(Closed) Just Engaged…Need Advice About Parents (A Little Long)

posted 9 years ago in Emotional
Post # 3
229 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2018 - Our home and the two acres it sits on

Oh, honey, I’m sorry there’s this little blemish in your happiness.  It sucks.  I’m going to give this advice knowing it’ll be hard to follow (if you choose to, of course): try to let it go.  If it’s normal for them, then — although I completely understand why you would — you can’t really expect them to be different just because you want them to. 

Being engaged makes you have this idea of how things will go, and it almost never works out for anyone.  I thought my girlfriends and I would get together to craft, that my mom and I would have long talks about what it means to be married, that my sister and I would suddenly get along.  But I’m not crafty, my mom and I only have deep discussions when something bad happens, and my sister and I have never gotten along.

It sounds like they were as happy for you as they tend to show, and that everyone else was thrilled!  Try to accept their way of congratulating you, even if the words and the actions weren’t quite as you’d hoped. If they meant well, try to respond as if they’d done it as you’d hoped.

And congratulations!  Sounds like it was a great proposal!

Post # 4
458 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I’m sorry!  I second cheese.  I would try to let it go for now.  Give them a little bit of time to adjust to the idea of you being engaged.  Since you’re an only child, it might be a little bit more difficult for them to rationalize letting you go, even if they aren’t communicating that very well.

Post # 5
229 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2018 - Our home and the two acres it sits on

Oh, I forgot to add: have you read "Emotionally Engaged?"  There’s a whole section on how to deal with your changing relationship with your parents that I think will be helpful to you.

Post # 6
150 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

Oh, I’m so sorry that this got in the way of your engagement bliss. Of course you’re upset, and of course your fiance is hurt. I went through something similar. My mom loved my fiance and wanted us to get married, but when I told her about our engagement, I got a really lukewarm reaction. It was because I was marrying a Caucasian (I’m Asian) and my mom was worried about what my very traditional grandparents would say. She got excited for a little bit, after she saw that my grandparents were fine with it, but now she has been completely uninterested in the details I share. I think you should just do what the other commenters suggested and try to forget about it. Concentrate on those who are excited for you–and let yourself get excited too. If they continue to be less-than-thrilled, then just don’t talk to them about the wedding anymore … but be sure to let them get involved if they do show interest. Parents can get so strange during engagements. I guess we need to remember that it involves a lot of changes for them, too. Good luck and many, many congrats to you and your fiance! 

Post # 7
445 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2007

Oh no…I’m so sorry your parents reacted this way! The same thing happened to my brother and SIL when they told my parents they got engaged. My mom is an extremely controlling person and my dad, though passive, will go along with whatever she says just to make her happy. When my SIL called to tell them, she said, "Great…put my son on the phone." Not exactly the reaction you expect. My mom was very hurt that my brother didn’t let her know that he was thinking of proposing.

Because this is normal for your parents to react this way, I would definitely try not to let it get to you. I know it’s difficult, b/c you want your parents’ approval more than anything, but you said yourself that your mom picks at something whenever you and a guy become serious. So try to let it roll off your back, and definitely enjoy everyone else’s congratulations! The best part is telling everyone, and when everyone sees how excited you are, they will be too! It won’t make you feel better about your parents’ reaction, but it will help to soften the blow when you see how excited everyone else is for you!

Congrats, and welcome to WeddingBee!

Post # 8
1357 posts
Bumble bee

I’m sorry their reaction was a let down! That is such a bummer. But I’m glad to hear that everyone else is very excited for you. I agree with the other comments – try to let it go. I honestly don’t even remember now how everyone reacted. Actually I do – I called my grandma and and told her I was engaged and she said, "To who??" Not like I havent been dating my fiance for years! Sigh. But I digress. I promise the memory will fade. Give them time. As their only child, this is a big thing for them! Keep them involved in the wedding planning. It sounds like he has done all the right things – just keep doing them. He sounds like a great guy! Congrats! Good luck, and welcome to WeddingBee! 🙂

Post # 9
2030 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Parents can react in very strange ways…when my fiance proposed, he called my parents to ask their permission first to be polite. My mom’s response was, "Are you sure? She’s got a lot of health problems, you know." which floored my fiance because A) Um…of course he’s sure! B) That’s really rude! and C) I don’t have "a lot of health problems!" I am healthy as a horse and we have no idea why she would lie about that. When I confronted her about it she was really vague and just said "well sometimes you get stomach aches." Um…yeah, everyone does, and that’s a really bizarre thing to say about your own daughter! Sometimes parents don’t respond in appropriate ways, but don’t let that put a damper on your happiness. You’re engaged! Congratulations!

Post # 10
2205 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

That’s really a big dissapointment, but in time I’m sure they will come around.  Focus on the excitement of all the other important people in your life.  They’ll soon see how happy and excited you are, and hopefully be more supportive.  Try to remind them that they’re gaining a son rather than losing a daughter (and that can manifest in many ways)–maybe spending more time with them to show them that you’re still a family!

As august16bride said, welcome to WeddingBee!  We’re glad to have you here 🙂

Post # 11
2641 posts
Sugar bee

I’m sorry. (Hugs)

I think sometimes it’s hard for parents because a lot of stuff starts sinking in when their kid is getting married.  (Am I old?  Did I raise her right?  Is she ready to get married and be a mom herself?  Someone will call me Grandma?  Do I have to pay for this?…)  We can’t say they were blindsided, as he asked for their blessing first.  But that doesn’t mean they aren’t still experiencing some shock.  Have they met him before this?  It can be hard for family living far away to just meet a SO for the first time, when they’re finding out about the engagement.

Maybe let the hurt feelings die down a little.  Only you can say how you think you should deal with the situatuon.  But I would consider talking to them eventually and ask them what their concerns are.  Maybe you can answer some questions that will make everyone feel a bunch better.


Good Luck!

Post # 12
164 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2007 - Hyatt Lodge, Oak Brook IL

Oh dear! Yes, this totally sucks… but don’t let it get you down! They will come around eventually, especially because you said they they already have a good relationship with your fiance.

When we told my parents about our engagement, they were shocked and speechless (ok, Mr. E didn’t "get their permission" beforehand, which he regrets now) and they did not give us any sort of "congrats". It took them a few months to really get on board with the fact that we were going to get married. In the end they are happy because I am happy. And they loved every single minute of our wedding day!! 

It will get better, honest! 

Post # 13
262 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2009

Well congrats on getting engaged and welcome to wedding bee!  And so sorry that your parents aren’t excited for you.  This is definitely a time when any bee would love to have their parents cheering in the corner and it sucks when loved ones aren’t willing/ able to do that.

I agree with the other fabu bees to try to let this go a bit and give your folks some time to let the news sink in.  Engagement time involves a lot of communication w/ your folks and as you go about your wedding planning, they will start to learn more about your relationship and the strengths you have as a couple.  This is important and can help them feel more at ease about the situation, imho. 

You and your Fiance have every right to feel bummed about this, but just know that you can’t control how your parents or anyone else reacts to this news.  Really try not to let it affect your enjoyment and delight in your engagement! 

Post # 15
296 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2010

I am an only child as well, and my dad also goes along with everything my mom says! My parents kind of struggled with the idea of me "seperating" from them and starting my own family. I think when you are the only one; mothers take it as their "child" is leaving them.  It took some time for my parents to transition into my new identity as part of another family.  I would give them some time to get used to the idea.

Are there any valid reasons your parents may have for not liking your FI? Is there a situation that was perhaps misread?  Maybe after a week or two, I would ask your mother why she seems so reserved about the situation. Maybe this will open up a discussion.

Congratulations!!  Don’t let anything put a damper on this sweet amazing time!  You have your bees here to cheer you on!


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