Divorced Parents Of The Groom

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by C_Getty29, May 24, 2012.

  1. C_Getty29

    C_Getty29

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    Hi guys,

    I'm just starting to plan my wedding, and one of the things that I know is going to be really awkward to work round is the fact that my parents divorced 22 years ago when I was 3 in very acrimonious circumstances. Since then they have had as minimal contact with each other as was physically possible, and my dad especially cannot stand my mum, to the extent that I saw her barely 4 or 5 times from the age of 6 to the age of 19 (he got sole custody of me). When I was 19 I decided that I was old enough to make my own choice and I have been seeing her as regularly as possible for the past 6 years.

    The problem that I have is when it comes to the top table. As I say, my dad cannot stand my mum, my mum is not overly fond of my dad, and both are in new relationships, my dad has been with his current partner for about 21 years and my mum has been remarried for about 20 years. I know that tradition states that it should be my mum and dad at the top table at the reception and that they should be separated while there anyway, but I really don't want to cause any problems with either of my set of parents, as if I put my mum there my stepmum will feel really left out and the same with if I put my stepmum at the table instead of my mum. Plus I don't want my mum and dad staring daggers at each other down the table!

    Does anyone have any suggestions of what I can do? I like the idea of a top table, but as I say it currently seems unfeasible in whatever combination I go for.
     
    C_Getty29, May 24, 2012
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  2. C_Getty29

    Becky

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    ...yep, that's right!

    Both our parents are divorced, and most have remarried. Luckily they all get on, but we didn't want to have the traditional set up as it would mean either having a monster table with about 20 people on it, or having to leave out the step-parents. Neither of these were really an option!

    Our top table consisted of us, best man and his fiancée, and the bridesmaids and their husbands/boyfriends. It was all the people that we actually wanted to spend time with! Would this be an option for you, or would the bride want her parents on the top table? If she does, would you parents be happy with this?

    We put all the parents together on one table - but like I said they all get on, and this won't be an option for you.

    How about having each of the three 'parent units' hosting their own table?
     
    Becky, May 24, 2012
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    Helen

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    Families are a nightmare!

    At our wedding we decided to let my parents host their own table, and my husbands father/family host his own table. I also let my sister host a table to keep her happy too! We then chose some of our friends to sit with (I didn't choose any of my bridesmaids, I let them sit with other people they knew). It worked really well and everyone was happy. We located our table in the middle of the room and then put the parents tables around our table so everyone was central.

    You could do something similar and sit with best men and bridesmaids? Or choose some other friends to get them more involved? Like Becky said how much do the brides parents want to sit on a traditional top table?

    Or you could get a huge top table and sit everyone on it! I've seen a couple of people do this at weddings, the tables have been so big you can easily separate people ;)
     
    Helen, May 24, 2012
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  4. C_Getty29

    C_Getty29

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    I'm liking the idea of a small top table with the best man and matron of honour. As they are married to each other it would make it a very small top table! I also like all the parents hosting tables, that seems like a really good way to make them all feel valued/equal and to keep them seperated! I'll need to see what the venues say, but I really like that as an idea.
     
    C_Getty29, May 25, 2012
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  5. C_Getty29

    iPrincess26

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    That sounds like a great idea and I know it is what a few on here have done, we have no parent issues like that be are thinking of a sweetheart table for us (just the 2 of us) and then each set of parents hosting a table - as we only have 20 people including us for the ceremony a traditional top table would be nearly half of us so seems a little silly!

    A little confused why you think you have to check with the venues, you generally tell them the layout you want.
     
    iPrincess26, May 25, 2012
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  6. C_Getty29

    C_Getty29

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    I've had some people tell me that some venues have specific layouts that can be used, but I was going to ask the events co-ordinators at the reception venues we look at for ideas as well as they will no doubt have dealt with this before!
     
    C_Getty29, May 25, 2012
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    Helen

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    Thought I would add - all our tables were round, we didn't use any long ones.

    I've also seen venues with all long tables - this is what I originally wanted but it didn't really work with our room size.
     
    Helen, May 25, 2012
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    Becky

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    That's true, I've heard the same. Most should be fairly flexible though, but you will of course be limited to the types of table they have.
     
    Becky, May 25, 2012
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    MrsC2Be

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    I think letting them host their own table is a good way to go, it stops anyone being left out and offended, as well as keeping them all apart! It's me with the divorced parents, but only my Dad is remarried. My stepmum has been great and said she'll sit on a different table for dinner (without being asked!) so that took a lot of the stress away!
     
    MrsC2Be, May 27, 2012
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    Frogbitch

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    We had best man, MOH and ushers sit with us, and each set of parents had their own table.
    We didn't have any divorce issues, we just didn't really like the idea of the traditional top table, where you can only talk properly to the people next to you.
     
    Frogbitch, May 27, 2012
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  11. C_Getty29

    C_Getty29

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    Having discussed it with my fiancee, we are both really in favour of having a small top table with us, best man and MOH with the three sets of parents hosting tables 1, 2 and 3, then having one bridesmaid and one groomsmen on each table hosting tables 4, 5 and 6. Thank you so much to everyone for the help, I'll let you all know how the venues can accommodate that set up.
     
    C_Getty29, May 27, 2012
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  12. C_Getty29

    Becky

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    That sounds like a really good idea, and should hopefully avoid any conflict!
     
    Becky, May 28, 2012
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    elliekitty

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    My step brother had a bit of an issue with parents being divorced and not getting on very well! The easiest way they found to settle it, was by having a top table with only them on xx
     
    elliekitty, May 28, 2012
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