Traditionally, at weddings, dads get all the parental glory. But many couples want to include one or both of their mums in their wedding ceremony and are looking for ways to do this. If this is you, then you’ve come to the right place!
But first, a couple of caveats:
If your relationship with your mum isn’t great for whatever reason, this might not feel at all relevant of course. But before you click off this post, just a reminder that you don’t have to feel guilted into including or even inviting anyone to your wedding, no matter what their role. And I’m sending you hugs.
And if your mum is no longer around but you want to honour her at your wedding, you might want to look at this post instead. And I’m sending you hugs too.
Mums are awesome
Hopefully, if you’re still reading this, your mum has been a rock for you as you were growing up and all the way up to now. To say thank you for putting up with your toddler tantrums, for helping you get around your quadratic equations maths homework, and for being an ear to listen when your heart broke, it’s a lovely thing indeed to include her in your wedding day.
However, because of the frankly dodgy patriarchal history of marriage, mums don’t tend to have a traditional or obvious role in the average wedding ceremony.
But that doesn’t mean they can’t play an important role in your big moment! Read on for some ways you can involve your mum in your wedding ceremony – and don’t let this be an exhaustive list! Use it as inspiration for your own ideas (and do let me know what you end up doing!)
7 ways your mum can play a part in your wedding
1. Ask your mum if she will walk you down the aisle
Traditionally, a dad will walk his daughter down the aisle on her wedding day, but there’s no rule to say that it has to be dad (or that anyone even walks down an aisle for that matter, but I digress…)
Why not have both of your parents flank you as you have your big reveal moment? If the aisle is too narrow for the three of you, consider asking them to go in front of you (symbolising paving the way for you) or just behind you (symbolising them having your back).
Or you can have just your mum of course.
And by the way, this isn’t just for brides. I’ve had the joy to be part of several weddings where both partners of whatever gender came in with their mums or both of their parents.
If only one of you is walking down the aisle, maybe you could ask both your mum and your mum-in-law-to-be to accompany you?
2. Acknowledge her role in your day and your life
If your mum is walking you down the aisle, ask your celebrant to say something about the relationship you have with her before they ask for her blessing. You might want to include both sets of parents in this, or just your mum – it’s entirely up to you and how you feel. Work with your celebrant to get the wording just right so that your mum feels seen and knows just how special she is.
You might want to add something about what she has been through for you, how she has been an incredible role model for you, how she has single-handedly organised every aspect of the wedding, or how she has shown you what a happy marriage looks like, for example. Make it personal, make it about her for those moments.
She has brought you up to be ready to commit to another person for the rest of your life – that’s really something!
3. Ask her to be in your wedding party
Nothing is stopping you from asking your mum to be your MOH, a bridesmaid, a groomsmaid, your best person, a flower mum(!), an usher or even a ring bearer – why not give her one of the top jobs of the day?
4. Ask her to do a reading
If your mum being part of the wedding party doesn’t feel right, how about asking her if she would like to read something during the ceremony? You could choose something for her or she could find a perfect poem or piece of prose to read. Maybe she could surprise you with it on the day? In which case, ask your celebrant to liaise with your mum to weave it in beautifully.
5. Ask her to take part in a Unity Candle ritual
A unity candle ritual is a simple gesture in a ceremony where a couple each have a lit taper candle with which they light a pillar candle together, symbolising that their energy has come together to make a new thing – their marriage (by the way, we keep the taper candles alight once the pillar candle is lit – you’re still two individual lights and being married isn’t going to change that!). A lovely variation on this is that each partner’s mum lights their candle, showing that they gave them their light in the first place.
6. Have her add a ribbon to a handfasting
Handfasting is such a versatile ritual, and one variation you can use is to ask family members to add ribbons to the fasting to symbolise your families coming together as well as the two of you. How about asking your mum(s) to play this role, and ask the celebrant to include some words of acknowledgement as they do it?
Or perhaps mum could create your handfasting cord for you instead?
7. Wear something of hers
How about making your ‘something borrowed’ something meaningful from your mum? It could even be something like her wedding veil – or maybe just a small piece of jewellery perhaps. How lovely if she could help you put it on as you are getting ready too.
So there you go! 7 ideas to get your imagination started about how you could include your mum in your wedding ceremony in a beautiful and personal way. Ask your celebrant for ways that you can tailor these perfectly to reflect your unique relationship with your mum (or mums!)
And if you’re inspired by this and you’d like that celebrant to be me, let’s chat!