Can Your Father Be Your Best Man (Etiquette & Is It Unusual)?

One of the most difficult parts of planning a wedding, aside from the huge logistical concerns and familial dramas, can be picking out a wedding party.

This is difficult for a myriad of reasons, from a lack of suitable candidates, to not wanting to upset or snub anyone to being unsure who would be comfortable with the various responsibilities and duties different members of the wedding party have.

While the bride can at least have multiple bridesmaids and this can take some of the burdens off upsetting people, the groom only gets to choose one best man, and making this choice can be incredibly difficult.

This can be difficult for a few reasons, the most obvious being that the groom doesn’t have any close friends for whom the best man’s responsibilities would be appropriate or fair.

The best man ideally should be incredibly comfortable with the bride and groom and know them both well enough to help anticipate their needs and to be willing to help out with the wedding in any way possible.

This type of responsibility can’t just be given away to new friends or someone who you barely know.

Another issue could be that the groom has too many close friends, and picking one of them to be the best man could cause upset and jealousy that may undermine friendships.

While this is a more rare problem and no real friend should let their ego affect someone’s wedding plans, it’s a sad fact that human beings are simple creatures, and not being chosen for the best man role could drive a wedge between long-time friends of family members.

Regardless of the reason, there’s one choice that people often overlook, and this is choosing the father of the groom to be the best man!

After all, the best man needs to know the bride and groom well, be responsible, well organized, and ideally be able to deliver a speech that will suitably embarrass the groom and gratify the bride without being too inappropriate!

While it may seem like an unorthodox choice, the father of the groom will almost always have everything required to fit this role perfectly and could be an excellent choice of best man.

Who do most people choose as their best man?

Typically, it’s common for a best friend or close relative to be chosen, and the most common choice among relatives is a brother, due to the incredibly close bonds most brothers share.

Generally, a close friend is chosen if a brother isn’t available, and regardless of who it is, the best man is considered a position of honor and importance for a wedding and it is a sign that the groom trusts and believes in whoever they choose, and wants them to play an integral role in one of the most important occasions of their life.

Choosing your father could be a great choice to get around the pressures of making this decision, or if you’re just someone who is incredibly close to their father and wants to show them how much they mean to you.

But regardless of who you choose there will be a lot of responsibilities for them to attend to, which we’ll take a look at below.

What are the responsibilities of a best man?

While this can vary significantly depending on the particular wedding and the plans that are in place, however, there is generally a core set of responsibilities and roles the best man needs to play in most weddings.

  1. Organize and plan the bachelor party for the groom and the rest of the groomsmen
  2. Organize gifts for the groom
  3. Organize the groomsmen and ushers suits and help make sure they are aware of their own responsibilities on the day of the wedding
  4. Look after the rings (One of the most important responsibilities of all!)
  5. Help the wedding day itself run smoothly, anticipating the needs of the wedding party, the bride and groom, and the guests.
  6. Organize the guests and orient them to their seats as well as keep the ushers organized.
  7. Give the best man’s speech at the wedding reception.
  8. Welcome the guests to the wedding

As you can see there is a lot for a best man to do, and almost all of them can be done by the groom’s father, however, the bachelor party may not be as wild or debauched as if it was organized by a friend, however, this could be a good thing!

Should you choose your old man as your best man?

Ultimately the choice of who to pick as your best man is one that only you can make, and although it may be difficult, you should trust your gut.

While some may see choosing your father as a strange choice, there are many valid reasons for making a decision like this, and anyone who respects you will respect your decision and try to understand the reasoning behind it.

There are alternatives if you don’t have a father figure, and it would be fine to choose a grandfather (although this would be very uncommon) as well as a brother or even your son if he’s old enough.

Ultimately no one can tell you what the right choice will be for you and it’s something that requires a lot of reflection on your own life and the relationships you’d like to honor within it.

Regardless of who you choose however, make sure to brace yourself for the best man’s speech, as whoever you choose (particularly if it’s a close family member) will undoubtedly have some toe curling tales to embarrass you with during the best man’s speech!