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Ms Chase
Ms Chase, Just Answer Wedding Mentor
Category: Wedding
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Experience:  Wedding Planning, Decorator, Special Event Coordinator, Publicist, General Ettiquette
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What is etiquette after a couple has eloped

Resolved Question:

My daughter got married 8-31-07 and didn''t tell me or her dad until 11-29-07. Now she wants to affirm her vows in a church with bridesmaids, etc in June 2008. Is this acceptable? How do we style an invitation and reception? Are typical before the wedding "showers" still okay to have? Must we give the date of the original marriage? Is she allowed to wear a traditional wedding dress?We are really embarrassed with all of this but if there is any way to still celebrate the marriage "after the fact" we would like to. We are sorry that this very important decision was made in such a poor way. Will all of this celebrating now seem like a way to "extract gifts?" Should we say "No gifts please" What in the world is acceptable with this very untraditional request on the part of my daughter. (This is his second wedding and her first - and this is our only daughter).
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Wedding
Expert:  Ms Chase replied 6 years ago.

Debbie,

Really, gone are the days when people followed exact etiquette, so many things are different nowadays. If when they eloped, they did not use a reverend/pastor/priest, they may feel that it's important to have that done. It's really up to the family on both sides how much they want to put in or be involved in the wedding. Don't be embarrassed, everyone makes mistakes, and you have a beautiful daughter and a new son in law who are simply having second thoughts about how they handled it. You can "unmarry" them, but it's ok to give her a shower. As long as everyone is clear that this is "after the fact", then it's really up to them if they want to come, and/or give a shower gift. I'm sure many people will be glad to support her, even now and if not, they certainly do not have to participate. Technically she probably should not wear a traditional dress, or have the pomp typical of a first wedding, but truthfully if this is what she wants, who can tell her no? I would not say anything about bringing or not bringing gifts. People can make their own decision about whether or not they want to bring a gift, even if all you had was a reception. If it were my daughter, I would counsel her about having an all in one event, where they exchange vows and have the reception in the same place/hall/etc. However if a church wedding is extremely important to her, I would probably let her. As you said, this is your only daughter, and its a once in a lifetime chance. Maybe not exactly how you would have wanted it, but at least she's willing to try and make up for it in a way.

I welcome your thoughts, let me know if you want to talk more

Warmly

Chase

Ms Chase, Just Answer Wedding Mentor
Category: Wedding
Satisfied Customers: 2897
Experience: Wedding Planning, Decorator, Special Event Coordinator, Publicist, General Ettiquette
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