Post # 1
My SO is a great guy but the one thing that bothers me about him is that he always invites his family to go everywhere with us! Don’t get me wrong, his family is wonderful… but it’s awkward for me to have them always around. I can’t understand why he invites his family to everything! And it’s not like we never see them… we probably see them every week or every other week. It’s beginning to drive me crazy. Am I a bitch for not wanting to invite them everywhere we go? I don’t feel the need to invite my own family everywhere we go.
Today was my 6 year anniversary with my SO. We spent the whole day together and had planned to go out for dinner later that evening. On the way to the restaurant, he asked if he could invite his mother to join us (since the restaurant was located by his mother’s office). Initially, I gave him a look (not a good one) and he could tell I meant no. However, a few minutes later I realized that we did spend the whole day together alone and I probably seemed like a bitch for not wanting him to invite her. Eventually, I told him that he could invite her if he wanted to (which he did). Luckily, she had to work.
On another occasion, my parents were hosting a dinner party and had invited my SO. My parents wanted to keep the guest list down to a minimum because the place was quite expensive. After being invited, my SO told me he was going to invite his own family (his parents PLUS extended family – aunt, uncle and children). I told him that this would be a small get together and my parents were not expecting his family to come. Apparently, he didn’t get the point I was trying to make and still invited them. Again, I was in luck. They did not end up coming due to prior obligations.
This summer, my parents have invited my SO and I to go down to their time share in Florida. SO mentioned that he would love to take his parents and extended family to Florida too. I mentioned to my mom that SO wanted to invite his family. Although she likes his family, she didn’t seem too pleased about the idea. My parents invited us to Florida spend quality time with us. How can I tell my SO that his family isn’t invited in the most polite way as possible? I don’t want to seem like a bitch or seem like I don’t like them. I could use some advice or help. Has anyone had similar experiences with this? Thanks in advance!
This topic was modified 2 years, 11 months ago by mjp526.
Post # 2
FI had a similar kind of thing, but not as involved/attached as what your SO seems to have with his family. FI would make plans, just call and stop by his parents’ whenever we were around their neighborhood for a date or anything, and ALWAYs answered mom’s calls, even when we were out for a very fancy dinner for our anniversary.
I told him that, while I love his family, it was also important to me that we have our own things. I asked that he not invite them over/call them up to go see them, or accept their invitations to get together without talking to me first. And I told him that it upset me when he gets in touch with them for our dates, because I felt like I couldn’t be a priority. He had no idea I felt that way and totally understood. And he felt bad that it made me feel that way. I told him I wasn’t trying to dictate when we see his family, but that our time together is important, and we should make decisions together.
I’d recommend the same conversation with him, but be careful not to sound territorial. Explain that you’d like to be a part of inviting them places, and you want to talk about these things first. Explain why it is important to you that you have time together alone. and explain that it is rude to invite his family when he is a guest himself (like he did for your parents’ dinner party). Same for the time share – that is your parents place to invite them to, and it is rude for your SO to suggest bringing his family. If I were in your shoes, I would tell him that this is time your parents want to spend with you, and you feel rude suggesting other guests come along. And since you are saying SO, I assume you aren’t even engaged? You are not a bitch for wanting some boundaries.
Post # 3
Even though it’s annoying for him to invite his family to everything, it does seen like he asks before inviting them, and you give in or don’t clearly say no. Each example you give, you should explain yourself in a nice way. Anniversary-“oh sorry honey, you know I love your mom but I was looking forward to a quiet, romantic dinner just us.” Your parent’s dinner party-“we’re just invited, not hosting! They set the guest list and I know it’s small, sorry! Lets have them over for dinner next week.” Vacation-“I know my parents were looking forward to some quality time with us. It might be strange to invite your family on their vacation since it’s their thing, you know?”
I just get the feeling you give him a “look” instead of clearly stating how you feel. Maybe he has no idea that it bothers you this much.
Also, whatever you do, make sure to speak nicely of his parents. You don’t want this turning into you vs his family in his head. Maybe plan a dinner or something fun with just his family sometime soon so they feel included.
Post # 4
It doesnt seem like he asks her before inviting them, it seems like he TELLS her. Big difference. She has told him politley. She needs to be more blunt.
Post # 5
juanita.kelly.9: I agree, I don’t think he is asking… he does sometimes it seems (like “can my mom come to our 6 year anniversary dinner?”) but generally it is the SO bringing along his family to things he is going with OP.
I don’t think that’s a healthy balance, especially if you’ve been together that long! At a certain age, parents need to let go and not feel hurt or excluded when their children do things with their SOs, and even with their SO’s family. I also think you can like your SO’s family and not want them around all the time. They don’t have to do EVERYTHING with you just for the sake of feeling included… that, I think, is too much attachment. You should be able to go on vacation with your folks without having to invite his, plus his extended family. If that makes them feel excluded, it is their issue, not yours!
Post # 6
When I started reading your story, i was shocked when you said you see them once a week or once every two weeks. Thats not “a lot” like i was expecting it to be. DH and I hang out with my family at least every other day. Thats a lot.
I understand its frustrating that he seems to throw them in last minute, but once every two weeks isn’t a lot……hes not inviting them to “everything”.
Post # 7
You need to start stating a clear no. You are giving half nos, and then giving in. There is no reason that you can’t be a little selfish on speical occasions (your 6 year anniversary) and there is definatly no reason why his family needs to be invited to EVERYTHING with your family. Maybe every once in a while his parents.
The more you give in, and give half nos without putting your foot down, the more he gets that it is okay. “I did it before, so it must be okay now,” will continue to expand to more and more situations.
Post # 8
I expected you to say you’d been together 6 months-a year, but 6 YEARS?? to be honest you’ve obviously made a rod for your own back in not putting your foot down earlier, if you mention it to him now it will look strange, to suddenly see less of his family after 6 years. I agree with you though I wouldn’t be happy, I think it’s a bit weird he’s inviting his mother to your anniversary dinnnr and also VERY rude to invite them to your parents dinner parties/family holidays without an invitation.
Post # 9
He invited his mother to you two’s anniversary dinner? Oh hell no. He needs to cut the apron strings and you need to have a serious talk with him about how sometimes you want it to be just you two.
Post # 10
Remind him that he can only invite guests to events that he is planning. That doesn’t address him inviting his mother to dinner, but it does solve the Florida issue. If he wants to take his entire family to Florida then he needs to plan a vacation for them at another time. It’s rude to invite people to an event where you are not in charge of the guest list (ie hosting/planning) It sounds cultural and maybe he feels guilty for not seeing them enough, but it’s flat our rude to invite people to a party or on vacation if you aren’t the one hosting.
Post # 11
mjp526: We had a similar thing happen to us. It is quite annoying when it seems like they can’t just leave it alone and spend time with you or your family without them being around. One thing that I have done and it may seem bitchy is to stick to my guns about the situation. If we are taking a vacation and he mentions well it might be nice for my mom to go, as he tried with our honeymoon plans (we were planning on going back to his hometown) I tell him no and it’s negotiable. He gets pissy and storms off every now and then (not all the time) as I would too if someone tells me no on any subject, I can’t stand it. That’s something you can try, obviously there are even times when I say hey, why doesn’t your mom come with us? and HE even tells me no. It’s also important to tell him WHY you don’t want them there all the time. Saying no doesn’t always work unless you can tell him why, when I explain how I feel about it, hubby takes it into consideration and usually understands and says okay
Post # 12
If he understood “the look” after 6 years, you wouldn’t have this problem, so obviously you have not established boundaries or made your intentions very clear for him.
He seems to ask you, so when he asks just say, “Honey, as much as I would lov to have them attend, my parents invited just the two of us to go with them. How about we plan a trip with your parents some other time?” That way, you’re saying no, but you also aren’t giving the impression that you don’t want to spend time with his family.
Post # 13
Bexx: When I started reading your story, i was shocked when you said you see them once a week or once every two weeks. Thats not “a lot” like i was expecting it to be. DH and I hang out with my family at least every other day. Thats a lot.
<div style=”overflow: hidden; color: #000000; background-color: #ffffff; text-align: left; text-decoration: none;”>Thanks for replying! Forgot to mention a few details. I know seeing his family once a week or once every other week does not seem like a lot but I only see my SO on Saturdays and Sundays (I’m away at school). Most weekends it seems as if we hang out with his family more than we hang out with each other alone. </div>
Post # 14
Not engaged… yet 😉 We’re high school sweethearts and are just graduating college now. We want to be financially secure before settling down. Anyway, thanks for the advice and sharing your experience! Wonderful how your FI understood how you felt. I’m not sure my SO would understand my feelings immediately. I can predict him feeling upset for awhile or feel as if I do not like his family which is why I am always careful when it comes to these situations. Another factor is that I know I would initially be upset if my SO did not want me to invite my family to occasions or places that I would be excited to them to. Inevitably, a talk about our situation is bound to happen. I will take your advice and talk to him but try not to sound too territorial, as you said. I appreciate you sharing your experience. It has given me some insight of what to say to my SO.
Post # 15
mjp526: I totally hear you and it is frustrating. I struggle sometimes when we see my FI’s family a lot only because they are SO different to mine so it’s a very different environment (don’t get me wrong they are very lovely but my family are very loud, very close and we have a lot of fun – my FI’s family are a lot more reserved and quieter.. years later and it still takes some getting used to!)
I think its totally fine to hang out with his family but in reasonable situations. Your anniversary dinner is not a reasonable situation, she should not have been invited and to be honest I think its a little weird that he thought he could even ask you! Inviting them on your parents holiday is also a no go. Casual dinners at home, special occassions like birthdays, holidays etc. is fine. but I do think it needs to be discussed earlier rather than just thrust upon you at the last minute so you can’t really so no.
It may take some time to break the habit but you should definitely speak to him about it. If you guys get married and have children etc it will make it even more awkward/difficult because you’re definitely going to want your own time then! Just be honest and diplomatic about it. Its lovely he’s close with them, but at the same time he needs to respect your relationship. Discuss it and find a mutual ground that you’re both happy with 🙂