Dear Amy: I started dating my husband back in 2012. We’ve been married now for six years.
We have both been married in the past and have adult children. He and his ex were married for 13 years. They have two boys that I have helped to raise. They are now adults.
My husband’s ex-wife is a wonderful person, she truly is. She is very close with my mother-in-law and remains in her life, which is fine.
My problem is that I have just now started to meet the “family” and I still don’t know all of them.
Whenever there is a family function on his side, my husband’s ex is always invited. I feel like no one will ever know me because she is still always there at all the functions.
We have a graduation party to go to and she is also invited to that.
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I don’t have a problem with her personally, but would like to experience family things with just that … family.
Am I being too much?
The Now Wife
Dear Wife: Your husband’s ex has remained very close with his family — and this could be a nice result for families that can manage it. Most can’t.
But think of it this way: If she were a sister-in-law or close family friend who was present at every family gathering, her presence wouldn’t prevent you from getting to know everyone any more than any other individual’s presence would.
Basically, I’m suggesting that you ignore her status as your husband’s long-ago ex, and concentrate on your own best behavior.
Be cool, be calm, ask good questions, and let your in-laws see your sparkle.
You will further cement these relationships by hosting some of your in-laws at your own home in smaller groups (it is not necessary to invite your husband’s ex). Little by little, absent these larger gatherings, you would build experiences with them individually.
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