Sunday dinners


RubyJ

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My husband and I live about 10 minutes away from my parents. My husbands family is 8 hours away so we don't see them that often. My parents have all the family over for dinner every Sunday. My husband thinks it is too much and does not want to go every Sunday. Last year when we first moved to close we were having an issue with my grandparents inviting us over too often so we privately decided that we would only accept an invitation once a month. Though now that we have lived here almost a year the get togethers have become less frequent and in fact neither one of my grandparents have had any of my family over for dinner in almost 2 months. My family has always gotten together frequently so I think it is normal but my husband finds it weird and thinks it takes up too much time. My first priority is my husband and our son so I am willing to limit the number of visits. However, I don't want to cook Sunday dinner when there is a perfectly good meal only 10 minutes away. Is it wrong to tell my husband that if he doesn't want to go, we will stay home but he has to then cook dinner?

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What else could your husband possibly need to do on a Sunday? Family is the most important thing, and I don't think having dinner there a few times a month (especially when you're cooking the other 26 days!) is going to kill him. Your parents aren't going to be around forever, you should spend the valuable time you have with them.

Honestly, is it so hard for your husband to sacrifice 4 days a month for your family? How can spending time with your family be a waste of time?

But anyways, if he's going to insist that you can't afford the time then you should insist he be the one who makes dinner. I think you're absolutely right about that. It doesn't sound unreasonable at all.

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My husbands mother used to cook every Sunday also. We were all expected to be there. I can understand both points of view on this. Heres the thing, going to my mother-in laws became like a second job. It was a given that we were going to be there. Sometimes I just wanted to stay home and rest. I resented the fact that I had to be there like I didn't have an option. So, in my opinion you should let your husband choose when he wants to go. If he wants to go fine, if not let him skip it. He is more likely to go of his own free will when given an option.

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Marriage is about compromise.

My hubby (boyfriend, yes he's still my boyfriend) :D and I have been married for 32 years....almost 33 :)

I understand your husband's reservations. We spent too much time with my husband's family when our children were young. They were close family and EXPECTED that we attend everything. It was convenient but took time away from our young growing family and caused contention. I didn't want to fight with my husband. I could go on......... I won't.

If I had to do it over again, I would insist on more balance. Our family needed to come first. Instead his parents/siblings came first. It took a long time to get my husband to realize that his family was not his parents/siblings but his wife/children. He regrets not putting us first.

I would suggest that once a month is enough. You need to spend Sunday together as a family. You should also make the effort to see his family as often as possible. Eight hours away is difficult but a weekend every other month or so would be appropriate and appreciated by his parents.

Balance is important in everything including extended family relationships. If your husband feels there is a problem I would pay attention. He has his reasons. Try to find out what they are. A calm loving conversation will help him feel supported and give you the answers you need. You might find he has very good reasons.

applepansy

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Thanks! I think I'll try telling him he can stay home and I will go, cook dinner for us or we all go to my parents. I never made him go but I think he feels that on Sunday we should be together.

I don't think he thinks its a waste of time, just that we don't need to see them that often.

We do see his family quite often. We were there 2 weeks ago during spring break and will be headed back this week for a wedding. We also lived by them for the first 3 years of our marriage.

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My husband would too find this an issue if it was that frequent, and so would I if it the shoe wa son the other foot. Sometimes he wants to relax in his own home with his own things, and walk around half dressed if he wants to. He sometimes feels he cant relax as much if he's not at home. I really understand that and would never insist on a dinner every Sunday. Your family has to come first. Its hard though, as I would be happy to spend every Sunday with either of my parents, as I feel I can relax at either one of theirs as much as my own home. But I know my DH wouldnt, so we dont. We need our down time too.

In my opinion, 1-2 Sundays a month would be a good compromise, woth the option for him to stay at home if he so desires.

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Thanks! I think I'll try telling him he can stay home and I will go, cook dinner for us or we all go to my parents. I never made him go but I think he feels that on Sunday we should be together.

Ultimatums don't work well in building relationships. Talk to him.

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I would compromise with him and perhaps stay home every other Sunday. Perhaps he would like to spend a Sunday with just his immediate family and not the entire family. I most certainly could understand that. It's your family and not his. Think about if the role was reversed and your family lived the 8 hours away.

I see his side of it. But my opinion, telling him to just stay home and you'll go is only going to drive a wedge between the two of you. He is YOUR family first and foremost. Again both need to compromise.

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He is YOUR family first and foremost. Again both need to compromise.

Thank you Pam.

I'm seeing this more and more. One person in a "New" family still considers their parents/siblings as their primary family at the expense of their true primary family, which is spouse and children. (My sister is in the middle of a nasty divorce because of this issue. Her husband became abusive because she wouldn't comply to his family's interference in their marriage.)

Gen. 2: 24

Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.

This applies to both men and women. When we marry we need to leave and cleave. :) Its the only way to achieve true joy in marriage.

applepansy

Edited by applepansy
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I talked to my husband about this and we have decided that we will take it on a week by week basis. We agreed if we are not going, he will cook dinner. I told him that I cook every other night of the week so by having dinner at my parents it was a break for me that I didn't want to give up. He is not comfortable with me going without him since he wants to spend Sunday together(and I want to spend Sunday with him as well) so we won't be doing that.

It was good for us to talk, I think sometimes he forgets that being a SAHM is a 24/7 job. Yeah, he goes to work 5 days a week and so I do most of the household chores including dinner, but he gets a break on weekends and I don't.

When we were living close to his family, we did go frequently including almost every Sunday. I had no problem with that since I like getting together with family and feel like his family is mine as well now.

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Ruby, Thank you for the update. I'm glad you talked and have worked this out.

I picked up a new book last week. Its another by John Bytheway. The title is "Behind Every Good Man" Even after 32+ years of marriage it was good for me to read. The concepts he teaches apply to both men and women and in parent/child relationships.

Talking to each other is so important.

applepansy

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