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Ask Rev.Dr. August Abbott Your Own Question
Rev.Dr. August Abbott
Rev.Dr. August Abbott, Clergy
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 7627
Experience:  Ordained minister: Counselor (spiritual/life)
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My boyfriend (45 yrs old) just met my sister for first time.

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My boyfriend (45 yrs old) just met my sister (43) for first time. I am the 'baby' (40) of the family, youngest of 5 girls. Upon introduction, he said to her "So you are the youngest one in the family? Then my girlfriend? I could see as you two were standing there that she is older and you younger." Naturally, my sister looked at him in confusion and said "No, she is the youngest in family, then me. Don't you know that yet?" (We have been dating for 1 year. He has met everyone else in my family.) Later than evening, my sister asked me "Does he like to provoke you?" I was perplexed with his comment, confused and hurt. My sister is quite attractive and gets lots of attention from men. She does look younger than her age (thanks to botox, etc). Long story short, I am annoyed with my boyfriend! After dropping my sister off, he brought up the subject saying "I know you will bring it up so I am going to explain that I knew you were youngest. But, women always focus on age and all seem to want to be youngest in age. So I was creating a fun exchange between you two and creating levity to the introduction. I wanted your sister to feel good. I know sisters can be really competitive." (But he was wrong about my bringing up comment, I had dismissed it was not planning to bring it up.) And he further explained "I also tell mother and daughters I am introduced to 'Are you two sisters or mother and daughter?" I find those comments 'smarmy' and insincere. But, perhaps he meant it.... So, I am hurt. Later he said he did not want to cause discord between my sister and me. Well, I feel like he insulted me and my sister is not pleased either. There is a bit of awkwardness between my sister and I now. What gives?? MEN?!! How do I proceed or view his comment? (PS My bf is forgettful and may truly have forgotten who was older. Making his comments all the more inappropriate.)
-- You are apparently dating a fellow who comes from a family of women who were sensitive about their ages and/or men in the family who (innocent ignorance) believed they knew how to make their ladies happy by being, as you correctly describe, "smarmy".

How shallow they must think the women in their lives are. How interesting it would be to see their reaction if you were to pull the same behavior. Upon meeting your beau's brother, father, uncle, high school buddy, etc., comment on how much younger they look than your bf

Let this one incident go. Tell him that he get's this "one free pass" on being a dolt who doesn't appreciate that you (and your sister) are far more than 'looks' and have more depth to yourselves than being giggly girls flattered by obvious and insincere comments like he made.

--- And then, be true to your word and let it go. Never to be spoken of again. Unless he makes the huge mistake of doing something similar in the future - at which time you are free to remind him that his 'one pass' is now revoked and you can proceed to let him have it.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok very good. One pass. And if he does do something so stupid again? "Let him have it" means?? Not sure, 20 lashings? (just kidding)
- Oh there are so many better ways to 'let him have it'. The ultimate is to marry him Wink
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Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I thought this issue was over with but it appears my sister is sharing this info with our siblings and other family members. (that upon meeting my bf, he thought she was younger than me) She is quite vain, concerned with aging and I feel she enjoyed his comment greatly. She has said to me since then that perhaps he was only being truthful, forgot I was younger and he tells too much of what he is thinking. (in other words, my sister does NOT think my bf was joking or being smarmy.) Now I am angry with both of them. Especially my sister and I think she has crossed the line with this whole thing. I am further embarrased by her sharing the info with others. I am ready to dump them both. Help! What to do now??!
-- Lean into it. In the boxing ring when a boxer sees a powerful blow being thrown and it's too late to duck, they'll lean into it. As crazy as it sounds there's a reason: The momentum is shortened and thus the energy built up and delivered is lessened.

--- In real life cases like this one, head off the comments by making them first.

By seeming to be hurt, upset or in any way effected by bf's comment, you're adding to the momentum and thus, giving more power to it.

If and when someone mentions it, say something to the effect of "Yes, 'Sue' must often be mistaken for my younger sister. She got the good genes. She's smarter too, don't you think? And way more talented" - then expound on her ability to use her cell phone so much better than you can, her keen eye for good tv shows and how somehow her favorite color, even though it's the majority of the world's favorite color, just seems more vivid when it's hers.

---- Actually you can have a lot of fun with this. By leaning into it you can make others want to avoid the subject altogether rather than hear you talk on and on about 'Sue's' superior looks, remarkable talents (that aren't) and so on.

--- You've heard the expression 'fight fire with fire' ? The way it's done is when a forest fire is raging, firemen set another fire, one that THEY control, around the perimeter. By burning the fuel the undesired wild fire would need to continue to spread, it reaches that 'fire line' and stops. Burns itself out. Has nowhere to go.

This is what you'll be doing by leaning into it. You'll have the control and you'll be taking away the fuel they need to keep it going. It'll then just burn itself out