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Need some perspective....excluding boyfriends/spouses at family events


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I am unclear regarding how much planning has already gone into this birthday dinner:  whether a date, time, and place have already been set and discussed among all involved.  Those details would probably influence my approach, but I would lean toward trying to speak to DD and say:

 

"I have been really busy and overwhelmed recently and would like to have a quieter, intimate birthday gathering.  So, I would prefer my birthday dinner celebration just be DH, You, your brother, and sister this year.  Can we plan on picking you up at 5:30pm on XX to go to XX?"  

 

But then I would have to be prepared if she made the choice not to come.  

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Invite him but act like you normally do.

If you're lucky he will refuse to go.  If not, maybe you still can have a good time.

 

I was thinking this as well but I know it's not so easy.

I was somehow struck by how many people this man controls and he is not even part of the family yet.

So others have suggested relevant responses regarding your dinner next week but I would probably try to figure why he is allowed to manipulate family dynamics to the point where nobody seems comfortable anymore.

Is this the daughter who has some health problems? Are you weary of saying / doing something to potentially jeopardize their relationship? Are you willing to tip toe around on eggshells if your dd marries him?

Maybe I am going way too far with this - after all you just asked how to tell him to stay away from a dinner...:)

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How is he manipulating someone's birthday party?  What action has he taken to do this?  All I have heard is Tap would prefer for him not to be there (I have not even heard that an invitation has been issued and accepted or rejected.)  

 

Did you read the whole OP?

 

He already came to her birthday.  He doesn't want Tap to talk to him.  He comes to a family event celebrating someone he doesn't like and apparently is able to tell another grown adult not to talk to him. I don't know why Tap acquiesced because that's ridiculous, but...it's ridiculous!  And so now she doesn't want him to come to the dinner because she wants to have fun and not feel awkward about being given the silent treatment from an adult who doesn't like her and doesn't even have to come to celebrate someone's birthday he doesn't like. And, apparently, his behavior causes Tap's DD to be subdued and not able to have fun either.

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What is the chance your dd complained bitterly to him about what happened to her when youngest dd became part of the family? Could that be why he has such a hatred of you? And he just uses the excuse your mean to him to not betray her trust? It just seems so odd for him to dislike you so.

If there is any chance of that being the case, I think it should be discussed with the dd (without the boyfriend being present,) because if she's acting fine with Tap but then turning around and complaining about her to the boyfriend, that's a big problem that needs to be addressed and brought out into the open.

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What is the chance your dd  complained bitterly to him  about what happened to her when youngest dd became part of the family?  Could that be why he has such a hatred of you?  And he just uses the excuse your mean to him to not betray her trust?  It just seems so odd for him to dislike you so.

 

 

Something like this could be part of the issue.  It seems like a very complicated family dynamic in play here. One child getting bumped out of the family home for the sake of another child is going to be very difficult.  I don't think there's an easy fix.  

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He doesn't want Tap to talk to him when he's around. In my opinion, that's being manipulative with his girlfriend's mother.

Yes, and it's also incredibly rude and nervy.

 

"I'll come to your house, sleep in your daughter's bed, and let you serve me breakfast in bed in the morning, but DON'T TALK TO ME BECAUSE YOU'RE MEAN AND I HATE YOU!"

 

Ummm.... what??????

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Reading through this thread, I think some family counseling/therapy would be good for Tap and her DD, as well as couples' counseling/therapy for the daughter and her BF. Obviously they are adults and can decide against it, but that would be a HUGE "red flag" to my mind if the BF refused to go.

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Spouses and fiances have to be invited to family gatherings. BF's and GF's who are not married or engaged don't. Where said BF/GF lives is irrelevant- they don't become part of the family until marriage is in the cards for the couple.

Yes! Thank you for saying this.It bothers me to no end that the last family picture we have with my husband's brothers in it also has a nephew's now ex-girlfriend in it. He (the nephew) was the only one who wanted her in the picture, which made it not truly a family picture. None of us ever imagined that it would be the last time we were all together and the last opportunity for a family picture, but it was. Family ties should be respected, IMO. Likewise, it is painful for me to hear my sister say that she doesn't consider my husband of 24 years to be part of the family. Her statement has caused real problems for me this past year.

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If it helps any DH and I felt obligated to invite That One Family Memember to our wedding reception. TOFM knew they were not really wanted and they made a BS excuse for not attending. I am pretty sure the only reason they did not grudgingly attend was because the rest of the family has gotten the message that I and DH do not want anything to do with TOFM and have stopped trying to force the issue.

 

My point is that he may feel pressure from your daughter to attend.

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He doesn't want Tap to talk to him when he's around. In my opinion, that's being manipulative with his girlfriend's mother.

I am sure there is a lot more to the situation than I am aware of.  But if he perceives that someone has been mean to him, stays away from the situation, the person approaches him and he does not feel that the situation is resolved and says "I would rather you not talk to me or about me" --I don't see how that is manipulation.  That is him speaking up for what he would like.  There may be other motives at play that make it manipulation.  There may be some self-preservation is he is indeed being treated in an unfair way.  There may be some immaturity on his part that he just needs to suck it up if he doesn't like the way his GF's mother treats him.  But, to me, it is a stretch to jump that is manipulation.  

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I would stop changing my behavior around him. You don't have to talk to him, but there isn't a reason you couldn't talk to everyone else.

 

Invite him but act like you normally do.

If you're lucky he will refuse to go. If not, maybe you still can have a good time.

My first thoughts were these. Be polite, maybe not talk to *him* since he made it clear he doesn't want you to, but otherwise quit trying to cater to his issues - instead, try not to let him and his issues change how you interact with everyone not-him. Act in such a way as to minimize the negative effects of his presence on the gathering, but without *enabling* the negative effects of his presence. Easier said than done, of course.

 

You are showing your daughter how to react when he acts this way. You are showing her that his emotional tirades and petulance should be catered to at the expense of one's own happiness.

I was in an abusive, controlling relationship for 5 years. I know my parents were afraid of losing any connection they had with me, so they said nothing. I wish they had called a spade a spade and not danced around the situation that the guy was an ass.

 

But this made me think: maybe doing your best to act normally in a not-normal situation sends the wrong message - that it normalizes something that *shouldn't* be normalized. That by quietly trying to minimize the negative impact of his issues - whether by catering to them or by trying to minimize their impact without catering to them - you are effectively saying that his issues and the way he is dealing with them is within the bounds of decent behavior. Which is being a good hostess if someone's not-normal situation is in the annoying range (like minor kinds of rudeness or thoughtlessness or general difficultness). But when trying to accommodate someone leads to enabling or normalizing someone's seriously wrong behavior (like abuse or ongoing life of crime) - well, maybe some things just shouldn't be accommodated.

 

Idk which one is which here, but I agree with other posters re: the existence of red flags.

 

So instead of me causing the rift between me and my dd I would make it be him being the one that says me or your mom instead of you saying to dd me or him. Makes sense?

And this resonates with me, too. Whether I ignore-without-enabling annoying issues, or openly point out unacceptable issues - I don't want to be the one to drive a wedge between me and my dd. I don't want to be the one to force the choice: me or him.

 

Now, I likewise don't want to bend over backwards to prevent *him* from forcing the choice - no teaching that the response to unreasonable demands is to cave lest even *more* unreasonable demands result.

 

But idk, somehow I want to be polite to guests, while not enabling annoying things nor ignoring unacceptable things, while also not being the one to force my dd to choose between me and the annoying-maybe-unacceptably-acting bf. Easy, huh. :grouphug:

Edited by forty-two
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I haven't read all the other comments but I agree with those that said that this will cause a rift. I personally would just try to cancel the dinner altogether if I really didn't want to eat with him. You could then have personal meals out with each family member one on one instead. Just consider how you would handle things if your mother asked for your dh to not visit. Also, what will happen when/if they have children. If you want to be in their lives you're really going to have to go the extra mile here. You can do it. Put on your big girl panties and pretend that it's not so painful. When these sorts of situation are done have a cry on your dh's shoulder.

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I am sure there is a lot more to the situation than I am aware of. But if he perceives that someone has been mean to him, stays away from the situation, the person approaches him and he does not feel that the situation is resolved and says "I would rather you not talk to me or about me" --I don't see how that is manipulation. That is him speaking up for what he would like. There may be other motives at play that make it manipulation. There may be some self-preservation is he is indeed being treated in an unfair way. There may be some immaturity on his part that he just needs to suck it up if he doesn't like the way his GF's mother treats him. But, to me, it is a stretch to jump that is manipulation.

I had to look up the definition just in case my understanding of the word is wrong. manipulate: "To influence or control someone in order to achieve a specific purpose, especially one that is unknown to the one being manipulated and beneficial to the manipulator; to use"

 

I understand you're walking in his shoes, trying to understand his point of view, but there comes a time when adults, however young, need to grow up. He doesn't get to dictate what Tap does, especially in her own home.

 

He comes to pick up her daughter and tells her not to talk to him. He makes himself a part of her family life and tries to control her behavior. This isn't a situation where they happen to bump into each other. He's in her space, her life, her family. If it isn't manipulative, what is it?

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I haven't read all the other comments but I agree with those that said that this will cause a rift. I personally would just try to cancel the dinner altogether if I really didn't want to eat with him. You could then have personal meals out with each family member one on one instead. Just consider how you would handle things if your mother asked for your dh to not visit. Also, what will happen when/if they have children. If you want to be in their lives you're really going to have to go the extra mile here. You can do it. Put on your big girl panties and pretend that it's not so painful. When these sorts of situation are done have a cry on your dh's shoulder.

 

Why does the boyfriend (not husband, not father of grandchildren) get to dictate that Tap has to go cry because she's being treated so poorly that she shouldn't have her own birthday dinner free of another adult demanding he not talk to her?

 

I'm sorry to be so passionate about this, but if it causes a rift because Tap shows her DD that she shouldn't be treated this way, that no one should be treated this way, then that may be what has to happen.

 

Someone should not have to cancel their own birthday celebration, or be miserable during said celebration, because another adult is being childish and wants to be mollified.

 

The way that Tap is telling this story is that this guy is HUGELY bad news for DD and the entire family. Someone needs to be kind enough to stand up to this person and tell them they can't treat other adults this way.

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Another option would be to do something just the ladies (instead of or in addition to family get together) to spend some time with DD without her BF (get pedicures, go to a tea room, catch a chick flick and have margaritas... something "girly") ... if she chooses not to come to family dinner you would still get to spend some birthday time with her.

 

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk

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I am sure there is a lot more to the situation than I am aware of.  But if he perceives that someone has been mean to him, stays away from the situation, the person approaches him and he does not feel that the situation is resolved and says "I would rather you not talk to me or about me" --I don't see how that is manipulation.  That is him speaking up for what he would like.  There may be other motives at play that make it manipulation.  There may be some self-preservation is he is indeed being treated in an unfair way.  There may be some immaturity on his part that he just needs to suck it up if he doesn't like the way his GF's mother treats him.  But, to me, it is a stretch to jump that is manipulation.  

 

It might not be strictly manipulation but it is immature.  Adults do not go around asking other adults to not talk to them.  You learn how to make small talk.  You pass the bean dip.  You might avoid them and hope that the person doesn't come out to the car where you are quietly doing so to confront you - this is where I sympathize with the bf btw - it sounds like he provides transportation for the dd so he had to come in the car but he was not allowed to quietly avoid the situation. 

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Why does the boyfriend (not husband, not father of grandchildren) get to dictate that Tap has to go cry because she's being treated so poorly that she shouldn't have her own birthday dinner free of another adult demanding he not talk to her?

 

I'm sorry to be so passionate about this, but if it causes a rift because Tap shows her DD that she shouldn't be treated this way, that no one should be treated this way, then that may be what has to happen.

 

Someone should not have to cancel their own birthday celebration, or be miserable during said celebration, because another adult is being childish and wants to be mollified.

 

The way that Tap is telling this story is that this guy is HUGELY bad news for DD and the entire family. Someone needs to be kind enough to stand up to this person and tell them they can't treat other adults this way.

"The way that Tap is telling this story"... is the key phrase here. We're getting one side of the story.

 

Many of us have been on the other side of the coin. My mother, when she was staying with us, got very upset at dinner because DH "told her to shut up". No, that's not what happened. He would ask the kids how their school work went, and before they could answer, she would say, "Oh, I didn't do any school work today." She knew the question was not for her, but she thought she was being funny. After several nights of ignoring this, DH told her to knock it off, and she took it poorly. And even though I was right there and heard the whole thing, she was completely convinced he told her to shut up, because that's what it felt like. And I'm sure if she told the story to a friend later, she would have said her son-in-law hates her and told her not to talk to him.

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that is a hard one.  If I recall, he was completely unreasonable and tends to easily take offense.  and your dd sticks with him. . .

 

 

on one hand, this near term event will be more pleasant without him. (boy do I get that.. . . . ),

othoh . . .. what if she has kids with him?  excluding him now, could make things far worse down the road.

this guy, for me, sent up flags that is you would try to exclude him, he'd start trying to prevent your dd from going to your family gatherings. . . and snowballing into something even worse.

 

I'm sorry.   can you assign someone to keep on top of him to make sure he behaves?

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Just take the family who lives in your house, or have a nice dinner out with your DH. I wouldn't even deal with it.

 

All these types of posts have me very worried about future girlfriends of my boys.

I would do this. And if you are a praying person, I would start praying that God would remove him from her life. You can remove yourself from him. If your daughter marries him she will have a big set of problems.

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Did you read the whole OP?

 

He already came to her birthday.  He doesn't want Tap to talk to him.  He comes to a family event celebrating someone he doesn't like and apparently is able to tell another grown adult not to talk to him. I don't know why Tap acquiesced because that's ridiculous, but...it's ridiculous!  And so now she doesn't want him to come to the dinner because she wants to have fun and not feel awkward about being given the silent treatment from an adult who doesn't like her and doesn't even have to come to celebrate someone's birthday he doesn't like. And, apparently, his behavior causes Tap's DD to be subdued and not able to have fun either.

 

What I read in the OP was that he was in the driveway in his car and Tap went to his car to talk to him.  It was my understanding that he requested, at that time, that she not talk to him or about him.  I got that he came to her house after that (if I remember correctly about a month later) for birthday cake, that Tap did talk to him at that point (asking about school). I did not get that he came to a family event and told another adult not to talk to him.  (Also I do not know why he came to the event--was it an attempt at a peace offering?  was it to support his GF?)

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Is this the same boy who lives with his parents, and your dd is living with them because she can't live in your home? On top of that, they are helping her through some medical issues so that she can continue to work and go to school?  If so, then it would probably be wise to be as gracious as possible to help out your dd and make this young man feel comfortable. I don't think there's much to be gained by intentional excluding him. 

 

I guess you could spin it as an opportunity for brother and sister to have some special time together.

 

 

IIRC from previous threads, Tap has already tried to be gracious. She's tried talking to him to work out the problem. She's tried talking to her dd to work out the problem. She's tried just being nice and not discussing the issue. She has done nice things for him. She has it seems, bent over backwards and he hasn't budged even a tiny bit. He just wants to be whiny brat and refuses to try in any way to make nice with a woman who might someday be his MIL. 

 

Tap, I think some of the previous suggestions to either only go out with those who live at your house or later take dd and ds out would be the best solution. There is no reason for you to be miserable at your birthday celebration. He already makes you miserable at other family events. You should at least get to enjoy this one.

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IIRC from previous threads, Tap has already tried to be gracious. She's tried talking to him to work out the problem. She's tried talking to her dd to work out the problem. She's tried just being nice and not discussing the issue. She has done nice things for him. She has it seems, bent over backwards and he hasn't budged even a tiny bit. He just wants to be whiny brat and refuses to try in any way to make nice with a woman who might someday be his MIL. 

 

 

 

I cannot draw these same conclusions, at least from the limited amount of info I have.   It seems as if he came to a birthday celebration.  Was that a step he was taking?  Was he trying to make nice?   I didn't hear that he was a whiny brat when he came.  I simply heard that Tap hated his being there.  I can't conclude that he refuses to try.   He may not be trying; he may be a whiny brat; I just can't conclude that from what was in the post. 

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Yes, and it's also incredibly rude and nervy.

 

"I'll come to your house, sleep in your daughter's bed, and let you serve me breakfast in bed in the morning, but DON'T TALK TO ME BECAUSE YOU'RE MEAN AND I HATE YOU!"

 

Ummm.... what??????

 

well, when you put it that way .. . maybe it's time to treat him like he's two.  he certainly sounds like it.

 

Yes! Thank you for saying this.It bothers me to no end that the last family picture we have with my husband's brothers in it also has a nephew's now ex-girlfriend in it. He (the nephew) was the only one who wanted her in the picture, which made it not truly a family picture. None of us ever imagined that it would be the last time we were all together and the last opportunity for a family picture, but it was. Family ties should be respected, IMO. Likewise, it is painful for me to hear my sister say that she doesn't consider my husband of 24 years to be part of the family. Her statement has caused real problems for me this past year.

:blink:

is she married?  divorced?  does she treat all in-laws this way?

when you celebrate your silver anniversary - will he be "family"?

is he from the wrong part of the country?  (wasp was an overly broad acronym/definition for my grandmother about who was acceptable, and who wasn't.  when she'd say someone was "not our kind of people", I had no clue what she meant.  I still don't' know.)

 

was she sure your marriage wouldn't last, so she wanted to get a jump on "he's not family", and now she's had that position for so-long, she can't back down without looking like a fool?

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I cannot draw these same conclusions, at least from the limited amount of info I have.   It seems as if he came to a birthday celebration.  Was that a step he was taking?  Was he trying to make nice?   I didn't hear that he was a whiny brat when he came.  I simply heard that Tap hated his being there.  I can't conclude that he refuses to try.   He may not be trying; he may be a whiny brat; I just can't conclude that from what was in the post. 

 

have you read the other thread?

 

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Just tell her.  "Bob doesn't like me.  I'd rather not feel like this meal is awkward and forced.  Please come alone."

 

It may mean she won't come either, but that's a risk you have to take.

:iagree: but she won't likely come and it will only hurt your relationship with her more.  The more you push him away the tighter she will cling to him even past what would be the normal extent/length of their relationship. 

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We're all wondering *why* does the bf keep showing up at stuff where Tap is present (like the birthday cake thing), when he doesn't like Tap and everyone involved knows it.

 

I was wondering if his coming to the birthday cake thing is his way of trying to be nice and keep up a relationship (such as it is)? Aka, does he feel like if he avoided doing things with Tap his *avoidance* would be seen as rude, as him rejecting his gf's family?

 

So maybe he grits his teeth and comes - just like Tap grits her teeth and invites him - *because* he's worried that to do otherwise would be rude. And just like Tap is dreading having to invite him, maybe *he's* dreading having to go.

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1) What is his problem anyway? Ugh. Please don't let him control your behavior. Be pleasant (I'm sure it will feel forced) around him and feel free to treat him as you would any other guest in your house. If he doesn't like it and doesn't want to come back, so be it. 

 

2) I don't think it's alright to have an all-family dinner and specifically ask for him to be excluded. 

 

3) I would schedule a time for you and ds and dd to go out together--just you three. If you keep it a small group like that, it won't feel like you're excluding people.

 

4) Having a group together for a birthday is fun. So, make a birthday dinner with another group of people. Maybe all girlfriends. Maybe two other couple friends. Maybe dd and a couple of your sisters. Just make sure it's a group of people you choose and you enjoy.

 

If you don't feel like you know enough people to ask, think of the people closest to you, even if you don't know them well. I think they'd be flattered to be included in your "inner circle". It's an excuse to branch out.

 

5) Chose a time to confront your daughter. She is dating a boy with a problem. Come up with your list of concerns with examples to back up your point. Don't nag, but purpose to have one conversation about this, so make sure it's thorough. Compliment his good qualities (again, you'll likely have to force yourself) but show her a balanced prospective including his good qualities and share your concerns. You're daughter's in an unhealthy situation and doesn't realize it yet.

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We're all wondering *why* does the bf keep showing up at stuff where Tap is present (like the birthday cake thing), when he doesn't like Tap and everyone involved knows it.

 

I was wondering if his coming to the birthday cake thing is his way of trying to be nice and keep up a relationship (such as it is)? Aka, does he feel like if he avoided doing things with Tap his *avoidance* would be seen as rude, as him rejecting his gf's family?

 

So maybe he grits his teeth and comes - just like Tap grits her teeth and invites him - *because* he's worried that to do otherwise would be rude. And just like Tap is dreading having to invite him, maybe *he's* dreading having to go.

 

All I could come up with was (besides the worried about being rude thing):

 

- he doesn't want to be stuck at his house with no peers (his family may be home but it's not the same)

 

- he is her driver?

 

- they are very codependent/clingy

 

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What I read in the OP was that he was in the driveway in his car and Tap went to his car to talk to him.  It was my understanding that he requested, at that time, that she not talk to him or about him.  I got that he came to her house after that (if I remember correctly about a month later) for birthday cake, that Tap did talk to him at that point (asking about school). I did not get that he came to a family event and told another adult not to talk to him.  (Also I do not know why he came to the event--was it an attempt at a peace offering?  was it to support his GF?)

  

I cannot draw these same conclusions, at least from the limited amount of info I have.   It seems as if he came to a birthday celebration.  Was that a step he was taking?  Was he trying to make nice?   I didn't hear that he was a whiny brat when he came.  I simply heard that Tap hated his being there.  I can't conclude that he refuses to try.   He may not be trying; he may be a whiny brat; I just can't conclude that from what was in the post.

I can understand why you feel as you do, if you haven't followed Tap's past threads about the boyfriend. This has been going on for a loooooooong time, and Tap has gone out of her way so many times to accommodate this young man, as well as to try to befriend him. That's why it may seem like some of us are jumping to negative conclusions about him -- without the additional details we know from past threads, I'm sure most of us would be agreeing with you. :)

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We're all wondering *why* does the bf keep showing up at stuff where Tap is present (like the birthday cake thing), when he doesn't like Tap and everyone involved knows it.

 

I was wondering if his coming to the birthday cake thing is his way of trying to be nice and keep up a relationship (such as it is)? Aka, does he feel like if he avoided doing things with Tap his *avoidance* would be seen as rude, as him rejecting his gf's family?

 

So maybe he grits his teeth and comes - just like Tap grits her teeth and invites him - *because* he's worried that to do otherwise would be rude. And just like Tap is dreading having to invite him, maybe *he's* dreading having to go.

This is where both parties need to explain their positions to Tap's dd, and the dd needs to figure out how to solve the problem. She is the one in the middle of all this, so she needs to analyze the situation and try to figure out some sort of compromise. If she doesn't, she will end up having to choose between her family and her boyfriend -- and that's exactly what it seems like the boyfriend is hoping she will do, because he keeps emphasizing his disdain for Tap, even while Tap is trying her best to find ways to get along with him.

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This is where both parties need to explain their positions to Tap's dd, and the dd needs to figure out how to solve the problem. She is the one in the middle of all this, so she needs to analyze the situation and try to figure out some sort of compromise. If she doesn't, she will end up having to choose between her family and her boyfriend -- and that's exactly what it seems like the boyfriend is hoping she will do, because he keeps emphasizing his disdain for Tap, even while Tap is trying her best to find ways to get along with him.

 

I agree.

 

Tap - gently - It seems as though your dd is trying to pretend there isn't a problem. Is she the type who hates confrontation? Is it possible she thinks if she just keeps bringing him around everything will sort itself out? She's really the one in the middle of all of this and it seems like she isn't trying to do anything to help. Is she afraid of losing either or both of you and that's why she won't let it come to a head? Or am I totally off base here? If I am, I apologize.

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In addition to the above recommendations, I would stop changing my behavior around him. You don't have to talk to him, but there isn't a reason you couldn't talk to everyone else.

Amen! Be yourself. He is acting rather juvenile - maybe pat for the course considering his age - but it seems that altering your behavior might prolong his resentment. Let your dd see your steady self that she has lived with all these years. Really, what example does it set for her - will she think she has to alter her own behavior to be acceptable to him?

 

If you've been hard on him/them, ease up, but I believe from your previous posts that you are demonstrating to him what it means to be someone responsible for caring for a loved one with peculiar medical needs. He needs to respect that without pitching a hissy fit.

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This is where both parties need to explain their positions to Tap's dd, and the dd needs to figure out how to solve the problem. She is the one in the middle of all this, so she needs to analyze the situation and try to figure out some sort of compromise. If she doesn't, she will end up having to choose between her family and her boyfriend -- and that's exactly what it seems like the boyfriend is hoping she will do, because he keeps emphasizing his disdain for Tap, even while Tap is trying her best to find ways to get along with him.

 

and why the flags for the future (to me) are so big.   i'd be afraid he wants the separation, then she will have no one in her corner.  (he thinks)

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I don't think there's a way to exclude a live-in boyfriend from family events without causing a rift.

 

And the reality is that the dynamic in your family has changed just by virtue of your daughter growing up and moving out to live with her boyfriend. That would be true whether or not the boyfriend got along with the family. Things will be different going forward, and that can't all be blamed on him regardless of how difficult he is.

 

Personally, I would try to avoid the rift. I would invite your daughter out to dinner just for the two of you. That way you get the time with her without him being "excluded".

 

The alternative is to let her know that he's not invited to your family birthday. She probably won't come and will view you as the bad guy going forward.

'

ITA with this.

 

Imo, one night of enjoyment is not worth the risk of the future relationship--with him and your dd. If he was already feeling slighted, whether he should have been or not, this will confirm it. If she ends up with him long-term, you will have likely created an ongoing rift for the sake of one night of enjoyment. 

 

If the event next week is already known, then expect him to come and ask dh to run interference for you if needed. If it's not, you could do the mother-daughter thing instead with her and do something else with ds and dh. 

 

Perhaps by next year, circumstances will have changed: dd may not be seeing him or the fences may be mended. 

 

ETA: I posted before reading very far down the thread and I have not read past threads. Initially the situation sounded to me like he had gotten his feelings hurt and was being immature---in which case, as a parent, I would suck it up.

 

However, if it is likely that he is abusive or controlling, I would still not use the bday dinner to deal with it, but I would be engaging in as many one-on-one conversations (dh or Tap) as dd will tolerate. She needs to know that her parents are concerned primarily for her sake in this relationship long-term. 

 

That being said, parenting young adults is the very hardest part of parenting. You love them the same as you did when they were little ones, but when they are 3 and about to run into the street, you have means of preventing that bad decision from being carried out. Once they are grown,  you have no control over any of the very serious decisions they are making. Sometimes you get some influence if the relationship is good and they are open to it, but a lot of times, you just support them the best you can and say nothing because that will make it worse. And it hurts. 

Edited by Laurie4b
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Tap has also mentioned her dd not coming around much lately, being hard to reach by text or phone and putting off getting together to talk. Maybe the issue is with the dd and she only comes around when she feels obligated. Maybe bf is irritated that she wants him to come along.

 

Or maybe bf's parents complain to him that his 18 yo gf is living in their home but feels their hands are tied because of her situation in her home. So he feels anger at Tap.

 

There are many reasons he may act the way he does not just an abuser or manipulator.

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Tap

 

You asked for honest opinions so I'm just throwing out different reasons for the issue. Not judging your choices or parenting. Just ideas on why he has such anger/dislike for you.

I'm not Tap, but I don't think your posts have come across as judgmental at all. I think it's good for Tap to hear as many different perspectives on this as possible. :)

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It's incredibly troubling that a teen with serious health problems may have to stay with a guy who's a problem because there's no place for her at home. Given that he's already the roof over her head, making her choose between him and you may seal the deal. What if she does see the light on him, what's she supposed to do then, start couch-surfing? I kind of can't believe you're worried about something like a birthday party while your daughter's young life is shaping up this way. I don't understand your decision not to have a place for your own child but I seriously hope you reconsider it.

 

ETA I agree with Callie it's also possible that this is a good/normal guy whose view of you has been colored by the situation of having to take her in.

Edited by winterbaby
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It's incredibly troubling that a teen with serious health problems may have to stay with a guy who's a problem because there's no place for her at home. Given that he's already the roof over her head, making her choose between him and you may seal the deal. What if she does see the light on him, what's she supposed to do then, start couch-surfing? I kind of can't believe you're worried about something like a birthday party while your daughter's young life is shaping up this way. I don't understand your decision not to have a place for your own child but I seriously hope you reconsider it.

I'm pretty sure the Dd stays with bf because of issues with youngest dd.

Edited by Callie
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This is where both parties need to explain their positions to Tap's dd, and the dd needs to figure out how to solve the problem. She is the one in the middle of all this, so she needs to analyze the situation and try to figure out some sort of compromise. If she doesn't, she will end up having to choose between her family and her boyfriend -- and that's exactly what it seems like the boyfriend is hoping she will do, because he keeps emphasizing his disdain for Tap, even while Tap is trying her best to find ways to get along with him.

 

The bolded is where I am having a bit of a disconnect.  I see nothing in Tap's recent post that the BF is emphasizing his disdain for Tap.  I do read in Tap's current post that she hates him being around and doesn't want him at her party (which I am sure he picks up on.)  What would the BF need to do differently at this point?  Come around more?  Not come around?  Say something in particular?  Not say something?  Has there been anything in the past month that indicates that he has disdain for Tap, especially that he is emphasizing it?

 

 

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I'm pretty sure the Dd stays with bf because of issues with youngest dd.

 

Well I don't know what those issues are but if OP and family can't make providing an alternative to the problematic boyfriend a priority, I don't see how she gets to complain about him being problematic. But then I don't subscribe to the common view on this forum that 18 is a full-fledged adult to whom parents have zero obligations. Assuming he is about the same age all the talk about "this man" is a bit laughable. Becoming the new instant home for a girlfriend who has nowhere else to go would be a lot for even the nicest guy that age to take on and is bound to lead to some issues.

Edited by winterbaby
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I remember your previous post (the gist, at least) and I have no real birthday advice for you.  But I am worried about your daughter. Maybe there are cultural differences, but if anyone told MY mother they didn't like her, they'd be out of my freaking life.  I DESPISE my mil, but I've never said anything of the sort to her face in 17+ years.  The dynamic I'm feeling from this post has me very uncomfortable.

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The bolded is where I am having a bit of a disconnect. I see nothing in Tap's recent post that the BF is emphasizing his disdain for Tap. I do read in Tap's current post that she hates him being around and doesn't want him at her party (which I am sure he picks up on.) What would the BF need to do differently at this point? Come around more? Not come around? Say something in particular? Not say something? Has there been anything in the past month that indicates that he has disdain for Tap, especially that he is emphasizing it?

The boyfriend has told Tap that he doesn't like being around her and that he intentionally avoids being near her. Tap has said that when he's with her family, his sullen behavior effects everyone. He has directly accused her of not liking him, and he doesn't believe her when she tells him that's not the case, and he is constantly perceiving innocent comments as being insults, to the point where Tap feels as though she has to walk on eggshells and analyze everything she says to him to try to ensure that she doesn't upset him or hurt his feelings.

 

Honestly, I think Tap is probably at a point where she doesn't know what to do. She wants to spend time with her dd, but the boyfriend seems to always inject himself into every possible situation, despite claiming he doesn't want to be around Tap. She doesn't complain about the boyfriend to her dd, because she doesn't want to cause trouble.

 

I think Tap is in a very difficult position.

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