Wedding woe: no first dance

This week's wedding woe is quite cute, and definitely something a few couples have different opinions on.

Hi Greer,

I love your blog, and it is so timely as I am getting married in November.

Our wedding is pretty well on track, but I have a wedding woe of my own.

My fiancé doesn't want to do a first dance. I am a little disappointed, but I completely understand and am not pushing the issue. My worry is that people won't get up to dance as they will be waiting for us to do a first dance. I'd love to hear suggestions from people about what we should do to get around this and get people up and having fun? 

Thanks so much!

November Bride


I get this. And I think there are a couple of options.

I'm assuming (and this is just an assumption) that your man doesn't want to dance with a bunch of people watching because he doesn't know how.

And that's fair enough in a sense. A wedding day can be daunting enough - what with having to deal with so many people, plans and emotions - let alone chucking in the added pressure of having to put one foot in front of the other with all eyes and cameras watching. Eep!

Here are a couple of options:

Get dance lessons: Seems obvious (and, actually, somewhat more daunting than the dance itself), but I've heard of a few non-dancers having some success at dance lessons. Some even - hark - enjoy it.

Discuss first dance options: A lot of guys (and some gals, but mainly guys) have concerns around weddings and the "traditional" things done at them that they don't understand. Why should they have to have a "first dance"? What significance does it have? Once they realise it is tradition for the guests of honour to kick off dancing, then it makes more sense to have a "first dance" - rather than just a random first dance for the sake of it. Then maybe grab him by the hand and sway like (I believe, in my opinion) all couples should from time to time. It's not choreographed but a gentle sway together as one. Now explain that that's all that is required!

Get your bridal party involved: Our friends who got married at the weekend (one of the coolest weddings I've been to, it was amazing!) asked that all of their bridal party take to the floor at a specific point (very early on!) in the song. They wanted this so that it encouraged more people to get up and also limited the amount of awkward swaying that the two-left-feet-but-we-love-him groom had to endure. It was great fun, provided that "awww" moment, and kicked off an awesome night of celebrations. Another idea could be to get your bridal party to kick things off - with or without you and your husband. 

Get creative: Maybe you could see if your groom was keen on doing a surprise dance, or at least an "unexpected" first dance? Maybe the chance to make others laugh might allow him to see things from a different angle?

Daddy's girl: If your groom really, really, REALLY doesn't want to dance, why not have a "first dance" with your Dad, grandfather, uncle or brother? That way your husband (Eee! Get used to that word!) can cut in or it will at least get the ball rolling for others.

Most important, I think you should find out why your fiancé is so against the first dance. He may have some good points that you hadn't thought of so you may be able to come to an arrangement or see things from his perspective.

What are your suggestions or help for November Bride?

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