How to Tell Your Family You’re Planning to Elope

Let’s talk about eloping. Elopements are my absolute favorite to shoot and with them becoming more and more popular over the years: it’s here to STAY. But what is eloping? Eloping is basically when a couple decides to have a private ceremony with the two of them or with a couple of family members. Usually they involve heading to a cool destination and tying the knot. It’s more personal, without the hassle of a big wedding. I’m LIVING FOR IT.

The TOUGH part is wanting to run off with bae and elope but you are afraid of what your family will think or say. So if you’re thinking about doing it, DO IT and here’s how to break the big news to the fam:

1. Tell them in person + tell them your “why”

Let’s be honest, no one wants to feel in the dark about anything. It’s totally your choice if you want to tell them or not, i can’t tell you want to do! But if you want to tell your fam it’s better to tell them in person and be prepared to tell them your “why”. The sooner you get the secret out the better they will feel about it.

EXPLAINING YOUR WHY: I would recommend writing down all the reasons you want to elope.

“We want to elope because we are more private people and would prefer to have it be just the two of us”

“We want to elope because we are adventurous people and would like to travel somewhere fun and make a trip out of it”

Whatever your “why” may be, it’s important to lay these out so your family can wrap their head around it.

2. Prepare for not so good responses + stand up to your decision

We will always hope for good reactions but unfortunately, there may be some family that’s not too keen about your decision and THAT’S OKAY. I’ve heard it all…

“My family thinks we are being selfish” “My family thinks I don’t care about them because they won’t be there”

The truth is, you can’t make EVERYONE happy. This is not a people pleasing situation and it shouldn’t have to be! It’s about you and your partner having an intimate moment together. You don’t have to feel pressure that they are putting on you to have a big wedding. If that’s not what you want, STAND YOUR GROUND.

You will more than likely have to keep explaining your “why’s” to them and reassure them. You’re not being selfish. In ALL HONESTY if they are mad about it then they are the selfish ones. but they are not ready for that conversation. (and it’s best to not have it go there, lol) We don’t want any fights to happen…just a mutual understanding of you and your honey’s needs and wishes! period.

3. Find ways to get the fam involved! + document the shit out of it!!

Some of my couples have a few family members that attend their elopement, but if you’d rather them not attend, GET THEM INVOLVED. If they weren’t budging before with your decision, coming up with ways to get them involved before you break the news may put them more at ease.

Ways to get them involved:

-Live stream your elopement.

-Record it on your phone to send out later

-Facetime them during or after your elopement

These are just some of the ways you can involve them in your day if you wish. They don’t have to be left out!

If facetiming or zooming is not the vibe, that’s okay too. Hire the best vendor team to document to hell out of every moment so you have bomb photo and video of all the moments to share with them.

4. Celebrate + have a party, baby!!

Who ever said eloping can’t involve a party, before or after was DEAD WRONG.

Plenty of couples i’ve photographed who eloped through a party the celebrate their marriage before or after.

If you’re family is attending or attending after the ceremony, rent a space and have a nice dinner! If you’re family isn’t attending, through a reception when you’re home from your elopement. Nothing like getting family involved like throwing a little celebration after.

I know it’s probably a nerve wracking feeling to tell your family you’re eloping but it doesn’t have to be. YOU CAN DO IT. In the end your family LOVES you and you LOVE them. You’re making the best decision for yourself, don’t lose sight of that. Eloping is effing amazing and in the end you’re gonna look back and think “i don’t regret that decision for a second” I hope these tips help with announcing the the fam you’re doing the damn thing. Happy eloping + you got this, babe!



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