Dear Dr Archer,
I'm from Philly and a widow for two years. I have two children, but they're grown, married and live their own lives. I have had a live-in partner for almost a year, and my problem is that it seems his family doesn't like me. We've been arguing about this almost all the time. All I want him to do is to help me have his family accept me.
It hurts very much that every time there's an occasion he goes to a family function he can't take me with him. It's always this way, and he does nothing about it, which makes me feel even worse. I ask him all the time if he wants me in his life, and he always says yes, but he never does anything about this problem.
How do I make him love me the way I love him? It would feel so much better if his family would accept me. He has two sisters and a brother that I don't even know.
For the past two weeks he has been out of town for his brother's wedding. I was left behind and I am very sad because of the situation. Thank you so much for your attention, Dr. Archer. More power and God bless you!
He’s been gone for two weeks to his brothers wedding!? And you were not invited after a year of living together!? Enough!
You're right; this is no way to treat someone you love. I don’t care if you and his family don’t get along, the only way to make that happen is to be together and work on it. He is clearly showing that you are not very important in his life. I believe this is his doing, not his family.
You say he can't take you with him. I say he won't take you with him, for one reason or another. You will continue arguing about this and nothing will ever come of it if you keep accepting this behavior. This is a huge issue if the two of you are arguing about it almost all the time, so now something needs to give.
My advice: Ultimatum time. This is rarely a good idea, but he needs a fire lit under him and he has to make a decision. Have a talk with him when he returns and tell him no more.
If he takes a trip to see his family, you want to go so you can get to know them. If he has a problem with it, then find someone new who would love to take you to meet their family. Stop letting him have it only his way. He won’t change if you allow this to continue, so do it now.
Do not let this guy continue to take advantage of your good nature. If he refuses to start taking you on his arm, then you have your answer. It will be time to move on to find someone who deserves your love and support. Good luck.