The Role of the Step Mother of the Bride

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The Role of the Step Mother of the Bride

For every wedding there are so many relationships and personal dynamics at play. As a step-parent there is another layer that is very personal and that there is never going to be a one solution for. The relationship between a child and their step-parent can be as close as a biological parent or the absolute opposite side of the scale. No matter what the dynamic is, communication is going to be the most important tactic to reach the happiest resolution possible.

What to wear is one of the first questions you may be asking yourself. Because it’s already confusing enough for the biological mothers to discern (we’ve already written quite a bit about the topic) so of course it’s a difficult thing for step-mothers to navigate. The traditional order is for the mother of the bride to choose her dress first and then communicate that with the mother of the groom. The intention behind this is so that they can make sure they are not wearing anything too similar but still can convey a cohesiveness. The step-mother should not ever try to outshine the biological mothers. They also need to be careful not to wear the same color dress or anything too similar. If the mothers are planning on all wearing various shades of the wedding colors than that is fine. But it is best to choose a shade that compliments the wedding colors so as to not stand out.

How included the step-mother will be during the wedding preparation is completely reliant on the engaged couple. The main thing is to communicate that you want to be a part of the wedding preparation to whatever extent the engaged couple is comfortable with. After that it’s also important to communicate with the biological mother to make sure she is comfortable with whatever is decided. If communicating with the biological mother is not an option, see if there is a way to find out from the bride or groom without causing them any extra stress by being the messenger.  


Communication is key for the wedding day. Check with the engaged couple on the extent they would like you to be involved on the wedding day. There are so many pieces to that day that there’s a good chance the couple will be overwhelmed with details. So it’s important to remember that even if you feel overlooked then it’s still all about making sure that the couple feels happy on their special day. Burned bridges on the wedding day will carry over to the relationship for the rest of your lives. Also, your spouse will most likely need quite a bit of extra support on the day and it is such a special thing that they will not have to approach this task on their own.


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