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Monday, 30 May 2011

My Parents are Horrible to My Boyfriend

Written by  Erin Donovan

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QI am 21 years old and a senior in college. I have been with D for two and a half years and we have lived apart for almost a year. My dad has said horrible things behind D's back but acts nice to him to his face. D does not ever want to be around him because he can't pretend that nothing ever happened. My family on that side also makes smart comments about D. My question is - what should I expect from him? Should I get angry when he doesn't want to go to Thanksgiving or just accept it?

AIt can make you feel really sad and torn when your family doesn't seem to accept someone else that you love. D has a right to feel hurt by their comments, and like they are being hypocritical when they act nice to his face. How did you expect him to react when you told him the comments that were being made about him? (Did you need to tell him, by the way? Sometimes, as much as it hurts, you need to keep some of this stuff to yourself, so that he doesn't get hurt. You need to consider what is or isn't worth repeating.)

Now, though, it seems pretty understandable that he wouldn't want to hang around a whole lot. Maybe he's feeling very self-conscious around your family, or angry, or hurt.

You said that D can't just pretend like nothing happened. I think that you, your family, and D need to discuss this. The holidays are usually not the best time to bring about family confrontations, so after Thanksgiving get your family and D together and explain that you can't just go on pretending that there isn't tension between the family and D, and that D feels very uncomfortable/hurt/angry about the horrible things said behind his back.

Tell your family what you expect from them; An apology, or at least not making the comments around you (so that you do not have to struggle with whether or not you should repeat it), or bringing to light any real issues they have about D and not being two-faced about it...

Whatever your (or D's) expectations or wants may be, lay them out on the table and hopefully you and your family can talk things out. Be prepared for emotions running high, though. You might not get it worked out right away, but don't give up on finding a way in the long run. I hope my suggestions can help you!

See Relationships - Peers / Crushes and Dating


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Erin Donovan

Erin Donovan

Erin Donovan's contributions were written in the year before she began college, at which time she was WholeFamily's Senior Teen Advisor.

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