A letter from the bride and groom to each parent expressing gratitude and affirmation for how they lived out their role as mother or father.
Hopefully, the parents are thrilled about their child’s happiness, but there is inevitably a sense of loss, too. The parent-child relationship will never be quite the same. It’s time for the child to “leave and cleave.”
What a treasure for a mother to have a note from her son, affirming who she has been as a mother. As happy as she is about her son’s marriage, she might feel a twinge of sadness that she’s no longer the most important woman in her son’s life. Knowing that her son values her character and her countless sacrifices is a priceless gift.
A letter from a mother or father to their child as a written blessing. Perhaps you’ve never expressed affirmation to your child in writing. It’s the perfect time. As your son or daughter now becomes a husband or wife, tell them what it’s meant to you to have been entrusted with the role of being their parent. Share the character qualities about your child that you think are so special, and how those qualities will serve them well as a husband or wife. Tell them your prayers for their marriage. Offer your best piece of marriage advice.
Perhaps your child won’t give you immediate feedback that the letter was meaningful. (After all, they’re about to get married.) But having your letter as they make this most important commitment will provide a touchstone they can refer to in the years to come.
A letter from a mother to her future daughter-in-law. At a Leave Nothing Unsaid writing workshop, one mother wrote a beautiful letter to her future daughter-in-law. And she decided to read it aloud at the upcoming rehearsal dinner.
Her daughter-in-law later reflected on the wonderful impact of that letter:
“It was the most special surprise when Vicki told me she had written me a letter and was going to read it at our rehearsal dinner. Usually parents put a lot of focus on their own child in the midst of wedding planning and getting ready for that big moment, but Vicki chose to take time to focus on me. The letter she wrote me was beautiful and is something I will treasure forever. She gave me the best gift anyone could give and that was love and faith in me as a wife to her son. She gave me encouragement in Stephen and my life together and the reminder to put God first. I felt so loved while listening to her read the letter to me and it made our relationship stronger.”
Writing loving and affirming words comes easier for some than others. If you need help, please get a copy of Leave Nothing Unsaid. The workbook provides a step-by-step guide for writing a meaningful letter. As another mother shared: “I referred to your book and it helped me in structuring the letter and finding words that describe my future daughter-in-law’s wonderful qualities.”
Words that will matter forever. That’s what these letters will provide.
If there’s a wedding in your future, please…leave nothing unsaid.
This post was initially published in March, 2017. And over the last two years, I’ve become even more convinced of the importance and impact of letters at this beautiful time!
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