I don’t know how to begin; I believe my issue is not really big, but it has stolen my peace of mind. I am about to get married. I have known this family for a long time and they are generous people and arehighly educated, as is my family. We don’t have any usual family conflicts since we live in different cities. Everything is going fine, so I think the problem could be in my head only. Still, it is affecting me a lot and has me worried.
I believe I am more caring towards my in-laws than they are towards me. I like forming deeper relationships without formalities and I know it doesn’t happen overnight, but I feel that they don’t love me as their own. There have been several incidences where I felt taken aback by the way my sisters-in law acted or perhaps unknowingly ended up saying things that hurt me deeply. It happens sometimes when I go to visit them or they come over. Since I have started noticing it, I always find something to feel glum about. Now I don’t like going to meet them because it has grown uncomfortable for me. I think they can feel it too.
No matter how much I try to act casual and try to start all over again, they build more walls around themselves. I liked doing little things for them, and I still do. And they also do, but it’s not from the heart and it doesn’t bring me joy anymore.
The problem is I have grown to become uncomfortable around them. I find his family very fake, or indifferent. Recently, my sibling passed away and I had hoped they would be there for me like a family but they were no different than everybody else who had come and gone. It broke my heart. People say I have to be good to my in-laws for my own well-being. I say why can’t I be good because they are my family? But then families stick together for love and true feelings. Between me and my in-laws, I believe it is one way traffic.
I feel mad at my sisters-in law for a lot of things and I can easily answer back to shut every one up, but the better side of me tells me not to. This has been accumulating inside me and, as a result, I don’t want to be nice to them as I feel I would be faking too. The thought of the upcoming wedding saddens me.
My fiancé is a very loving and caring person, older to me by four years. I have discussed this problem with him, too. He used to listen to me but lately I think I have begun to irritate him. He keeps on telling me it’s not true, but how can he view things from my angle as he's their son? My family, on the other hand, regards him as their own son especially after the recent death in the house.
I need advice badly. Please help.
Dear Unsure Girl,
You are an affectionate and caring person, and expect others to be like you. It’s your expectations that are possibly distorting your views. Just because your in-laws are different doesn’t mean they are not good people. You have known them for a long while, and have found them generous, and this means they are not mean or selfish. Building relationships, with in-laws, require time and patience. It’s good that you like to do things for them because you consider them family, but you do it because you want to. Have they asked you to do anything for them? If it’s simply in your nature to do things for people you consider family, then you should do it without any expectations. If you do things because you want them to reciprocate, it means you are not doing anything out of the goodness of your heart. It’s just a ploy to make them reciprocate. Your heart was broken because you were expecting more from them when your sibling died, but they came to be with you from some other city. Does this not show they care about you?
My dear, once you are married and actually become a part of their family, they will trust you more. But, only if you remain your normal, warm self.
Your fiancé knows his family and loves you, so trust him and stop pestering him about how his family should or shouldn’t behave. You will only end up making him believe that you are like all other girls with preconceived notions about their in-laws. Prepare for your wedding with a clear heart, give your in-laws a chance and maintain a positive frame of mind. Good luck!