Involving Stepchildren in Wedding Plans
While children may have mixed feelings about the remarriage of one of their parents, involving a step child in the wedding plans can be a good way to win them over. Wedding planning is fun and exciting, and few children can resist the appeal of participating in such a happy event.
Telling Kids about the EngagementIdeally, children will be well prepared before they are asked to welcome a stepparent into their lives and homes. While children should not be introduced to every person that their single parents may date, once a parent feels that someone is going to play an important role in their life, they should carefully integrate the relationship into their children’s lives. By the time that a couple is ready to be engaged, the children should have been given time to develop friendly and caring relationships with their potential stepparent.
If parents have allowed their kids and their significant other the time and space to develop close bonds, the children are not likely to be taken by surprise when the couple decides to marry. Hopefully, the announcement is welcomed and the kids feel emotionally connected to the person who is to become a member of their family. By giving everyone the opportunity to get to know one another well before becoming a family, the transition should be easier and more comfortable.
Giving Children a Role in the Wedding PlanningWho doesn’t love being a part of a wedding? The excitement of creating just the right atmosphere to make guests feel welcomed as well as witnessing the happiness of two people in love as they begin their lives together make weddings very special occasions for not only the couple, but for members of the wedding party and guests, too. There are many ways that children can help with wedding plans, depending on their ages. Young kids can help to assemble invitations and apply postage to envelopes, older children may be able to offer input about reception locations and music selections, and kids of all ages can be asked for their opinions about colours, themes, and possible additions to the guest list.
Involving Stepchildren in the Wedding CeremonyBeing asked to be a part of someone’s wedding party is a considerable honour, so involving a stepchild in the ceremony sends the message that they are highly valued and appreciated. Whether they are preschool aged or fully grown, stepchildren are sure to be flattered by their parents’ invitation to stand beside them as they take their vows.
While small weddings may not allow for every member of large families to stand at the altar, there are still ways that everyone can be included in the ceremony. Those who are old enough can be asked to light candles, sing or play a song on a musical instrument, share a favourite memory, guide guests to their seats, or read a meaningful passage. Small children can hold flowers or sprinkle flower petals along the aisle.
It’s important to make everyone feel involved and important and to dole out tasks in an equitable fashion. When asking children to participate in planning a wedding or standing up at the actual ceremony, both members of the couple need to see to it that all of the children have the chance to be included. They may prefer (and their wishes should be honoured) not to take a greater part than simply attending, but if one child is asked, each should be. For many stepfamilies, the wedding is one of the first opportunities that they have to unite, so including everyone is a wonderful way to make each family member feel loved and involved.