How to Choose a Ring Bearer

by Claire Valenty on January 13, 2011

in Wedding Etiquette

wedding-ringbear-etiquette

Sometimes, choosing a ring bearer for your wedding is easy.  You only have one cute nephew?  Done.  Other times, it is a bit of a challenge as you try not to appear to pick a “favorite” amongst nephews, younger brothers, your friends’ kids, your cousins’ kids and the list goes on and on.  No matter who you decide on, someone is going to be miffed.

As weddings typically only have one ring bearer, you should use the following reasons to choose your ring bearer (and to help soothe over the hurt feelings of the parents whose child was not chosen):

  • Etiquette states you should choose a ring bearer who is between three to seven years of age.
  • Narrow your selection down even further to a child who is developed enough to handle the responsibility of being a ring bearer.  While it is cute to see a kid having to be carried down the aisle by their parent because they forgot what they were doing or where they were going, do you want that at your wedding?
  • Make sure the child you choose is not super shy.  It is one thing if they make it through the rehearsal ok; making it through the actual ceremony in a room filled with tons of people might prove to be too traumatic and overwhelming for them.
  • Make sure you get along with the ring bearer’s parents.   There are plenty of horror stories on the internet about mothers of the ring bearers trying to make it all about their child’s big moment instead of your wedding.
  • Traditionally, the ring bearer is a boy, but, this is not set in stone and a little girl may be used, instead.

If it all gets to be too much, or you cannot find anyone who is suitable, skip having a ring bearer entirely!  Most of the time in wedding forums, I just see parents of the ring bearer complaining about how much they have to spend on a tux rental.  Do them and yourself a favor: eliminate the drama completely and give the rings to the best man and maid of honor to hold.

Photo: 123rf/Todd Kuhns

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