Post # 1
My sister has been seeing her boyfriend for about a year and a half. They met in college and at first they seemed wrapped in each other and very much in love. Then it became apparent that they fought often and made up just as quickly. My sister is young- 20- and she is not good at communication since this is her first real relationship. She will storm out of his apartment before they ever have anything resolved. Then he will take her on vacation to some random island to make it up to her. His parents are absurdly well off and he has some trust fund set up even though he’s still a senior in college. In the past year she’s been to the bahamas, croatia, disney world and the virgin islands. He pays for them after every fight. (I swear I’m not jealous, just gobsmacked.)
He’s always seemed off to me and now I know why. My sister revealed to me that she was trying “to change herself” for him. Because he checked her text messages and read that she’s lied about how many men she’s been with. My sister was a bit of a wild child and has been with a lot of men (as she’s confessed to me.) I tried to tell her that it was wrong to lie but that she should not feel remorse for something that has happened in her past. Or even apologize to him as if she’s somehow wronged him before they even met. She told me that he “forgave” her and that they were working together to make her a better person. She’s also stopped drinking all alchohol since they don’t agree with toxins in their system. Correct me if I’m wrong but this just reeks of emotional abuse
On her 21st birthday they became engaged and my mother is absolutely ecstatic. My father is concerned about her young age but he doesn’t really know much else. The only people that know about the fights and the insecurities are my other sister and I.
They want to start planning a wedding for the summer after she graduates (next year) and another one in India a couple months after (his parents were born there). She’s really excited and can’t stop talking about how beautiful their 4 or 5 kids are going to be. I’m completely torn. I just know that they’ll end up divorced but I don’t want to ruin my sisters’ future happiness if it can work out.
Maybe she needs to make her own mistakes? And get a really really really good prenup?
Post # 2
I think you can have the conversation with her, but ultimately, she is an adult, and she’s going to do what she wants. You can’t protect her from everything, and some people have to get burned before they learn. I completely understand your concerns, and if it would make you feel better to get your feelings out there (but make sure it’s done from a place of love, and that she feels that way about what you have to say) then go for it. It’s totally ok for a sister or loved one to express a few concerns. But you have to realize that ultimately it’s up to her. Maybe she will realize too late and she will end up divorced, but maybe they will figure it out. Who knows? You only have so much power in this situation.
Post # 3
- Wedding: November 2014 - 11/15/14-Vineyard
Wow that sounds like my sister being totally controlled by her hubby. I, too, tried to talk her out of it as did everyone else in my family. He was verbally and emotionally abusive and we all tried to warn her. She didn’t see it and ignored us. We later saw she was being physically abused as well with constant different bruises. She would always come up with some excuse of tripping over the dog, falling down, etc. We knew and we told her. She still denied it. He finally had to be arrested a few times for getting in fights in public before he changed. I still can’t stand him but they have been married 17 years now and have 2 kids and he’s still controlling but not as bad. I really feel she got lucky he changed, as I know that is not always the case or it could be worse.
My point being, you can try and step in, but it might be to no avail. At that age, they think they know everything and those older and wiser, know nothing. Love is blind sometimes. You can try talking to her but she may still just do her thing. At least you can get it out in the open in how you feel, but let her know you still support her decision and love her no matter what.
Post # 4
I think an intervention is in order where there is abuse, but I just dont see that from what you posted. Yes theyre immature and need to figure out how to work through their shit without a passport stamp- but every couple has shit to deal with.
There shouldnt be a need to check up on each other, and no one should be shaming the other for their past- that you should tell her. Make sure her confidence is up and shes truly happy and knows she doesnt need to take shame from anybody. Help her learn her way through this and encourage her to challenge him to wise up as well. Warn her about the seriousness of marriage. Who you pick is just about THE most important decision for your lifes happiness. Get her to open up more about it and have an honest, non judgemental discussion about your concerns.
A stronger hand, or implying shes blinded by the money (which she might be) will likely just alienate her from you and towards him and will be drama drama drama.
Post # 5
princesslettuce14: Wow this is incredibly tough. I was in the same situation with my best friend, said nothing and they are getting divorced a year later. The thing is she was almost 30 so I felt like she was ignoring the red flags for fear of being the dreaded “30 and single”. I felt she was smart and mature enough to make her own decisions, so I kept my mouth shut. I didn’t want to be right, but I was.
However, at 21, you are almost OBLIGATED to help guide her out of this bad decision!! Not to insult your sisters intelligence, but it doesn’t seem like she’s mature enough or had enough life experience yet to make this decision for herself! She’s trying to change for him? That was the ROOT of my friend’s problems with her ex.
Maybe they won’t even make it to the wedding. It doesn’t sound like it.
Post # 6
First of all, I’m sorry your sister is in this situation. It’s so hard to see someone you love making a choice you know will be bad for them in the long run.
I don’t think “talking her out of” getting married will work. It’s confrontational, even if said lovingly, and likely to result in her rebelling and pushing you away. What I think can be effective (but not always) is to start asking her some probing questions when these issues come up. Ask her how certain situations make her feel, for instance. Basically, help her come to her own conclusions. And if she doesn’t, just try to be there for her.
Post # 7
MrsBuesleBee: I think she may be a little blinded, because I think she has these odd gilded fantasies of being a housewife in Greenwich with 5 kids. And my mother is completely encouraging it, which isn’t helping at all. He comes from a culturally conservative family and I’m seriously worried that she will forego a career to stay at home and then end up divorced with no income.
Post # 8
Personally I dont think that not drinking alcohol and sleeping around less is emotionally abusive.. if anything it exposes you less to liver disease and potential Save-The-Date Cards. I know that people always say “you should never change yourself for anyone” but really, this is BS.. everyone changes themselves in some way in a relationship, in order to accommodate the other person, get along better, or even (ideally) to become a better person through the relationship. I think what you might be worried about is that your sister is coerced into something she doesnt want to do, or that her Boyfriend or Best Friend is controlling her somehow (checking her phone sounds sketchy to me). But from what you’re describing the situation just doesn’t seem really dangerous to me.. he could simply be concerned for her well-being. I also know that certain cultures don’t consider it desirable when women have lots of partners.. you mentioned his parents being Indian, maybe that might also be playing into his concern about her previous sexual partners. I think as long as your sister doesn’t feel pressured to conform to something she doesn’t wish to you really can’t interfere with her plans to get married. If it was my sister, I’d offer her my support and my opinion if she asked me for advice, but I would also try and give her potential husband a chance, even if it was only because my sister loved him.
Post # 9
princesslettuce14: Idk.. it sounds more like you are imposing your own beliefs/expectations on to her. If she wants to be a “changed” woman and a future housewife – and that will make her happy – then why bother trying to convince her otherwise. For all you know she will be completely happy in a long marriage. Its her decision and so long as this man isn’t risking her life/hurting her then you need to let her make her own mistakes
Post # 10
mrsjmd124: Because she feels guilt about her past and she thinks that she isn’t good enough for him. He talks down to her and damages her self esteem.
Post # 11
Adding: I don’t think there is anything wrong with being a housewife with 5 kids. Different people have different dreams in life- not everyone wants to be a career-woman. I think as long as your sister makes sure she COULD find a job (by doing a degree/finishing an apprenticeship) if she found herself in need, there is nothing wrong with staying at home and being a mother if that is what she feels would make her happiest in life, and if her potential husband is OK with that, too.
Post # 12
I’m in a similar situation as you.
For me, I know saying something to my sibling would result in destroying our relationship completely – forever, I know this because any time anything even semi-negative came up about my siblings S/O the shit has hit the fan really dramatically/disturbingly. If you think you can get away with saying something to your sister, without causing too much drama/hurt feelings – than do it. Otherwise, just don’t.
She’s an adult and will make whatever decisions she thinks are right, regardless of what you say. Just be there for her, love her for where shes at and support her decisions, its hard but if you have no other option (like me & my family) its just about all you can do.
Post # 13
In my experience, there is no point trying to talk someone out of a bad relationship or decision. They have their mind made up. They only end up digging their heels in deeper and resenting the people trying to talk them out of it. If they ask for advice, give it honestly and kindly, but otherwise (unfortunately) we have to mind our own buisness and let them live their lives and make their own mistakes.
Post # 14
It sounds like there are some cultural differences coming into play here and that your sister is more ok with his culture’s idea of how a woman should be in a marriage and is working towards that goal for the good of their relationship. Whether or not that is a healthy choice for her in the long run? Well, unfortunately I’m not sure there’s much you can do to influence her in that regard. She sounds headstrong and convinced that this is what she wants in life right now. She’s young, it’s easy to be blinded by our visions of a perfect life before we’ve ever had the chance to experience what adult life really is like, I speak from experience… Sure, this may end up being disastrous, but we all have our life’s journey and we all make mistakes and really, we all have to go through this stuff in order to learn and grow as a person. Of course you want to protect her, but she’s an adult now and has to make her own mistakes and potentially learn things about life the hard way.
Post # 15
I think there may be situations where families can step in and try to talk, but I don’t think this situation is one of them. Just because you think it’s wrong doesn’t mean she does and she’s old enough to make her own decisions.