Feeling weird about DH's relationship with his sister :/

posted 6 years ago in Relationships
Post # 3
3692 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

It seems kind of gross and incestuous to me because she wanted to keep it a secret.  Or maybe she’s just a very sad human being who needs to get a life.  A grown adult should not be living solely for their sibling.   

Post # 4
2087 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

Hmm I don’t have this problem, but my sister just moved in with her boyfriend (who will soon be fiance) and he’s 36 and his 30 something year old sister lives with them.  From what I Hear, it’s similar in that she has little social life, makes plenty of money but pays no bills.  And he’s afraid to tell her that they’re moving into a new house in february.  It seems unhealthy.

There’s a difference between being close, and being too close.  It sounds like your hubby wants a normal, close relationship with his sister, but she can’t let go and still wants things to stay like they were when they were kids. It’s like he’s her only friend…from what you’re saying.

Could you try talking to her?  It seems the bigger problem is HER actions towards him and they way she’s trying to be deceptive and go behind your back.  I would let him know that you don’t appreciate the secrets but understand his instinct to protect his sister’s feelings.  But I would talk to her and let her know that there are no secrets in your marriage and she needs to respect the boundaries of your relationship.

Post # 5
5956 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2018

I’m sorry this is bothering you, but I wouldn’t look at it like she was hiding it from you at all, and I know your past with this woman is a little strained, so I understand your defense in a big way…but as someone who is terribly close with her brother and sister, we all kind of have a secret language, and secret jokes and silly memories that no one else knows about, probably wouldn’t care about and it would take to long to explain it anyway….so we don’t, we go into kid space….and my sister and I will make a blanket fort in the living room and watch Beauty and Beast while eating chocolate chips in whipped cream and my brother and I can look at each other, make one gesture and make the other one laugh till they cry….it’s our history together, and it’s not that we’re exluding anyone, they just weren’t there.

I agree that husband and wife make each other number one, but you can’t be everything to each other.  As awkward as your SIL is, she’s still his sister and they’re going to do what they do together, it’s not about you, it’s them…let them do what makes them, them.

Post # 6
3357 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

*slightly creeped out*

Post # 7
9887 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

@Miss Mochaccino:   I’m sure you’re feeling a myriad of complex emotions right now – feeling left out, threatened and jealous – but also feeling in your logical mind, “This is his sister, a sibling, I have no reason to feel this way.” 

The key thing here is not what his sister is doing or trying to do, but your DH’s reaction to it.  It may be a completely innocent, normal and healthy brother-sister relationship.  Then again, maybe it is/was not.  Incest isn’t all that uncommon and I can understand how and why your mind would go there, although the thought is repulsive to most people (as it is it me). 

However, it more than likely is just that this woman is insecure and childish and trying to somehow, someway insert herself into your marriage and keep her brother, or a part of him, to herself.  She doesn’t sound like a psychologically or emotionally healthy person from your description.  She sounds clingy and overly needy of her brother.

Don’t accuse your husband of anything but do ask him about the card.  Explain that it makes you feel a little curious as to the seemingly extreme closeness of their bond – not because she sent him a cute card – but because she was trying to have him HIDE it from YOU, his wife.  That’s not right on her part.  He probably feels somewhat between a rock and a hard place between not wanting to hurt either of your feelings.

No matter what their relationship ever was in the past, it’s in the past now.  As long as they aren’t continuing to be overly intimate now and excluding you from their relationship altogether, it’s ok for them to have a sibling bond.  But it’s not ok for anyone to try to come between spouses, including immediate family members. 

Since your radar has always been up with regard to her based on how poorly she treated you in the past, of course your radar is up now. 

Trust your gut and be observant, but don’t accuse.

You are his new family now so respectfully help him to remember that. 

Post # 8
5220 posts
Bee Keeper

You feel betrayed by your Darling Husband because he didn’t show you a card that his sister gave him containing a picture of two animals?

I think you’re being a little sensitive, it is his sister! I’m incredibly close with mine, and just because I’m married doesn’t mean I share every detail of our conversations, correspondence and interactions with my husband. 

It is possible to be married and have a healthy, loving, trust filled relationship with your spouse and still maintain a healthy, loving and trust filled relationship with your family. You mentioned him putting you first ( or your relationship), but this isn’t an instance where it’s warranted, IMO. She wasn’t bashing you in private or concocting some scheme to hurt you or your marriage– it was just a cutesy card between siblings. So yes, I think you’re overreacting a bit. 




ETA: I reread some other posters suggesting incest. If that’s the case or something you legitimately suspect then yeah, I guess I can see being upset.  However; if its not something you suspect, I think you’re overreacting. 

Post # 9
16195 posts
Honey Beekeeper

Sounds like your husband (not you) needs to have a chat with her about boundaries, and maybe together they can kind a way to adapt their relationship to those boundaries. When you get married, your existing relationships need to adapt. Things can’t be exactly the same because family structures change to put the family of husband and wife first.

Post # 10
1425 posts
Bumble bee

My Darling Husband and his sister also have a very close relationship that I know I will never understand, so I totally hear you.  I wrote a thread about it a couple months ago, as well.  But that whole note/picture thing is slightly… out there?  I would definitely have raised my eyebrows if I found something like that written to Darling Husband from SIL.  Why open it “discreetly”?  Weird…

I agree with @Sunfire:.  Just ask him about it, don’t accuse him of anything.  Hopefully this woman can create her own “bonds” with someone other than just her brother…

Post # 11
9887 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

@Mrs_Amanda:  She’s not upset about the card itself, she’s upset by the message the sister wrote to keep it a secret.  Why would someone use the word “discreetly” if it were completely normal and innocent?  That one word is the red flag to me, otherwise I’d agree with you.

Post # 13
407 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

I think to go from a sisterly card to incest is insane but I can see how other poster’s got there. That’s how you set it up in your post.

I would guess your sister told him to be discreet because he told her you were insecure and jealoous of their relationship. She wanted to send her brother a cute card and knew you would overreact so she asked him to be discreet. I agree. Nobody should have to pick between there family and their spouse because the spouse wants to be their everything.

I think you’re overreacting and I feel for his sister. Hopefully she won’t lose her brother over your insecurity and possessiveness.

Post # 14
1901 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2012 - Franklin Plaza

Did you ask your husband about it? Personally, I am someone who has a freakishly close relationship with my brother so nothing about this seems odd to me, although to most outsiders my relationship with my brother seems odd. 😀 Darling Husband can’t quite understand it since he doesn’t have the best relationship with his sister, but he respects it. My brother and I talk frequently and I miss him to pieces (he lives a few hours away). We also have our own weird inside jokes that no one else quite understands so I’m wondering if “open discreetly hahaha” might not have meant “don’t show your wife.”

I would just bring it up casually to your husband. “Hey, I found this… Why does it say that?”

Post # 15
5220 posts
Bee Keeper

@Sunfire:  IDK, I guess I’d need more information from the OP in regards to her gut feel on it, if that makes sense. People throw around words all the time and don’t really put much thought into the meaning behind it. it could totally be a twisted situation, which– if it is I would def side with the OP. I just didn’t get that feeling ( incest) from reading her post… More that she is annoyed with the letter and wonders if her Darling Husband has made as much progress ” cutting the apron strings” with his sister and she thought and that they discussed in counseling.  The sister sounds a little socially awkward, so maybe she wasn’t meaning for it to be taken quite so scandalously. 


Post # 16
846 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

that’s a little bit creepy. i understand the whole sibling bond thing, but i agree with you that your marriage and the bond between the two of you should be the most important. i would probably mention the letter to him, personally i would want to know why his sister said to open it discreetly..

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