How to Include Your Mother in Your Wedding Planning from a Distance

As the battle with COVID-19 continues, wedding planning from a distance is the new reality. From moving vendor meetings and venue tours online to at-home fittings and tastings, the pandemic has made significant changes to the wedding planning process. And, with many couples social distancing away from family members, it also means including your mother, mother-in-law, and other close family has become more difficult. Your engagement is such a special time and nobody wants to feel left out. But what do you do when you’re physically apart? Of course, even before Coronavirus, wedding planning from a distance was a challenge faced by many brides and grooms who live away from their families. The good news is that, with care and creativity, it’s an obstacle that you can easily overcome.

Here are six ideas for involving your mother in the wedding planning process when you can’t be together in person.

Set up regular check-ins and ask for her input. Your mother will probably be missing joining you for important meetings and sharing her input or advice with you. While dialing her into virtual vendor meetings may not be right for you, do keep her informed with regular check-ins. Set up a recurring meeting on Zoom or another platform so you can keep her looped in on the details. It isn’t just about keeping her up-to-date! It’s also about creating a space where she can share in your excitement and offer her support if you feel overwhelmed.

Take lots of pictures. Wedding planning is often a very visual process, which makes it a lot easier to share virtually. Take pictures as you meet with florists, bakers, and other wedding vendors. Create a shared Pinterest idea board. And, for important moments like wedding dress shopping, be sure to FaceTime her so she can feel like part of it.

Invite her on virtual venue tours. Inviting your mother (or mother-in-law) to tour a venue with you is often a good idea. Now, with many couples doing virtual instead of in-person tours, it’s even easier to include her! An extra pair of eyes is always welcome.

Give her ownership of specific tasks. Giving your mom a specific job is always the best way to make her feel involved when you’re wedding planning from a distance. If she’s super organized, put her in charge of RSVPs. Is she crafty? Ask her to make or assemble the favors. If she’s a pro researcher, ask her to look into local vendors. There are so many tasks she can take on from a distance. Not only will she feel special and included, she’ll be able to lighten the load for you.

Include her in planning the ceremony. The wedding ceremony is the center of your wedding day, so including your mom in planning it will show her how important she is to you. Whether it’s choosing a reading or poem, giving feedback on your vows or music choices, or planning a way for her to participate like lighting a unity candle or walking you down the aisle, there are many ways to make her part of this moment.

Make her (virtual) dress shopping experience special. The bride’s dress might be the main event, but don’t let her gown feel like an afterthought! Do some virtual shopping and idea swapping together. And, just as you’ll share pictures from your dress shopping adventures, ask her to do the same with you. You could even make a (virtual) day of it, with shared screens and glasses of bubbly as you trawl for dresses online or she tries on her options for you to weigh in on.

Most importantly, remember to communicate. Emotions can run high and it’s easy for tone to be misinterpreted over text message or email. If you find yourself getting frustrated, take a deep breath and talk it through.


Image: The Day by Ira Lippke