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I am completely baffled by my brother, feel like I'm losing him.

(6 Posts)
YanknCock Mon 15-Jun-09 19:19:56

Not sure where to put this, as it's sort of appropriate for the religion and AIBU topics...

Talked to my mom last night and she was saying she was a bit hurt that my brother never bothered to tell her he'd converted to Judaism. She only found out due to joining facebook (though she knew a while back he was taking classes).

I know he put something about it in a status update because my DH told me, but he didn't say anything to me directly either. I understand that because when I last saw him 6 months ago I expressed a bit of skepticism about his reasons for the conversion. He maintains it was all his idea, that his fiancee hadn't pressured him, but when asked if he'd be converting if he wasn't marrying a Jewish girl, he admitted it would not have occurred to him. We were both raised Catholic, and I suppose I was operating under the delusion that we both had rejected organised religion. I think I'm a bit disappointed in him really, or maybe just sad because we've gone such different directions in this aspect.

Anyway, the part that has especially baffled me....when we discussed his conversion, he was saying how modern everything was, how philosophical, how it all made sense to him. Then I find out that as part of his conversion he's gone through a 'bris'. Being American, he was already circumcized a few days after birth, but to convert, he had to go to a Jewish doctor, taking his future FIL with him as a 'witness' and get his knob sliced! Apparently just enough to draw blood, but still!

I don't know why, but that particular bit of knowledge has really depressed me....I just can't believe he's going through with all of this, especially the knob-slicing. I know I have to keep my gob shut and not screech 'WTF?' next time we speak. Given all the reservations he expressed about this girl and their future together over the last five years, I will be quite surprised if the marriage lasts. I know he's come very close to breaking it off multiple times. It does seem like everything has to go her way and she's quite immature and spoiled. It seems like she's had a plan for her life from day one, and he's just expected to fit into it all without regard for anything he wants.

The wedding is in a few weeks. I can't go due to my pregnancy, and I have to say I'm sort of glad. I'm not sure I could put on a happy face all day knowing about her bridezilla antics and feeling like she's pushed him into so many things (the wedding, the religious conversion, his current job, buying a house).

I am probably being very unreasonable, and none of it is any of my business. He's 27, not a kid, and he's not asked me (recently) for my advice. I am just sad because I feel like I don't know him anymore.

Tinker Mon 15-Jun-09 19:30:37

No advice but do empathise about how sad it can feel when your brother marries someone who you'd rather they didn't. It's difficult having your close relationship spoiled. A religious conversion would be pretty hard for me to handle as well if they'd already rejected religion. No advice sorry.

<You've a very appropriate name for this thread though wink>

YanknCock Mon 15-Jun-09 19:33:31

<snurk> I knew I should have namechanged for this! grin

No advice needed really, am happy with empathy.

LadyG Mon 15-Jun-09 21:44:34

Very hard-but you'll have to get over it if you want to maintain close relations with your brother and for his children (if and when they have them) and your children to be close etc.
Religion is such a personal thing and I am sure can be very difficult to explain ones feelings to a 'non-believer'.
I am not religious but my PILs are very staunch Catholics-we married in a Catholic church and both children are baptised Catholic essentially to keep them happy-they are lovely people and perhaps that is why I had no qualms about doing so. Do you think you could try to put aside your feelings and be supportive ?

LadyG Mon 15-Jun-09 21:47:17

Although to be fair my in-laws have never asked me to draw blood from an intimate part of my anatomy...

YanknCock Tue 16-Jun-09 12:32:05

Don't get me wrong, I'm supportive if people really feel like they need religion in their life. In my brother's case, it all seems quite forced and frankly a bit cult-like with the genital mutilation.

As for my feelings about his bride-to-be....I'm trying, I really am, to hide them. It is hard though, given that my brother has come to me so many times in the past expressing real doubts about her and asking what he should do. The last time, he said something to the effect of 'maybe we'll end up splitting up a few years down the line' (after marriage).

I know he's depressed at the moment, and has been for quite a while. Every step towards this committment has been a struggle (her pushing, him resisting), but he has to be the one to extract himself if this isn't really what he wants. I dunno, maybe once the giant white wedding production is over.....

Until then, I know I have to keep my mouth shut. Much easier from 3,000 miles away (they are in the U.S.).

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