Post # 1
So, my parents are divorced, but have stayed on fairly good terms. They were actually friends and had coffee together until my Dad got married 5 years ago.
My brother got married 3 years ago, and he refused to be in a photo with my Mom when it was just the 4 of them (Mom, Dad, Brother& bride), but he was fine when it was a big group along with his new wife.
He told me and my brother that being in a picture with my Mom wasn’t a reflection or relevent to the current family situation, but no matter who is in a relationship who with who, our parents will always be our parents. My Dad didn’t remarry until we were adults and have never lived with or had a motherly relationship with his new wife (but we do all get along). I tried telling him that it is nothing against his current wife, it’s just that it’s important to us that my brother got a picture with his 2 parents. I told him he doesn’t have to stand next to my Mom, he can even be on the opposite side of the photo if he wants in the order of Dad-Groom-Bride-Mom, but he still refused.
Anyways, apparently he felt bad after the wedding and was in tears and appologized to my brother about everything.
Now, my FH and I are planning a wedding next summer, and we want to bring up the topic of photos with him, but I’m not sure what his reaction will be. Did he appologize to my brother because he realized he made a mistake and will get in a photo with my Mom for my wedding? Or will he refuse again? If he refuses what should I do?
Do you think I’m in the right by wanting to have my parents in a photo together?
PS. my Dad’s wife will still be included in MANY photos during the wedding, but we just want to have even just one photo with just my parents. So, it’s not like we’re not including her.
Post # 3
I’d give him the option. It sounds like he regrets the last time. It may actually give him a chance to feel like he’s making amends. I’m betting he doesn’t want to hurt his wife’s feelings.
Post # 4
If he refuses, just roll with it.
My parents didn’t do photos together at my wedding. It didn’t matter. I have two photos displayed. It’s worth it to not raise a fuss – just do two 4×6 or 5×7 photos in a cute frame and be done with it! 🙂
Post # 5
@memo: Use the following phrase on anyone who bitches about this request:
“Suck it up, princess.”
Post # 6
When you get to the point of actually putting a shot list and day-of schedule together, have a conversation with your dad about how the whole day is going to run. In the course of talking about when the pictures are going to happen, ask him. “OK, we’re going to do a big family one, and then you and your wife, and then how would you feel about doing one with Mom?”
Keep your tone very neutral, and (IMO) go with whatever he and your mom are comfortable with. If he isn’t comfortable with it, you’re going to create a lot of tension by pushing, and if you successfully push and he doesn’t want to, you’re going to think of the awkwardness when you look at that picture, rather than whatever else you want that photo to symbolize.
It seems that you’ll be sad if you can’t get a formal shot of them together, but you will also be sad if you are revisiting in depth all this emotional terrain of your parents’ divorce right before and/or during YOUR wedding. I mean, I guess it’s also kind of natural for you to do so, too (big life events bringing up thoughts of the past andf future, specifically related to marriage), but if this is pertinent, you want to process those feelings up front, rather than channeling that stuff into the question of who is in what photo.
I’m hoping, of course, that your dad can be cool with it this time around and just take the 15-sec photo because it’ll make you happy. But if he’s not there yet, I would reconcile yourself to separate photos.
Post # 7
@memo: I actually agree with your dad. Taking a big happy family photo with you in the middle isn’t an accurate representation of that your family is now, and it doesn’t sound like it has been for quite awhile. You’re entitled to your thoughts and feelings of course I just tend to agree with him more. My parents have been divorced for more than half my life, so to me I have multiple families. I have a family with my mom and brother, I have one with my dad and step family. I now eat to have one with my in laws. Obviously forcing a family photo is going to cause issues. Think about what your family really is And commemorate your day in a way that truly represents you and your husband and everyone that loves you.
Post # 8
@MsJ2theZ: I get that you see it from my Dad’s side, and I kind of see where he gets his opinion from. My parents divorced when I was 12, but they still lived together until I was 18 because he didn’t want to be a part-time dad, so my entire childhood was with both parents equally.
The photo doesn’t have to make a fake display that we’re all a happy family together, but I think that once you have a child with someone, they will always be part of your family whether you like it or not. It’s not like I want them to hold hands or act like a couple. The fact is that they are the 2 people in this world who raised me and made me become the person I am today, that’s basically what the photo represents.
Also, his wife’s daughter got married a few years ago and asked me if I was okay with her having a father daughter dance with my Dad. I told her that it was fine with me, although I may not have really be happy about it. As a pp said, I always had a “Suck it up, princess.” attitude when it comes to people’s wedding. It’s one day when others can put their feelings aside to make the couple happy.