My mom hates my boyfriend. Every time she sees him she barely speaks to him. When he’s not around I’m continually getting complaints from her. “What do you see in him?” and “Why don’t you date other guys?” or “He doesn’t treat you right. You need a guy who treats you right.” When I ask her what that means she shrugs and says, “He’s too selfish. When was the last time he did something for you?”
I tell her that he takes me out and we normally go to dinner where I want, but she still insists he’s rude.
The list goes on and on. She hates his tattoos, his hairstyle, and other stuff. I ask her what she likes about him and she doesn’t say anything. It’s gotten to the point that I won’t bring him in the house; he drops me off at the front door and I don’t invite him in. But my mom is still constantly asking me questions. What can I do to shut her up?
Thanks for your help.
Angry at Mom
Boy, can I relate. I dated a guy once that both my mom and my dad despised. They wouldn’t speak to him much either, and when they did their comments were guarded and a bit weird. I felt as if they’d rehearsed all of their questions beforehand, and the conversation felt more like some Army grilling over a normal family conversation. I hated bringing my boyfriend to the house.
I remember talking a lot outside in his car. He’d drop me off and I’d go inside without him. At his house things were different. I’d be invited in and felt comfortable with my boyfriend’s parents. They treated me with respect and I felt important in their eyes.
So you know, the last thing I want to do here is to throw wet mud at your mother. Even though its taken me years to see my own mother’s way of thinking, I finally see it and my feelings aren’t harsh toward her in this regard like they used to be. I see that she was only concerned for my happiness. She wanted the best for me. Having gone through a previous divorce, she was a bit more cautious than many other mothers out there still in their first marriage. She didn’t want me to divorce as she had, and felt like the guy I was dating would be taking me down a similar road.
I wish, then, that I’d spoken to my mother from my heart and allowed her to do the same. Perhaps right before my boyfriend was to show up was not the best time, neither was it the right time to talk right after he’d dropped me off. If I’d had a better relationship with my mother I would have suggested lunch. I would have really listened when she spoke about her feelings and I would have tried to not get angry, but to see her side of the situation.
Some of my own mother’s biggest complaints were that my boyfriend wouldn’t attend church, that his interests differed widely from mine and that the respect she wanted to see coming from him just wasn’t there. She asked me how he treated his mother. I said, “Not very good.” She said, “Expect the same from him when it comes to how he will ultimately treat you.”
It’s all about communication with our parents. Whether we agree with them or not, we need to listen to them and have an opportunity to share our own thoughts. Try it.