Need help dealing w/family after death

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-08-2003
Need help dealing w/family after death
Mon, 12-15-2003 - 12:20pm
I feel like the worst person in the world for feeling this way, but I need help. I have been dating my BF for 3 years, his dad passed away about 6 mths before we started dating. His mom and sister have taken to me as if I am a part of the family and really did from day one. I have never lost a parent, mine went through a horrible divorce which changed my whole life, but I still have them, even though they havent spoken in 10 years. Anyway that was devastating to me, but I had to learn to deal with it and go on with my life. My BF and his family have had a hard time dealing with his fathers death. Immediately my BF & his sister who by the way are 29 and 26 now, moved back home to be with their mom. This happened when we first started dating and I thought had admirable that was that he would stop school & come home to help them. That was 3 years ago & nothing has changed as far as living status. That is only one of the problems, his mother & sister depend on my BF for everything, financial advice, companionship, everything you can imagine. At first I thought "oh what a close family" but now I cant stand it, they call him all the time and none of them can do anything family wise without involving the other. Plus whenever we get together for anything, his mom or sister end up getting upset about his dad and they start crying and ruin dinner or whatever we are doing and then turn to my BF for comfort. Hugging him or crying in his lap or on his shoulder, meanwhile I just sit there feeling very uncomfortable and not wanted. I dont know what to do in those situations and it happens alot. I tried to talk to my BF about it a while back and he said he didnt know what to do, he feels like he must be that rock for them, but then he never gets to grieve. Instead he tells me about it and I just feel helpless and I am really starting to resent his family for how they make him feel and me. I feel bad that I feel this way, but then just this past weekend we had a dinner to go to and his sister started crying in front of all of us, goes to my BF and just starts hugging him and crying for like 5 minutes. Her BF was there and he just sat there and so did I , then the mom joined in and I just wanted to leave. Which I did 15 minutes later very hurt myself for them making me feel like an outcast. I just kept my mouth closed , got in my car and went home. I am so tired of this and we are talking marriage and I dont know if I can live the rest of my life like this. I dont know what to do and I feel very bad that I even feel this way, but am I even the least bit justified and if so , what can I do? I dont know how to talk to my BF, he gets sp upset if I even bring it up, at one time about a year ago he told me I sounded jealous of his family. thats not it at all...please help
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-11-2003
Mon, 12-15-2003 - 3:14pm
Jennifer you should not feel guilty for feeling this way...AT ALL. Does he still currently live at home with his mom? If you are trying to bring this subject up to him & he cuts you off then you might want to stop talking about marriage at this least for now. His sister & mother need to let him live his own life and he needs to make them understand that. I am sure it's upsetting losing a parent because I never have but that is leaving you in a very ackward position as well as his sister's boyfriend. I would be very uncomfortable around their famiy when they acted that way as well. I think your boyfriend needs to hear exactly how you feel no matter how difficult it is for him to hear. This needs to stop! If this doesn't get worked out & you do get married this issue might never go away & you will resent the family over time. Please sit down with him & if he can't listen to you then he is giving into his family & pushing your feelings aside. If you are talking about marrying him he needs to be your equal & you should be able to talk to him about anything & express your feelings. I'm sorry you have to deal with this!
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-02-2003
Mon, 12-15-2003 - 4:52pm
First thing you need to do is stop putting the blame on yourself. You are doing nothing wrong by being a little resentful and stressed and EMBARASSED in front of total strangers when you go out. That is a little much. I'm sorry for them as well. I'm no therapist, but it sounds like they have not had closure and they need grief counciling. Almost 4 years? That is wrong to put all that on your BF- it makes him feel like he's a bad person for wanting his own life.

They sound like they are very dependent people, or at least very manipulating. They might try to emotionally blackmail him if he tries to, say, move in with you. Suggest grief counciling to your BF and maybe he can suggest it to them.

Hugs! Becca