Post # 1
We’re spending Christmas with FI’s mom and I’m meeting his aunt and uncle for the first time. My relationship with his mom has been a bit strained but getting better. I was mostly excited for the holidays, until recently finding out that his aunt thinks we’re “spoiled” for having our wedding in a historic mansion rather than a hotel. She actually said she might not come because it’s a 3 hour drive and she would have to drive back in Labor Day traffic.
I know she has some jealousy issues because her daughter, who is our age, is still unemployed, while FI and I got good jobs. Also, she apparently did not have her dream wedding so a little bitter about that. Still, I don’t think this is an excuse to call me spoiled, and I don’t know how to approach meeting her.
Do I pretend I don’t know what she thinks and just make small talk for a few hours? Or do I ask her about how she feels (directly, but nicely) and try to clear the air? How do I not take this personally and get upset at her?
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Post # 3
I would take the high road and pretend you don’t know what she said…and I would also be sneaky and try to convince her you aren’t spoiled. I would wear nice conservative clothes and bring something you baked yourself and mention any volunteering you do, etc. If you can change her opinion now you might save yourself YEARS of hassle later!
Post # 4
I know how hard it is to not take things personally. I am sorry you have to have this hanging over your new relationship! But I wouldn’t let her know how you feel. I say this not to protect her, but because you can’t make her be a different person than she is. Also, her opinion (or her need to express her opinion) may change once she has met you and spent time with you. Also, once the two of you have had a chance to get to know each other you might find she would be open to a conversation about what her comment meant to you, so perhaps my advice is more along the lines of play it by ear.
Post # 5
I agree with snmcdowell, I would def take the high road and try to subtly convince her that you aren’t spoiled. You attract more flies with honey than with vinegar, so be your sweet natural self with her. Also if she is jealous because her daughter doesn’t have a job, etc, don’t talk about yours too much. I wouldn’t even mention it, unless someone asks you, then say as little as possible and change the subject. Same thing with the wedding.
Post # 6
Unless she’s called you “spoiled” to your face, give her the benefit of the doubt. There are issues between FMIL and Aunt, and it’s quite possible FMIL decided to take a fairly innocuous remark and run with the worst possible interpretation because of HER problems.
What I mean is, you don’t have to collateral damage in someone else’s family drama.
Post # 7
I would totally pretend I didn’t hear anything she said. Maybe, once she meets you and realizes you’re not spoiled, she’ll change her tune. Its one of those “kill them with kindness” times because anything you do say may come off confrontational. And even if it doesn’t she may be the type to get defensive, and it could escalate. At the end of the day, its your wedding and you can do whatever you want! Besides, you guys can’t please ’em all!