In June 2015 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down all state bans on same-sex marriage and legalized it in all fifty states. Just two years after legislation passed, more than 1 million LGBT people were married to someone of the same sex, a number that continues to grow. The substantial and immediate increase in marriages among LGBTQ+ couples since marriage equality became legal nationwide goes to show the sincere desire for marriage among LGBTQ+ couples.
With an estimated 2.6 million weddings happening in 2022, wedding planning and the wedding industry won’t be slowing down anytime soon. Both as wedding vendors, and as people getting married, there are a few things we can do to make wedding planning inclusive, fun and exciting. Here are a few quick tips:
As a wedding vendor
Ask for Gender Pronouns and always state your own.
When cisgendered people publicly share their pronouns, it helps reduce the othering felt by trans and nonbinary people sharing their pronouns, and shows they understand the importance of pronouns. This helps create a more comfortable and genuine space. Also, by giving people an opportunity to share their pronouns, you are less likely to misgender someone. If you do mess up someone’s pronouns, the best thing to do is simply apologize, rephrase and move on.
Remove bride-centric language from your business processes.
Toss out the words “bride” or “groom” and opt for gender-neutral language. Change phrases like “the bride and groom” to “the couple,” or “the bride” to “Partner 1” or another non-gendered term. Offering your own gender pronouns, as noted in the previous tip, will help initiate a conversation with your client about how they are comfortable being addressed.
Most wedding planners and planning checklists use terms like "Women's attire" and "Menswear". A simple change to language like "dresses and gowns," "suits and tuxes," offers a more inclusive picture.
Finding LGBTQ+ friendly vendors
Do your research.
Weddings are all about research. Luckily, you usually won’t have to dig much deeper to determine whether a vendor is LGBTQ-friendly. The first thing to do is look at their photos. If the vendor’s Instagram feeds and website galleries feature photos of real-life same-sex couples, it’s a safe bet that they are inclusive.
Once you’ve secured an inclusive vendor, ask for recommendations for other vendors they like to work with, who are just as inclusive as they are. Still, do your research on those recommendations to make sure they are an ideal fit for you and your wedding day dreams.
Search LGBT+ wedding directories or visit a Wedding Show.
The June 2022 Wedding Show marks AZ Wedding Show’s inaugural partnership with LGBT Weddings to provide a supportive, inclusive and welcoming environment for all attendees dreams no matter who they are or who they love. With the help of LGBT Weddings’ stamp-of-approval vendor badges, we’re creating an environment where members of the LGBTQ+ community can rest assured that they’ll have open and comfortable conversations with our vendors and even find vendors that specialize in LGBTQ weddings. Planning for your wedding should make you feel excited and prepared and we’re proud to be an inclusive event that’s supportive of every couple’s big day.