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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I’ll try and make this short…

Last week my dad grabbed my wife by the face and pulled her in for a ‘happy new year kiss’ on the lips despite her trying to pull away. Needless to say she felt extremely uncomfortable. The following day I went to speak to my parents, my mum was understanding but dad got defensive and told me to f-off.

My 3 older siblings have now gotten involved and I’ve been welcomed with phone calls of guilt trips about my dad saying I’ve added to his mental health problems, I’ve ruined the family and that my wife is controlling me among other things. They’re also fixated that I mentioned some childhood stuff to my mum (but that my mum brought up at the time) about and they keep claiming I’m digging up the past and me and my wife are out to ‘get him’. They think I’m having a mental health crisis also.

My siblings never react well to something negative against the ‘core family’ and seem act with aggression as opposed to a rational conversation. Doesn’t help that they are very protective of dad and will always defend him.

I feel like the black sheep for standing up for my wife and having a different point of view. They now think my wife is a narcissist and have warped my views of them. It’s on our minds 24/7 and we’re just so sad and frustrated and confused trying to figure this all out.
 

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I’ll give you a great piece of advice as the black sheep of my own family. The more you engage them the more they remain with influence over you. When I cut all contact and went 100% silent my life and marriage improved greatly. My family came back around eventually but the dynamics were extremely different. My mother and father never gave me one single problem again and it became very clear to them on which side of the fence I was standing.
 

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You did the right thing. That was very in appropriate. This adding to his mental health thing is nonsense, it's all very manipulative.
I am sorry the rest of the family are being so awful about it and trying to turn you against your wife. You may have to stop contact for a while and see if things calm down.
 

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Last week my dad grabbed my wife by the face and pulled her in for a ‘happy new year kiss’ on the lips despite her trying to pull away. Needless to say she felt extremely uncomfortable. The following day I went to speak to my parents, my mum was understanding but dad got defensive and told me to f-off.
How exactly did you bring it up? How come it didn't stop there?

My 3 older siblings have now gotten involved and I’ve been welcomed with phone calls of guilt trips about my dad saying I’ve added to his mental health problems,
What are those? Are they being treated?

They’re also fixated that I mentioned some childhood stuff to my mum
That may have been a bad idea. Learn to stay on topic. Don't do "and another thing" even if someone else tries to get you to.

My siblings never react well to something negative against the ‘core family’ and seem act with aggression as opposed to a rational conversation. Doesn’t help that they are very protective of dad and will always defend him.
They idealise him. You can't change that. It's not a matter of "rational conversation", I'm sure you know that.

And you already know all this, so how come you even went to them about the kiss, knowing how it would play out? You kind of walked yourself into this.
I feel like the black sheep for standing up for my wife and having a different point of view.
Black sheep is your role in the drama. I suggest you decline to play it any more. You'll never change them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
How exactly did you bring it up? How come it didn't stop there?

I just said to him that he made my wife feel uncomfortable and she’d like some space. When he came back with ‘that’s what you do at new years’ I tried to explain how it made her feel and that’s when I was told where to go. It didn’t stop there as when I spoke to my mum about it she opened up a bit about their situation (basically they’re not happy with their current lives) and she then went on to tell one sibling then it spread…

What are those? Are they being treated?

Depression and yes, though he’s improved more recently.

That may have been a bad idea. Learn to stay on topic. Don't do "and another thing" even if someone else tries to get you to.

Agreed, it was just a passing comment made by me to my mum and it’s been blown up. They keep bringing up now when I tell them it’s nothing to do with the situation at hand.


They idealise him. You can't change that. It's not a matter of "rational conversation", I'm sure you know that.

I should maybe have meant reasonable. The messages and phone calls have been very aggressive and are saying hurtful things about me and my wife which again has nothing to do with the chat with my dad.

And you already know all this, so how come you even went to them about the kiss, knowing how it would play out? You kind of walked yourself into this.

I spoke to mum then dad just to let them know if we go quiet and not have flimsy excuses. I was worried it would happen again and cause an even bigger scene in front of more family and kids.
 

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Eccck, personally I think your dad deserves a shallow grave.

Grabbing her by the face? You should have broken both his knees, then & there.

Sadly, both are illegal. I'd take Mr. Married's advice & tell them all to go to Hell.

I had something similar happen and it was inappropriate, unacceptable and emotionally painful.

Seriously, you're better off without them.
 

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I’ll try and make this short…

Last week my dad grabbed my wife by the face and pulled her in for a ‘happy new year kiss’ on the lips despite her trying to pull away. Needless to say she felt extremely uncomfortable. The following day I went to speak to my parents, my mum was understanding but dad got defensive and told me to f-off.

My 3 older siblings have now gotten involved and I’ve been welcomed with phone calls of guilt trips about my dad saying I’ve added to his mental health problems, I’ve ruined the family and that my wife is controlling me among other things. They’re also fixated that I mentioned some childhood stuff to my mum (but that my mum brought up at the time) about and they keep claiming I’m digging up the past and me and my wife are out to ‘get him’. They think I’m having a mental health crisis also.

My siblings never react well to something negative against the ‘core family’ and seem act with aggression as opposed to a rational conversation. Doesn’t help that they are very protective of dad and will always defend him.

I feel like the black sheep for standing up for my wife and having a different point of view. They now think my wife is a narcissist and have warped my views of them. It’s on our minds 24/7 and we’re just so sad and frustrated and confused trying to figure this all out.
First, I'm surprised dear old dad didn't have his nose pushed through the back of his head.

Anyone stupid enough to try that with my wife would be hurt badly and that would be before I even got to him.

Secondly, you're better off without a bunch of deranged lunatics that condone sexual assault.
 

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My father was inappropriate with women and enjoyed crossing boundaries. If people protested, it was always somehow their fault and he the injured party. Eventually we went no contact for good. A painful decision, but not one I ultimately regretted.

Once you are married, your spouse (and children if you have them) are your family and you are absolutely right to do whatever is necessary to protect them.

My father was a diagnosed malignant narcissist, bipolar and a predator, and I was fortunate to have the support of my mom and sister, making my decision easier, but some degree of distance seems definitely called for. People who refuse to respect boundaries or empathize are dangerous to your mental health. Neither being depressed nor a parent make their wants and ego more important than your family’s well-being.
 

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Set maintain and enforce proper boundaries at all times, not just regarding this certain instance.

Life goes so much better for folks who set, maintain and enforce proper boundaries with family, friends, neighbors, coworkers etc.

What your father did was despicable.

Any in your family trying to stick up for him are being despicable too.

My first husband had many faults, but he sided with our children and me regarding his mean and abusive mother.

OP, you need to come down hard on this and remain that way from here on out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Op does your father act like that with other family members? IE other DIL's?
My wife is only DIL in the family. He’s not overly affectionate with my sisters and not at all with my mum. They also don’t have the kind of relationship where they’re chummy either. They exchange pleasantries and that’s it.
 

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FunkyBurrito

Not quite the same but similar - boorish/disrespectful family

took GF (already intending to marry) to visit relatives - aunt/uncle/mother/cousins etc.

Aunt/Uncle have always had ratty-ass anti-social mutts - small ones though. So not a deathly danger from a dog attack.

First time visit w/GF. Dog goes usual nutso barking and snapping. So Aunt puts dog in a bedroom and shuts the door.
For ?? reason a bit later cousin opens door (not her bedroom either) and dog zings out and bites GF on ankle. Some less than perfectly Southern language spoken and GF & I take a hike and go to local drug store for medical supplies. Called mother and asked to have rabies vaccination verified.

Never went back to vist aunt and uncle. Also wrote off cousin - opening the door was like last 1% of crap she was always doing.

Hindsight - should have gone to medical facility as animal bites are mandatory reported to "Animal Control" who pay a visit to the offending puppy owners and will take animal if vaccination cannot not be verified.
Just for "spite" I might add -

Regarding your episode with low boundary "father" - tell him to eff-off and go dark. Ditto for the rest of the similarly thinking members.

Bonus! Wife's family large and ALL of them have "good ol' Southern boundaires." Net win for me.

Trying to think of any ethnic group or population on the planet (currently living) that "approves" of dear old dad trading spit with sons wife. Can't come up with a claim I have ever read about such.

Best way to avoid such possibly happening? Put some distance between boundary offenders any yourselves.

Wife (and children?) are now your family and your responsible for protecting them in all ways to the best of your ability.
 

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@FunkyBurrito, a couple of thoughts from someone who has had to navigate boundaries with a mentally ill family member.
You said your father has been dealing with major depression and seems better lately. If he's exhibiting uncharacteristic behavior then he needs to be encouraged by everyone to see to his doctor. His diagnosis may not be correct and/or he may need a change of medication. Serious mental illnesses are not an excuse for abusive behavior but knowing that he has a MI will put you and your wife in a better place to not take his behavior personally. How the rest of your family reacts is not your problem. If there are childhood issues you are stuggling with, then see a therapist to work through them. Don't talk to your mother or siblings about it, they will only get defensive or create family drama.
Having said that, you have every right to tell your father that what he did was inappropriate and made your wife and you uncomfortable and that, if it happens again, you will have to take a break from any contact with him. End of conversation. If he starts in with calling you names, being verbally abusive, then you can say that you cannot talk to him when he is being disrespectful and then walk away. Do not engage with anyone else, just go. When my MI family member starts in with that behavior, I simply say, "I love you, but I cannot allow you to be disrepectable toward me. We can talk another time when you can stay calm and not call me names." Granted, that may not work for you, none of us know your history with your father and family.
There's a saying in Al-Anon that I repeat to myself often: "Heal me, bless him." Take care of yourself and your family, and detach with love.
 

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My wife is only DIL in the family. He’s not overly affectionate with my sisters and not at all with my mum. They also don’t have the kind of relationship where they’re chummy either. They exchange pleasantries and that’s it.
So it's just your wife that he snogs😲😐
Has he been at all inappropriate with her before?
 
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