Visiting relatives of SO


#1

I’ve been dating my g/f for over a year. I spend a lot of time with her family – holidays, birthdays, and other events, but she rarely spends time with my family. I realize my family is farther away, I don’t see them as much as she sees hers, and she always has a reasonable excuse (work, with her family, etc.). However, she is somehow still able to schedule time to visit far-away friends that she isn’t that close to and the time imbalance is really getting huge. I have done a ton of stuff with her family (went to far away relatives for several days over thanksgiving, multiple days at her parent’s house over Christmas) and she did very little with my family (nothing for Thanksgiving, couple hours at a Christmas party that my mother wasn’t able to attend). There are also several big events coming up on my side that it doesn’t look like she’ll be attending (wedding, baptism, my family’s celebration of my birthday). Again, she has valid excuses for all three of these, but how is it that it is always so much easier for her to schedule time with her friends and family? How much should I push the issue? We are not engaged yet but will be soon.


#2

First of all, how old are you and how old is she?

Next question, might your family be like any of the families in the movie “Four Christmases”? Is your family Catholic?

Those questions being asked, I would have to say that all other things being equal–that she has not just graduated from high school or anything and your families are more or less the same, then my conclusion is that she is not mature enough to get married if she is completely one sided about this. Trust me, it will only cause misery. I have a relative whose wife would not come to his brother’s wedding because “they could only afford one ticket” --and it wasn’t a destination wedding or anything like that, yet they go on Mediterranean cruises. So yeah, she might have a problem, and you just have to decide whether it’s something you can live with forever! I will pray for you guys. :slight_smile:


#3

age -- she is mid twenties and I have 5 years on her

I don't know anything about "Four Christmases"

religion -- my immediate family is both Catholic and Protestant. Most of my extended family is Catholic. Her family is loosely practicing cafeteria Catholic and she is probably the most religious of any of them (attends church regularly and we sing and pray together at home).

I don't think this has anything to do with religion though. I think I basically just need a way to gently nudge her to make more sacrifices for my family.


#4

This is a wonderful period of courtship when both find out about each other and their families and friends. To the point....if she's finding excuses now, it will not get better after marriage. It will continue. And you will not like it nor will your family.


#5

Ok, if it doesn’t have anything to do with religion, then that’s good. The thing is, if she cannot make small sacrifices now in courtship, she will not be able to make the bigger ones called for in marriage. If you want to “nudge” her, nudge away, but you most likely won’t get anywhere. If she can manipulate you now, she always will. :twocents:

“Four Christmases” is a heathen comedy which portrays families that one would obviously not want to visit on the holidays.


#6

Tried asking her what the problem is?


#7

Yes, there’s always the direct approach! That’s what I mean, as opposed to “nudging”. :smiley:


#8

clears through “Darling, you have a good excuse each time, but that’s literally each time. There must be something to it. Care to tell me what it is?”

I suppose if you manage to say it without sounding accusatory or plaintive, you have half the job done. Or more.

The key to dealing with women in sensitive situations is to make it clear you aren’t accepting the million excuses but at the same time you aren’t accusing them. :smiley: Sometimes it works, that is. :stuck_out_tongue:


#9

Well I’ll talk to her about it tonight. Just to be clear, it isn’t a case of her actively looking for excuses so much as a failure to clear her schedule for my family. She does a wonderful job of spending time with me and her family and friends, I just don’t think she puts as much effort into making time for my family. She is a nurse and has to work on weekends sometimes so scheduling can be difficult.

I love her deeply and think she is the best thing that ever happened to me. I’m not worried about this in the long term like aicirt suggests. I just wanted some advice on how to discuss it with her. In the past, I’ve mainly just focused on getting her to clear her schedule for specific events, and recently she got frustrated with me when I kept asking her if she had switched work days with one of her coworkers so she could go to the wedding with me (I’m supposed to RSVP by Dec 30th, but still don’t have an answer from her, even though she is trying to find out if she can switch days.) Her mother will be having her own birthday celebration when my parents want to celebrate mine and once again she is working the day of the baptism. It wouldn’t bother me as much if she could have at least spent more time with them around Christmas and Thanksgiving.


#10

Have you tried reminding her gently and frequently that she’ll soon be a member of your family? Has she gotten to know your family? Has your family reached out to her? It might take invitations coming directly from your mom or dad - “We’d love you to be there; can we count on you?” Maybe underneath she’s just uncomfortable in less-than-familiar circumstances and continues to gravitate to those she knows?

It is important and it’s not just an annoyance. A lot of marriages get off-track because of tensions over in-law issues. There needs to be a balance and fairness or you’re already starting out with a problem.


#11

NoAvailableName, I don’t want to tell you there’s a problem where you see none, but it does seem extreme on its own that you’d go with her family to their relatives for a couple of days on a holiday, really, much more so when it’s one-sided. I don’t want to read too much into it, but if you’d rather spend the time with your family than with hers, then you and she don’t need to spend each and every holiday together. You can stay with your family when she goes with hers. This assuming we aren’t talking about some special circumstances like her family being extra-friendly to you etc.


#12

Well I talked with her last night and it went fairly well, although awkward at first because she was already upset about other non-relationship related things so she was rather sensitive about it. She of course had a different view of things and thought I was the one that didn’t spend enough time with my own family. She also suggested that she was about to bring up the topic of these events if I hadn’t.

I just got a text today saying that she was able to switch with another nurse, so we will be going to the wedding together and she might even be able to make some of the other birthday/baptism events.


#13

She sounds reasonable. I had got the same vibes, which is why I suggested you shouldn't feel bad about deciding to spend time with your family instead. The world won't come to the end if a couple of days pass without your spending time together. Lesson I learnt the hard way, as I insisted on accommodating so that we could have time to spend together, whereas I was free to other things... Guess if the shortage of time together would have become apparent, the lady itself (or the previous one etc.) would have made the time. It kinda hurts not to be on the same page about it, though. Anyway, don't give up on your family or on your duties or your hobbies for a girlfriend more than necessary and more than both of you are willing to sacrifice on a reasonably equal basis.


#14

She might just feel out of place around your family because she hasn’t spent a lot of time with them and doesn’t know them that well. Hopefully, that will improve after you attend the wedding together.


#15

Thanks for all the prayers and thoughts.


#16

[quote="NoAvailableName, post:12, topic:181276"]
Well I talked with her last night and it went fairly well, although awkward at first because she was already upset about other non-relationship related things so she was rather sensitive about it. She of course had a different view of things and thought I was the one that didn't spend enough time with my own family. She also suggested that she was about to bring up the topic of these events if I hadn't.

I just got a text today saying that she was able to switch with another nurse, so we will be going to the wedding together and she might even be able to make some of the other birthday/baptism events.

[/quote]

If it's true about your family events, she may be right. Do you ever suggest "Oh, you have a day off, lets go visit my parents for dinner?"

Also, she may be able to arrange gatherings with her friends around her schedule, not her schedule around her friends.


#17

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