Author Topic: In-Laws Relationship  (Read 1148 times)

SoVerySad

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In-Laws Relationship
« on: August 13, 2016, 01:07:13 PM »
I am very fortunate to have a wonderful relationship with T's parents. They treat me as if I am their daughter. If anything, our relationship since T's death has only gotten closer. I love them completely. Their home has been my favorite comfort spot since T died. I enjoy being with them and feel really closer to T there.

I have recently been considering the idea that perhaps I might want another relationship at some point. I called his mom and talked to her the day I took off my wedding rings. She was wonderful about it and happy that I will consider another relationship. She had told me quite some time ago that she wanted me to find someone else, because I had been such a good wife to T. She said it would be a shame for another man not to have someone as loving and loyal as I had been to T. She also wants to see me happy as she knows how desperately sad I've been. I have no doubt both my in-laws would welcome and embrace a new person in my life.

So, what is the problem? I'm having such a hard time going to their house right now. I feel badly, because we haven't been visiting them as much. I just miss T so much more when I am there. I don't want to forget him in any way, but I have recognized that I can't keep him foremost in my mind all the time as I had been doing if I hope to ever get unstuck and move forward. All around their house, they have things he made from when he was small and on up. I'm sure those items give them great comfort. I'm trying to figure how to maintain the same level of closeness with them without feeling completely pulled back to T each time I go there. I have to walk past T's room each time I use their bathroom. I stop at the door and look in, remembering all the sweet times we had together there. It is wonderful and brutal at the same time. They are in their upper 80's and don't like to drive much. They prefer to stay home or I would invite them here more. My FIL is having a harder time getting around now.

Anyone else in a similar situation or have any advice to offer?
Without you, Baby, I'm not me.

tybec

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Re: In-Laws Relationship
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2016, 03:32:28 PM »
This is hard. I actually looked up things about this on the internet for assistance. 

I think you are going to have to figure out what works best for you to move forward.  There is no one answer.  I know there are folks out there that maintain great relationships with their in-laws yet move forward, remarry.  I also know there are folks out there who had to let go of their in-laws and change the relationship to move forward.  I know I couldn't think about dating until I let go of my love for my husband as if he were still living.  It took over 2 years for me, and then still 2 more to finally date.  I had to decide I will always love him, but I was not IN love with him anymore as he was not present to grow our relationship/marriage.  It was a hard shift for me to accept.  And with that, changes in the in-law relationships.  My MIL and DH shared the same voice, mannerisms, laugh.  He had her hands, body type, which were all his grandfather's.  I had/have a hard time being around her because of this, and it has never gotten better. I can't imagine going to a childhood home and being surrounded with his things.  I can see why it is comforting but also difficult at his parents' home.

My dear friend who will be out 2 years in Sept with her loss of her husband has a completely different scenario than me. Her husband was the caregiver to his parents, and therefore, she was very close to them, too.   Since her husband's death, the SILs have taken over and not allowed her in some family care giving that she always did.  Her MIL would call her, but now my friend finds out things through the grapevine.  She is very hurt, feeling tossed out of the family, though she has the only children carrying on the family name.  Her kids don't understand either. She thinks her SILs are wanting her out of the family will, her children.  Sad, but awful things can happen.

Make your path how you need to do so and best of luck.

SoVerySad

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Re: In-Laws Relationship
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2016, 12:09:25 PM »
Thank you, Tybec, for your thoughtful reply. I went to my in-law's house last evening. They wanted to celebrate my son's and my birthdays coming up this week. My MIL got me the loveliest card I have ever seen. It just reinforced how much I love them. I need to find a way to manage my feelings, because I know I still really need them, just as they need me.

Thank you, again!
Without you, Baby, I'm not me.

MrsDan

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Re: In-Laws Relationship
« Reply #3 on: August 17, 2016, 11:35:20 AM »
I get this, because my IL's house was, and still is, very difficult for me. When we started dating he still lived at home, we went and hung out there on our first. We spent a lot of time there. I lost my virginity there, he proposed there, we had out rehearsal dinner there, I could go on and on. I tried to explain that avoiding the house was not personal; it was just so so painful. I'm not sure they really understood (although maybe MIL does now that she's widowed). But my SIL does, she's told me she understands because she can't stand being there, can't sleep when she's visiting, etc.

I told my ILs about N once we were in an exclusive relationship. When I told his parents, my MIL jumped up and hugged me. I sensed that it may have been a bit more difficult for my FIL, but he was very warm and friendly to N when they met. Since then, my MIL constantly asks about him. When she came to visit last month, we spent a lot of time together, and when he left she hugged him and called him honey. The only member of Dan's immediate family who N has not met is his sister, who has expressed happiness for me. I think, like you MIL, and everyone else could not stand to see me so sad. I also think there is a part of them that realizes that although it may be difficult for them to contemplate, it truly is good for DD to have someone like N in her life.


All this is to say that the one time I visited my IL's house and had N with me was the easiest time I've had being there since Dan died. I'm not saying it's easy, but easier. N calms me; he has this way of quelling the grief panic I feel at times. I remember one time I'd had to go back there, the first time, I think since N and I had started dating. I had to go from my IL's to my house (the one I'm renting out), and I'd stopped at the cemetery. I started bawling, that ugly panicked screaming cry. N called, and just hearing his voice helped calm me down. It wasn't anything e said; I didn't even mention the meltdown.

I've been truly astounded and how supportive everyone, including N and his family, as well as Dan's closest friends and family, have been. And how not weird it feels. It's possible they are putting up a front, or maybe partially. I'm sure it's not easy. It was really incredible at DD's birthday party. My MIL, BIL and his family, Dan's cousin, my mom, my sister, and N and his parents and step parents were all there. And everybody got along really well and it felt good. the only thing that felt weird was that it didn't feel more weird. I've had some rocky moments with Dan's parents as you know. Things have gotten better, but still I really didn't expect them to handle this as well as they have.

So while you may find you have trouble moving forward with your ties to the past, in my experience it's possible to integrate. Maybe you need a temporary reprieve from that space. Maybe find a nearby restaurant, and schedule regular lunches/dinners? I understand because it' s still not easy. I'm going to visit MIL twice in October, one time at her house and another time at her vacation trailer to help her close it up. N is planning to come with me when I stay at her house, and  that makes it much less daunting for me.
You are the Bear of my heart dear,
And nothing can take that away.

SoVerySad

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Re: In-Laws Relationship
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2016, 07:07:58 AM »
Thank you, MrsDan, for sharing your story. I also lost my virginity at my in-laws house, so it holds very strong emotions for me. I have no doubt that my in-laws would be welcoming to a new partner. This is a problem that may currently resolve itself, because I think I am not as ready as I thought to start dating someone else. But it is helpful for me to know what I'll face if I feel more ready in the future and ideas for managing it.
Without you, Baby, I'm not me.