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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5808
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Please help, I just got engaged a week ago and my future mother in law told my fiancee th

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Please help, I just got engaged a week ago and my future mother in law told my fiancee that he has to choose between me or her? His mother acted so bad at our engagement brunch yesterday. She ignored my whole family and left in a triffle? She is super jealous of me? What do I do?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 6 years ago.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.


I am sorry this is happening to you. It is difficult to deal with someone who is trying to make your happy time difficult.


There are some ways you can handle this.


One, sit down with your finace and talk about options in how to deal with your future mother in law's behavior. Your finace knows her best and give good ideas on how to handle the situation.


Your fiance should talk with his mother about her behavior. You should stay out of it. If you try to deal with her, it will only make you a more attractive target for her and he will appear blameless.


Your future mother in law may have several reason for her behavior. She could be jealous, or sees you as replacing her in her son's life, or she is so close to her son that she feels he is being lost to her. Whatever the reasons, she cannot be allowed to interfere with your engagement, marriage or the raising of any children you may have. You are the wife and therefore the most important person to your husband. Your mother in law is not.


Whenever your mother in law does something negative, try to smile and let it go. It reflects badly on her and leaves you blameless. This goes for discussing her with others as well. Whatever you do, do not say anything negative about her. If someone brings her behavior up to you, simply respond neutrally, saying that you don't know what is going on, or something to that effect.


Make sure you and your fiance are discussing this on a regular basis and that he is supporting you. If this is a problem, seek out counseling. Although he may feel pulled and confused by her behavior, he needs to put you first.


There is a book that may help you called The Daughter-In-Law's Survival Guide: Everything you need to know about relating to your mother-in-law (Women Talk About) by Eden Unger Bowditch and Aviva Samet Psy.D. You can find it on or your local library may have it available.


I hope this helped you,


Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Hi Kate,


I just found out later last night after I had already written my question, that actually she contacted my fiance earlier in the morning (with 10-15 text messages and a half hour long conversation on the phone with him) and told him that he should call off the engagement!

Apparently, she said very mean-spirited things against me and my whole family. He doesn't want to tell me what she said. He also said that she is planting seeds of doubt into him, but that his feelings towards me will never change.


So it is actually worse than I thought......


Please advise.





Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 6 years ago.

This should not change anything between you and your finace. Your finace should stand behind you 100%, especially given how his mother is acting. The fact that he is not shocked or upset by her behavior is a little worrisome.


If your finace is having doubts based on what his mother is saying, then you can do two things. One, seek counseling together. It can be with a therapist or pastor at your church, either one is fine.


Two, call off the engagement. If your fiance is willing to allow his mother to interfere and change his mind, he may have mother/son issues with his mother. This could cause your marriage to be extremely difficult, since he may chose his mother over you.





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