The father of the groom often doesn’t get the recognition he deserves at a wedding.Author: Niamh
The father of the groom often doesn’t get the recognition he deserves at a wedding. After all it is the father of the bride who, traditionally, gets to toast the couple. That is not to say that the groom’s father should not also give a speech at the wedding breakfast. It’s worth remembering that without him there would be no wedding at all!
The speeches are often the highlight of the day. Whether they are good or bad they will be remembered for either of those reasons. Certainly the bride and groom will want whatever you choose to say to impress their guests.
There is no doubt but that the best man often relays stories about the groom. Usually, though, these comments will be about shared escapades or funny incidents. He will speak as a brother or a peer. As the father of the groom though you will have a far deeper knowledge of the groom. So your speech can be more intimate and more revealing. You can speak about the day he was born, his first day at school or what a kind son he is. You can tell about his struggle with maths or his penchant for playing football when he ought to have been studying. You can speak of his teenage years and how you were tempted to put him up for adoption. Naturally too you can speak of his lovely bride and what an asset she is to your family.
You have one advantage over any other speaker in that you can always consult the groom’s mother for facts. It is almost certain that she will have fond memories of her son’s growing years. Definitely too women are usually more involved in the day to day running of family life. So she should be able to give you any background information you might require.
You are the guest of honour at the wedding so your speech should be gracious in tone. If you are not helping to pay for the event you should speak of your enjoyment of the wonderful hospitality of your hosts. If you are paying something towards the costs then speak of your delight in seeing so many family members and friends gathered for the occasion. Speak too of hoping to get to know those guests you haven’t met previously.
Above all speak of your delight in seeing your son so happy on his big day. You don’t toast the couple but you should end with a blessing or a good luck wish of some sort. Try to make it one that resonates with the couple. If they are sailors, for instance, speak of following winds and calm seas. If they are involved in dramatics wish them a long playing marriage. In other words wish them all they would wish themselves. You may have lost a son and gained a daughter but if you give a good speech you will also gain the respect of all those present and your son will be very proud of his dad.