (i.e. a photo in my bouquet) at least in my situation would feel weird to me.
  • And my point was that the bride and groom need to consider how their families will feel as well. Sounds like you've definitely done that and struck the right balance for you. Good luck planning!
  • Absolutely, and two weeks is very fresh. My mother passed away five years ago. My point was that it's a very difficult thing for a bride and/or groom to deal with and the future spouse should allow that person to figure out the best way to deal with it. I'm sure the original poster's fiance knows what would be an appropriate way to honor his mother in a way that would make him and his family comfortable. I'm sad that my mother can't be at my wedding and help me plan it. She was my best friend and I want to recognize her at my wedding as her presence will be very much felt. I'm sure everyone will say things like "Your mother would have been so happy for you" so to do something super subtle (i.e. a photo in my bouquet) at least in my situation would feel weird to me.
    The thing is, your wedding is supposed to be a joyful occasion-with or without your deceased loved ones.  It's not a sequel to their funerals.  Empty chairs with photos and other in-your-face reminders of why the deceased are not present can be too grief-evoking and that can make everyone else, in all capacities, very uncomfortable and unhappy, which is why subtlety is considered more appropriate than a smack-in-the-face reminder.
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