Post # 1
So we are getting married in October this year. We are starting to plan things and some issues are rearing their ugly heads.
I have a very small family. My mom, brother and I are very close but that is it. My fiance has a large and close family. A brother, sister, mom, dad, aunts, uncles and cousins. That’s fine and all but his mom is pressuring me to invite EVERYONE from their side, even people I haven’t met. Now with my side being so small and in the interest of keeping the wedding small, this is making me very uncomfortable. I have stated this several times to them and my fiance does not back me up in front of his mom, though he will when it is just us discussing.
Additionally, we see his family A LOT. We camp nearly every summer weekend with them. They get all the major holidays, mothers and fathers day, birthdays, ect ect. Mostly because he is so close with them and I am not able to see my mom and bro often due to their health issues.
It has been fine but this past winter I needed a break from his family as I had suffered a miscarriage and just needed some recovery time without all the probing. And now his brother (who is in his 30s) is saying how he feels like my fiance is avaoiding him. Now his brother and sister are single and thus spend a lot of time together and with their mom. Which is fine that’s what you do when you have time on your hands. We on the other hand are busy doing couple stuff in the off seasons. Even then we see his family about 2-4 times a month which I feel is WAY more that sufficient. And yet they are giving him grief and I am sure they are blaming me (they have mentioned to me in the past that they didn’t like fiance’s ex as she kept him away from his family…eye roll) They are big drinkers and very selfish ie they never really talk about anything but themselves. So sometimes, I just don’t feel like being around that kind of energy. And we have a lot of hobbies in the winter/fall that have us pretty occupied.
I feel like this is going to be an issue. I expect my fiance to make me and our future kids #1. I do not think it is very healthy for his family to give him grief if we have been busy and not be able to see them for a few weeks. I don’t think it is okay to feel obliged to do things with them as they see fit OR face a guilt trip. I really feel we spend more time with them than most people spend with their families. Marriage is serious and you are marrying that person’s family too. Between their intrusiveness in our wedding planning and the drama they are starting to cause now that we are engaged I am feeling uneasy. I love this man but it feels like a bit of a red flag to me that things are starting to go this way.
What are your thoughts? Has anyone had to navigate this kind of situation? If so, how did you handle it? Thanks in advance ladies. Xoxo
Post # 2
beekind2 : I only have a few family members that I’m close to, my husband has multiple siblings, cousins, uncles, aunts, grandparents that he’s close with so he definitely had more guests on his “side”. At first when we started doing the guest list it bothered me a bit, he also has more friends than me, but I quickly realized it’s not a competition and got over it. But, I also enjoy my in laws more than it sounds like you do…
Your husband needs to have your back, if he’s not agreeing with them but too scared to stand up to them, that’s a huge issue that I would want worked out prior to getting married to someone.
Have you tried having a serious discussion with him about how you’re feeling?
Post # 3
beekind2 : agree with pp, you need to make sure he’s got your back and stands up to his family BEFORE you get married.
Post # 4
- Wedding: December 2017 - Courthouse
There are definitely varying degrees to how much people hang out with family. During football season, I see my in-laws almost every weekend. Some people would probably think that’s too much.
I agree with PP that the larger issue in this is your Fiance. He needs to have your back and HE needs to be the one to tell his family no and set the boundaries. It’s not fair for you to have to deal with that.
Post # 5
I also have a very small family and my SO has a large, loving family. I think it is important to have a balance between seeing both sides of the family if possible. Although your fiance’s family will become your family when you get married, there need to be some boundaries created. You clearly have an issue with the amount of time being spent with his side of the family and there needs to be a discussion with them or your fiance. You could address how it is making you uncomfortable or that you would like more time alone with your future husband.
Post # 6
Get the behavior with your Fiance figured out before October. Bees can try to tell you what to accept in your relationship. Truth is, you know what is going on best and if it bothers you fix it. Fix it with your Fiance.
Post # 7
- Wedding: March 2021 - Kauai, HI
This sounds stressful bee. I deal with a similar issue. My fiancé is an only child of elderly parents and they are very close. He also has a family friend he sees regularly. I am close to my family too but he has dedicated time with them. Before we were together he visited them every weekend Friday-Monday. When we started dating it became every other weekend As our relationship progressed the weekend away shortened to sat am- sun night. In addition he sees the family friend every Tuesday night and stays over because it’s an hour drive. We did a lot of compromising but I’m mostly happy with it. Sometimes I don’t love it that he’s gone but sometimes I appreciate the time alone and with my kids too. My point is that depending on what he wants his relationship with his family to be, you don’t always have to go too. Find the right balance of time that meets both of your needs. I agree with the PP to make sure he’ll stand up for your plan if needed. Let him tell them who won’t be invited to the wedding. Be wary of marrying someone that constantly bows down to his family. I have an ex husband like that.
Post # 8
Thank you for the responses here.
@futuremrs2020: I have had several discussions with him about it, and he always says he will put his foot down. But it has yet to happen. And totally understand it isn’t a competition, but when you agree to keep something small and suddendly one person invites 40 and the other 10–the person inviting 40 isn’t really being fair, close family or not, you can shave some people off. I do feel strongly the day is about him and I and not everyone else which is why I want it small. And we want to save as much $$ as possible.
@radiancebee-Yes for sure they will be my family. And boundaries need to be set. I would like an understanding family that gets him and I and our family will always come first–so if we don’t see them for awhile it shouldn’t be something we have to walk on eggshells for the time. It might be easier if his brother/sister had significant others and understood why couple time is important. Honestly I think his family dynamic is a little too close given their ages and reliance on each other. When I first started dating my SO he was living with his mom and brother in a very small space. Looking back it seems a little odd for men in their late 30s to do that. And it could be my personal bias as I am very independent so always made living on my own a priority. But I think there are jokes about guys living with their moms for a reason…
@lemonsandlife71 Well said and you are absolutely right. The fact that this is starting to bother me is something that definitely needs to be addressed. And now. I’ve asked him again to please stand up for what we want wedding wise and be firm when needed. I hope he is able to.
@sharkey38 Well said. You are so right about finding balance. I just have to see if he is going to listen to my needs as I listen to his. And I am SO weary about a man who gets walked all over by his family. I have seen that dynamic in action and I can guarantee that would lead to my divorcing such a person. I assumed we had found balance, but I feel like now that his family realizes I am going to be his wife they are pushing their boundaries a bit…honestly my SO is the only one in his family with any kind of success so they look to him financially, for life guidance, to save their asses..if my intuition serves me at all I think they realize that my being upgraded to wife will impact that. And I am such a low maintenance girl I really just go with the flow most of the time. I just can’t have family drama because we didn’t see so and so on their schedule…I see that kind of thing growing into an ugly monster. I wouldn’t do that to another adult because I understand LIFE happens.
Thanks bees…wish me luck..