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5 top tips for guests at a gay wedding ceremony

Posted by Debbie Skyrme on Friday 7th June 2019
5 top tips for guests at a gay wedding ceremony

Guest etiquette at a same-sex wedding ceremony

You and I, would both agree on the joyous nature of our LGBT community and if you are someone, who is about to attend their first gay wedding, you are in for a treat!

Here are 5 guidelines that will help you become a better guest at a same-sex wedding.

Agata Jensen2

Photo credit: Agata Jensen

1. Same-sex couples aren’t looking for approval from you:

“I am so glad you guys are having a same-sex wedding.” This might seem harmless to many but can be offensive to same-sex couples.

They are having a wedding, a traditional wedding, that a lot of people in love generally do. It's special or not special because of the couple involved or the story the couple shares. It’s not special because of the gender of the couple. Understand that it’s not a type of wedding, that needs to be labelled.

2. Don’t invite yourself to a wedding and be serious about the RSVP:

This is no joke, but a lot of guests use the RSVP card to talk about their feelings about same-sex weddings.

Don’t invite yourself to someone’s wedding when you don’t have an invitation card. You might know the couple, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they want to share their wedding day with you. It could be for reasons like privacy or change of opinions etc. Decide in advance, if you want to go or not, as soon as you get an invitation to a same-sex wedding.

Agata Jensen 1

Photo credit: Agata Jensen

3. Be careful about using terminologies that the couple use and don’t force your opinion on them:

As a straight individual, you may or may not be aware of the terminologies that same-sex couples use.

We don’t blame you for that! However, it’s wise to do your bit of research before attending the function. See what terminologies the couple is using and stick to it. You can also use the names of the couple if you aren’t sure of the terminologies. There are practical reasons why same-sex couples use specific terminologies. Keep your tone in check, be it with the same-sex wedding gift or the cards that you have planned.

You might have opinions about how a wedding should or should not happen. Irrespective of the marriage being a straight or a same-sex one, you should keep your opinions to yourself. The couple has already put in a lot of effort along with their experienced Celebrant, planning the day. Do not hurt their sentiment by saying things that may be hurtful.

adriana watson1

Photo credit for this photo and featured photo: Adriana Watson

4. You don’t have to ask about their plans in front of others:

Every couple works differently, be it a straight couple or a same-sex couple.

Some couples like to travel while some others like to stay back and focus on creating a beautiful home together. You must be undoubtedly curious about things like how the law works for same-sex couples and about parenting etc. That’s justified but disgraceful to be asked during a wedding. Check online to answer your doubts or ask the couple respectfully when they are in a more relaxed setting and alone with you.

5. Be mindful of what you are posting online:

It could be a garden wedding that’s forcing you to gram it. It could be a beach wedding with too many DIYs that you want to "go live" with. But it’s not okay to make things public before consulting the couple.

Not all same-sex couples are open about their relationships. Some couples are more closeted than others. It’s their personal story, which they might or might not share with their guests. Everybody deserves to have their own space that they are comfortable in.

Feel fortunate that they are sharing that space with you. Understand that they expect you to be supportive and appreciative of their decisions. This is a kind of trust, that the couple is bestowing on all their guests. Check with the couple if they are fine with you posting their pictures online. It’s understood that you are excited, but ensure that you won’t be offending the couple by doing so.

Above all have a wonderful time! You are attending a wedding of two people in love. Enjoy the celebrations!

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Featured celebrant: Bronte Price

Featured celebrant: Bronte Price

Australia's Bronte Price is the first ever certified gay celebrant from the continent that now boasts of marriage equality. He is also the co-founder of an Equality Network that caters any LGBT wedding needs by creating a better experience through wedding suppliers. As a member of the GLOBE (Gay and Lesbian Organization for Business and Enterprise), he works tirelessly to empower the LGBT community. 

Images by kind permission of:
Agata Jensen
Adriana Watson
See Bronte's web site here

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