(Closed) HELP PLEASE – my FH’s dad favors his wife over FH, and FH is hurting :(

posted 8 years ago in Family
Post # 3
860 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

That’s a tough situation, and I’m sorry for your Fiance πŸ™

I think you just need to keep doing what you are doing (listening and being supportive).  You could give your Fiance suggestions about how to start a convo with his dad about his concerns.

It doesn’t seem likely that your Future Father-In-Law will change, even if your Fiance talks to him about it (although talking won’t necessarily hurt).  I think at this point, your Fiance needs to work on accepting that his dad is sorta messed up and focus on ways to effectively cope with this as an adult, and ways to have a workable relationship with his father… and the type of relationship he will want his children to have with his father.

Will your Fiance consider counseling?  This must be tough for him, and I think some professional insight would be helpful.  I have some friends that have really screwy relationships with their parents, and counseling has helped them a lot.

Post # 5
1088 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

Hi Gabrielle,

Well, I have one brother and my mom is single, my dad is remarried. My parents have been divorced since I was 5 and both my brother and I are engaged. My brother had some hurt feelinggs towards my dad, he felt like my dad never called enough or made much effort. It seems that since my dad remarried, he’s been busy with his wife – which is understandable. Before he met her, he would always want to hang out with us. Now that he has less time, it seems to be less important. I have no hard feelings for my dad and I don’t expect him to make much more effort than he is right now. On the other hand, my brother is hurt. I think it’s harder when a son isn’t close with his dad (just like we women really need our moms). I talked to my brother a lot about his feelings and he ended up going to lunch with my dad alone and told him exactly how he felt (without worrying about sugar coating anything). My dad heard him and is making more of an effort (they still struggle though). I think it’s an ongoing process – but has to be done with OPEN COMMUNICATION. What good will it do if your FH continues hurting and doesn’t let him know? No matter how close anyone is to other family members, they are still family and should be aware of whatever hurt they’re causing (they might not even know it’s there).

I guess everyone is different and I can’t tell you what you should do, but it might be a good idea for your FH to talk to his dad about it. Maybe he can even say “SM, would you mind if I had a word with my dad alone?” And she mgiht say yes, and she might say no. But I bet even if she says no, him telling his dad how he feels in front of her might even be a good thing. It might cause her to back off and your dad to realize that he neds to make more of an effort with his son. It’s REALLY important though that FH’s dad makes TIME to spend with FH alone. And it’s even MORE important that you continue to be supportive of your FH…maybe you could even have your dad be more involved with him too.

Something as simple as “dad I miss you. Can we go to dinner just me and you” might encourage his dad to do something with him. Or even, “remember when we used to hang out more? I miss that.” etc. Sometimes dads are clueless…lol…trust me…

Good luck girl, I hope everything turns out ok.

Post # 6
10 posts

I’ll try my best to help. My parents split when I was 3. My mom had miscarriage after miscarriage and finally got me. After that she said she was done. She was happy with one child, and couldn’t stand more heartbreak. My dad always wanted a boy. He met my step mom, who claimed to also want lots of little boys. Long story short, my dad left my mom to marry my stepmonster…I mean step mother. He built her a big house and they never had any kids. My dad picked her over the family he had.

My mom was really good about it my whole life. She let me figure out he was a loser all on my own. My dad’s never really been there. Not for softball or gymnastics, nothing. He would buy met birthday gifts like a compound bow, or a drill, really? He’s just my dad. I know what your FH is going through, and it’s hard. It’s impossible to see the situation objectivly. For years I thought I was just a lousy daughter, despite my best efforts to make him proud. He just never noticed. My step mother was pretty horrible to me too, which just makes it worse when your dad doesn’t stand up for you. Then one day, my dad blew off plans with me and my FH (again) because my step mother wasn’t feeling well. My FH called him and walked up one side of him and down the other. I then got multiple emails from my dad and my step mother saying how they had no idea what FH was talking about. In the end I had to just put it all in writing and pluck up the courage to send it to him. I told him everything. He never really acknowledged it, but he’s been better. I got my first hug from him in about 5 years. And as sappy as it sounds, all that anger went away. I had a dad again. Things aren’t “great” but they are better. And when it’s been nothing but crap for 20 years, “better” is pretty damn good πŸ™‚ Like DanielleZara said, dad’s can really be clueless πŸ™‚ He might not even know he is hurting your FH so much. Someone’s gotta tell him. As important as it is to have you FH talk to him, you might have to get the ball rolling. It’s hard when it’s your own dad to have to call him out.

My suggestion is for your FH to write it all down. That way it’s out of his head and on paper. He can go back and delete the really bad stuff that he might regret later and may remember some stuff while re-reading it. It’s harder to talk sometimes than it is to write. The big part will be to get it to his dad. It’ll suck sending that letter, but it needs to be done. Once it’s in the mail, he’ll feel better. Then it will be on his dad. His dad will have all the information and will (hopefully) see it from his son’s point of view. After that it’s up to them to fix the relationship. You’re doing everything you can, which is great! My FH is the only thing that got me through the rough spots. My thoughts are with you!!! Good luck and please let us know how it all turns out!!!

Post # 7
136 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

I am sorry and feel so bad for your FH.  My FH’s parents are currently separated and going through a divorce battle.  My FH’s dad cheated on his wife of 30+ years and is now living with that other woman.  Needless to say, my FH refuses to meet his dad’s new Girlfriend until the divorce is final.  The thing is my FH’s dad wants him to meet her, and until then, is being pretty immature and mean.  My FH’s dad is very absent now, which was never the case before the separation.  He is totally choosing time with his Girlfriend over time with his children – which is painful.  My FH invited his dad to our wedding and his dad “needs to think about since Girlfriend is not invited.”  Needs to think about attending his son’s wedding?!  My FH has cried, has gone to a couple therapy sessions with his mom, and tries his best to cope.  I have tried to cheer him up, take his mind off of it and only offer one piece of advice:

Now, my FH needs to pick-and-choose when he wants to call his dad, be around his dad, and have his dad in his life.  He does not get to be at his dad’s beck and call when he is in town or drops by unannounced.  It’s tough and easier said than done.


Good luck!!  Your FH is clearly learning what not to do as a father.

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