Post # 1
Hi all, I need some advice here or some tips of some kind to handle my current situation! I know there are plenty of posts of SIL’s, etc. but I have yet to find something that pertains to my exact situation…
My fiance and I have been engaged for 6 months now, and been together for almost 5 years. I’m extremely close with his family and have gotten along extremely well with his parents and sister (who is a couple years younger) these last 5 years. However, ever since we’ve gotten engaged, his sister has been driving me up the wall with certain things. I truly do love my future SIL and we are pretty close…but the past 6 months she has been extremely jealous and competitive in very odd ways (well, at least odd to me!).
My future SIL has a boyfriend of almost two years who may not be the greatest guy in the world, but she’s dying to marry him. They have to wait a few years because he doesn’t make much money and he still lives at home with his parents. Anyway, the past 6 months she does things that basically have him competing with me. The family wanted me to be on the Christmas card this year (because we’re engaged) and she threw a fit and didn’t talk to ME for days because she wanted her boyfriend on it. My fiance and I buy my future FIL a birthday present, her boyfriend doesn’t buy him anything, and she’s a total b*tch to me about it and keeps pointing out how her boyfriend loves her dad so much and he thinks spending money is unnecssary as long as he spends time with the family. Mind you, her boyfriend does not speak to any of us, let alone barely acknowledges my fiance and future SIL parents (we think he has high anxiety). Anyway, those are just small examples. I was invited on the annual C family vacation this year (because we are ENGAGED) and again, my future SIL threw a fit and was incredibly rude to me because her boyfriend was not invited (because they are NOT engaged yet). It’s this odd competition thing she has going on that when my fiance and I do something with the family or for the family, she immediately has to put herself and her boyfriend into it as well. The worst was with the annual family Christmas picture where it was my first time being invited to be a part of it and she insisted that if I’m in it, her boyfriend had to be in it too. So my future parent-in-laws caved and allowed him to be in it. That hurt mine and my fiances feelings so much and we’ve been dealing with this dumb competition crap ever since.
Sorry for the long winded explanation, but does anyone have tips on how to deal with this situation?! We’ve been trying to take the high road and ignoring her comments and her poor attitude but it’s just bothering me. Will it ever stop!?
Mrs. soon to be (irritated) C
Post # 2
I hear you, about the annual holiday card thing. My daughter dated her husband, for 9.5 years, before they were married. Her first appearance, on his family’s annual card, wasn’t when they were engaged – it was a photo taken at their wedding. We always included him, and the other now-fiance, in our holiday letter and photos, that we e-mail/mail every year.
She’s immature. Don’t tell her anything about your wedding plans or have her there when you make any decisions. I woulnd’t be surprised if she’d do something dramatic, like set her date before yours, just to spite you. As I just told my daughter, don’t set high expectations, of other people, so you won’t be dissapointed in what they do.
Post # 3
It is sad that she thinks this is a competition. Because she is never going to “win”. What does FI say? I’d let him deal with this since it is his family.
Post # 4
She sounds ridiculous. I agree with PABride. Keep her in the dark with your wedding plans and don’t talk about it with her around. That’s what I had to do with certain members of DHs family.
Post # 5
Please don’t share with her when your wedding is. Let her find out when she receives the invitation.
Post # 6
Why did her bf being included on the Christmas card hurt your feelings? Clearly, she spoke up in defense of her man ans her relationship to get him included. Just because you are engaged doesn’t mean you are wife and therefore legally family. To me that’s not a big deal.
Now, just overall ccompetitiveness is tiring and annoying. Nip it in the butt. Next time she starts with something just say ” this is not a competition. ” Draw her attention to what she is doing. If it continues have a heart to heart with her since you are close to her.
Post # 7
onedaymrsC: This is certainly a difficult situation. Mine isn’t quite the same as yours, but there are some common themes. In my case, DH has a sister who is 4 years younger (now 21) and has been dating a guy that my MIL absolutely LOVES. The competitiveness actually comes more from my MIL than my SIL. When DH and I got engaged, his mother gave us a very hard time, and 7 years into our relationship, I still feel like she’s expecting me to prove myself to her, like I’m not good enough to be part of their family. It’s taken a great deal of effort for me to stop trying to please her, and just focus on my relationship. Because honestly, DH and I are wonderful together.
I was not included in the family photos until DH and I were married, and I was okay with that. I wasn’t “officially” part of the family until then anyway. But, my MIL is so crazy about SIL’s boyfriend (who is a nice guy, but not worth writing home about, in my opinion) that she has already started including him in photos at our family reunions and get-togethers. So, the double standard is glowing like a neon sign, and for a long time, I really let it get to me, to the point that I actually started getting jealous of my SIL! I wanted to be accepted like she and her boyfriend are. And I still do, but now I try to focus my energy on my own relationship, because that’s all I can do. And that’s my advice to you. I think you’re 100% correct in everything you’ve said, and I wish things were different between you and your SIL, but the only thoughts and actions you can control are yours.
I have come to the realization that, even if I do everything the way my MIL would want me to, she’ll never be happy with me. There will always be SOMETHING to pick on. I don’t have a whole lot of faith that my SIL and her boyfriend will stay together long-term, but my MIL is already talking about their wedding (haha) and how great it’s going to be, and because I know her, I know that she says that in front of me because she wants me to think she’s going to outdo my wedding. And I don’t care. My wedding was the best day of my life, and it’s immortalized in beautiful memories that she can’t change or take away. Hopefully my SIL will have a lovely wedding too, whenever it happens.
I apologize for the long-winded story. I wanted to be thorough in case there’s something in my experience that resonnates with you. I think your plan of taking the high road is an excellent idea, and who knows if it will ever stop? Life changes. Who knows what direction your future SIL’s life will take. I think jealousy and competitiveness are very context-based, and often symptomatic of insecurity. The only thing you can do is wait and see.
Post # 8
onedaymrsC: how old is this girl? She sounds very immature.
Post # 9
onedaymrsC: I assume you’ll have control of the list of photos, that the photographer takes at your wedding. Make sure the boyfriend isn’t in any of the “family” photos, since I’m assuming he won’t be a legal member of the family, at that time. Sure, SIL will have a fit, but then you won’t have to see her pouting face, in any of the photos, either.
Post # 10
onedaymrsC: I think you’re fueling the fire by getting hurt or annoyed over her antics. So she wants her boyfriend in the photo too. She makes herself look foolish, as long as you are included and you are happy with that, who cares what she demands or what his family does. It’s their photo and if they are going to let her include him, so be it. I don’t really understand why there are hurt feelings over that.
As for the rest of her behavior, I would smile and always be gracious and let her be the one to make herself out to be a bratty girl. So she competes with you in regards to her SO. Let her. You are engaged, happy and settled. smile and nod and move on.
Post # 11
Maybe she is frustrated because her long term relationship is not being recognized while her brother’s is. It’s not fair that she’s taking that out on YOU but I can understand why it would bother her that you’re involved and invited to all these things, while her long term boyfriend is not. I don’t see why an engagement should bring you automatically into the fold and mean he is automatically excluded.
Post # 12
Unforutnatly, this is one of those situations where your FILs and your FI will have to deal with most of it. Be gracious about being included where you are included. Don’t throw a fit when you are not included, or that your FSIL’s BF is being included early. I think I would get the most satisfication about being the bigger person, and your FILs will probably be happier if you don’t rise to her level.
I bet that your FILs at one point talked you up to FSIL and compared you to her boyfriend in a negative way. She now feels like she needs to defend him to her parents, or she feels like when he isn’t included it is a deliberate snub to her and her relationship. Either way, it’s her issue to deal with.
I would stand your ground about including FSIL’s BF in your wedding. He doesn’t get into family pictures.