No Family Ties

Dear J & J: I have been dating a woman for eight years. In that time she has only met my family for ten minutes. I have met and treated her family like my own. In fact, I have traveled hundreds of miles to do things and be with her family, but she can't drive two miles to be with mine.

I have done everything but stand on my head and bark like a dog. I have never had this type of experience before — so you may ask why I have stayed so long. Any advice?
D.
Clarence, NY

JILL: Only two guesses as to why she won't see your family: (1) your family makes her feel uncomfortable, or (2) while obviously a good companion in other ways, she doesn't care to meet your needs on this subject.

The problem with both of these guesses is that I — and you — don't really know — until you ask her. Once you have some form of reasoning from her, you'll be able to address your problem more effectively.

Until then, why bother guessing?

JACK: Go ahead and broach the subject one more time. But this time, rather than "standing on your head," calmly ask her why, in all the time you've been together, she has only seen your family once. Tell her that — one way or another — it's important that you know.

Her reasoning will likely be something that you can work with. Perhaps the two of you can strike a deal. On the other hand, if she simply explains that she doesn't care enough about you to visit with your relatives, then that's your cue to begin evaluating your next eight years. Either way, it's far better to know.

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