Future sister-in-law not included in family photos?

posted 2 months ago in Etiquette
  • poll: Should future in-laws be included in family pictures?
    Yes!! They're family! : (43 votes)
    77 %
    Absolutely not- immediate family only : (13 votes)
    23 %
  • Post # 16
    Member
    1422 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: June 2018

    I think your fiancé should speak with his brother about this. It may help settle some confusion.

    For what it’s worth, I was included in family photos at my now-husband’s cousin’s wedding when we were still only dating. I was surprised they wanted me in the photos then, but thought it was really sweet and inclusive. And I wasn’t in ALL of the photos, so they would hardly have been ruined if we had ended up breaking up.

    Post # 17
    Member
    229 posts
    Helper bee

    OP, I agree with you 100%-  I think it’s really shitty.  When DHs brother got married, I was included in family pictures-  and this was even several years prior to my engagement, no less wedding to Darling Husband.  Like you, we were together longer than Brother-In-Law and SIL and I was considered family. When I was married, my sisters bf was included in family pictures.  My photographer simply took some immediate family shots, then had the bf jump in the same pose and got some shots with him included.  This was actually a good compromise, as my sister and her bf split about a year and a half after my wedding.  Regardless, I considered him family and in no situation would he not be included in our family photos.  

     

    Post # 18
    Member
    2465 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: NJ

    I have heard of families excluding in-laws who are married into the family. They don’t want to have to say in future years:

    “That is Doreen, Buster’s ex-wife. And Sharla, she was married to Homer. They’re divorced too.”

    Post # 19
    Member
    13 posts
    Newbee

    You are missing a handful of photos. How’s many pictures include the wife/fiancé of the groom’s brother? Not many. This isn’t your call to make. Marriage may just be the easiest place to draw the line. Don’t stress about it. How often would you look at your fiance’s brothers wedding photos anyway? 

    And your survey is missing a rational third option. That either way is ok, just up to the bride. There isn’t a hard and fast rule that etiquette dictates. 

    Post # 20
    Member
    9388 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: August 2016

    I totally forgot to include my brother’s fiancé (now wife) in the formal pictures at our wedding. No one has ever mentioned being upset by it and I didn’t mean it as a personal slight against her. 

    I wouldn’t take this personally. It only holds as much meaning as you give it. If you have an otherwise solid relationship with his family then I would just let this go.

    Post # 21
    Member
    2411 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: October 2016

    Good thing you’re getting married soon & will have your own pictures that include everyone! 

    Post # 22
    Member
    3090 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: January 2021

    I don’t understand some of the responses here. 

    I would feel hurt and taken aback by this as well. I certainly would not expect to be in every single family photo, but to be exlcuded entirely would not feel very nice at all. Even if they are only doing a few photos and prefer to have only the “blood” family in them, it still seems odd to tell you that you can’t even come with your fiance to spend that bit of family time before all the hecticness begins. 

    I don’t know about other families, but mine has always included spouses and partners who are reasonably considered life partners in at least a couple of photos at weddings or when we do family photos. One of my brothers happens to have an ex fiance so we are certainly glad that she wasn’t in EVERY photo we have from the round of family photos we did when she was around, but she was included in several and that’s ok! At that point we did consider her family.

    Post # 23
    Member
    719 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2019

    newlyengaged19 :  Umm what I’m sorry but I have to go against the grain here. A lot of bees are responding saying how long they been dating isn’t relevant and it doesn’t make her family and whatnot. I disagree if a couple has been dating lets say 7+ years or a long time and got engaged and been around the family a ton that says something as opposed to a couple who has been dating 2 years and is married. Neither of those scenarios are better than the other but the point is they may not be officially married yet but if she has been around the family a lot longer than the SIL and the family knows her better chances are the family sees her as just as much as family. A couple doesn’t always have to be married to be family. My cousin has been with his gf for ten years they aren’t even engaged but she is at all the family functions we see her regularly and I would seriously look at one of my family members sideways if they said well they aren’t married so she isn’t family. We all consider her family and she is included in all the girl days and whatnot with my family. This isn’t the fiances brother saying he just wants it parents and blood siblings in one photo and OP is getting bent out of shape. This is a new in law who has been around not near as long as OP who probably doesn’t have that background with the family near as much as OP does saying she isn’t family while ironically she is freaking engaged and weddings are about bringing families together but yet you are leaving someone’s fiance out of all the pictures. That’s bullshit. I just find it hard to believe that everyone on here would be as cool as they are acting like they would be if a newcomer into a family said nope you’re not family you’re not in wedding pictures if say you been with fiance 10 years and they knew the family for one year.

    So lets say a couple is together and engaged and they been together many many years and a sibling of one of the people in the relationship got married after 1 year and the siblings SPOUSE decided that well she isn’t married into the family so she shouldn’t be in the photos even though she has been to every family function for many years, goes to Sunday dinner every week, has been an established part of the family for many years and knows the family a whole lot better than she does. Yeah if I was in that scenario i would be very upset.

    As a side note I would talk to your fiance about politely standing up for you. This is really his battle because it’s his family and his cavalier attitude about his fiance being excluded would bother me

    Post # 24
    Member
    6074 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: February 1997

    I agree that there ought to be a rational third option in the polls. It is clear from the poll wording that you are villifying them, regardless of what their reasons were. Married is the easiest place to draw the line, IMO. And there may be reasons for her feeling that way that have nothing to do with you (Uncle John who swears he’s marrying every woman he dates for more than a week, her brother who has been dating someone on and off for ten years in an unhealthy relationship, her sister who has two baby daddies but has never been married, etc.) or it may simply have been an oversight on her part. A lot of people do things and never think twice about them. I’m not advocating for that, just saying that perhaps when the photographer mentioned “family pictures” she took it literally.

    Post # 25
    Member
    719 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2019

    anonymousbee001 :  you’re sounding a lot more judgmental than OP by saying she isn’t family. You don’t know how close OP is to her fiance’s family and how involved she is with them and if her fiance’s siblings and parents consider her family so sorry but it really isn’t up to you to make that call about whether or not someone that you don’t even know is a member of someone else’s family. I guessed I missed the part where you were there when OP’s future in laws decided she is an established member of the family. As we have seen time and time again on these boards family doesn’t always mean just literal blood relations or married in family is what you make it. We see cases on here where friends are more family than the actual family they were born into. Would you say to someone who comes on here saying that they are an established member of their best friend’s family that they aren’t? So why is this any different. I think OP knows how her relationship with her fiance’s family works better than you do.

     

    It’s also wrong for a newcomer who also isn’t blood to someone else’s family to come in after OP has already been an established member of the family and say well you’re not family when she literally hasn’t even been around to know the in and outs of her relationship with her new hsuband’s family. It’s not like they been dating a year they been together 8 years and they are engaged. I don’t think its that entitled to expect to be in at least one photo when you have been together that long and you are engaged. She never said she expects to be in every photo.

    Post # 26
    Member
    719 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2019

    echomomm :  clearly there is a difference between Uncle John who dates a new women every Sunday and a couple that is engaged and has been an established couple for 8 years and any sane person who honestly can’t see the difference between the 2 has more issues than rudely excluding a fiance of many years from every single photo. 😏

    Post # 26
    Member
    719 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2019

    DeniseSecunda :  thank you! You said what i was trying to say a lot better than I was. I mean i have literally read hundreds of posts on here that say people have friends that they consider family or they chose a best friend over a sister as Maid/Matron of Honor because they consider their bff more family than their sister and everyone is understanding of that but here it seems to be very black and white. I’m even in shock over a few of the bees on here that are saying OP is being judgmental but then boldly in the same breathe make the determination for her that she is in fact NOT a member of the family. Im disappointed because generally the bee is a pretty forward thinking not black and white and accepting of all situations but for some reason there is some backwards thinking and very literally thinking. Oops too bad you aren’t literallt blood or married in not family.

    Post # 27
    Member
    14885 posts
    Honey Beekeeper
    • Wedding: June 2011

    Some people view “family” as blood.  If she’s dictating who’s in the photos, that’s really another level of separation imo.  I dont call my husbands sisters husband my brother in law – I call him my sister in laws husband.  Honestly if I’m not close to them an actually have a relationship with him, I don’t consider him “family” like I would my husbands silbings.  When we did our wedding photos we did some with immediate family only and some with husbands.. cause lets face it, even husbands are permanant, but blood is.  (granted I know to some blood doesnt mean anything cause their blood fam may be awful, but that wasn’t the case here so not somethign i had to consider)

    Post # 28
    Member
    750 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: City, State

    Op, you aren’t being excluded. The marrying couple is just not including you in a particular shot list. You’ll still be in professional photos from the wedding. 

    Post # 29
    Member
    719 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2019

    pinkshoes :  Wait maybe its different from region to region but here in the states legally if you’re married and your spouse’s sibling is married they are your bro/sis in law. Whether or not you say they are or aren’t doesn’t legally change the fact that they are. Are you really suggesting that even blood family should be more important than someone’s own spouse?? Once you marry they are to come before all else.

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