Talking about the LGBTQ+ community can feel like a tongue twister with all our letters, and if you’re anything like many of my students, it can feel like we keep adding letters just to mess with people. But it’s not that at all, of course. We're not trying to confuse anyone! We currently don’t have all our identities represented in the acronyms we use, but we’re trying to get better as a community to include more of the less-represented identities. That’s where the new letters come from.
But where does that leave you when you’re discussing the LGBTQ+ community, whether that’s in conversation, your website, social media or in your marketing efforts? Should you use LGBT, LGBT+, LGBTQ+, LGBTQIAA+, 2SLGBTQ+, 2SLGBTQIAA+ or something else?
First, if you haven’t taken my course, you might not yet know what all the letters mean, so let’s break down the letters above so you have that foundation.
L — Lesbian
G — Gay
Adventurous couple Christy and CaSandra got engaged in Maui and then eloped on a private beach in Moorea, French Polynesia. (See more from their wedding feature on equallywed.com.)
In an idyllic way start to the wedding day, the couple was picked up by a boat from their beachside villa and driven to the private island. The only guest was CaSandra’s 25-year-old-daughter. Later, they enjoyed a reception with family and friends in Atlanta, Georgia.
Their marriers shared some advice for vendors working with LGBTQ+ couples: “Don’t be weird.
“We spoke to a couple of vendors in the Atlanta area when planning our reception and they just seemed awkward or maybe they were hesitant to accommodate us. Gay and lesbian couples are no different than your straight couples and there is no need to be weird or awkward if you truly want our business. The only thing that perhaps makes us a tad bit different is whether or not we are out to our families and wedding planning...
After getting engaged on the Mississippi River in New Orleans, Dawn and Candy decided to throw the perfect garden chic wedding.
Their main goal was “to let love permeate every nook and cranny of every space and heart.”
Their April celebration took place in their hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina. The couple ensured the space was filled with trees and other greenery, like grasses and succulents. They also wanted to support women-owned businesses so they hired an all-female team of vendors.
“The day was perfect!” they said. “Guests enjoyed an intentional and organic exchange of vows and promises and then partied the night away!”
Their advice to vendors: “Please add that you are LGBTQIA+ friendly on your website so that we can forego that opening question in the preliminary discussions.”
It’s seems like such a simple addition, but it can make all the difference for LGBTQ+ couples. Remember that for these couples, it...
True allies make their support about the LGBTQ+ community, rather than about themselves. There is no one way to center LGBTQ+ voices, but here are a few ideas:
After an epic flash mob proposal, Samantha and Leah’s winter wedding took place on the historic riverfront of Wilmington, North Carolina. The couple, who had already been together for ten years, wrote that they “were going for a laid-back yet elegant vibe with a mix of the old with the new, including first look photos on a rooftop bar but a ceremony in an old warehouse.” Their advice to vendors working with LGBTQ+ couples: “Be open, accepting and willing to think outside of the box. It is 100 percent OK to ask what you are unsure of (like pronouns, future names, who wants to walk down the aisle first, etc.) but make sure to listen to what the couple is asking. Also, just think before you speak!
"Nothing frustrated us more than when someone would ask 'so who’s the groom' in your wedding … There is no groom. We are both brides!?”
One of the most fun parts about working with LGBTQ+ couples is the opportunity to shirk tradition...
More wedding and event pros are opening their hearts and business doors to the LGBTQ+ community. As this welcoming happens, it’s important to take note of the level at which businesses are saying yes to equality.
While running our LGBTQ+ wedding magazine, Equally Wed, for the past 11 years, I’ve found that inclusivity and acceptance is happening on multiple levels, from “willing to take money from gay people” all the way to celebrating the full spectrum of the LGBTQ+ community. Being LGBTQ+ inclusive doesn’t just mean being kind to everyone. It requires more work on your part to be intentionally welcoming with your words and actions.
For a wedding business to be authentically LGBTQ+ inclusive means that you have taken at least these measures to embrace all couples:
You’ve taken the leap and invested in a wedding directory listing on Equally Wed, the No. 1 LGBTQ+ wedding website where LGBTQ+ couples come from all over the world to find inspiration for their weddings, engagements and honeymoons and are looking to connect with equality enthusiasts like you. Congratulations! You’ve made a critical decision to get involved with the LGBTQ+ wedding community, to show them you support marriage equality, and to invite LGBTQ+ couples to do business with you. You’re probably thinking “If I build it, they will come,” which is halfway true. You can make the most of your presence on equallywed.com by utilizing the tools we offer to make your wedding directory listing stand out. Let’s talk about the building blocks of an outstanding listing.
Once you’re an approved preferred vendor on Equally Wed, you have full editing abilities of your listing at your directory dashboard to edit it any time of day or night, all on...
Earn your LGBTQ+ inclusive certification from Equally Wed Pro with our online course. Study at your own pace and graduate with an honorable recognition from the No. 1 LGBTQ+ wedding company.