Stepparents: Does Biological Father Have to Partake in Wedding?

by The Knot

I'm in an awful parent-stepparent bind. I've already decided that my stepfather will walk me down the wedding aisle. He is my father, my daddy, my confidante. But there is this other man in my life: my bio dad. My bio dad's wife threatened my relationship with him if he didn't walk me down the wedding aisle. I'm just not sure if I should even have him participate in any of the wedding events, such as the wedding receiving line or the father-daughter dance.


It's always difficult when you have a stepdad who you love and respect and a biological father who -- well, who's your father. But it seems you've made up your mind that your stepdad should walk you down the aisle, and you should not feel obligated to change that. If your stepdad is the person you really feel has been a father to you, then he should be the one to escort. What to do about your birth father is a more difficult question, especially because his wife has threatened you if you don't do what they want. Still, the best thing to do is make your decisions about that based on how you feel about him, not on what someone else told you to do. Some possibilities: You might decide to not have any dads in the receiving line, instead letting them circulate and chat with guests so you won't run into any awkwardness there. You could let your bio dad and his wife host their own table of guests. If you're comfortable with it and you both want to, you and bio dad could do a father-daughter dance. But again, these things should happen because you want them to. If you don't but you do them anyway out of a sense of obligation, these activities will feel forced. Perhaps you should sit down with bio dad and talk it out. Just remember that it's your wedding day. Call upon all your family members to try and coexist for your sake. Best of luck.

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