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Gay Groom Speech

Groom Speech Advice;
For Guys Who Love Guys

Writing your groom speech needs a bit more thought than your straight counterpart. Namely, how do you avoid tedious repetition of the same classic anecdotes and necessary thank yous if your husband’s also giving a speech?

Of course, if you’re the only one delivering a speech then that has its own pressures. Entertaining a crowd, ticking off the ‘to dos’ and dropping a lovebomb on your partner – all without resorting to cliches or googled gags.

The Speechy team are TV scriptwriters by trade and our wedding speech advice has featured everywhere from The New York Times to The Times. And, as the authors of ‘The Modern Couple’s Guide to Wedding Speeches’ we have all the advice to deliver a great speech on the big day…

*Of course, if you want more than ‘advice’ check out our gay groom speech templatespeech edit service, or our bespoke speech writing service. Or, work with our new AI-powered team member –SpeechyAI!   

wedding speeches vow help speechy

Gay Wedding Speech Etiquette

The first rule of groom speech etiquette is – don’t get tied down with it. A lot of it’s outdated, dull, and completely unnecessary. Modern speech etiquette just comes down to common sense.

Many grooms make the mistake of thinking their speech needs to be formal, but it really doesn’t. There’s no need to address your friends and family as ‘Ladies and gentlemen’; a simple ‘Hello, everyone’ establishes a more conversational tone. 

Tailor your style to fit with the scene you’ve set. 

Have you invited a lot of older relatives who expect a certain level of decorum or just a dozen of your Pacha amigos who want jagerbombs on tap? 

Maybe you’ve splashed out on a stately manor or gone urban in London’s Gherkin (see Attitude’s alternative wedding guide if you’re interested in that one) – just make sure your words reflect the wedding you’ve created.

gay groom wedding speech

1- So, who's doing what?

The first thing to think about is how you and your groom are going to divide speech duty. It might just be one of you addressing your guests (though it seems like a missed opportunity) or you could both give a speech.

The other option is a joint speech (we LOVE em!), and you can find out more about joint speeches here.

If you’re both delivering speeches, you need to ensure you’re not doubling up on content. Sure, you’ll each want to thank both sets of parents but only one of you gets to tell the story where you accidentally got locked in that bar.

Eduardo Braniff, Editor-in-Chief at Men’s Vows points out,  ‘If two grooms are each giving a speech, they need to discuss them to make sure they’re not overlapping and each speech complements the other. Even better, get an outside editor, a trusted friend, to oversee the speeches for you!’ 

If you’re giving two separate speeches, think carefully about how you’re going to schedule them. One after the other, or (our preferred option), one before the meal, and one after. That way, each speech gets it’s chance to shine, and for you each to focus on the other’s speech (without being distracted thinking about your own).  

Gay groom speech

2 - What is the typical groom speech structure?

Looking at the old-school etiquette guides you might be thinking the bulk of your speech should be thanking people – but don’t let your speech become a tedious list of appreciation. The focus of your speech should actually be a once-in-a-lifetime tribute to your new husband! 

Speechy generally advise the following groom speech structure… 

  • Hello, welcome and get a laugh 
  • The rom-com section  – Anecdotes & stories that give an insight into your relationship, how it began and how it’s developed over the years. 
  • The thank yous 
  • Raise a toast to the dearly departed (if necessary) 
  • A romantic tribute to your husband
  • A toast to your husband & your future life together 
 
Unlike traditional wedding speech advice, we encourage speakers to hook in their audience with a few good stories from the get-go and get to the thank yous later in the speech (rather than starting with them).   It creates a more entertaining and surprising narrative if you start with cracking anecdote, as opposed to the standard thank yous. 

gay groom wedding vows

3 - Who does a groom thank?

The thank yous are, of course, important and can ensure a lifetime of love from the in-laws (or years of deep & brooding resentment). The groom traditionally thanks…

  • everyone for coming
  • his parents
  • the in-laws
  • his best man or woman & ushers/bridesmaids

Of course, there may be others you want to mention (children you share or step-children?) but resist the urge to read out half the guest list. Nothing kills off a speech quicker than a tedious thank you list.

DON’T… 

  • individually thank people who have travelled far
  • thank anyone you’ve paid. (Your venue and caterers would prefer a good online review, and even if your wedding planner has gone above and beyond, only pay a public thank you if you’re confident you’re going to be besties in ten years time).

The truth is, thanks yous can be boring if you’re not being personally thanked (that’s why Oscar winners only get 45 seconds to give their acceptance speech these days).

AI wedding speech generator

4 - How does a groom pay tribute to absent friends & the dearly departed?

No need to mention any of your friends or family who haven’t been able to make it (unless they’re watching online). 

When it comes to the ‘dearly departed’, this depends on how raw the emotions are. 

If it’s a parent or someone very close to you has recently died, we advise paying a meaningful tribute to them in the week leading up to the wedding. This is so the disappointment of them not being there on the big day, has already been acknowledged. Even if it’s just a casual dinner with family or a walk to one of their favourite spots, let the tears flow before you’re standing up delivering your speech in front of everyone. 

On the day, be careful not to turn your speech into a eulogy. Instead, pay a tribute to your loved one by putting a smile on everyone’s face. 

Could the guests join you in a toast to your father by drinking his favourite malt whisky? Or could you point out your buttonhole is a tribute to your gran’s favourite flowers?

Our advice is keep it short, sweet and script it towards the end of your speech. So many grooms make the mistake of starting their speech when a toast to the ‘dearly departed’ but that’s often hard to recover from. 

wedidng speech dearly departed

5 - Should the groom give gifts during the speech?

Sure, the mums love a nice bouquet of flowers but let’s not make a big deal about it. And, certainly don’t deliver them during your speech!

We recommend giving any gifts earlier in the day (it’s more intimate and meaningful). Or, simply say in the speech that you’ll be ‘personally handing the gifts out later’ . This ensures the gift-giving doesn’t disrupt the flow of your speech and the guests don’t get distracted. 

thank you gift wedding speech

6 - Who should the groom toast?

A groom should conclude his speech by asking the guests to join him in a toast to his husband and their future life together. 

Great gay groom toast examples… 

  • “To love that’s as enduring as my partner’s ability to never replace the toilet paper roll properly. May our marriage be filled with laughter, joy, and a lifetime supply of two-ply. Cheers!”

  • “Here’s to us, to love that’s stronger than my coffee addiction and more colorful than our wedding palette. May our days be as bright as my husband’s taste in fashion, and our nights as cozy as our shared Netflix queue. Cheers, my love!”

  • “As we embark on this journey together, let’s raise our glasses to love that’s unbreakable, like the bond between me and my hair gel. May our marriage be as smooth as my dance moves on the wedding floor. Cheers to love, laughter, and fabulous adventures!”

  • “To my amazing spouse, thank you for choosing me to be your forever. May our marriage be as epic as our first date, as sweet as our favorite dessert, and as full of surprises as my attempts at romantic gestures. Here’s to us, to love, and to many more happy years ahead. Cheers!”

  • “In the presence of our loved ones, let’s toast to the unique journey we’re about to embark on. May our love be as boundless as the dance floor at a Pride parade and as vibrant as a rainbow. Cheers to us, to love, and to writing our own happily ever after!”

Our SpeechyAI is great at crafting truly unique toasts for grooms to deliver on the special day! 

wedding toast

How to Write & Deliver a Gay Groom Speech

Seven simple steps to nailing it… 

It’s impossible to start your speech too early. We’d suggest, as a minimum, start putting pen to paper (or fingers to keypad) a couple of months in advance to give you enough time to write, edit, rehearse and feel confident sbout your speech. 

Do not wait for divine inspiration to hit before sitting down to start it. In our experience, divine inspiration rarely hits until you’ve properly started engaging your brain. 

Rather than thinking you have to sit down and write an articulate, witty and meaningful speech in one hit, give yourself a series of smaller min-speech challenges. For example, think about…  

  1. The people you want to thank 
  2. The stories you want to tell 
  3. How to pay tribute to your husband without resorting to cliches 

Then, when you come to writing your speech, you already have strong building blocks to work with and it feels like a less intimidating challenge. 

If you and your groom are both giving speeches, it makes sense to discuss how you will divvy up your stories and the thank yous in advance so you both know who’s doing what. 

gay groom wedding speech uk

Ditch the usual, old meaningless cliches and jump straight into getting a laugh. 

Here’s some inspiration on writing your own opening lines…

  • ‘Good evening, everyone! They say a good marriage is like a fine wine. It gets better with time, and sometimes, you need it to get through family gatherings.’

  • ‘Hello, fantastic people! Today, [spouse’s name] and I have officially upgraded our relationship status from ‘In a Relationship’ to ‘In a Forever-Deal-With-It’ situation.’

  • ‘Hello, world-changers! Today, [spouse’s name] and I embark on a journey filled with love, laughter, and a joint bank account. Pray for us.’

wedding speeches edit speech writing uk

Right, this is the important bit. Your speech should tell a story.

Neuroscientists have discovered that our brains light up when we hear stories. When people hear an engaging anecdote, they put themselves in your shoes and that process forms a deeper connection. Just like that.

A story doesn’t need to be long. It doesn’t need to be extraordinary. It just has to reveal something about you as a couple.

  • ‘When we start writing a speech, the first thing we both do is hunt out the best stories. Three or four ideally. We’ll literally just bash them out and whack them down on the blank page. Everything goes from there.’ Ed Amsden and Tom Coles, Speechy team
  • ‘When guests hear great stories, they feel less of a spectator at the wedding and more like they’re involved. As an Asian man, I go to loads of weddings and if you’re one of 500 guests, you might not know the couple very well. A good speech helps me connect with them.’ Shai Hussain, speechy team 
  • ‘As a guest, I want to know where the love is. I want to learn something about the couple, either individually or as a duo, and I want to be left rooting for their marriage. Speeches have the power to surprise and delight, and a great speech creates the roadmap of the couple’s relationship for the guests. It should help us understand where they’ve come from and how it relates to where they’re going.’ Eduardo Braniff

STORY DON’Ts

Don’t bother with…

  • The proposal story – This is only interesting if it went wrong in some way. Detailing the romantic way you, or your partner, popped the question is generally predictable (it’s meant to be romantic) or seen as an attempt to show off.
  • The stag – Sure, thank your teams for organizing them and feel free to allude to any bad behaviour but do not consider this an ‘anecdote’. Again, these events often involve drinking too much and someone embarrassing themselves.
  • Long or complicated stories – Generally (and there are exceptions), you need to be able to tell the story within about 100 words.

STORY DOs

Look for stories that…

  • Tell the audience something new about you, your partner or love (or at least offer a fresh look at one of your classic tales)
  • Provide insight into your relationship
  • Are funny or poignant and thought-provoking
  • Are easy to follow
  • Have a point. A good story needs a clear, central message that fits with the theme of the rest of the speech

gay groom speech opening lines

Science proves that listening to someone talk about falling in love can make people feel like they are literally falling in love themselves.

A great wedding speech can – should – have the same effect as a classic romcom; releasing the pleasure hormones, dopamine and oxytocin.

People relate to other people’s love stories instinctively and who doesn’t love a dancefloor crammed with dopamine-filled-dancers?

  • ‘Sure, think about when and where the love affair started but talk about why and how was the bond formed. My partner said he knew I was the man for him when he saw me talk to topiary!Eduardo Braniff
  • ‘To avoid clichés, don’t sit down and just think you’re going to type out some amazing poignant poetry. Instead watch your partner for a couple of days and take notes. What do you love about them?’ Anna Price Olsen, wedding influencer at Brides

 

ROMANCE DON’Ts – Do not…

  • Be generic – If your romantic lines could be substituted into a stranger’s wedding speech, well, you’re doing something wrong. Romance demands that you get personal.
  • Be smug – Being married for a few hours does not grant you the right to be a smug-married yet. Remember there’s likely to be single people out there so resist the urge to suggest finding a life-partner is the only reason for living. 
  • Use meaningless clichés and platitudes – Seriously, ‘soulmate’ is a waste of your word count. What about ‘partner-in-crime’ instead?
  • Overuse adjectives – Avoid using too many adjectives and prove, don’t tell. Use evidence to back up your claims.

 

ROMANCE DOs – Make sure you…

  1. Remember romance doesn’t need to be serious – You can deliver the sweetest lines with a smile on your face.
  2. Concentrate on what makes your partner unique – The most powerful way to be romantic is finding the qualities and quirks that make your partner truly unique. The truth is, nearly all the clients we work with think their other half is gorgeous, kind and generally amazing. That’s the way marriage works. To be genuinely romantic you have to hunt down the things that make your partner ‘them’. Are they a tech-fiend, a gym bunny, a library lover, or the world’s oldest Haribo addict? Rather than portraying them as some sort of idealistic love-god, relish who they actually are.

gay couple wedding speech

All speeches should be under ten minutes long. It seems obvious but we’ve seen several speeches (generally the best men) go well over half an hour, oblivious to the yawns or heckling.

There really is no minimum length. A speaker can say a lot in just a few sentences but that takes a lot of skill. 

Speechy generally  recommends a wordcount of between 750 and 1,300 words depending on how many speeches you’re planning on the day and who the speaker is.

As a basic guide, people can usually deliver about 150 words per minute, not allowing for pauses or laughter.

The first thing to think about is if and how you’ll use notes.

As Speechy’s Andrew Shanahan points out, ‘Delivering without notes is like ‘doing a wheelie’; pretty cool but, ultimately, unnecessary. It’s just showing off really.’

Notes are not a sign of weakness, it’s simply evidence that you’ve prepared. And why, if you’ve spent weeks perfecting your speech, would you just aim to deliver a sloppy version of it?!

So, how to present your notes; paper, cue cards or tech?

It comes down to personal preference but we recommend old school A4 paper.

Mobiles and iPads are increasingly being used and tech may be what you expect a modern couple to use but it can look overly casual and send out the wrong message.

How many of us get annoyed when our loved ones get lost looking at a screen? For many of us, feeling frustrated is an inherent reaction when someone looks at their phone in our company.

That’s why we recommend you print your speech on A4…

  • Make sure the bottom third of the page has no text. This means your eyeline doesn’t drop too low.
  • Ensure the page turn is at an appropriate point, after a story has concluded, where you’d expect laughter or if there’s a natural pause.
  • Use a symbol. Ampersands (&) work well as a reminder to add an ‘ad lib’ – i.e. a line that you’ve scripted but memorised so you deliver it ‘off script’. This is a great technique that ensures you seem spontaneously witty and more relaxed than you may feel.
  • Use page numbers. In case you drop the speech.
 

wedding speech notes

The thought of speaking to a crowd of people you care about can be more terrifying than presenting to a room of work colleagues. But why?

Well, it can feel a bit judge-y can’t it?

When we work with clients on their delivery, all of them confess to being nervous, but we encourage them to emphasis on the content, rather than your presentation of it. 

Imagine you’re reading a story to a group of pre-schoolers. Drop all your pretensions  and, instead, engross yourself in the story: the silly voices, the exaggerated facial expressions, the works.

Don’t think about yourself but how you can get the best possible reaction from your audience.

And remember, this isn’t a business presentation where you’ll be grilled on your PowerPoint statistics afterwards. Logically, you have nothing to worry about. So what if you fluff a line? Does it really matter if you lose your place?

Ultimately, there are no negative consequences to you messing this up. Your partner has already married you.

Read our blog on how to present with confidence for more ballsy tips & techniques. 

 

Best man wedding speech

How To Make Your Groom Speech Funny

Learning to be funny (or at least, funnier) is a useful life skill.

  • Humour lowers defences and makes your audience like you more (honestly, scientists far cleverer than us have proved it)
  • Humour has the same effect as learning something new does on the brain. It wakes up an audience and helps them remember the content of your speech.
  • Humour is a well-established ingratiation tactic. Laughter is a scientifically recognised social bonding juice.

Here’s how you can find your funny bone… 

Telling a bad joke is worse than no joke. Avoid… 

  • Googled gags –  even one Googled gag  will take the shine of any of the original lines you’ve crafted. People will assume you’ve stolen them all so stay away from any generic wedding humour.
  • Anything edgy – Think Chris Rock at the Oscars. It’s just not worth the risk. Some punchlines ain’t worth the punch.
  • Anything about exes – While you and your partner might find it funny, your in-laws might not think it’s appropriate.
  • A long lead up to a punchline – If it takes too long to get to the laugh, drop it. Jokes are funnier the punchier they are.
  • ‘In’ jokes – Do you really want people to feel like they’re not part of the party?
  • Any of the old wedding gags – ‘Without all of you here today, it wouldn’t have been the same… but it would have been cheaper.’ ‘Let me tell you that is not the first time today I have risen from a warm seat with a bit of paper in my hand.’ And so on . . . Basically, if the joke could be used in someone else’s wedding speech, it probably shouldn’t be in yours.

wedding speech laughter

Speechy’s favourite brand of comedy is based on observation. It’s also the easiest to master.

The adage ‘It’s funny because it’s true’ makes sense.  

Comedians have a skilled eye when it comes to noticing the strange things in life that we take for granted but it’s often just about taking the time to look.

Everyone in this world is weird in their very own way, so get a mirror and hold it up to your relationship. Question your behaviour, habits and unwritten rules. Look at the everyday frustrations and recurring issues.

Okay, not everyone’s partners put sweet chilli sauce on their toast for breakfast but everyone can appreciate having a partner with weird habits. More advice on our How To Be Funny Blog.

Wedding speech laughter

We spend about 200% of our working life exaggerating.

It’s an easy and effective to add humour to your speech. 

For example, if your partner is a bit messy, you could say…

  • “Today, I become [Groom’s Name]’s husband, and that means learning to embrace the chaos he brings into my life – one misplaced item at a time. It’s like living in a perpetual game of ‘Where’s Waldo?'”. 
  • “My new husband is so messy, he considers the term “organized chaos” a personal challenge rather than a concept.”
  • “My husband is so messy, when I walk in our living room, I often think I’ve stumbled upon a modern art installation titled “The Clutter Chronicles.”

short gay groom wedding speech

The callback is where you plant a story or a piece of info at the start of the speech, possibly as a throwaway line, and then reference it later on. 

Watch professional comedians on stage and you’ll see nearly all of them deploy the technique. It’s not only funny, it’s a technique that makes you look smart. Win-win. 

For example, share that story where you accidentally stapled your shoe to the floor when you renovated your first house together. Later, conclude your speech by saying ‘…I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you, even if I do have to staple your shoes to the floor to make sure you’re by my side forever more.’

The callback is basically establishing an inside joke that everyone is part of.

To make it work

  1. Plant something funny, and crucially, memorable in the first third of your speech.
  2. Then simple refer to it towards the end of your speech.

Voila. You’ve become a comedy pro.

wedding speeches best man video help

Check out our gay groom speech videos blog to see how other grooms are adding humour to their speeches. 

Or check out our Groom Speech Services to see how the Speechy team can help you! Everything from Gay Groom Speech Template to our Bespoke Speech Writing Service

groom toast wedding speech writer

Speech Do's

Start writing your speech

Obvious but honestly, ideas will keep popping into your head once you kick off.

Make the thanks yous meaningful

Don’t just talk about what people have contributed to the wedding, thank them for what they’ve contributed to your life

Keep the thank yous concise

No one deserves more attention than your husband. 50 words max to anyone else!

Practise your speech and film it on your phone

Watch it back, promise yourself you’ll do something about your gut and spot where your speech can be improved.

Use witty wedding quotes

Plagiarism ain’t cool but using quotes is a great way to super-charge your speech with romance or humour. Get inspired by our Gay Groom Quotes Guide.

Speech Don'ts

Don't thank the caterers or the venue

It’s unnecessary.

Don't resort to clichés

Yes you can thank your in-laws for ‘raising such a wonderful son’ but try to make it personal too. Thank your mother in law for the extra inch added to your waistline since you first sampled her Yorkshire puddings.

Don't ignore the feedback of friends

It’s always worth testing your speech out on a mate but this also means you have to listen to them. If someone doesn’t get a joke, don’t waste your time explaining it as you won’t be able to do that on the day.

Don't talk over laughter

You’ve worked hard for those laughs – don’t rush them. Always wait until your guests have settled down before continuing with your speech.

Gay Groom Speech- Let us help you!

Work with us and deliver a speech that will knock your groom’s socks off.

We offer a DELIGHT GUARANTEE on all our bespoke services so there’s no reason not to exploit us.

And, of course, in the world of Zoom, Whatsapp and Death Wish Coffee, we work with clients around the world.

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