Not Engaged Yet

FI's Dad

FI's dad has issues with our relationship- he always has. I've shared it here quite a few times.  We've now been together for over 4 years, and he's still not 'there' with his support.

Anyways, yesterday FI had a conversation with his dad and it didn't go superb. His dad said he's concerned that I don't care about Jeff's lutheran heritage. This is NOT true. I do care about it. I've tried to learn about his past and beliefs as much as I can. Together we've decided to not go to a lutheran church together and go to a less traditional (nondenomonational) church instead. Instead of his dad saying he wishes that Jeff would still be lutheran or whatever, he blamed it on me for not 'caring' about Jeff's lutheran past. This bothered me. 

Second, his dad said that I have all the power in the relationship. Funny part is, his dad is NEVER around us. I've been in the same place as him twice since the end of summer (Christmas and his aunts birthday party). It bothers me that his dad said this because someone else (who he wouldn't tell who) shared this with him. Even though Jeff and I both feel that the power in our relationship is a very even split. There are some things I take charge on, and there are some things he does. 

I'm pretty upset about this and REALLY don't want to deal with it 7 months before the big wedding day. But, I suppose 7 months is better than dealing with it a month before the day. I just want his dad's support.

So, any advice? Should I leave it completely up to Jeff and his dad to discuss the concerns? Or should I meet with his dad as well?

Thanks so much ladies!
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Re: FI's Dad

  • I should also add: Jeff has been handling it pretty well. He is not the greatest at thinking about responses on the spot, but he is trying his best to stick up for me/our relationship. I feel horrible for him because I cannot imagine how terrible it would feel if my father was how his father is.
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  • bethsmilesbethsmiles Denver, CO member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    I wouldn't do anything. I would polite when I see him and pretend I don't know any of the things he has said. If you try to fix things it will probably just make things worse, IMO.


  • I'm sorry you're dealing with this. :( I think that as long as he sticks up for you/your relationship that's all you can hope for now. You can't make his dad like you but he can make sure that his dad is respectful of you and your relationship - maybe saying something like, "Dad, I understand your concerns but we're very happy and polkadot is going to be my wife in 7 months and you need to respect our relationship."

    Do you think he'll be more difficult as the wedding gets closer?
    And if the stormy weather came...I'd just kiss you in the rain... Daisypath Anniversary tickers image
  • Maybe without insinuating that you know the things his dad has said, you might want to get together with his dad/parents for lunch/coffee/dinner etc. and try to spend more time with them so that he can see you two together and get to know you better. If you're about to become family, I think it would be good to build a relationship regardless if his dad already loves you or not.
    Sent from my iPad - any unusual words or misspellings are due to an autocorrect incident that I may have missed.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_fis-dad?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:136Discussion:69360c61-f0c0-4df8-830a-41a3fd20c083Post:aef5e1d0-2034-43d2-9a55-b12161d40141">Re: FI's Dad</a>:
    [QUOTE]Maybe without insinuating that you know the things his dad has said, you might want to get together with his dad/parents for lunch/coffee/dinner etc. and try to spend more time with them so that he can see you two together and get to know you better. If you're about to become family, I think it would be good to build a relationship regardless if his dad already loves you or not.
    Posted by stacybean[/QUOTE]

    <div>I know the things his dad said because he had a conversation with Jeff about it. But yes, I know I need to get to know them. I don't live in the same town right now though (finishing up my degree). It's tough to get to know someone though when you know they do not like you. It's hard to be myself when I feel like he is just looking for downfalls. </div>
    Used to be bourgehm. +1,500 posts. Silly knot
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_fis-dad?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:136Discussion:69360c61-f0c0-4df8-830a-41a3fd20c083Post:1b179989-526e-4689-8e0e-1401f09f3d1e">Re: FI's Dad</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm sorry you're dealing with this. :( I think that as long as he sticks up for you/your relationship that's all you can hope for now. You can't make his dad like you but he can make sure that his dad is respectful of you and your relationship - maybe saying something like, "Dad, I understand your concerns but we're very happy and polkadot is going to be my wife in 7 months and you need to respect our relationship." Do you think he'll be more difficult as the wedding gets closer?
    Posted by kellyt89[/QUOTE]

    <div>No, I dont think he'll be more 'difficult'. Or at least I hope not!</div>
    Used to be bourgehm. +1,500 posts. Silly knot
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  • I don't think there is much that can be done right now to sway Jeff's dad. If you and Jeff are happy with the church you attend, and the choice really was mutual, then Jeff needs to tell his dad that it was HIS choice to worship in his own way, and that was not within the Lutheran church. If his dad is really tradtional, he might see an equal relationship as one where the woman has ALL the power. If you and Jeff really are happy about the way things are, then don't worry.

    That being said, I would take a moment and try to see if you can see where his dad is coming from. Talk to Jeff about his dad's concerns in an open and non defensive way. If Jeff really is happy about how things are, then shrug it off and hope he comes around.



    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_fis-dad?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:136Discussion:69360c61-f0c0-4df8-830a-41a3fd20c083Post:26d71d0e-058f-4fa6-8a36-eb990c9be09f">FI's Dad</a>:
    [QUOTE]FI's dad has issues with our relationship- he always has. I've shared it here quite a few times.  We've now been together for over 4 years, and he's still not 'there' with his support. Anyways, yesterday FI had a conversation with his dad and it didn't go superb. His dad said he's concerned that I don't care about Jeff's lutheran heritage. This is NOT true. I do care about it. I've tried to learn about his past and beliefs as much as I can. Together we've decided to not go to a lutheran church together and go to a less traditional (nondenomonational) church instead. Instead of his dad saying he wishes that Jeff would still be lutheran or whatever, he blamed it on me for not 'caring' about Jeff's lutheran past. This bothered me.  Second, his dad said that I have all the power in the relationship. <strong>Funny part is, his dad is NEVER around us. I've been in the same place as him twice since the end of summer </strong>(Christmas and his aunts birthday party). It bothers me that his dad said this because someone else (who he wouldn't tell who) shared this with him. Even though Jeff and I both feel that the power in our relationship is a very even split. There are some things I take charge on, and there are some things he does.  I'm pretty upset about this and REALLY don't want to deal with it 7 months before the big wedding day. But, I suppose 7 months is better than dealing with it a month before the day. I just want his dad's support. So, any advice? Should I leave it completely up to Jeff and his dad to discuss the concerns? Or should I meet with his dad as well? Thanks so much ladies!
    Posted by polkadot111[/QUOTE]

    I think this may be part of the problem.

    If his dad doesn't see the two of you together very often, he doesn't have a whole lot of information with which to gauge your relationship.  All he knows is what he hears from Jeff, and Jeff may be doing something (unintentionally, I'm sure) to make you come off as controlling.

    I had an issue for a while with FI's family where several of them thought that I was leading FI away from his religion.  They only got that impression because it was hard for him, in fear of disappointing them, to tell them that he was simply losing interest in it.  The more time they spent around me, however, the better they felt about the whole thing.  Now everybody's cool.

    I know it's frustrating, but try to be patient.  This sort of thing tends to sort itself out with time.  It'll be a distant memory in the future.
  • Thanks for all of the advice everyone!

    Yes, I know I need to spend more time with them. It's just so hard! I'll try to make the effort and try to remind myself that it takes time for them to realize I'm not sooo horrible after all.
    Used to be bourgehm. +1,500 posts. Silly knot
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  • I know just how you feel.  FI's dad told me I was 15 steps behind his son in intelligence.  Ya try to be nice to the guy after that.  It hasn't been easy.  There has also been the encouraging his son to sleep with other women while dating me...  So I know how you feel.  I think Elle has hit the nail on the head, spending more time with him will help you feel a little more at ease with him and will help him get to know you better.  Really, even though I have a lot of problems with FFIL it helps that I see him every day, makes me a little softer in the long run.  I know it is hard being in a LD to want to make time for family.  However, I also think you should be prepared that you might never have the support of his father.  As much as we want our FFIL's to like us they may never like us.  I don't see that as a reflection on us but the plain fact that not everyone gets along.  I think as long as you are polite and try to be friendly, life will be a little easier for you.  *hugs*  I will be praying for you.

    "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

  • csousa1csousa1 member
    Ninth Anniversary 1000 Comments 250 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited January 2012
    It's probably Jeff's dipshit brother whining to his dad about it. "Hope won't let Jeff watch 948594865 hours of football with me on Sunday, SHE SO MEEAAANN!!"

    Sorry.

    As for actual constructive advice, I would stay out of it for now - as much for your own sanity as any other reason. Let Jeff continue to talk to his dad the way that he is comfortable with. Like others have said, maybe try to spend more time around his parents so that they can see how you are together.

    However, if his dad makes even the slightest comment to or around you, that effectively ends the boundary line where you stay out of it and let Jeff deal with it. At that point you are well within your rights to confront him on it, though of course you would still want to be respectful.

    What does Jeff think? Does he want you to talk to his dad or does he want to deal with it himself for now?
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_fis-dad?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:136Discussion:69360c61-f0c0-4df8-830a-41a3fd20c083Post:cbf86188-cb26-4130-96cc-43fe82b82111">Re: FI's Dad</a>:
    [QUOTE]I know just how you feel.  FI's dad told me I was <strong>15 steps behind his son in intelligence.  Ya try to be nice to the guy after that.  It hasn't been easy.  There has also been the encouraging his son to sleep with other women while dating me..</strong>.  So I know how you feel.  I think Elle has hit the nail on the head, spending more time with him will help you feel a little more at ease with him and will help him get to know you better.  Really, even though I have a lot of problems with FFIL it helps that I see him every day, makes me a little softer in the long run.  I know it is hard being in a LD to want to make time for family.  However, I also think you should be prepared that you might never have the support of his father.  As much as we want our FFIL's to like us they may never like us.  I don't see that as a reflection on us but the plain fact that not everyone gets along.  I think as long as you are polite and try to be friendly, life will be a little easier for you.  *hugs*  I will be praying for you.
    Posted by ravenray[/QUOTE]


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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_fis-dad?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:136Discussion:69360c61-f0c0-4df8-830a-41a3fd20c083Post:0dd3e8fa-a11e-4fa9-a4e4-61d363a11c86">Re: FI's Dad</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: FI's Dad :
    Posted by csousa1[/QUOTE]
    I know right?

    Also Hope, Sousa has some very good points.  Jeff does need to be the one standing up for you. (I know that you said he tries and does)  He also should be the one making the plans to see his dad :)   That way you aren't the controling beezy that he had heard about.
    "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

  • I think everyone had really good advice. I think it's horrible how they have treated you, Hope, and Ray too. FMIL makes me feel pretty horrible sometimes, but it's never direct. It's always passive-aggressive crap. I think that if we spent more time together it might help, but I don't know if that is the right advice for everyone.

    Either way, I'm painfully optimistic sometimes, so I would try all the stuff that everyone has mentioned and see if you can make any progress. If not, and you and Jeff are happy, then it might be better just to let it go.
    -Ely

    Daisypath Wedding tickers
  • Thanks so much for the adivce guys!!
    Raven, wow. I can't imagine being told I am 'less than' in intelegence! Wow... That's bad. His dad has also told Jeff to 'keep looking for other partners', but to be told you are pretty much dumb...ick. Thanks so much for the prayers!!!

    Csousa, I know , right?! Actually it is partly his brother's fault. Instead of speaking positively about us, he often says things that he shouldn't say to his dad. Example: He told his dad that I start all the fights with Jeff and that we fight all the time. He also told his dad once that I take alllllllllll his time. So your sarcasm is actually a bit true!! haha. Jeff is pretty good about handling it. He does stick up for me. He's trying to tell his dad that I am not such a horrible person, and sticks up for me when his dad says stupid things about me. 

    Fingers crossed he decides to be supportive, but yes, I am not counting on it. I think he's convinced himself I suck and doesn't even want to give me a chance anymore. 

    Elle, yeah. I'm going to try to spend more time with him and leave it up to Jeff to talk to his dad. Unless he's a jerk in front of me. Then I will speak up for myself. If this doesn't change soon- time to let it go.
    Used to be bourgehm. +1,500 posts. Silly knot
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