Sharing personal information brings people closer together. But how do you know when you’ve gone too far—or when someone else has ulterior motives?
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I just recently married into a new family but felt like I've been a part of this family for over three years, having been a part of their holiday and birthday celebrations over the years and been at the birth of his sister's baby. I felt pretty much already in the family and there had been pressure to marry my now husband. Even when we announced our engagement, my now mother-in-law was breathlessly happy, tears in her eyes, everything. But then after showing her some phone pics of her son in the suit we got for the wedding (not smiling because he hates having his picture taken), she choose to confront her son, asking if he was happy and telling this whole story about someone she knew who ignored pre-marriage doubts and later regretted it. He when he insisted that he was happy and that he wholeheartedly wanted to marry me, she suggested discussing further in person. I found out about it and at first rolled my eyes, but then after sitting with it, started feeling intense betrayal. I felt that I had a deep motherly bond already with her and was already integrated into the family and suddenly, a mere month before my wedding, she entertains doubt? In a later conversation addressing the matter and seeking an apology, she went even further saying she was concerned about my "privileged background", her son's career path... all concerns which were never concerns or even discussed throughout our relationship. It seemed to come completely out of nowhere. His mother and I after this exchanged a series of emails. In each email, I made sure to erase it of judgment or assumptions, but only of what I knew which was how her actions made me feel. Every email was calm, collected thoughts that I thought were sure to lead to a speedy resolution. But now, the wedding past us, which turned from a family celebration into an elopement, I feel that it's impossible to have healthy, successful communication with her. I would say... "You hurt me when you..." And she would respond almost nonsensically talking about how I was speaking in nouns? And going on about my grammar after I had, voice cracked, expressed my pain. This happened repeatedly, I would take out all the anger, the thorns and just sincerely speak to her and she would just change the subject or make it about her as though I had said nothing at all. How do you communicate with someone like this, who despite your attempts to say please stop, you're hurting me and your son, and then she just continues to hurt. At one point she left a voicemail to my now husband saying that she thought that I was beyond just a "bridezilla" but had "psychological issues" and that it shouldn't be ignored. She forwarded my emails to the family and said things, I don't know what, but they turned on me eventually. Telling me to "grow up." After speaking to my husband, I realize that his family doesn't really know how to communicate. They either say nothing and "suck it up" or they say something, regret it, and then come back with their tails between their legs. How do I set boundaries and communicate with my new family when it seems neither are possible? Any advice would be much appreciated as I truly do want to have a healthy, long-lasting relationship moving forward.
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