With all the jolity that surrounds a wedding, most people take it for granted that beneath the yummy design touches, the carefully crafted favours, and the string quartet, almost certainly lie a few issues. The bride will probably have had one or two falling outs with her bridesmaids, families will squabble about invites, and the groom will have issues with the caterers.
However, there's one far more permanent relationship issue that regularly crops up, and that's the one between the father of the bride, and his future son in law. For whatever reason it might be - job, football team, accent of manners...the bride's father isn't guaranteed to like the guy his daughter is marrying, and that really doesn't matter apart from one very important moment: the father of the bride speech.
For the rest of your lives, you can avoid each other, but what do you say in a speech, when what you'd really like to say would probably result in a full scale riot? Well, unsurprisingly less is more in this situation, because the longer you try to talk about the groom, the more likely it is you're going to say something inflammatory. You've also got to remember that most people will be aware that there's no love lost, so the last thing you should do is wax lyrical about what a great human being he is. That tactic can cause an edgy discomfort that lingers long, and in the worst case scenario it could be seen as extreme sarcasm, which again should be avoided at all costs.
The best thing to do is touch lightly on the subject of the groom, say how happy your daughter is, and how excited she is about their future. That way you're projecting it from her point of view, and you're not loading yourself up with disingenuous sentiment. Whatever you do, don't avoid mentioning him altogether. I've had this request a few times, and it could easily end in disaster, because by clearly omitting one of the most important people of the day, you're throwing a spotlight on to them in a really stark way.
Keep it light, and don't use it as an opportunity to score points. This day is all about your daughter, and if you can show just how happy you are for her - even when you're not - it's something she will never forget...for all the right reasons.