If GLaDOS is Your Mother-In-Law, Maybe You Should Rethink the Wedding

Lara Crigger:
Love FAQ: If GLaDOS is Your Mother-In-Law, Maybe You Should Rethink the Wedding

The green eyed monster claims another victim.

Read Full Article

Save File:

(Lara, I don't think that he's saying he has any right to be upset about what she did while they were apart, or that he wants to bring it up. He seems pretty on-the-ball about the fact that, while of course it's not a happy thought, he's got no ground to stand on. The issue seems to be that she wants to use it against him by reminding him that this happened (and could happen again).)

She's definitely still holding onto this, and she wants to make sure you feel hurt by it. Sometimes this is a big issue in relationships--someone has (and wants to keep) leverage. The person with the "moral high ground" gets to decide... well... everything. This is not a healthy state for a relationship, because it forestalls any real communication. Feelings block thought.

The only way to remove the feelings causing this are to let them die down. Sorry to be "that guy," but that'll mean calling things off for now. If you were further along in your relationship--and I'm not talking time here--before this happened, it would mean backtracking a bit. In your case, it means a hard reset.

Do so without accusations. Let her know you're still sorry, and you know she's still hurt by it. The two of you need time to yourselves to sort your feelings out. She needs to work out the hurt and mistrust by letting the initial "sting" wear off so she can deal with it on an intellectual level. You need to let your guilt and regret wear off so you can tell whether you're pursuing this out of love... or habit.

It's the best move in this case.

Cube:

Don't do it.

There are some benefits to long-distance relationships, but there are also some major drawbacks. Time is both. One of the benefits is that the distance forces us to slow down, because we physically can't rush... but one of the drawbacks is we have all that time and space to create an idealized picture of the other person and our future with them, since there's nothing around to prove otherwise.

Your boyfriend lacks confidence and a sense of self. Not uncommon. Being 22 doesn't mean being an adult. That comes with experience, not age. He needs to live on his own, likely endure a noisy conflict with his family, and find his footing before he can be anybody's husband. And you may yet have some growing to do. You may find that you've grown in the same direction, or that you've gone completely different ways. Better to find out before the vows.

If the two of you don't get your individual stuff straight, you'll be a couple of one-legged people propping each other up. Yeah, it may seem like it's working, but it's nowhere near what it could be if you were each able to stand on your own.

Depending on the insult, a woman might gain brownie points with me for insulting my mother.

^ Your mother was a hamster and your father smells of elderberries!

I love these articles. Well done, Lara.

Dastardly:

Lara Crigger:
Love FAQ: If GLaDOS is Your Mother-In-Law, Maybe You Should Rethink the Wedding

The green eyed monster claims another victim.

Read Full Article

Save File:

(Lara, I don't think that he's saying he has any right to be upset about what she did while they were apart, or that he wants to bring it up. He seems pretty on-the-ball about the fact that, while of course it's not a happy thought, he's got no ground to stand on. The issue seems to be that she wants to use it against him by reminding him that this happened (and could happen again).)

She's definitely still holding onto this, and she wants to make sure you feel hurt by it. Sometimes this is a big issue in relationships--someone has (and wants to keep) leverage. The person with the "moral high ground" gets to decide... well... everything. This is not a healthy state for a relationship, because it forestalls any real communication. Feelings block thought.

The only way to remove the feelings causing this are to let them die down. Sorry to be "that guy," but that'll mean calling things off for now. If you were further along in your relationship--and I'm not talking time here--before this happened, it would mean backtracking a bit. In your case, it means a hard reset.

Do so without accusations. Let her know you're still sorry, and you know she's still hurt by it. The two of you need time to yourselves to sort your feelings out. She needs to work out the hurt and mistrust by letting the initial "sting" wear off so she can deal with it on an intellectual level. You need to let your guilt and regret wear off so you can tell whether you're pursuing this out of love... or habit.

It's the best move in this case.

I don't know that time apart will really help anything though. It would seem likely to me that their feelings on this issue aren't going to change on their own. Their feelings seem pretty sorted out to me. She's not going to just get over being angry and he's not just going to stop feeling guilty until they both get some closure about the problem, whatever that entails. He'll probably just sit there and fester, holding onto the hope that they can reconcile. And she may use it as an opportunity to see another guy again, and if she's angry enough, hold that over his head as she did the first time. Neither one is healthy. They need closure.

As you said, I don't think he thinks he has a right to be upset about what she did during the breakup, but for her to knowingly use that to pick at him is unhealthy for them both. They need to, in my opinion, sit down and discuss the problem, several times if necessary. She needs to decide whether there's anything he can do to forgive him. If so, then he needs to work night and day to earn that trust and respect back. If not, then they need to end it immediately.

Dastardly:

Funny. The advice you just gave makes more sense than what the article writer put out, as it doesn't feel as one-sided and all over the place.

Okay, there is one crucial thing missing from the advice for Save File guy. And that is that his once again girlfriend has no right to be treating him like shit and threatening him with infidelity, even if she is hurt. Having been hurt is not a free "being an asshole" card, nor is it an excuse to behave like a spiteful child. These threats of infidelity are a disgusting, cruel thing to do and turn a relationship toxic, ruining any chance of it ever getting better. He needs to seriously sit her down and ask her if her only goal from taking him back was to make him suffer. Because it just sounds like she wants keep rubbing his mistake in his face.

I recommend just finding yourself a new girlfriend. You don't want a partner who is actively making you feel miserable instead of being proactive and working with you to sort out the trust issues. I find the advice given seriously biased towards the emotionally abusive girlfriend, not taking into account what the guy must be feeling as a result of her behaviour. And I say this as a woman. I mean, the guy might have cheated, but come on. That does not call for what she is now doing to him. Especially after taking him back.

It's probably not a good thing that I look at these articles every week and think "why bother?" It's way easier to just sit at home and get drunk while hating everyone and everything. Ahh...sweet, precious misanthropy and alcohol.

Satosuke:
It's probably not a good thing that I look at these articles every week and think "why bother?" It's way easier to just sit at home and get drunk while hating everyone and everything. Ahh...sweet, precious misanthropy and alcohol.

I got a game for you then, the whole premise is to fuck up everyone elses day using a giant rock and destroying everything they hold dear for money and profit.
Heres the steam link for you:
http://store.steampowered.com/app/22230/
Alright, continue resenting...
You beautiful soul..

I only read one letter per week, and this time it was save.

Save, shes just trying to make you know that it can happen again. Best thing would to be discuss it, apologize, do the whole "BOTTOM OF YOUR HEART" thing about how much you love her and all that. Then, at the end, simply say that you will never do it again, and ask if she is the same about it.

Aprilgold:

Satosuke:
It's probably not a good thing that I look at these articles every week and think "why bother?" It's way easier to just sit at home and get drunk while hating everyone and everything. Ahh...sweet, precious misanthropy and alcohol.

I got a game for you then, the whole premise is to fuck up everyone elses day using a giant rock and destroying everything they hold dear for money and profit.
Heres the steam link for you:
http://store.steampowered.com/app/22230/
Alright, continue resenting...
You beautiful soul..

Meh, that game looks like a 3D Angry Birds. No thanks.

Satosuke:

Meh, that game looks like a 3D Angry Birds. No thanks.

Yes, but in this your ruining the lives of little Monty Python characters. Gameplay footage is almost everywhere, its like bowling and towerdefense mixed into one, its by the guys that made Zeno Clash.

Other then that.
image

To quote from the response to letter number 2 "As the mother of your future husband, she deserves your respect."
Sorry but I call bullshit here, no-one "deserves" respect, respect is earned. Just as she has to earn her mother-in-law's respect so too must the mother-in-law earn her respect, it works both ways.
No-one has an automatic right to respect from anyone, I can't be alone in this line of thinking surely?

A couple can't be truly happy without the blessing of their parents, unless they completely cut their parents off of their lives. You know the old saying: love me love my dog, if you can't love his/her parents, don't commit.

In addition, how you treat your parents is how you will probably treat your significant other, unless you consciously forced yourself to do otherwise.

Long distance relationship don't work! it's painful, weird and lacking. I used to had a friend who had a long distance relationship with his gf, every time he sleeps he would aim his webcam on his bed so she can see him sleep. It was weird and in the end they still broke up.

A bird in had is worth two in a bush -english proverb.

Distant water cannot put out close flames -chinese proverb.

Learn from our ancestral wisdom.

My philosophy on annoying family members (and I even use this with my own family because they don't get a free ride just because we share genes) is that you don't have to respect them, but you do have to tolerate them, and at least be civil with them. That's really all it takes to get by. And if you can start by just being civil and courteous, you can eventually find yourself even enjoying their company. If not, just continue to be civil and courteous.

But no one deserves respect. Not a mother-in-law, not a parent, not someone who just happens to have been alive longer than you. Respect is earned. If they don't earn it, then don't give it.

But I do agree that the future husband might be more like his family than the LW thinks. Those are the kinds of things that come to light after you start living together.

ExtraDebit:

A bird in had is worth two in a bush -english proverb.

While I agree with the rest of your statements this proverb means that what you have is better then what you might be able to get, as in don't give up what you have because you think you can get something better

wadark:
I don't know that time apart will really help anything though. It would seem likely to me that their feelings on this issue aren't going to change on their own. Their feelings seem pretty sorted out to me. She's not going to just get over being angry and he's not just going to stop feeling guilty until they both get some closure about the problem, whatever that entails. He'll probably just sit there and fester, holding onto the hope that they can reconcile. And she may use it as an opportunity to see another guy again, and if she's angry enough, hold that over his head as she did the first time. Neither one is healthy. They need closure.

Really, I think we're sort of in agreement here.

I don't think that time apart will help the relationship. I think it will help themselves, though. They're not going to get over the issue just by waiting--I've got no argument with you there--but they won't even be able to discuss that issue until the emotional frenzy has died down.

And emotions like that are like a bruise--it'll go away, but only if you quit poking at it. It needs time away... and that means away. You're right that, at first, he'll be "festering." When you're apart from someone, you miss them (whether they're good for you or not). It's similar to withdrawal, and it's powerful. But it is also an emotion, and that means you can wait it out.

Once he's away long enough, he'll begin to move on. That's when the "time away" really starts. I suspect, somewhere in there, he'll suddenly come to a realization that this is surely not the best he can expect out of a relationship. But if not, they'll at least both be able to come back to it with a clean emotional slate. That means a lot less "background noise" when they try to talk through the trust and communication issues.

Letter one:

I ain't touchin' that one.... Mine field. Bloody awful for both parties involved by the sound of it.
I hope they can either move on or learn to trust again, or move on somehow.

Letter Two:
Sweet Jesus, that's wonderful sounding.

It always amazes me how early Americans tend to get married. Also long distance (been there, done that, got the scars to show for it).... and talking about marriage...
Huh, whaddya know, the cart's in front of the horse!!

The insanely early marriage trend is a cultural trend thing, I know. It's just also a fairly obvious factor for high divorce rates. Which in itself, is not a bad thing- nobody should be trapped in an unworkable or loveless or abusive marriage. I'm not hugely keen on divorce, but if it's not working, it's not working.

Speaking from personal experience, long distance is a complete and utter deception.
I think it's possible only for very specific, limited amounts of time. I'm not saying they're all doomed, but I thought mine was going to work as well.
That's not to say you shouldn't try. Just don't be stupid like I was, and go into it with your eyes open.

The person you marry should be someone you love, yes, but it should also be someone you know the faults of. Warts and all, as they say.

That said, I'd drive my prospective missus to a dermatology clinic if she had warts for real...
Yeesh! I would expect no less if the roles were reversed!

Dastardly:

wadark:
I don't know that time apart will really help anything though. It would seem likely to me that their feelings on this issue aren't going to change on their own. Their feelings seem pretty sorted out to me. She's not going to just get over being angry and he's not just going to stop feeling guilty until they both get some closure about the problem, whatever that entails. He'll probably just sit there and fester, holding onto the hope that they can reconcile. And she may use it as an opportunity to see another guy again, and if she's angry enough, hold that over his head as she did the first time. Neither one is healthy. They need closure.

Really, I think we're sort of in agreement here.

I don't think that time apart will help the relationship. I think it will help themselves, though. They're not going to get over the issue just by waiting--I've got no argument with you there--but they won't even be able to discuss that issue until the emotional frenzy has died down.

And emotions like that are like a bruise--it'll go away, but only if you quit poking at it. It needs time away... and that means away. You're right that, at first, he'll be "festering." When you're apart from someone, you miss them (whether they're good for you or not). It's similar to withdrawal, and it's powerful. But it is also an emotion, and that means you can wait it out.

Once he's away long enough, he'll begin to move on. That's when the "time away" really starts. I suspect, somewhere in there, he'll suddenly come to a realization that this is surely not the best he can expect out of a relationship. But if not, they'll at least both be able to come back to it with a clean emotional slate. That means a lot less "background noise" when they try to talk through the trust and communication issues.

I'll do something unprecedented on the internet here and say...

Well said. I hadn't thought of it in that way (And no sarcasm at all, seriously). I suppose there is a good thing to be said for helping yourself before you help the relationship that's already troubled.

While I have zero tolerance or sympathy for guys who cheat on women (seriously... self restraint. Learn some), the girlfriend holding it over his head is downright spiteful. Maybe it's just me, but accepting an apology and taking someone back should imply that you forgive them. Completely.

But by being spiteful and pulling the "well I might be cheating on you too!" card, she's not only inflicting the same pain that he inflicted on her (along with the guilt he already had from his own mistake), she's shown that she's not ready to get over it. Thus, she's only wasting his time and her own. The relationship is on a road to nowhere.

So like Lara said, talk it out and get everything out in the open. If the damage cannot be undone, time to move on. Start over with a new woman, and keep it in your pants this time.

wadark:

As you said, I don't think he thinks he has a right to be upset about what she did during the breakup, but for her to knowingly use that to pick at him is unhealthy for them both. They need to, in my opinion, sit down and discuss the problem, several times if necessary. She needs to decide whether there's anything he can do to forgive him. If so, then he needs to work night and day to earn that trust and respect back. If not, then they need to end it immediately.

Well said.

A couple can get past infidelity, but only if both sides are willing to let it go. If she's going to keep bringing it up and using it against him, the wound will never heal with her jabbing at it.

Yes, he has work to do to make it up to her, but it's not a game of vengeance. And if she can't put aside some desire to make him suffer then it's futile. If she can't take a leap of faith to trust him again after that breach, then what can he hope to do? Spend the next twenty years being faithful while she makes him feel like crap? It's not very realistic.

Here is the solution to both problems:

Break up.

Seriously - just do it. You can send me a card later when you both find someone better.

If you are at the point that you believe your girlfriend is possibly cheating on you and you haven't brought it up yet you need to be out of that relationship, whether she is actually cheating or not. It took me a while to realize this but once trust is broken in a relationship that relationship is as good as over. How can you be emotionally intimate with someone you don't trust?
Cut your losses. Next time don't cheat.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Registered for a free account here