(Closed) How do you politely keep SO’s out of the family portraits?

posted 6 years ago in Family
Post # 3
526 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

I think it should be very easy, especially if you are willing to have them in some.  Do a few pictures with everyone, then have your photographer say “Ok, now JUST siblings!”  Your photographer will probably be trying to get all sorts of combinations of people, so it won’t be offensive.

Post # 4
1498 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2014

I think it will be easier than you expect but it wouldn’t hurt to just touch base with your photographer before hand. Chances are, a photographer has encountered this situation plenty of times!

Post # 5
1949 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

I don’t remember having a problem with this. I think we just said, Future In-Laws, Future Sister-In-Law 1 & 2, we’re going to take  pic with DH’s family now.

Your photog should be able to help mediate the situation. Make sure you let him/her know how you feel and what to anticipate if they just say “family”. make sure you tell them to get some of just blood relations/siblings

Post # 6
3220 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: February 2012

I don’t think it would be weird at all.  I’m not offended if Fiance takes a picture with his brothers, and we’re actually engaged. Wink

Post # 7
3720 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

I love my FMIL’s approach– family members come and go, so a portrait should reflect your family at that time. She makes sure all SOs get in the main pic, because you’ll never know if they work out. Then they do one of just the kids and one of just the grandkids.

Post # 8
2697 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I always thought it was super weird when I was invited into family photos before we were engaged. So I think most people (FBIL’s SO aside) will be expecting it and relieved!

Post # 9
5295 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 1993

Yeah our photog did a similar thing as some of the PP’s – kind of ‘built’ the family. First Darling Husband with his dad, then just his mom, then both parents, then added siblings, then added me and his brother’s wife. Darling Husband is the first  in-law for my family, so we didn’t really have to think about it for my side.

Post # 9
2693 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2008

Yeah I agree with PPs who say it’s probably easier than you’re worrying about.  Even during regular family events w/ my dad’s side of the family, my grandmother has no problem saying “ok, just my kids now!” and all of the spouses step out of the photo.  If these people are anything like MOST people are….they’ll probably welcome an instruction to step out of photos.  Just make sure someone announces when photos start that should just include siblings/immediate familiy and no SOs.

Post # 10
2204 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

We had this problem too. My mom spread the word to family members before the wedding that we would be doing a few quick family pics after the ceremony and that we just wanted family only. We told our photographer that we wanted family pics and on the actual day, it wasn’t an issue.

DH’s sister dated a guy for awhile and Mother-In-Law always insisted he was in family pics. They broke up and now he’s in every family picture. The same has happened in my family, you can always spot the ex’s in family pics. I hate it personally. 

Do you think the SO would handle it gracefully or would they make a scene?

Post # 11
1340 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

Drop a note to your photog ahead of time or have a trusted friend remind him, so it’s the photog running it, not you or Fiance. If it would be taken as offensive, it wil seem less offensive coming from photog. Or as a PP suggested, do the big shots with the sib’s partners first and then switch up the people.

Post # 12
1013 posts
Bumble bee

While my SO and i had only been dating 10 months when his sister got married, it was clear we were very serious.  I was not in any family photos during their wedding.  It kind of makes me sad now that we are looking to become engaged that we dont have any pictures with his sister from her wedding. 

I would say include the SO’s for some pictures, and only have immediate family for others. 



Post # 13
6998 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2011

I honestly think you can just say its family only and people will understand. but i like carnival bride’s idea of having a photog give direction or a family member so you dont have to deal with the confrontation on your wedding day. I think its just fair that if you are not married into this family or blood relation then you shouldn’t be in them but that doesnt mean you cant take some pics here and there with those people.

I went to my SIL’s wedding a month after getting engaged, I was engaged to her brother and still was not in the family picture and I was completely ok with that. Later though my Mother-In-Law and Father-In-Law had that picture blown up and hung it in their house – kinda makes me sad now since I am a part of the family and the only one missing from that photograph but at the wedding it did not bother me at all, i was newly engaged and quite honestly didn’t feel comfortable yet stepping into their family moment.

Post # 14
2493 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

@Rush1986:  My Future Brother-In-Law got married after Fiance and I were living together and quite serious, but I wasn’t in any pics. I wasn’t offended or upset at all. Looking back at pictures from the day, I don’t feel I was “missing” or that I should have stood up.

I think it is more than okay to get your photographer to “build” the pictures like a PP mentioned, leaving out SO’s.

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