As some of you already know, I recently got married. Our ceremony and following celebration truly
Giving Away the Bride
I didn’t want my father to give me away at the wedding. I knew he would be disappointed that I didn’t want to follow this tradition, but I didn’t want to feel like property that was being transferred from one owner to the next. Let me be clear, my father never owned me and my husband doesn’t own me, I own me.
We even added Wiccan/Pagan opening remarks that asked the bride if she comes willingly and of her own accord to the ceremony text.
“Other would ask, at this time, who gives the bride in marriage, but, I ask simply if she comes of her own will and if she has her family’s blessing.”
Many of our society’s gender issues stem from the fact that fathers used to own their daughters and once used their them as currency. So next time you tear up watching a beaming father walk his little girl down the aisle, remember that not so long ago, fathers considered daughters as an opportunity to make money.
The Garter Toss
We didn’t do the garter toss. I wasn’t comfortable with the idea of having anyone go under my gown and throwing a piece of clothing to a bunch of single guys. I still purchased a beautifully personalised garter from AussieWeddingGaters on Etsy, but it was for my husband’s enjoyment only.
As our guests list formed, we also realised that there weren’t going to be many single men invited. Since I’m in my late 30s and my now husband is in his early 40s, most of our friends and family members are already married or in long term relationships.
In the 1500’s hundred, the bride and the groom would consummate their marriage right after the ceremony. Guests would require proof that they had done the deed, since taking the woman’s virginity was the completion of the transaction. This basically led to hordes of wedding guests crowding around the bed, pushing and shoving to get a good view of the couple having sex and hopefully to get their hands on a lucky piece of the bride’s dress as it was ripped from her body.
As time progressed, wedding guests were banned from the bedroom, but male guests were still encouraged to take the bride’s garter for luck. This wasn’t done nicely. The garter was removed by force. The bride was often tossed upside down or having their dress ripped to shreds.
Finally, the job of removing the garter went to the groom who tossed it like the wedding bouquet. There are tonnes of awkward videos of garter toss on youtube that will make you want to dump this tradition.
The Bouquet Toss
We didn’t do the bouquet toss. One reason was that my bouquet was handmade by a wonderful Etsy artist and there was no way I was giving it away. My mother suggested that I have a smaller bouquet prepared for the bouquet toss, but I still didn’t want to do it. In previous weddings I attended, some women took the bouquet tossing too seriously. At one wedding, in particular, a young girl of 8-years-of-age caught the bouquet and women were crying because it meant that the child would marry before they did. I didn’t want that at my wedding. As our guest list was created, we also came to the realisation that there was only one single woman invited. I would not put her in the spot of being the only adult woman standing there to catch the bouquet. What could possibly be more humiliating than being forced out to the centre of a parquet dance floor while a wedding DJ advertises your lack of a boyfriend and then being expected to further demonstrate your desperation by diving for flying flowers?