There are simple—and incredibly important—ways you can support your son on one of the most defining days of his life.
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groom hugging his mother
Credit: Daniel Kim

The mother of the groom is a key player on the big day—and if you are about to step into those shoes, you should be prepared to put your mom skills to work behind the scenes when necessary. Whether your son asks for your help or you intuit that he needs you, you'll be there to get the job done. To be there for your son in the ways he may or may not ask for, heed the following advice.

Calm his nerves

When the groom has a case of wedding-day jitters, you should be at the ready with all forms of support; share comforting words or retell his favorite childhood anecdotes to make him laugh. Hugs or a shot of tequila, work too. The goal is to help him feel better—without the fuss.

Tell him you love him

If you find a few moments alone with your son on the big day, express how proud you are of him; how thrilled you are that he found someone special to share his life with; and how much you love him. Add some cheeky "mom" advice too—something along the lines of, "Be the first one to empty the dishwasher," works.

Stay positive

Whether you didn't love the ceremony readings or you found the air-conditioning at the venue to be lacking, it's important to keep these thoughts to yourself. Your son's wedding day isn't the time to criticize or insult. In these bumpy moments, staying silent—or, better yet, changing the subject by offering a positive remark—is the best policy.

Be friendly to his new family

His partner's people are his people now, too—so in a gesture of friendship, mingle enthusiastically and introduce yourself to these new relatives with care. Making a great first impression is something the groom will certainly appreciate.

Embrace your new role

You will always be his mother, but you have an additional job now: mother-in-law. In some ways, you take vows on your boy's wedding day too, including "I vow not to help support this marriage," and "I vow to love him or her like she's my own son or daughter."

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