Your son and his girlfriend have finally got engaged after three years of courtship and fixed their wedding date. Nowadays, although the bride and groom take responsibility of arranging the wedding, the mother of the groom does have some important duties as well. Following these responsibilities is a good way of showing your happiness. Moreover, by involving yourself in preparations of the wedding, you can develop a bond with your daughter-in-law. Before you plan anything for the wedding, it is always better to inform them that you would be happy to help them. Tell them about the responsibilities that you will like to take and also that you will be also ready to take additional responsibilities if they want you to.
Meeting the Bride's Parents
Once the couple has announced the news of the marriage, it is a good gesture by the groom's parents to contact the bride's parents. The groom's mom must introduce herself and her husband to the girl's parents by calling them up. Arranging a small, informal get-together where both the parents can meet and get to know each other is a fabulous idea. There is no rule that the bride and the groom should be invited to this party. But if you feel that their presence can you more comfortable, you can surely do so. Nevertheless, if the bride's parents live in another city and will not be able to make a short visit, a phone call will be more than sufficient.
It is the responsibility of the groom's family to pay for the expenses of the engagement and wedding rings. Other than this, the groom's parents also have to pay for his wedding clothes for the groom's best men, bouquet for the bride, transportation expenses, etc. The mother of the groom has the duty to look after all these arrangements. As, in today's world, most of the wedding expenses are handled by the couple themselves, and these traditional customs may not be followed. However, you may inform that you are ready to help them financially, if the need arises.
If you have any wedding traditions that are followed in your family, inform them to the bride and the groom before they make all the arrangements for the wedding ceremony. However, one must remember that as many couples are opting for informal wedding ceremonies, it is not necessary that they will incorporate them in the wedding. Hence, you must keep an open mind and accept their decision with a positive mind.
Party for the Bride
Though this is not very necessary, organizing a party involving extended family members will be a great way of introducing them to the bride. This need not be a lavish party, rather just a simple dinner or maybe a barbecue in your backyard will be fine.
Selecting the Dress for the Wedding
Though you must be really excited to start shopping for your own dress for the wedding, you have to wait till the bride's party have done theirs. Your dress should coordinate with what the bride's mother is wearing. If she has opted for a ballroom dress, you will have to buy the same thing. On the other hand, if she has bought a cocktail dress, make it a point that you select a cocktail dress too. However, the color of the dresses should not match. Also, make sure that the color of your dress is not similar to that of the bridesmaids.
Making the Guest List
One of the responsibilities also entails you to create a guest list and give it to the bride. However, before making the list, do not forget to ask the bride and the groom the number of guests for the wedding. This will depend on the type of wedding they have decided on i.e. whether they want a grand affair or a low key one. If they are opting for the latter, and you think that you have cut down on your guest list considerably, you can arrange for a reception, a few days after the wedding for the uninvited friends.
Another important responsibility is arranging the rehearsal dinner for the wedding. The rehearsal dinner need not be as elaborate as the actual wedding one, and it can be a simple affair with finger foods and salads served in paper plates. However, if you want to make the rehearsal dinner a grand affair, no one will surely stop you from doing this. Though you can cut down on the food and decorations, remember that you have to include all the guests that you are planning to call to the wedding.
Duties before the Wedding Day
The mother of the groom has to attend the bridal shower and also should give her soon-to-be daughter-in-law a gift. It will also be great if she arrives before the shower and helps in making the necessary arrangements, and help with the decorations. Another way in which she can help is by personally calling up the guests who have not replied to the RSVP by the time that they were expected to.
Wedding Day Duties
The groom's mother will be led through the aisle by one of the groomsmen or the groom himself, followed by her husband and will be seated on the first row of the right hand side. She also has to light the family candle with the mother of the bride, before the wedding party comes in.
These are some of the responsibilities that you as the groom's mother have to follow. One important thing that you have to remember is that though you can give your opinions and advice to the couple for planning the wedding, do not force your suggestions on them. Remember that after all it is their wedding and they have all the right to make it as they want it to be. By being too authoritative, you may actually spoil the relationship between your son and his wife. Hence, ask them what help they expect from you and enjoy the special day of your child.