How to walk down the aisle when you've got two moms

I have lesbian parents and I was wondering how I ask one mother over the other to walk me down the aisle? I am planning on asking my 'other' mother, that is my non-birth mother, to honor the special relationship we have. But even the thought of it makes me feel like I am, 1) totally giving into lesbian parent stereotypes by asking her to fill a traditional 'father' role, and 2) leaving my birth-mother out of the ceremony. Have any other children of gay parents struggled with this dilemma? -Carmen

nancy-and-bouquetMy husband, who also has two moms, lucked out on not having to deal with this particular challenge — his "other mother" Susan is quite shy, and making her get up in front of a crowd during our ceremony was her worst nightmare. We had Dre's mom Nancy act as our ring-bearer (and my bouquet holder) during the ring exchange, while Susan happily watched from her spot on the lawn.

For your situation, one option would be to create a wonderful role for your biological mother in the ceremony, because you're right: asking one mother and not the other has the potential ruffle some feathers. If you find a well-suited way for her to participate in the ceremony, it'll likely be less of an issue that your other mother is involved in the traditional "dad" role. I don't know your mom, so I'm not sure what the best suggestion is here — my mother is super musical and loves an audience, so she sang our recessional song.

If you want to avoid the "lesbian dad" gender issues of having your other mother step into the typical father role, then I'd advise having them BOTH walk you down the aisle! Jewish brides are traditionally walked down the aisle by both parents, and if Andreas and I hadn't walked down the aisle together, I would have borrowed the "both parents" tradition.

Also, it would behoove you to talk to your biological mother about this — it may be that, like Dre's other mother, she doesn't WANT to be part of the ceremony and would rather have the luxury of just watching. Alternately, she may have ideas for how she wants to get involved that wouldn't cross your mind.

  1. I went to a wedding years ago and the bride had her mother and father walk her down the aisle… one on each arm. I thought that was very sweet. It could work for two moms or two dads!

    1 agrees
  2. My mom and dad both walked me down the aisle (and my husband was also walked down by both of his parents), I recommend having both of them with you!! :)

    0 agree
  3. When my mother and stepfather got married, they each had both their parents walk them down the ailse – and they had a Roman Catholic ceremony. I thought it was great, and will most likely do the same if I ever get married.

    0 agree
  4. I also am the proud daughter of two moms. I'm choosing to have my bio-mom walk me down the aisle and her partner (my other mother) will be our officiant. :)

    0 agree
  5. Even though my wife and I had both our parents walk us down the aisle because it was Jewish tradition, I'm finding most couples are going this route lately! Both lesbian weddings I photographed this month had both their parents walk them down the aisle and they weren't Jewish, but it felt natural to walk down the aisle that way.

    0 agree
  6. Getting walked down the asile with both parents was fantastic. Here is reccomending that. Since we had a Jewish wedding my partner did the same, and we wouldn't have had it any other way.

    0 agree
  7. I also had both my parents walk me down the aisle, just make sure the aisle is big enough. Our aisle was made of shells on either side and it was a little small, so my mom actually stepped on one during the walk.. but otherwise it worked out great!

    0 agree
  8. My sister was walked down the aisle by both our dad and her stepdad, and made sure to have a special dance with both of them. When the three of them reached the end of the aisle and the minister asked who gives her away, my mom and her mom both got up and all 4 parents said "we do".

    1 agrees
  9. Walking down the aisle was probably my favorite part of my wedding. My parents both walked down before me, then stopped mid-aisle. I walked down alone, met them, kissed them, and then waited while they went to their seats. My husband then came and met me halfway and we walked down the rest of the way together. I loved getting to honor both my parents, but also wanted to walk alone (I objected to being "given away.") But the best was that moment of my husband coming down to meet me – it was like we were the only 2 people in the room. This would work for a whole variety of family permutations (parents! stepparents! two moms!)

    3 agree
  10. Not only are both bride and groom walked down the aisle by both their respective sets parents in Jewish weddings, all the parents also stand with them under the chuppah. Shoshana

    0 agree
  11. Here to second (or…eighth?) the suggestion of having both parents walk you down the aisle. Both of them had a hand in raising you, after all.

    0 agree
  12. You could always walk yourself down the aisle. :) It's what my fiancee and I plan to do.

    0 agree
    • And that's just what we are going to do too! I spoke to my mothers and, as much as they were honored to be part of the ceremony, they thought my being 'given away' was too traditional. The more I thought about it, the more I agreed. So, final verdict, my FH and I are walking together down the aisle.

      0 agree
  13. I, personally, decided NO ONE is walking me down the isle. The way I see it? I'm my own person, no one is "giving" me away. If my son wasn't going to be the ring bearer then I'd have him do it (he's three) because he's #1 boy in my life. Anyway, I have my mother & three dads (my dad, his partner & my stepfather) so I am finding other ways to get involved. They know my "radical" thinking so they understand & are just pleased to be a part of it :)

    0 agree
  14. I had both Mom and Dad walk me down the aisle and it was so…nourishing, relaxing, comforting…but that's b/c I'm close to both parents, too. We had a narrow staircase so Mom had her brother walk her down the stairs and she waited for us at the bottom. But, she also has bad knees so she needed the arm and handrail! Dad and I came down the stairs, met up with Mom and walked the rest of the aisle. The pics are cute so I guess it was wonderful. My eyes were on my man-to-be!

    0 agree
  15. Reposted from Facebook….

    I am so glad to see this addressed! I only have one lesbian mom but it's nice to see famiilies like mine included. It's weird because my mom can "pass" for straight since she doesn't have a partner…straight people often assume that everyone is straight. It also feels weird to be getting married in California after Prop. 8 passed. I am so sad … Read Moreabout that, but also happy about my own marriage. How does one address this issue without getting "political?" There are people in both my and my FH's families who are against gay marriage. There are also many GLBT (and GLBT-friendly) people in my family. How does one recconcile this at a wedding?

    0 agree
    • Maybe read Plato's Symposium (the story that inspired the Hedwig animation)?

      1 agrees
  16. I walked myself down the aisle. I didn't think back then that i owe anyone walking me down the aisle since my parents were divorce. But still I enjoyed their presence.

    0 agree
  17. Shannon, Meg at A Practical Wedding (an awesome blog!) talked about this quite a bit. I know some people who choose to put something in their program, or make a statement, or request a donation as part of the "registry," etc.

    Personally, it is your day and equal marriage is important to you, so I say that you should feel comfortable making a "political" statement during your ceremony or in your program. Some of those anti-equal marriage folks might even be swayed, to see all the love on your day within the context of those deprived marriage.

    For our offbeat marriages, we aren't worrying (overly much) about offending people when we wear a pink dress or don't have centerpieces. Why should we worry about those anti-equal marriage sensibilities?

    It's your day! (So take my 2 cents with a grain of salt, too!)

    :) :)

    0 agree
  18. My mother made me promise when I was about 16 that she would get to walk me down the aisle too. My parents are still together and very happily married, but she was just adamant that she has done just as much, if not more (her words not mine!) work than Dad to raise me so she wants her fair share! :) So maybe they know what they want, you could ask them. Im getting married in Janurary and had to make sure there is a wide aisle Im looking forward to having them both with me. The more love the better.

    0 agree
  19. My parents are divorced, and currently my dad's married and my mom isn't. I call Amber my "Quasi-step-mom" because when your parent gets remarried after they're done raising you it's hard to say step-parent…

    Anyway, I'm the oldest, and while I love my dad, and recently our relationship has taken a turn for the up, my two-years-younger brother has been the guy who's been there for me our whole lives, and he's the ONLY person I feel could ever "give me away" to anyone. My mom doesn't enter as an idea, just because she doesn't, and also because she agrees with me. Having my brother walk me was the first suggestion she had for me when I told her the news. (I'd thought of it already, though :) Just shows that it's a good idea for me).

    0 agree

Join the conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

No-drama comment policy

Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy.

Biz owners & wedding bloggers

Please just use your real name in your comment, not your business name or blog title. Our comments are not the place to pimp your website. If you want to promote your stuff on Offbeat Bride, join us as an advertiser instead.