The Role of the Mother of the Groom

Are You Really Just Supposed to Show Up, Shut Up, and Wear Beige?

mother of the groom

Your little boy is all grown up and is getting married. Now you're not just Mom, you're the Mother of the Groom. There's a traditional saying about what the mother of the groom is supposed to do – Show Up, Shut Up and Wear Beige. But is that still true in this day and age? Here's a guide to the duties of the mother of the groom.

The Role of the Mother of the Groom

While customs vary from region to region and even from family to family, these are generally the things expected of the mother of the groom (and often the father of the groom as well):

  • Plan and host the rehearsal dinner
  • Pay for the items below and offer any other financial assistance that you can reasonably offer without overtaxing yourself
  • Draw up the guest list for the groom's side, after finding out how many guests you are allowed to invite
  • Call any of your guests who are late in RSVPing
  • Attend the bridal shower and bring a gift
  • Help the father of the groom make a toast at the rehearsal dinner
  • If there's a mother/son dance, help choose a song for it, and dance with your son at the wedding

Optional Responsibilities of the Mother of the Groom:

  • Offer to help research wedding vendors, sites, and resources
  • Introduce yourself to the bride's family, and help introduce the rest of the families to each other.
  • Help your son with any family traditions
  • Offer to help with such things as craft projects, making welcome bags for the guests, and arranging seating charts. These more time intensive projects can often use an extra pair of hands, as long as they are supportive and nonjudgmental.
  • Help spread the word about where the couple is registered

What the Groom's Parents Traditionally Pay For

They may also help the groom with details he is responsible for, such as:

  • The honeymoon
  • The bride's engagement ring and wedding ring
  • The bride's bouquet, and boutonnieres for the mothers and grandmothers
  • The marriage license and fee for the officiant

What Happens If You Don't Like the Music/Food/Décor/Apparel at Your Son's Wedding

While mothers of the groom don't really need to wear beige anymore, they still need to shut up. This may be hard to hear, but it's true. You may have some helpful advice to share, but make sure you stop giving it before it becomes intrusive or nagging.

Like it or not, this isn't your wedding to plan and your relationship with your son and your future daughter-in-law is far more important than what color the napkins are. The last thing you want is for the bride to feel squished between what her mother wants and what you want!