My husband and I have been married for a year now. Our wedding was no fairy tale as we had to get married in court because of his family being Greek and insisted on me getting married in the Orthodox Church. This would not be too much to ask only that in the 6 years we’ve been together neither my husband nor his parents have been or taken me to an orthodox church, or ever did his parents teach my husband any orthodox ways. My family and I however are active Protestants and it was through my family and I that my husband found God. It was his mother being purely spiteful and saying that if we didn’t get married in a Greek church we would not get married in ANY church. (not she or my husband even understand Greek by the way and all sermons are dine in the Greek language – kind of ridiculous hey) In all of this, even though he did not always agree with her, the father (my father in law) stuck with his wife and they held a united front (kind of what I expected from my then fiancé) Anyway the lady never liked me because of my heritage and was very bitter and miserable because she had a very tough childhood. Throughout all the drama it never felt to me that my husband had “my back” and always submitted to whatever his parents had to say because they have a family business and he was financially dependent on them. We moved away in the end because he couldn’t see eye to eye with his dad in business anymore and gotten married in the meantime without his parents blessing (we are both in our late twenties – he’s closer to thirty). It’s been a year since then and recently my husband mother passed away suddenly. We immediately packed our life up and came to live with and support my father in law. I struggled a lot emotionally with all of this because i still feel a lot of bitterness toward his parents because of what happened but I did it anyway in support of my husband. It’s been 3 months now and we are still living with his dad. I am still in the process of getting over everything that’s happened so it is very difficult to see and interact with his father every day. I do it though. I cook every night for the old man and run the household. I have talked to my husband about how I feel and he understands but it still feels to me like he disregards it and rather does anything to still win his dad’s approval e.g. he does not want to upset his dad by talking about us urgently needing to move out because it is affecting our relationship. I get that, but I am going insane knowing that we are still going to live here for the next three months until our house becomes available (my husband is adamant about moving back into our old house that we used to live in when we lived in this town before). I feel that when it comes to our relationship and his parents are involved I always pull on the short end. Am i unreasonable for feeling the way I feel? What should I do? I feel like after a day’s work and all that’s been going on, I really need a place of my own and privacy to come home to at night. I have put up with all of this for my husband’s sake and to try and make things easier for him and his dad, because they have suffered with their mom and wife’s death, but it has been three months now and our life must go on. I am really insecure about our future if this is how things are going to be when it comes to him having to look after my needs. I really don’t feel so safe anymore. Am I crazy?
It sounds like you have been experiencing a fair share of challenge and frustrations within your relationship. Have you voiced your concerns with your husband? Does he realize that you do not feel safe? These are important questions to bring up within the relationship. In addition, determining exactly what you and your husband expect from a marriage and from your relationship with each other. What are your needs and expectations from each other? How can they be met? Are negotiations required? Gaining some clarification with these questions can help both of you determine how your relationship will be and what the future will look like as well. In couples therapy, a therapist can provide each person of the couple system with a safe place to voice their concerns of the relationship. In doing so, each of you will have the opportunity to explain with a third, neutral party involved to provide guidance. I would suggest finding a therapist in your community to support you and your husband through this process.