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FMIL & Photos

Sorry, this may be a long one.

FI & I recently booked our photographer. During our meeting with her she asked us to start coming up with a list of "Must Have" shots. We were mulling it over and decided we should also ask FMIL if there were any shots she would like to have taken.

Well after a quick phone call to just put the idea in her head, we get a response moments later with quite a few requests (We weren't expecting this as we still have 9 months till the wedding and were just putting a bug in her ear about it).

Well surprise surprise in this massive list of photo must haves I notice something missing...ME! All of her desired shots are of her and her family only.

Quick backstory, during any family event & holiday it's the same thing she insists on photos of her and her 3 boys, and everytime is either pressured or "reminded of the fact that me & her DIL also exist at which point she does another picture that includes us (Somehow these photos never seem to make it into albums or frames, they just seem to disappear)

Well this was kind of the last straw for me and I completely flipped on my FI (I apologized later as this was not his fault, he just happened to be there). This continued behavior is kind of hurtful to me as it makes me feel like I will never truly be considered part of her family.

So I guess my question is what should I do? Leave this be and continue to humor my FMIL? Have my FI or myself explain to her that her actions are (unintentionally?) hurtful and risk her irrationally lashing out at us? (not unknown to happen), or just be an underhanded beatch and tell the photographer that they are to only take the photos that we request (Ok not really the last option, but my inner bitch couldn't help it)

As a side note, as I know this question gets asked alot, No she is not paying for anything so no she is not entitled to make decisions, however we are trying to involve both sets of parents in the planning process because we think it's the right and respectful thing to do.
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Re: FMIL & Photos

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    redheadtmkredheadtmk member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    i would start by deciding what you and your FI priorities are. You will need to consider how much time her pictures will require vs how much time you will have for your desired pictures and the amount of time you have the photographer for. if you only plan on an hour of pre ceremony shots for example, you will need to limit her choices so the photographer can do your family, pre wedding rituals etc.
     Also, if she wants those shots, does she think she will get prints from you guys for free? or will she have to order and pay for any prints she wants? it is nice of you to consider your families in the planning. i would ask her to pick her top 5-10 must haves and go from there. your FI definitely needs to talk about how she excludes you. good luck
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    edited December 2011
    Your FMIL may have assumed that you and your FI already selected pix where you and your FI were included in the pic, and wanted to make sure you included some shots of the family as well.  She may have missed including you in previous photo opps, but I know in my family that we don't typically take family photos with girlfriends or boyfriends unless they're engaged.  To each their own.

    Ultimately, you're doing the gracious thing by asking your FMIL what pictures she would be interested in having done at your wedding or reception, and kudos to you for being considerate of your family's requests, even though they're not financially paying for the event.  They will be family for the rest of your life and I think what you're doing to include them is GREAT!  

    Depending on how long your "must-have-pix" list is, you may have to cut some out if it's the post-ceremony pix.  They start to get long and tedious and people can't smile for that long anyway.  Your photographer can help you narrow down your list if it's too many.  This day only comes once (for a lot of people), and you've got the professional photographer there, you may as well use his/her services to your fullest advantage.  
    July 16, Our Wedding Day, is also International Juggling Day!
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    AutumnFairAutumnFair member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    It's not uncommon for a number of just him and his family shots, same goes for your side. These are usually pre-ceremony shots and really it just give some extra photos for the B&G = families. So I'm thinking that its more of her "always" wanting her sons and not the "whole" family pictures and that she actually listed just those just as her "MUST" is why your really ticked.

    It's really up to you and your FI if you want to have separate wedding shots of each others families, like I said it is not uncommon to have Groom+Mom, Groom+his parents, Groom+his parent+siblings, Groom+grandparents, and vice versa for the Bride so I think it stems more that she excludes you and the other DIL frequently and the first thing that came to her mind for must have shots are ones that again exclude you. So just remember that if you both agree to not do individual with their parents that means you don't get to do any with your parents.

    FYI, when your MIL wants to do "just her sons" for some kind of family picture, your FI needs to stand up and say "Mom, I'm sorry but if my wife isn't apart of this picture, I will not be either." And he needs to stand his ground on the issue even if she pulls the "oh well, we'll get a shot with everyone next".
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    jerseydeviljerseydevil member
    5 Love Its First Anniversary Name Dropper First Comment
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_fmil-photos?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:357Discussion:cadfc26f-0ed0-4879-ad01-b71a4b1b894dPost:60bee249-c823-4adc-83ed-e7bbe1213205">Re: FMIL & Photos</a>:
    [QUOTE]It's not uncommon for a number of just him and his family shots, same goes for your side. These are usually pre-ceremony shots and really it just give some extra photos for the B&G = families. So I'm thinking that its more of her "always" wanting her sons and not the "whole" family pictures and that she actually listed just those just as her "MUST" is why your really ticked. It's really up to you and your FI if you want to have separate wedding shots of each others families, like I said it is not uncommon to have Groom+Mom, Groom+his parents, Groom+his parent+siblings, Groom+grandparents, and vice versa for the Bride so I think it stems more that she excludes you and the other DIL frequently and the first thing that came to her mind for must have shots are ones that again exclude you. So just remember that if you both agree to not do individual with their parents that means you don't get to do any with your parents. FYI, <strong>when your MIL wants to do "just her sons" for some kind of family picture, your FI needs to stand up and say "Mom, I'm sorry but if my wife isn't apart of this picture, I will not be either." And he needs to stand his ground on the issue even if she pulls the "oh well, we'll get a shot with everyone next".
    </strong>Posted by AutumnFair[/QUOTE]

    BINGO! Agree with PPs that her request isn't too unusual and you are probably mostly bothered by the fact that you historically feel excluded from her photos. I would be too, hun!
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    edited December 2011
    First, it was very generous of you to ask your fmil's input on the wedding photographs. If the list is extensive, let her know it may not be possible to get all of them, so she pick her top 5 or 10 or whatever you feel is reasonable.

    This could be a miscommunication between you and your fmil. She may have assumed that you had the traditional shots on your list and were asking her for a list of desired shots for her side of the family. I really hope this was just a misunderstanding.

    In my very old wedding album, there are photos of me with my parents, grandmother and brother. There are photos with my husband, his brother and his mother. The pictures were taken before the ceremony and are very sweet. I don't think there is really anything unusual about that.

    I can see why you would take it the way you did, though, since she has a history of excluding you and fsil from family photos. Your fi should be the one to let her know that you are sensitive about this and that it is offensive to him, also.
                       
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    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_fmil-photos?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:357Discussion:cadfc26f-0ed0-4879-ad01-b71a4b1b894dPost:60bee249-c823-4adc-83ed-e7bbe1213205">Re: FMIL & Photos</a>:
    [QUOTE]It's not uncommon for a number of just him and his family shots, same goes for your side. These are usually pre-ceremony shots and really it just give some extra photos for the B&G = families. So I'm thinking that its more of her "always" wanting her sons and not the "whole" family pictures and that she actually listed just those just as her "MUST" is why your really ticked. It's really up to you and your FI if you want to have separate wedding shots of each others families, like I said it is not uncommon to have Groom+Mom, Groom+his parents, Groom+his parent+siblings, Groom+grandparents, and vice versa for the Bride so I think it stems more that she excludes you and the other DIL frequently and the first thing that came to her mind for must have shots are ones that again exclude you. So just remember that if you both agree to not do individual with their parents that means you don't get to do any with your parents. FYI, when your MIL wants to do "just her sons" for some kind of family picture, your FI needs to stand up and say "Mom, I'm sorry but if my wife isn't apart of this picture, I will not be either." And he needs to stand his ground on the issue even if she pulls the "oh well, we'll get a shot with everyone next".
    Posted by AutumnFair[/QUOTE]

    This!
    My baby girl is a married woman...and now my baby girl HAS a baby girl. Time unfolds in such an amazing way. I've been blessed!
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    edited December 2011
    I think the advice so far has been good. I would suggest that you reply back and say, "thanks for your suggestions, and we will do our best to get as many shots we can from your list as well as from other family's lists as well." This way you are not saying it wont all happen, but you are not promising it will. It also throws in there that she is not the only one who has a list going. As far as what has happened in the past, I think your FI needs to be conscious of that and stick up for you now, especially because you are not just dating anymore.
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    edited December 2011
    I get excluded from in-law family photos too.  Funny thing is, so does FI.  We show up to family events but never make it into the photo album unless we're holding one of the grandkids.  We get our photos taken at these events and then get edited so much so that you wouldn't even know we were even there.  When we asked for photos of us from his family to put on our website it took 2 weeks for any to come back.  We got a grand total of 14 photos of which we were standing in the background of a shot taken 3 times, another 2 where we were blurry in the background, one with FI holding his neice, one with me holding his neice (none of US together mind you with said neice), and (the kicker) one of the backs of FI and his ex girlfriend whom his mother mistook for me!  The most irksome thing is getting emails from his siblings with invitations to go see their Picassa web albums and never seeing ourselves in them.

    You're a unit now.  The MIL can't justify splitting you up anymore, even in photos.
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    trix1223trix1223 member
    5 Love Its Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    At my BIL's wedding:  30 years ago, my MIL decided to have a family photo taken back at the house just before leaving for the reception.  She called together my FIL, my BIL, my DH, and even the dog and had a photo taken.

    Dh's grandma said "What about Trix?  Why isn't she in the picture?"  I replied "We've only been married two years.  I guess I'm not considered family yet."

    I was in every single picture that MIL was in for the rest of the night. 

    At the time I was so insulted. But I came to think that she didn't mean to insult me.  It just didn't occur to her that there was anyone beyond her nuclear family.
    "Trix, it's what they/our parents wanted. Why so judgemental? And why is your wedding date over a year and a half ago? And why do you not have a groom's name? And why have you posted over 12,000 posts? And why do you always say mean things to brides?" palegirl146
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    AutumnFairAutumnFair member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Trix, that was a good burn.
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    tsp698tsp698 member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thanks for the replies ladies. I agree that my reaction may have been a little influenced by her previous behavior when it came to family photos. I honestly shouldn't have been surprised as at any family event she insists on the same set of photos taken every time.

    I emailed her back and thanked her for her list, and that we would definitely try to get as many of these pictures taken as we can .
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    AutumnFairAutumnFair member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    You handled the situation well. Just remember for the future that your FH should stand up to his mom when it comes to stuff like this.
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    calindicalindi member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    My grandmother does this to this day.  At a family BBQ last summer, they gathered all their children and their grandchildren into a "Smith Family Photo" - all their children's spouses (and thus parents of their grandchildren) were excluded.  My Mom gets so pissed off all the time that my Dad's family does this to her, and it hurts her feelings each time.  My Dad has only recently put his foot down as my brother and I have started standing up for my Mom (case in point - at the BBQ, I turned to my grandma and said, "My Mom's been in this family longer than Kerry (my youngest aunt who was born after my parents got married), so she should be in the picture, too.")

    Ultimately the person who has to put their foot down is your FI.  He has to have a conversation that lets his family know in no uncertain terms that YOU are his family, and that any family that includes him also includes you.  So if she wants a picture with her husband, great.  That's fine.  But if she wants a picture with the 'family', then it includes you!

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