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So me and my husband have been seperated for 4 months now and we. have decided to get back together. We have a daughter and were renting before. We are in the process of getting a new house to rent. Things are good. We have a appointment with a marriage councellor, we are seeing a financial councellor and we are finally communicating about our goals and everything in general.

The problem is my family (mother and sister primarily). I have been living with them while we have been separated. They have always loved my husband and he did something that they didn't approve of (I can't tell you but its totally forgivable) They are very cold and mean spirited and just can't seem to forgive. Anyways that is not the problem. My problem is that I havne't told them we are getting back together yet but have to as its approaching in 2 weeks. They are very controlling and never let me get a word in. Do you think telling them by email about me and my husband is approppriate or should I do it in person? Regardless I will have to talk to them about it but I thought telling them the most important part by email would give them time to think about what they are going to say rather than attacking me. They want to control me and especially my daughter but I can't allow it to happen. Living with them this past 4 months has really allowed me to get to know them better and I am not sure I like this side. I really just want to focus on getting my family back(me,husband and daughter) and do not need their negativity.

Any help would be great!
 

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Not a good idea to provide reconciliation information before you are out and settled. Telling your mother and your sister, you are moving out to rent elsewhere prepares the way for your leaving; just don't mention anything about jointly renting with your husband. Also keep them away from helping you with the move or coming into contact with your husband before the move. Let them find out after you have moved in and been away for a few days.

I could write reams about the meddling of family and friends when there is a marriage breakdown/divorce. Yes we need our families when it all falls apart and we are broken and need practical/financial/emotional support as we go through it and start to emerge from it. The only problem is that family and friends, whilst thinking they are protecting one of their own, get locked into maintaining the enemy status of the ex. As you the person whose relationship fell apart starts to hurt a little less, finds some inner peace, begins to remember the things you loved about your ex, starts to forgive and take some responsibility for what went wrong, your family and friends are still in rescue you/protect you/cut off your ex mode.

It is hard for them to come back from this as their relationship with you is now defined by and based on what you have gone through. Your vulnerability has now placed them at the centre of your life and giving up this role is very hard for your family and friends as the return of your ex means they will get pushed out from being your advisors and confidants. They now believe they know what is best for you because of all you have shared and having been there to support you through it. Some of them will see your getting back with your ex as a personal betrayal even if they will dress it up as being about protecting you from getting hurt again. There will be talk about how little you think of yourself to get back with the ex and what a bad example you are setting for your children. This would all be true if you had been in an abusive relationship be it emotional or physical.

A lot of the time, marriages fail because most of us were too immature to know how to handle things, so the negative feelings clouded everything, as we tried to muddle through and make the other person meet our expectations in the marriage. By the time we are moving out/divorcing, we are raw with hurt, exhausted from the power struggle, disgusted with our spouse and desperate for those who care about us to appreciate how much we had suffered. Our revealing and sharing helps us to offload and cope but the people who are supporting us through this get stuck with the negative information about our ex. They can no longer see or hear about your ex without thinking about all the negative stuff. They are mainly hurt for you but they also want to protect themselves from having to deal with anymore drama involving your ex.

They have got used to the new level of access they have to your life and find it very hard to revert back to being people who are outside your personal situation. It is especially worse where there are unhealthy family dynamics involving hidden or expressed resentment at the life you had had with your spouse. Your return to the family fold gives those who resented your finding a spouse, making a home and having a family of your own, a chance to gloat and beat you down. Their advice whilst dressed up as trying to help you deal with the practical reality of your divorce is really all about them putting you in the place where they have felt you belonged. They treat your divorce as your punishment for daring to think you could do better than them and leave them behind. In the end, even if you were not getting back with your ex, lessening your involvement with your supposed supporters becomes the only way to get healthy and take back control of your life. I am not saying do not lean on your family and friends but be ready for the fall out as you start to find your feet and are not needing them as much anymore.

Family and friends are not the only ones who meddle in undermining possible marriage reconciliation. Just look around the various websites about how to handle divorce and most of them provide the sort of advice that treats your ex as your enemy. Someone you have to get over and forget. Pushing divorced people to get into other relationships as part of finding the new you is very common on these sites. This sort of “professional advice”, combined with family/friendship forget the ex advice, makes it very hard for a lot of separated couples/divorced couples from stepping back, swallowing their pride and reaching out to their ex. Sometimes reconciliation does not work out but it is better to have tried and failed, especially where you have children involved.

Check out this one link I found that does a good job of pointing out the damage done by advice givers. It is written as a religious message but the exposing of the damage done by advisors is the best I have read on the net.

PS: Good idea to turn off the sound if you don’t like the music on the site but still solid advice.

Beware of Bad Advice from People

Good luck with your move and reconciliation.
 

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Congratulations! 4 months was exactly the time we were separated. Things are much better now. But like you the family can keep the pain going on. It is really sad to see some people just can not help the marriage by being adults about it and forgiving.

My family welcomed her back to all functions, but hers was like yours, less than welcoming. They even went so far as to not address Christmas cards to both of us, just her. Talk about missing an opportunity for good. The ironic thing is how un-Christian that was at Christmas.

Anyway, you marriage comes first. I think you should address them face to face. Do not let them control you and if you see it, call them on it. You may want to prepare a script of how you want to tell them. It might help to start by thanking them for all they have done through this hard time, but your marriage is very important.

Maybe you can have some moral support with you?

I wish you well!
 
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