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Moms and Maids

Uninterested and Unsupportive Mother-In-Law & Father-In-Law

Hi Ladies! I'm going through a messy dilemma and not able to think clearly, I hope someone can offer some sound and practical advice. (if you can relate in some way, that would also be helpful).

My fiance and I got engaged last month (September 2015) after dating for 4 years. We both currently live at home, still with our parents (20 mins from each other). His family is polar opposite of mine. My family is VERY family-orientated and my siblings and I are best friends (I have 1 sister & 1 brother - I'm the oldest, we're all in our 20s). Growing up (and still today with certain things) my parents are involved in me and my siblings lives. They play an active role in our lives and have always been that way. However, my fiance comes from a different family dynamic. While both of his parents are physically present, they've never been really there for him or his siblings (he has 1 younger brother and two older sisters). My fiance and his siblings as individuals, are family-orientated and they make an effort to keep the family as well as each other connected. However, their parents aren't the same, they're not family-orientated and have never made any real effort to be there for my fiance or his siblings in any way besides in the physical sense of being there. They pretty much raised themselves. Their parents aren't drug or alcohol addicts, or  bums or anything like that -- They have jobs and work hard, they just don't care. (i know, it's weird).

Ever since I started dating my fiance, his parents never made a real effort to get to know me, our relationship or anything like that. They never offered any support for anything pertaining to me or the relationship I have with their son. I couldn't tell you how they really feel about our relationship. They'll have small talk with me when I go over to visit with my fiance, they'll ask how I'm doing but they just aren't interested. If I bring up wedding planning, they don't care. They never seem interested in anything that goes on in their kids lives. I've tried to get close to my in-laws but they kind of push me away. I've come to accept that his parents may not be there when we tie the knot. And they may not be there for any other triumpanth moment in our lives. I've accepted it.

On the other hand, I've been explaining the situation and difference in family structure to my family and they don't get it and understand it (well my siblings can understand it, my parents don't) - which is expected especially since our family dynamics are totally different where interaction with our parents are involved. My parents are assuming that it's my fault as to why my future in-laws are uninterested :( even though I've explained the situation a million times to them, they're still accusing me of not trying hard enough to get to know my in-laws MUCH better or get them to be more enthusiastic about certain things. My fiance believes that it's not his place to talk with my parents or his parents to resolve the issue. He says his parents are they way they are and they've always been like this. And it's driving me crazy because I feel like I'm the only one trying to find a solution. He doesn't see a problem but I do when I'm getting blamed by my parents for his parents lack of involvement in wedding planning or anything else involved to us starting a life. But also, I know I can't change how his parents feel or behave. I can't control their actions.

I'm trying to get my parents to understand that my future in-laws not being interested, is just how they are. And they shouldn't take offense to it. I'm also wondering my fiance won't come to my resuce and talk with my parents as well as with his and defend me against my parents -- because he knows I've tried multiple time to get close with his parents (like he is with mine). And I'm not sure what else to do and I would love to hear any and all advice and/or suggestions.

Should I try to fix it? OR Just ignore it?

Thanks a million in advance, ladies!

Re: Uninterested and Unsupportive Mother-In-Law & Father-In-Law

  • To answer your question:  No, he's not. Ironically, he actually loves that my family is so close. He loves being around my immediate and my extended family. He's close with my sister and my brother and loves the tight-knit family atmosphere.

    Thanks SO much for your advice!!  I appreciate it!!
  • Hi Ladies! I'm going through a messy dilemma and not able to think clearly, I hope someone can offer some sound and practical advice. (if you can relate in some way, that would also be helpful).

    My fiance and I got engaged last month (September 2015) after dating for 4 years. We both currently live at home, still with our parents (20 mins from each other). His family is polar opposite of mine. My family is VERY family-orientated and my siblings and I are best friends (I have 1 sister & 1 brother - I'm the oldest, we're all in our 20s). Growing up (and still today with certain things) my parents are involved in me and my siblings lives. They play an active role in our lives and have always been that way. However, my fiance comes from a different family dynamic. While both of his parents are physically present, they've never been really there for him or his siblings (he has 1 younger brother and two older sisters). My fiance and his siblings as individuals, are family-orientated and they make an effort to keep the family as well as each other connected. However, their parents aren't the same, they're not family-orientated and have never made any real effort to be there for my fiance or his siblings in any way besides in the physical sense of being there. They pretty much raised themselves. Their parents aren't drug or alcohol addicts, or  bums or anything like that -- They have jobs and work hard, they just don't care. (i know, it's weird).

    Ever since I started dating my fiance, his parents never made a real effort to get to know me, our relationship or anything like that. They never offered any support for anything pertaining to me or the relationship I have with their son. I couldn't tell you how they really feel about our relationship. They'll have small talk with me when I go over to visit with my fiance, they'll ask how I'm doing but they just aren't interested. If I bring up wedding planning, they don't care. They never seem interested in anything that goes on in their kids lives. I've tried to get close to my in-laws but they kind of push me away. I've come to accept that his parents may not be there when we tie the knot. And they may not be there for any other triumpanth moment in our lives. I've accepted it.

    On the other hand, I've been explaining the situation and difference in family structure to my family and they don't get it and understand it (well my siblings can understand it, my parents don't) - which is expected especially since our family dynamics are totally different where interaction with our parents are involved. My parents are assuming that it's my fault as to why my future in-laws are uninterested :( even though I've explained the situation a million times to them, they're still accusing me of not trying hard enough to get to know my in-laws MUCH better or get them to be more enthusiastic about certain things. My fiance believes that it's not his place to talk with my parents or his parents to resolve the issue. He says his parents are they way they are and they've always been like this. And it's driving me crazy because I feel like I'm the only one trying to find a solution. He doesn't see a problem but I do when I'm getting blamed by my parents for his parents lack of involvement in wedding planning or anything else involved to us starting a life. But also, I know I can't change how his parents feel or behave. I can't control their actions.

    I'm trying to get my parents to understand that my future in-laws not being interested, is just how they are. And they shouldn't take offense to it. I'm also wondering my fiance won't come to my resuce and talk with my parents as well as with his and defend me against my parents -- because he knows I've tried multiple time to get close with his parents (like he is with mine). And I'm not sure what else to do and I would love to hear any and all advice and/or suggestions.

    Should I try to fix it? OR Just ignore it?

    Thanks a million in advance, ladies!
    I'm curious about the bolded - some parents are more hands-off, but that doesn't mean they wouldn't go to their son's wedding. Is there a reason you think they won't come? Are you planning on inviting them?
    InLoveInQueens
  • Thanks!  I didn't think it was me but I was trying to figure out why it's such a big deal and if I was doing anything wrong.
  • We're definitely planning on inviting them for sure (we're planning on inviting everyone in our families and our close friends...whether they come or not, is up to them) but my fiance said that he doesn't think they will because they probably won't want to.
  • I am in the same situation as you are, OP.  His parents are boring.  I don't like going over to visit his parents because all they do is watch TV and read and occasionally ask obnoxious, blunt questions like, "So are you EVER going to get married?"  When we do, they will be thrilled to hear that they can wear khakis and a polo for him, dress slacks and a button-down for her, and will not want to have anything else to do with the event.  They will want to just show up, eat, and leave early to get home for their favorite TV shows.  MY family, on the other hand, will be annoyingly involved and I'll have to shut my mother down on several different topics.  My parents still don't understand his parents, but they've met and like each other okay.  His parents called me and my parents "crazy" after they met the first time last year, which, compared to the boringness that is them, we are.

    Take a deep breath.  It will be fine.  You'll both just be spending more time with your more fun family rather than with his more boring family.  Everyone will be happy with this outcome.
    Knottie1443466450.defunct635804952935178968lc07
  • VERY VERY good advice!  I'll try that... Thanks SOOO much!!!!
    Jen4948spockforprez
  • It's not his parents' responsibility to be involved with the wedding planning. The only people whose responsibility it is is yours and your fiance's.

    If it comes up with your parents again, I would just tell them that while you really appreciate their involvement no one can expect his parents'. Say the family dynamic is just different. Say they are not interested in the wedding and continuing to press them about it would likely just make them even less so.
    If it continues just tell them that there's nothing you can do and you feel like they are blaming you for something you have no control over and it is hurting your feelings. I would hope if your family is as close as you say that that would make them dial back.

    Last ditch effort after that is to just stop talking to your parents about the wedding but hopefully it won't come to that.
    CMGragainInLoveInQueens
  • My late mother and mother-in-law hated each other.  They did not speak or communicate, even though they lived three blocks from each other.  They had known each other since before DH or I were born.
    We have been happily married for 39 years.  I didn't mess with his family, and he ducked his head and avoided my mother.  (Very wise!)  We outlived them both.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    Knottie1443466450.defunct635804952935178968
  • levioosalevioosa Southern California member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    First of all, what the fuck is wrong with OP's knottienumbers?  It's all over the place.  

    OP, people are not going to change just because there is a wedding.  It's okay to let it go and accept that this is just the way things are.  SO's family is kind of distant and all over the place.  It's okay, they're not going to be the same as my family, and every family dynamic is different. Your parents do need to back off though.  If they ask, just tell them that FI's family dynamic is different and the topic is closed and then change the subject.  


    image
  • I think your parents are the problem here. Sounds like you could do with a little more space from them.
  • That is the longest username I've ever seen on here.  And I remember when ilovewhoseweddingisitanyway was on Wedding Woes.

    I don't think there's a right or wrong here, except that trying to force one family into another family's mold is definitely not right.  Your family sounds way too far up in your business, but it works for you and doesn't affect me, so I'm not going to tell you to firm up your boundaries.  (Except to echo @Jen4948's advice to not discuss the situation with them, because it's none of their business.)

    My family is closer than DH's.  It happens.  Accept it and move on.
  • climbingwifeclimbingwife NYC 'burbs member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    If his parents have always been un-involved, that's not going to change just because there's a wedding. You need to stand up to your parents and tell them to back off. 

    I don't have much of a relationship with my FIL, and that's just the way it is. He's very standoffish and has been that way forever. My parents do not in any way get involved in my relationship with my in-laws. 

  • AddieCakeAddieCake Beyond the Wall member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    Yep. Tell your parents that this is not their business and that the subject is closed.
    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
    image
  • People probably think that of me :)   I guess you could consider me a loaner.. My parents were there for us but weren't over supportive either. I learned a lot and did a lot on my own. We aren't the go everywhere do everything best friend type of family. My hubby's family is... at times I do not like it at all. It makes me uncomfortable but I try. Try looking at it from their point of view maybe they think you are the odd one??   Be nice, keep doing what you are used to but don't be mad at them for not being what you want them to be.
  • Hi Ladies! I'm going through a messy dilemma and not able to think clearly, I hope someone can offer some sound and practical advice. (if you can relate in some way, that would also be helpful).

    My fiance and I got engaged last month (September 2015) after dating for 4 years. We both currently live at home, still with our parents (20 mins from each other). His family is polar opposite of mine. My family is VERY family-orientated and my siblings and I are best friends (I have 1 sister & 1 brother - I'm the oldest, we're all in our 20s). Growing up (and still today with certain things) my parents are involved in me and my siblings lives. They play an active role in our lives and have always been that way. However, my fiance comes from a different family dynamic. While both of his parents are physically present, they've never been really there for him or his siblings (he has 1 younger brother and two older sisters). My fiance and his siblings as individuals, are family-orientated and they make an effort to keep the family as well as each other connected. However, their parents aren't the same, they're not family-orientated and have never made any real effort to be there for my fiance or his siblings in any way besides in the physical sense of being there.  They pretty much raised themselves. Their parents aren't drug or alcohol addicts, or  bums or anything like that -- They have jobs and work hard, they just don't care. (i know, it's weird). Have you talked to your parents like this about them? In this very negative way? you said you both live at home/ so he still lives with his parents, at what age, because if they "don't care" they could have said "rent our out" but if they are providing their over 18 kids a place to live that in my mind is supportive in some way.. I am just wondering if the negativity from your parents is because of the negative way you portray them because they are different than what you are used to..

    Ever since I started dating my fiance, his parents never made a real effort to get to know me, our relationship or anything like that. They never offered any support for anything pertaining to me or the relationship I have with their son. What support is needed? like do they not let you come around, or they try to be involved in every aspect of his relationship like it sounds like your parents do.. I couldn't tell you how they really feel about our relationship. They'll have small talk with me when I go over to visit with my fiance, they'll ask how I'm doing but they just aren't interested. In my experience, if they are not interested then they don't ask.. do you just say "good" or do you attempt to keep the conversation going?  If I bring up wedding planning, they don't care. no one is going to care about your wedding as much as you, and maybe they don't like weddings.. They never seem interested in anything that goes on in their kids lives. I've tried to get close to my in-laws but they kind of push me away. I've come to accept that his parents may not be there when we tie the knot. And they may not be there for any other triumpanth moment in our lives. I've accepted it. do they have high stress jobs, things that they do on their own?

    On the other hand, I've been explaining the situation and difference in family structure to my family and they don't get it and understand it (well my siblings can understand it, my parents don't) - which is expected especially since our family dynamics are totally different where interaction with our parents are involved. My parents are assuming that it's my fault as to why my future in-laws are uninterested :( even though I've explained the situation a million times to them, they're still accusing me of not trying hard enough to get to know my in-laws MUCH better or get them to be more enthusiastic about certain things. My fiance believes that it's not his place to talk with my parents or his parents to resolve the issue. He says his parents are they way they are and they've always been like this. And it's driving me crazy because I feel like I'm the only one trying to find a solution. He doesn't see a problem but I do when I'm getting blamed by my parents for his parents lack of involvement in wedding planning or anything else involved to us starting a life. But also, I know I can't change how his parents feel or behave. I can't control their actions. This is non of their business, stop talking to them about it like PP have suggested.. they are different from your family nothing more to understand.

    I'm trying to get my parents to understand that my future in-laws not being interested, is just how they are. And they shouldn't take offense to it. I'm also wondering my fiance won't come to my resuce and talk with my parents as well as with his and defend me against my parents -- because he knows I've tried multiple time to get close with his parents (like he is with mine). And I'm not sure what else to do and I would love to hear any and all advice and/or suggestions.

    Should I try to fix it? OR Just ignore it?

    Thanks a million in advance, ladies!
    Stop being so negative about his family, it is his family and they are how they are, there is nothing to get, or understand more than that. if they are mean, nasty, rude, that is different, but this just sounds like you need to get over the different family dynamic, and stop talking to your family about it.
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