Problem with the ILs…uncomfortable in their home and creeped out by FIL

posted 3 years ago in Married Life
Post # 62
Member
37 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: September 2017

I think OP sounds completely reasonable and I’m horrified that there are people who think otherwise. 

Post # 63
Member
839 posts
Busy bee

Perhaps a different perspective – other than a hug from my DH, I CAN’T STAND being hugged by another person because I have large breasts. For me, hugging is basically forcing me to press my breasts against another person and it makes me feel uncomfortable, humiliated and I die a little inside every time. Coincidentally, my ‘super sweet’ Father-In-Law tends to linger every time I have to hug him and it makes it worse. The last few times I’ve made myself unavailable for hugging or try a side-hug, Duggar style!

No one should have to endure being touched in any way that makes them uncomfortable, I can’t believe there are people who think women should just ignore it or brush it off as being friendly. Especially when the person doing the touching has been asked to stop, and as OP explained, had a conversation with her DH about how to behave/being appropriate. I can’t help but wonder if there’s a bit of a control issue happening.

 

Post # 64
Member
430 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

There’s a diplomatic way to phrase anything. Personally, I don’t think you should need to. You’re adults, you’re in control of your accomodations, and there is never any reason to stay in a situation if you’re uncomfortable and you have a way out. Just say that you’ve noticed that hosting guests seems to put undue stress on both them and you during a visit that should be a happy and relaxing time and that because of this you’ll stay in a hotel and meet up to do fun things together out in town. This way you’re being considerate, problem solving, and taking care of yourself. You absolutely don’t need to wait for or rely on your husband to take care of you when it comes to his family, but he shouldn’t be so afraid of defending your very reasonable boundaries to his father.

Post # 65
Member
11391 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2015

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hikingbride :  
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Daisy_Mae :  
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DeniseSecunda :  

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RobbieAndJuliahaha :  🙌🏽👏🏼 I can’t even with this thread. Thank you ladies for dragging it out of the 1950s. (There are more bees I’d tag if I could but I can’t tag other pages)

 

Public Service Announcement: Having personal boundaries doesn’t mean you have been sexually assaulted or see all men as would-be rapists ffs. It means you have personal autonomy, dignity and self-respect. 

These are things all women should feel entitled to. 

No one needs to let someone else touch them. Ever. 

Post # 66
Member
1096 posts
Bumble bee

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BalletParker : I’ve seen so many articles to start this while kids are young – that they can wave or high five if they feel more comfortable, and that nobody can hug or touch them unless they are ok with it. I really like this movement to make personal space a normal thing.

Post # 67
Member
9 posts
Newbee

 There is a lot of neurosis about casual touching/hugging among people coming from Anglo-Saxon and North European cultures, for some reason on this continent folks tend to assume the worst about “touchy-huggy” people. Everything is not black and white and there are lots of nuances. I found some of the responses here over the top alarmist. What culture is your Father-In-Law coming from? If it’s difficult for you to speak to your Father-In-Law in person perhaps you can write all of your concerns in a letter and explain the cultural background that you are coming from. Your DH should also be more proactive in resolving this situation.

Post # 68
Member
10546 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

I don’t like to be touched, so I get it.

I’ve actually made a FB post to tell people to stop coming up and touching/rubbing my stomach now that I’m pregnant and people are still doing it. The other night at a get together a family friend came up and immediately wrapped me in a side hug with one arm and started rubbing circles on my stomach with his other hand. Not only did I attempt to squirm away and say no, my father even spoke up and told him I didn’t like having my stomach touched and it still continued it while his wife made passive aggressive remarks all night about how they weren’t “good enough” to touch my stomach or know about my baby. I was willing to give the family friend a pass because I know in his heart he didn’t mean to make me uncomfortable and probably assumed it was a joke but the remarks from his wife put a bee in my britches. 

My answer would be to just say “Oh no FIL! You know I’m not a toucher!” anytime he gets too into your personal space. You don’t have to be mean about it, but hopefully after a few times of you saying it, it will start to stick in his head you don’t like to be touched. 

Post # 71
Member
5780 posts
Bee Keeper

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BalletParker :  “PSA: Having personal boundaries doesn’t mean you have been sexually assaulted or see all men as would-be rapists ffs. It means you have personal autonomy, dignity and self-respect. 

These are things all women should feel entitled to. 

No one needs to let someone else touch them. Ever.”

Very well said. I’m surprised and saddened there is so much controversy in this thread over this. 

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lauralaura123 :  Agreed, children need to be taught this early on, these basic human rights of autonomy most definitely should include children. 

Post # 72
Member
5780 posts
Bee Keeper

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internationalfish :  Dear Sock-puppet, perhaps creating alternate accounts has distracted you from your reading comprehension. This is not culturally related, OP has said more than once that this behaviour toward her is out of character for him (I’ve underlined the key words here to help you out). And your knee-jerk assumption that anyone alarmed by his behaviour must be from a culture that has some kind of ‘neurosis’ (you’ve misused the word here, but the insult behind your intent is pretty clear) about touching. is also wrong. FWIW, both DH and I come from cultures where kissing and hugging as greeting is usual – but not forced or inflicted upon someone who doesn’t want to be kissed or hugged. Does a FIL- who has been told his actions make his DIL uncomfortable- continuing to touch her and give her massages against her wishes truly not send off any warning bells to you, or is this, in fact, solely a reading comprehension thing?? 

 

Post # 73
Member
5780 posts
Bee Keeper

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aae37 :  Your concerns are valid and you sound like a reasonable person, I hope you’ll try having another talk with your DH addressing these concerns, he needs to put your well being ahead of avoidance of family drama. And good for you for planning to teach your children early on their right to personal boundaries. 

 

Post # 74
Member
5780 posts
Bee Keeper

I’d also like to add #6 to my previous list- and it’s an important one, the controversy in this thread has highlighted  this. 

#6. Grey areas and ambiguity allow the predator to get away with his actions because they are subtle, covert and open to interpretation. This type of predator keeps his actions within the grey area so that they can be explained or rationalized as innocent if confronted, so that others- including the recipient of his unwelcome advances!- will be unsure what, if anything, is actually going on. Others, including the recipient, will even question their own perception of events. 

This type of creep knows full well what he’s doing, but uses the cloak of ambiguity to not only get away with it but to gaslight others into doubting the alarm bells going off in their heads. 

It’s also important that we call a predator a predator. Because that’s what he is. He’s aware he’s making OP uncomfortable and either he doesn’t care or he takes pleasure in it, a cat-and-mouse game to him. He’s putting his hands on her after being asked not to. Just because his actions aren’t viewed as ‘extreme’ by some, doesn’t mean he isn’t in the category of predator. Predator isn’t a term reserved exclusively for rapists, there are unfortunately many actions that fall- or should fall- under this term. When you say ‘oh he just…..’ you continue to be part of the problem that allows all of these ‘grey area’ predators to get away with it.

Post # 75
Member
2393 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: NJ

Class, what have we learned from this? Most of us are women, but even so, I would say, look at it from the other side and never touch another person. I won’t anymore, because they may not want to be touched and I would be very embarrassed if I hugged them, to be yelled at or told to keep my pervy hands to myself. So I will choose to be a non-toucher from the get-go. 

I am not even a ‘toucher’ anyway. The only one in the family who is, is my niece. No problems. I hug my 8 year old great-nephew, because he wants to. I guess it is allright if he initiates the hug. It always made me happy that he was so glad to see me, but I have to rethink it.

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