Post # 1
My recent fiance is a great guy. Smart, athletic, kind, very popular, very handsome. He went to a very respectable school and he’s going to be a lawyer. His dad and brothers are all all-stars in their own right — his dad is a managing partner at a very large and respectable law firm and an Ivy League grad; his brothers? One is an Ivy League grad and doctor (M.D.) and one is a military pilot.
He loves me, but I never feel good enough for him. I feel his dad doesn’t really approve of me, either, despite my Fiance reassuring me that’s not the case.
I’m a hometown girl. I didn’t go to a great school; I was the first of my family to go to and graduate college. I didn’t make great choices with my education or studies and although I did well, I graduated with a degree for which there isn’t a real line of work (Environmental Studies) and I have a lot of debt. He knows all of this. I got a receptionist job at a major for-profit university and remedied my situation by taking advantage of tuition reimbursement through my work, and earning my Master’s degree in Management. I am now the assistant to the president where I work and I make considerable money.
I’m happy with what I do, and think my story is very much a “pull myself up from my bootstraps” kind of story. However, my profession doesn’t seem to garner a lot of respect, neither do my “credentials” — where I got my degrees — to his dad. People assume I am a secretary and I always end up having to defend my place of work, which is a respectable place, not a monster of a corporation that preys on the poor…
I keep feeling like my Fiance is just too good for me and deserves a woman who is equally as “credentialed”. I am smart and can keep up with him intellectually, I just always feel like down the road he might change his mind and realize he could have done better.
Does anyone deal with anything like this? How do you move on? I’ve never had self-esteem issues before him. I am hurt, but I don’t like to show him that I’m hurt over this too often, because I’m afraid it looks like I am very insecure. I am feeling insecure, but I am not an insecure person.
Post # 2
Aw Bee I’m sorry you feel this way. There is so much more to a person’s ‘worth’ other than what school they went to, so don’t downplay all your other amazing qualities thinking they are less important. Kindness, genorisity, high morals/ethics, good communicator, patience, excellent listener etc are all contribute to lasting/loving relationships more so than a piece of paper with a fancy seal on it!
Post # 3
Don’t let this become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Apparently your fiance has different values and priorities than his family. Chances are, once they spend time with you and see what he fell in love with, they will come to appreciate you more too. In the meantime, if you don’t value yourself and are acting “unworthy” of him, he might pick up on that and subconsiously start to agree with you! Money and education don’t make someone a good person. Your fiance sees that and I hope you can too. Best wishes.
Post # 4
The final step in pulling yourself up by your bootstraps is ditching the insecurity. Trust your Fiance to be who he has shown himself to be. Trust yourself to be able to go on with your life without living or dying based on how your father in law feels about your career. You feel the need to control his perception of you because of your insecurity. Once you ditch the latter you’ll be freed of the former.
Good luck, and congratulations!
Post # 5
You need to know your worth, which is NOT determined what college you went to. People like this are infuriating to me. What about those who didnt go to college, some of them I guarentee make more money than your FIs father. He will pick up on your insecurities so please know that he picked you for more than the college u went to!
Post # 6
I understand why you’re feeling that way and I don’t think it’s insecurity. The fact of the matter is certain types of people out a lot of emphasis on marrying money or a name. If his family is like that, and it sounds like they could be, nothing will change that. They’re not going to fall in love with you because you’re great for their son. The value system is different. They were taught that it’s not about love.
so my suggestion is to get tough. Assess your relationship because this is a major difference in background, make sure your Fiance wants what you want. (It seems like he does, but I think you should have a frank, open discussion and don’t let anyone tell you you are being insecure, you’re not. You’re being honest.)
if you’re on the same page, then get tough in your head toward his parents. You can earn their respect over time but don’t expect them to value love the way you and your Fiance do. It’s a different world, and that’s okay. But their values are not YOUR values, and I mean you and your Fiance.
facing the truth is freeing. good luck, bee.
Post # 7
At the end of the day, we all do the same things…we eat, sleep, love, fight, etc. why would a person that went to a prestigious school do any of that better? And if his father uses that as an excuse to look down on you, if you had the credentials, he would find something else!
I did not make it through college, don’t even have an associates degree and, dear, the fact that you have a degree and a MASTERS? I’m intimidated by YOU!!!
The woman with the the fancy education is still going to go through all the ups and downs of life, make dinner, having a baby, get married, etc. Cry and go through sleep deprivation when her baby wont sleep, burn a dinner or two, etc…get the picture?
We all have insecurities. Take control because we care more about what we worry ourselves about, than anyone else ever will.
Post # 8
A person isn’t defined by school/work/amount of money. (By the way, there are unbelievable smart people who never could get education, and there are people with very long lists of career achievements in CV but it is only on paper and there is nothing in their head.) Your fiance chose you, he loves you and this is what matters.
When you start feeling like you are inferior, try to think which are your talents. Every person has some! There can be many things, not only those which are related to career. Something that you are good at – cooking, dancing, ability to understand others… Make a list of your successes, even if they seem small to you. Master’s degree is a great achievement. Good job is also a great one. Remember this and don’t compare you with anyone, you have your own things to be proud of.
I had a similar situation with my ex and honestly, it was one of the reasons why we broke up. He was so smart and bright person, famous in research, and always in the center of attention, and I was shy and depressed because of problems with my work at that time. I was admiring him at highest level and always felt inferior, and this was my big mistake. I should have realized my own value instead of trying to compare myself with him and wishing to be as “great” as he is. Don’t make this mistake in your case. Be proud of who you are! (And when people see this, they will respect you, because everything is about how you show yourself). Good luck Bee!
Post # 9
What about your values? Are they inferior to his family’s? Your personality? As for academic success, I’m all about distance travelled, of course I’m impressed by good degrees from the best universities, but I’m most impressed by people like you and my husband, who succeed without the massive advantages of people born into families like your fiance’s. You cannot be a doctor, military pilot or good lawyer without intelligence and application so all credit to them, but I presume they went through the whole pre-prep, prep, top school thing and grew up with the presumption of success and every means possible to achieve it.
Really battle against feeling inferior and particularly letting it show, I’m afraid people will often take you at your own valuation. One of the greatest gifts of a private education and privileged upbringing is the easy confidence that it usually confers. Mimic that until you really feel it!
Never apologise for your job or college background and never avoid it. Be proud of your current role and achievements. If they don’t understand what you do, talk about it sometimes, particularly more interesting snippets, so they get an idea and don’t think you’re making tea and doing the photocopying for the boss.
We all like to think we won the prize, please DON’T communicate to your fiancé that he’s doing you a favour. I’m sure you are fabulous, he must too to ask you to marry him. Whatever you do, don’t chip away at that.
Post # 10
Environmental studies is SOOOO important. Don’t let his parents get you down because they are narrow minded and think you must go to an ivy league school and be either a doctor or a lawyer to succeed. That’s BS.
In your position, you have real power to make a difference in the world. You can influence your university towards sustainability in practice and in philosophy, and thus impart that on thousands of grads as an important value. The world needs more people like you, exactly where you are – in a place where you can quietly help make a difference. And, no offense, not every lawyer is Amal Clooney – smart, successful and driven towards human rights or making the world a better place. I think you probably have his family beat in that regard, if they think all it takes for them to be worth something is to “be an ivy league lawyer.”
Post # 11
You are basing your self worth on such pointless things, if you don’t mind me saying so But seriously, who caaaares where he went to school?! It is such a petty, bourgeois, inconsequential thing that ultimately means nothing to the rest of the world.
Does your Fiance make you feel inadequate? This sounds like your feelings of inadequacy have arisen from things he or his family has said, particularly his father. It isn’t OK for them to look down their nose at you just because you don’t fit their narrow, snobbish principles.
You sound smart, driven and like you have worked damn hard to make something of yourself. You need to talk to your Fiance. He has to stick up for you if his dad is being an asshole, and to be honest, it sounds like he hasn’t stood up for you thus far, nor has he given you adequate reassurance that you ARE good enough…because you are!!!!!!! Good luck, sweetie.
Post # 12
It is HIS job to put his family in their place. If he/you hear them putting you down or saying that they are “too good” for you, then it is his job to shut that down. If he isn’t, he needs to start doing that, stat.
I wonder also why YOU think you’re not good enough? I mean I don’t even know you and I’m proud of your accomplishments! How does he make you feel? Do you feel special and loved? Is he proud of you? Does he support you? I find it interesting that the qualities you list for him are “very handsome” “very popular” “athletic” and “kind”. That’s SUPER generic…I mean I’m sure he has other great qualities, but if he isn’t supporting you and he isn’t showing you he is proud of you that’s a pretty big issue. Listen to your gut as to how he makes you feel about yourself.
Post # 13
Are you a good person? Do you treat him well? Do you make him happy? These are the things that will make you “good enough” for him, not what school you went to or where you work. Also, you say that you feel his dad doesn’t approve of you but your Fiance reassures you that this is not the case. Are you sure this is not all in your head?
Post # 14
It sounds like your feelings are all yours, not your fiancée. He seems very proud to call you his fiancée. Perhaps the same is true with his dad. Perhaps you feel lile your job makes you inferior so you think others feel it too, when maybe no one is thinking that but you.
It my many years since college and being out on the working world, one thing I have certainly learned is it is not ones job title that makes them liked or makes them a good person. It’s how they treat others, doesn’t matter if the name behind their title is CEO or receptionist.
You dont have to be a doctor or a lawyer to be respected by others. What matters far more in this world, is how you treat others. That is what people remember. And it sounds like you have worked very hard and moved up the ladder in your career. Congrats! and Congrats on your engagement. I think the best relationships are the ones where both people think “wow I am so lucky to have him/her. How did I get this lucky”. Sounds like you both think that.
Post # 15
Wow. His family sounds like young kennedys lol crazy. That’s awesome you have such a great guy! I just wanted to chime in that I’m so jelly of your major, I should have done environmental studies… I want to be a park ranger so bad. Lol in my opinion you are badass!