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Spending time with your SO...

So here's the situation...

FI and I are long distance. I am going home this weekend since my birthday is on Monday (and my parents want to celebrate with me). So, I get to see FI. I just got a text from his brother saying, "So I decided you get Jeff Saturday and I get him Sunday. End of story!"

Now I only get to see him SOME weekends (a few weekends per month.. at most), and so I plan to spend every day with him when I'm home. Those 4 days per month. FI's brother sees him every day or every other day (they go to the gym together, lead a volleyball team together, go to church together, go to the bar every wednesday together, and watch football every sunday together.). He thinks its unfair that I would want to spend all of Sunday with him. That's the day I planned to celebrate my birthday. I am sick and tired of this. Seriously every single Sunday I am home FI's brother causes a giant fit over why he can't spend the whole day watching football and eating pizza with FI.

Rrrrr. I guess I'm just venting. Maybe I'm totally overreacting. But, I'm a little upset that FI's brother demands the day I was going to celebrate my birthday with FI sitting on the couch watching football.

(this is a post and run because I'm tired and about to go to bed)
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Re: Spending time with your SO...

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    bethsmilesbethsmiles member
    First Anniversary First Comment First Answer 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    Have you talk to your FI about this? It sounds like him and his brother need to have a talk. If his brother sees him everyday he really shouldn't monopolize the limited amount of time you get to spend with him.


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    SopChickSopChick member
    First Comment First Anniversary
    edited December 2011
    I agree with Beth, what does FI say about this? I think it would be fair for him to explain to his brother that he wants to spend time with you while you're home (especially on your birthday) since he doesn't get to see you that often. His brother is being pretty childish if he doesn't understand that.
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    polkadot111polkadot111 member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thanks guys for the input.

    FI said, "Well I'm going to spend time with my brother on Sunday." I'm pissed honestly. At FI and at BIL. I know I shouldn't be this upset, but I am. I really really am. It's my birthday weekend and I wanted to celebrate Sunday since I'm leaving to come back to school Sunday night. Now evidently he's watching football with his brother that day. I'm so incredibly frustrated.

    And yaga, yes I am getting worried about what will happen when we're married. I wonder if BIL is going to be calling up constantly wanting to spend time with FI and wont hear no as an answer. And I'll be the 'bad one' again because I want to spend time with FI.

    It's hard being LD. :(
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    bethsmilesbethsmiles member
    First Anniversary First Comment First Answer 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    **Hugs** I remember how hard LD is and I would've been pissed too if BF had given up limited time with me for his brother. It sounds like at some point (maybe not this weekend) you are going to have to have a talk with your FI about how you are feeling.


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    jorja86jorja86 member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I think this is more an issue of your FI respecting your wishes, and if football is important to him, working out an acceptable compromise. It's easy to blame it on his brother (and I'm not saying he's totally blame free), but this wouldn't be an issue if your FI had made it clear he was spending the weekend with you. Don't get me wrong, I would be upset too. I think it's a little unreasonable for your FI to want to spend an entire day apart when it's one of two days you have to see each other. However, I think you need to focus on getting on the same page with him as far as priorities when you're in town. Then he needs to deal with his brother.
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    desertsundesertsun member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    Yup, this about your FI, not anyone else.

    YOU should always come first with your FI.

    Period. End of story.




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    bethsmilesbethsmiles member
    First Anniversary First Comment First Answer 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    I agree with jorja that this is more of a FI issue than an issue with his brother (even though it sounds like he is being really childish).


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    zipis1zipis1 member
    5 Love Its Name Dropper First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Honestly, if I were in your shoes I would just tell FI I just wouldn't come out that weekend if he's going to waste my time and money traveling out there only to be ignored like this.

    I'm not saying that's exactly what you should do. I do think that from time to time it would be good to spend some time hanging with your FI and FBIL. But the way you describe this as having gone down grinds my gears, so to speak.

    It sounds like your FI completely disregarded your concerns and feelings, and that's no bueno. Furthermore, if this had been discussed and agreed upon that your birthday would be celebrated together this weekend and he's breaking it, I would be so very hurt and pissed. The game can be recorded and watched with his bro later. Heck. if you're not adverse to the idea you could go to a sports bar and watch it too. You are more important.

    Honestly, this kind of behavior if a red flag to me. I don't want to say where it is, because it's kind of my secret place, but there's a site I read that's an anonymous confessional for wives. Husbands ignoring their wives for their family, or always putting them first, is a HUGE issue in many marriages. This behavior needs to be addressed sooner rather than later, before he's skipping out on your kid's birthday parties or leaving you with the flu and a screaming infant to hang with BIL.

    I'm not saying he shouldn't ever get to hang with his bro, but there's a line and IMO he's crossing it.

    Edit: I was tired and cranky when I wrote this, and while a lot of this still stands, I realized that somehow I got the impression that he does this all the time even though I don't see you saying anywhere that this happens routinely. If this is a one time deal, or at least very rare, I would still be pissed but not as concerned this is going to be a lifelong problem.

    But his dismissal of your feelings is definitely concerning. Next time you're able (usually I would say do this in person, but in a LDR that could be harder. So at least on the phone or on Skype probably), sit him down and definitely explain to him that this hurt you and why, and that such behavior is unacceptable (or something. I'm still tired and cranky so I can't tell how harsh I am or am not being). This has the potential to be a habit that will not only drive you nuts but make you miserable as the years go by.

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    ravenrayravenray member
    5 Love Its Name Dropper First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011

    I see this as a problem with your FI and your FBIL.  But with you FI most of all.  Yes your FI should have guy time but that doesn't mean he get to ignore you or how you feel.  It's the day you want to spend with him for you birthday for crying out loud!  Did you explain this to him?  How is your communication?  I think you might want to have a talk about expectations.  Sounds like you guys are on two different pages.  Being in a LRD is tough!  *hugs* 

    "Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person's ultimate good as far as it can be obtained"-C.S. Lewis

    Married! May 27th, 2012

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    edited December 2011
    I'm not LD with BF, but his older brother does demand a lot of his time.  Every time we both have a weekend off and can actually go do something, his brother wants them to go skiing in the mountains (which I don't have the skill to do).  It drives me crazy, especially when it was rare to get a day off together.  We actually are both working at the same resort this winter so it won't be as big of a problem.

    I'd mention it to your FI, or at least have a discussion about it.  Let him know why it upsets you.  I've told BF before that yes, his brother is very important and I understand that but if we've had plans for awhile he needs to stand up to his brother and say no.  

    Its been worse since his brother broke up with his GF so he's just really lonely.  I don't mind them hanging out a lot, and I love his brother like family, but sometimes it drives me nuts when I feel like I come in 2nd place.

    Happy early birthday though!  *hugs*  I hope you end up having an awesome weekend.
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    kellyt89kellyt89 member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I agree with zips and I don't think she's being harsh. If I were in your position I'd be really angry and I'd probably say I wasn't coming that weekend and I'd do something with my girl friends for the weekend. I know how much time and money it takes to visit someone who you're LD with (especially for YOUR birthday) and I think he's completely discounting your feelings. If you lived right there, a football game would be one thing, but you don't.

    Also, this is a FI problem, not a FBIL problem. You're always going to have people that are trying to take up your time as individuals and as a couple and both people need to know how to draw the line. You're his FI, you're the priority.
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    DanieKADanieKA member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I'm sorry you're going through this. I agree with Zipis as well. It's not so much the fact that it's your birthday that's bothering me, but the fact that you are his fiance and he is putting you second for something like a regular sunday of football. This isn't a special occasion. This isn't the super bowl. His brother didn't just come back from war!

    Family is very important. It's great that your FI and his brother are close. But once you become his FI and then his wife, he needs to start putting you first. Period. End of story. Especially if you guys don't see each other every day, and he and his brother do. 

    Hope you guys can work this out. Hugs!
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    Stina51286Stina51286 member
    5 Love Its First Anniversary First Comment Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    Please don't tell me he's a Viqueens fan!! ok im sorry jk.

    Id be upset too esp since you're driving to come home and you don't see him much. I'd try having another talk with FI and see if you can compromise on something where you guys spend some time together that day.

    My birthday is spent with all the mother's in the family every year Yell

     

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    polkadot111polkadot111 member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thanks for the advice! Sorry it took me so long to get back to you- I had class.

    Anyways, yes I am so pissed. I think he is being ridiculous and I really feel like I'm being put second with this. And, this happens every weekend I am home it seems. He just doesn't get it (either does his brother). I've explained to him MANY times and talked to him about this numerous times. Seriously I'm done with it.

    I think I'm going to tell him later, "If you want to hang out with your brother instead of me all day Sunday, then I'm not going to waste my time sitting around waiting to see you. I'm going to make super awesome plans too."  I'm still going home because my I promised my mother I would so we could go out to lunch together for my birthday one of the days, but I'm going to make some extra fun plans with some of my friends at home. If he can't figure this out, then we'll cross that bridge. This is so stupid. I just wish he understood how dumb and unfiar this is. And what gets me the most is that he didn't even ask me what I wanted to do for my birthday, nope. Just said he's going to hang out with his brother on Sunday and watch football. Hmmm... Rrrrr!! I'm way too livid. I shouuld probably calm down before I even attempt to speak to him!

    Frown
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    csousa1csousa1 member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_spending-time?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:136Discussion:0a010cab-0481-48ad-83ed-7d223f39ce86Post:b5d6f54e-cbed-4ffb-987c-93f42fce9640">Re: Spending time with your SO...</a>:
    [QUOTE]Yup, this about your FI, not anyone else. YOU should always come first with your FI. Period. End of story.
    Posted by desertsun[/QUOTE]

    Verbatim. That doesn't mean he always should put <strong>everyone</strong> else aside and only <strong>ever</strong> spend time with you, but when you only get 4 days a month with him? On your BIRTHDAY weekend? Yea, you unequivocally come first there. I'd be ripped.
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    lunarsongbirdlunarsongbird member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Would you ever be interested in watching football with him if it's that super important to him?

    And would he consider DVRing the game?
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    heyimbrenheyimbren member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Hope, I sympathize. I really, really do.

    One of the main reasons I broke up with J was that he just couldn't (WOULDN'T) make time for me and we were LD.

    Little story: one time BF was supposed to come over and 15 minutes before he was supposed to pick me up, he called me. he was at his friend's house and he wanted to know if I would be really upset at him if he went to a Toronto Maple Leafs game that night (against the Montreal Canadiens - HIS team) in Toronto that night and cancelled. and I was TICKED. He did end up coming over, and missed the game after all.

    Now, here's the thing: if this had only happened ONCE I wouldn't have cared at all. Because that's a HUGE opportunity and really exciting experience for him because he's such a Habs fan and Leafs games are REALLY hard to get tickets for.

    But the reason I was mad was because this wasn't the first or one of a handful of times. It was consistent, and I was sick of it. And you know what? As much as I tried to talk to him and explain why it bothered me and that I wanted more attention and time, he didn't get it and he couldn't do that for me. So I drew my line and left.

    So I would definitely make some awesome, exciting plans with other friends. But let him know that you two should really talk about this, and come up with a compromise or way to deal with things- and explain why it bothers you.
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    polkadot111polkadot111 member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_spending-time?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:136Discussion:0a010cab-0481-48ad-83ed-7d223f39ce86Post:3c2474a6-d63d-402b-90b2-fe1230034678">Re: Spending time with your SO...</a>:
    [QUOTE]Would you ever be interested in watching football with him if it's that super important to him? And would he consider DVRing the game?
    Posted by lunarsongbird[/QUOTE]

    Thanks for all of the great advice and life stories. Seriously is helpful and means a lot. I'm thinking about it all and deciding what to do/discuss with him this weekend.

    He doesn't have DVR, so can't do that. It's more of a planned time every Sunday with his brother, not the actual football I don't think.
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    lunarsongbirdlunarsongbird member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_spending-time?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:136Discussion:0a010cab-0481-48ad-83ed-7d223f39ce86Post:48793734-0c5b-4a4d-bc9a-bda3f1271b37">Re: Spending time with your SO...</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Spending time with your SO... : Thanks for all of the great advice and life stories. Seriously is helpful and means a lot. I'm thinking about it all and deciding what to do/discuss with him this weekend. He doesn't have DVR, so can't do that. It's more of a planned time every Sunday with his brother, not the actual football I don't think.
    Posted by polkadot111[/QUOTE]

    What would happen if you offered to make them lunch?
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    polkadot111polkadot111 member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_spending-time?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:136Discussion:0a010cab-0481-48ad-83ed-7d223f39ce86Post:60bfd10f-13f3-47bc-bae7-18374dca504f">Re: Spending time with your SO...</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Spending time with your SO... : What would happen if you offered to make them lunch?
    Posted by lunarsongbird[/QUOTE]

    I suppose this could work. But then I feel like I'm just saying it's okay and totally fine with me to not celebrate my birthday with my fiance and instead cook for them while they watch football. I'd rather go celebrate with my friends if I'm going to be second place like that.
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    polkadot111polkadot111 member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    So, what is a good solution?

    Am I off base if I tell him that he needs to run things by me before he just tells me what's happening? And if I suggest that he tells his brother that when I am home he cannot hang out with him all day Sunday unless Hope joins us (but not this weekend because it's her birthday)? The issue is that I don't want to force him to hang out with me Sunday since that is just horribly mean I think and I know I'll feel so guilty if I force him to hang out with me.

    Gosh dangit. I don't think I should even be having this issue with a fiance. He should just want to hang out with me over my birthday weekend and should have had the respect to call me and ask how I wanted to spend Sunday before he asked me about his thing with his brother.... Rrrr.
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    edited December 2011
    has this consistently been a problem, since you first started dating?  or is it a relatively new thing?
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    edited December 2011
    Maybe I just don't understand sibling dynamics like that..my sister and I..FI and his siblings don't hang out on a regular basis..but that sounds super bizarre. You are his FI, and IMO you should trump his brother in this situation. His brother sounds kind of immature. I would just let FI handle this one if I were you.

    ETA: I guess I should have read the responses/your replies before I answered because I have a lot more to say. I agree completely with Zipis and Desert. When I read your OP I thought you were just saying that your FI's brother wants to hang out Sunday, but now that I see that your FI does at well I change my mind. I absolutely agree that it needs to be addressed. I normally agree with Lunar's advice, but I have to disagree on the making lunch thing. It is YOUR birthday and he should be making you lunch if anything. I honestly wouldn't compromise to that extent if it were me. Not that it is childish, but because it is basically telling FI it is okay for him to go off and spend time with his brother when it is your birthday. I would absolutely be refusing to waste my time going up there as well. I definitely think you and your FI should have a long talk about the issue, especially for what it will be like after you are married.
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    jemmini6jemmini6 member
    5 Love Its Name Dropper First Comment First Anniversary
    edited December 2011
    I'm sorry you are dealing with this polka, I'm pissed at your FI for you.  I mean, it it were a random weekend, it's still a problem that he always does this, but even more so that it's your freaking birthday and he doesn't even care.  Not like you should expect some extravagent plan every birthday, but at the very least, I fully expect that H would choose to spend my birthday with me than watching a regular football game.

    In the short term, I would let him know that you are pissed and will be spending the entire weekend you are down with your parents and friends.  IF he cares to see you at all, then you can let him know what your plans are on Sunday.  I'd also let him know that you think this is a major issue in your relationship and you want to have a serious discussion about it, after you've calmed down, but before you get married.  I'd also highly suggest pre-marital counseling.  It's a good idea anyways, but I think would be really beneficial to you guys since he doesn't even recognize that this is a problem.
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    edited December 2011
    Everything I wanted to say has pretty much been said. It's very immature and childish for your FBIL to expect his brother (YOUR FI) to spend the whole day with only him, let alone have the gall to tell YOU that that's the way it is, end of story.

    Is FBIL engaged/married? If he's not (which is what I would assume), is he still going to do the same thing with her? If not, why not, since he expects your FI to do it to you. This is where your FI needs to step in. It's HIS family, and you're about to be a part of HIS family, he needs to start treating you like it.
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    doubleSS07doubleSS07 member
    5 Love Its First Anniversary Name Dropper First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Oh my I feel so bad for you.  What a sucky situation to be in the middle of.  I would be completely pissed off if my BF did this let alone my FI.  It sounds like if he's done this in the past and gotten away with it chances are he'd rather deal with you and your anger than deal with his brother. 

    When we were LD in the beginning he'd wait till the last minute and then "ask" me if he could go out even though I was coming up to visit.  Of course if i said no I was the biitch who never wanted him to hang with his buddies.  I finally told him look I don't care if you go out but you need to let me know so that I can make alternate plans too because I'm not about to be sitting around while you are out having fun.  My BF and I communicate like Yaga posted above.  We always ask each other if there are things that we'd like or need to do during our free time and I would NEVER think to TELL him what he can or can't do or who he can spend time with.  He is a big football fan as well and IF there was an important game for him I'd compromise with watching that one but not planning to see you at all especially on a B-day that would not fly with me!

    Did you guys have plans to go out or do anything on Saturday at all?  Can you appeal to the brother and just say look I know you guys have your Sunday thing you do but its my birthday and I miss my FI and that you'd never ask him to not spend time with him on HIS bday? 

    In any case you will definitely have to sit down and communicate with him that this isn't going to work and that the two of you need to discuss and most importantly agree on a way to navigate these sorts of situations.  Make sure to not let the conversation get away from you and it ends up being about his brother because like PP's said this is not about the brother per se. I think sometimes we focus on the wrong problem and it becomes about something else entirely and we never seem to get the outcome we are looking for. 


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    polkadot111polkadot111 member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Yay! More advice. Thanks ladies. Yes, I think I am going to just spend the time with my family and tell him that if he wants to see me then so be it. But, that includes Sunday when I would like to go do something fun in the afternoon. I am going to go tour some old historic homes with my mom and sister on Saturday, which will be fun. I'm just going to fill my weekend with other things.

    Yes, we've done premarital counseling. But this didn't even come up since it wasn't an issue then.

    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_spending-time?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:136Discussion:0a010cab-0481-48ad-83ed-7d223f39ce86Post:cbe2014a-322f-4f2f-8f46-b63e34c90aed">Re: Spending time with your SO...</a>:
    [QUOTE]has this consistently been a problem, since you first started dating?  or is it a relatively new thing?
    Posted by CocoBellaF[/QUOTE]
    It's a new-ish thing. He moved out of his parents house a little over a year ago now (he lived there for a summer after he graduated college). His brother lived in the house too with the parents (and still does. His brother is 21 and not married or engaged). when they lived together in the same house they would see each other all the time, so they really wouldn't plan to spend time together. Now though, they actually PLAN to spend all sorts of time together. So, I suppose this is a new-ish issue which began mostly this summer.
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    desertsundesertsun member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    I mean, it's great that your FI and his brother have such a great friendship. That is a wonderful thing in general. It's an issue now however b/c it is impacting your relationship with your FI. 

    Can you tell your FI something like this: "I love that you guys are friends and I don't have a right to tell you what you can and cannot do. But I strongly feel that for a married couple, the other person should always come first. Their relationship should be the most important thing in both their lives. I feel like you don't value me or our relationship when you make plans with your brother instead of with me. If you and I don't share this value, I think we need to re-evaluate our relationship."

    I am sorry to be such a downer. But in my mind, this IS a deal-breaker. You should feel like you and your marriage ALWAYS come first to your SO. And maybe he just needs to realize just how important this is to you and what message his behavior is sending.

    It's not about making him check in with you before he makes plans. It's about him wanting to do so, and doing so without resentment. 

    It's about him behaving as though he respects and values you and your relationship.




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    polkadot111polkadot111 member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thanks Desert. Yeah I agree. This is a big huge red flag waving around like crazy. I am reevaluating our relationship. Better to do it now then to realize in a few years that "o crap. he doesn't want to spend time with me EVER!" I'm going to see how this weekend pans out. Oftentimes once we start talking I'll back down because I'll tell myself that I'm in the wrong just to end the fight, but this really can't be handled like that this time. I'm not going to let him convince me that I'm wrong- because I know I am not. Not with this. Honestly if the conversation goes badly and he ends up spending time with his brother Sunday and being disrespectful, then forget it. Something gotta give.
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    polkadot111polkadot111 member
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Now he just told me that I turn my birthday into a whole weekend of a sanctified holiday. Gah.
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