The “Package-Deal” Relationship Pt.2: Embracing The Family
Ideally we all want to have a family that will be o.k. with the person that we chose to have as partner. But what if someone in our partner's family has a problem with us? Will you become stressed out, confused, or even annoyed by that person's behavior (for all you primetime comedy show fans...think of the T.V. sitcom "Everybody Loves Raymond"-and the way "Debra" is always treated by "Marie").
If you find yourself in a situation like that, then you may want to try...
- Talking to your partner. This is the first person that you should talk to about the situation. See if he/she could talk to that family member about the problem. Sometimes all they need is to hear their loved one say "I appreciate your concern, but I'm happy with the person that I'm with".
- Talking to the person in the family that's giving you problems. Express to that family member how you feel. Sometimes they may be mean or critical because they don't want to see the person that you're involved with get hurt emotionally. OR...it's just in their character. If that's the case then you can let them know how much you care for your partner and you want to have a loving and lasting relationship. You should also tell them that you want to be treated with the same amount of respect that you show to them.....and you really want to have a decent relationship with your partner's family.
Whatever you decide to do, make sure that you express how you feel as soon as the problems occur. A lack or delay of communication can cause unnecessary problems and extra stress that could be avoided.