Just Engaged and Proposals

Telling my opinionated parents

My fiancé and I have been together for over five and a half years. His family has been beyond accepting since day one of our relationship. My parents initially were accepting, but then...seemingly out of the blue, turned sour in the early stages of our relationship. The situation has deteriorated over the years to the point brining up our relationship, especially with my mother, is beyond tumultuous. My fiancé is a wonderful man. He's a United States Marine, and an over all kind, giving, smart, compassionate man. My parents have NEVER been able to tell me why they so strongly dislike him. Their answer is just always "it's my opinion and that's the only explanation I need." My dilemma is this....we are getting married on the 27th of December come hell or high water. I'm about to graduate from college in December as well. I need to tell my parents this is happening next week. It just has to happen. I'm nervous about their reaction...it won't be pretty. Any suggestions? Has anyone had a similar situation? I am not backing down on my decision to marry the love of my life at this time. This is exactly what's right for me right now. Thank you in advance.   

Re: Telling my opinionated parents

  • manateehuggermanateehugger member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    edited October 2013
    Is he active duty? How old are you? What do your career options look like? Where are you moving?

    Is it more about the circumstances of your relationship (e.g. he's military, you're still in school) or is about him as a person?

    Honestly, I think you need to tell them ASAP and stand up for yourself. Maybe consider having an adult discussion with them about your relationship. I wouldn't be accepting the "it's my opinion" thing, personally - that's what you tell a child, not an adult. I think you just be upfront about your decisions and say you'd like to have their support, but that's up to them.

    If you can't handle telling them about your marriage, you shouldn't be getting married.
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    CLoGreenEyes
  • He is active duty. We are 22. I am looking at career opportunities as a clinical research associate with either a hospital or a pharma company. I am moving to San Diego, CA. 

    I think their opinions are more about him? We've never been able to get to the root of it in almost 6 years because they give me the "it's our opinion" thing. I agree that that's what you say to a child. I've had to change a lot of what I want to do to keep them happy. 

    I can absolutely handle it...it's just handling it in a way that doesn't start a nuclear war in my house. I don't live at home which is an advantage, but we are all not exactly calm people. I defend my relationship and my fiancé fiercely, and they're the same about having me do what they want. Thank you for the pep talk lol! I appreciate it! 
  • manateehuggermanateehugger member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    edited October 2013
    Do you think they are concerned about his and your career since he's military? I know some families, especially those unfamiliar with military life, can be very hesitant to sanction a marriage. Military life is incredibly hard. Make sure you two are prepared for it. 

    And work on that job asap; it's very hard for military spouses to maintain a career, so apply for anything and everything. 

    Remember, you are an adult now, so it's up to you to stay calm. You can't control them, but you can control yourself. Be prepared, anticipate what they will say. Keep saying that you've made your decision, but it's now their decision to give or withhold support, but you'd like them to be there (if that's true) at your wedding. 

    ETA: And I have no clue what your family or your fiance is like, so take this with a grain of salt, but I personally would be concerned if my family objected to my future spouses' character. What do your friends think?
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  • We've been in this for two years so far. We've met quite a few challenges and always overcome them stronger then when we met them. My mom grew up with a few friends who's parents were Navy and Army and I think has a negative view on military life because her friends parents never handled it very well. 

    I do want them to be there. I want them to be supportive. I think, unfortunately, my parents just don't know my fiancé very well. They made it very hard for me to get them to get to know him. He's always had a problem with how my parents disciplined me as a teenager, and wan't shy about his feelings on the issue. I think that may be the core issue they have. That he stood up to them for me. I have no concerns because they object. They're just that type. They want to pick the person I marry, not let me do that. They want the white picket fence, with old money, a million siblings, parents who are doctors or lawyers, dog in the front yard kinda guy...and that is so far from appealing to me. 

    My friends love him. LOVE him. Always have. My friends are the kind who would tell me too if they didn't. We're never hesitant to tell each other someone's good or bad for them. 
  • AddieCakeAddieCake Beyond the Wall member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    So your fiance criticized your parents' disciplining/parenting style to their faces? Hmmm....that seems odd. What made him think it was his place to do that? Unless they were abusing you and it seems to me if they were, you wouldn't have or want a relationship with them as an adult, it wasn't appropriate for him to comment to them about that. 

    You're an adult. You plan to get married. Just tell your parents. Are you going to be afraid to tell them when you get pregnant? If you move overseas? If you buy a house? Or any other big life decision they may have an opinion on? That's no way to live your life. 


    What did you think would happen if you walked up to a group of internet strangers and told them to get shoehorned by their lady doc?~StageManager14
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    manateehuggerSTARMOON44
  • AddieL73 said:
    So your fiance criticized your parents' disciplining/parenting style to their faces? Hmmm....that seems odd. What made him think it was his place to do that?  If he felt like he needed to protect her I am all for it. You can stand up to your parents all you want, but if there is some kind of trauma there (I'm not saying 
    zdanism was abused or anything) but if she can not stand up for herself or it's just NOT getting through to her parents then an "outsider" might help them see reason. 
    Unless they were abusing you and it seems to me if they were, you wouldn't have or want a relationship with them as an adult, it wasn't appropriate for him to comment to them about that. There's all kind of abuse. Mental, emotional, psychological, verbal, not just physical. Sometimes children might not even know they ARE being abused till someone from the outside looking in says something. They might not raise a hand and slap you across the face and call you a spoiled brat, but yelling at you and basically blaming your child for all the troubles you are going through. Hearing that for more than 10+ years will do some serious damage to a person, it can also give the person/people saying the words power. When I stick up to my mother, she words it to where I am being a selfish and mean bitch. That I am the one wronging her, I am learning that this is just my mother, but before she could guilt me into giving her money. Guilt me into feeling like I am in the wrong. My FI is the one who helped me through all that. If zdanism has no problem with her FI sticking up for her then it wasn't wrong. Sometimes everyone needs help. 

    zdanism -  I am not at all saying you are weak or you were abused or anything like that, but I was "abused" in a way by my parents, especially my mother. The whole "they want to pick the man for you, not let you choose" sounds just like my mother when I was in my pre-teen to teen years. It sounds like they are disappointed that you didn't pick the guy THEY thought you were going to end up with. My parents thought I would meet a guy in school and bring him home to meet, not online and move to his hometown in NY. ^_^ Best decision of my life. 

    You're an adult. You plan to get married. Just tell your parents. I agree. You just have to do it. You don't live with them, which is a good thing, but they will have to accept you chose your FI & that isn't changing anytime soon. My parents finally didn't accept it till I frickin got on the place to go to NY! Bring FI with you and tell them just in case it does get out of hand. Just prepare for some maybe mean words to come spewing out of their mouths. Are you going to be afraid to tell them when you get pregnant? If you move overseas? If you buy a house? Or any other big life decision they may have an opinion on? That's no way to live your life. Figured this out the hard way. 



    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Maybe they're opposed because they think getting married before you have a job to a man who both doesn't know them very well you has been critical of their parenting is a sign that you're too immature for marriage? Or that they think he's driving a wedge between you two? Or that his decisions and his career are controlling your life and they don't like it?

    The way to prove to them that you're an adult is to act it. Tell them you're getting married. Answer their questions. Have a plan.
  • I can help you with this situation, because I've been there.  My parents ADORE my fiance, but his parents were less than thrilled about me.  I'm a good girl, I have a good job, and we waited until we graduated college to get engaged, his family's reservations about me were exactly as your familes, that they wanted to pick his spouse, not him.  His mom felt like she was "losing her baby" and was overly and insanely attached, to the point of where she tried to break us up on MUTIPLE occasions, inviting ex girlfriends over, forbiding him from seeing me on breaks from college, ect. When we got engaged, he was TERRIFED to tell them, but eventually we did, and guess what? everything was great! getting engaged was actually exactly what they needed to bring them around.  I have a pretty good relationship with his whole family now that we're engaged and she knows theres nothing she can do to stop it, and she used to forbid me from being in her house.  They're even planning the rehersal dinner.  So you never know, they may come around once they realize theres nothing you can do to stop it, and this is what you really want.  We're also only 23, and I had not found a job yet when we got engaged.  Hope this helps!
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