Author Topic: How to respond?  (Read 3684 times)

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JoyinVirginia

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Re: How to respond?
« Reply #15 on: January 23, 2013, 02:36:36 AM »
Is your bf's family member doing the organizing married? Is this person not viewing you two as fully a social unit because you are not married? Yes, you are an established couple and should be recognized as a couple in invitations. But sometimes people may be upset if you are living together without being married. Could this be the attitude of the organizer?

bopper

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Re: How to respond?
« Reply #16 on: January 23, 2013, 09:22:16 AM »
Devil's Advocate:

You are not married to BF. So your children are not his step children.  Now you might think that your relationship is very marriage like and should be treated as such, but many people do not feel that way or don't even really know your step children since you say you don't see the family members that often.  They may think that if you have not taken the legal/social step to get married, you do not have that commitment or whatever and therefore they do not treat your relationship on the same level as being married.  So from their point of view they might say "Should I invite the kids (that I don't know) of the girlfriend of BF to the wedding?"  They may think that is too distant a relationship to warrant an invite. 

However, perhaps your BF could start asking "So and so's stepkids were invited to the wedding, why weren't Bobby and Janie?"
Or how does he represent the kids?  "These are my girlfriend's kids?" or "These are my stepkids?"
Perhaps they are taking their cue from him.


shutterbug94

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Re: How to respond?
« Reply #17 on: January 23, 2013, 01:34:37 PM »
I didn't expect them to invite my kids to the wedding. I totally understand not inviting them to a formal event like that, they are not blood related and don't know the bride and groom. My issue with the wedding was that bf was invited but I was not and we are a couple who lives together. I was his date at his son's wedding a few months before so there was no question regarding how he view our relationship

The issue with my kids and the family gathering is different.  It's never been a by-invitation-only event and lots of non-family members have been in attendance over the years. Because written invites were never issued before, I never realized that my children would not be welcome. Also, the whole "we don't know your kids" doesn't really work because this is the type of event where you would include people you haven't met but would like to.  Not inviting them is more like "we don't care to meet your children because we consider you to be temporary", just like calling and getting addresses twice but not once asking bf what is shutterbug's last name.

As for bf, he calls my kids his bonus children.  :)

Just for the record, my kids are teenagers so there is no concern that I have let them run wild or be unsupervised.  They've only been to two family events, both involving bf's son's wedding.

gellchom

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Re: How to respond?
« Reply #18 on: January 23, 2013, 01:50:54 PM »
I would need to know who the hosts were.  If it's your SO's sibling or parent, that's one thing -- if it's his second-cousin, among dozens, I would cut them some slack.  The precise status of our own relationships looms very large to us, but we have to face the fact that they just aren't that central to everyone else's lives, and they may not keep as close track as we'd wish.

That is one reason we have social (never mind legal) statuses including marriage and engagement; besides what they mean to the participants, they give clear signals to everyone else.

Today, we consider live-in boy/girlfriends to be in the must-invite SO category.  But believe it or not, your cousins may not remember who is and who isn't living together, especially if they are in another city.  For example, my daughter now lives with her (very serious) boyfriend.  But it's not like they sent out announcements about it, and they are in Israel.  So when my cousin in Oregon emailed me for our kidz' current addresses so she could send bat mitzvah invitations, I realized she might very well not even know this guy exists, much less the status of the relationship.  I decided to tell her and suggested she add his name to the invitation (very safe as they can't come anyway!).  If I hadn't, and if they lived closer and my daughter decided to come, I think she would have been fine to call them and ask if she could bring him.  I don't think it's even their living together that would suggest that she do that; it's that they are very close to getting engaged.  Her asking for them to include him would very definitely be seen as a signal of an imminent engagement, not as a statement on the current status of their relationship as a must-invite-together couple.

While I do agree that cohabiting couples should be invited as a unit, bear in mind that people who do not do so aren't necessarily disrespecting your relationship even if they do know that you are a serious couple and live together.  They may know one of those more rare, but not nonexistent, couples who do NOT wish to be considered a social unit -- one reason they AREN'T married.  So your choice not to marry each other may be taken, incorrectly but not necessarily meanly, as a signal that that is how you feel, too.

As to rude strangers -- that's all they are.  Ignore.  (My husband has a couple of times been taken as my father, as has my brother, even though they are respectively 2 and 4 years older than I am.  How do you suppose that made THEM feel!)

Hmmmmm

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Re: How to respond?
« Reply #19 on: January 23, 2013, 02:19:26 PM »
Your feelings of not feeling welcomed by BF's family are valid. I think they have demonstrated rather clearly that they do not perceive you to be a member of their family. What we don't know is why that is.

Saying they forgot about you seems very odd and implies to me at least that your BF has not effectively communicate your relationship to his family. How often does your BF interact with his family face to face? Do you and he attend holiday gatherings with his family as a couple? Do your kids attend with you as a family?

Of course, if your BF has effectively communicated your relationship, they could be choosing to ignore it. It could be a family that only acknowledges legally married partners, it could be the age difference, or it could be an alliance with his ex. 

Curious, what is your relationship like with his adult children?

RooRoo

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Re: How to respond?
« Reply #20 on: January 23, 2013, 02:39:34 PM »
I've had two thoughts that haven't already been covered by earlier posters.

It may be that you have been slighted on invitations because the hosts couldn't remember your name. I do that and it embarrasses me. If I didn't know you and your DP well, I might leave you off rather than say "and girlfriend" or (even worse, knowing that there is a rel@tionship) "and guest." (If I knew him well enough that he'd know about my stupid memory, I'd call him and ask.) But, if I remembered only your first name, that's what I'd use.

I'm not excusing myself. I'm just offering my own failure as an example of what might have been happening, and a possible reason to cut them some slack.

The other thought is a good bit uglier.  :'(  Could it be that the family, unreasonably, looks on you as the eeevil younger woman who broke up his marriage and/or is preventing it from being healed?

If that is the case, it is for your DP to deal with. Firmly.
"Someday we must write a book of Etiquette for sensible people," said Mrs. Morland, "though apart from a few rules it really boils down to an educated mind and a kind heart." ~ Angela Thirkell, Never Too Late

Roe

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Re: How to respond?
« Reply #21 on: January 23, 2013, 03:10:28 PM »
I didn't expect them to invite my kids to the wedding. I totally understand not inviting them to a formal event like that, they are not blood related and don't know the bride and groom. My issue with the wedding was that bf was invited but I was not and we are a couple who lives together. I was his date at his son's wedding a few months before so there was no question regarding how he view our relationship

The issue with my kids and the family gathering is different.  It's never been a by-invitation-only event and lots of non-family members have been in attendance over the years. Because written invites were never issued before, I never realized that my children would not be welcome. Also, the whole "we don't know your kids" doesn't really work because this is the type of event where you would include people you haven't met but would like to.  Not inviting them is more like "we don't care to meet your children because we consider you to be temporary", just like calling and getting addresses twice but not once asking bf what is shutterbug's last name.

As for bf, he calls my kids his bonus children.  :)

Just for the record, my kids are teenagers so there is no concern that I have let them run wild or be unsupervised.  They've only been to two family events, both involving bf's son's wedding.

They are definitely doing everything they can to make sure you and your children feel unwelcomed!  I do blame them for not inviting your children to their potluck.  This is probably why they sent out written invitations, to make it CLEAR that they were not invited.  And that's very rude!

I think you have your "reason" not to attend. I'd definitely stay home if I were you. 

They can mess with me but no one messes with my kids like that, esp when they are just being ugly and nasty about it. 

Shoo

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Re: How to respond?
« Reply #22 on: January 27, 2013, 11:17:52 AM »
I didn't expect them to invite my kids to the wedding. I totally understand not inviting them to a formal event like that, they are not blood related and don't know the bride and groom. My issue with the wedding was that bf was invited but I was not and we are a couple who lives together. I was his date at his son's wedding a few months before so there was no question regarding how he view our relationship

The issue with my kids and the family gathering is different.  It's never been a by-invitation-only event and lots of non-family members have been in attendance over the years. Because written invites were never issued before, I never realized that my children would not be welcome. Also, the whole "we don't know your kids" doesn't really work because this is the type of event where you would include people you haven't met but would like to.  Not inviting them is more like "we don't care to meet your children because we consider you to be temporary", just like calling and getting addresses twice but not once asking bf what is shutterbug's last name.

As for bf, he calls my kids his bonus children.  :)

Just for the record, my kids are teenagers so there is no concern that I have let them run wild or be unsupervised.  They've only been to two family events, both involving bf's son's wedding.

They are definitely doing everything they can to make sure you and your children feel unwelcomed!  I do blame them for not inviting your children to their potluck.  This is probably why they sent out written invitations, to make it CLEAR that they were not invited.  And that's very rude!

I think you have your "reason" not to attend. I'd definitely stay home if I were you. 

They can mess with me but no one messes with my kids like that, esp when they are just being ugly and nasty about it. 

Totally agree!

gramma dishes

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Re: How to respond?
« Reply #23 on: January 27, 2013, 12:46:08 PM »
I didn't expect them to invite my kids to the wedding. I totally understand not inviting them to a formal event like that, they are not blood related and don't know the bride and groom. My issue with the wedding was that bf was invited but I was not and we are a couple who lives together. I was his date at his son's wedding a few months before so there was no question regarding how he view our relationship

The issue with my kids and the family gathering is different.  It's never been a by-invitation-only event and lots of non-family members have been in attendance over the years. Because written invites were never issued before, I never realized that my children would not be welcome. Also, the whole "we don't know your kids" doesn't really work because this is the type of event where you would include people you haven't met but would like to.  Not inviting them is more like "we don't care to meet your children because we consider you to be temporary", just like calling and getting addresses twice but not once asking bf what is shutterbug's last name.

As for bf, he calls my kids his bonus children.  :)

Just for the record, my kids are teenagers so there is no concern that I have let them run wild or be unsupervised.  They've only been to two family events, both involving bf's son's wedding.

They are definitely doing everything they can to make sure you and your children feel unwelcomed!  I do blame them for not inviting your children to their potluck.  This is probably why they sent out written invitations, to make it CLEAR that they were not invited.  And that's very rude!

I think you have your "reason" not to attend. I'd definitely stay home if I were you. 

They can mess with me but no one messes with my kids like that, esp when they are just being ugly and nasty about it. 

Totally agree!

I also agree, and if I were your SO, I wouldn't want to attend any event that treated my chosen family like that either.  I'm pretty sure I would have an "If they aren't invited, then I'm not invited either.  It's either all of us or none of us" attitude.