My ex-husband and I have a good working relationship regarding our kids’ care.
The problem is my family - they invite him to everything. They often invite him but not me and my significant other to events.
It’s great that he’s friends with them, but I believe they cannot let go of the past.
How long is it normal to hang out with your ex-son-in-law?
- Hanging On?
Your problem has a positive side, since it means your children don’t suffer the more common post-divorce family divisions and conflicts.
For that reason alone, it’s worth not challenging the friendship, which will likely ease as your ex gets involved with a new partner and her family.
But there’s no reason for you and your boyfriend to be left out, unless one or both of you have acted uncomfortably when your ex is around.
Find out ahead who’s invited to family events, and then speak up about how it’s affecting you, without being judgmental.
Instead of “hanging on,” they may like the guy and be trying to keep a connection for the kids’ sake, too.
After five years of a good marriage, we’ve been arguing because my wife desperately wants to have a baby.
I’d love to have a baby; we’ve been trying for 15 months, but with no success. I realize that sometimes these things take a while.
However, she’s increasingly frustrated and taking out her anger on me.
I’m trying to be supportive, but getting verbally abused regularly.
Worse, recently all of our friends are expecting. As soon as anyone announces a pregnancy, my wife wants nothing to do with them. She says this is normal behaviour for women trying to conceive.
I hate to lose touch with our good friends this way.
I’m also getting concerned - if we do have a child - about my wife's lack of patience. She’s great in many ways, but her constantly berating me is taking a toll.
- Worn Down
Difficulty trying to conceive often puts women through an emotional roller-coaster, but she should know – or needs help understanding - that discord between husband and wife is counter-productive to the process.
You need to seek professional help together from doctors and counsellors.
Her family doctor can tell you both when it’s time to see a fertility expert, and/or have specific medical tests done.
A marital therapist will help you both avoid turning on each other, and work at keeping stress at a minimum, since it can interfere with conception.
Wish your friends well, and you be the one to call occasionally; but focus on your marriage for now.
Hopefully, as your wife starts to relax, and either conceives or makes other decisions, she’ll want a network of caring friends again and will reach out to them.
We have a family feud between warring aunts, and it makes all of our special events a nightmare of decisions.
Now, my daughter’s getting married and if I invite one aunt, the other won’t come, yet I’m not fighting with either of them.
- In the Middle
Take yourself out of the middle, by walking a straight line on the high road. This is the time for you to celebrate with family and friends, not to choose sides.
Invite both aunts, don’t listen to arguments otherwise; assure any critics that these opponents will be seated far from each other.
The two women are adults and can attend or not, that’s their choice.
Tip of the day:
Your family’s friendship with your “ex” sometimes calls for negotiations to assure everyone’s comfort.