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Father of the bride speeches...

(17 Posts)
minko Sat 05-Sep-09 21:11:36

I have to help my dad write his... He's never been to many weddings, his own was in Germany and was all a bit different. He hasn't a clue what to say.

So I've been looking up tips on t'net but it's all v. sentimental stuff that I could never imagine my dad saying. And If I'm telling him what to say I can't TELL him to say he's proud of me and all that schmaltz. I know he is but it's not his style to tell everyone.

Being shown up by my slightly unconventional/eccentric parents is a good part of the reason I've put off getting married until the great age of 39! I love my dad very much but he's not the sort to share sentiment with all my friends at my wedding...

So what the hell should he say!?

fishie Sat 05-Sep-09 21:14:07

a) whatever he wants to
b) nothing

minko Sat 05-Sep-09 21:15:31

I wish we could go with option b, but he does want to do his 'duty'.
If we went for option a, we might end up with a lecture on the narrow gauge railways of north Wales or somesuch...

cyteen Sat 05-Sep-09 21:17:29

Ask him what he wants to say. If he's that keen to 'do his duty', he must have some idea.

tribpot Sat 05-Sep-09 21:20:50

I can totally understand both your desire and his for a father-of-the-bride speech. But it sounds like it could end in disaster.

So what would you say. As the daughter-of-the-father-of-the-bride? Maybe that would help?

If he genuinely doesn't know what to say - and god knows, I wouldn't - why not just let him stand up and say "I am truly grateful to be here today to see my daughter get married, and I wish her and her new husband every good thing in life. To the bride and groom! <ker-ching of champers glasses>" The sentiment is the thing.

PortAndLemon Sat 05-Sep-09 21:21:18

He can say whatever he wants, but if you're looking for a suitable "traditional" structure...

1. Thank everyone on both sides for coming.
2. Describe what the bride is like; typically this is done with reference to a couple of light-hearted anecdotes about your childhood.
3. Segue into talking about your new husband -- could cover some or all of how the two of you met, how you introduced him to your parents, what he felt when he heard you were getting married. If you have DCs already, talk about them and about you, your DH and the DCs as a family unit.
4. Look forward to a long and happy marriage for the two of you and offer some words of advice (either profound or light-hearted).
5. Propose a toast to the bride and groom.

SorryDoIKnowYou Sat 05-Sep-09 21:22:08

Would he be able to flesh it out if you gave him there bare bones?

"I was proudest of minko when ...(his bit).., I'm so pleased she met Mrminko, he's...()... I'm surprised she met someone happy to marry her though as when she was a child she...(insert anecdote when you announced yourself anti-men/gave up wearing clothes for a week aged 4)..!"

Sorry my example not the greatest but could he provide the details from his heart if you or someone else or the internet gave him a framework?

minko Sat 05-Sep-09 21:22:38

He thought he could get away with welcoming everyone and doing a toast. That's not really a 'speech' though..?

RedLentil Sat 05-Sep-09 21:24:07

I've done this for my dad twice.

My bet is that if you write a draft, he will immediately say 'I can't say that' and identify what he would be prepared to say instead.

Or swear he will say it and then rewrite it on the morning.

I think the general formula is:

Thank everyone for coming. Story about you being lovely when you were small/ ref to things you used to do together. Expression of disbelief that you are grown up. Expression of happiness at seeing in the audience friends of yours he has known over the years. Declaration of affection for your DH. Thank everyone again. Toast. Sit down.

The story about how I inadvertently wrote his speech for my own wedding is too blush to share.

Good luck and have a wonderful day.

minko Sat 05-Sep-09 21:24:52

Yes, I was going to give him a framework and hope for the best. My parents have been banging on about us getting married for years so I told him to tell everyone why he thought it was so important... That am rhapsodise about their 40 year anniversary this year.

minko Sat 05-Sep-09 21:26:07

Redlentil - good tips! I want to hear that story now though!

RedLentil Sat 05-Sep-09 21:33:15

Well, I'm the eldest of four girls.
When I was younger I had to babysit for the others who are 16 months, 4 years and 7 years younger than me.

When other people babysat they were lovely. When I babysat they were the hounds of hell. One day when I was about 14, I was upstairs reading a book and there was an almighty crash. Dsis1 ran up and told me Dsis2 was trapped and bleeding heavily downstairs.

This wasn't true. A cupboard had fallen off the wall. I was traumatised and the girls were in hysterics.

Anyhow, pompous ass that I am was, I went upstairs and wrote a resignation letter in which I explained why I would never babysit for the others again.

A brief snippet goes along these lines: 'You may decide to leave Dsis1 in charge now. I strongly urge you not to. Doing this would be like putting a lunatic in charge of an asylum.' blush

Anyway, my dad just read the whole, very long letter out and brought the house down.

It was very blush and very grin.

zippy539 Sat 05-Sep-09 21:34:22

TBH I don't see why he can't just make a toast and wish you well - there's no reason why you have to go with convention at weddings - just do whatever is right for your family. My Dad didn't make a speech at my wedding (he's a very private/shy man) so my Mum did it instead (with MORTIFYING consequences - she is NOT private/shy...).

minko Sat 05-Sep-09 21:44:03

Haha redlentil! I am slightly anxious that my teenage diaries are still in their loft now though... they'd better not turn to them for inspiration!

Perhaps you're right zippy, we need to keep it simple. I'd be embarrassed and he'd be embarrassed if he had to start getting mushy. My parents are the sort who always buy blank greeting cards as the ones with verses inside they find too sickly.

slowreadingprogress Sat 05-Sep-09 21:54:05

there's only one bit of advice that counts. Keep. It. Short.

brimfull Sat 05-Sep-09 22:04:42

no need to be mushy at all imo

my dad's speech was hilarious

all the waiters and kitchen staff came out to listen and were pissing themselves at his stories about my childhood antics

spiralqueen Sun 06-Sep-09 19:58:55

Minko be careful how he words his thoughts - I was in similar situation and my dad dropped the odd phrases in like "finally off our hands" which made it sound like I'd been living at home sponging off them continually when I'd actually left home over 20 years earlier. Loads of people came up to me at the reception and commented on how he sounded desperate to be rid of me. (or perhaps he had meant it? hmm)

Also get him to check with the groom and best man about what they are going to say - Dad didn't at my sister's wedding and thanked all and sundry at length for their contributions which was the main part of the groom's speech.

But above all keep it short. Thanks for coming and a toast is fine.

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