Claire
Beginner October 2020

Masks and pictures?

Claire, on September 4, 2020 at 3:17 PM Posted in Wedding Reception 1 60
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Our venue is not requiring the guests to wear masks since it's a private event. We told our guests they can wear them if they want but it's not a requirement. FH's brother (and best man) is very upset by this and has threatened to not come to the wedding unless we mandate masks, and has also said that if he does come, he will not take his mask off, including pictures.


I don't really want to look back and remember this happening during my wedding, and seeing everyone (or even him) in masks, and my FH and i paid for the photographer. We're trying to decide if we ask him to either remove his masks for pictures, or just not have him in pictures at all.


Any input? Has this happened to anyone else? Did you all mandate masks for guests and how did that go over? Did anyone have masks in all of your pictures? i'm at such a loss and i'm so upset and disappointed but I feel like a brat for feeling that way.

60 Comments

Latest activity by megan, on November 11, 2020 at 12:28 PM
  • Melle
    Legend June 2019
    Melle ·
    • Flag

    My bff is having the wedding party wear masks but she's not going to mandate it to guests. she said that she will provide it and there would be signs but it's not something she will enforce. so she told her father in law that if people don't wear it it's fine. he said "i don't want to wear a mask". for the photos with everyone i think she wants some with masks and some without.

    honestly i don't think i'd want to make him not wear a mask if he isn't comfortable with it. i also don't feel like it would super ruin photos if he's the only one in it, just leave him in the edge of the photos if that's the case. or instead, maybe you can have him stand 6 feet away without a mask on if he's comfortable with it as an option ahah and then get it edited where he's cut close to everyone. either way, i wouldn't ask him to take it off just for photos if he isn't comfortable.

    • Reply
  • Caytlyn
    Legend November 2019
    Caytlyn ·
    • Flag
    I can’t imagine telling my brother that he can’t be in my wedding photos because he wants to wear a mask in the middle of a pandemic.
    • Reply
  • Jana
    Master October 2022
    Jana ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    I agree completely
    • Reply
  • Bo Miller
    Expert December 2020
    Bo Miller ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    Same. He is in charge of his health and safety since you or the venue aren't requiring masks then he has every right to refuse to take his off.

    • Reply
  • Eri
    Super October 2020
    Eri ·
    • Flag

    You're not a brat for feeling disappointed.

    As much as some people say that they don't care about masks in pictures, or that they're fine with having this pandemic forever intertwined with once-in-a-lifetime moments, no one wants that. No one ever planned for that. It's very easy to say what you would or wouldn't do when you're not actually put in that situation.

    However, as much as we don't want this to be happening during our weddings, it is. My photographer is going to do her best to take shots that minimize the mask presence, but it will be there. For a long time I felt like a shallow, terrible person for being bothered by this, and honestly I'm still not happy about it. But I know that I will at least get some beautiful pictures with my FH outside where we have no masks on, I'll get to wear the dress I adore, we'll have lovely detail shots, and our marriage will be a bright spot amid a world on fire.

    Our state is under a mask mandate, and my venue is requiring them. However, they will not necessarily be policing this, and have made some exceptions for me and FH. I'm still providing masks for every guest, and we will wear them as we visit tables.

    All that being said, I would not get married without my sister -- mask or no mask. We're extremely close (she's the MOH), and my FH is an only child. You have to ask yourself if mask-free pictures are more important to you than his presence. If he's willing to come but wants to have a mask on the entire time, I think that's fine - he won't be in all of the pictures, and at least he'll still be there.

    I really wanted beautiful pictures with my grandmothers. Assuming they come, I plan on wearing a mask for those (along with them), and being 6 feet apart. It sucks, but there's not many other options.

    • Reply
  • Jeni
    Devoted July 2021
    Jeni ·
    • Flag
    There are masks in my wedding pictures and they. look. fine. I think this is just another thing we're all stressing out about that we truly don't have to be. Pre-pandemic, things went wrong on the wedding day that were memorialized in photos. It may stress you out to see the pictures in the near future, but in the long run you'll laugh and/or think back fondly. Like, wow, there was all this going on in the world but despite it all we got married and made it through! Your grandkids will look back at your photos in awe. I actually wish I had more posed photos with masks from my minimony (everyone wore masks and some chose to remove for posed photos) to remember this by.


    Besides, family and their health one billion percent more important than pictutes. They are priceless. I wouldn't even think of asking a family member, especially one given the honor of best man, to step down because of a few pictures.
    • Reply
  • K
    Expert October 2020
    Katie ·
    • Flag
    Here is my opinion, like it or not, you asked for opinions. I think it is very selfish of you to have a wedding during a pandemic and then be upset if someone will not take their mask off. If you don’t want to look back and remember the pandemic then don’t have it during this time and postpone your wedding. My FH and I are getting married in a month and we had a very hard heart to heart and we accepted that if we were going to continue that this is our reality. We postponed our reception as we did not want to put 175 guest at risk and knew that it would not be the reception that we wanted. However, we are doing a private ceremony at our church. Masks are mandatory and I knew this so my pictures will have everyone, including myself and FH in a mask. We can take photos without masks afterwards but I will not force anyone to take them off if they don’t feel comfortable wether I am paying for photography or not.


    You are choosing to have your wedding at this time and that is your right but don’t be upset if someone wants to wear a mask. That is not your right at all. This is your future brother in law, unless there is bad blood between you guys, why would you want to leave him out of pictures? That is silly to me just because of a mask.
    On the other hand, I don’t think he should be threatening not to come if you don’t mandate masks. Just like you shouldn’t tell people not to wear masks, if the venue is not mandating it then there is nothing he can do. It is his right to wear a mask but he cannot make everyone else.
    • Reply
  • Sherri
    Devoted August 2020
    Sherri ·
    • Flag
    Personal beliefs and care are very personal. Let everyone make their own decisions / choices and Be Kind.
    • Reply
  • Alexandria
    Savvy May 2021
    Alexandria ·
    • Flag
    I can definitely understand your frustration and I am so sorry this is something you have to think about. If there are other ways you can make him more comfortable and feel safe, he might be willing to take it off for a picture or two. However, I feel like I can’t force anyone to do anything and if it were my wedding I’d just want people to enjoy it. I would hope he doesn’t bail on you for not mandating it. It is your wedding and it is not his place to say what people can and cannot do. Sending love and support! Goodluck 💕
    • Reply
  • Msalberts
    Master October 2021
    Msalberts ·
    • Flag

    I understand your point of view as well as his. I think it is a bit much that he demand that you mandate masks, but he has every right to wear a mask at all times if he chooses to do so. And if it were me I would want pictures with him in a mask rather than no pictures at all.

    • Reply
  • S
    Expert November 2021
    Sara ·
    • Flag

    Personally, attending a wedding next month where masks were not going to be required would be hard no for me. I would consider it lucky that your FH's brother is willing to take part in your wedding in the first place, and let him wear his mask in the photos.

    • Reply
  • Sarah
    Super August 2021
    Sarah ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    I completely agree with this.
    • Reply
  • Sarah
    Super August 2021
    Sarah ·
    • Flag
    Maybe you could request that he wears a mask color that matches his suit or the color scheme. He'll feel safer that he has a mask on and it'll look more planned for the photos rather then just a random colored mask. Sorry but Theres no way to not remember a pandemic going on while you get married when there is indeed a pandemic going on. Unless you choose to wait, but to each their own. Goodluck
    • Reply
  • Emily
    Expert September 2020
    Emily ·
    • Flag

    I'll be wearing a mask for most of my wedding, potentially including walking down the aisle. Our officiant (a long-time friend) is *extremely* concerned about COVID, but he has graciously still consented to speak at our outdoor ceremony (with a mask on, but he'll have a microphone) and then he's actually not even planning to attend the reception (indoor).

    I'm not irritated, I'm actually in awe of what a great friend he is. He's driving an hour each way for an hour of waiting around and then 15 minutes of ceremony. That just speaks to how much he loves us that he's even willing to still do it!

    I'd recommend trying to shift your perspective and empathize - he's going to be your brother in law. Making the call to not include him (esp due to mask wearing in a pandemic) would send a clear message to him, and not a positive one.

    • Reply
  • Claire
    Beginner October 2020
    Claire ·
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    View Quoted Comment
    I should clarify to add that I do not have a good relationship with my in-laws and they have made our engagement difficult, pre-covid. They have made issues with everything and have been looking for excuses to not go to the wedding/not be involved because they simply do not want to be.


    We are getting married during this time because my dad is dying and we aren’t sure if he will be alive if we were to postpone (which is what his family wants us to do)

    I would implore you to consider how others have to handle their weddings among this time instead of immediately calling people “selfish” for wanting to go through with their plans.
    • Reply
  • needmorewine
    Expert May 2016
    needmorewine ·
    • Flag

    A large gathering doesn't magically become safer just because it's considered a private event vs. public. If you insist on following through with plans to host an event during a pandemic then masks should be required and no one should be treated differently or poorly for wanting to wear one the whole time. People and their health will always be more important than pictures.

    • Reply
  • Hermione
    Expert February 2020
    Hermione ·
    • Flag
    This is like not wanting rain on your wedding and scheduling it during monsoon season... It will rain and you have to work around it. This is like saying, "man I really don't want to move my date but I don't want to remember being married in a hurricane".... You can't have your cake and eat it too. It sucks. Nobody said, "Gee, I hope there is a global pandemic during my wedding." But there is... And there isn't any magic wand to make it go away any time soon




    I suggest you elope and have a big family wedding later... This will keep the peace with both sides. Elope with both parents so dad doesn't miss the ceremony.... Then recreate the ceremony for everyone else a year from now with covid hopefully behind us.


    Might I also suggest mask with everyone's face printed on them?


    I mean you can do social distanced wedding portraits. You could have same household portraits and have social distancing... but if someone is uncomfortable with not wearing mask, then you will either get a photo of a very uncomfortable person that is not happy and not a good photo... Or you will get a photo of someone wearing a mask. And you will hate both. But we cannot wish away covid.


    There are things you can control and things you cannot. So, you can control the guest list, you can control the size, you can control the time/date of the ceremony, you can control the amount of ceremonies you have, but you cannot control the guest, you cannot control your dad's health and you cannot control the plague. You feel what you feel and your feelings are real. However, this is just the reality of it and I wish you the best of luck.
    • Reply
  • Claire
    Beginner October 2020
    Claire ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    We are already married. Our ceremony was in April with no witnesses present due to the viruses. This IS the family event.
    • Reply
  • Hermione
    Expert February 2020
    Hermione ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    Yea, you can have 3 family events. I think we can all agree when I say F 2020. You can have the legal marriage in April, the parents elopements vow renewal, and then the big family wedding in 21... But Lord help me, I hate 2020. I stand by my advice.



    I know this year is hell in a hand basket with wedding planning.
    • Reply
  • Katie
    Rockstar August 2020
    Katie Online ·
    • Flag
    Hi Claire, we did photos outdoors and did quite a few with individuals alone (me and bridesmaid, me and Man of Honor, etc.) to keep everyone comfortable. This may help him feel more comfortable and stay safe to get photos. Hope this helps!!
    • Reply

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