DP's pushy friends and family(53 Posts)
Had to nc for this as I think someone involved is on here... sorry. Don't want to drip feed but will try to keep it short.
DP and I aren't married yet. We have been together 4 years and are very happy. We bought a house last year and are working on our careers before having children. It's a conscious decision.
We are both 27. We have spoken about kids and marriage and will get to them when we are ready (which is not yet). In my opinion, this isn't anyone else's business but ours.
DP is from a naice nuclear-style family is a naice village by a rather expensive town - public schooled, sunday schooled etc etc - all very lovely. He has two younger sisters who both still live near home (we dont) and still many close friends that he went to school with.
In the last two months, one of DP's sisters got married and the other one got engaged straight after. Pretty much all of DP's old "home friends" (i.e. friends he went to school with - I think people remain very close after public school maybe?) are married or engaged. A couple aren't, but 90% are, and there are a lot of them.
Every single time we see these people, or his sisters and their partners, the conversation turns to marriage. This is most likely because so many people are engaged, but the conversation almost always turns to us. I am so sick of people asking me why we're not married, making comments like "oh well it'll be you two next" and "you should get a move on" etc. We saw the friends a couple of weeks ago and again this weekend for bbqs and the talk has now graduated to them actually planning what we would have as our wedding venue and how I might get round my family issues for it. I should also point out that last time we went to see DP's family, his sister actually made me try on her engagement ring to see what ring size I was! No amount of telling her it was pointless would appease her. After that, her husband, a doctor no less, told me (direct quote) - "as a doctor, I want to tell you that you should have children within the next 7 years or I wouldn't be able to tell you to continue trying in all good conscience... for the sake of your health".
DP lets all of this wash over him. I try to turn it into a joke as much as possible, but I have now started to feel very uncomfortable and pressured. It's our decision and I feel like we're being held to a standard that everyone else thinks is correct and are being judged for not agreeing!
I try to speak to DP about this, but he is so blind where his family and friends are concerned. He did admit that they went too far this weekend when a friend made the comment that "you better get married soon or we will all have kids and we wont stay at your wedding past 8pm as we'll have to go home", but he wont say anything to them to stop it.
I have told him that, next time, I am going to say something (not sure what yet but it will be fairly cutting if they push me as far as they did this weekend). He says I will cause awkwardness and its not meant to be mean or uncomfortable etc. So MN jury - AIBU to want to tell them to fuck the hell off?
Nah - tell them to butt out and find something interesting to do with their bored married lives.
I think you should say something. It's obviously annoying you. Be polite but firm. It's really none of their business
They mean well, I'm sure it's very irritating but not worth a fall out over.
You should have just replied "Ha ha either that or you'll all be divorced by then and we won't be able to invite half of you because no one will want to sit next to their ex wife and her new flame!!"
How annoying but sounds like they're just trying to be friendly and show an interest. Just don't get sucked into any conversations and try and change the subject. It would be a shame to cause friction. Are you having to see them very often?
Cuntycowface - I wish I could say that but half of them are devout Christian so I'm not sure I would go down so well!
Do they mean well though? They also spend quite a lot of time slagging off where we live (i.e. "oh it's so far away, it's in the middle of nowhere - people must hate having to visit you") so I'm not sure they mean so well...
They don't mean well. They just want to have a snide dig because you're not doing what they are - and therefore aren't validating their life choices.
I like hearing about people who are happy with their lives and their choices. You and your DP sound lovely :-)
You need to woman up a bit
How did you manage to sit through a conversation about your 'wedding venue', without either telling them straight you have no immediate plans to marry, or changing the subject entirely?
Yes it's annoying but the less attention you pay to them, the quicker they'll get the message.
juliej - that's certainly what I think but DP disagrees... sigh
Can't see that anything too unreasonable from anyone in this scenario. But his family do sound like hard work so I hope you learn some coping mechanisms as when you do get married and have children they'll just find another thing to nag you about.
WorraLiberty - I know, that was actually to my shame. I tried to turn what they said into a joke and back on them to keep it light - i.e. "well as lovely as a piss up in a brewery sounds I think you lot would drink it dry"... you know stuff like that.
I should have been more forceful before now, but DP gets very very defensive where his friends and family are concerned and I just couldn't be arsed to have the fight...
And I do try to change the subject but they're like dogs with bones! You cant change it too much because as some are engaged it all turns back to their plans and then soon comes back round to us in a vicious cycle of irritation...
Do you think your DP might be planning to pop the question to you soon? Perhaps he has asked his friends and family to put some feelers out to find out if you are ready and would say yes? The trying on the ring to find out your ring size seems particularly suspicious.
Are you sure this is what you want to marry into? You are going to have to say something and get your DP to support you otherwise you face years of snide and judge comments about your lifestyle, your children - or lack of, your home, your jobs etc etc. Frankly, if your DP doesn't understand that this is upsetting to you, you are facing a long, lonely ride ahead.
I think you should maybe just brush it off with something like "oh no not that boring conversation again!" and then change subjects.
I would love to tell you it stops if you get engaged but in my experience it doesn't. You get hassled on the following :
- when are you getting engaged
- when are you setting a wedding date
You'll have a period of respite up to your wedding with all focus on your wedding arrangements
-as soon as you are married you will be asked when you are having a baby
- if you have a baby once they are about 1 you will be asked about having a second
The "oh no not that boring conversation again " can work on all of these for years to come.
This is annoying but I actually think it's quite common when you hit a certain age/stage in your relationship. People like other people to make the same choices as them, it validates them.
I would just smile and nod, and disregard!
By the way I am still very close to all my (non public) school friends . Public school educated DH barely sees his!
I wouldn't take any if their comments personally. Ifbi didn't want to talk about it, I'd half jokingly tell them 'oh give it a rest. I can't think about it at the moment'
Sahkoora - no definitely not! of that I can be 100% sure!
Unexpected - yes, I think you're right. He is coming round to the understanding that it is annoying me, but i agree that he needs to get over this defensive mechanism that kicks in the minute anyone mentions a family member or friend in a negative light.
Lindy - thanks for that, Appreciate the honesty. And I think it's going to have to be the new tack, though I cant guarantee I have enough patience to say it in a non-aggressive way!
I love cuntycowface's suggestion!
Being married isn't the b all and end all!
And as your pushing you to have kids- how dare they!? What if you have been trying to conceive for years with no luck? What if talk of babies and 'oh when are you two going to have a family?' Is like a knife in your heart?
Its no ones business, they don't mean well, they are being braggy by bringing this up the whole time.
I don't think they mean anything nasty by it. I agree they are validating their choices. When I was 27 my friends chatted a lot about getting married. Then babies were spoken about for a few years. We're all back to normal now (!). We would have found two people who were sure they were right for each other waiting to get married a bit strange. Kids, yes, I can see why you'd delay that, the marriage not so much. I'd wonder if one of you were hedging their bets, or if you were one of those people that was all about making one big day perfect.
I think you will find you socialise a lot less with these people as your lives fall out of sync anyway. You may well find them more annoying when they have young children. When their children are older and they are getting their life back on track they'll find yours annoying!
I think the public school thing might be a bit of a red herring. The public school set I know have all married and had kids much later than others I know, mostly it seems so that the woman could have an established career first.
It's all really rude, and you need to get a few good teflon-style responses lined up: "Call me hopelessly modern but we'd like to choose when we get married, that's IF we ever get round to it!" <tinkly laugh> Or something ruder as others have suggested.
However that doctor was off the scale rude and unprofessional .
I had my first baby at 35 and talked to my GP at 39 to discuss trying for another. Direct quote - from my female GP – "Of course you can, you have every chance of getting pregnant again, I had my second at over 40, go for it." Plus handed me lots of advice about a healthy diet and lifestyle for TTC. Which worked, btw.
petalunicorn - why is waiting to get married so strange to you? (i) I have no family money so we would be paying for our own wedding and must therefore save, (ii) we are busy people (busy city jobs) so we dont want to plan one yet and (iii) it would be quite a lot of hassle anyway because my family don't get on, so to be honest it's not something we feel the need to do right now. Why on earth is that so strange or unusual?
See I just felt the need to justify that to you...
CatoftheGreenGlades - thank you for that! I thought DP's BIL was pretty unprofessional too. I actually asked my own GP about it when I last saw her and she said pretty much the same as yours. She said "you're only 27, why on earth is anyone saying such things to you now?"
Thing is, I cannot say anything negative about DP's family without an almighty row. Granted, he usually backs down in the end but it's such a faff to have the argument.
Just as background - he gets so defensive because a few years ago they all supported him through something that was pretty huge and that they could have turned on him for... so he has a lot of loyalty. Though I think it's now misplaced...
I wouldn't question you at all if you said you weren't interested in marriage, I think it's the fact you talk as if you will be doing it one day that gives an opening for them to say "well why not now?" etc. When I wasn't married it was because I didn't want to be married. So I do find your approach a bit odd, but I wouldn't push you on it. Why not just say we're going to think about it when we're 30, or whatever?
I would not, if I had my time again, have waited till quite so late in life to start trying for a family tbh. (not that you're late, I have a decade on you!) Had no idea how hard it would be.
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