Who Needs to Be Told About Your Engagement Before Posting on Instagram

Take note *before* posting that ring selfie.
The Knot
Updated Dec 04, 2019

You said yes—and now it's time to spread the news! Once you've accepted a proposal, you might wonder how to tell your parents you're engaged before sharing it on Instagram. Even in the age of social media, there are a few people who need to know about your relationship milestone before you post that ring selfie.

Deciding how to tell your family you're engaged is a personal decision that will vary depending on the couple. Ultimately, the most important task is to make sure your closest loved ones hear it from you first. Then, you're free to share as many Boomerangs and proposal photos as you'd like. Here, we break down exactly who needs to be told about your engagement before you go public (in the order you should tell them).

Your Kids

If you or your partner has children from a previous relationship, they should always be the first to know about your engagement. If they're getting a new stepparent (and maybe a stepsibling or two) your family dynamic will change, and they'll need time to process. When you share the news, be sure to give your kids lots of undivided attention so they can ask questions and talk to you openly about the engagement.

Your Parents

After children, parents or parental figures should be the first to know about the proposal. Deciding how to tell your parents you're engaged is a personal choice. Consider sharing the news over a nice dinner or through a creative engagement announcement. If you can't see them in person, a video chat or phone call will suffice.

The announcement style will depend on the nature and proximity of your relationship. If your engagement involves a circumstance where your parents won't be thrilled, it's fine to turn first to a best friend or a close relative who'll be supportive or neutral in their response. Likewise, if you're not speaking with your parents for whatever reason, send them a thoughtful letter, at the very least, instead of leaving them out of the loop. Now's a time for possible new beginnings.

If your parents still have yet to meet your partner, schedule a trip home to enjoy the moment. Understand that meeting your partner and learning about an engagement at once can be overwhelming, so approach the situation with sensitivity and respect.

It's also okay to break the news to your parents without your partner. If they're less than enamored with your fiancé or have concerns about religious or cultural differences, they might need some time to process the engagement. Telling them solo means you'll be able to talk openly without bringing your new fiancé into any tense conversations.

Your Siblings and Close Family

Next, give your siblings a call to share the news. Of course, if you want to tell your parents and your siblings together, do so—the more, the merrier. But if your family is spread out and can't be together for your engagement announcement, your siblings should be told right after your parents.

From there, go ahead and tell other family members like your grandparents or an aunt or cousin you're exceptionally close with. Put yourself in their shoes—if you think they would want to be one of the first to know about your engagement, be sure to share it before going public.

Your Friends and Extended Family

Once your immediate family is alerted, it's up to you to decide how to tell people you're engaged. If you haven't told your BFFs by now, definitely do so. Then, don't forget extended family: Aunts, uncles, grandparents and cousins will be so happy to hear from you (even if your parents or siblings have already spilled the beans). Before doing the big social media sweep, consider getting in touch with any other close acquaintances you want to tell. If you think someone would be hurt after discovering your engagement through the grapevine, consider filling them in before putting it online.

Finally, Go Public

Once you've told all the important people in your life, you can share your engagement announcement on social media. Post your favorite proposal photo or ring selfie with a sweet (or funny) caption. (PS: Don't forget to use #TheKnotRings on Instagram!)

As people call, text and comment their congratulations, try to respond in a timely manner. While it might be overwhelming, everyone will be excited to share the happy news with you. In the meantime, start to build your wedding website with engagement photos and your proposal story. As the details come together, you can share the link with those who will be invited to the wedding. They'll be thrilled to read more about your love story and get excited for your upcoming nuptials.

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