Family Matters
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Meeting the BIL

well, I'm at work and I have a minute or two to post, so I thought I would pop in and get this off my chest in the hopes that I will not bring it with me to dinner tonight.

My sister, her H and her 2 kids are in town from out of state.  I am SUPER excited to see them!  I haven't seen my sister in almost 2 years, and although her kids stay with us for a while every summer, I can't wait to see them too!  The kicker is her H.

I've never met him, and after some of the things the kids have said about him, I'm not sure I really want to...  I'm nervous about it.  I want to go into it with an open mind, but the last time I talked to the kids they were furious about their mom getting married and that has influenced my thoughts toward BIL. (I've never called him that, wierd!). 

What if I don't like him?  What if he doesn't like me?  I know that it's not a  huge deal since they live out of state, but it would affect my relationship with my sister.  I just can't seem to wrap my mind around the fact that they are married and now their a package deal no matter what and I need to accept that.  I need to go into this meeting with an open mind, but all I am hearing in my head are the things the kids said about him...  Granted, the kids are 14 and 11, so I should be able to keep that in mind, but they're not stupid.  They're very well rounded and not prone to say things that aren't true out of spite. 

Anyway, just feeling wierd about the whole thing and wanted to vent a little.

Re: Meeting the BIL

  • Wait, you seriously subject your sister's children to your husband's abusive behavior every year?

    Why don't you think you will like her husband? What reasons do the kids have for not liking him? 

  • Go and meet the guy before you draw a conclusion. 

    It's hard to answer this based on all the other stuff you've posted, but I want to assume you and your sister learned a similar pattern from your parents.  

    Hope is not a strategy.
  • He manages to control himself when the kids are around.  (yet another example of how his behavior is abuse and not anger management, I know). It's the most peaceful time of the year. 

    The kids just didn't have much to say about him that was positive.  Just a bunch of he's lazy, he doesn't work, type comments.  He has since then gotten a job, but I also know that he's a recovered drug addict, and a convicted felon.  I don't necessarily want to hold his past against him, but that paired with the kids' comments about what a loser he is have kind of cast him in a negative light.  I know that my sister seems happy and I'm trying to focus on that.  I know plenty of people with "shady" backgrounds who have moved on from that to become great, productive members of society.  I just have a harder time letting this go because he's married to my sister.  She's the only one of my siblings that I ever really spent any time with (again, I'm number 3 of 5) until she moved.

    I don't want to put any unnecessary stress on our relationship because I really feel like I need her right now, and I truly want to believe that he is wonderful because I know that she deserves nothing less. 

  • I'm going to do my best to keep an open mind and meet him before I make any assumptions.  I guess I'm just nervous.  This is a very important person in my sister's life, so that makes him important in mine.  I also need to remember that he is her choice, he doesn't have to be mine.  It's not really that big of a deal whether or not I like him, I guess, I just really hope I do.  And I really hope he likes me to.  I feel like I'm getting ready for a job interview.
  • Ok, don't put pressure on yourself to get him to like you. You can't control his reactions, just your own. 

    And don't force yourself to try to like him. That's different than just trying to show up and be open.

     

    Hope is not a strategy.
  • imageZestofLime:

    Ok, don't put pressure on yourself to get him to like you. You can't control his reactions, just your own. 

    And don't force yourself to try to like him. That's different than just trying to show up and be open.

     

    Very true.  Thank you for reminding me of that.  I have a nasty habit of trying to make myself into someone else so people will like me.  I've seen that pattern more and more as I've continued with counseling.  I need to remember that whether he likes me or not is his decision.  Worrying about it will not stop it from happening if it's going to happen.

    I'm still nervous, but feeling a little better about it.  I think I just need to focus on the fact that I FINALLY get to spend some time with my sister and the kids, who I've missed terribly.

  • Your sister sees you and sends her kids, despite how miserable your dh is. If everyone has to put up with your assholio, you can put up with hers.

    Or, you could start by setting a better example for your sister and getting out of your abusive relationship, so she and her children can see that life does not have to be this way. I don't know how it is that both you and she have settled for what you've settled for, but there's better out there and you know it and so does she. And so do her children.

    SO SINGS MY SOUL *WHAM!* MY SAVIOR GOD TO THEE *WHAM!* HOW GREAT THOU ART *WHAM!* HOW GREAT THOU ART *WHAM!*
  • Have you ever heard the expression 'pot meet kettle'? Well, that applies here. You're concerned with your nephews' well-being with regard to a stepfather who may or may not be abusive, YET you are not concerned with your own child's well-being, knowing he lives in a household where his father IS abusive to his mother? Woman, you have more problems in your own home to focus on before you going off on judging others.
  • I feel like I need to apologize. I have apparently given you the impression that I was concerned about BIL being abusive which is not the case. My concern was truly more of a I hope we like each other concern. Just first meeting nerves, I guess. It was my first time meeting him and he is an impertant person in my sister's life and the lives of her children. I just wanted it to go well, and it did. While I do not see the two of us being best friends, I can see that my sister is happy and that made all the difference. Sorry about the wall of text, i'm replying from my phone.
  • Sorry, I meant to say important.
  • Sorry, I meant to say important.
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