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Father Of The Groom Speech

Father Of The Groom Speech

Increasingly father of the groom speeches are becoming more common -especially, of course, at same-sex wedding ceremonies. A father of the groom speech is similar to a father of the bride speech - just with a bit more good-natured teasing added in.  Follow Speechy's expert advice and create a speech you're proud to deliver. No clichés, Googled gags or boring bits.

(*Of course, if you’re looking for more than ‘advice’, check out all the different ways the Speechy team can help you write & deliver a great speech. Or check out our new AI-powered team member, SpeechyAI.)

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Why Is The Father Of The Groom Speech Special?

Traditionally, there’s not much for the groom to look forward to when it comes to the speeches. He has the pressure of delivering one but all he gets in return is comedic abuse from the best man.

But why should it just be the bride’s parents who get to sum up a lifetime of love and mark the wedding as one of life’s special moments? Whatever the gender of your child, their wedding is a big deal – for both of you. This deserves to be acknowledged, so make sure you relish the opportunity and give a great speech.

Father Of The Groom Etiquette

Relax. Just be polite and welcoming and you’ve ticked the etiquette box.

Up to you whether you want to address everyone as ‘ladies and gentlemen’ or open with something more casual and friendly. A simple ‘Hello, everyone’ will often work better.

Whether you’re speaking at the rehearsal dinner or the wedding itself, welcome everyone for coming but you don’t have to namecheck anyone specific – even guests who have travelled far. That’s the newlywed’s job so don’t steal his thunder.

Your job is simply to make everyone feel welcome and pay a tribute to your son and his spouse. There’s nothing more tedious than every speaker complimenting the bridesmaids.

Speaking about your son is, really, no different from talking about a daughter… However, one big difference is how to refer to your son’s partner. At heterosexual weddings, the father of the bride will often gently, or not so gently, rib the groom in their speech. DON’T do this about the bride, unless you know them really well and are sure it will come across as good-natured. Instead, save all the mocking energy for your son. He deserves it.

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How To Structure Your Speech

Here’s the idea…

  1. Welcome all the guests and get them laughing straight away
  2. Tell some funny anecdotes from your son’s childhood (ideally illustrating qualities that everyone will recognise in him today)
  3. Pay tribute to the man he is today. The good stuff, the lovely stuff, but most importantly, the funny stuff
  4. Recount meeting your son’s partner for the first time and how you’ve grown to love them (and possibly their family too)
  5. You may want to offer some funny or heart-warming advice to the married couple. Nothing too profound or pompous.
  6. Conclude your speech with a toast to the married couple – traditionally it was to their ‘health and happiness’ but that’s no longer a requirement. Instead, try to make your toast more meaningful to the couple.
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Father of the Groom Speech Length

It depends on how many others will be speaking and if it will be in quick succession of each other. No one wants to sit through more than an hour of speeches!

We generally recommend speeches are between five and ten minutes long, including pauses for laughter. Usually, we aim for about eight minutes or between 900-1,100 words.

We find that’s long enough to provide a meaningful tribute and make people laugh, and not run the risk of anyone getting bored. No one ever listened to a speech and wished it were longer.

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Father of the Groom DON’Ts

DON’T…

  • Resort to any generic lines – Resist the cliches and make sure every single line of your speech is unique
  • Show off – Even if it’s not about you, don’t be tempted to show off about your son’s achievements too much. Sure, acknowledge his successes and why you’re so proud of him but don’t be tempted to regale everyone with his CV
  • Mention any exes – Never appropriate, no matter how amusing
  • Google gags – It’s tempting to hunt for ice-breakers and lines that will guarantee a laugh, but DON’T. Googled gags and cheesy wedding jokes are just as likely to elicit a groan as they will a laugh. Instead, hunt your own brand of humour, and, don’t worry, that’s not as hard as it sounds. Read our guide on how to find your funny lines.
  • Forget your son’s mother – Even if you have a difficult relationship, your son will appreciate it if you acknowledge the part she’s played in his upbringing.
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Delivery

  • Take note – The first thing to think about is if and how you’ll use notes. As the Speechy writers point out, ‘Delivering without notes is like ‘doing a wheelie’; pretty cool but, ultimately, unnecessary. It’s just showing off really.’ Having notes just shows you’ve prepared.
  • Memorise – Having notes on the day doesn’t mean you don’t need to rehearse and try to memorise your speech. You want to get to the point where you only need to glance and refer to your notes, rather than read them.
  • Resist the tech – Admittedly more and more speakers are choosing to use tech to read from but we still prefer old-school paper. We’ve been programmed to resent people on looking at their phones; it suggests they’re not really present or ‘in the room’. There’s also a higher chance of you scrolling too far or accidentally losing where you are.
  • Aim for a conversational tone – Not too fast (makes you sound nervous), not too slow (makes you sound robotic, pompous, and just a bit dull). Record yourself on your phone and listen back.
  • Look like you’re enjoying it – A smile is literally infectious and makes your audience feel like they’re in safe hands!

The Speechwriting Experts

The Speechy team are TV-trained scriptwriters/comedians by trade & we’ve helped 1,000s of speakers around the world deliver their dream speech.

Our advice has been quoted everywhere from The New York Times to Grazia and from Forbes to The Observer. Our founder has also featured on the BBC Sounds’ Best Men podcast with Jason Manford and written ‘The Modern Couple’s Guide to Wedding Speeches’, published by Little, Brown.

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''I had an unbelievable experience working with Speechy. From the moment I got in touch with them I felt supported and come the day of my best mans speech, it went down a storm with a standing ovation.''
''Speechy deserves more than 5 stars. (They) produced a factual, funny Mother of the Bride speech with just the right amount of emotion..... it was ingenious. Thank you so much for the wonderful & priceless memory of having delivered my speech at my daughter’s wedding and nailed it ... and got a standing ovation too. My children were very proud of me, including my new son-in-law! ''
''These Guys are tremendous! One main point is that its not their speech - its yours! This is because it is based totally around what you would like to say, but its the spin that Speechy puts on it, that is the magical bit... Ordinary words become a hilariously entertaining event. There were giggles, applauds, laughs, tears, cheers and standing ovation – all in that order!''
''Feeling anxious or stressed about an upcoming speech? Look no further than Speechy... I just delivered my Best Man speech this past weekend and absolutely crushed it. I was nervous leading up to the moment, but while delivering my speech, I didn't want the experience to end, the room was hooked, and laughing at every joke. Worth every penny... Thank you!''
''Navigating through the wedding industry often feels like you’re stuck on a conveyer belt....Speechy is the complete opposite. They treat you and your wedding like you’re the one and only. I couldn’t recommend them more.''
''Heidi and the whole team at Speechy are an absolute gem! In addition to their talent and extensive experience in speech writing, Heidi had an impressive way of listening to me talk about mine and my partners personal anecdotes, before putting it in such a funny and beautiful way that it felt as though she’d known us for years.''
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