Wedding Etiquette Forum

Parents of the bride and groom table ettique

I have a slight issue i know that the natural thing is the table closest to the bride and groom go to the parents..... My mom and dad have been split since i was 8 and they barely can sit in a room together without getting an attitude with each other...... to top it off my mom is dating someone else..... how the hell do i put them three at a table together or is there something i can do that would be proper and not rude
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Re: Parents of the bride and groom table ettique

  • I am in a similar situation.  My father cannot be sat with my mother, or my step-mother (his second wife I am still really close to) or my grandfather (if my father decides to come to the wedding.) My mother cannot be sat at the same table as my step-mother, but both her and my mother get along with my grandfather. I wish I could help you, but my seating arrangements will be a nightmare, as you and I seem to be having the same problem.
  • lol why cant they just behave and play nice right?

    sarahuflgrumbledore
  • Bbk1211 said:
    I have a slight issue i know that the natural thing is the table closest to the bride and groom go to the parents..... My mom and dad have been split since i was 8 and they barely can sit in a room together without getting an attitude with each other...... to top it off my mom is dating someone else..... how the hell do i put them three at a table together or is there something i can do that would be proper and not rude

    Why don't you put them at different tables? No reason you have to seat them at the same table
    I was considering this but most etiquette websites says to have the parents of the bride and groom at one table so i feel like someone is going to feel like i am singling them out because i am putting them at a different table
  • Separate tables would make them more comfortable and make you less worried. I say put them at separate tables, but equidistant from your table (one to the left, one to the right?)
    PrettyGirlLostcowgirl8238PhoneCardLady
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    There is no rule dictating where parents have to sit.  Separate them if that is what will work best for everyone.

    I did fret about about where guests sat in proximity to the "head" table. (Daughter had a somewhat untraditional table.)  Her table sat smack in the middle of the room.  We had grandparents from her side sit to the left of their table, and grandparents from his side sit to the right of the table.  A dance floor separated the two sides.  We had no family feud issues of any sort.  I am suggesting it to demonstrate that you can give people tables of "honor" in terms of proximity and yet keep them far apart from each other.  (I hope that made sense.)
    PrettyGirlLostdoeydo
  • I have never seen all the parents at one table.  When any of our girls have gotten married each set of parents have hosted their own table - I much prefer that.  It would solve your problem and put your parents at a table with people they enjoy.  This is what we will do when DD #4 gets married in June.  DH and I will host a table, my ex-h and his wife will host a table, and the MOG/SFOG will host a table.

    Easy peasy.

    PrettyGirlLostSKPM
  • My parents sat at a different table then my in-laws. My parents had guests from out of town they needed to host as my aunts flew in from Germany and didn' speak english. My in-laws also had out of town family that they wanted to sit with. There wasn't enough room at one table to get everyone together. We put my family at one end of the head table and his family at the other end of the head table.
  • kmmssg said:

    I have never seen all the parents at one table.  When any of our girls have gotten married each set of parents have hosted their own table - I much prefer that.  It would solve your problem and put your parents at a table with people they enjoy.  This is what we will do when DD #4 gets married in June.  DH and I will host a table, my ex-h and his wife will host a table, and the MOG/SFOG will host a table.

    Easy peasy.

    This was my thought as well if their are divorced couples with issues being around each other. Luckily for me - my FI's parents are divorced - but his step dad has been in the picture for years and is a real class act. He refers to my SI's dad as his "husband in-law". They will all be more than happy to share a table - but if they weren't - etiquette would not drive me to put them together as I'm sure it would be uncomfortable. 
  • RebeccaB88RebeccaB88 Figment of Your Imagination member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Put them at separate tables and be done with it.  If they can't suck it up and ignore each other for a few hours to get their daughter married off, then who's the real adult in the situation?
    melbelleupPrettyGirlLostdoeydo
  • Yeah I've never seen both sets of parents at the same table either...
    image


    PrettyGirlLost
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    I have never seen all the parents at one table.  When any of our girls have gotten married each set of parents have hosted their own table - I much prefer that.  It would solve your problem and put your parents at a table with people they enjoy.  This is what we will do when DD #4 gets married in June.  DH and I will host a table, my ex-h and his wife will host a table, and the MOG/SFOG will host a table.

    Easy peasy.

    @kmmssg, at my son's wedding we did actually sit with the bride's parents.  They had a small version of a king's table.  They each only had one attendant, who, with their S/O's, also joined the table, along with my daughter and her husband.  It worked logistically and socially for us.  At DD's wedding, we stuck with the more traditional setting.
  • My parents want to sit with their friends, as do FI's parents. So they'll each have their own table. If your parents dont get along, seat them on opposite sides of the room. I don't think theres any honor in being seated together or in proximity to the bride and groom.
    PrettyGirlLost
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    Separate tables.  Then ask each parent who they would like to host at their table.  Makes them feel special to have their own table to host.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    PrettyGirlLost
  • climbingsingleclimbingsingle NYC 'burbs member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Put your mom and her date at one table and your dad at a different table. 

    PrettyGirlLost
  • Thanks guys @lyndausvi i like the whole asking who they want at a table thing i think it would make them feel special
  • What FI and I are doing for the reception is Dad's sides of the family on one side of the hall, Mum's side of the family on the other, friends in the middle and neither the two shall meet!!

    My dad doesn't get a long with my late mothers side of the family (at all!) and FFIL left FMIL a few years ago after having an affair with his cousin (which they are now living happily ever after together- eyeroll) so we are just being proactive in keeping the peace.

  • phiraphira Bahstin member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    DIFFERENT TABLES.

    Instead of thinking about this in the context of, "This is what the wedding planning books/websites say to do," think about it like, "Where should I seat my parents so they both feel important--they're the parents of the bride!--but they won't interact with each other?"

    My parents are divorced and can't stand each other. My ex-sister-in-law's parents are also bitterly divorced. At their wedding three years ago, there were four different tables so that none of the parents sat together. It worked out fine.
    Anniversary
    now with ~* INCREASED SASSINESS *~
    image
    PrettyGirlLost
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    Ninth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Put them at different tables.  There is no requirement that all the parents of the bride and all the parents of the groom have to sit at the same table-especially if they can't keep their own grievances with each other to themselves for the day.
    PrettyGirlLost
  • AprilH81AprilH81 Columbus, OH member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    My parents (still married) are at a table with their closest friend and my FI's parents (still married) are at a table with their closest friends and family members.  They don't have to all sit together...

    In your case I would do three tables...  Your Mom/BF and whoever she wants to sit at her table, your Dad and his family/friends and then the groom's parents with friends/family.
    photo composite_14153800476219.jpg
  • Where I live, it's customary to have the following people at Table ONE:  bride's parents, groom's parents, officiant and spouse.  And that's what we did too.

    But you have a special situation, so have your mom host TABLE ONE, your dad host TABLE TWO, and the groom's parents host TABLE THREE.
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    Where I live, it's customary to have the following people at Table ONE:  bride's parents, groom's parents, officiant and spouse.  And that's what we did too.

    But you have a special situation, so have your mom host TABLE ONE, your dad host TABLE TWO, and the groom's parents host TABLE THREE.
    I always find it funny people think certain people have to sit at specific tables numbers.   I can't remember the actual table numbers our parents had except they were both in the teens somewhere.   Our table number was also in the teens. 






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    PrettyGirlLost
  • Different tables. They are adults, they should be able to act like it. You don't have to have arranged seating either. FI and I have all the guest tables in the center of the room with a B&G table (2 seats) at the head of the room. That way people can sit with whomever they please / get along with. Not very formal, but its what works for us.
    PrettyGirlLost
  • KatWAGKatWAG Chicago member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Where I live, it's customary to have the following people at Table ONE:  bride's parents, groom's parents, officiant and spouse.  And that's what we did too.

    But you have a special situation, so have your mom host TABLE ONE, your dad host TABLE TWO, and the groom's parents host TABLE THREE.

    Damn it! I did it wrong. Can I have another wedding?

    FWIW: My head table (that no parents sat at) was table 8. GASP.

    BabyFruit Ticker
    lyndausviPrettyGirlLostRebeccaB88
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    Ninth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    edited January 2014
    Where I live, it's customary to have the following people at Table ONE:  bride's parents, groom's parents, officiant and spouse.  And that's what we did too.

    But you have a special situation, so have your mom host TABLE ONE, your dad host TABLE TWO, and the groom's parents host TABLE THREE.
    Although at my brother's wedding they did put parents and immediate family members at a table together with the bride and groom, I think my parents and my BF's mother are going to feel happier hosting separate tables with the people they feel closest to at them.  They have very different views from each other, and I think they'll be more comfortable not sitting together in a "forced socializing" situation.  This is also why I'd prefer to just sit with my BF and not have a "head table."  He wants to include at least one groomsman with some serious social problems, and he has had difficulty with me in the past.  I always try to "kill him (groomsman) with kindness" but I don't want to do that at my wedding more than I have to.  Also, I haven't figured out yet who I'd want to ask to stand up with me.

    So I'm happy to let our parents each host tables of their own with the people they are closest to (besides me and my BF, of course!)
  • At my wedding we did three separate tables: one for mom and stepdad to host, one for dad and stepmom to host, and one for FIL and MIL to host. They were all equidistant from the sweetheart table, and I put the in-law table between my parents' tables as a buffer. It worked out great.

    Etiquette means seeing to your guests' comfort. If it would make divorced parents uncomfortable to sit together, then separating them is totally proper.
  • MrsMack10612MrsMack10612 The Witch City member
    Tenth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    My parents have been divorced for 30 years. They don't get along and my father remarried shortly after the divorce.  There was no way on God's green earth I was putting them at the same table.

    H's parents are still married, but the only family he had attending.

    We seated my folks at separate tables:   mom, her sister, my sibs/spouses and groom's parents; dad, his guest (not his wife, story for another day), his sister and a couple of my friends/guests/spouses who know some of the aforementioned story and could be polite to my dad.

     

  • I was all freaked out about this, but in the end my parents actually acted like civilized adults and they were actually mad that I separated them.

    Oh, sorry parents, you've hated each other for 15 years....how the hell was I supposed to know that you would get along?  Ugh.
    sexy, harry styles, best song ever, cute, beautiful, asdjglñlñ, marcel
  • Of course, that will not be the same for all parents, so I vote for separating them.
    sexy, harry styles, best song ever, cute, beautiful, asdjglñlñ, marcel
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