Inlaws hate me, husband allows it

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    Hi, this is a really long story but will try to shorten it.
    When we married his family made it clear they didn’t like me, none of them came to our engagement party, I’m talking sisters, brothers and mum. Looking back this should have been a bit red flag to not marry him.
    Over the years I have always felt left out and talked about. They look down on me and criticise everything I do, the way I bring up my children is not good enough, where I holiday is not good enough, they want to run my life. They also make no effort with any of my family, it’s like they just tolerate us.
    I have bent over backwards to please them, naming my children his family’s choice names, doing everything they’ve expected from me for over 30 years… all the time knowing that they don’t like me and only want to control me and my husband and our lives.
    When my father died, I had no sympathy, his Mum didn’t even send condolences or acknowledge the fact that my Father had passed away, that was bad enough but my husband was taken seriously ill at the same time, he had major emergency heart surgery and guess what?? Yep, it was all my fault !! Well I reacted when I heard they’d said this and fell out with his brother who had said it. I told him I want nothing else to do with him. Next thing I know, the Mum, sisters & husbands, brother & wife, nieces and nephews and other cousins from husbands side.. all of them, not talking to me. Completely cut me and my children off. My husband does absolutely nothing about this and carries on with them as if they’ve done nothing. he has never backed me up and puts them before me every time. I believe his part in this has allowed them to treat me this way, not once has he ever dared confront them about anything. I don’t want him to fall out with them, just to speak to them nicely and let them know that this is unacceptable and unfair. When he’s invited to family events he happily goes without us which just kills me inside.

    I’m left feeling I have no backup from husband, disrespected, betrayed. It gets to the point where I just want to divorce him over this as it’s clear that he puts his blood family before his wife and children. It’s so painful to realise this. They have won, they have destroyed me, I cry daily, I feel rejected, not good enough and unloved. I know this probably can never be resolved, I just want to find peace without destroying my marriage. Thanks for reading


    There was recently a post on one of my favourite advice blogs Captain Awkward titled thusly: “stop auditioning for the approval of people who do not like you”. It must be so incredibly draining and emotionally devastating to deal with, take the fact that they are cutting you out as a blessing in disguise.

    That being said, it definitely says a lot that your husband has not spoken to his family regarding their grossly unfair behaviour. Part of being married/in a partnership is having each other’s back, being a team. It’s okay to love your family, but loving them at the expense of your significant other’s mental and emotional health is disrespectful and cowardly.

    Petra, whatever you decide to do, I hope it brings you peace! You do not deserve to be treated like this!


    Thank you Jade, I really don’t deserve to be treated like this, no one does, you’re right. Thank you for your kind words and thoughts on this. Funny how someone being kind can make one cry !!


    Hi Petra,
    I am so sorry to hear of your situation. It must be terrible to feel so rejected by the rest of your husband’s family. You do not deserve to be treated in this way but unfortunately you are.

    I’m sure that it doesn’t feel like it but the reaction of his wider family says nothing about you and everything about them and their own thoughts, feelings and behaviours. In the same way the way that your husband and that you choose to react to the situation is entirely in your powers. Can you continue in a marriage with this level of conflict, how can you create a better environment without giving up your power by pleasing others when it goes against your own values?

    Perhaps your husband feels out of control of the situation, he loves all of his family and does not want to choose between you or act and be responsible for creating further hurt. So he does nothing. I can think of 3 possible choices, you may be able to think of more; you continue with the current situation and understand that his wider family do not have enough love for you, you go your own way with the consequences that creates, or you find a way that you and your husband can communicate your wishes in a loving way and be prepared that his family may or may not reciprocate. One thing you cannot continue to do for your own health is to continue to please and give up your own power. I sincerely wish you well and that you find a way through where you, your husband, your children and your wider families can find peace.



    *hugs* to you Petra!! This is a terrible situation to be in and must be incredibly painful for you – *massive hugs*. It is heart-wrenching to deal with this level of rejection and pain; seemingly for no reason. You do not deserve this treatment; and it’s really heartbreaking when your husband is not on your side!! He is probably struggling with his own shame and a need to be accepted and loved by his family; this can be incredibly hard, and often we are rendered little kids in front of our families, so desperate for their love and approval that we find it hard to act with adult assertion.

    You cannot stop these people from hurting you – it is painful and it is a sad reality. But you can be happy and be free from most of your suffering about the situation, if you are willing to do some simple exercises :).

    I really agree with the wise responses from Simon and Jade here :). People are incredibly self-involved unfortunately, which makes them often too blind to consider someone with out all of their projections. While it is painful, I do agree that you ‘hustling’ for your worth from them, and love and acceptance. From people that just seem ‘bad’ who have hurt you, rejected you and treated you unfairly – rationally even if they did offer friendship – would you WANT them as friends, aside to ease the suffering you feel? Do they deserve your friendship? The fact that they are taking out whatever their ‘issues’ are which do not make an ounce of sense, on your CHILDREN? Do your children deserve their treatment? And that they cut you out for asserting yourself against that crazy, horrible comment the brother made – that is abusive behavior.

    I think, as hard as it is, try not to get angry because you are dealing with abusive people – which means that their actions have no reflection on you. They use their abuse tactics to try and control and make people fall in line – your husband and you but they surely do that with all people, because it is their way of relating and feeling in control. You don’t deserve that crap in your life and I think it’s a blessing that these people have cut you out. It means you can focus your energy on people that do deserve to be there and who deserve to be in your children’s lives.

    But rather than walking around with all your pain, and suffering from anger, and hate – while understandable – it is just unnecessary suffering. I really advise you to practice loving kindness meditation 🙂 – it will really, really ease all the pain you are feeling and help you love yourself and feel more peaceful and at ease; then these people’s actions won’t matter so much ^_^. As has been mentioned about auditioning for people’s approval who don’t like you by Jade, sadly you do this because you find it hard to approve of yourself! If you did find it easy, then you would not be driven to gain approval from these people and feel bad about yourself because you couldn’t. Loving kindness meditation has really, really helped me to love and accept myself; when we have own our source of love which we gain from meditation; it’s *amazing* – you feel so much love for yourself – it really is a beautiful feeling :). Love is not control and it is not abuse. Which is what these people are intricately connected with. So as a I say, you cannot change how they feel; but you can change the effect it has on you <3. I really hope that you try the meditation out ^-^! Even just everyday for a week. I also suggest, but I know this will be very painful to maybe consider, that you maybe send some loving kindness their way; because if you suffer from (though righteous) painful anger, resentment or criticalness, it will only deeply add to your suffering – and I do not want that for you.

    If you are happy, do you desire to hurt others? No. These people must be deeply miserable that they feel compelled to make you and many others (I am certain) suffer because of their pain. It makes me feel there is a very painful legacy within that family; which also makes me feel some compassion for your husband; clearly he is not like them, but suffers greatly from their treatment. Havig issues with my own in-laws (well kind of, we aren’t married yet!) my longterm boyfriend, I know deeply struggles with desiring their love and acceptance, and finds it very, very hard that their is a rift between my self and his mum. I’m not saying that doesn’t mean that he should not be there for you and stand up for you (though it may seem very fruitless) but I know my boyfriend, personally, finds this a very very hard and painful situation. I find with us, at least, that open, non-angry, deep conversation on how we both really feel really helps us with love and understanding.

    Please let me know how it goes :).

    • This reply was modified 9 years ago by Kirsten.

    Thank you Simon and Kirsten. My husband and I would be completely happily married if it wasn’t for his family. They are the only thing we have ever argued about. Deep down I don’t want to divorce and I definitely DON’T want to give things another go with his family. 30 years is long enough to try and be what they want. I do feel free’er knowing I no longer have to be what they want me to be, no more thinking before I speak, what i wear, what i do, where I go…. I can be myself. I still feel rejected and not good enough and that’s what I need to overcome. One thing that gives me pleasure is knowing how much they all dislike and b***h about each other, I suppose I am really lucky to be out of it, when it was “OK” it was fake anyway so what’s the point?

    I am very interested in meditation, lately I have been doing some relaxation breathing exercises.
    Do you have any details of guided meditations I could try? I am excited about doing this, I’m sure it will help.

    Kirsten and Simon I am so grateful you took time to send such lovely and helpful replies. Thank you so much.


    People remember not what you say, but how you make them feel. As long as you have treated people with respect & kindness, that’s all that matters.


    I am the husband who had a similar situation to yours. I didn’t see the hurt my family was causing my wife. Long story short, I had to choose, wife and my children or people who never accepted my wife. I chose my wife and the family I built with her. It’s been over a year with no contact with my family and it is better that way. It was difficult at the time but it was the best move for my immediate family. I didn’t realize that I didn’t have her back and I was very conflicted about losing my family but if they could not accept my wife and respect her then they were out of my life. If he won’t do it then the stress will never end and you will pay the price by yourself.


    Hi Petra, personally i think: this has nothing to do with you or your kids, how can his family love him but dislike/hate/ignore HIS beautiful wife and HIS OWN precious kids, thats not even real love in my oppinion.

    My conclusion is: people that ‘hate’ somebody else, dont love themselves, they are not happy with themselves/their lives so they go out projecting there unhappy feelings on other beings so that THEY dont have to confront themselves with the painfull/ugly/insecure feelings they have inside themselves..

    If you RLY love yourself you couldnt hate anything, cause you know.. youlb happy, enyoing & loving & sharing life!

    This is what i have learned in my 27 years.. Nowadays i dont take it personal when anybody is treating me hars/rude/unlovable etc. it comes from the inside of them and has nothing to do with me.

    Does this make sense? (english isnt my 1st-lanuage).

    I wish you a lot of luck and love from the Netherlands!


    Hate To say This , But Your Husband is a loser And a jerk . Aint I allow noone other than me to hurt or to say things like that to my girlfriend or my friends .
    See The problem Is His Family Is Downright greedy . The same blood must atleast partially flow through him . FUNNY THING , THE ONLY WAY YOUR HUBBY ‘S PARENTS WILL TOLERATE YOU FOR SOMETIME IS IF YOU WIN THE LOTTERY OR SOMETHING .

    My Advice is live somewhere else away from his family . I Am sure Your hubby will comply . And You dont need Them . Cause they wont even Take care of Your Children when they need help while your own parents and relatives will be the only ones who help .

    Life is short . Stay away from Garbage .


    You are all so lovely for taking the time to reply. Your comments and views on this have really built me up. Nothing has changed but I’m handling it much better. Your comments keep me strong and God bless you all, you have helped me a lot just with your kind words xxxx


    I am going through the same and I have realized that God will allow people to come into our lives to see who they really are and ways to make us stronger. I am at a place where I am about to become very wealthy and this gives me heads up to just know that I have the upper hand in making decision to either support him or allow him to allow his family to treat me like this and I say that it is his loss not mines!!
    Nothing from nothing leads to nothing!! Don’t be bitter but be happy because the bible says!!God strength is made perfect in our weakness!! Yes they may see you as weak but remember God gets stronger and if you are a child of God he will yake care of them all trust me!! Just Hold tight and see the salvation of the lord!!
    I say do Nothing!! Yeap that’s right Do Nothing!! Take your hands off the situation and watch how God will work!! Sooner of later they will all feel it including your husband and that part they must deal with!! When people set out to hurt, God will not tolerate that because you are his child!! That’s why the bible says a man is suppose to leave his family and cling to his wife and my husband along with yours have not mastered that that!! So that means your husband has broken one of Gods commandments!! The bible says men should love their wives as they love themselves which means your husband does not love himself to allow others to treat you in disrespect so when they disrespect you then they disrespect him and the fool does not even know it!!
    The bible also says people should love their neighbors ) which is you)!! So they are wrong and will feel the wrath of God which is three times worse!! The bible also says as a man thinkth in his heart so is he!! So their actions are justified because in his heart that’s how he feels you should be treated!! My friends ask me what am I going to do, not being invited to events or when I do go his ex wife is there in which they fly in from Florida to belittle me!! But I choose to not go to any events any longer because I ask myself (Why would I want to be around Devils)? They are dangerous and evil and because I shine with the light of God going would only make me a target for hurt because of that one simple reason! Why put yourself or your children in the hands of devils? If you invite them into your home or you step into their environment then you deserve what you get!! Stay away!! Stay away!! You will never see devils fighting themselves only outsiders!! Because they don’t understand your heart!! you are different!!! Please do nothing and watch the salvation of the lord!! Divorce is the easy way out and what fun would you get not to watch and see what God can do!! Now seeing that is so much better!!
    God is the miracle worker and the healer!! Just remain silent and be silent with your husband say nothing and pray pray pray, because you matter!! If you didn’t trust me you would not be Alive!! So you do have purpose!! Do your hair nails pamper yourself and make God your life not this man and family the truth is, you have made them your God worshiping them! And that’s wrong of you!!
    Trust me they are not important!!! Ask God for forgiveness in worshiping these people and make them miss you!!! Not the other way around!!! Trust me if you need to email me please do!! shrcumm@yahoo.com (Love you!! & Hugs from Sharon)


    I feel like I am reading my story. My story is very long. I am in a situation that sometimes I think my husband loves me, but then when his family are doing and saying evil things about me, he not only doesn’t fight for me, he blames me most of the time for their actions. Not only that they talk bad behind my back, they bring in his other kid’s mother in the issue and fill her head up try to convince her that I take all of my husband’s money and cause him not to take care of his other kids, and they know that his ex-wife hates me and they now befriend her stirring evil.
    His sister a couple of days ago had the nerve to text me some horrible things, even name my two young babies that I have with my husband as part of her hatred…she said thing like his other kids came first, you make him abandon them to only take care of yours.
    I can’t get over how people can be so mean and evil. I chose to not respond and ignored her text. I showed my husband her text, he did nothing not even to say I am sorry Rose that you are going through this.
    Every single member of his family hates me…I mean, not one person with the decency and the heart to say, enough is enough, this lady does not deserve this.
    My story is that I brought my husband and two children in the US from another country. I have the house, the good paying job. He was not doing anything back in his home country. When he came here, he did not work for 4 months, I took care of him, send money to his kids’ mom and got the kids to come to this country with my money. When his kids came, made sure they had their own room, took care of their medical needs etc.
    Now he is working, he makes one third of what I make, his family blames me that I take all of his money, meanwhile we have 2 babies together with day care, diapers. He keeps his money separate and gives me $125/week for day care for the babies, he pays water bill, car insurance for both our cars, and cable/phone–all less than $500 month.
    After all of my efforts and the opportunities that I provided to him and his children, not one of his family member can find it in their heart to acknowledge one good deed about me.
    How do I stay in this marriage? I’ll tell you I am afraid for my life, I feel like they are evil, dangerous, they might do evil things to me and my children, especially after the text that his sister sent me…
    I keep saying to myself if this is even worth fighting and staying. This is so unhealthy–why should I stay with my husband?
    Please help with thoughts…would you stay and how can you stay and feel safe and happy?
    Thank you for taking the time to read and comment.

    Jo Lynn Tan

    Hi Petra,

    Whatever it may be, I hope you will find peace in this situation. Sometimes it feels horrible if the one you care deeply about does not have your back when you need him to. Think about what is most important to you? What values matter to you? Respect? Your life principles? Your love and marriage? Whichever that is, at what cost will it take for you to have them? Give yourself some time to think about what is important to you and what can you do. Whatever you choose, you deserve it.
    Good luck.


    hello – I’m looking for advise, words of comfort, or wisdom. Anything to help me feel better. I am so very distraught. I don’t know what to do.
    I’ve been married to my husband for 11 years. He has 3 adult daughters that I have done so much for and never get a thank you. In fact they thank their father for things I have done and he never corrects them and tells them It was me. He happily takes the credit. We have been raising 2 of his grandchildren for over 7 years now because their mother spends more time in jail and was abusive to the oldest. All 3 of his daughters are nice to my face but backstabbing witches. When they visit they literally hang on my husband like Hugh Hefner and his playboy bunnies. It embarrassing. My husband admits his children are mean and disrespectful towards me but he refuses to say anything to them. He sits by and, in my opinion, gives them his blessing to do and say what they want no matter how nasty by not saying a word and stand up for me. I feel he is Silently giving his approval to them to treat me anyway they want. I have asked, begged, cried, pleaded with him to please have my back and say something to them. He tells me he is not comfortable with confrontation. When we get in arguments about this he gets mad at me. He does not apologize for anything they have done. He does not emphasis in anyway. He sits there and says “I don’t know what to say”. This has happened so many times I’m feeling stupid for staying with him for so long. He has clearly chosen to not defend me. I am afraid to leave as he works (I’m the stay at home grandma) and he has threatened to take the kids saying they are his grandchildren and no court would allow me to have them (I have been 24/7 their main caretaker for over 7 years). One is 10 the other 7. They have no other maternal female in their lives. I know he would do this just to hurt me. His entire family only thinks of themselves. Kids do not come first with him and his daughters. It’s all about them. I cannot leave these children. I love them as my own. I have no money and no place to go. The house I bought and when we got married he moved in. His salary has been paying mortgage so this house is no longer all mine. I feel trapped in a marriage with a man who is more in love with his daughters than his wife. I want him to have my back but her clearly refuses. Does anyone have any advice.

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