Straight Talk With Danice

I’ve made a terrible mistake in my marriage by letting my family offend my husband- A letter from Becky

Danice Akiyoshi

Danice Akiyoshi

BY DANICE AKIYOSHI, N.D.

Q: They are very critical of him about the slightest thing and I have never understood it.  We were invited for a cook out last weekend and he wouldn’t go with me and the kids.  He said he won’t be going around my family anymore because they are rude to him every time he sees them.  I know he’s right but I don’t want to get a huge family fight started over this.  I wish he would just go with us and ignore my dad and my brothers like he always did before.  What can I do to prevent a family war?

A: What you can do to prevent a family war is to address things as they are happening so you don’t get into a situation where things can escalate into being a full blown war.

If you’ve shown your family that it’s acceptable for them to be unkind to your husband then you are a terrible spouse.  You should have immediately intervened and requested that they treat him with decency even if they didn’t feel a deep connection.  Adults do not owe other adults friendship if they aren’t feeling that special connection, but they do owe each other basic decency and politeness in a family setting.  Your husband obviously attempted to deal with this by following your unhealthy lead and now he has decided to no longer play the game.  It looks to me like he has reached his limit.  Because you are the one who seems unhappy with his new choice, you will have to be the one to take the steps to remedy the situation.  In my opinion, you owe your husband an apology for allowing things to get to this point with your family.  I would also respect his wishes about not socializing with your family.  If your family ever starts to miss seeing your husband, then perhaps they would like to extend apologies as well and see how it goes.  Remember… People do not automatically owe their personal friendship to others, but polite decent behavior is required for relations to be smooth in a family setting.  Your family should have offered basic politeness simply because of his connection to you.  Good Luck