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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul. 16, 2009
    Posts
    95

    Default Need serious relationship/family/in-law advice (long!)

    I need some relationship/family advice… really long!

    I have been dating my boyfriend for 6 months now. We are so in love and I honestly want to spend the rest of our lives together. He has told me he wants this as well. So, in summary, everything is perfect… except…

    BF has a really screwed up family. He has no relationship with his parents. None. He left home at 17 due to the fighting between them (sometimes physical with his dad), and has not looked back. When he was 23 and 24 he was in two separate workplace accidents, and was unable to care for himself. His only option was to go home and his parents took care of him. During one of these times, he discovered his mother had stolen his identity (years earlier, won’t go into detail) and was now stealing money from him while he was lying on their basement couch pretty much unable to move.

    He has 2 younger brothers whom his parents left alone and moved an hour away to a second house while they were in high school (15 and 17 I think). As a result of this, one brother did not finish high school but is employed, and the other did finish and is doing fairly well for himself. BF and brothers are now in their mid-twenties. Brothers have relationships with the parents, BF has relationships with brothers, but there are limitations due to brothers having relationship with parents.

    So, in summary, his parents suck. I get the feeling they want to have a relationship with BF, but he will have none of it. He does talk to his dad maybe twice a year (not exactly friendly but they talk), but cannot tolerate his mother. Given the above (and trust me, there is more) I understand. BF recently moved and his parents sent him a housewarming/birthday present of dishes, cutlery, etc. which I was very surprised at, and so was he. We talked about it, and he said he really didn’t know what to think, so I left it at that.

    To complicate matters more, parents have isolated themselves from all extended family, save mother’s sister, as they are ‘crazy’. No family will talk to them (won’t go into detail why, but to get a clear picture, one incident involves her running an uncle over with a truck… I digress). BF has a decent relationship with aunts and uncles; however this is relatively new as while he was a minor there was no contact. BF enjoys his little cousins and is an active part of their life when he can be (he works far away sometimes). Aunts and uncles perceive BF’s brothers as being on “parents side”, so are not really ok with BF having a relationship with them. It’s pretty much an ultimatum for him: brothers/parents (even though the parents are unwanted) or extended family.

    I have been in past dating relationships and really enjoyed having “in-laws”. Sometimes they are annoying, but I have only had good experiences. I am more than aware that there are terrible in-laws! I love BF, and he is enough. He knows I enjoyed “in-laws”, but also knows he is enough for me and I want to be with him regardless. BF feels badly he will never be able to give me “in-laws”. BF loves my family and considers my parent’s house a home he is always welcome in.

    I don’t really know what I’m looking for… advice I guess, or guidance. Screwed up family life is not what I’m used to and this is just BEYOND! I come from a very normal Christian home and have loving and supportive parents. My parents love BF, think he is a great guy. They care less about his past then where he is headed in the future. What does one do??? Appreciated



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct. 21, 2003
    Posts
    8,701

    Default

    How old are you?

    My advice, do nothing. You have only known him 6 months. I dated my husband for 8 years and waited until I was 35 before I got married. There is no rush. See what happens over the next couple years..



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb. 20, 2010
    Location
    All 'round Canadia
    Posts
    7,440

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Perfect Pony View Post
    How old are you?

    My advice, do nothing. You have only known him 6 months. I dated my husband for 8 years and waited until I was 35 before I got married. There is no rush. See what happens over the next couple years..
    Agreed.
    My best friend cut all ties with her toxic parents, and her husband accepted this when they met and eventually married. After almost 10 years she has re-established contact with her mother, but not her father.
    Whatever happens, it will take a lot of time, and a relationship with his parents may never be in the future. If you want to stay with him, accept that, perhaps keep the hope for some kind of reconciliation, but don't meddle.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul. 16, 2009
    Posts
    95

    Default

    I'm 25. Yes, that's young.

    When I say I want to spend the rest of my life with him, I do. Does it mean we're shipping out to Vegas by the end of the year to get hitched? NO lol! We're not in a rush.

    I agree with you two, I have said little and done nothing and that's my comfort zone for the time being. I want to look at this from all angles and am interested in others' experiences and advice, you are (mostly) older and wiser!

    Thanks



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2007
    Location
    NW Louisiana
    Posts
    5,281

    Default

    Definitely wait a while before getting married. You've known the guy for 6 months. You're still in the honeymoon period.

    Aside from that, in-laws are mixed blessing. Mine are great most of the time. But some of the more extended family are constantly causing problems. Drug use, criminal records, a lot of mooching off those who can't manage to draw a line and say no. There is a lot of drama, and at times it causes a good bit of stress in our marriage, since I am not going to be a doormat for people who choose not to get their $hit together. Some days I wish I didn't have all the baggage that can come with in-laws!



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar. 28, 2006
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    3,373

    Default

    I think all you can do is be supportive of whatever choices he makes. Sounds like, in spite of a poor upbringing, he has a good head on his shoulders and isn't going to do anything foolish, in regards to his family.
    Family Partners Welsh Ponies - Home of Section B Welsh stallion *Wedderlie Mardi Gras LOM/AOE http://www.welshponies.com
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec. 20, 2003
    Location
    N. Augusta, SC (but forever a BUCKEYE!)
    Posts
    1,793

    Default

    I only wish I knew 6 months in what a horrible mother-in-law I was going to have. I didn't find out what a horrific person she was until 5+ years into our marriage. She moved away last October and hasn't spoken to me since...doesn't hurt my feelings one bit. She plays games with her son's emotions...it's brutal. I wish he would just cut ties and walk away...
    Random horse pics http://www.flickr.com/photos/glfprncs/
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul. 16, 2009
    Posts
    95

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by glfprncs View Post
    I only wish I knew 6 months in what a horrible mother-in-law I was going to have. I didn't find out what a horrific person she was until 5+ years into our marriage. She moved away last October and hasn't spoken to me since...doesn't hurt my feelings one bit. She plays games with her son's emotions...it's brutal. I wish he would just cut ties and walk away...
    This is exactly the kind of thing I'm trying to avoid... I don't want to look back and wish I had done something/not done something 5 years later.

    Sorry you're dealing with this



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul. 11, 2004
    Posts
    7,022

    Default

    I'd worry more if he wanted to have a relationship with his parents.

    Be very careful...lots of demons in his past...and you sure don't want to deal with them.
    "Sic Gorgiamus Allos Subjectatos Nunc"



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec. 21, 2005
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    517

    Default

    I think its perfectly reasonable that you're thinking about these things, six months in is not too early. What's better, to date him for two years then realize you can't handle his family situation?

    It sounds like your BF does handle his family well and you like him enough to seriously consider him as for a long term relationship. Certainly I don't think someone should be judged by their family but also don't underestimate the effect on your life his family will have. Are you close enough with your parents to ask them what they think? Do you have close friends you can have a discussion with about your concerns? How does your BF see himself living the rest of his life, does that line up with what you're aiming for?

    If it were me considering dating someone with a lot of family disfunction it would make a huge difference how they spoke about their family. Do they sound angry and resentful about it or do they express regret about the situation but don't dwell on it? Its important that the other person has adequately dealt with the issues before entering into another relationship, otherwise I believe they're doomed to repeat the past.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct. 3, 2007
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    5,174

    Default

    For the love of God, why would you want in laws of any sort? Sorry, I can't get past the longing for in laws. I tell my girls to marry orphans - and I'm not really joking.

    As it is you haven't been dating long and it sounds like he is figuring things out. Just be there as a sounding board. Just remember that all the petty annoyances and issues with his family will become yours too should you marry this boy. Make sure that you can handle all the baggage.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb. 11, 2008
    Location
    gorgeos city
    Posts
    721

    Default

    You know the difference between inlaws and outlaws?





    Outlaws are wanted.


    .
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    -//------\\-



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep. 20, 2005
    Posts
    3,504

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mickey the Marcher View Post
    You know the difference between inlaws and outlaws?





    Outlaws are wanted.


    .
    I have no idea why that made me laugh so hard, but it did.

    OP, I think the only thing you can do is be passive and supportive. Unfortunately, his choice to have a relationship with his parents (or not) is just that - his choice. And you probably shouldn't seek to influence him.

    As for the "I want to spend the rest of my life with him" thing, I know where you're coming from. 6 months into my current relationship I was CONVINCED that we should be together forever and ever and ever. Now I'm 2.5 years in and I'm a little bit more reasonable about the whole thing. I still want to be with him and I still think we'll eventually get married, but I'm in no hurry. It's amazing the things that change once the infatuation wears off.
    "Are you yawning? You don't ride well enough to yawn. I can yawn, because I ride better than you. Meredith Michael Beerbaum can yawn. But you? Not so much..."
    -George Morris



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