- Ms. Stallion
- 5 years ago
I was hoping to get some much needed advice from you ladies.
Back story – My husband and I have been together for 6 years (married almost 2). Just about 1 year after we started dating, his younger brother began dating an older woman, who I will call “K” (he was 23, she was 28). I realize that 5 years is not a huge age gap, but at that particular time in their lives the difference in maturity was obvious – he was just graduating from college and still living at home with his parents, while she had an established career, owned her own home and was going through a messy divorce. Three months after they started dating, she was pregnant, and just weeks after the pregnancy, they were engaged. Needless to say, things moved very quickly without the family getting a chance to really get to know her, and it was a difficult transition for everyone in my husband’s family.
However, after the shock wore off, everyone was overjoyed with the arrival of the baby and made a genuine effort to welcome K into the family. The trouble was that she brought a lot of drama into a completely drama-free family, made everything more difficult than it needed to be and caused a lot of tension. It was shocking the ways she would blatantly insult and be rude to her in-laws (my husband parents) and while I often disagreed with her behaviour, at that time, I didn’t interfere. I tried to stay neutral and keep out of all the mudslinging. Sometimes it was hard to bite my tongue, but I did. I just focused on being a good auntie to my little nice, her daughter. There were heartbreaking times when she denied her in-laws access to their grandchild as “punishment” and seeing my mother-in-law crying her eyes out brought me to tears. As time, went on, it may have become more obvious that I sympathized with my in-laws and agreed with their positioning on topics, but I never got in the middle of it. It became clearer and clearer that K had some mental health issues and I chalked her behaviour and her poor decision-making skills up to this.
Fast forward to this past summer, there was an incident where she completely and blatantly disrespected me. (the details would make this long post even longer but please trust me that it was INSANE, uncalled for, and totally ridiculous). It was infuriating to me, my husband, my in-laws, my parents, – you get the point. She had crossed the line with me, and at that point my husband and I decided to take a break from her and his brother. We told his brother that we loved him dearly, respect him and his relationship, but needed to step away from the situation. We made it clear that our home is always open, but that we couldn’t put up with this behaviour. At this point, he confessed that he wanted to leave her but was too afraid he would lose his daughter. My husband told him that if he ever needed a place to stay, financial help, advice from a lawyer, etc. that our home and heart are open to him and his daughter. We ended the conversation there. Since then, she has not been allowed to have a relationship with our niece like we had before which has been devastating.
SHOCKER – 1 month later she is pregnant with their second child!!!
Anyway, every time I would see her at family functions, I would politely say hello but would then excuse myself from where she was. She would do the same to me. This has gone on now for 6 months. We don’t go to each other’s homes, and when we are forced into the same room, the tension is so thick, its hard to breathe. I have never had an issue with another woman like this before in my life. Sure, there have been disagreements with friends, but they were always quickly resolved.
For some reason, with the new baby’s due date approaching, I would like to move past this. I do not want us to become close per se, but I want us to be able to have a friendly conversation at family events, remain cordial, show respect for one another. We are married to brothers and if both of our marriages last, we are going to be in each other’s lives for a very long time. So, I sent her a text this morning that read:
Hope you are doing well and feeling good in your last trimester. I’m wondering if you would like to get together for a coffee or tea tonight? Obviously, our relationship has deteriorated since the summer, but I would like to, and thinks its in everyones best interest, if we work it out. Let me know wht you think.
Anyway, she has agreed and now we are meeting for a coffee tonight. So, I need your advice, how can I ensure the conversation goes smoothly and doesn’t get confrontational? I don’t expect an apology for her actions that led to the falling out, but I would like her to know why I was so hurt. Can I explain that or should I only focus on moving forward? I’m nervous and any advice you can give me and language to use would be appreiated. Thank you.