Author Topic: Travel issues  (Read 8524 times)

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WillyNilly

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #15 on: February 02, 2012, 04:21:15 PM »
^ Wow.  I would like to echo the question about cultural norms we perhaps don't know about (all I can gather is you are not in Asia... since there is a trip to Asia planned...) but I can say I'd have a rather big issue with dating a guy who had standing weekend night plans every week that I was not invited to.  I  mean yeah ok I have dinner with my dad every week, but A) its a week night not a "date" or "party" night and B) my [past] BF's/[current] DF are welcome to come (generally they don't often want to - dinner with someone else's parents can get boring if too often, but they are welcome).

I will say though - at their house of course their daughter's picture is going to be displayed everywhere - she was their daughter!

Judah

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #16 on: February 02, 2012, 04:23:28 PM »
^ Wow.  I would like to echo the question about cultural norms we perhaps don't know about (all I can gather is you are not in Asia... since there is a trip to Asia planned...) but I can say I'd have a rather big issue with dating a guy who had standing weekend night plans every week that I was not invited to.  I  mean yeah ok I have dinner with my dad every week, but A) its a week night not a "date" or "party" night and B) my [past] BF's/[current] DF are welcome to come (generally they don't often want to - dinner with someone else's parents can get boring if too often, but they are welcome).

I will say though - at their house of course their daughter's picture is going to be displayed everywhere - she was their daughter!

Yeah, this wouldn't fly with me. 

OP, why did your boyfriend become these people's godson just because he used to date their daughter?  Their whole relationship doesn't make any sense to me.
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Petticoats

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #17 on: February 02, 2012, 04:50:58 PM »
^ Wow.  I would like to echo the question about cultural norms we perhaps don't know about (all I can gather is you are not in Asia... since there is a trip to Asia planned...) but I can say I'd have a rather big issue with dating a guy who had standing weekend night plans every week that I was not invited to.  I  mean yeah ok I have dinner with my dad every week, but A) its a week night not a "date" or "party" night and B) my [past] BF's/[current] DF are welcome to come (generally they don't often want to - dinner with someone else's parents can get boring if too often, but they are welcome).

I will say though - at their house of course their daughter's picture is going to be displayed everywhere - she was their daughter!

Yeah, this wouldn't fly with me. 

OP, why did your boyfriend become these people's godson just because he used to date their daughter?  Their whole relationship doesn't make any sense to me.

BF said godparents said their daughter have always wanted him to be a part of the family (marrying him) but since she past away, her parents asked to be his godparents so he can still be a part of the family.... :-\

Honestly, my feeling is that the sooner BF starts drawing some appropriate boundaries, the better. Letting this pattern get entrenched may mean that it'll be extra hard on both sides when he chooses to scale it back.

guihong

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #18 on: February 02, 2012, 05:02:10 PM »
Uh, no, that won't work.  If/when you marry your boyfriend, guess what?  He'll still be going over there on Friday nights without you.  Marriage won't suddenly make him change if he "can't" do it now.  In fact, whatever merely bothers you about him today will become the nucleus of your worst fights after marriage.     I would be hesitant about getting seriously involved with someone who you say is "proactive" but has allowed this situation to go on for a year.

I understand you might be from a culture in which it's hard to speak up, and where perhaps there's some duty or obligation involved in the godchild-godparent relationship, but since this bothers you already and you're in a relatively new relationship, you must speak up now before you even think of marriage.   



WillyNilly

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #19 on: February 02, 2012, 05:52:59 PM »
^ Wow.  I would like to echo the question about cultural norms we perhaps don't know about (all I can gather is you are not in Asia... since there is a trip to Asia planned...) but I can say I'd have a rather big issue with dating a guy who had standing weekend night plans every week that I was not invited to.  I  mean yeah ok I have dinner with my dad every week, but A) its a week night not a "date" or "party" night and B) my [past] BF's/[current] DF are welcome to come (generally they don't often want to - dinner with someone else's parents can get boring if too often, but they are welcome).

I will say though - at their house of course their daughter's picture is going to be displayed everywhere - she was their daughter!

Yeah, this wouldn't fly with me. 

OP, why did your boyfriend become these people's godson just because he used to date their daughter?  Their whole relationship doesn't make any sense to me.

BF said godparents said their daughter have always wanted him to be a part of the family (marrying him) but since she past away, her parents asked to be his godparents so he can still be a part of the family.... :-\

Its really great these people want to remain close to someone their daughter loved.  But what about what your BF wants?  How does his life - his current life - play into this situation?  Does he want to spend every single Friday night with them?  Does he want to keep you a secret from them (you mentioned up thread it took him 6 months to even mention he was dating)?  Does he want to spend every Christmas with them (or was this year a one time thing/their first Christmas without their daughter)?  What exactly is the timeline for stepping back the weekly dinners?  After a year of dating?  Not until you are engaged?  Not until you are married?  Maybe not until you have kids?  I mean when exactly do the weekly dinners you aren't invited to stop?  What if you date for another year?  And what if you have a year long engagement after that?  And what if it takes a year or 5 to get pregnant?  Are you willing to sit around and wait through years of this?

And what about what you want?  You and your BF are in a relationship together just the two of you.  His godparents/dead girlfriend's parents are not part of your relationship, and your wants are equal and important to his and their wants are not relevant in terms of your romantic life.

bah12

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #20 on: February 02, 2012, 07:34:26 PM »
I can't say that they resent me but I can tell that there is a barrier and we will never be close like normal godson's gf and godparents would be. They never bring up their daughter or put me in an awkward position but when I was over at their place for dinner/xmas, the daughter's pictures are everywhere. It's hard not to look but at the same time, it feels uncomfortable.  I once told BF that I feel godparents are treating him like a son-in-law more than a godson and he agreed. He said it gets 'scary' sometimes.  I personally don't have any problems getting close to them but the line between godson and son-in-law becomes blurry and it bothers me because I feel like my BF was someone's husband, but not really. Does that make sense?!

BF once said he is only doing what godson is suppose to do and nothing more. He said he will put me in first priority over them and if they ever ask for more, he will make it clear that he does not have any obligations (godparents has a son too) as a godson.  BF currently has dinner with them every Friday nights. He said he can't stop going but eventually when we get married and have babies, he will stop seeing them on a regular basis. He said he hopes I can put up with him for now and that he loves me too much to let me go.  Problem is, I don't know if godparents feel/think the same way.... (Note. I am not invited to these Friday dinners. This is for godparents, godparent's son and my BF only....)

My husband's first wife passed away and I will say that I assume, had she not, he'd still be married to her.  We also have a relationship with his former in-laws and they still treat him like a son.  I can admit that, at first, I was very apprehensive about meeting/interacting them.  It is uncomfortable.  Their wedding picture is still prominately displayed in their home.  No one is going to dispute that there's discomfort.  Sadness.  It's all very natural.  No doubt his ex in-laws wish that their daughter was still alive and the one coming over for dinner with my DH vs. me.

This is all very natural.  So, here's the deal:  You have to find a way to be comfortable with this.  He and his ex never broke up.  They now never will break up.  So, can you live with the inevitable question of "If she were here, would I be?" 

This is something that you have to work out both with yourself and with your BF.  The whole psychology of this situation can be maddening.  So first, you need to accept that the "if" didn't happen.  She's not here.  You are...and life moves on.  Once you get to the point where you can be ok with that, then you can work through the issue of her parents with your BF and not project your own discomfort on them (I'm not saying that you are doing this necessarily, but I did...so, it's just my perspective.)

If the parents really do resent you or feel like they have some say in who he chooses to date, then you absolutely have to take that up with your BF.  Personally, I don't think that there's anything wrong with him eating dinner with them once a week.  If your relationship has progressed to the point that you're talking about getting married and having kids, then I do think you should be invited as well.  They want to treat him like a godson/son-in-law, then fine, that comes with accepting his new relationship.  If they aren't doing that, then he needs to fix it...either by pulling back on the relationship or having a heat to heart with them.

I guess, what I'm trying to tell you, is that you shouldn't be concerned that telling your BF how you feel will push him into doing something...because him doing something has to happen.  The parents may not be so quick on the draw for him to move on...but that doesn't mean that they can't get there. 

My advice is to talk to him and tell him how you feel...not just about this vacation, but the whole thing.  He needs to be willing to help you feel comfortable and I hope that her parents can get to that point too.  I have a wonderful relationship with my DH's ex in-laws, but I'll admit it didn't start out that way.  Not because they didn't like me, but because they were sad.  They weren't trying to hurt me, but their sadness made me feel bad.  First, I had to get my head straight, then I was able to articulate to DH how I was feeling, who in turn was able to help smooth things over with the in-laws.  I've spent a lot of time with them...but I still haven't vacationed with them.  So, there is that. 

Eeep!

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #21 on: February 02, 2012, 08:00:17 PM »
^ Wow.  I would like to echo the question about cultural norms we perhaps don't know about (all I can gather is you are not in Asia... since there is a trip to Asia planned...) but I can say I'd have a rather big issue with dating a guy who had standing weekend night plans every week that I was not invited to.  I  mean yeah ok I have dinner with my dad every week, but A) its a week night not a "date" or "party" night and B) my [past] BF's/[current] DF are welcome to come (generally they don't often want to - dinner with someone else's parents can get boring if too often, but they are welcome).

I will say though - at their house of course their daughter's picture is going to be displayed everywhere - she was their daughter!

Yeah, this wouldn't fly with me. 

OP, why did your boyfriend become these people's godson just because he used to date their daughter?  Their whole relationship doesn't make any sense to me.

BF said godparents said their daughter have always wanted him to be a part of the family (marrying him) but since she past away, her parents asked to be his godparents so he can still be a part of the family.... :-\

Honestly, my feeling is that the sooner BF starts drawing some appropriate boundaries, the better. Letting this pattern get entrenched may mean that it'll be extra hard on both sides when he chooses to scale it back.

I agree with this. Truly, most adults don't even see their actual parents every Friday night.  Waiting until you are actually married/engaged or whatever is only going to make the situation more odd and uncomfortable.  While I don't think that it was the intention, this arrangement has actually put your BF into a weird sort of stasis.  In a way it seems like if he had married their daughter and then she passed away the situation would be easier to navigate, because then there are kind of expectations that eventually the widowed spouse (particularly if they are young) will eventually have a new relationship, etc.  Because the have created this false "godson" role, he is being treated neither as a widowed Son in law, or as an actual son (whose girlfriend would, presumably be invited to things).
"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." - Dr. Seuss

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #22 on: February 02, 2012, 08:57:27 PM »
^ Wow.  I would like to echo the question about cultural norms we perhaps don't know about (all I can gather is you are not in Asia... since there is a trip to Asia planned...) but I can say I'd have a rather big issue with dating a guy who had standing weekend night plans every week that I was not invited to.  I  mean yeah ok I have dinner with my dad every week, but A) its a week night not a "date" or "party" night and B) my [past] BF's/[current] DF are welcome to come (generally they don't often want to - dinner with someone else's parents can get boring if too often, but they are welcome).

I will say though - at their house of course their daughter's picture is going to be displayed everywhere - she was their daughter!

I agree with WillyNilly. To me, Friday nights are "Date Nights". Or at least "Hanging Out With Friends" nights. Not "Family Dinner Nights" (once in awhile might be fine, but not every single Friday night!)

I think that your BF either needs to scale back the dinners, or ask if you can be invited along too. If his late GF's parents are ok with it, why doesn't he invite them and you around for dinner at his place?

I also really like Bah's perspective on the situation too.

CluelessBride

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #23 on: February 02, 2012, 10:25:55 PM »
May I ask how long ago his previous girlfriend passed away and how long they had been dating?  That makes a difference in how I feel about the godparents.  I very much see bah's perspective. So while some of their actions may seem a little over the top, they might temper a bit with time. 

I also think it's important to remember that the trip was planned before you were in the picture.  He committed to it, and money (his or theirs) may be lost if he backs out.  So that gets a total pass from me.

The weekly dinners seem a bit much to me, but it may be part of the grieving process (theirs AND his).  And he may not be quite ready to give them up.  Which may or may not say something about his readiness to completely move forward.  So I guess my advice is to have a frank conversation with him about why he's not ready to give these dinners up until you have kids.  I know you don't want to push him into anything, but a conversation doesn't have to be a confrontation.  You don't even have to tell him to stop seeing them - just try to understand *why* he's seeing them.  And let him know that you understand if he is still grieving, but that you want him to be able to talk to you.

June24

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #24 on: February 08, 2012, 01:09:50 AM »
Honestly, 2 years is a long time. I would have trouble continuing to date this man as long as he keept going to these dinners without me. Nor would I be willing to attend these dinners with him every Friday night. He needs to scale back, IMO. This doesn't seem like a reasonable situation. Most people don't see their own parents that often, let alone a deceased ex-gf's parents.  :o No way would I consider marrying him while this is happening. He's not going to change after the wedding. I think you need to talk to him, and pushing for a change is exactly what you need to do. You describe him as proactive, but he actually sounds extremely passive, and he's being unfair to you. Who expects a gf to put up with this situation with the promise that it'll go away after you're married and have kids?! He might benefit from counseling. He may feel guilty or like he owes these people something. It's true that he can have any sort of relationship he wishes with them, but if I were you I wouldn't want to get sucked into what seems like a very unhealthy/co-dependent/weird situation.

Ceallach

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #25 on: February 08, 2012, 10:00:15 PM »
BF's ex passed away 2 yrs ago. They were friends since grade school but didn't start going out until 6 months before she past. BF said they liked each other but couldn't get pass the friends barrier to be together. Her sickness was diagnosed when she was young and it was known by friends. They lost contact for a couple yrs and when her sickness got worst, all friends gathered by her side and BF realized he missed a lot of opportunities before and thats when they got together. Since she past away, he's been having dinner at her parents house every week.

Oh wow, a 6-month relationship and they're clinging to him like their own flesh and blood 2 years later?  I think there are some definite issues there.   (Think about it this way:  If she hadn't died, but they'd broken up after a 6-month relationship, would it seem odd if 2 years later your BF was still dealing with the closure from the relationship and heavily involved with the girl and her family?  Yep!)  Obviously it was a painful situation, and he's somebody who she knew as a friend for a long time.   But the fact they're using him as their crutch isn't right.

Don't expect this situation to change unless your BF wants it to change and is willing to make some tough decisions about moving away from them on his own.  If the closeness is a deal breaker for you then it's better you know that now than later - because there's every chance that he'll never have the heart to break away from them.
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Shoo

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #26 on: February 08, 2012, 10:13:21 PM »
This relationship between your boyfriend and his deceased girlfriend's parents would make me, personally, so uncomfortable that I would not be able to tolerate it.  I certainly wouldn't be comfortable going on ANY type of trip with them, let alone a 3 week long trip out of the country.

You definitely need to have a discussion with your boyfriend about this.  I can't see why you'd object to him going without you, except for the fact that to me, it seems unhealthy.  To call them his godparents just seems weird to me.  The whole situation seems weird to me.  I'm sorry.

anonymousmac

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #27 on: February 09, 2012, 09:48:49 AM »
I believe that people can create whatever relationships they want to, and to me this sounds like more than "the parents of my ex-gf that I dated for 6 months."  Clearly the boyfriend and the parents consider themselves to be in the relationship of godparents and godson, and if that's what everyone wants, there's nothing wrong with that.  It's good to have people in your life who love and support you.

The problem I see is that it's difficult for josieh to figure out her place in all this, and it feels like the boyfriend is keeping these two parts of his life too separate for someone who's talking about marriage and children someday.

In your place, josieh, I'd start by asking about being included in these Friday night dinners.  If you and your boyfriend are an important part of each others' lives now, then you should be included.  Or, if your boyfriend doesn't consider you part of his "family" or wants to keep you separate and non-serious, then you deserve to know that too.

As far as the big trip goes, I'd tell everyone that I'm flattered to be asked, but I really want to get to know everyone better before making such a big commitment.  Ask about coming to these Friday dinners for a while, and see how the relationship with the godparents, and the overall situation, develops.  Then you'll have a much better feeling for whether you want to go on the trip, or let your boyfriend go without you for now.

I certainly wouldn't go on a three-week trip to Asia with a group of people with whom I'm too uncomfortable to attempt an evening's dinner.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2012, 09:51:31 AM by anonymousmac »

gramma dishes

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #28 on: February 09, 2012, 10:36:54 AM »
Josieh, I don't mean to sound negative, but I think this (BF and his "Godparents") is an uncomfortably too close relationship.  It sounds like maybe they're trying to replace their deceased daughter with this new pretend "son" and consider him to be a part of their immediate family -- maybe more so than even his actual real life parents. 

Honestly, if he doesn't have the ability to set some realistic and definite boundaries with them, I don't think he's anywhere near being man enough for you.

That certainly doesn't mean that he needs to cut them off entirely.  But he should be able to put you at the front of the line and make the choice between spending time with you or with them.  Right now, they're apparently usurping all his time and energy and he's letting them.

And to be honest, I doubt if they'll ever accept you.  Right now, they seem to view you as the "competition".  I truly sincerely hope I'm wrong.

Eeep!

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Re: Travel issues
« Reply #29 on: February 09, 2012, 01:22:02 PM »
Josieh, I don't mean to sound negative, but I think this (BF and his "Godparents") is an uncomfortably too close relationship.  It sounds like maybe they're trying to replace their deceased daughter with this new pretend "son" and consider him to be a part of their immediate family -- maybe more so than even his actual real life parents. 

Honestly, if he doesn't have the ability to set some realistic and definite boundaries with them, I don't think he's anywhere near being man enough for you.

That certainly doesn't mean that he needs to cut them off entirely.  But he should be able to put you at the front of the line and make the choice between spending time with you or with them.  Right now, they're apparently usurping all his time and energy and he's letting them.

And to be honest, I doubt if they'll ever accept you.  Right now, they seem to view you as the "competition".  I truly sincerely hope I'm wrong.

I agree with this - it really sounds like they are trying to use him to fill the void their daughter left.  Which is really not healthy for anyone involved.  Would he spend this amount of time with his real parents? If the answer is No then that tells you something right there.  And the fact that you aren't invited is a problem.  Because he should be doing something about that one way or the other.  I think - if this was a normal parent/son relationship - most sons would just say "Hey mom and dad, Fridays are really Josieh and my date night so I'm gong to have to cut back on these weekly dinners" or something similar.  If he did that and they said "Well she should come too!" then you could go from there. (I still think that weekly is ridiculous). But the fact that he hasn't said this means that he either (1) really likes/needs these weekly visits, which is something you will have to figure out if you can deal with or (2) is operating out of guilt.  If it is the latter, that just isn't healthy for him or your relationship and it needs to stop.
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