Madeleine
Savvy October 2020

In-laws

Madeleine, on July 26, 2020 at 2:39 PM Posted in Family and Relationships 0 27
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My fiancé Has cousins coming to our wedding from out of state that he hasn’t seen in years. Because he hasn’t seen them in years, he wants to spend a couple days after our wedding to hang out with them. When he brought that idea up to me, I was horrified. To me, the days following your wedding or when you and your new spouse are supposed to be all alone and enjoy your newly married status. I brought this up to my mom, and my entire family including my dad thought that his idea was totally weird, and that everyone would feel awkward. They were surprised he would even bring something like that up because it’s so awkward and it’s just not done. I would feel very very uncomfortable hanging out with family members of his that I’ve never met, right after our wedding. I just wanna be alone with him in the days following our wedding. I made the mistake of bringing this up to his mother (we have a pretty good relationship) because I thought that she would laugh and shake her head at his ridiculousness. But she said she saw where he was coming from, and that she didn’t know what to tell me because she could see both sides. I was surprised that she would entertain his idea despite him being her son. I am torn because I don’t want to cause a rift in our relationship and make him feel like his family doesn’t matter, but I really really really do not want to hang out with his relatives when we’re supposed to be going on our honeymoon. Advice?

27 Comments

Latest activity by Alejandra, on July 29, 2020 at 3:10 PM
  • Yasmine
    Rockstar October 2020
    Yasmine ·
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    How long will they be in town after the wedding? Maybe you could compromise and spend a day with them depending how long they’re in town!
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  • Mindy
    Super November 2020
    Mindy ·
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    Are you guys going on your honeymoon at that time or did you postpone it due to covid?
    If you are scheduled to be somewhere else and he’s saying that he wants to spend time with his cousins instead of on your honeymoon, then I would understand.
    But if you guys aren’t scheduled to be anywhere, then it might be best to entertain that. It might be awkward at first but you may find that you actually enjoy these cousins. 🤷🏼‍♀️
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  • Philippa
    Dedicated November 2021
    Philippa ·
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    I think this is a matter of perspective. My FH and I talked about hanging out with friends and family before and after our wedding. The most important thing for us is bringing together the people we love. We will depart for our honeymoon three days after our wedding and are encouraging out of town guests to stay during that time (it's a destination wedding).


    While I don't find this horrifying, I can see how you do if you always expected to immediately spend that time with just the two of you. I don't have this expectation in my family - my dad even told me how he went with his brother on his honeymoon (how awkward would THAT be 😂). Can you suggest they come into town a few days before? Have him spend that time with them before your wedding?
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  • Elissabeth
    Dedicated March 2021
    Elissabeth ·
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    Like the previous poster said, if it's your actual honeymoon, I understand, if you have a honeymoon planned at a different time and just want to be alone just because, then I don't. My fiance's aunts and cousins are coming in from across the country and he only gets to see them rarely. With this in mind, we planned together to spend time with then while they are in town for a couple days, after all, they are my family now too. We are having a private brunch the morning after with just the two of us and not meeting up with his family until later that day so we have time to bask in our newly wed glow. Bottom line, if it's not your actual honeymoon, remember it's not just about you anymore, and his family is your family too.
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  • Madeleine
    Savvy October 2020
    Madeleine ·
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    For me, the time after the wedding is very symbolic of breaking away from your respective family and forming your own family. I would normally entertain any time with his family, which I have done numerous times. I have met nearly all of his important family and he has met very few of mine, so I already feel Like we have differing views on the important of relatives. Don’t get me wrong I love my family-I just don’t feel the need to spend lots of time with relatives outside my immediate family and I don’t feel obligated to hang out with them after our wedding. After all, they come to celebrate our marriage, not to hang out! This is just my viewpoint but perhaps it is a “different strokes for different folks” thing? We don’t have an official honeymoon planned yet (simply because of my school situation which is fluid) but if I get time off we want to go away for a week which I would like to do directly after the wedding. I was thinking a good compromise would be to have a vacation time planned next year to go and see said cousins? I’m not sure...
    Also I will add that I moved to his town where his family lives and am very very often with his family and relatives (he even brought me to Alaska to meet some of them last year) so I do get that his family is my family. I think our priorities regarding family are just different...
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  • Madeleine
    Savvy October 2020
    Madeleine ·
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    I’m trying to come up with a compromise... I don’t want to feel uncomfortable after our wedding and I think my feelings are valid. However, I don’t want him to feel like his opinion doesn’t matter either. I truly spend soooo much time with his relatives. Honestly he hasn’t met most of my cousins or has only briefly seen them yet I know almost all of his and have spent lots of time with them. Relatives are a big priority for him, while they aren’t for me. I’ve given a lot to honor this priority of his but in this instance I just don’t know if I can do it 😬 maybe if we can do it we could go visit them next summer or something?
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  • Elissabeth
    Dedicated March 2021
    Elissabeth ·
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    I think planning a time to visit could be a nice compromise! I would also suggest you and your FH sit down and talk about it, particularly about the ratio of time spent with his family vs your family as your reply came across as though you feel it's been uneven. Hopefully things will calm down in the world a bit virus wise and you can find time to visit both side of your families!
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  • Madeleine
    Savvy October 2020
    Madeleine ·
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    It has been very uneven, which I’m normally alright with... sometimes tho it seems like he’d rather spend time with his cousins than say, my immediate family (who are very important to me). His reasoning is that since my family lives an hour away it’s hard to go see them and his relatives are always around here. This isn’t a major problem for me normally even tho I do feel a little jipped at times. Thanks for the comments and opinions. I hope that we can reach an agreement that we’re both okay with!
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  • Ingrid
    VIP October 2020
    Ingrid ·
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    Honestly, guys don't think the same way we do. My guess is that he thinks you two have the rest of our lives to spend together and that he only has a couple days with them. The fact that he brought it up to you means that he cares about what you think and that's a good thing. I would explain how you feel and try not to take his thoughts personal. His intentions aren't to hurt you or feel like he doesn't care.
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  • T
    Expert May 2010
    Theresa ·
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    Out of curiosity, do you already live together? If so, has it been months or years? Again if so, he may not see the time after the wedding in quite the same way you do. He may feel that you've already broken off from your families.

    If you don't already live together, then I think you should explain your feelings to him the same as you did here. Men don't always see things in the same light as women, and he may need a direct conversation to realize how important this is to you.

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  • Jana
    Master October 2022
    Jana ·
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    It's common to get together with out of area guests prior to the wedding day. Night before events. Not everyone goes on a honeymoon the next day so that could be his logic. Sit down with him and work out a compromise.
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  • Elizabeth
    Master December 2016
    Elizabeth ·
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    The time after the wedding isn't symbolic of anything really. It definitely isn't about breaking away from family. Unless it's your honeymoon, I think you're overreacting. You have the rest of your lives together. He should get a couple of days with his cousins and these cousins are now your family too. You may feel awkward at first, but you kind of have to get used to them since they're now family. A wedding is about joining two families. The honeymoon is for the couple and if the honeymoon isn't happening right after the wedding, I agree with your fiance.

    Just as a sidenote: I don't think it's wise to go to his mom with your concerns about him or with the idea that she may agree with you against her son. That's the quickest way to ruin the mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationship.

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  • Elizabeth
    Master December 2016
    Elizabeth ·
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    Just wanted to reply to this because I think people giving advice are approaching compromise a different way than you. To me (and as someone above noted) a compromise would be, one or two days with the cousins, then the two of you. You mentioned here telling him you'll go visit his cousins next summer. I think that's unreasonable, honestly. You're getting married in October and his cousins are right there. It doesn't make sense for him to tell them to go home and he'll see them next summer when they're literally right there. If COVID has taught us anything it's that life is short and you can never count on doing things you put off til later. You and he have the rest of your lives together. Let him have a day with the cousins.

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  • J
    Master 0000
    Judith ·
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    We saw a lot of some family at other people's weddings in our year of dating, 5 month engagement, But many came for a 3 day weekend, and several who traveled 2000 -7000 miles for our wedding stayed in the area a week or more. So we did have a gathering of families including the 167 children we had not had at the wedding, the day after the wedding, all afternoon and early evening. And stayed on 2 more days to spend time with some of these people Fi or I were emotionally close to, who had come so far. The modern media image is that everyone goes away immediately for a spectacular honeymoon vacation. But that has never been true of everyone. Even a generation ago, in most rural areas, or where jobs or childcare did not permit travelling, the couple spent nights together, but socialized for days afterward with anyone who traveled to see them. Only financially well off people have always swept off on a honeymoon. So they are not having any strange idea. Lots of families now have a brunch or hang out with guests ( reserving nights for themselves) for a couple days, even if the couple does go away after a day or two. Whether or not you want to do it, is something you and your groom nee to work out for the two of you. But it is a common enough thing if some families or friends rarely seen travel a long way. So our cannot assume that your groom won't want what is familiar to him as much as you expected to go away. In the last decade, it seems more common , I think because so many couples have lived together, so long, before marriage.
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  • Madeleine
    Savvy October 2020
    Madeleine ·
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    Well I will still have to disagree about breaking off. I do believe our families are now joined, however, we are our own unit now. I’m a little worried to be honest that his attachment to his family will override our future family/relationship in things. To me, the new priority is the spouse. Especially after the wedding. Not that family doesn’t matter-but this is our time of becoming a family of our own. I see what you mean about traveling a little. However I just still would feel very weird hanging out with them after our send off etc. what might be better is if we spent time with them before the wedding vs after it. It would kind of be a win win I would think. It’s just a matter of finding time with all the hulabaloo etc. also-I see why you would think I’m unreasonable for saying we should take a trip out to see them. But let me give you context... we are young and have little money or PTO. If we got one trip every other year there is no way I would want to spend it on the other side of the country with his cousins 😂 so I was trying to be very generous with that suggestion since it would be our trip for the next couple years.
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  • Madeleine
    Savvy October 2020
    Madeleine ·
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    You are right I wasn’t going to go to his mom initially but I thought she would be understanding since she normally is about such things! I will just keep it to myself next time 👍🏻
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  • Jai
    Rockstar May 2020
    Jai ·
    • Flag
    To each his own. Personally, I'd want time alone with my spouse. I would plan a separate time to spend time with cousins. Def express how you feel to your FH and see if you guys can spend another day with them.
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  • Sinaya
    Devoted August 2022
    Sinaya ·
    • Flag

    I also want time alone with my new hubby after the wedding, regardless if our honeymoon is right after or not. Not sure if this has been mentioned already, but can the compromise be setting aside time to be with these family members a few days before the wedding? Not sure if they already have their travel plans in place, but that would be my preference.

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  • A
    Super October 2021
    Ashley ·
    • Flag
    I would see if the cousins could come to town days before the wedding instead of staying in town days after it. That way, he gets to spend time with his family and you get your alone time after the wedding.
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  • MOB So Cal
    January 2019
    MOB So Cal ·
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    I can see both sides. When we got married (a really, really long time ago... Smiley winking ), we had a lot of family -- especially on husband's side -- come from 2000+ miles away. Some of them had never been to California before and were excited to make it a vacation. Husband and I lived together at the time and planned to not leave on our two-week honeymoon until the week after the wedding. That gave us a chance to spend time with lots of our guests in the days following the wedding. Unfortunately, H's dad passed away suddenly not long after our wedding, so we've always been grateful we got to enjoy that time with him especially. When our daughter got married last year, there were again a lot of out-of-town guests, but most of them came in between 3-6 days before the wedding so everyone got to spend time together then. (But, daughter took the whole week off before the wedding -- you mentioned you don't have much PTO, so that might not be an option.) At the same time, you mentioned you and FH are young, and especially if you haven't lived together, I can totally understand that you're probably very excited to spend some time alone together in the days after the wedding. I've been married for 33+ years, and am nearly certain there will likely be lots of things in the coming years you and FH disagree about. It's going to be critical that you can talk through those differences in order to reach solutions & compromises you're both happy with. I also agree with pps who suggested you not take your disagreements to family members -- if you're already concerned about how involved your extended families are in your lives, that's just going to make that worse! Good luck working things out! Smiley heart

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