Home » Wedding Roles » Groom's Parents
The parents of the groom traditionally had very little involvement in planning and arranging their son's wedding.
These days it's common for both sets of parents to be involved in planning the big day, helping to compile the guest list and contributing financially. On hearing the news of your son's engagement, one of the first things to do is write to the parents of the bride-to-be to welcome them to your family. If you haven't already met, why not suggest a time where you can meet up and get to know one another.
Planning the big day
The next step will be to find out how much help is required. It's a good idea to get together with the bride & groom and parents of the bride to discuss who will pay for what and what needs to be done and by whom. If you find this embarrassing, find the time to speak with your son and let him know how you hope to help with the day. Don't be surprised if the bride & groom plan on planning and arranging the whole thing themselves.
Even if the bride & groom are 100% hands on, there will always be something you can help with. They may not be able to think of anything in the early stages of their wedding planning, but as the wedding day approaches your help will soon be needed. Don't take offence if your help is not required - if anything, you'll be able to enjoy the day without worrying about a thing.
Agreeing the budget
Weddings were traditionally paid for by the father of the bride; nowadays there are no set rules. Some parents provide the bride & groom with a sum of money whilst others prefer to organise and pay for specific items. If you opt for the latter, make sure you are aware of the costs, which seem to increase year on year. If you don't want to be involved in the organisation of particular aspects then you might want to give the couple a lump sum for them to make payments as and when they are required.
Agreeing the wedding budget is one of the first decisions to be made, so try to let your son know how much you will be contributing as soon as you can so they know how much they have to spend.
Guest lists - deciding who to invite
One of the things you may be asked to help with is that of deciding who to invite. Limited budgets and venue capacity can make the guest list a contentious topic. In an ideal world it would be lovely to invite all the family but not if it is at the expense of inviting their friends. Remember, it is their wedding so try to find a happy medium. Visit our wedding guest list section for more help and advice on creating the guest list.
If you are helping to contribute towards the wedding, it is perfectly acceptable not to buy your son and new daughter-in-law anything as wedding present. If your contribution is your wedding gift to them, make it clear up front that this money will be your wedding gift to them.
If you decide to buy a wedding gift and need ideas, why not buy them something for the house. Household appliances and furniture are popular choices and not something they are likely to put on their wedding gift list.