Our Wedding...Advice Please!

Marie - posted on 04/16/2009 ( 14 moms have responded )

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My fiance and I are getting married in June and he has two little boys who will become my step children. We are gettong married in a courthouse and I want to include them in the ceremony somehow. Has anyone done this in some way? How can I include the other two people that my fiance loves more than me...I think they would enjoy it and my fiance would appreciate it. I want to show the boys I care about them and do not plan on taking their dad away from them.

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Ashley - posted on 04/17/2009

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Quoting Rebecca:
Not sure about doing vows for them. I could never have done that. BM may think you are overstepping the mark & even though it has nothing to do with her she could cause problems. Remember you are marrying their father, not them.


I want to start off by saying that I am a big supporter of co-parenting (SM and BM working together as much as possible for the betterment of the children). I've been doing this for about 6 years now and try my best to work with the BM. I overlook a lot in favor of her feelings to keep things stable and cordial on behalf of the kids.



That said, I totally disagree with Rebecca. When I married my husband, I did it with eyes wide open. I married him AND his two wonderful children. They come as a package deal, not as one or the other. When children are involved, marriage is the blending of a family, not just the pairing of two people. We solidified that by lighting a unity candle together as a new family (don't know if that's something that is traditionally done in a courtroom ceremony, but maybe an idea). I didn't do formal vows but wouldn't hesitate to do that if you feel that strongly and want to do something similar.



I also would recommend that you not be overly concerned about what the BM might think about you making vows to her children. These are your vows to do your part to be the best step-mom that you can. It has nothing to do with her and being overly concerned with her on *your* wedding day doesn't seem like a good way to start a marriage. You should be prepared as a new SM to work with her on behalf of HER children. But, not feel obligated to live all of your life around her feelings (especially on your wedding day). Its about the children, not her. (no offense Rebecca!)

Kelly - posted on 04/16/2009

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Hey, Marie!

I was married last May and now have two stepsons. I wanted to give them something during the ceremony, and decided on matching ID bracelets for all of us that have our last name on them. I spoke to our pastor about this and she found some family vows. I've heard of some people combining sand in a jar, too. There's lots you can do to make them feel included! Good luck!

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Julie - posted on 04/22/2009

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At our wedding, we wanted to make sure to include my stepdaughters (then 9 and 4). I let them decide whether they wanted to be flower girls or bridesmaids (they chose bridesmaids), so they walked down the aisle together just before I did. I found a copy of the Family Medallion Ceremony online, where the bride and groom actually exchange vows with the kids in addition to traditional vows. We modified the Medallion Ceremony so it was more to our liking, but it was a great place to start. Basically we both vowed to love, respect, cherish and protect the kids and make sure they were always the center of our life together as a family, and they vowed to respect and be a willing part of our new family. Then we gave each of them necklace (a small diamond and ruby pendant, to match my diamond & ruby engagement ring). It meant a lot to us to include them in the ceremony, and I think it meant a lot to them too (they were certainly very into it at the time), and there wasn't a dry eye in the house! Whatever you chose, good luck and congratulations!

Rebecca - posted on 04/20/2009

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Quoting Ashley:



Quoting Rebecca:
Not sure about doing vows for them. I could never have done that. BM may think you are overstepping the mark & even though it has nothing to do with her she could cause problems. Remember you are marrying their father, not them.






That said, I totally disagree with Rebecca. When I married my husband, I did it with eyes wide open. I married him AND his two wonderful children. They come as a package deal, not as one or the other. When children are involved, marriage is the blending of a family, not just the pairing of two people.



I didn't do formal vows but wouldn't hesitate to do that if you feel that strongly and want to do something similar.






Sorry Ashley if I offended you but no matter how wide your eyes might be when you go into this it can still be a lot harder than ever imagined.  My situation may be different to yours in that I had no children when I married DH so to ME it wasn't blending 2 families as such.



In my post  I said 'NOT SURE about doing vows for them'. It was not something I was comfortable with but it may be something that others may love the idea of. I did include my SD in our wedding, she was my flowergirl. She was the first on my list. It was actually DH that said he didn't want SD being a part of the day because he didn't see why she needed to be. I gave each of my 2 flowergirls a special teddybear to remember the day.



As for the vows I still personally feel that that is something sacred between the husband & wife but that is my PERSONAL opinion. There are plenty of other ways to include the children, some good ways have been mentioned above.

Denise - posted on 04/20/2009

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How about they walk in with dad? We had one walk with me and the other walk with my husband.

Alicia - posted on 04/19/2009

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My ss was our ring bearer. But I'm not sure how old your little guys are. We didn't get married in a court house either so I'm not exactly sure how that works. I say include them. Like I said our ss was our ring bearer, his mother was there to watch and her mother made my flowers. I included them in on everything...like it or not w/ her being bio mom she is in your life too...some how

Shennandoah - posted on 04/17/2009

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When my husband and I got married, we included his sons ( ages 6 & 5) in the wedding. They were his best little men! They walked with him down the aisle and stood there next to their Dad. They were proud to be the best men in their little suits. We didnt include them in the vows because it was hard enough for them to stay still during ceremony.

Kimi - posted on 04/17/2009

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Went to a wedding once where the step parents evchanged vows with the step kids. It was verysweet and left me a bit teary. You shoul definetly find a way to include them.

Amanda - posted on 04/17/2009

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When my husband and I got married my ss and sd were the ring bearer and flower girl. We also shared our first dance with them. He danced with his daughter and I danced with his son. Another nice thing I have seen is including them in your vows. Not only taking vows to a marriage, but vowing to be a family.

Di - posted on 04/17/2009

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My sd's were 12 and 11 and they were my junior bridesmaids. My sd's were happy to participate as long as the spotlight wasn't on them. It really does depend on what age they are at and how comfortable they are. Weddings really are big occasions to small children. My son was only 2 and although he was dressed to match the bridal party, the only participation of his was to walk down the aisle between his two sisters. I wrote our vows and part of them was a promise to help each other raise all our children equally. As to wether the BM liked it or not, I really couldn't have cared less. It was our wedding and no one else got a choice in what we did, so why should she?

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I have seen people do Unity Sand, instead of a Unity Candle. And each person gets a different color of sand and you would all pour it in either at the same time, or in layers. The sand mixed together shoes how your family has been mixed together. The colors can be the colors of your wedding or if the boys are old enough you can have them pick their favorite color to mix in.

Michelle - posted on 04/17/2009

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hi Marie,
We're getting married in 2 weeks, we included a vow to our children promising to do the best we can to love them and encourage them to reach their potential and respect them etc all the things that you may wish for them.We will be each mentioning all their names because he has two i have one and we have one together. So we not only make vows to the others' children but our own as well
our ceromony is very simple too at the beach, we were going to the court house but the magistrate actually live at this beach and it will cost us less then having to get her to drive back to the court house lol!
We bought the three girls each a ring to wear and keep (our babies will be put away for her )and the boy a watch.
We are having no attendants just our kids.
there are lots of little ceremonies like candle lighting etc too, i googled second weddings and step weddings and found heaps of ideas!
good luck and have a wonderful day!

Rebecca - posted on 04/17/2009

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It depends. I had my SD as one of my flowergirls. Maybe they could be the page boys or the ring bearer. Depends on their age & how much you want to include them. Not sure about doing vows for them. I could never have done that. BM may think you are overstepping the mark & even though it has nothing to do with her she could cause problems. Remember you are marrying their father, not them.

Jessica - posted on 04/16/2009

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Hi Marie! Congrats! We are planning on including my SD directly in the ceremony. We both have scottish heritage, so we are going to have her tie our hands together with his clan's tartan. It's an old tradition, but I think it will be like a symbol of her approval. I also plan on making vows to her after I give my vows to her dad. "I promise to love you as my own, and always put you first..." kind of thing.... Good luck!

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