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To Think My DP's Parents Should Want To Meet Mine After 2 Years+ Of Us Being Together?!

(18 Posts)
Scorpette Sat 20-Jun-09 20:55:46

Sorry, bit of a long one, but bear with me (please):

I've been with DP for 2 1/2 years, living together for one. Although we're not really bothered about getting hitched just yet, we are totally devoted to each other, have an amazing relationship and will be TTC as of next month (YESSS!) - and this commitment is obvious to anyone who knows us.

His family live 5 hours away, whereas my parents live 20 mins away (my brother lives abroad). We do see my parents more, of course, but we go see his family several times a year. I get on really well with his family and they've really made me feel part of the wider family - but therein kinda lies the problem: they see me as 'one of them' now. In all the time we have been together, not once has either of his parents asked a single question about my family. In fact, when I mention them, his parents politely change the subject or look obviously uninterested. I was once at their house and had some photos of my family and offered to show them and they refused! I have tried to bring up the topic of both families meeting and they bluff the issue, pretending that they don't understand what I'm asking. DP is v shy, even with his parents and stays out of it.

Another weird factor is that in a year of living together, they have never once visited our home! Although they live far away, his father commutes up here to work 3 days a week in an office 4 miles away from our place and has never once come and they both have other relatives who live near us, but despite invitations, they have never visited. I just can't understand them! They are those sort of stiff-upper-lip, keep-it-all-inside types; DP can't ever remember hearing them say 'I love you' or getting a hug or a kiss, and expressing emotions was frowned upon - but they are a very kind, warm family nevertheless. My family are the opposite - very open, very tactile and demonstrative; we talk about anything and everything and wear our hearts on our sleeves. However, I think both set of parents would all get on well as they are otherwise similar in class, opinion, tastes, interests, background, etc.

I can understand DP's parents being reserved and not wanting to be smothering of their sons (he's the middle of 3), but surely it's a bit weird to not want to ever see our home or meet my folks? After this long, it can't be blamed on shyness or 'biding their time' to see if our relationship was The Real Deal?! Whatever the reason is, it's insulting! I feel as though not wanting to meet my family is an unspoken way of saying 'if we join with them, then it'll mean your relationship is for keeps... and we're not sure we like that idea'. angry sad


foxinsocks Sat 20-Jun-09 20:58:05

I think you need to respect other people's family weirdness

they just sound a bit shy and socially awkward

I wouldn't force the issue

I have been together with dh for 10 years this year, married for 9 and we have 2 dcs and my parents have never met his nor have any of my family met any of his

foxinsocks Sat 20-Jun-09 21:00:57

and also, I think you are thinking about this too much.

This isn't about them not approving of you. They obviously ADORE you as they have let you into their little family circle.

ABetaDad Sat 20-Jun-09 21:39:46

Scorpette - my parents have never visited our house in 25 years. They have been asked many times. We always have to go and see them. This rings a bell too:

"They are those sort of stiff-upper-lip, keep-it-all-inside types; DP can't ever remember hearing them say 'I love you' or getting a hug or a kiss, and expressing emotions was frowned upon"

PILs and my parents have met once for 6 hours at our wedding they spoke for 5 minutes. I have got used to it now.

onepieceofcremeegg Sat 20-Jun-09 21:45:39

fox if you don't mind me asking did the 2 sets of parents attend the wedding?

Fwiw I come from a fairly unusual family background. My mother is quite pushy in terms of meeting other family members, e.g she is desperate to meet sil's family (my brother's dp's family) but they are not up for it at all

OP I would just say to leave it if it is obviously such an issue to them.

CMOTdibbler Sat 20-Jun-09 21:46:19

Dhs parents and mine have met 3 times - once before our wedding (organised by us), at our wedding, and last Christmas when we had all of them to ours. DH and I have been together for 14 years.

Don't worry about it

foxinsocks Sat 20-Jun-09 22:02:13

no, we went off to a registry office and did it in secret (didn't tell a soul!), largely because it would have been such an issue to arrange everyone to be there together and I knew mine would cause problems so we did what was easiest for everyone!

onepieceofcremeegg Sat 20-Jun-09 22:09:20

DOn't blame you fox, wish we had done that.

mil was rather rude to my mother just after our wedding, she is a real snob and made some very "put downish" remarks to prove how superior she is to my mother.

2rebecca Sat 20-Jun-09 22:12:46

I think it's odd them not wanting to see your house. I don't think it's odd them not wanting to meet your parents. Why should they? What difference will it make? If you get on well now they might not get on together and that might make things worse.
My parents never met any of my boyfriend's parents, they had their own friends and just met my husbands' parents when we got married.
My parents are quite religious and weren't keen on visiting us before we were married either.
I think it's good they are interested in you and not your family. Imagine if you hated your family they they were insistent on meeting them to check you from "good stock" or some other such twaddle.
When my kids have boy and girlfriends I won't be bothered about meeting their parents. If they get married or have children I will , but that's more nosiness on my part rather than feeling it's important for my childrens' relationships.

Flibbertyjibbet Sat 20-Jun-09 22:14:01

My ils have met my parents but only once or twice at the dc's parties.
DP and I have been together 10 years and I can count the times they've been to our house on one hand.
My parents are happy to be sociable with his parents if they come across them at an event for example, but would not want to start socialising with them because they just don't see the need.
ILs on the other hand like to make friends with everyone and have a full on friends relationship with bils ils which I find wierd. but my ils think its my family thats wierd.
Wierd or just different? Its just a matter of opinion.

foxinsocks Sat 20-Jun-09 22:15:56

how awful for you onepiece .

Portofino Sat 20-Jun-09 22:21:00

I've known my DH for 20 years, and been married for 4. I have only met my MIL once. She seemed a bit bemused but asked for a photo of dd to add to her GC collection on the sideboard. I have met all but one of his siblings though and been to many family get togethers.

DH is very close to his brother, who we always stay with in the UK and he and SIL have been to stay with us....Some family dynamics are weird though. I really wouldn't worry.

My Ex MIL for example - only had the one son, who she controlled doted on, and even he had to make an appointment at least a week in advance to visit her...hmm

OldLadyKnowsNothing Sat 20-Jun-09 22:23:06

My son and his GF have been together for about two years, and their baby is due next month. They don't live together though, he lives with me and she lives with her mum, just a few miles up the road. I have seen her mum once, when I was waiting to collect DS and GF at her house one day, and we had a brief chat, but that's maybe a year ago (DS has his own car now). I don't know why we've never visited each other, I've simply never thought about it. I'm not the most outgoing sort, but I'm not socially-inept (usually blush), it's just never seemed all that important.

LightShinesInTheDarkness Sat 20-Jun-09 22:27:49

DH and I have been married 19 years. His parents did not come to our wedding. FIL died 2 months ago. My parents had never met him or MIL. Sometimes it just works out that way.

beanieb Sat 20-Jun-09 22:32:57

I think it's weird that they would 'refuse' to see photos, but then maybe they just politely declibed because they find it boring?

I don't think it's particularly weird to shy away from an arranged meet up though. I have an old school mate who keeps trying to arrange for me and my OH (WHo she's not met) to come around so she can meet him. I find it strange and just put her off because I don't really do that kind of thing.

Scorpette Sat 20-Jun-09 23:01:08

All this is v. reassuring. I guess because my family is so sociable, demonstrative and interested in other people I can't get my head round the reserve of DP's family. I went to the wedding of DP's cousin last year and some of the people who had married into the family (DP's mum is 1 of 10) took me aside to welcome me to the fold but very jokingly told me that it's like being part of a cult, because they're very into their own family but aren't interested in the outside links. Everything revolves around DP's mum's family - DP's dad's lot don't get a look in. Guess this is part of the same thing.
I feel sorry for my folks, though, because they don't understand why DP's lot refuse offers to meet up - when my folks got hitched, all my Grandparents became best friends and even used to go on holidays together, so I think all of us have been imagining that would be the case with the parents of whoever me and my brother hooked up with. At least they are nice, well-adjusted and like me and DP gets on famously with my side.

beanieb - me and DP were looking at the photos with his mum right next to us and when she asked what they were of and I told her, he asked if she wanted to see one and held it towards her and she pushed it away saying 'no, no!' as if scared and pretended to go do something! It wasn't like I was forcing overstuffed family albums on the woman!

I think the weird thing is them not wanting to come to our home. Perhaps they don't want to appear interfering but are going about it the wrong way? They visit this area regularly (see bit about his dad's job in my original bit!) but just won't visit. Our relationship is as solid and committed as any marriage and his parents aren't old-fashioned or religious or anything like that. They gave us £300 as a moving-in gift, which was great.

I guess I need to not take it as a snub and try to understand that some people aren't bothered about being big parts of their grown-up children's lives. Perhaps when I DO conceive (everything except legs crossed!), they'll want to visit then...

OldLadyKnowsNothing Sat 20-Jun-09 23:04:39

And then you'll be able to moan about how awful and interfering your MIL is. grin

Scorpette Sat 20-Jun-09 23:44:56

You know it! wink

Ha, I guess her not wanting to be involved might work out well when we've got DCs!

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