Skip to Content

Does the father give the bride away at a second wedding?

Many brides dream of being walked down the aisle by their father, who is often seen as a symbol of strength and protection. However, what happens if you are a second-time bride? Do you still have the option of being given away by your father, or is this tradition considered inappropriate for weddings after the first?

The Origins of Giving the Bride Away

The tradition of the father giving away the bride dates back to a time when women were essentially considered property. In ancient times, fathers would offer their daughters as a way to gain favor with strong, influential men. During the Middle Ages, marriage was seen as a business arrangement, and brides were married off to the highest bidder. The father would give the bride to the groom in exchange for a dowry, which was essentially payment for taking her off his hands.

Over time, this tradition evolved into what we know today. Rather than being a financial transaction, the father’s role shifted to symbolize his blessing and support of his daughter’s union. As women gained more independence and control over their lives, the act of giving the bride away became less about transferring ownership and more about the emotional significance of a father-daughter relationship.

What to Consider Regarding the Tradition of the Father Giving the Bride Away

If you are a second-time bride, there are a few things to consider before deciding whether or not you want your father to give you away:

Family Dynamics

Your relationship with your family is an essential consideration when deciding who will walk you down the aisle. If you have a close relationship with your father that is still intact, you might want him to be the one to give you away. However, if he’s no longer in your life or has passed away, you might choose a different family member or even a close friend to take on the role.

Your Personal Feelings and Preferences

Ultimately, this decision comes down to your personal feelings and preferences. You might not want to participate in this tradition the second time around, and that’s perfectly fine. You can still honor your father by having him participate in another meaningful way, such as leading a prayer or making a toast.

Your Partner’s Desires

Finally, your partner’s wants and opinions matter. Having a discussion with your partner about the tradition of giving the bride away can help build a stronger sense of understanding between the two of you. Your partner may also have ideas or preferences about how they would like the wedding ceremony to proceed.

Alternatives to Traditional Father Giving Away the Bride

If you decide not to have your father give you away, here are a few alternatives to consider:

Walking Down the Aisle Alone

Many modern brides choose to walk down the aisle alone or to be escorted by a child or other loved one. This option can be particularly meaningful if you don’t want to defer to tradition and would instead make a statement about your unique and independent personality.

A Special Family Member

You might have a special family member, such as a grandparent, aunt, or uncle, who might be the best fit to give you away. Rather than focusing on the father-daughter relationship, this might be a way to honor another important person in your life.

A Friend

You might opt to have a close friend accompany you down the aisle. This could be an excellent choice if you’ve been through challenging times together, and the friend has been a source of strength and support. This option can add an additional touch of personalization and meaning to the ceremony.

Both Parents

If you and your partner want to pay tribute to both sets of parents, you could have them both walk you down the aisle. This option can symbolize the joining of two families and the love and support from both sides.


The decision whether or not to follow the tradition of having your father give you away at a second wedding is ultimately up to you. Figuring out what role you’d like your father to play, along with considering your family dynamics and personal feelings, can help you create a ceremony that’s truly unique and special.


Do you give less for a second wedding?

When it comes to gifting for a second wedding, there are a few factors that should be taken into consideration. It is important to keep in mind that second weddings are usually more low-key and intimate than first weddings. Therefore, it may be acceptable to give a less grandiose gift than what you may have given for the first wedding.

However, it is important to remember that a gift is not a requirement for a second wedding. Generally, traditional etiquette suggests that those who gave a present for the first wedding are not obligated to give another gift for a second wedding. Nevertheless, if you are close to a remarrying bride or groom, you may want to give them a gift as a way to show your support and offer congratulations on this new milestone in their life.

If you do decide to purchase a gift for a second wedding, it is best to keep it simple and thoughtful. Some popular options for second wedding gifts include personalized items such as monogrammed towels or robes, a kitchen gadget or appliance that they may have forgotten to put on their registry, a gift card for a local restaurant or experience, or a contribution towards the couple’s honeymoon fund.

The decision of how much or what to gift for a second wedding is a personal choice. The most important thing is to make sure that your present reflects your relationship with the couple and is given with genuine love and support.