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Do you call your in laws? Parents?

DH and I are not phone people. Well, other than for texting :-) I rarely call my own mother unless it's an emergency - we visit in person every other week or so and send Facebook messages in the meantime. 

DH's mom and sister have been giving him crap about never calling. Even his grandfather apparently complained to his mom behind our backs that DH never calls him (DH never did in his entire 30 something years of living, not sure why he thought DH would start now). While they were on this complaining session they apparently complained that now that DH is married he never spends holidays with them. DH is hearing this secondhand from his sister. I want to say this is completely untrue - we alternate Thanksgiving and Christmas with the families (spending Thanksgiving with one set of parents, Christmas the other and swapping every year) and spend Easter with my parents and Mother's Day with his. We've tried to split them as evenly as possible. We've been married for six years so I have no idea why this is coming out now (maybe because DH's grandmother passed away a few months ago?)

Part of me thinks I should try to straighten things out, but DH just blows them off. WWYD? And, are we weird for not being phone people? (we never call each other or our friends either, I should mention  . . . and we're in our mid 30s, so it's not like we were of the texting generation). 

Re: Do you call your in laws? Parents?

  • It doesn't sound like they are implying you are responsible for this OR that you should try to fix it.  It's his problem, so don't worry yourself and make it your problem.  They are his parents, I would just follow his lead and blow it off too. 

  • image WendyGR:

    DH and I are not phone people. Well, other than for texting :-) I rarely call my own mother unless it's an emergency - we visit in person every other week or so and send Facebook messages in the meantime. 

    DH's mom and sister have been giving him crap about never calling. Even his grandfather apparently complained to his mom behind our backs that DH never calls him (DH never did in his entire 30 something years of living, not sure why he thought DH would start now). While they were on this complaining session they apparently complained that now that DH is married he never spends holidays with them. DH is hearing this secondhand from his sister. I want to say this is completely untrue - we alternate Thanksgiving and Christmas with the families (spending Thanksgiving with one set of parents, Christmas the other and swapping every year) and spend Easter with my parents and Mother's Day with his. We've tried to split them as evenly as possible. We've been married for six years so I have no idea why this is coming out now (maybe because DH's grandmother passed away a few months ago?)

    Part of me thinks I should try to straighten things out, but DH just blows them off. WWYD? And, are we weird for not being phone people? (we never call each other or our friends either, I should mention  . . . and we're in our mid 30s, so it's not like we were of the texting generation). 

    Honestly, you only mention that you visit with your mother often and then only mentioned seeing DH's family on a few holidays a year. That, along with you saying he "blows them off" makes me think that perhaps he IS not really keeping in touch with them- and it probably hurts their feelings!

     I agree with PP that it doesn't seem like they are blaming you- but they do seem to be upset that their own son isn't doing more to be in touch with them.

    Is there a reason DH doesn't do more with them outside of holidays?

    ** I do not have a relationship with my own parents but I am close to my in-laws, I talk on the phone with my MIL at least 3-4 times a week and we do lots of things together.

    DH calls his parents a couple of times a week, and also texts with he Dad a lot, mostly about sports :)

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  • image NewEnglandWifey:
    image WendyGR:

    DH and I are not phone people. Well, other than for texting :-) I rarely call my own mother unless it's an emergency - we visit in person every other week or so and send Facebook messages in the meantime. 

    DH's mom and sister have been giving him crap about never calling. Even his grandfather apparently complained to his mom behind our backs that DH never calls him (DH never did in his entire 30 something years of living, not sure why he thought DH would start now). While they were on this complaining session they apparently complained that now that DH is married he never spends holidays with them. DH is hearing this secondhand from his sister. I want to say this is completely untrue - we alternate Thanksgiving and Christmas with the families (spending Thanksgiving with one set of parents, Christmas the other and swapping every year) and spend Easter with my parents and Mother's Day with his. We've tried to split them as evenly as possible. We've been married for six years so I have no idea why this is coming out now (maybe because DH's grandmother passed away a few months ago?)

    Part of me thinks I should try to straighten things out, but DH just blows them off. WWYD? And, are we weird for not being phone people? (we never call each other or our friends either, I should mention  . . . and we're in our mid 30s, so it's not like we were of the texting generation). 

    Honestly, you only mention that you visit with your mother often and then only mentioned seeing DH's family on a few holidays a year. That, along with you saying he "blows them off" makes me think that perhaps he IS not really keeping in touch with them- and it probably hurts their feelings!

     I agree with PP that it doesn't seem like they are blaming you- but they do seem to be upset that their own son isn't doing more to be in touch with them.

    Is there a reason DH doesn't do more with them outside of holidays?

    ** I do not have a relationship with my own parents but I am close to my in-laws, I talk on the phone with my MIL at least 3-4 times a week and we do lots of things together.

    DH calls his parents a couple of times a week, and also texts with he Dad a lot, mostly about sports :)

    This.

    Any relationship requires both parties to compromise to some degree. Sometimes that compromise is around the platform on which you communicate. It sounds like his family are phone talkers. My mom is, too. We talk several times a week. My father communicates through my mother or on facebook. My late MIL was a letter person (she was deaf by the time she died). I wrote her a couple times a week. Email would have be easier for me, but it doesn't work for them, so I let it go.

    Perhaps grandpa thought your DH would assume more of an adult communication style once he was more mature and settled down. I found my own DH became a lot more family oriented once we were married. He was a 38 year old groom, so it wasn't like he moved from mom's basement to my house, kwim?

  • He's never really been that close with his family, and I do encourage him to call and suggest that we go out to eat with them, but he's usually "too tired" or has work around the house to do. There is some backstory with a really bad divorce where his mom said a lot of terrible lies about his dad, I wonder if he never really got over it, even though he says he's moved on. I guess I know it's *his* family, and they're not coming out and blaming me, but I feel like maybe they are and I feel guilty about that.
  • If they are just wrong about the facts - like holidays rotated/shared, then there is nothing for YOU to discuss or defend. It's obvious and fact-based.

    If they want more communication with their son/brother/grandson then THEY need to initiate it and/or figure-out what works for them. DH shouldn't ignore them or be "too tired" for them. But it is certainly THEIR relationship and communication to sort out. Not yours. It's extremely passive-aggressive of them to shift the blame to you, so don't take the bait. Wading-in now won't solve a thing.

    And your DH REALLY needs to tell them to not blame YOU for any of this crap. HE has to. 

  • I have to agree with Dallas, this sounds like an issue between your DH and his family. I would not get involved.

    If his family claims you don't spend time with them, but you are fair with holidays then I'd ignore it. Visiting and calling is a two way street, your DH's family could invite you two over if it really is bothering them this much. Instead they get a message to you via your DH's sister. They either need to talk to your DH and say what is bothering them or drop it, because being passive aggressive is an immature way to handle the situation.

    "Jeff, why are all the towels on the floor?" "Gravity, babe." " . . . Okay, true, but not what I meant."
  • My DH and I are not phone people, either. In fact, when my phone rings, I'll only answer it if it's DH, my mom, or sister. Everyone else goes to voicemail. I used to call my mom and sister about once a week each until texting became more prevalent. Now I'll text (or sometimes email) with each of them a couple times a week.

    Anytime someone complains about another person not calling, I always like to remind that the the phone lines work both ways. Unless your DH is ignoring calls from his parents, sister, and grandfather, perhaps they could pick up the phone and call him. While they are on the phone, they can always rib him about never being the one to initiate the call. Maybe if they take the initiative, he'll follow suit. If not, I don't blame your DH for blowing off the complaints he is hearing second hand.

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