Should You Break Up With Someone Because of Their Parents?

Breaking up with someone you still love is one of the most painful things to go through in life. Many have asked "Why would you break up with someone if you still love them?" I was one of them, when I was younger.

But since I have gotten older, and had enough relationship experience to make any girl go crazy, I have learned a few lessons. I know now that loving someone does not mean you are compatible. It may sound sad, but love is not the only thing needed to sustain a relationship. Sometimes issues get in the way such as trust issues, jobs, college, friends, and...family.

That may be no surprise to some, and a total shocker for others. But sometimes in a relationship, you find yourself thinking of ending things because of their family. In this situation, I found that there are some key questions to ask yourself.

Do Their Parents Like You?


Dealing With a Breakup.

Mostly, I thought this question only pertained to high schoolers because of the parents' ability to prevent you from dating certain people.  I feel I have been pretty lucky because my father never, ever told me who I could and could not date.  He has always been pleasant to anyone I dated, no matter how they looked or what he actually thought of them.  He has always let me make my own choices...and therefore my own mistakes. 

So when I began a relationship with a man whose mother refused to admit he was 22 and not 12, I was completely beside myself with confusion and frustration.  I know now that I was not the only to experience this.  It is actually quite common, especially when you date an only child.  I'm willing to bet that a large majority of those who will read this have experienced this, or are experiencing it now. 

When you have a parent or both that refuse to admit their son or daughter has grown up, it becomes about ten times more important that they like you than in normal dating circumstances.  Sure, at some point in any serious relationship, it becomes pretty important that their parents at least ACCEPT you, and life is much easier when they like you.  But when an overbearing parent doesn't like you, the relationship can be doomed.

More Importantly, Do you Like Their Parents?

Would you break up with someone because of their parents?

  • Yes ma'am!
  • No way!
See results without voting

It sounds very harsh to say that this is more important, but let's be brutally honest. How easy is a relationship when you can't stand each other's parents? It doesn't really matter what your reasons for hating them are. Any husband or wife that loathes their in-laws will tell you that holidays are miserable, your blood level spikes whenever they call, and you become a genuis at finding reasons NOT to visit them.

So if you know you can't stand them in the dating phase, why would you devote your life to that sort of stress and misery? The answer for many is love. You will do it because you are in love with your partner. You will take one for the team and become a martyr for that love. The problem is, how long do you think it will take before fights and resent ment arise because of your strained relationship with his or her parents? If they love their parents, they will begin to resent you for not feeling the same, or for trying to pull them apart. And you will begin to resent them because you will constantly find that you come second to their parents in any disagreement.

Think about things like this, and whether you'd rather end the relationship on good terms now.....or horrible ones in several years.

Is There Hope?

Tips for Meeting the Parents

Parents That Snoop

If you've made it this far, thank you. I'm aware that a lot of what is written here makes me seem like a jaded, bitter crone with no hope at all. But the truth is, some situations do have hope for improvement. But improvement requires a compromise on everyone's part. You, your significant other, and his parents need to be able to find middle ground for thins to get any better. The one thing you all have in common is: you love him/her. That is a place to start, but it is not the only needed agreement.

It is difficult to get everyone to come to agreeable terms when one or more parties refuses to see everyone's perspective. You need to understand that you are dating someone's baby, and they only want to protect their child from getting hurt, and to see them prosper. Their ways of showing that might be crazy, but the intent is a good one. They need to see that you love their child for who they are, and want to share in their joy and happiness while you are together. And your significant other needs to be able to see that they can not take sides in order to keep peace.

Consider for a moment that a situation like this is probably hardest on the one you're dating. They have two or three people they love, but no one can get along and they don't know whose side to choose.

Who Do You REALLY Have a Problem With?

I can tell you that the relationship with I spoke of ended. I finally decided I could not take a mother that actually gave her son money just so he would take her side of a disagreement.  Or that's what my reason was at the time, anyway.  But as time went on, I realized that what I actually couldn't handle was dating a man who could be so easily bribed and manipulated.  

Many times, you spend weeks, months, or even years raging about how much you can't stand a person's family, and never even realize that's not the whole truth.  Many times, your biggest problem is the behavior your significant other has that allows his or her family to continue acting that way. This is a very hard reality to face, but one that is all too often true.

In the end, the choice is yours. You need to decide what will make you happy and keep your sanity. 

Mother-in-law
Mother-in-law

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Comments 10 comments

me 6 years ago

thank you so much this helped so much my boyfriends parents are extremely crazy at this moment and we don't know what to do but we love each other and this tottaly helped me thank you.


Anonymous 6 years ago

It was a very good article.


Emily 6 years ago

What do you do if you happen to live with said infuriating in-laws? How much do I need to be tested to prove that I love my man?


ChrissyDean profile image

ChrissyDean 6 years ago Author

I don't believe you should have to be tested to prove you love your man to this extent. Imagine how much emotional and mental stress this adds to you, which is then transferred to your other half. It isn't a happy situation, and may end very badly if it goes to long. My suggestion is to try and find another place to go, if possible. I know it may not be..


kayla 5 years ago

i think this should help with my parents and his and all of us thank u for this article


Lindsay 3 years ago

I am going through this right now, accept that I am on the other side of the argument, I am the one with problematic parents. I' 20 and he was 22. We just ended a 6 year relationship because my parents still did not trust him to the full :S it's so hard... still have to tell my parents about it....


Eyda 22 months ago

What if i love my partner but my parent doesn't give a permision to see him meet him or dating?


mou 14 months ago

We are in a relation of 4yrs... just a week before he broke d relation because of his family...


Sam 10 months ago

This article was pretty helpful - it made me feel not so alone, at least. I've been dating my boyfriend for 4 years, and though we don't live near his family, I dread the holidays every year. His mom is fantastic, but almost everyone else just sucks; they're people with whom I would not normally associate. I find them uneducated and spoiled. My boyfriend thankfully acts most like his mom, so he's nice and easy-going. I know I have to go to these things because I love him and tolerating his family is part of that, but I wish he came from a better background.


AMom1 6 months ago

I know this is an old thread but for anyone maybe in the same boat- Sadly my 18 year old is going through this. He has dated this girl for over a year exclusively and they just adore each other. Reminds me of my spouse and I at that age. She is wonderful I admit. Everything about her is great. She is nice, Christian, does not smoke, drink or do drugs. She is respectful and watches out for my son. Almost as though I knew right off this was going to be my daughter in law someday. Sounds strange but she fit in that well with our family. BUT my son broke up with her because of her parents. She is 17. He asked their permission to continue to date her when he neared 18. Laws here says it is ok but he asked out of respect for them and her. The problem is they are crazy. They do drugs we discovered, they saddle my son with baby sitting their other 3 small children when ever he goes to visit they just leave no matter if the two kids already had plans. They even tried to talk my son into driving one of their toddlers around in his car with no seat belt then when he protested for safety concerns the parents just said well we will pay the ticket. WTH??? I finally approached him do to safety concerns as I suspected the parents were the cause of his growing anxiety. He soon after broke up with the girl in a respectful way (not telling her of course it was her parents really, he just said with college getting his bachelors and working that 12-15 hours a day and weekends it is to hard to see her and it is not fair to her to just stay waiting around for him) but he never really wanted to break it off nor did she. It is so sad and I have cried a lot because it seems this girls psychologically abusive family has made it to where this poor girl is a shut in, home schooled and they push everyone away. She pays for it. Literally she has no friends do to them. My son and her met at a Christian camp and have on their own continued with church, volunteering etc. until the break up. What is a person to do in this situation??? We all adore her but to think of that other family as possibly grandparents one day scares us all to death. Good grief it is so disheartening to leave this girl behind with her family on a one way ticket to destruction because she is not like that at all and wants to be different. Wants a different life style and wishes so badly her Mom was like me.

Any suggestions welcomed.

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