Originally created 05/17/98

Weddings are a place for healing old wounds

Dear Carson: This is in regard of the May 3 column about the bride who chose her stepfather to give her away.

When my son and daughter-in-law were married, both her father and her stepfather gave her away. She felt close to both of them and wanted both to share in her wedding day. She walked down the aisle on the arm of each of them.

When asked, "Who gives this woman?" they replied together, "We do." It was a very beautiful wedding, and everyone in attendance thought it was touching for her to have included both men. The minister even mentioned in the ceremony that they had both had a big impact on her life. Also, both families get along with each other's new spouses. That's how our "unusual situation" was handled. -- Evans Reader

Dear Evans: That's the way things should work out in an ideal world! Unfortunately, many times the occasions of weddings and funerals, where people's feelings are as fragile as lace, turn out to be times when people hurt each other.

These occasions are opportunities for healing bad relationships and for strengthening goods ones. Kudos to you and yours!

Dear Carson: My beau and I are contemplating marriage in 1999. We have both been married previously. His children range in age from 15 to 32, and my daughter is not quite 5 years old. Once we are married should I expect to be invited to his children's high school and college graduations, weddings, etc.? How do I maintain an "esprit de corps" and a high degree of decorum when at these events?I sense that my beau is a bit skittish about approaching these issues with his children. When we talk about it he says that he doesn't care what anyone thinks and that he has finally found the happiness that has eluded him for years.Incidentally, I was not the cause of his divorce and would be wounded if I were not invited to family events or if he went to a family event as if we were not married.

Do you have any pointers on blending families? We don't have to be bosom buddies, but I would like to maintain contact and share holidays and special occasions at times. -- Future Bride & Stepparent

Dear FB&S: Perhaps you are projecting disasters when there won't be any. When you marry you marry not only an individual but the family as well. You definitely should be included in such special events after you are married.

As for decorum, I encourage you to behave in a spirit of good will, friendship and courtesy. As for your role toward your older stepchildren it should be that of a friend rather than a parent.

Ask Carson a question of etiquette by calling INFOLINE at 442-4444 and pressing 4422. Write to Ask Carson, The Augusta Chronicle, P.O. Box 1928, Augusta, GA 30903-1928. Send e-mail to askcarson@mindspring.com


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