With all the talk of weddings being “the bride’s day,” the groom may often be under the false impression that all they have to do is show up for the wedding ceremony. In actuality, it’s really best if the groom is involved as much as possible, both to support the bride and also to make the big day about two people joining together – not one person’s party.
Planning a wedding is hard work and takes a lot of time, therefore it’s unfair to heap all of that responsibility on the bride or her family members. Of course, hiring a professional wedding planner can do a lot to alleviate the pressure, but it’s still a nice gesture for the groom to be involved in the wedding-planning process. While not all men can be expected to have strong opinions on stationery or linens, finding a few aspects of the day to care about can make a big difference. Though he may feel like his responsibilities are complete after purchasing an engagement ring and proposing, the groom's responsibilities are far from over – unless his bride absolutely insists that he be completely surprised on the wedding day.
Though there are certainly some grooms who enjoy planning events and want to be part of the entire planning process from start to finish, that's certainly not always the case. Even if brides share with their grooms that they want to plan the entire celebration, the groom should still be available should she have questions.
What Are the Groom's Responsibilities?
Grooms most commonly show interest in the food and entertainment while wedding planning; however, many Inside Weddings grooms share that their best advice for other grooms is to not only let the bride have her day, but also be available to make decisions if she needs help. A number of our featured couples have stated that the groom was essentially the decision-maker if the bride couldn't decide on something – and above all else, offer their brides the support needed during the stressful planning process. If your groom just wanted to go to city hall and is doing a big wedding for your sake, below are some of the minimum requirements and responsibilities for grooms.
Wedding Planning Groom Responsibilities:
- Help with the guest list.
Many couples cite putting together the guest list as one of their most stressful aspects of the wedding planning process, so having him involved in this particular part of the big day can be a huge help to the bride – even if just for the moral support.
- Assist in organizing and creating the budget, unless the parents would like to host or the family pays for everything.
Deciding on a spending limit for the wedding day is one of the most important parts of the planning process as it essentially opens the gates for the other planning responsibilities. Make sure you're on the same page – you don't want your marriage to start out on the wrong foot.
- Choose a best man and groomsmen, if applicable.
The groom-to-be may also help choose other wedding-party members, such as flower girls and ring bearers, ushers, or even friends or loved ones who the couple may ask to do a reading at the ceremony.
- Select wedding attire for himself and groomsmen in the wedding party.
The bride may have a vision of how she wants the wedding party to dress, but the groom should take the lead on sharing the details with his groomsmen, organizing any tuxedo or suit rental options, etc.
- Get his travel documents for the honeymoon.
Unrelated to honeymoons, per se, the groom may also help organize contracts and paperwork related to wedding professionals and vendors.
- Traditionally, the groom was in charge of planning and paying for the honeymoon; however, nowadays couples often choose to do this together.
Though should you decide as a couple to have the groom organize the entire trip, by all means feel free to do so.
- Purchase the bride’s wedding band, and give both wedding bands to the best man for the ceremony.
If he also wants to hold on to the marriage license, that's an excellent way to keep two of the most important aspects of the ceremony secure and together.
- Transportation for the wedding party from the ceremony to the reception, if applicable.
Not all couples provide transportation – especially if the ceremony and reception are in the same location – but if you'll be having shuttles, trolleys, or cars take friends and family to a different venue, ask your groom to help out.
- Make decisions and offer opinions when asked by the bride.
Every bride will feel differently when it comes to planning, so follow the bride's lead. Even if she wants help deciding between napkin colors or something else that may seem insignificant to the groom, make sure to at least have some sort of opinion.
- If following tradition, the groom's parents or groom's family will host the rehearsal dinner, which means he should help pick the location and send out invitations.
The rehearsal dinner often sets the tone for the celebration, so if brides have opinions on the décor, grooms should consider them but also feel as though they can put their own stamp on the pre-wedding event.
- Pick out and give gifts to the groomsmen.
Some grooms will present their groomsmen with these gifts at the rehearsal dinner, while others will wait for the morning of the wedding while getting ready for the ceremony.
- Offer a simple wedding toast to express gratitude at the reception.
Thank your bride, both sets of parents, and all of your friends and family for making you who you are and joining you on your wedding day.
- Assist the bride with thank-you notes.
Even if the groom has horrible handwriting, he can still help organize the thank-you notes with his bride, stamp the return address on envelopes, or place postage stamps – any assistance will go a long way.