Wedding Woes
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My FH's mother, sisters, & BIL are crazy, and FFIL is no help.

Sorry if this is long, but trust me, there's more than just what's below that I could have told!  I really need to vent and I don't know what advice/support I'm hoping to hear, but please ladies I could use something.  I just finished the book Toxic Inlaws and I think it was helpful, but it's not a substitute for professional help.

FH told FFIL and FMIL he is sick of being treated like a child - FH has worked in the family business for over three years without a true salary, just free rent and money if he asks for it (but he has to ask, like a child).  This means he can't budget or save for himself - he has to ask Daddy if he wants groceries or a vacation.  He's talked to them about it before and they've promised to change, but after a few weeks, they forget to pay him his salary and things go back to how they were.  FH had enough and refused to speak to his parents for a month.  Less than one week into that month, FFIL and FMIL became totally crazed that they couldn't reach FH and called me multiple times a day for days.  During this time, they also had FH's relatives call and text me, even from out of the country!, and FH's aunt came to my apartment building (FFIL and FMIL were out of town).  Not to mention that FFIL, FMIL, and FH's aunt called my parents multiple times as well - like I'm a child too!  I live on my own and support myself and my parents treat me like an adult.  And to pull my parents into this mess!?  FSIL and FSIL's husband tried reaching me, with FSIL's husband texting me that I'm making him look good as a son in law because I'm doing such a terrible job, then leaving me a voicemail telling me I disrespected him and that I should "eat sh*t" because I put FH's parents through this.  Excuse me, but FH asked me not to answer any calls, and it's not me they care about reaching!

Then FMIL and FFIL conspicuously skipped my brother's wedding after having RSVPed yes (they were to be seated at my parents' table so my parents' friends and family who wanted to meet them all noticed).  I had had enough and made FH talk to his parents (and he wanted me there for support).  We went to their home to discuss the issues.  When we got there, FMIL became absolutely hysterical.  FFIL tried to calm her down, or at least get her to stop screaming at us and accusing FH of being a terrible son (which he really isn't - except for this short period, he normally sees them a few times a week and spends 1-2 full weekends with them per month, and calls them on top of that! - it drives me crazy that he spends so much time with them, even).  She would not stop, and blamed me for why they skipped the wedding without even so much as a call - because I didn't call her the day before to personally invite her!  They received an invitation to which they responded they were coming, and I told them a few times that there would be special (and extra expensive) food for them that satisfied their dietary restrictions.  I mean, that is ridiculous, right?  I just can't believe that they did something so public as skip my brother's wedding - to humiliate your son like that, even if you are unhappy with him.  Anyway, FH, FFIL, and I tried to have a calm conversation about how FH wants to work for himself for awhile and not do the family business, and FFIL seemed to respect that.  But again, FMIL was hysterical and would take snippets of conversation and twist them around and throw them back at us to make it sound as if we were the most ungrateful, irresponsible, mean people that ever lived.  FFIL was not mad at all, but could/would do nothing to stop her.

Ever since this hysterical encounter almost a month ago, FH's mother has stayed hysterical.  FFIL is no good - we've gone over there a couple times, and when she starts in on FH (and tries to get me on her side - yeah right) FFIL just leaves.  He seems to take the path of least resistance.  FH wants to spend more time with them, which I just don't get - why reward them for this behavior?  And now, to top it off, the younger FSIL (not married) is home from school for the summer and has to put up with FMIL's craziness and is starting to hate FH and me because she blames us for her mother being so miserable all the time.  The only ones in FH's family that liked me - FH's aunt, FFIL, and younger FSIL - are all no help at all in this situation and are even starting to turn against us.

I am a happy, optimistic person but lately I have been very depressed.  FH has gotten mad at me for being in such a funk but I really can't help it.  We are talking to his religious leader this evening since he has a psychology degree and I hope that he can refer us to a counselor.  We are less than two months from my wedding and I am so depressed and have zero interest in anything wedding related.  I am considering breaking off the engagement - who wants to deal with a family like this for the rest of her life?  I love FH and he loves me, but I'm mature enough to understand that love isn't enough.  I really hope counseling helps, but I have serious doubts.  I don't know what to do.
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Re: My FH's mother, sisters, & BIL are crazy, and FFIL is no help.

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    emerald8emerald8 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    He moved out of his parents' house two years ago (when he was 22), but the family business is real estate.  So he has his own apartment, but it's in one of the buildings his family owns.  He getsto live there free and they don't want him to pay rent even now that he's not working in the business.  I don't get it either.  He doesn't want to move because it's cheaper and he thinks his family would be offended.
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    C&S1030C&S1030 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    What the what?

    I only read the first part so...
    1)  If your FI is not getting paid then he needs to take them to court. 
    2)  Do not marry this guy until he can be a responsible big boy and have a job where he actually gets paid. 
    BabyFetus Ticker BabyFruit Ticker
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    HeffalumpHeffalump member
    First Anniversary First Comment 5 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011

    Zil, I had the exact same question.  Parents or not, if you were working but not getting paid, wouldn't you go find a new job? 

    I am also not grasping why his parents not showing up to your brother's wedding somehow shames your family?  Is this a cultural thing? 

    I would break off the wedding, not because of his family (he can't help that), but because if your description is correct, he has no balls or spine.  Not good husband material.

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    GBCKGBCK member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper First Comment
    edited December 2011

    And your FI is choosing to remain enmeshed rather than move on WHY?

    He can't change them.  He knows that.
    So why the fluck is he trying to change them instead of change him?
    The first day they 'forget' a paycheck, he should be asking--if it's not rectified, he quits.
    He moves into his own place.  If it insults them...well, that's THEIR problem.

    Of course, right up there is the fact that you can't change him either...you, at some point, either have toa ccept that your Fi is enmeshed in an unhealthy family situation and will (okay, may, but realistically, WILL) never set boundries...and either marry into this mess knowing it won't get better or leave the mamma's boy manchild behind.

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    DG1DG1 member
    5 Love Its Name Dropper First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    He's obviously not willing to sever the relationship, so I'd think long and hard before I married into this mess.

    image
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    Butter CookieButter Cookie member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I didn't bother to read this, so I hope this helps.

    In South Africa, termites are often roasted and eaten by the handful, like pretzels or popcorn

    It is illegal to hunt camels in the state of Arizona.

    Oak trees do not have acorns until they are fifty years old or older.

    You lose enough dead skin cells in your lifetime to fill eight five-pound flour bags.

    First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt ate three chocolate-covered garlic balls every morning. Her doctor suggested this to improve her memory.

    Lawn darts are illegal in Canada.
    Image and video hosting by TinyPic
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    HeffalumpHeffalump member
    First Anniversary First Comment 5 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011

    Someone explain to me why it's insulting to move out of a free apartment his family owns, but it's NOT insulting when they expect a grown man to work for, basically, an allowance?

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    ReturnOfKuusReturnOfKuus member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    I too am waiting for that explanation, Heffa.  I'm also waiting for an explanation of why a guy willingly in this situation sounds like a good catch.
    image
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    emerald8emerald8 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011

    I agree on not moving out - I've encouraged him multiple times that we should get our own place and not live there.  Except  that when you only get an allowance, it's pretty much impossible to save the money for a different place.  His solution for the past month and a half has been to shack at my apartment every night.  It's a studio so it's driving me up the wall - I like some alone time!  His place at his parents' building is really sweet - he totally gutted it two years ago and made it really high-end (which the rest of the building is not), but I just figured that I had to be the bigger person and agree to live in the place even though it's much more appropriate as a bachelor pad - there's zero storage in the bathroom, for instance.  We were not together when he planned it so I figured he just should have had a woman's input.  Maybe I'll push harder for getting our own place.  His parents want us to move into their neighborhood!  Over my dead body...

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    emerald8emerald8 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    And about him being a catch....he's good looking, hard-working, smart, great in bed, loyal, respectful, able to cook (though can't remember the last time he did), .... I'm drawing a blank.  Like I said, I am considering breaking off the engagement.  I love him, I'm attached to him, and I have a beautiful ring, but I am pretty unhappy with him right now, and I'm unhappy in general.  His family is horrible, he's overly demanding in terms of religion and my time, and all the stuff I wrote a book about above.

    And Butter Cookie, that was helpful - though I think a chocolate chip cookie would be even better right now Innocent
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    emerald8emerald8 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Although, he did make the step to stop letting them control him - he stopped working for the family.  And he protected me vs. throwing me under the bus like he could have when we talked to FFIL and FMIL.  When we talked to his parents, he told them I encouraged him to call them - he could have said that I pushed him not to call, which would make me look awful in their eyes.  I think that's a big deal.  Right?
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    E SquaredE Squared member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Instead of quoting the text above, I just find it easier to post this.

    http://cedarlounge.files.wordpress.com/2007/10/error_redflag.jpg
    image
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    **O-Face****O-Face** member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment
    edited December 2011
    You mention a lot of material things.  Just sayin'.
    image
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    edited December 2011
    Good in bed, nice ring, and sweet apartment are not good reasons to stay in the relationship. I know you listed other reasons, but those are the ones that jumped out. They don't make for lasting relationships, they're just bonuses. Maybe he didn't throw you under the bus, but he isn't exactly doing much to get out from under mom and dad's thumb.

    And how did he manage to get a nice ring on an allowance?
    MIL is thrilled you're joining the family. Image and video hosting by TinyPic
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    edited December 2011
    I read it all.  And honestly, I'd think long and hard before marrying this person.  FI's family may treat him like a child, but he is allowing it to happen.  He needs to move out of the building his family owns, and get an actual job that will pay him real wages.  He can't just half-a** it...he needs to act like an adult.  But it doesn't sound like he's willing to go all the way with it, and that's what makes him not marriage material.  He asked for real money for working at the family business, but then he's afraid to move out of his family's building so he doesn't upset  them and because it's going to cost him more.  You are getting ready to marry into this dysfunction...think long and hard before going through with it, because once you tie the knot, it'll be a lot harder to get out of it.

    ETA:  Some of those reasons seem surfacy, some don't.  But religion to some degree can be a big deal, and especially the living situation...he's half-a**ing his "independence" from a smothering family.  In addition, you said he's not working for them anymore, but he can't move out since he gets an allowance?  Is he looking for a job...what's the deal on that?
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    emerald8emerald8 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    He has a stash of money that his parents saved up for him when he was young, and his parents paid for half the ring.  I think they would have paid for the whole thing, but he said no.  This family business stuff really weirds me out.  He didn't get paid, but then they paid for half the ring.  It's that kind of thing that gives me the creeps - even if you can get the money you earned by asking for it, how humiliating to have to ask!  Thank goodness my parents and I always understood that when I graduated from college, I'd get a job and my own place.  And thank goodness I was able to do it.  I know that's a bonus.  And happiness is worth more than an expensive ring.  Cheaper to buy myself something pretty and not get divorced later.  But I love him.  Aargh.  I almost hope tonight goes badly so I can just be done.
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    ReturnOfKuusReturnOfKuus member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    Whoa whoa whoa.  Overly demanding in terms of religion and your time?  Please explain.
    image
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    ReturnOfKuusReturnOfKuus member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    And you know, tonight doesn't have to go badly in order for you to be done.  You don't need a "good enough" reason to break up with a guy (though IMO everything here certainly qualifies as a good enough reason).  You can just be done.
    image
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    emerald8emerald8 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I know what I'm about to say might sound bad, but who says the next guy will be better?  My dad's family treats my mom badly, but they've been married for over 30 years and they're happy (except when they're at family events).  He's stood by her, and that's why it's been ok regarding inlaw stuff, even though my mom hates it.  To be fair, she doesn't want me to deal with that crap, and she didn't know in advance that his family would be like they are.  At least FH loves me, wants me to look like the angel, and enjoys spending time with me.  I guess he's not super demanding with my time, but he does like me to be with him.  He likes me to be with him when he hangs out with his friends.  He doesn't like hanging out with my friends though.  We're the same religion, but his family is way more observant.  He isn't right now, but wants me to be.  That is an issue - I tell him I'm not doing anything unless he sets the example.  I'm not going to force him to do something he wants to do and I don't.  That would be stupid.
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    hmonkeyhmonkey member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper First Comment
    edited December 2011


    this is craziness.  run away.

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    ReturnOfKuusReturnOfKuus member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    No guy at all would be better than this load of insanity.  He sounds suspiciously controlling of you in addition to the craziness with his family.  And what's this wanting you to look like the angel?  This is giving me creepy chills.
    image
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    hmonkeyhmonkey member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper First Comment
    edited December 2011

    four men in the world.  nft.

    image
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    ReturnOfKuusReturnOfKuus member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    I need to see a picture, emerald.  This guy must be handsome enough to make the gods envious to put up with all of this.
    image
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    emerald8emerald8 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011

    He uses the word angel.  Basically, he wants me to only say and do things that make me look good in front of his family, and he says that he will take care of the bad things that need to be said or done.  I like to fight my own battles, but this inlaw business is new to me, so that actually sounded pretty nice - to let him take any heat.  That way maybe they wouldn't hate me???  Gotta leave work now, counseling after dinner.

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    ReturnOfKuusReturnOfKuus member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    "Basically, he wants me to only say and do things that make me look good in front of his family"

    This, and he wants you to be more devoutly religious than he is?  My suspicions are confirmed: controlling with a side of misogynistic.  He wants to parade you around as his perfect doll, not actually have you be a whole person.  No one is good looking enough for all of this.
    image
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    edited December 2011
    That situation doesn't sound nice, it sounds creepy and Stepford-ish.

    Tell me, where exactly do you two plan on living when you get married? Is he going to move in with you and have no money to pay bills or is he going to make you live at his family's apartment complex so they don't get offended?
    image
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    GBCKGBCK member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper First Comment
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_wedding-woes_fhs-mother-sisters-bil-crazy-ffil?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:47Discussion:94907587-d7a5-4d02-9bd1-9f3e040b6703Post:dcf22bb5-5b2a-4f15-94df-d477028acb3f">Re: My FH's mother, sisters, & BIL are crazy, and FFIL is no help.</a>:
    [QUOTE]I know what I'm about to say might sound bad, but who says the next guy will be better?  My dad's family treats my mom badly, but they've been married for over 30 years and they're happy (except when they're at family events).  He's stood by her, and that's why it's been ok regarding inlaw stuff, even though my mom hates it.  To be fair, she doesn't want me to deal with that crap, and she didn't know in advance that his family would be like they are.  At least FH loves me, wants me to look like the angel, and enjoys spending time with me.  I guess he's not super demanding with my time, but he does like me to be with him.  He likes me to be with him when he hangs out with his friends.  He doesn't like hanging out with my friends though.  We're the same religion, but his family is way more observant.  He isn't right now, but wants me to be.  That is an issue - I tell him I'm not doing anything unless he sets the example.  I'm not going to force him to do something he wants to do and I don't.  That would be stupid.
    Posted by emerald8[/QUOTE]

    WTF is wrong with you that you even wrote this?
    You need to actually dump his ass (and like kuus said, you don't need a 'good enough' reason to dump him) and learn how to be a whole single person...because you desperately sound like someone who has lean-to relationships w/ men.

    You should marry someone who is 'wrong' because someone else might be more wrong?  Wow.
    The world would be a better place if the fear of someone worse kept people SINGLE instead of making them stay w/ someone who is a looser.

    And you know your parents have a screwed up marriage (and, no, length of marriage has nothing to do w/ how 'successful' a marriage is) and you're still using THAT for your basis in life?
    And, youi may be 'putting your foot down' re: hanging w/ friends, following religion, etc...but you know his attitude on it is mysognistic and assy--and that attitude is remaining, his beliefs haven't changed...he just happens to be not throwing a fit about it right now...but he's still hoarding those assy beleifs for later.

    If you can't agree on where you should live, how to handle family, etc, WTF basis do you have to build a lifetime RELATIONSHIP on?
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    emerald8emerald8 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Based on what do you say that my parents' marriage is bad?  Because my father can't control his siblings?  It's pretty rare that they have to see/deal with them and my parents are happy the rest of the time.  No, a long marriage is not the same as a successful one, but is a happy, long marriage successful in your eyes?  It's obvious this was the wrong place to go for some sympathy, support, suggestions, etc.  Thanks but no thanks everyone.  This is not a game.
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    HeffalumpHeffalump member
    First Anniversary First Comment 5 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_wedding-woes_fhs-mother-sisters-bil-crazy-ffil?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:47Discussion:94907587-d7a5-4d02-9bd1-9f3e040b6703Post:04ddfb4e-fb48-456e-a1dd-6f0a8e28f5fd">Re: My FH's mother, sisters, & BIL are crazy, and FFIL is no help.</a>:
    [QUOTE]Based on what do you say that my parents' marriage is bad?  Because my father can't control his siblings?  It's pretty rare that they have to see/deal with them and my parents are happy the rest of the time.  No, a long marriage is not the same as a successful one, but is a happy, long marriage successful in your eyes?  It's obvious this was the wrong place to go for some sympathy, support, suggestions, etc.  Thanks but no thanks everyone.  This is not a game.
    Posted by emerald8[/QUOTE]
    Damn, I really didn't think she was going to go there.  Seemed fairly rational, like she was starting to accept the sad reality of her relationship with Man Boy.  Then GBCK had to just push her right over the edge. 

    I guess things didn't go badly enough last night to give her a hall pass out of her engagement.
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    GBCKGBCK member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I dunno, the fact that your parents raised a doormat and your mom puts up w/ verbal abuse from his family doesn't exactly give me a stellar review of your parent's marriage.

    You at LEAST know (whether you admit it or not) that the way YOUR family deals w/ ILs is unhealthy...so you should have your eyes open that the way you're currently dealing w/ them is unhealthy times 10000
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