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Newest Member: Crushedafter46years

Divorce/Separation :
Close with my stbx’s family

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 Misery (original poster new member #80348) posted at 8:58 PM on Thursday, October 27th, 2022

Hey everyone. It’s been a couple of months and wow have things moved fast! Divorce paperwork is getting started. My husband of 18 yes left me for the AP. We sold the house as neither of us can afford it on our own. All within a span of about 3 months.
Anyways as the holidays are coming up I’m trying to figure out what to do/how to celebrate things with his family. We are VERY close. Like his mother has updated their wills so I am treated like one of their children and will get a portion of their estate.
I talk to my STBX’s sister and mother almost daily. They are trying to support both of us separately in their own ways. We’re trying to figure out how to do family gatherings. The AP will not be allowed to come but even still. Just seeing my STBX will be absolutely heartbreaking and triggering for me. Obviously the simple answer is for me not to go. After all it’s "his" family as friends like to point out. But why should I lose what’s become my family because of what he’s done?! No I won’t let that happen. I’ll avoid him for the most part, go into another room etc and have asked that we don’t do the normal big sit down dinner but I just know this is going to be HARD. I also don’t like that it will be super weird and awkward for everyone there. Not to mention the aftermath of him leaving for his sisters while I stay at his moms (they are out of town for us). I’m gonna fall apart. I just know it. And wth do we do after this year. When he has a new partner or me. . . . Eventually. I just don’t know how to do this but I will not let him take it from me too. I will not sit alone in my tiny apartment on the holidays whiles he’s with the family.

Any suggestions? Anyone stay close with your ex husband/persons family?

posts: 13   ·   registered: May. 24th, 2022   ·   location: US
id 8762436
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Helena67 ( new member #80506) posted at 9:05 PM on Thursday, October 27th, 2022

For me it is the other way around. His sister is a big trigger for me. I stay no contact with her too. So, yes, he has taken that away from me too.

BS (me) 55 years; WS 54 years.
24 years married.
D day 6-2-2022.
Divorcing.

I’m healing and I’m growing

posts: 48   ·   registered: Aug. 10th, 2022   ·   location: The Netherlands
id 8762438
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BearlyBreathing ( member #55075) posted at 9:17 PM on Thursday, October 27th, 2022

This is tough. My cousins-in-laws "kept" me and dumped him, so I lucked out since they are local. The immediate family (siblings) live 3000 miles away and I was dropped — they still send XMAS card, but it’s all very superficial now and I was not invited to my nephew’s wedding.

D is brutal on us, but hard on everyone. Infidelity has a long reach.
And you must accept that things are going to change.
.
They may have him not come, but that feels like a stretch. If you are going to attend, you just have to put on the performance of your life. It will be hard, but it is possible. Have an early escape planned. Avoid alcohol. And think about if it is really what you want? Will you enjoy it at all? Or would you rather be with them on Friday for a sit down meal of leftovers where you can be relaxed and yourself?

Alternate Ideas: One of you is at T-Day dinner, the other comes for dessert. XMAS eve for one, XMAS day for the other… something like that

And understand that this will all evolve over time. Don’t worry about next year— we’re not there yet.

I’m so sorry- infidelity messes up a lot of things.

Me: BS 55 (49 on d-day)Him: WH. 64. D-Day 8/15/2016 LTA. Kinda liking my new life :-)

**horrible typist, lots of edits to correct. :-/ **

posts: 5103   ·   registered: Sep. 10th, 2016   ·   location: Northern CA
id 8762439
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grubs ( member #77165) posted at 9:27 PM on Thursday, October 27th, 2022

I would avoid attending together at all. Swap out Thanksgiving for black Friday. Or you show up in the morning and leave before he arrives.

Just seeing my STBX will be absolutely heartbreaking and triggering for me.

Because that's going to be even worse than you expect.

posts: 1367   ·   registered: Jan. 21st, 2021
id 8762443
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ButAnyway ( member #79085) posted at 9:43 PM on Thursday, October 27th, 2022

Personally, I’m of the opinion that when you D someone, you D their entire family too. Why tie yourself in knots with unnecessary drama.

posts: 151   ·   registered: Jul. 7th, 2021
id 8762446
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fareast ( Guide #61555) posted at 9:48 PM on Thursday, October 27th, 2022

My sister divorced her cheating WH in 1987 and she still spends time with her ex-in-laws at the holidays. They love her and she enjoys them as well. They always make it a point to invite her at the holidays, with the grandkids, at a different time than her EX. Actually, the Ex-hole moved away years ago and remarried. He doesn't show up much. So anything is possible as long as you feel up to it, and the inlaws reciprocate. Things may change moving forward.

You are still early on from your WH’s betrayal. You are still vulnerable to being terribly triggered if you go to the gathering. But you know these people well, and if you want to celebrate with them, then go. Hold your head high.

You mentioned in your earlier posts, that your WH totally changed from the man you knew for twenty years. You do not recognize him. If you decide to go to the celebration remember that the man you married died. No need to interact with this strange man. Dress for success looking your best and enjoy your in-laws. Good luck.

[This message edited by fareast at 4:54 PM, October 27th (Thursday)]

Never bother with things in your rearview mirror. Your best days are on the road in front of you.

posts: 3354   ·   registered: Nov. 24th, 2017
id 8762447
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Buster123 ( member #65551) posted at 10:42 PM on Friday, October 28th, 2022

And wth do we do after this year. When he has a new partner or me. . . . Eventually.

Frankly I think you should scale back your relationship with your soon to be ex-inlaws over time if you can't/won't do it quickly, I agree with ButAnyway that you should avoid this unnecessary drama, listen to your friends, that's his family, and as the saying goes "Blood is thicker than water", should you want to entertain a somewhat cordial relationship with them I think it's ok, but let's face it, the dynamic will never be the same as before, also as you mentioned what will happen when you find a new partner ? would they remain the same or would your new partner want to participate enter this awkward dynamic during the holidays ?.

Is it possible to keep this going long term ? yes (but not likely or typical) , will it be hard and awkward ? yes (already is), will he eventually tell his family he shouldn't sacrifice any time with them for you or have an awkward family reunion because of you ? yes (likely). Of course it's your call and your life, but as others point out, you're still recovering from this trauma, I suggest you try to detach from him and his family as much as possible, you could/should remain cordial to a certain extent but try to detach nonetheless and lower your expectations long term so you won't be shocked by a possible change in that dynamic where you would not be as welcome to join their gatherings as you are today.

posts: 2692   ·   registered: Jul. 22nd, 2018
id 8762708
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EllieKMAS ( member #68900) posted at 11:38 PM on Friday, October 28th, 2022

Honestly, I would work on creating a new tradition with your stbxinlaws that doesn't involve stbx at all if you're determined to keep contact with his fam. Maybe you do your celebration with them on Christmas Eve instead of Christmas Day. I would also set some rules ahead of time - number one being that you don't talk about stbx. Even better would be to build new holiday traditions for just you and your kids and keep your relationship with the inlaws to not on holidays (like inviting them over for a bbq or planning a trip to an amusement park with them and your kids).

I know this is a horrible side effect of divorce, but in most cases it's best to understand that you're also divorcing the family of your stbx. It hurts bad, but if push ultimately came to shove and lines were drawn, there's a high likelihood that they would be on his side of that regardless of what they say right this minute. It's not impossible to keep a relationship with your inlaws, but it is devilishly complicated and as much as you wouldn't want it to be that way, your stbx will always be a big ol elephant in the room.

"No, it's you mothafucka, here's a list of reasons why." – Iliza Schlesinger

"The love that you lost isn't worth what it cost and in time you'll be glad that it's gone." – Linkin Park

posts: 3629   ·   registered: Nov. 22nd, 2018   ·   location: CO
id 8762712
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