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Why do women still get "given away"

(143 Posts)
ledkr Sun 26-Jun-11 18:10:14

I went to wedding yesterday and was surprised to see the woman being given away by her father.I havent been to that many weddings and dont think ive ever been as near the front before but the father actually placed his daughters hand into her grooms.
I am married and was certainly not given away.
It got me thinking that i guess as this is part of a traditional ceremony that many women go along with this archaic custom.
What a shame.
Am i just being picky?

Yama Sun 26-Jun-11 18:12:38

I'd guess that people get caught up in the romance of the occasion and don't like to make a fuss. Same as name changing.

garlicnutter Sun 26-Jun-11 18:14:12

It makes your dad feel important?

ledkr Sun 26-Jun-11 18:15:05

I hope my daughters dont do it,i know its not a big deal in the grand scheme of things but it struck me as one of those little things that still hangs on illustrating thatwe are still though of as posessions. Man and Wife. <<pukes>>

Yama Sun 26-Jun-11 18:15:07

Our dd who is 5 has asked that both dh and I walk her down the isle when she gets married. It's a start I suppose. I do say to her that life is not all about getting married but her school really went to town on the Royal Wedding (grrr) and it's hard to undo the propaganda.

dittany Sun 26-Jun-11 18:15:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BeerTricksPotter Sun 26-Jun-11 18:18:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ledkr Sun 26-Jun-11 18:19:00

My Dad walked me down the aisle but didnt actrually hand me over like a new car grin
dittany im not sure that all men would equate that but it certainly doesnt help does it?

Bunbaker Sun 26-Jun-11 18:19:35

I guess it is a choice theses days, and if some women still chose to be given away who are we to argue against it?

I agree that it is an old tradition that has little relevance in the 21st century though.

ledkr Sun 26-Jun-11 18:21:19

beertricks I think thats it yes,there are many things that "people just do" in life,if we never challenged them imagine where we would still be.
We used to not have careers and look after our men folk. Im thinking more women should remove that silly custom from their weddings.

ledkr Sun 26-Jun-11 18:23:24

Oh yes,and the fact that the bride or any other female relation doesnt give a speech. I want to get married again just so i can make a speech.
Its hot here,im feeling a bit prickly.

edam Sun 26-Jun-11 18:23:56

It is rather horrible. But I imagine many people just consider it a tradition and a nice way to give their fathers a role at the wedding.

My father walked me down the stairs (we got married in the hall of of a rather grand manor house with a sweeping staircase) and I was VERY glad of his firm arm to lean on. But he certainly did not hand me over to dh. I can't quite remember how it worked but I think he just stood aside at the bottom of the stairs and I walked to dh on my own. We wrote our own vows so there was no 'who gives this woman' nonsense.

edam Sun 26-Jun-11 18:26:07

Oh, I gave a speech because I wasn't going to let the men do all the talking! Only I didn't really want to give a full speech so I thanked everyone for coming and gave special thanks to all the people who had helped us with particular jobs, especially my Mother and a dear family friend. Had arranged with my bridesmaids to present bouquets to Mother and friend, which worked out very nicely. I was very pleased to acknowledge the women of the family instead of all the glory to the men.

BeerTricksPotter Sun 26-Jun-11 18:27:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bunbaker Sun 26-Jun-11 18:30:41

I didn't give a speech because it wasn't expected of me and it never occurred to me to do so. I wouldn't have wanted to anyway. OH said he didn't enjoy the wedding until after his speech because he felt too nervous about getting up and speaking in front of a roomful of people.

ledkr Sun 26-Jun-11 18:31:32

Im so glad to find people who aggree,my friends all said it was just tradition but id really like to see it dropped. Dh agrees,he's never really thought about it but can see its a bit ridiculous.

Riveninside Sun 26-Jun-11 18:32:33

Didnt do any of that nonesense grin
mind yiu, my dad had passed away so it would have been tricky. We did a registry office with just parents and sibs then went to the pub

ledkr Sun 26-Jun-11 18:33:32

Sharing the speech is nice,we actually spoke to our guests as part of the service as id had cancer and wanted to thank everyone for their help.It was lovely.

adamschic Sun 26-Jun-11 18:36:05

It's part of the traditional ceremony that is a wedding. I hope DD doesn't want someone to give her away if she gets married. Her dad isn't involved (he's not going to be invited anyway) and I'm not sure I could bring myself to do it.

allhailtheaubergine Sun 26-Jun-11 18:41:41

"It's just what you do"

Yes, like changing your name.

I do think it's important to continually challenge these unpleasant little 'traditions'. In a nice way, because you don't win friends by being disparaging about "the most important day of a girl's life" <rolls eyes so hard they actually pop out of their sockets>.

Similarly, I didn't get my children christened because I am not a Christian. This shocked and horrified many people - not the fact that I am an Athiest, but the fact that I didn't get my children christened anyway; "it's just what you do".

PurpleStrawberry Sun 26-Jun-11 18:54:01

My dad walked me down the aisle but he did not give me away. You can choose to omit the 'who gives this woman' line and we did just that.

My dad didn't want to 'give me away' but it meant a lot to him to escort me down the aisle. I wasn't going to deny him that.

As for speeches, there is nothing to stop the bride or any other woman giving a speech at a wedding, times have moved on there. I have been to plenty of weddings where the bride has delivered her own speech OR the bride and groom did a double act. I made a speech at my wedding, and so did my mum, and I offered my MIL the chance but she said no (mainly as she didn't want DH to marry me).

ledkr Sun 26-Jun-11 19:00:06

You must just have cooler friends than me purple grin Id hate to think what my mil would have said if she'd made a speech. "run for the hills son" most probably.


Message withdrawn

MrsCog Sun 26-Jun-11 19:04:12

My Dad 'gave me away', I didn't really give it a second thought (probably because I am so much my very own independent person!), but in hindsight, I wish I'd walked down the aisle with him (as I think it's a nice tradition to walk down with a family member) but not had the given away/handswapping in the ceremony, but I just didn't really think at the time. It is something I would gently raise now though.

PurpleStrawberry Sun 26-Jun-11 19:11:26

ledkr - mine would have said something similar, with a mention of the fact I am not a 'proper' English person as I was born to Latin American immigrants!! Lovely woman my MIL.

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