All Articles Tagged "Faling out with your man’s family"
Parents don’t like me. Let me be more specific with it: Mothers and sisters don’t seem to like me. When I started dating during my teens I had some less than favorable “meet the parents” moments. There was the boyfriend I was in love with in 9th grade whose Haitian mother always sounded like she was in the middle of a domestic revolution whenever she answered the phone. That summer, a paid internship painting over graffiti placed me with a guy who started off as a good friend who eventually grew into more. When we started dating, his family’s issues came bubbling to the surface and I figured out that the problem was more about his mother’s personal substance abuse issues than any imagined conflict with me. Then there was the first “mature” relationship I really had with a young man from the suburbs. When I first met his mother and sister, the look they gave me would have you think he brought the entire ‘hood with him, and in their eyes he probably had. I was from Philly (didn’t matter what part of Philly, it was just bad enough that is was Philly for them) so of course they assumed I was trying to trap their college-educated son, make him my baby’s daddy and probably be the reason he would fall victim to inner-city violence in a tragic First 48-style love triangle.
So after that point in my life, I’d given up on trying to be anyone’s daughter-in-law of the year. I am not a demure doll with a painted expression that agrees with everything my man’s family says because I don’t want to rock the boat, but at the same time I don’t think I’m one who brings drama and ruckus just because I can. In my experience with dealing with mothers and their sons or sisters and their brothers, it hasn’t seemed to matter what kind of person I am. All that matters is that I’m another woman in their loved one’s life and I have to be assigned some test to be granted membership in their circle of trust. In my experiences, the thing I never understood was why they had to be so nasty about it. There’s a difference between wanting the best for your son or brother and just wanting to be difficult.
I sympathize with the fact that it can be a hard transition for mothers and sisters who are accustomed to being the only women in a young man’s life and then suddenly feeling like their role of mama bear is threatened. The good news is, I am not looking for a son or a brother. I am looking for a boyfriend. All I’m asking is for mothers and sisters to lighten up and not make assumptions about a woman whom you know nothing about. Remember, you once were in my shoes too. There comes a time when a woman has to let a man be a man and make his own decisions, and that doesn’t mean that he’s being disrespectful. If you trust that you’ve, in fact, raised him right, then you should know that you can trust his judgment and respect his choices.