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Advice on this - DP feels left out

(113 Posts)
chumrun Mon 25-Aug-14 09:22:42

I have one brother. He is 18 months older than me and we lost our mum when we were 15 and 17.

It's fair to say our dad went a bit 'strange' after this and although this affected both of us my brother was most impacted and turned to drugs. It was a long and slow decline if you like but he seems to be out the other side now.

Then 3 months ago Dad died and it's brought my brother and I closer together in a way but I've had to take on the supportive role I've always had to.

DP is a relatively new addition (met him in April so he never met my dad) and anyway I was talking about a holiday we are having at the end of this week - just a 3 day break - and I mentioned maybe my brother would like to come and he went absolutely nuclear at me. Said he was sick of hearing about it, he felt pushed out of this shared history (never met my dad or my mum of course) and while he was at it my house looks like a bloody shrine (!)

I of course started crying and he did calm down then and said sorry sorry sorry but if we were going to move forward he had to admit he really dislikes my brother sad and he thought at first it was cause brother was grieving but he just dislikes him.

I don't know, I can't just leave my brother to it but I can't choose between my brother and DP either. And I'm so pushed for time anyway!

Any suggestions?

CatKisser Mon 25-Aug-14 09:27:20

T be honest, I can see why he's put out at you wanting to bring your brother along on your holiday, particularly if he dislikes him.

Can I ask why you're in a supporting role when it comes to your brother? Is he over dependent on you?

Your boyfriend shouldn't have snapped and said the things he did, of course, but the impression I get is that your brother is around a fair bit and makes too many demands of you, which would make a relationship feel crowded.

Just my impression, hope you are ok OP.

My suggestion would be to ditch the DP.

You only met him in April and he's making some nasty statements about your brother, about your house and it looks like he may be trying to drive a wedge between you and your brother:

but if we were going to move forward he had to admit he really dislikes my brother

That nastiness was the real him.

paddleduck Mon 25-Aug-14 09:28:24

Your dp sounds an ass.

AlleyCat11 Mon 25-Aug-14 09:28:29

I have a brother with the same age gap. I'd do anything for him. We'll always be close. I'd be inclined to ditch the new guy. Family comes first.

CatKisser Mon 25-Aug-14 09:28:29

Meant to ask. Is your brother still on drugs? Because you can't get him through that on your own and he's going to have to deal with that one himself.

bumpiesonamission Mon 25-Aug-14 09:29:36

This is a rough situation, I'm sorry.

My personal opinion is that DPs can come and go but it seems your brother needs you and you are close. You probably need him as well as he's you family.

You don't say how close you and DP are but I'd be tempted to stand your ground. Especially as he 'blew up' like that. You never know what might be next and would you risk your relationship with your brother for a guy who may not be around for ever??

Although it may be that in time your brother will need support to become more independent, you shouldn't feel pressured to push it before you're both ready.

Hope that helps

eddielizzard Mon 25-Aug-14 09:30:31

sorry about your dad. this is an horrible time for you.

you've only been going out with your dp for about 5 months. your db is far more important. but a weekend away sounds like a romantic deal, especially in this early stage, and isn't exactly the sort of thing you would invite your db on. you are fulfilling the parent role a bit, and that isn't really sustainable long term.

i think your dp has to be a bit tolerant - he's going to have to see your db occasionally if he's in a relationship with you. i'd try to keep them apart mostly but he is your brother.

so don't take him on the weekend away, but see him at other times, and ask for tolerance from your dp. on your own if you can manage it.

if your dp is expecting you to stop seeing your brother, especially after the passing of your dad, he's a twat.

AskBasil Mon 25-Aug-14 09:32:15

He feels pushed out of your family? What has he done to try and integrate into it?

Need more info really but at first glance he sounds controlling and unempathetic. You've known him five minutes , what's the dilemma?

chumrun Mon 25-Aug-14 09:34:21

Thanks, I agree it's really difficult.

My brother isn't on drugs any more but unfortunately because of years lost really he has few friends and opportunities for socialising; he goes to bed most nights at 8 o clock which seems really awful for a man in his 30s. If I ever say I'm doing anything like going out he asks if he can come as well. Thanks to Facebook I can't really lie either and I wouldn't want to.

Most of my female friends think he is sweet and feel sorry for him.

I can understand dp feeling shoved out as a month into the relationship my dad died and everything went chaotic.

Mouldypineapple Mon 25-Aug-14 09:34:28

Pushed for time in relation to what? The weekend or one thing else?

I would say family first. Your DP is new really and your brother should be a priority. You need to find a way everyone can be happy, maybe don't mention your brother joining you for this particular weekend again but something needs sorting for the longer term or there will be a lot if resentment in your relationship.

LatteLoverLovesLattes Mon 25-Aug-14 09:35:03

I'm sorry to hear about both of your parents and the affect it had on your brother sad Life can be utterly crap sometimes.

Ditch the boyfriend. You've known him, what, 16 weeks? He's shown you who he really is... don't saddle yourself with him. You deserve MUCH more than that.

It's not about choosing between them, it's about choosing not to be with someone who will treat you badly.

AskBasil Mon 25-Aug-14 09:42:44

Chumrum, it sounds as though you believe that your DP somehow has rights here.

He doesn't you know. He's been seeing you for a matter of weeks and you've just been through an enormously traumatic event. His response is to sulk because you're not paying him enough attention.

He is telling you who he is - a self-centred man who expects you to pander to his whims. You sound as though you haven't got much self-esteem and believe you need to work on a relationship which has only existed for a few weeks. You don't. You don't need to invest time or energy in this selfish, self-centred man. There are men out there who understand that they are not the centre of the world and that if a new partner's father dies and family stuff kicks off, if they want to be with that person, they need to adapt to their needs to. It's give and take and he just wants to take. I think it's a huge mistake to imagine that you owe him anything or that you should placate him. He sounds bloody horrible.

DuchessFanny Mon 25-Aug-14 09:49:13

Something doesn't feel right about the new boyfriend. While I can understand him not wanting to share you on a romantic week end away, the comment about your home being a shrine when you've lost both parents and your DDad so recently does not show him in a good light !
You'd known him a month when your DDad died, so he was around when your life was turned upside down - you'd think he'd have more understanding and empathy.
Him feeling so negatively about your DB and indeed your relationship with him also worries me that he could be controlling.

chumrun Mon 25-Aug-14 09:52:44

I wouldn't say there's anything wrong with my self esteem to be honest! But I can tell the difference between a sincere apology and a fake one and I believe his was sincere; the question is what to do about it.

I do care about DP: the relationship hasn't been long but I am not young (was 32 in May) and obviously in the time since I've met him we've been through a lot.

The main issue is that he doesn't mind me seeing my brother but would prefer not to be forced into social events with him - I get that! But I also am worried that this will massively hurt my brothers feelings - he's stuck at home while I am living the life of Riley - and also having time for them both won't be easy - I'm stretched as it is to be honest.

OP Your DP's behaviour has red flags all over it. I'd suggest you re-post this on the Relationships Board, where there are some very wise ladies who can help you with this.

You've only know this chap since April, and he's whining about your house being a shrine, saying he's sick of hearing about your history. He's not respecting your need to grieve, and as I posted earlier, it looks like he's trying to make you choose him by trying to drive a wedge between you and your brother.

He won't get any better than this, he seems so selfish.

StillStayingClassySanDiego Mon 25-Aug-14 09:54:36

Your boyfriend sounds a nasty, jealous type.

16 weeks into your relationship; goes nuclear when you suggest something, calls your house a shrine to your deceased parents then says he dislikes your brother?

I'd have reservations about continuing this .

DaisyFlowerChain Mon 25-Aug-14 09:58:30

I'd ditch him now. The shrine comments are awful and I wouldn't be able to forgive that. Neither would I be in a relationship with somebody who hated my family.

DesperatelySeekingSedatives Mon 25-Aug-14 09:59:50

he did calm down then and said sorry sorry sorry but if we were going to move forward he had to admit he really dislikes my brother sad and he thought at first it was cause brother was grieving but he just dislikes him.

Honestly? I'd cut him loose for this. There is no need to say that to you at all, he sounds an utter knob. That said, I wouldn't have wanted my DP's sibling to come on a weekend away with us so that we were a threesome, someone does usually get left out in those scenarios.

CatKisser Mon 25-Aug-14 10:01:02

But your brother can't be dependent on you for a social life forever, can he? To be honest, he sounds like he needs help and encouragement I to building his own life back up.

Guitargirl Mon 25-Aug-14 10:03:22

Red flags everywhere OP. Your boyfriend of a few months does not get to dictate to you over your relationship with your brother or what your house looks like. The comment about the 'shrine' was cruel and in very poor taste.

I have the same sort of thing with my little brother, we lost our parents when we were teenagers and it had a understandably massive impact on us. Ive gone on and married and had children, DB hasnt, however he is very much part of my family, comes on holiday with us, stays most weekends etc... When I met DH he `got` it and supports my Brothers relationship within our family, they are like brothers themselves now. I dont think I could have been with someone who would have tried to compromise that tbh, it was very important to me, my brother and I have been through something that has bonded us for life and I value that heavily.

I would ask you to think whether you think you can comprimise your relationship with your brother and whether you might feel resentful of you partner in the years to come.

AskBasil Mon 25-Aug-14 10:06:20

Chumrun at 32 you are young.

You sound as though you're scared to be without a relationship at 32.

Better to walk alone than badly accompanied and this guy really does sound like bad news. Don't ignore the red flags.

Peekingduck Mon 25-Aug-14 10:17:23

I agree with others, this DP doesn't sound as nice as you think he is. However, should you meet someone else in the future, I think you should maybe consider that you can't involve your brother in everything you do. If you form a good relationship with a life partner then it's perfectly reasonable that you should be able to have time and holidays as a couple.

MsJupiter Mon 25-Aug-14 10:23:26

I would agree with those who said that is very concerning re your boyfriend's cruel words but I do understand that maybe it was an outburst rather than showing true colours. He has obviously supported you through a great deal during the early stages of your relationship and has possibly suppressed how he was feeling due to (rightly) putting you first. However, I would use it as a first warning and any further outbursts like that would be endgame.

I think not taking your brother on your weekend away is reasonable but if the relationship is to continue, your boyfriend needs to understand that your brother is and always will be a big part of your life. You don't want to end up in a situation where you have to choose between them. I think you should explain to your DP that particularly while your DB rebuilds his life, you will be seeing a lot of him so they need to find some common ground.

Having said that, for your brother it won't be healthy to be so reliant on you, so if possible you should encourage him to re-engage with the world. Hopefully he is getting some counselling/therapy already but socially it sounds like he needs to find a way forward. That's his responsibility, not yours, but as you are already quite involved it is something you may be able to help with so that he can stand on his own two feet. Volunteer work, developing an interest, pursuing friendships.

Finally I hope you are getting the support you need, so soon after the death of your father you will be dealing with a lot yourself. Don't let the needs of these two adult males stop you exploring and expressing your own feelings and grief in a healthy way.

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