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Taking the Mystery Out of Same-Sex Weddings

Gloria Kreitzberg // Marketing Director

For heterosexuals that have never attended a same-sex wedding, you may be wondering what the ceremony and reception might be like. What traditions are followed? Who wears the wedding dress and who wears the suit? Is there a wedding shower? With two brides, who walks down the aisle as the bride and who waits at the altar? First of all, none of those details truly matter in the larger scheme of things. The most important fact remains…two human beings are ready to give their total dedication and love to each other. They are announcing their commitment to each other in front of the world and to the Universe. It’s all good. Having said that, this article has been written to clear up any misconceptions you may have and give you an idea of what to expect, should you be invited to one of these fabulous celebrations of love.


Who Wears What?

There’s not much breaking from tradition with ‘what to wear’ when it comes to a heterosexual bride and groom wedding. With same-sex couples, the gender role rule-of-thumb doesn’t apply. You may be thinking that the ‘bride’ in a gay male relationship wears a wedding gown (going in drag) and the ‘groom’ in a lesbian relationship wears a suit. This is not necessarily the case. Only 4 percent of gay male couples and 36 percent of lesbian couples have one partner in a suit and the other in a dress, according to a gay wedding planner survey where 900 same-sex couples were polled. It’s an individual preference for each of the couples. As in a traditional wedding, it’s whatever makes you feel comfortable.


The Ceremony

Gay and lesbian couples may skip the traditional wedding ceremony and create their own traditions. The need to pick a side of the room to sit in for the ceremony is going away and people are opting to have guests sit wherever they like. Other ‘iffy’ traditions that you may not see are ring bearers and flower girls. With lesbian couples, who walks the bride down the aisle? Well, sometimes there are two brides, sometimes none, and maybe neither feel like a bride at all. Many same-sex couples are choosing to walk down the aisle together. There may be no procession whatsoever. Nowadays, gay and lesbian couples create their own unique way of getting hitched. How refreshing!


The Reception

Many couples are not ‘feeling it’ when it comes to gender specific reception traditions. It can get confusing. What about the garter or bouquet toss? There may be 2 bouquets, 2 garters, or none of the above. Many same-sex couples are even skipping the father-daughter and mother-son dance. The fact is that couples have the freedom to do whatever they feel will make them happy. They are changing the rules to fit their preferences and that’s a good thing. It’s all about the celebration. If Aunt Gladys is disappointed that she’s not going to hear ‘Daddy’s Little Girl’, let her know that she can download it on iTunes.



Same-sex marriage is part of the new ‘norm’ and as a community we should all embrace whatever non-traditional wedding practices our friends and family choose—whether the couple is heterosexual, gay, lesbian, or trans-gender. The most important thing to wedding couples is that everyone is treated with respect. Your love and support are their most precious wedding gifts.

The wedding planners at Webster Golf Club can assist you in planning your wedding day. Their services are complimentary when you book your wedding and reception at Webster Golf Weddings & Events. Call us today at (585) 265-1920, ext. 3 to learn more.