Walk The Line

I realize that I’m an oddball sometimes, so here’s another one of those times.

I hate, hate, hate the tradition of being walked down the aisle and being given away. Seriously, the idea of being walked down the aisle by someone freaks me out and makes me incredibly uncomfortable.

From the first time I imagined my own wedding (and let’s be honest, I was probably like four), I have always wanted to walk myself down the aisle. I’m not even completely sure why, but I’ve always have felt this way.

Image via Delightfully Engaged / Photo by Morgan Trinker

She looks so radiant walking down the aisle by herself.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my parents and this really isn’t about them. And maybe that’s what so weird about this. Looking for information about this online brings up many people who want to walk themselves because they have non-existent relationships with their fathers or their father has passed on, and it seems perfectly okay in that case. But I don’t seem to find many stories about people who choose to walk down the aisle by themselves for other reasons.

I’ve been thinking about it for a while now, trying to pinpoint exactly what aspect makes me uncomfortable, and I think a big part of it is the symbolism bothers me. I am an adult who has been living on her own for a while now. I feel that be handed from one man to another almost implies that all of my individual achievements are insignificant, that what I bring to our marriage isn’t enough. Furthermore, the relationship I have with PBear is something that is very personal and something that is solely ours. Together, we have already been though so much. We’ve managed to survive college and much of grad school, we have built a wonderful life together, and PBear has been by my side through not one, but two surgeries. We have seen the good and the bad together and have come out stronger. I see very little of our lives actually changing after our vow exchange and I think that’s a good thing. Thus, for us, the giving part of the wedding equation seems out of place.

I have to admit, a big part of my reluctance is the seeming acceptance of walking down the aisle by yourself that occurs in many movies and TV shows.

For example, Sound of Music, my absolute favorite movie when I was little:

Source: Sound of Music

Doesn’t she look regal walking down the aisle by herself?

or Charlotte in SATC:

Source: Sex and the City

(Okay, so I’m totally cheating with this one shot of Charlotte. She manages to pick up a random guy’s arm when she finally makes it down the aisle, but the first three failed attempts, there doesn’t look like there’s anyone else at all in the shot. I maintain my case still stands.)

Lastly, I’m glad that main stream media are showing that there are different acceptable options. I love this shot of Tom and Violet in The Five-Year Engagement coming down the aisle together. To me, it feels very true to their relationship.

Source: The Five-Year Engagement

A part of me loves the idea of coming down the aisle with PBear by my side, but I kind of love the idea of having PBear watch me come down the aisle towards him (I must admit, childhood dreams die hard). I really love Mrs. Doily’s solo walk to meet Mr. D halfway, which seem to be a great compromise. I love how you can just feel the emotions behind this gesture in their gorgeous pictures.

Walking down the aisle by myself is one of those decisions that I don’t even remember making, but rather it is something that has always felt so right to me. I would love for our parents to participate in other parts of the wedding/ceremony, but I’m just not sure that the walk is one place I’m willing to budge on.

Did you do an nontraditional walk? How did it work out? Does anyone else felt as strongly about walking in by yourself?


Mrs. Panda

Boston, MA
Wedding Date:
June 2013
Showered with Love, One Last Time.
Gallery of the Day


  1. panda Member
    Mrs. Panda 1359 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:44 am

    @Sammie0405 Congratulations on your impending marriage! I know it must have been a difficult decision to decide to walk alone. I guess the question is what you think your dad’s expectations are. If he has only recently come back into the picture, he might assume that you would be walking with your step-father. I do think that you might want to tell him ahead of time so he is not blindsided at the rehearsal. You should say something similar to what you’ve told me, “I’m happy that you’re going to be there. I just wanted to let you know that I will be walking down the aisle by myself and I’m excited that I’ll see your smiling face when I do.” It’s likely going to be an awkward conversation, but I hope he can be understanding of your decision. Best of luck!

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