The garter and bouquet toss have been a staple of the wedding tradition for years. The bride has all the single ladies line up and throws her bouquet back. The passionate singles rush to catch the bouquet. They hope it will bring them luck in catching a husband of their own. The groom on the other hand throws the garter that he retrieved from his wife’s thigh. The single men competitively fight to gain possession of the garter. They too pine for a bride of their own.
This is an old tradition. Many couples are opting to skip or replace the garter and bouquet toss. Some like to hold on to the tradition. It is undeniably an entertaining spectacle. Seeing a group of people clamor to catch an object is funny. Guests have come to expect the tosses when they attend a wedding. But couples are still deciding to forgo this specific tradition for many reasons.
The tradition, as you can tell from the first section, is not a very modern one. The idea of people being desperate to wed is not as common anymore. It hearkens back to the time of matchmaking and the nuclear family being the ideal. In the modern era, the pressure to wed is not as heavy. Many singles are happy with their station or have various situations they are happy with. It can come across as sexist. It enforces the mindset that women are fawning for husbands and that men are desperate for a wife. Now, that may be reading too much into this idea. It can definitely be interpreted as harmless fun. But at its core it still seems a little problematic.
Even if it does not come across as sexist, it is an awkward tradition. It singles out all the singles who may feel somewhat embarrassed to be up there. There is a pressure placed on single people to go up and catch the garter or bouquet. Sure, some single people are ecstatic to be participating. But many find the thought uncomfortable. Regardless, the clamoring to catch the item can end up being somewhat of a safety hazard. It can get people knocked into or hurt the feelings of someone jumping in the way.
After the items are caught, there is a school yard style “oo and aw” that comes from the two who caught each object. There is the prom king and queen mentality of now these two are together. It is weird. Often one or the other leans way too far into it. It makes the other person uncomfortable and in turn the whole situation feels messy. Plus for those who did not catch it there is this weird walk of shame if they wanted to catch it. The whole thing could go off without a hitch. But in general, it creates a volatile situation.
So Many Better Traditions
There are so many better wedding traditions. The same thing done over and over at a wedding makes the events seem played out. Many couples are replacing the garter and bouquet toss with their own ideas. Being creative can lead to innovative traditions that will leave guests talking. Even if it is not replaced, the guests are not hard pressed to not have done the tosses. Most guests won’t even notice if they are having fun with the rest of the wedding. Instead of breaking the action of the reception for a weird, old tradition, it may be time to try some new traditions.