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Not Getting Married
Old 11-03-2009, 02:49 PM
 
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I have been dating my boyfriend for 3 years and Friday night he asked me to marry him. I said yes. Throughout our relationship, we went through difficult times (I took care of my grandmother full time during graduate school and she passed away).

My parents hate him. My mom cannot even talk about him. They say he is not good enough for me; that he is weak, stick in the mud, frugal, not Catholic, unambitious, we are a relationship of gratitute, etc. I always thought it would get better but my boyfriend called to talk to my dad the other day and my mom called and wrote me emails saying, "Just say no. Run away." Let me just say that my boyfriend went through my grandmother's care (advanced dementia) and death with me, supported me during my first year of teaching, and thinks the world of me. He is not abusive and he has a good job.

My parents say I have low self-esteem and am grabbing at anyone to marry me. They say that I will be very unhappy and that I am just be stubborn and sophomoric. They say I will look back at my decision if I choose to marry him and say, "I wish they hadn't told me so." There have been many times that they have yelled at me over it (I don't yell back). My dad says my mom will not even talk about him without throwing a fit.

The really sad thing is that I guess I am going to have to break up with him. I am a terrible person. I don't know if I will find love again, maybe I will, but I'm pretty sure that he is dead set on me so I am ruining his dreams of a wife and a family. I just can't live with the fighting and arguing with my parents for the rest of my life. They are getting older. So there it is. I guess tomorrow I will give the ring back and that will be that. I just hate myself.


 

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Old 11-03-2009, 03:01 PM
 
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First let me say I am so sorry that you feel you have to break your engagement to make your parents happy. However, I don't believe you should sacrifice your happiness because they don't agree with your choice in a husband. You've been with him a long time and he has seen you through a very difficult time in your life. Will anyone be good enough for your parents? Don't give up on a man who seems to truly love you and be a good partner. Maybe you need to have a talk with your parents and tell them that you won't be forced to choose between them and the man you want to marry. I hope this works out well for you.

I just want to add that my parents didn't like DH when we got married 16 years ago but over the years, they've come to realize he is a great husband and father and is a perfect match for me. Maybe your parents will come around as well if they realize they don't have a choice.
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:02 PM
 
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Your an adult, right? Then why are you letting your parents control your life? You have to do whatever will make you happy. Then again, sorry but the last part of your posts sounds very immature.
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:08 PM
 
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I've read your post twice, and I'm still trying to understand what it is about your bf that your parents really object to. I'm trying to decide how much of the things they mentioned are real issues, and how much is a smokescreen for what they really don't like about him.

One thing that screams at me is that he isn't Catholic. I just don't understand why religion is so valued when it's so divisive. Could it be that they dislike him just for that? I've seen it so many times w/ different faiths, all believing they are the only ones who have it all figured out.

How is your bf weak? Is he? If he has a good job, then maybe they have a different view of "ambition" than he does. Making a lot of $$$ doesn't equate success for me, but it does for a lot of people.

Hmmmm....I'm at a loss here! What do your friends think of him? It would be interesting to know the opinions of those who aren't so emotionally wrapped up in you.

My suggestion would be to talk to a counselor before you throw in the towel at your parents' behest. I have been married to man for almost 20 years that my mother strongly disapproved of---and it caused a big rift between us. I decided it was my life, and I was going to live it. I have no regrets---and my mom finally came around when she saw my dh really was a keeper. I wish you the very best of luck.
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I'm on the fence
Old 11-03-2009, 03:10 PM
 
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I am truly sorry with what you have to deal with right now. I can't even imagine if I had to decide. However I can say that if I were in your shoes I wouldn't want to have a rocky relationship with my parents because they are the world to me. Without them, my life would be EXTREMELY dull. If you are close with your parents then you might want to think twice. But if your heart feels strong about your man then listen to your heart.


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I say, Follow your gut!
Old 11-03-2009, 03:14 PM
 
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If you know he is good and good for you, then this is NOT the time for Father (Mother) knows Best! My mom hated my (now) DH and verbally fought with him more than once. She even pushed him once during a fight--I think hoping he would respond in kind and she could call him a wife beater....

HE stood up to her and so did I. Nineteen years later, she now admits I am (was) right and she was wrong. I cannot imagine my life without him and he says the same.

If it makes you this miserable to even think of breaking up with him, RE-THINK it.... You are an adult. Make your own decisions. Unfortunately, you may be miserable either way but love is a tricky thing...I love my parents but they are no longer a PART of me--he is.

Just think about it long and hard and talk to your kind, wonderful man about it.
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:22 PM
 
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Well, I think that there are many, many different issues here.

I can say this only from my experience.

I have always had a great relationship with my parents, and I really do value their opinion on matters. With that said, my parents have also always understood that once I was an adult, they let me make my own choices. I got their opinions if I asked, but they didn't feel the need to share with me otherwise.

I am respectful of them, and they are respectful of me.
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I read your post
Old 11-03-2009, 03:24 PM
 
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I read your post, walked away and thought about it and came back to respond.
I agree with the others. You are an adult. Why should you walk away from someone that has made you happy?
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Think! Stop! Pray!
Old 11-03-2009, 03:26 PM
 
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I was saddened to think that you would break your engagement, If you made a list of the positives and negatives about marrying him, how heavy would the plus side be?

Do you think you have low self esteem? That you are grabbing at this chance to get married?

It sounds (from an outsiders view of your post) that your parents want to control you, and they are a big part of the problem if not the problem itself., no matt er how much you love them.

I would be very sad to know that you let a man go that adores you, and stands by you thru tough times,
Please don't give the ring back, talk to him about your parents concerns, let him know how hard their arguing is for you, and that when you marry, that will be a constant issue.
Is he willing to stand by you thru these tough times?

Are they willing to risk a relationship with grandchildren?

Please, stop think and pray! and then pray some more,
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Back off
Old 11-03-2009, 03:34 PM
 
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I'm afraid that you are going to have to tell your parents to back off. Decent guys are not a dime a dozen. You didn't mention any serious flaws in your fiance. To say your mom is being unreasonable is almost too kind.


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Old 11-03-2009, 03:40 PM
 
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I'm so glad I didn't listen to my mom 27 years ago. She said we did not know each other long enough. We sure do now and I wouldn't change a thing....(well maybe just a quirky habit or two)
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:40 PM
 
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Sometimes, a true love only comes once. There are so many 40+ people out there who live lives of regret. They constantly look back and say, "I wish I had given him/her another chance, and I wish I hadn't broken it off."

In most circumstances, I think it's good if married couples get along with their parents and inlaws. I feel fortunate that I have wonderful inlaws. Having said this, it's your life, not your parents! You have to do what's best for you, not for them! If you're really sure about this guy, be strong and don't be afraid to take your parents on. To be blunt, you're going to be around a lot longer than they are.

PLEASE don't break off this engagement yet! Sit down tonight, and make a list. Try to be as objective as you possibly can. Write down all of your parents' concerns, and ask yourself if there is any validity to any of them. Also, sit down with some friends, male and female, and get their opinions. Tell them that you expect them to be honest. Tell them that you won't be angry if they tell you not to marry him.

As a guy who has been happily married for a long time, here are some other questions I'd ask myself:
1. Do the two of you have a similar level of education?
2. Can you picture him spending nights out with his buddies drinking?
3. Do you share his dreams of a family?
4. Do you share similar interests?
5. Is he easy to talk to?

If the answers to 1, 3, 4, and 5 are yes, then give serious thought to marrying him. It might be a good idea if the two of you go to a clergyperson and/or marriage counselor to discuss your concerns.

One final thought: Do you get along with his parents? After you're married, could you see yourself spending more time with them than with your parents?

I have a feeling that if you get married, your parents will slowly adjust. Be prepared to be very firm with them. It might take a while, but in time things will get a little better.

Listen to your brain and to your heart. If you're positive he's the one, don't let him get away. The two of you might be meant for each other. My wife and I have minor disagreements now and then, but I honestly couldn't imagine being married to anyone else. I'm convinced that we're meant to be together.

Good luck to you, and please let us know what happens.
 
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engagement
Old 11-03-2009, 03:46 PM
 
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It's very clear from your post that your post that you are torn between your parents and your boyfriend. That being said, it is your life, and your choice. If your parents can't respect your choice then it's their loss, and they'll have to live with the knowledge that they are being judgemental and disrespectful to you and your boyfriend. You need to do what makes you happy, and you love your boyfriend, and he's a good man, which he seems to be, then you should be with him. Your parents need to be accepting of you, and that means that they need to accept your boyfriend too. If it comes down to it, and you marry him, if your parents dislike him so much, then they don't deserve to have a relationship with you, and they can spend their lives without a relationship with you. I know that sounds harsh, but if you have a good man in your life, and it's clear that he's committed to you, then you need to live the life that you want. Before you call off your engagement, I think you and your boyfriend need to sit down and talk to your parents and let them know how you feel and what your decision is, and whether they like it or not is not their choice. You're an adult, you need to live your life the way you want and do what makes you happy. I truly hope things work out for the two of you.
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I can't tell you which path to take
Old 11-03-2009, 03:52 PM
 
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and I am not making light of this incredibly difficult decision. Years ago though I heard a comic and his comment might be relevant..... Isn't it interesting that the man who was not good enough for your daughter could father such perfect grandchildren? Good luck with your decisions, remember, as pp's have said either choice will be hard.
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marriage
Old 11-03-2009, 03:58 PM
 
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I had some trouble with my mom and my husband when we first got married. I told her straight out that my marriages vows said to cling to him and forsake all others. I told her I would honor those vows, so if she wanted me to pick I would have to pick him. It was very strong but she backed off.

I was totally sure of my choice and remain so to this day. That does not mean that life is smooth sailing and everything is easy. Marriage is a struggle and takes total commitment. You need to decide whom to commit to - your parents or your future husband.

Do not give the ring back yet. Think about it. It is the most important decision you will probably ever make. It defines the rest of your life. Be sure.
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Old 11-03-2009, 04:00 PM
 
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First of all, I am sorry you are going through this. How does your boyfriend make you feel? Is he attentive to your needs as well as his own? It sounds like he has been supportive of you in the past. What specific things has he done that your parents are so concerned? You seem to be very concerned about what your parents think and that you are ruining your boyfriend's life. What about you? What do you want? How do you truly feel about him? Do you want to spend every single moment with him? Are you head-over-heals in love? Do you want to grow old with him and have him be the father of your kids, if you want them?

My parents tried to talk me out of marrying my boyfriend. We just celebrated 21 years of marriage. One of the main things that kept us together is that we learned to depend on one another and never ran to our parents in times of trouble. We were determined to make things work.
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I agree with a few
Old 11-03-2009, 04:12 PM
 
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of the posters.

Why exactly do your parents not like your boyfriend?

Why are you letting your parents run your life when you are an adult?

I understand that you don't want to hurt your parents, but sometimes they don't know what is best, and don't know someone they way you do.

I say you need to talk to your parents and make them see that their accusations are not correct of him, if you believe they are not.

Just because someone is not the same religion as you is not a reason to dislike someone or not marry them.

If this person makes you happy then you need to prove that to your parents.

Good Luck
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my parents didn't like him
Old 11-03-2009, 04:44 PM
 
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either. But over the years (30) they came to see him as a strong and dependable, caring and supportive, loving husband and father. Plus he's handy with all those little household and automotive repairs that none of my very educated brothers can do. Eventually my Dad told me that no man would ever really be good enough for his daughter, he realized he couldn't choose, and they backed off of being involved in my siblings choices because of what they learned.
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Old 11-03-2009, 05:04 PM
 
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My husband and I have been married for 29 years, About 10 years ago, my husband and I were at my parent's house talking to my mother. Someone made a comment about my daughter's boyfriend. My mom then commented that she had only said something one time about a boy we brought home and she was wrong. I asked her what she said and she said, "I told you that you could do better. I was wrong." My husband was standing there by me at the time. I told her I didn't remember that. She said she was glad I didn't listen. I was only 20 years old when we married. My mom is a quiet person and definitely not vocal like yours.

Marriage is meant to be forever but it is no piece of cake. We must all work at it. You and your fiance have been working on a relationship for 3 years. I would think you know each other well. I would never tell you to defy your parents, but I would never tell you to leave your boyfriend because your mother does not like him.

All this said, you need to follow your heart. Hopefully, your parents will stand by you in whatever decision you make.

(Is the underlying reason they don't like him because he is not Catholic? I don't mean anything by that because I am Catholic. I married a Catholic, but I have brothers and sisters who did not and their spouse are great.)
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Old 11-03-2009, 05:07 PM
 
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I went through exactly the same thing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! EXACTLY!!!!!!!

I was always very close to my parents, always wanted to please them. But they didn't like my boyfriend. We dated for even longer than you did, got engaged, and tried and tried to make things right with my parents, but they wouldn't have it. It was the most miserable time of my life! I prayed and prayed about it. I sought council from friends, clergy, and counselors. After a year and a half of being engaged, I finally gave in and told my fiance that I wanted to mary him, NOW. So we got the marriage liscense the next day, waited the three days, and then got married in my minister's house after school without telling anyone. I wrote my parents a letter a few weeks later. It took a little while, but they realized that they had to accpet it if they were going to continue their relationship with me. Now let me say, I never, ever, ever in my life would have ever thought I would do this. I am like you, I want to avoid conflict (at all costs). I am still surpised that I took that leap of faith.

Now things are great! I would not change a thing! I don't regret it one bit. Yeah, it would have been nice to have had a real wedding with all my friends and family there, but in reality, if I had done that, they would have made it miserable for me.

This is a good book that got me started in the right direction of separating myself from my family as an adult: Boundaries by Cloud and Townsend. Also find some trusted friends and elders to advise you. If you really truly believe that you would be throwing away your chance at love and a family, please reconsider. It is your life, and your decisions. Your parents love you, but they won't have to live in your shoes. You are the one who will have to live with this decision. I had to realize that if I married my fiance, my life might not turn out like my parents. We might have different values and standards (as far as spending money or roles in the marriage) but that is our choice.
Don't rush into a decision. Take some time for yourself and figure it out. Feel free to pm me if you want to talk! I feel for you! I know this is incredibly difficult!
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Someone gave me this advice years ago...
Old 11-03-2009, 05:10 PM
 
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I hope this does not sound hurtful, and I understand how hard this is, especially if you are close to your parents, which it sounds like you are. Here's the advice - your parents will not be around for the rest of YOUR life. You can't live your life for them, you have to live your life for you. I would think very carefully before breaking the engagement just because of your parents' opinions.
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My two cents worth
Old 11-03-2009, 05:14 PM
 
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I know you love your parents.......but I would have to tell them to let you make your own decision. My brother did not want me to date my husband (wasn't divorced...) but I told him to let me make the choice I am an adult....we have been married 6 years with a son that is the light of everyone's life...

Good luck....pray and then listen......God will direct you like he did me.

Keep us posted

Good luck
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2 cents more
Old 11-03-2009, 05:48 PM
 
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I would have to echo much of what has already been said. Your parents are not marrying him, you are. You're an adult and its YOUR choice, not theirs. Yes, it may cause some tension right now, but you have to make your own life choices that are best for YOU...not to make others happy. If you break up because of parent pressure, then there's probably going to be no stopping them from controlling more of your life. If it's your choice for YOUR reasons to break up, then great, but if you break up because of your parents' opinions, then you might as well move back home and let them control the rest of your life. Someone said the last part of your post sounded immature. I have to agree. Don't have a pity party, just take control of your life.
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My 2 cents
Old 11-03-2009, 06:02 PM
 
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These are my first thoughts-
1. Do your parents have justifciation for calling him those names?

2. Say if he is "a stick in the mud"- does that bother you? Do you mind if he is?

3. If he is "frugal"--is that the worst thing in the world?


Descriptive words that would send me a red flag are: abusive, controlling, dishonest, cheater, stealer, etc.

If you are an adult, and he is who you'd like to wake up to each morning, then it's your decision.

Wow- "just giving the ring back tomorrow" sounds like an immature thing to do. You didn't meet him last week, you've known him for a long time. Talk with him.

Last edited by SunnyGals; 11-03-2009 at 08:16 PM..
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no, no, no
Old 11-03-2009, 06:07 PM
 
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You've dated him for 3 years, know he asks you to marry him & you're going to break it off because your parents don't like him? What am I missing here? Why don't your parents like him, I know what you said in the original post but there has to be more. They don't like him because he is frugal, unambitious but he has a good job, weak what does that mean? We need more info here. Do they really have good substantial reasons why you shouldn't marry him.
I understand & respect that you want a good relationship with your parents but that has to be a two-way street. How will you feel toward your parents if you break this off when you really love him? Is there another reason why you are hesitant to marry him?
My in-laws did not like me & didn't want their son to marry me but he did. After they realized that he was serious they finally gave it up & accepted me, we have a good relationship now. We've been married 30 years.
I too have daughters & want them to marry men that love, respect, & cherish them. That may not be the exact man that I would pick for them but it needs to be their decision. Unless there was a serious problem with the man (abusive, alcoholic, etc.) I wouldn't interfere. If I have done my job right they shouldn't pick somebody like that.
You need to decide if you want to marry him or not. It isn't your parents' decision.
I'm sorry that you have to deal with this. Good luck in whatever you choose!
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Old 11-03-2009, 06:16 PM
 
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I have not read any of the responses, but if you are not mature enough to make this decision without your parents input, than you are CORRECT to back off, and take some time to grow up.

I am so sorry. This has to be SO hard.
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Old 11-03-2009, 06:20 PM
 
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When my parents announced their engagement to their parents my mother's parents offered her a car if she didn't get married. My father's mother just looked at my mom and gave her the thumbs down sign with a raspberry. My parents have been happily married since 1966! Both sides got over it and eventually coexisted at the holiday table.
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Old 11-03-2009, 06:25 PM
 
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I hope that you have taken everyone's thoughts into consideration before you made a final decision. I just wanted to add that my mom too called my DH names 18 years ago. Thank goodness I followed my heart because he's the best partner I could have asked for. I hope you make the best decision for you.
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Old 11-03-2009, 06:28 PM
 
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It does sound like you have some low self esteem going on, but it sounds like it was probably your parents who brought that on. If they yell at you over him, and correct me if I'm wrong, but I would guess they have yelled at you over the years for other things.

Moving on to your upcoming wedding. I would NOT break it off. This man sounds like he loves you and thinks the world of you. He was willing to help you care for your sick grandmother and was supportive of you through a very difficult time. This says a lot about him as a person. He sounds like the type that anyone would be happy and proud to have for a spouse.

As much as you love your parents, and by all means you should, you are now an adult and you have the right to make your own decisions. I am no doctor and so psychologist, but my guess is that if you break this off, down the road you will be dealing with a built up of resentment toward your parents that will be difficult if not impossible to shake. You have to make the decision that is right for you, but my advice is to NOT give back the ring and continue on with the engagement.

You are in my prayers.

Nancy
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Give it more thought
Old 11-03-2009, 06:37 PM
 
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My DH and I had not dated for very long and almost everyone had something to say about our decision to get married.

My mom told me on my wedding night "Remember - this doesn't have to be forever."

We've been married for almost 27 years now. My parents often wondered what I saw in him and quickly question my decision if I accidently mention something that irks me about him. After 27 years, though, even they have to admit it has worked for us.

You really do have to make this decision for yourself.
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Old 11-03-2009, 07:11 PM
 
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I am a mom and I am picky about who my children marry, but it has never my opinion that has mattered. The bottom line is I want mychildren to be happy. The ones that have married so far have made great choices.If your BF is everything you want in a husband and you are happy marry him. My mom said ask if you are more miserable with him or without him? Let that be the answer. If you love him and he is supportive and has goals that are your goals too I say listen to your heart. A lifetime is a long time to be without the one you love. There is a time to follow your dreams and a time to listen to and respect your parents. Tell your parents that you love them but you love your BF too and you are going to marry him. Let them know that you are not going to listen to negative remarks about the young man. If they start in on him get up and leave. I wish you luck and will be praying you will be inspired to make the right choice for you.
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Old 11-03-2009, 07:20 PM
 
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Go with your heart and the rest will follow!! You have to think about your own happiness and your parents should care more about yours as well.

My grandmother tried to break my mother and father up while they were dating. They've been married for 29 years.
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Old 11-03-2009, 07:41 PM
 
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Marry him.
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they will come around
Old 11-03-2009, 07:51 PM
 
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if he is your true love. It may be sooner or it may be later, but I believe that if you listen to your heart, it benefits everyone whether or not they know it
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Old 11-03-2009, 08:46 PM
 
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Marry him. Stop worrying about your parents. Believe me. While not exactly in the same situation, I know that WHOEVER I chose, no matter how wonderful, successful, intelligent and compassionate, my parents would never attend the wedding, never accept my partner, and never accept any children we have together.

While I may find the perfect partner, I have come to accept that my parents will never accept HER. Because I value my own well-being, happiness and future, I have had to choose my own chance love over their love (or lack of unconditional love) for me. It's sad, but they are very homophobic and I am trapped to basically a destiny of hearing about their unhappiness in my life "choices."

It could be worse.

I say, if you have found love, KEEP IT!
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Old 11-04-2009, 04:09 AM
 
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Thank you for your words of encouragement to those that gave them. I did not give the ring back--I was upset when I wrote the post and at my wit's end because this didn't happen yesterday; this has been an ongoing saga in my life for the last two years and I just find it very hard. People are telling me what is best and at some point, you have to listen to somebody; you have to make a choice to hurt someone.

I know some of you think I am immature or have low self-esteem but all I can say is that I was dramatic and while I really do feel those things, you don't know me and shouldn't rush to judge me. If you didn't like what I had to say, just don't say anything. You're not being helpful by calling me immature. Maybe you thought you were. I'm sorry if I was irrational.

I have a lot of thinking to do--not that I haven't done it extensively over the past two years of conflict. The funny thing is, I always thought it would get better with my parents, but it's only gotten exponentially worse. It is at the point where I am tired of the phone calls and the tantrums and I just want it to end. I am tired of being upset and living two lives and yes, I have thought I don't know what is best for myself after all of this hoopla. THAT'S why I was thinking of giving up because now I am doubting myself after not giving in these past two years. It's hard to think of everything in black and white when people you love are constantly telling you over and over that you are making a horrible mistake.

Anyway, now that I've defended myself and my thoughts I will say that my parents have met him only two times and he is not abusive and has a good job and makes more money than I do. I am SO ENCOURAGED by your personal stories of turning this around. I am particularly encouraged by the story from ANNGIRL. I feel like you are me. You really struck me today--especially the part about thinking you never thought you would do this. Maybe that is the part I struggle with the most. I never thought I'd be the one going against her parents, whose relatives would be upset at her wedding, who would be the one CAUSING strife in the family. I never thought people would hang up in anger on me, not talk to me, cry over the decisions I'm making, or that despite everything I do, I could not even make this a LITTLE bit better. I never thought my grandmother would look at me in distain and say, "Young people only care about themselves, not about their families." I have a difficult time with that part every day. Your suggestion of going to clergy is a good one (as well as others who suggested it) and I've just been worried that they were going to judge me too but you're right, I just need to take that step. KERMIT, you are right also and I am strengthened by your wisdom and insight. I guess it's hard for me to let go but you have and I guess I could too. You are very strong.

Thank you all for your encouragement.
 
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Old 11-04-2009, 05:18 AM
 
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SAD, thanks for getting back to us. All of this reminded me of a girl I knew in high school. We were somewhat friendly (and see each other in passing every once in a while), but we never dated and were never at all serious about each other. She is the youngest in her family, and had very controlling parents (both have since died). She is now in her 50s, and she asked me a few years ago if I knew anyone for her to date. I tried to help, but didn't know anyone. She had some opportunities, and there was at least one guy she was serious about, but her parents nixed everyone. They sadly tried to dominate most aspects of her life. Today she has a very positive attitude, but is full of regret. If she could do it over, I think she would have stood up to her parents.
 
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Old 11-04-2009, 06:36 AM
 
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Get a backbone when it comes to your parents. If they are rejecting him for not being "Catholic," how fair is that. It sounds like you love him and he's a good guy. Live for you,do what you need to do for yourself, or your parents will be making your decisions for the rest of your life.
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Keep the man!
Old 11-04-2009, 07:01 AM
 
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Your parents sound very controlling. If you love him, which is sounds like you love one another go for it. Surely they will come around. He sounds like one you wouldn't want to get away. Hold on, stand your ground, marry him and be happy.

I will pray for you and your parent's decision.

Keep us posted.
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Old 11-04-2009, 08:26 AM
 
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I didn't take your post as immature, just caught between a rock and a hard spot.

I just know how hard finding true love can be, and was so scared that you were going to lose it.

I was also sad for your bf that he would be losing you because of this argument with your parents.

I admire your love and loyalty to your parents AND I want you to be able to follow your heart. PLEASE keep us up-to-date.

Do you have siblings?

Last edited by Mizzou fan; 11-04-2009 at 08:27 AM.. Reason: adding
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