Blending Two Families
For all their joy, weddings are sometimes charged with potentially explosive situations, namely the feelings of divorced parents, stepparents and children-either yours or your groom’s.
Include the children in all appropriate prenuptial planning and festivities. Be sensitive to their reactions. No matter what the relationship is with the former wife or husband, be amicable in discussing wedding plans involving the children.
Schedule a special visit with your clergyman so he can meet the children. Many ceremonies include vows for children, emphasizing the formation of the new family and recognizing their place in it. Ask the children if they want to participate in such vows, and respect their decision and feelings.
If children choose only to attend the wedding as guests, accept this decision gracefully. Make arrangements for special seating, perhaps just before your parents are seated.
Include the children in the receiving line, even if they did not participate in the actual ceremony. Introduce them in their old and new roles. For example, “This is John’s son and my stepson, Michael.”
As important as it is that the children understand that the new parent is in a sense marrying them, too, it is also important that they respect the new relationship between the two adults. So, if you take a honeymoon trip right after the wedding, take it alone. Plan a special family trip later but reserve the honeymoon just for you and your groom.
Avoid making assumptions-about anything. Be open and communicate with children. Including them in the nuptial ceremony can enhance the wedding and lend a firm base to your new, blended family.
You can also involve the children as part of the ceremony by giving them family medallions, to signify their importance and unity in your new lives together!