- 6 years ago
- Wedding: August 2013
I just need some help on this, it’s been a huge stress. I’ve read a lot about his online and just needed to put my situation out there. When I first started dating my husband (we dated for 5 years before we were married), I called his dad by his first name and his dad corrected me right away to call him Mr. ‘last name’. I didn’t have a huge issue calling them Mr. and Mrs. but I think it put a wall up on our relationship right away. It was definately a formality I was not used to; it took a while to adjust to. They have been the only adults in my life I have called Mr. and Mrs. (aside from teachers growing up).
When we got married my Mother-In-Law asked me to call them ‘mom’ and ‘dad’. It was a strange request to go from Mr. and Mrs. to mom and dad. Truthfully, I’m not comfortable calling anyone other than my own parents mom and dad…so I was honest with my inlaws. I told them I couldn’t because mom and dad are very special words to me and those words are reserved for my mom and dad. I could tell my Mother-In-Law wasn’t happy, but she didn’t say anything and went along with it..so I thought it was all ok.
I thought I could ease them into first names, but when I addressed them by first name or email, my Mother-In-Law will now make comments under her breath or she has called up my husband asking why I’m not calling them mom and dad. My Mother-In-Law is very passive and not used to getting her way, so there has definately been tension. I don’t want them to think I’m being disrespectful, that is not my intention at all, but now I’m starting to feel disrespected because I was very honest with how I feel about it. My husband has been, for the most part, supportive about it as well (he doesn’t know why his mom is pushing it so much).
Now I feel like I’m being forced to call her mom. My inlaws are sweet people. They’ve never been mean to me, but I have never been close to them either. It is impossible to get to know them. Everytime we go to their home my Mother-In-Law always stays in her room in bed and my Father-In-Law is working all weekend. They have only visited their son 1 time, besides our wedding, in 3 years, but travel all around the world on cruises, to friends, etc. My husband has a decent relationship with them, but his relationship is much more formal than my relationship (and his) with my parents. I think it does hurt him that they never visit, considering my family has visited twice in a year and they are 12 hours away (his family is 4 hrs away). Anywho, now I’m rambling…All I want is to get to know them as them with their names before leaping into parental nicknames; maybe someday I can do Ma and Pa, but definately not if they are pushing me like this. It almost makes me feel more distant and uncomfortable in their home than before. I have always felt there is a formality that I don’t fit in with, or understand.
Now I don’t call them anything, and I have a feeling it will be that way until we have children, but I’m even nervous about that because she has some of the grandkids calling her mom! Who knew I would be so protective of the title ‘mom’! I’ve always felt that if they didn’t birth you or raise you, then they shouldn’t expect you to call them mom. She shouldn’t have these expectations of me. Has anyone else been in this situation, how did you handle it? Did it ever get better with time? Please help!!!