Don't Ask / Don't Tell

posted 2 months ago in Relationships
  • poll: Would you hide evidence your partner sleeps over when your religious family comes to visit?
    Leave it out. You do you. Be proud. : (70 votes)
    78 %
    Hide it. Not worth the grief and the lectures about abstinence. : (20 votes)
    22 %
  • Post # 17
    13 posts
    • Wedding: August 2020

    minnewanka :  Exactly! They should understand at least your decision to move in with your partner. While they might not agree, they should support you as their daughter. My dad is one million percent not onboarding with me living with my FH, but that’s his issues and his religious overtones that are making all of us crazy. He doesn’t agree and has made things complicated, but my FH’s folks are at least more onboard and know we make each other happy.

    Just remember it’s your life. It’s hard to defy religious parents, but you also only hurt yourself by hiding what makes you happy. Probably not worth it to start that conversation over soap, but you should be preparing yourself for lectures if you decide to sit them down for the moving in conversation. 

    Post # 18
    804 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2016 - Wedgewood Las Vegas

    If you were at your parents place to visit, I’d say that you need to abide by their wishes. My hubby and I had to do this whenever we visited his parents, who are also highly religious. They politely asked us to not share the same bed before marriage while we were in their house. Not a big deal.

    However, they will be visiting you, at your home, so in turn your wishes/beliefs should be respected. I wouldn’t bother ‘hiding’ it. They already know you are having sex with him and having ‘sleepovers’ . I wouldn’t make a big deal of it at all.

    Post # 19
    2039 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: February 2016

    minnewanka :  if you leave the stuff out and it raises a question, are you going to answer honestly or deflect again?

    You’ve told your mum the explanation that she wants or lied to her by omission for a while. You’ve had a lot of opportunities to explain your stance and avoided it. I’m not saying it’s easy to have that conversation, especially with very religious parents. I just don’t think this is going to be the huge glaring clue you think it is without a bit of nudging and honesty from you.

    Has your mum and dad met your partner? It might be time to start subtlety filling in the blanks. “Oh hey mum, sorry I missed your call I’d left my charger at home and stayed at boyfriend’s last night. How’s your day been?”

    Post # 21
    162 posts
    Blushing bee

    minnewanka :  lol, when you do move in with your boyfriend just get a two bedroom (use it as an office or walk-in closet). Your parents are clearly happy to stick their heads in the sand, they’ll pretend you’re sleeping in the other room. You’ll be fine with the shampoo out

    Post # 22
    1210 posts
    Bumble bee


     leave it out. I come from a religious family but my mom is way more chill and she gets it. 

    I learned to adopt my own don’t ask/don’t tell policy. 

    Don’t ask them for permission or allude to needing their approval in any way by trying to explain your deeply personal choices in your relationships and in turn they won’t tell you how wrong you are and lecture you about what they think you should be doing. In other words, stand by your choices but don’t make a big deal of it. 

    They now respect me because they have seen through my actions that as an adult, I think through the choices I make and I stand firm and confident in those choices and I don’t give them the impression that I’m asking for their approval or permission. 

    It has made a world of difference. 

    Disclaimer: this advice does not apply to anyone under the age of 21 and/or who still depends financially on their parents. That’s a different situation and I would never encourage someone to make rash or irresponsible decisions or rebel against their family to prove a point. 

    Post # 23
    4568 posts
    Honey bee

    My parents had me until I was 18.  They don’t have to like my choices after that, but they do have to respect my autonomy and right to make the decisions I feel best for myself.  I have no room for people who can’t do that regardless of whether we share DNA and will not hide any aspect of my life because I’m not ashamed of my life.  

    In fact, if I were in your boyfriend’s position of potentially having my existence hidden from your apartment and our life downplayed or hidden (if that is the chosen option), I’d probably be a bit offended and questioning whether I want to be with someone who feels the need to hide who they really are and lacks the confidence and independence to live their life honestly.

    Post # 24
    1197 posts
    Bumble bee

    You have told your mum you are an atheist. She dealt with that pretty well really, considering she is very religious, and saw the positive that you were honest. She has seen your birth control pills and told you  she would be there for you if you needed to confide in her. I don’t see your mum as someone that is that naive, with you being 30, that living with someone (or even that your boyfriend really doesn’t sleep on the futon) would be a massive shock. You are a grown adult maybe it is time they treated you like one. Do you really want to continue this weird dynamic of game playing?

    I am a big fan of just telling the truth about things and dealing with the aftermath.”It’s my life mum and dad and I love you and respect you but I will live my life the way that makes me the happiest.”

    Their beliefs are not yours. Don’t be ashamed of your love for your boyfriend and try to hide it. You want to share your lives together and that includes living in the same appartment.

    Post # 25
    6499 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: February 1997

    Leaving it out or not is your call, and your family may differ from the religious folks I know, but if you already told them you were an atheist *gasp* I don’t know that you telling them that you and your partner were going to get an apartment together would be anywhere near as shocking. My mum isn’t even particularly religious, and whenever she mentions my atheism, she says it in a hushed tone or just mouths the word like the mere utterance of it is offensive. And, when a person thinks about it from a traditional Christian perspective, one can ask forgiveness for sex and living together before marriage. Atheism is more or less dooming you to hell.

    Post # 26
    248 posts
    Helper bee

    Apologies for my influenced opinion; my mom was raised Presbyterian and incredibly loose on religious laws. Dad was raised very religious which caused a full-on religion block and he is an atheiest himself.

    I seriously (even with people in my family I love) don’t understand hiding things for their benefit. I just cannot understand hiding your normal, everyday stuff from your parents. It’s hard to give you a good opinion because my mom was the first person I told when unmarried boyfriend and I decided to move in together. She and Oma (German for grandma) were thrilled. Dad was totally cool. No issues there. I’m sorry I can’t offer a more akin-type situation for you! If they do the whole “oh, this bottle was meant for your dad! How nice!” thing than thats fine, I think. Just roll with those punches, in my opinion.

    Post # 27
    1049 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: June 2019

    gryffinfoot :  No way I’d be spending 100s of dollars more per month just to pretend to my family

    Post # 28
    962 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: January 2019

    Personally, I hid it until I was certain this was a person worth ruffling feathers over. And when I did ruffle feathers my parents actually backed off, they recognized if I was willing to deal with that confrontation I must be serious about this person. Now to each their own, that’s just what I did. Everyone and every family is different.

    Post # 29
    364 posts
    Helper bee

    I hid this type of thing from my parents for many years. I was traumatized by the way they reacted when they found out I was sexually active with my college boyfriend (long horrible story) and so for the following decade, I continued being sexually active but went to extreme lengths to hide it from my parents because I didn’t want a repeat of the college bf episode. Even at the age of 30, when dating my fiancé, who was sleeping over multiple times a week, I’d obsessively hide all traces of that before a visit from my parents. I had so much anxiety about it. I knew it wasn’t healthy, so eventually I went to therapy which was somewhat helpful. It kinda gave me the kick in the butt I needed to let go of the anxiety and just live my damn life without so much fear of disappointing my parents. I ended up moving in with fi before our wedding and came clean to my parents about that one (hiding it would have been impossible). That was pretty shitty for a bit but what do you know, they got over it and the relief I felt in no longer having to live a double life around them was huge. 

    Anyway point is…I wouldn’t judge you either way, but I think the healthiest thing for you to do is to actually stop worrying about this and stop strategizing about the best way to break it to them. Don’t hide the evidence…just live your life and if your parents ask about it, tell them the truth and then move on. 

    Post # 30
    1611 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2018 - Location

    By hiding the stuff you send the message that you still need their permission even though you’re a fully functioning independent adult. I know you want to respect your parents but they need to know that they don’t control your life. This will help for when you decide to buy a house, get married, have kids, etc. Assert yourself! 

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