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Old 05-30-2007, 11:56 AM   #1
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He's divorced, my parents won't understand

I am dating a divorced man. He got divorced over 3 years ago and he and his ex have no communication. It wasn't an ugly divorce or anything. They just got married too young (right after college) and it didn't work out. In my Indian culture, unfortunately being divorced comes with a stigma. I don't believe it, but my parents do. I know they do. I have heard their reactions to me telling them that so-and-so is getting a divorce. My sister-in-law's parents are divorced and my mom was not happy about it. My brother isn't marrying her parents, he's marrying her and they still had an issue with it!

I don't know how to tell them. I know that I HAVE to because you need to disclose everything on the marriage license. I don't NEED their approval, but I am relatively close with them and really want them to accept my boyfriend. I know I don't have to tell them unless me and my BF get engaged, but I want to start planning now how to tell them.

Anyone go through something similar to this?

 
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Old 05-30-2007, 12:07 PM   #2
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

I know how you feel. My Mother who is not Native American married a Native American and some of her family wouldn't speak to her for years. She didn't want her kids to be in touch with their Native American Heritage. Anyway I married someone who is NAtive American and very much into it. I joined in and my Mother despises it. She hates my M.I.L. without even getting to know her. I didn't give in so she caused a family fight and now my Mother won't speak to me. I don't need their approval and I made my choice but I still was hoping they would come around! So I say do what you think is right for you but be prepared that they might not speak to you. Good luck!

 
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Old 05-30-2007, 12:13 PM   #3
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

I don't think they would not speak to me - I really believe that. The worst case scenario would be that my parents don't approve and don't like my boyfriend only because he's divorced, and just pretend that everything is ok in public. I plan on living 30-45 minutes away from my parents' home so that means I plan on seeing them every so often. And I want my mom to really help me when I have children. I just want my parents in my life for real, not for superficial pleasantries.

 
Old 05-30-2007, 12:16 PM   #4
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

I know you have to disclose everything on your marriage lisence, but are your parents going to see it? I don't think lying to your parents about it is the best idea, but if they are going to have such an issue with something about his past that frankly is none of their business then why tell them?

However, if you want to be honest with your parents (which is ALWAYS the best policy) then you should tell them exactly that. He was married young and it didn't work out so they got a divorce. They may not like it, but like I said it really is none of their business. They will either get over it or they won't. I understand it is a stigma in their culture but it's not in his. That is when they need to consider cultural differences that they may not agree with. Just assure them that they raised an intelligent daughter capable of making wise and educated decisions for herself. If he is the man for you then they should trust your judgement on him and not their feelings on divorce. I know it's easier said then done, but I'm sure you will find a way to get it across to your parents.

 
Old 05-30-2007, 12:20 PM   #5
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

I would let them get to know him, get to like who he is as a person.. then down the road, when there is a ring on your finger and wedding plans being made, consider telling them. Honestly, its none of their business really. They don't need to know.. they have no right to know. It's his life and his business.

But since I understand that you are close with them, and wouldn't feel comfortable keeping something from them... you need to wait until they've get to know and like who he is. Once (if) they like him just for him, and see that you're happy with him.. hopefully it will make it harder for them to judge him on one bad judgement call he made years ago.

And if not, then your parents need to look at the bigger picture.. he makes you happy, he cares about you, he treats you right, he loves you and you love him. Those are the things that matter. It's better to be divorced than it is to live miserably with someone.

 
Old 05-30-2007, 12:25 PM   #6
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

Hi Pa-

I wouldn't stress about feeling obligated to tell them everything. He's not "a divorced guy," he's a guy that has great qualities, and that's all your parents have to know. I'm sure your parents have things between them they don't share with you, and as an adult it's only practical that you would prefer to keep some things personal.

 
Old 05-30-2007, 12:25 PM   #7
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

Thanks you guys for the words of wisdom!

I think that they may find out somehow if I don't tell them and that is worse, I feel. Suppose one of his relatives blurts something out or his grandmother says something and my parents overhear. That is much worse than me coming clean first.

I think waiting until they get to know him is a good plan. I'm just really scared! I KNOW their feelings on this subject because everytime it comes up (in terms of someone else) my parents always feel the need to say something negative and they act as if the person's life is over... as if accepting someone who is divorced is just not an option!

My boyfriend is very smart, has a great job and I know my parents love that stuff. I just hope they can eventually get over his past, because I have!

Last edited by pa43; 05-30-2007 at 12:26 PM.

 
Old 05-30-2007, 03:59 PM   #8
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

They really don't even need to know. They don't have to see your marriage license application. It doesn't say that he was married before on the marriage license itself.

 
Old 05-30-2007, 06:30 PM   #9
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

Quote:
Originally Posted by pa43 View Post
My boyfriend is very smart, has a great job and I know my parents love that stuff. I just hope they can eventually get over his past, because I have!
Your folks will mutter about his divorce, they will be negative for a while, so be it. If he is the wonderful person you see him to be, he will win them over. I have seen stronger prejudices than this melt away under the light of love and familiarity. The worst case scenario is that they won't come round all the way til the first child is born...then just watch them warm up!!! Best of luck, Sera

 
Old 05-31-2007, 03:57 PM   #10
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

My parents may not need to see the marriage license but I can't control what his family says. They may say something not realizing my family doesn't know and how would they feel knowing that I'm keeping a part of him a secret? I can't control their words. I'd rather my parents find out from me than from another source... but I'm scared of their reaction.

Last edited by pa43; 05-31-2007 at 03:58 PM.

 
Old 06-01-2007, 09:34 AM   #11
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

May be you projecting. It is hard to believe that somebody this day will hold person accountable for something like that. He doesn't have kids with this woman. He married young by mistake. Why don't you explain it to your parents. People are doing mistakes left and right.

 
Old 06-01-2007, 01:02 PM   #12
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

It's a difference in culture. Divorce and step families are fairly common in the US, but not in India.

 
Old 06-01-2007, 01:30 PM   #13
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

Quote:
Originally Posted by pa43 View Post
It's a difference in culture. Divorce and step families are fairly common in the US, but not in India.
You are in US now and they have to accept cultural differences. I am an immigrant family myself, my parents are also often don't understand or accept cultural differences.

 
Old 06-01-2007, 02:07 PM   #14
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

I agree they don't accept the new culture, which is my issue!!

It's easier said than done when it comes to parents!

 
Old 06-01-2007, 02:23 PM   #15
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Re: He's divorced, my parents won't understand

Quote:
Originally Posted by pa43 View Post
I agree they don't accept the new culture, which is my issue!!

It's easier said than done when it comes to parents!
I have lot of problems when it comes to my parents as well. It also depends on personality. I myself have use to listen to the parents and do what they want. My brother always does what he wants regardless if they aproves or disaproves. For example, he married different race and religion girl. Most of our relatives were against it.

 
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