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Etiquette

Future Step-mother-in-law questions

Hey, so my boyfriend and I are basically engaged. Like we're just waiting for the ring to come before we make it official. His stepmother is already driving me crazy about wedding planning.
Basically neither he or I are all to thrilled about her even being included in the wedding events (but we really have no choice). However, I feel like she is really overstepping her boundaries. 
She is already announcing to everyone that we are engaged, when we wanted to wait until the ring came. She is talking about sending an announcement to the newspaper on her own, when that is something my parents want to do. She is constantly pressuring me into giving her information about our wedding, when I haven't even started planning.
I normally say things like "well we are really kind of waiting until it's more official" or "I haven't really gotten that far in the process yet" but then she comes back with "you need to get a move on or you're going to regret it."
I don't really know how to handle this situation. I am no where near comfortable talking to her about this, she and I do not have any sort of relationship other than pleasantries when I go to his dad's house. He does not have any positive relationship with her. He pretty much actively dislikes her.
I'm thinking of asking him to talk to his dad, but I'm afraid of hurt feelings. I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings, but I also don't want to feel like I have to walk on eggshells when it comes to my own wedding.  

Re: Future Step-mother-in-law questions

  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    Either you are engaged or you aren't. There's no sorta engaged or engaged to be engaged. 

    When she asks about the wedding, just say "we don't know yet. We'll let you know when we make a decision" and then bean dip her. If she pushes you to make decisions or do things you don't want to do, just tell her that you'll consider it and change the subject. When she brings up a newspaper announcement, tell her that you'll handle it when you're ready. Just keep changing the subject.

    There's no reason to have anyone talk to her or turn it into a big issue. She's excited and maybe overstepping, but she's not being mean or cruel. 
    MesmrEweInLoveInQueens
  • I see what you're saying about the announcement of the engagement.  There is no doubt that she is excited, but I'm kind of comparing this to announcing a pregnancy before the couple is ready. He and I aren't ready to announce to anyone yet. The only reason she even knows is because he spoke to his dad about buying the ring. 
    I will definitely have him speak to his dad to at least relay the message that she needs to slow her roll. Both he and I only want our parents, no step parents, involved with the processes. 
  • Hey, so my boyfriend and I are basically engaged. Like we're just waiting for the ring to come before we make it official. His stepmother is already driving me crazy about wedding planning.
    Basically neither he or I are all to thrilled about her even being included in the wedding events (but we really have no choice). However, I feel like she is really overstepping her boundaries. 
    She is already announcing to everyone that we are engaged, when we wanted to wait until the ring came. She is talking about sending an announcement to the newspaper on her own, when that is something my parents want to do. She is constantly pressuring me into giving her information about our wedding, when I haven't even started planning.
    I normally say things like "well we are really kind of waiting until it's more official" or "I haven't really gotten that far in the process yet" but then she comes back with "you need to get a move on or you're going to regret it."
    I don't really know how to handle this situation. I am no where near comfortable talking to her about this, she and I do not have any sort of relationship other than pleasantries when I go to his dad's house. He does not have any positive relationship with her. He pretty much actively dislikes her.
    I'm thinking of asking him to talk to his dad, but I'm afraid of hurt feelings. I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings, but I also don't want to feel like I have to walk on eggshells when it comes to my own wedding.  
    Re: the bolded- why is this the case? Do you mean you aren't thrilled about her being involved in wedding planning, or just being invited to the wedding itself? 

    I guess my opinion would be- on the one hand, I understand her feeling like it's a little silly to not consider yourself "officially" engaged because you have decided you are getting married and that's what an engagement is- lots of people are engaged without a ring and the presence of one doesn't really make it any more official. On the other hand, if you've asked her not to announce it to people yet, she should respect that and it's rude of her to keep pressuring you to start planning things when you've expressed you aren't there yet.

    I think the best way to proceed is just to be realistic about what you can control. I don't know why you shared with her that you were "basically engaged" before you were ready to share that with the world, but let that be a lesson learned- don't tell her things you don't want her spreading, don't fret over actions outside of your control (like her placing an announcement in the paper) and don't discuss any details of the wedding with her if you don't want her input. I don't think talking to your FI's dad is necessary- if she brings it up to you just firmly say "We'd rather not talk about that right now" and move the conversation along.
  • I see what you're saying about the announcement of the engagement.  There is no doubt that she is excited, but I'm kind of comparing this to announcing a pregnancy before the couple is ready. He and I aren't ready to announce to anyone yet. The only reason she even knows is because he spoke to his dad about buying the ring. 
    I will definitely have him speak to his dad to at least relay the message that she needs to slow her roll. Both he and I only want our parents, no step parents, involved with the processes. 
    It's not really the same at all as a pregnancy announcement though. Most people refrain from announcing a pregnancy in the early weeks because there is a higher chance of miscarriage in the first trimester- a tragic event that they aren't comfortable broadcasting to the world. That's not comparable to anything in getting engaged or planning a wedding.

    Honestly it sounds like there's bad blood between y'all and your FSMIL- and we don't know the backstory, maybe she completely deserves that. But it sounds like y'all are fixing to make things even worse if you're really obviously excluding her. Which again, maybe she deserves- just know that it might have consequences.
    MyNameIsNotOliveOilsMomInLoveInQueens

  • Re: the bolded- why is this the case? Do you mean you aren't thrilled about her being involved in wedding planning, or just being invited to the wedding itself? 
    The reason for this is because of the type of person she is. We would prefer if she didn't even come to the wedding. She is often rude and generally will turn any event into a "woe is me" party. She has literally forced herself to become sick and sat in the bathroom crying the whole time at two different birthday celebrations. 
    However, we really don't have an option of not inviting her. She is going to have to be invited to all "family" events. We're even thinking of not having an engagement party because of her.

    I guess my opinion would be- on the one hand, I understand her feeling like it's a little silly to not consider yourself "officially" engaged because you have decided you are getting married and that's what an engagement is- lots of people are engaged without a ring and the presence of one doesn't really make it any more official. On the other hand, if you've asked her not to announce it to people yet, she should respect that and it's rude of her to keep pressuring you to start planning things when you've expressed you aren't there yet.
    I think the best way to proceed is just to be realistic about what you can control. I don't know why you shared with her that you were "basically engaged" before you were ready to share that with the world, but let that be a lesson learned- don't tell her things you don't want her spreading, don't fret over actions outside of your control (like her placing an announcement in the paper) and don't discuss any details of the wedding with her if you don't want her input. I don't think talking to your FI's dad is necessary- if she brings it up to you just firmly say "We'd rather not talk about that right now" and move the conversation along.

    The only people that were told were his mom and dad, because he spoke to them about buying the ring. I only know because he told me to go pick out some rings. However, I guess his dad told her and she is in turn telling anyone she pleases. I don't even know if my parents know, I assume they do, because I'm assuming he has talked to them. So I guess it is important to let her know that we would like for her to keep it hush hush.
  • MesmrEweMesmrEwe member
    Knottie Warrior 2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited February 2016

    Few things...

    1) You are engaged or you aren't engaged... Just because you do/don't have the ring means nothing, the ring is just a symbol, and not a necessary one to get married! 

    2) You have something many brides here pine for - someone as excited or more about their pending marriage... 

    3) You need to master the fine art of making good "Bean Dip" - i.e. deflect the discussion "oh isn't this wonderful bean dip?!?!"... 

    4) How you shut it down/nip in the bud early... "I'm so excited that you're excited, we are too, and we first want to spend time planning the marriage before we start planning the wedding!  There are only three real things we need to get married (someone to marry you, a license, and someone to preside over/witness), but it's more important to us to focus on the reasons to stay married for a lifetime instead of just one day!  What's for supper tonight?"...  (also, no announcement until you've got details finalized)

    5) Before ANY wedding talk, because this is going to be the real deciding factor in discussing all things wedding, BUDGET!!!  What can YOU TWO alone reasonably afford without one penny of assistance from ANYONE else (imagine the money doesn't exist until the credit card is swiped or money is physically in your account and remember with money comes strings), nor going into debt (a wedding is not a good reason to go into debt!).  THEN, what type of ceremony (JOP, Church, Garden, etc.).  THEN guest list.  Then, using that information you can strategically plan the rest and talk details with FSMIL..

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
    KatWAGSP29InLoveInQueens
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Your FI needs to tell his stepmother, "Stepmom, thanks, but we're not ready to announce the engagement yet, and when we are, we will do it.  We appreciate your offers of help, and we'll let you know if and when we're ready to take you up on them.  In the meantime, FI and I have some decisions to make on our own, and we would really appreciate it if you would not take any part of the planning on yourself without us green-lighting it."

    And then don't share anything with her that you're not willing for the whole world to know about.
    SP29

  • Re: the bolded- why is this the case? Do you mean you aren't thrilled about her being involved in wedding planning, or just being invited to the wedding itself? 
    The reason for this is because of the type of person she is. We would prefer if she didn't even come to the wedding. She is often rude and generally will turn any event into a "woe is me" party. She has literally forced herself to become sick and sat in the bathroom crying the whole time at two different birthday celebrations. 
    However, we really don't have an option of not inviting her. She is going to have to be invited to all "family" events. We're even thinking of not having an engagement party because of her.

    I guess my opinion would be- on the one hand, I understand her feeling like it's a little silly to not consider yourself "officially" engaged because you have decided you are getting married and that's what an engagement is- lots of people are engaged without a ring and the presence of one doesn't really make it any more official. On the other hand, if you've asked her not to announce it to people yet, she should respect that and it's rude of her to keep pressuring you to start planning things when you've expressed you aren't there yet.
    I think the best way to proceed is just to be realistic about what you can control. I don't know why you shared with her that you were "basically engaged" before you were ready to share that with the world, but let that be a lesson learned- don't tell her things you don't want her spreading, don't fret over actions outside of your control (like her placing an announcement in the paper) and don't discuss any details of the wedding with her if you don't want her input. I don't think talking to your FI's dad is necessary- if she brings it up to you just firmly say "We'd rather not talk about that right now" and move the conversation along.

    The only people that were told were his mom and dad, because he spoke to them about buying the ring. I only know because he told me to go pick out some rings. However, I guess his dad told her and she is in turn telling anyone she pleases. I don't even know if my parents know, I assume they do, because I'm assuming he has talked to them. So I guess it is important to let her know that we would like for her to keep it hush hush.


    STUCK IN THE BOX

    It sounds like she's a real piece of work, I'm sorry you have to deal with that. I do think though- her and your FI's dad are partners, just as much as you and your FI are. It's not unreasonable for him to have shared the knowledge of the pending proposal with her, and I would have assumed he was going to do that anyway. I'm unclear on if you've actually told her yet that this was supposed to be a secret? From her point of view, it seems like she might just be excited you're engaged and it isn't even occurring to her it should be something she doesn't talk openly about. 
  • kimmiinthemittenkimmiinthemitten Detroit, MI member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    I'm with @themosthappy91; can't FI just explain to her that you haven't personally told all of the people you want to know so you'd rather keep it a secret until all of the people close to you have heard fro you first?

    Also, like it or not, she is your FFIL's wife and you can't exclude her from anything he is involved in, nor expect him to keep secrets from her because you don't like her.  How would you feel if your FI was excluding you from things because someone asked him not to tell/include you?
    image
    OliveOilsMom
  • I agree, she sounds like a piece of work. However, you say you want to the keep the wedding planning to his Mom and Dad and not her. Unfortunately he is married to this woman, that doesn't mean you have to involve her in planning (definitely don't!) but realistically you can't keep her from knowing about the wedding. If you share information with his Dad it's essentially like sharing it with her. So you have some options; either don't share information you don't want "out" with his Dad and SM or be all right with the fact that she's going to know and that you can't control what she does with it. 
    OliveOilsMomkimmiinthemittenSP29
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