I never thought that announcing an engagement could be such a burden to the engaged couple until my cousin told us she was soon marrying her long-time boyfriend.
To cut a long story short, confusion and hurt feelings were going around the family when some of us felt left out of the engagement announcement. An aunt later on was even asking why a neighbour got a formal wedding invite before she did.
After helping my cousin get through all the necessary explanations to pacify family members, I learned some things about traditions and other essentials about breaking the engagement news to the people around you.
And here are some ideas that will help you minimise the headaches that go with an engagement announcement.
Your Priority List
It doesn’t matter to whom you’re close to. It also doesn’t matter if it’s already the 21st century. It’s still best to follow the traditional hierarchy to whom you should break the news that you’re starting your own family soon. This isn’t just to avoid hurting the feelings of someone, but more importantly, putting a good foundation for your coming marriage.
• Parents - A face-to-face conversation with the parents of the bride should come first. If you can’t make a personal visit (e. g., they’re across the globe from where you are), use the next best medium of communication – a video or a phone call. Next would be the groom’s parents. Even if you’re not close to your parents, make sure you put them first on your list before your friends.
• Other members of the family – Your grandparents should come first, then your siblings. Relatives with whom you have a certain bond should come next.
If the bride-to-be or the groom-to-be already has a child, the child has to be told first before everyone else, including the couple’s parents.
Spreading the News
Personal announcements should always be the first option. Only when it’s impossible to do a face-to-face meeting should you resort to your mobile network and the Internet. Use modern technology in announcing your engagement, but do it wisely and with tact.
Mailed announcements and save-the-date cards – These are very formal announcements, which are very rarely done these days. Online announcements are preferred over these traditional media mainly to cut down on costs. Also, sending by post is much slower than e-mail and other online message services. But if you want to be consistent with the formality of your engagement and wedding, go ahead and send announcements through mail. If you do, however, remember that the recipient will expect that you’ll be sending a formal wedding invitation by mail, too.
Facebook posts and personalised wedding sites – If you’ll be posting on Facebook, your own website or other spots on the Internet, make sure all the details there are already known to your family, friends and others who are close to you.
You should announce your wedding details on pages that can be accessed only by people you’re inviting to your wedding. Otherwise, everyone might expect you’ll be inviting them.
Consideration given to family members is important regardless of the size of your clan. It also doesn’t matter if they’re just around the corner or living in different parts of the world. Keep in touch with everyone, at least until your wedding. It may take extra effort on your part, but it’s an effective way to minimise all the unwanted stress.
About the author
Sofia Angeli is a PR & communications consultant for companies in various industries. In particular, she brings her writing skills and passion for travel, culture, arts and lifestyle, including wedding planning and engagement rings, to the online world.
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