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Your little girl is about to get hitched! Now it’s time for you to tell her just how proud you are. Writing a father of the bride speech can be tough, after all, you’ve probably got a lot to say and you’ve only got a few minutes to say it. If you’re having trouble penning your wedding speech, use these rules to guide you.

Here’s how to nail your father of the bride speech.

Introduce yourself

As with any good speech, yours should begin with a brief introduction. You don’t have to be super formal - remember, you’re speaking to friends and family, not giving a presentation at work – so feel free to crack some jokes. Your father of the bride speech is also the perfect place to throw in a few thank you’s to anyone who helped host the wedding.

Give a shout out to those who couldn’t be there

Some of your nearest and dearest may not have been able to make it to the wedding and you can use your time in the spotlight to give them a little tribute. Say something sweet and sentimental like “[insert name of loved one] would have been so proud to see you on your big day” - your daughter will definitely appreciate it.

Take a walk down memory lane

Chances are you have plenty of tales to tell about your daughter, from her first words to her embarrassing teenage antics, and you probably want to share them all. Keep in mind that while guests would love to hear a few stories, they probably don’t want a twenty-minute presentation on her life. We suggest selecting one or two stand out moments to talk about in your father of the bride speech, that’ll keep everyone engaged.

Say some nice things about your new in-law

You’re being blessed with a new son or daughter (well, son- or daughter-in-law), so you should say some nice things about them, too. If you want to go the anecdotal route, talk about the first time that you met or some of the fun times you’ve shared. Haven’t had the chance to bond just yet? Simply express how excited you are to get to know them and how pumped you are that they’re joining your family.

Pass down some wisdom

Sharing is caring! You’ve got years of experience on them, so give the lovebirds a little bit of advice for their future. You don’t even have to focus on marriage, you could speak about happiness or love in more general terms if you feel like that’s more appropriate. Remember, this part doesn’t have to be super serious, if you’re trying to inspire some laughs, feel free to get a bit goofy and add in a few dad jokes (the audience will love it, guaranteed).

Make a toast

After you’ve told a few stories and blessed the happy couple with your sage wisdom, it’s time to finish off your father of the bride speech. Express your love and congratulate them one last time, then invite the rest of the crowd to raise their glasses and join you in cheersing to the guests of honour.

Don’t hog the mic

You won’t be the only person giving a speech at the wedding, so don’t monopolize the microphone. Yes, you probably have a lot to say, but try to focus on keeping things short and sweet. Wedding speeches should be around the 2-5 minute mark, so do your best to not go beyond that.

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