Duties of the Father of the Bride
(Part I of IV-The Announcement)

From my observations and experiences of the duties of the Father of the Bride, one of my favorite poems comes to mind "IF" …

“If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you”

[Remember Dad, you will survive this craziness you need to do
Long before you hear your daughter say “I do”
And you and your lovely now married daughter and you
Will dance at the reception a step or two
So enjoy the entire wedding process; don’t be stressed or sad,
Your role never ends; it’s just part of the duties of DAD,
After all you’re not losing a daughter in all this wedding fun,
You’re witnessing a new family being born and gaining a new Son!]

Part I- The announcement.

The traditional duties of the Father of the Bride before the Wedding include:

1. Interview the intended Groom in advance. Remember, Dad, this is not an inquisition or integration. You need to find out about the young man who wishes to marry your daughter; who is he inside, his values, work ethic, the depth of his love for your daughter, what he likes/loves about your daughter, what are his feelings about having a family of his own with your daughter, and what is his background (family, church, school, education, and work experience).
2. Talk (this should be a two way dialog) with your daughter about your conversation with her beau. Ask her about her feelings. Listen actively and intently to your daughter’s words, which topics she selects to focus on, as well as her tone and her feelings. Be supportive and positive! Ask what she wants you to specifically help out with on the wedding planning and at the wedding itself. Let her know that you’re there for her!
3. Assuming that the young man meets your approval, give your permission, (Yes, that is a bit old fashion but I still think it is appropriate).
4. Sit down with your wife and go over what you have heard from the prospective bride and groom. Ask your wife her thoughts on the proposed union and then listen actively and intently to your wife’s words, the specific topics she selects to focus on, as well as her tone and feelings. Be supportive! Ask what your wife wants you to specifically do to help out with on the wedding planning and at the wedding itself. Then prepare do it all!
5. Assuming we are all still on track. Have a family meeting with all of your children and turn the meeting over to your daughter to share the news.
6. Invite the groom over to a family dinner (informal is better than formal).
7. You and your wife, daughter and soon –to-be son-in-law should get together to discuss the wedding plans, the location for the wedding ceremony, the venue for the wedding reception, the type or style of the wedding (i.e., big or small; temple, church, backyard, beach, or resort). Also discuss the broad overview on the costs of the wedding and who will pay for what, and the month and year of the wedding. The actual theme can be figured out later by the bride (maybe with Mom’s and bridesmaid help, and possibly the groom’s help).
8. Plan and have a formal meeting with the groom’s family and your family. There are two schools of thought on this type of engagement party:
a) Just the three couples: the bride and groom and their respective parents (there could be up to five couples if there are blended families involved), or
b) Have over the entire families of the bride and groom with their siblings.
9. As the Father of the Bride, you may be asked participate in the shopping for venues, caterers, and maybe even photographers, modest wedding dresses, decorations. Be involved and be flexible about “going s-h-o-p-p-i-n-g” (If your wife and daughter request you to go S-h-o-p-p-i-n-g, remember this involves being relaxed and having fun with your wife and daughter. Allow them the time needed (however long that is) to figure things out and to make decisions. If asked for your opinion, offer one. S-h-o-p-p-i-n-g is different from shopping or buying which, for most men, is a focused quest to find and buy something in the shortest time frame possible). Remember the bride is looking for THE wedding dress of her dreams. [LDS Father of Bride must be especially patient in search from all the modest wedding dresses or LDS Wedding Gowns that your daughter can find The weeding dress that is beautiful and LDS Temple worthy!]

Please also see: Duties of the Father of the Bride (Part II , III and III)

© Copyright 2010 WeddingLDS.com & Howard Edward Haller, Ph.D.

Author's Bio: 

Howard Edward Haller, Ph.D. is a Professional Keynote & Motivation Speaker (on Leadership and Intrapreneurship), University Professor & Trustee, and Published Author of Two Books. Dr. Haller has held leadership positions at the Ward, Stake and Regional levels in the LDS Church, including having served in two Bishoprics. Dr. Haller is writing on Father & Grooms exclusively for WeddingLDS.com.

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