Second Wedding Ceremonies
Celebrating A New Beginning
Getting married a second time provides the couple with more freedom as it pertains the wedding ceremony and reception. The big "fairy tale" wedding is no longer a necessity; chances are you already had that style of wedding. That's not to say a second wedding can't be a big, extravagant affair. The benefit of a second wedding is it can really be anything you want. As you're likely older and wiser your second wedding is more about your wants and needs, rather than the expectations of others.
Prior to applying for the marriage license you will need to establish your single status. This could be providing proof of divorce or a death certificate if widowed. Other legalities should be considered, such as guardianship of your children, inheritance (if widowed) and changing your name (for women).
With that hurdle cleared you are now free to plan your wedding ceremony. If you're writing your own vows or are considering a non-religious wedding ceremony your options are fairly open. It's only when you want a religious wedding ceremony that you may encounter some difficulties. Unfortunately, some churches frown on divorce and may decline to perform your wedding ceremony. If this is the case you may have to "shop around" to find a more sympathetic minister who is willing to officiate the wedding.
Although some may be tempted to re-create their first wedding ceremony, as a word of advice, don't. Your second wedding ceremony should reflect who you are now, your current hopes and dreams and the new life you're about to begin with your partner. Your previous wedding ceremony should remain in your past and your memories alone.
If you have kids you may decide to include them in your second wedding ceremony. They could join you in a family unity candle ceremony, sing or recite a reading. However, if the remarriage is difficult for your kids to cope with it may be easier for them to simply attend the wedding, rather than be an active participant.
As for who walks the bride down the aisle it can be anyone the bride chooses. Although you are welcome to ask your father, you're not required to do so. You can ask your son or a favorite male relative. Or perhaps you'll decide to walk down the aisle alone, as a symbol of your independence. Another great option is to walk down the aisle with the groom.
Remember that a second wedding ceremony is just as important as a first wedding. It deserves the same respect and excitement - so do what makes you happy.