Husbands & Wives

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By Rebecca Teti

Thursday: Marriage

(Join each day’s Coffee Talk discussion: Mon: Parenting; Tues: Open Forum; Wed: NFP; Thu: Marriage; Fri: Education; Sat/Sun: Changing Roles)

Struggling in your marriage? Have some relationship advice to share? Have a marriage success story to share? Have a man/woman question? This weekly thread is the place to do it.

Come on in and join the conversation!

Rebecca Teti


  • So I am feeling a bit brokenhearted and am looking for a reality check/ words of wisdom. My husband and I have been married for 9 years, all of which have been spent in his hometown (2500 miles away from where I grew up). We see my parents 2-3 times per year, which is hard, but we stay connected through phone calls and Skype. The issue is that during my parents' last visit, they looked at some properties in our area with the idea that, if they had a home here, they might come for more visits or stay for longer periods of time. I am thrilled by this - for myself and for our children - but my husband is very upset. He has told me several times that it would be "extremely hard" for him if they were to have a home here and that it will upset him greatly if they make a purchase. They are my parents, so I am biased, but they really are easy to get along with - quiet, unassuming, and definitely not intrusive or needy. If they knew of his feelings, they would never look at another house, I am sure. They are in their mid-70's and both have health problems that are likely to become disabling in the future. So I am quite anxious to get good quality time in with them, particularly with their grandchildren, to whom they are quite devoted. I know relationships with in-laws can be hard, but I really am having trouble seeing things from my husband's perspective. I feel caught in the middle...

    Posted on Apr 25th, 2013 at 12:33 PM by Sad Wife

  • Sad Wife, based on the details that you have provided, it certainly sounds like your husband is being unfair. What exactly is his objection to them owning a home locally? Does he find them annoying? What exactly is he worried about? Unless he can give you a good reason, I really think he's being unreasonable. It can only benefit your children to have more time with their grandparents, and you as well. I would hope he would have some empathy for the fact that your contact with them has been somewhat limited since marrying him and moving near his family.

    Posted on Apr 25th, 2013 at 2:37 PM by Claire S

  • Hello Sad wife, I am sorry for your situation. I will pray for you. What is the cause for your husband's dislike of your parents? Maybe with this information you can try to assure your husband that you will work on making that better. I live closer to my in-laws than my parents but my husband has said that he would be more than willing to have them come up and live around us, even on the same property. They have different political views, but he knows thatthey are family and that they are important to me and to my children. He inds ways to truly enjoy their company. I get along well with his family. It seems to me that there has to be a cause or maybe he is just being selfish and thinks that maybe if they move closer you might not be as focused on him as you are now? Prayers for you!

    Posted on Apr 25th, 2013 at 2:39 PM by nadine

  • If your husband has a contentious relationship with your parents, where he feels like they are very critical of him, then I can see why it might be "extremely hard" for him to have them "nearby". If he is complaining that your helping to care take of them will take attention away from him, then he is being just plain selfish. I'm sorry. I come from a culture where we honor and care for our elders and, in some cases, bring them in to live with us--especially as they grow older and increasingly frail. You say your parents are in their 70's and have health problems. They Will Need You. He needs to understand that. From what I read, your parents are not asking to live in your house. They just want to be close. If he doesn't want to be around when they visit, he can go elsewhere. But it's not fair of him to have a tantrum because you want to have your parents close and be there for them.

    Posted on Apr 25th, 2013 at 2:44 PM by Montira

  • I agree with a couple of posters above, Sad wife--especially Montira. I think some people are not very mature, yet, and simply think of themselves instead of families and what may be best for ALL. I think your parents have every right to move closer, if they wish to spend more time with you and your kids. My husband and my Mum have a very tenuous relationship, at best, but he would never say anything against having her move across the state to be closer. He knows that she loves me and our children, and it would be wonderful if she were closer--she is also in her 70's. I don't know the whole story, but I think he is acting rather childish and selfish. Perhaps he doesn't need to know everything your parents are deciding about their life and whether they want to move closer---and you do NOT need to share his mean-spirited comments with your parents. I will pray for peace for you, good luck.

    Posted on Apr 25th, 2013 at 6:46 PM by Donna L.

  • No counselor required in the PA diocese where we married in 1997. Either Engaged Encounter weekend or pre-Cana and FOCUS test reviewed with our priest.

    Posted on Apr 25th, 2013 at 7:28 PM by Carolyn A

  • I live in Texas. We took a FOCUS test and then met with the parish deacon to review the results. We had a 6-8 week marriage course, meeting with the parish priest, NFP classes, but never had to see a licensed counselor.

    Posted on Apr 25th, 2013 at 10:31 PM by JM

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