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Aunty Bella: Miss His Parents Don’t Approve of Me

BellaNaija.com

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Aunty Bella is our agony aunt column on BellaNaija. We launched this column in the early days of BN and periodically feature issues sent in by BN readers. We hope the BN family can offer insightful advice as well.

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Hi,

Hopefully you all can give me some sound advice on my current issue. My boyfriend and I have been dating for over a year (he’s 27, I’m 28). We were set up by his uncle and my aunt because they thought that we’d be great for one another due to similar careers in healthcare. We’ve had problems like most couples. We want to spend the rest of our lives together, but we are not racing to the altar tomorrow. I have no fairytales about him being “the one” or that our love story will be made of milk and honey. I consider myself to be pretty realistic. We are open and honest with each other, respect one another, and genuinely want what’s best for each other. He’s not just my boyfriend, he’s also a really good friend. The problem is that from the very beginning of our relationship his parents have been STRONGLY against the idea of me being with their son. Even after more than a year of having a positive influence in his life (his words), they still want him to seek out someone else. Their reasons include:
1. My parents never married and I was raised by my single mother
2. My mother has children by different men
3. I’m one year older than their son (seriously ONE year!!! WTH)
4. I don’t speak Igbo (Dad’s igbo, mom’s American)

I have come around to understanding their concern about their future daughter-in-law (my bf is the only son) and grandchildren. No one understands the importance of raising kids in a nurturing environment more than I do. Although I get where they are coming, I can’t help but feel like this is a personal attack. I am the first to admit that my upbringing could have been a lot better and that I am still dealing with things from my childhood that effect the way I see the world. But, when you take a holistic view of my life and my accomplishments, I know for certain that ANY man would be very lucky to be with me. The fact that I went to university and am now finishing my Master’s degree at an ivy league university speak highly to my resilience and the fact that I have my priorities straight. I have lived and worked in three different countries and I am bilingual. I have worked very hard not to repeat the mistakes of my parents and to set a good example for my younger family members and future children (God willing). The bf’s parents are unwilling to take any of this into account. It’s almost as if the things that were outside of my control matter more that any accomplishments that I’ve made. They are unwilling to meet with me. My boyfriend recently tried to introduce us, but his mother shot down the idea. It hurt but I tried to understand it by taking Naija culture into account. But we recently had an argument because he lied to his parents on Christmas by telling them that he was at home alone when he was really spending the holiday with my family. He said that he didn’t want to argue with his parents on Christmas. I felt that he was being a coward, but I let it go.

I try to see things from his point of view. He’s a parent pleaser and I am sure that he is stuck between a rock and a hard place, but this is also very hurtful and hard on me. he assures me that he is fighting for me and that he wants to stand by me no matter what. Most days I believe him but, sometimes when I think about just how close he is to his family and how much influence they have over his ENTIRE life, it makes me wonder if he can truly withstand the pressure. Another issue is that if we do end up together I am afraid that I’ll have some lingering resentment toward them. I’m really trying to be understanding and to see things objectively, but it is difficult. They are essentially being judgmental without ever having met me. I’ve met and spent time with his sisters and some of his aunts, uncles and cousins. I’m trying to build relationships with them all, so that they can support my boyfriend and I. his uncles absolutely love me and want me to be with their nephew.

This is really putting a strain on my relationship. I try not to think too much about it because my bf and I are still building a strong foundation for our relationship, but it worries me. I want to be with him, but I don’t know how much longer I can wait for his parents “to grow to accept” me. I’ve been open with my bf and he knows exactly how I feel, but I don’t really think he understands the depths of my hurt/pain. He asks me to be patient.

I’m not sure what to do. I don’t want to break up with him. I also don’t want to have to jump through hoops to prove that I am worthy of their son. Ok BNers, advise me biko (see, I have some igbo words in my vocab! 😉

100 Comments

  1. ramat

    January 1, 2016 at 2:14 pm

    I absolutely love the fact that you know who you are, where you’re from and where you’re headed. That confidence and sense of self will help alot. From what you’ve said I’m also sure your bf loves you. Since you said it yourself that you’re not rushing to the altar anytime soon, listen to him. Give it time. His parents won’t have a choice but to notice what a positive influence you’ve been in his life, except they don’t really love him. Good luck dear.

  2. dar

    January 1, 2016 at 2:16 pm

    Like He said “be patient” and see how 2016 goes.

  3. Great Lady

    January 1, 2016 at 2:34 pm

    My dear in African culture you marry not just the man but his entire family. It’ll be catastrophic marrying into a family that you weren’t accepted. Unfortunately, your bf is still tied to his parents apron, so most likely than not he’ll do anything to please them, which definitely you won’t like. That being said, still be patient. Pray seriously and get God’s opinion about your relationship. His parents disapproval could be a sign that you shouldn’t marry him.

    • Gerry

      January 2, 2016 at 12:00 pm

      My husband’s mother and sisters did not accept me at the time of us dating and the bros was weak men. For over a year he lied to them that we had broken up but every other day he was at my place. I mean he was spending about 2 to 3 nights at my place. Then when he moved to his own place I was practically living with him. We never attended any family event together. Thinking about it now I don’t know what I was thinking sha. Anyway, my mil went to a “prophet” who told her we were still seeing and sleeping with each other lol. Then I get a call from her one faithful day and I was excited that she was finally going to accept me, I told the Mr and he said I shouldn’t go hian I was like why should I disobey your mother, he didn’t say anything. Na so I carry my thin legs go, chai till today I regret it. She gave me correct lashing and told me to leave her son alone, I cried like I lost a loved one. I called bros and told him and he was like but he told me not to go. Cut a long story bros spoke to some family members who in return spoke to his mother and she eventually accepted. When we got married I avoided his family and wouldn’t attend any event organised by them. I found it difficult to forgive and it caused some problems between us. But I am trying to let go of the hurt and pain and as much as we are not close we all have a decent relationship. So if you love him fight for that love, I did and I am happy today. All the best

  4. Neharra

    January 1, 2016 at 2:37 pm

    Dear Lady,
    Happy new year!lol
    In several aspects of life if the shoe doesn’t fit, it just doesn’t fit! I like to call it the Cinderella effect. I read in your last paragraph that you don’t want to break up with him, but I’m going to give you a reality check and tell you that you are on a sinking ship. When parents (esp both parents) don’t approve of you, especially in a close knit family, you can never win. I don’t care how in love you and your boyfriend are. He might love you an be willing to fight for you, but one day he will surely cave in and go.
    Lets just say he decides to forsake is family and marry you. Marriage on its own is a very hard journey to be on. When you go through it with unsupportive family it makes it even harder. When you are having marital problems your in laws should be like parents who put you together and try to mend it. Do you really think they will do that if you get married?

    • Neharra

      January 1, 2016 at 2:40 pm

      I posted the comment before finishing, but in the end you are fighting a battle you can’t win. You sound like a fantastic girl and I’m sure the right family will adore you. You wouldn’t have to struggle. But this one right here is not for you. In a serious adult relationship headed to wards marraige it’s not just about the love you have for each other. The family plays a big role because you are marrying into it. The sooner you can be realistic with yourself, the better.
      Best of luck.

    • Maguim

      January 3, 2016 at 2:31 pm

      Hum….. A priest once said that :” even some of the marriages that got parents/family approval ended up in divorce”…….. Family approval is great, but please we should not act like it “does” or guarantee the success of a marriage…..

  5. Single @ 28 and worried.

    January 1, 2016 at 2:48 pm

    I’m sorry this is not quite related but please permit me to take this off my chest. I was dating this dude for about 4 months albeit most of it was long distance. I was in Uk and he was here in Nigeria. Shortly before I got back he was posted to the South East as he works for one of the government parastatals. To be frank communication hasn’t quite been excellent as he is not even the chatting and gisting type thereby making things a bit more cumbersome.
    This holiday, my siblings did not return home and I was the only one left with my parents, thus there was a lot of work to do and loads of visitors and I had to assist my mum.

    He was allowed only two days back to Lagos, however I was unable to see him. I believe he was angry, however I have explained and pleaded with him that it wasn’t my making and I am going to make up for not being able to see him. To cut the long story short, he called it quits. He did not even send me a new year message. I have sent him messages apologizing and pleading for us to start on a clean slate, but the dude insists that he is done. ‘I’m 28, he is 30.

    I think its the thought of being single at 28 that really frightens me. Even if we try to start afresh, to be honest i sincerely doubt if anything will change. Do I plead with him one more time, get his brother to talk to him on my behalf or just move on??

    • Uju

      January 1, 2016 at 3:37 pm

      Just move on is the truth my dear. It hurts like hell but why hasn’t he come around after all the begging? It’s telling. Maybe he had already moved on and was looking for an opportunity as well. You need to get yourself together. You have begged enough. Honestly relationships are hard but as long as there’s life and God, there’s hope. I had a catastrophic relationship at 27 and met my current husband at 28 so there’s hope. Move on and do so with dignity. God bless

    • dharmmy

      January 7, 2016 at 2:13 pm

      Your current husband… lol

    • koins

      January 1, 2016 at 3:39 pm

      My dear, move one. Unforgiveness is not something to joke with. If you honestly believe that you did what you did from a good place and he doesn’t understand that or forgive you, then move on. I think you should have made out time to see him sha. You should also consider the fact that he might have been trying to break up with you for a while and just didn’t know how to go about it

    • Ada Nnewi

      January 1, 2016 at 3:43 pm

      Move on….

    • Miss Bonnie

      January 1, 2016 at 3:51 pm

      Baby girl !! Move on . The guy looked for a silly reason to break up with you . You can do much better * hugs*

    • beauty

      January 1, 2016 at 3:52 pm

      Please give him time off. You have already reached out and he isn’t responding. Don’t put yourself in a restless state. It’s a new year and he clearly isn’t meant to be part of it! Wear your confidence coat and move, love will find you!

    • Connie

      January 1, 2016 at 4:02 pm

      Happy new year. At the end of the day the decision to purse him some more or move on is ultimately yours. But here is my take on this. The suituation you presented does not justify him breaking up with you like that. HE IS JUST NOT IN TO YOU. If he was, he would be more understanding and willing to fight for you and your relationship. This is a new year. God has shut this door. Give him a chance to open another door for you. Remember God will not send you a man that will take away your peace, or joy. Pray fervently that he will bring you his own chosen life partner for your this year. And if you haven’t started already start praying for your husband every day as you would do for yourself. That you are 28 doesn’t mean you should be in a relationship with the wrong person just because you want to be married before 30. It’s better to meet the love of your life at 29/30 and be peacefully and happily married than to endure a problematic and not so understanding man. Good luck and may God guide you in the way you should go. Amen.

    • o

      January 1, 2016 at 4:05 pm

      It seems to me that the guy just needed an excuse to call it quits and grabbed the first flimsy one he got. So why on earth will you be begging him? Not being able to see him doesn’t mean he should cut it off! So if he has, you better move on. It’s hard but you have to make up your mind.

    • nene

      January 1, 2016 at 4:57 pm

      abeg leave him. any boyfriend who can’t forgive will be nightmare when u marry him. he was looking for a reason to break up with u, plain truth.

    • Truth

      January 1, 2016 at 6:10 pm

      My dear his reason for breaking up with you is just silly. He can be upset but breaking up with you for such a reason doesn’t make sense. Even if he accepts d pleading,dis is going to be his pattern. Do you want a man that will continuously emotionally abuse you? A man that truly wants you and wants to settle down with you would never let you go, just like dat. 4mths dats supposed to be honey moon stage. I think dude has found someone else. I dated smone similar last yr, any little argument we had, he won’t speak to me, won’t pick up calls, answer bb, 2wks, even 1mth at a point. My dear when I saw d rltshp was shaky, I started talking to another guy, by d time he did his 1mth madness, I had fallen for d other guy. He came back saying I shld try n understand his ways bla bla bla, doesn’t mean he doesn’t want me. I didn’t even say much, he noticed my coldness n put 2 and 2 together that Iv moved on, even dou I denied I have. Moral of d story, DO NOT put all ur eggs in one basket, especially when your relationship is shaky. My present guy is behaving so far, but i will still keep any interested suitor I may find. I’m not double dating, but I’m not closed off either.

    • lc

      January 1, 2016 at 6:27 pm

      no, please move on!!! why does being single at age 28 frighten you?
      you should be glad he left cause for a guy to break up with you for a trivail thing like that… its clear he was already tired of it all but used that minor issue as an excuse to break up!
      let him be, you’ll be doing yourself a big favour! give it time you’ll see.
      and my dear celebrate life, you’re alive meaning theres hope!!!

    • PD Young Billionaire

      January 2, 2016 at 3:57 am

      Why do you want to keep begging him?You don’t have to beg a guy that truly loves you this much.If he marries you and you guys have issues,is this how you will keep begging him before he forgives you?The guy is deep,abeg.You guys don’t even communicate that much..Pls,forget him.Cry a bit and move on.
      Focus on God,take your time to fast and pray that he connects you with a good man that will love and appreciate you.Don’t put unnecessary pressure on yourself because of your age.It’s not how early you marry but how well.All the best hun…

    • Maguim

      January 3, 2016 at 2:35 pm

      I don’t understand the “begging” part…..so now we should be pleading because having to help at home and thus not being able to see a boyfriend…..hi my dear sister, if he cannot understand that you had to help your mum, what else will you have to beg for in the future…… Welcome to 2016and start afresh…..do not be afraid

    • Kbebe

      January 4, 2016 at 2:33 pm

      Honey, move on. The distance was already a strain. He just made it easy for himself to move on. Please do the same. Single at 28 is not as bad as make it sound. How about married at 28, divorced at 29? Would you prefer that? All the best.

  6. Hoover

    January 1, 2016 at 2:50 pm

    A friend of mine had a similar issue with parents of his then girlfriend.They didnt approve because he was from a different tribe. The gf stood her ground and after 3 years of her parents rejecting and humiliating him when he visits, they finally came around . I personally think they came around because she was already approaching 30 and absolutely refused to see anyone else but her bf.They are married now.Patience is key and as long as he is ready to stand his ground, they will eventually come around. On the flip side, some parents(Especially religious fanatics) dont like their children getting married to someone from a broken/polygamous/born out of wedlock home which is a case i cant seem to understand

    • Iris

      January 1, 2016 at 5:01 pm

      Your story is different o. In your case it was the woman’s parents who had the problem. This time it is the guy. Like you said, your friend’s parents were panicking. Guys are allowed to go longer before marriage without judgement. It sucks but this is the yeye chauvinistic society we live in where the silliest things cause undue prejudice.

  7. madman

    January 1, 2016 at 2:52 pm

    Only true love conquers all. Sometimes, you can’t fight family. Pray and let it go.

  8. Puzzles

    January 1, 2016 at 2:53 pm

    I hate to say this but i don’t see it ending well (meaning eventually getting married). Never understand the power of parental influence. Tribal bias are really strong o

    Would it really be wise to get married to someone whose parents don’t like you? You say his other relatives approve of you, can you read their hearts? Do you know what they say about you when you are not around? All this effort to make them like you now. What would you be willing to do to make them love you if you eventually marry your boo?

    I may be wrong but your boyfriend doesn’t seem like a strong-willed person who would stand by you when the time comes. He might bow to his parents wishes. And my igbo brethren really take parental approval as important.

    I may be wrong and your love story may last forever. Wishing you the best with or without him.

    As for me, if the parents don’t like me, he has to be someone who i know can defend me and stand up for me. Then, the relationship can continue. If not, it wasn’t meant to be.

  9. Oge

    January 1, 2016 at 2:56 pm

    Am going to tell you something based on my personal experience. Read between the lines. You are believing his stories about his parents based on what he told you (I guess). I know that presentation matters a lot and so how he presents you to them will go a long way to determine how they accept you. Are u sure he is not making all this up to scare you away and put the blame on the “refusal” of his parents. Am not proud of this but I was in a relationship that lasted for years and when it was obvious i couldn’t lead him on, i came up with am excuse to walk away. I blamed it on my Dad (God forgive me), made up stories and didn’t even allow him meet my parents officially. This is why i said you should read between the lines.
    Let’s say this is not the case. What kind of man gives in to so much pressure from his parents. Even if you end up with him, can hr stand by you against his family when there is need for it. I didn’t understand this until i got married. Do you want to end up all alone when you have an issue in your home and he has to take the stand of his parents?
    Do you smell gold digging? Can he pay his own bills? Is there something he wants to gain by being with you? Only you can answer all this. I also think that of they already feel this way about without meeting you, there will always be resentment from their side and possibly from yours. You need to put all this into consideration before you decide.
    That’s my honest opinion.

  10. Mimee

    January 1, 2016 at 3:02 pm

    Hi dear, I feel your pain. but truth be told, no matter how hard you try, if a family does not accept you, you will just not fit in. it’s not all about getting married but staying married. the challenge you have is similar to my experience years back. Yours truely put it up that his parents may not like me (Inter ethnic marraige – Nigeria) but we should take d risk. He will stand by me all through, i was sceptical in the on set because i came from a loving family and will want my inlaws to share the same with me’and he showered Love ( with capital L). HHhhmmmmmnn! Long story cut short. i visited le boo Just on arrival, i have not dropped my hand bang even. i’ve not even sat down. and he dropped the bombshell- i can’t keep fighting my family all beacause of you. Let us part ways. Did my world come crashing (YES) i cried like i never did in my whole life. next day i gathered my broken piece- and back to base. Please do not compromise. He sounds tied to his family’s apron strings from ur narration. the pressure will eventually set in and break you down. Love yourself and he who values you will come along.

  11. Bee

    January 1, 2016 at 3:27 pm

    If your man was strong willed and not tied to his parents strings, then I would ask you to forge ahead. You dont want a man who cowers at the sound of his parents voice.

  12. Kenechukwu

    January 1, 2016 at 3:33 pm

    Your parents were never married.
    Your mother had children by different men

    That is never a good sign!

    • mimi

      January 1, 2016 at 3:57 pm

      You are mad. How is that her fault

    • mac

      January 2, 2016 at 8:12 am

      It is not her fault that her mum was never married and has kids with more than one man, but it is what is affecting her. Women you are like to eat your cake and have it, all this trying to do what a man can do and equal yourself to a man will not work, it will lead to more broken home. When you get married, as a woman nature require you to let somethings go, not your fault but that is how nature has made it, know your position that you are not equal to your husband and know your identity that you are woman and it come with some requirement

    • Puzzles

      January 1, 2016 at 4:03 pm

      Is that her fault?

      By the way, just 17 comments? Some people must be nursing hangovers

    • Iris

      January 1, 2016 at 5:03 pm

      YOU are not a good sign. Ode.

    • hmmmmn

      January 1, 2016 at 11:30 pm

      You really are silly bro.CHANGE

  13. beauty

    January 1, 2016 at 3:42 pm

    Babes, he is an only son, that’s pressure alone. But not much. I deduced from your write up that he prefers to please his family MORE than you. Even if he loves you and you both decide to stay together against all odds, you will be the unhappy one most times because you won’t have anybody by your side since the only one who is supposed to be on your side, which is HIM is clearly on a dual standpoint, if not more on the other side which is clearly not yours. It’s either he changes and show you more of everything and tells the family the truth about how amazing you are and his true feelings or you take a bow and leave and meet someone who himself and most part of his immediate family, if not all, will wholesomely love you.

  14. Uju

    January 1, 2016 at 3:50 pm

    Honestly this is a mamas boy from what I read. There’s no chance at all and you are setting yourself up for some SERIOUS heartbreak, stress and disssapointment.

    Somebody that wasn’t even brave enough to tell his parents that he spent the holiday at his girlfriends familys place. What else do you need? What other sign?

    This is dead on arrival to be frank and honest with you. You can try the watching and waiting for them to come around approach but anything you get take it like that. I know these kind of parents and they don’t play. Next thing you know they ve arranged an Igbo wife for him in your presence

    If you were the guy and he wAs the lady approaching 30, there’s a chance they may come round. But here we have an ONLY son, bearing the name of the family. They be got all the time in the world and get it ‘right’ they will for their son.

    Lastly, if one of the two was on your side as per mum or dad it would ve made a difference. But here they are united in their resolve. Girl……….. I am sorry but please tell yourself the truth.

    • Ifeyinwa Mic

      January 1, 2016 at 10:17 pm

      Yikes! Thanks for your honesty opinion. I will continue praying but will also remain realistic.

  15. Rani

    January 1, 2016 at 3:55 pm

    If he’s parents are dead set against your relationship, please move on.
    If you love something let it go, if it comes back to you then you’ll know. If not someone who will adore you and whose family will adore you will come along.
    Men from Igbo families are that way , they WILL NOT fight their families for you. I have so many examples to cite, about friends and family who were in your shoes , none of them ended up married to the guy. I have male cousins who left the loves of their lives to marry someone their parents approved of.

    Nuff said

  16. esteelauder

    January 1, 2016 at 3:57 pm

    This is exactly my story except in my own case, my parents didn’t like him at all and eventually it took its toll on the relationship and we ended up breaking up. I tried to stand my ground but it was really a difficult situation to be in Btw my parents and my ex. He also had a rough past, from a broken family etc but I truly believed he was a changed man. I was going to go ahead with but somehow my ex and I started having issues in Btw. I don’t know if you’re a Christian but mehn I prayed so much and they still didn’t budge. Now I have accepted that maybe it just wasn’t meant to be. Imagine getting married and you have issues, somewhere in your mind, you’d always think of their rejection and I didn’t want to live with that feeling. Plus my mom is also a strong believer, It just all felt like a war. If you’re very convinced and ready to face whatever situation comes up, go ahead if not I’d advice you let it go. You’d meet that person who’d accept you warts and all. Secondly, not all the details of your life needs to be revealed, parents are selfish about their children and would fight against anything that threatens that happiness forgetting that a person’s past doesn’t always define him.

  17. fan

    January 1, 2016 at 4:01 pm

    Give him space let him fight for his love.if he can’t convince his parents on what is good for him it means he is not man enough.A friend of mine had similar issue he fought hard to get his parents consent,it was when he finally bought them car to win their hearts,his parents couldn’t do more than to accept.Today they are happily married.be patient with him.

  18. Graced

    January 1, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    Babe to be real with you, any guy that can not stand his ground to his parents cannot stand for you when you are in the marriage.
    I was in a relationship for over 7years with a guy right from college, we both have good jobs and planning marriage although the parent have known me for over 2years now. But serious trouble started when the parents started holding up excuses that am from a single parent although I have half-siblings from dad’s side just I from mom. Am 27 and he’s 28, you can imagine pressure from my end on marriage stuffs. We planned wedding to the last minute, weddings clothes ready, hall booked n other arrangements, wedding notification already circulated. His parents never participated in anything cos he keeps giving impression that they are the stingy type and don’t want to spend.
    Finally all bubbles burst later that they are not interested cos of background stuffs, and guy is still preaching cocknbull stories of its only me you want and you can’t stand up to your parents.
    All these guys are just pretentious human beings sticking by a good girl till they can get an alternative after wasting your time.
    As for me, I cut off the relationship finally, cause I don’t know how long more I will have to wait till they change their minds.

  19. o

    January 1, 2016 at 4:15 pm

    Hmmmm….its tough. You can’t be held for the mistakes your parents made. You can only make sure that you do better. In my church, parental consent is extremely important esp that of the bride’s father. I won’t advise you go ahead without their consent. But it doesn’t even seem your bf will do that too. Again, you can’t wait forever for a guy that his umbilical cord is still tied to his mum’s (and dad). So what should influence your decision is how much you feel for him. If the love is so strong, then you can fight that battle. But if not, biko, move on. You’ll always find someone else.

  20. mrs chidukane

    January 1, 2016 at 4:21 pm

    Give it some more time. This would have been my story but for how God blinded and removed every person who would have been a stumbling block to my union. After the wedding it was like their eyes opened but it was too late. I know they’re not in love with me and don’t quite accept my family but we don’t send them as well and I couldn’t care less. My husband loves me very much and always has my back, plus I have a very close knit family so we’re good.

    However, your husband will never be able to stand up for you in front of his family and that is really bad because issues will always arise and you don’t want to be seen as the evil wife that insults her in-laws because you defend yourself. So my advice is if you really love him, pray hard about the situation and give it time. Also be prepared to be acquaintances with your in-laws and be ready for the wars ahead.

  21. Tunmi

    January 1, 2016 at 4:50 pm

    Try not to worry so much about the age, about his age and your age. You sound like a confident and self assured person. Give it another six months and if it doesn’t improve, call it quits.

  22. nene

    January 1, 2016 at 4:55 pm

    if his family can’t accept u i don’t think you should marry him, and he’s the first son in an igbo family ( a lot of responsibilities and pressure). it’s unfortunate you are being judged based on your mother’s actions, but this is what happens in life and it affects children’s marriage prospects among other things in future. i think you should be a bit more patient but if nothing changes, move on and leave him.

  23. DD

    January 1, 2016 at 5:01 pm

    Maybe you’re doubting his words about being willing to stand up and fight for your relationship because he hasn’t really shown it yet. If he is truly ready to stand by you, he can convince them that you’re the one for him but it will not be easy so he must be extremely persistent. If he couldn’t even tell his parents he was with you and your family for Christmas, then as much as he loves you, he might not be ready to show the firmness and perseverance that will be absolutely necessary for his parents to come around. If he can start showing those qualities, then you can give it a chance, but if not… girl, I guess you know the rest. All the best… you are obviously a confident and intelligent young woman, and you’ll land on your feet regardless.

  24. gina

    January 1, 2016 at 5:06 pm

    Please if his family don’t like you move on. I know it will be hard but you just have to.

  25. Le coco

    January 1, 2016 at 5:07 pm

    Hey knw of a similar situation.. some friends of mone have been trying to get married for 6 years.. The grooms family kept rejecting the bride.. who is a deaconess in our church… A very lovely woman with a decent job…. nobody really knows why the grooms family were so cold.. but finally the groom stood his ground… six years later.. We all gathered to celebrate this beautiful couple despite the absence of the grooms family.. Needless to say it was an amazing day and we danced till our feet hurt and the joy of the entire church( who had been waiting for this couple) was unbelievable

  26. Nkechi

    January 1, 2016 at 5:10 pm

    This case is different. Girl’s parents can compromise because disapproving of the only guy you are seeing with your daughter when your daughter is approaching 30 may come with future regrets. But this guy is the only man in his family. Let’s be honest, parents of a boy approaching 30 are usually not as concerned as parents of a girl approaching 30 or even 35. This to me is war and she needs supernatural wisdom, the kind of wisdom that sees the future. If I were this girl, I will pray about it. Is he really mine? If so I will be patient and keep fighting in the Spirit. Is he not mine and is God giving me signs so as to avoid a future catastrophe. No human being can give you an accurate answer. You need God to tell you if the devil is trying to take away your portion or if this is actually not your portion at all. That is what will determine your next step.

  27. Ronke

    January 1, 2016 at 5:25 pm

    My main issue about this stem from the fact that his parents already know so much about her before having met her. That makes me think that this will not work. And here why. In a relationship that are things you keep from friends and family in order for them to see your partner in the best light possible. Things such as her age; and how many fathers her siblings have would most likely only come from him and he shouldn’t have told them those things and as such i don’t think he is someone that can fight for you so I’ll say quit while ahead.

    • happy new year

      January 1, 2016 at 6:02 pm

      My dear, it isn’t necessarily him doing the talking oh! Our Nigerian people love discussing other people and their families. A Nigerian parent will go to the ends of the earth(especially igbo) to dig up information about who their children are dating. They call it “family investigation” and this is regardless of where the relationship is heading. Our parents and their friends are very meddlesome.

    • b

      January 1, 2016 at 6:39 pm

      aunty what do you mean by especially igbos?

    • Nnenna

      January 1, 2016 at 7:32 pm

      You can’t blame those who do family investigation. I was criticizing that concept until a family friend told me that his sister would have become a second wife to a man with two children if not for family investigation. We call it wisdom and due diligence. You need to know what’s up with them. Remember blood is still flowing from generation to generation and that is why your doctor takes your family history seriously.

    • Ifeyinwa Mic

      January 1, 2016 at 8:58 pm

      Family investigation can prove very useful, but at the very least they should get to know the girl before drawing their conclusions.

    • ElessarisElendil

      January 2, 2016 at 1:03 am

      They were introduced by her aunt and HIS uncle. Uncle told his parents.

    • Ifeyinwa Mic

      January 2, 2016 at 5:45 am

      Yup, my bf’s uncle told his brother (my bf’s father). It’s really weird because the uncle likes me. He calls me and we gist from time to time. I even spent some time at his home when I was traveling for work in his city. He tells his nephew that he will stand in his corner, so at least I know that he’s #teamus

  28. DOE

    January 1, 2016 at 5:47 pm

    The deepest truth about marriage is that you are starting a 3rd family. To a large extent, when you allow too much influence of the family into your own personal family affair, there’s trouble and this is proven. The most important factor in this dynamics is the GUY and his unwavering decision to stand by what the both of you share. If the guy is bamboozled by his folks then it is a large sign that the parents will run the show in the home. I fear guys who cannot make a commitment to stand and be resolute about a critical decision such as who to marry. Most importantly, how willing is the guy to stand by his resolve? There are many people who received immediate approval from both parents, had amazing weddings and were all smiles but their home is in a state of repellent shambles while on the flip side, there are marriages where it was a struggle for acceptance but the home is sailing impeccably. Now, at the end marriage is about two individuals not a 3rd, who are committed to a commitment of consistent openness to learning with application and communication.

  29. happy new year

    January 1, 2016 at 5:57 pm

    My situation is similar except its my parents who disapprove of the relationship. My bf and I are actually from the same tribe but my people have issues with his family history. It’s been a bit of a war from the first day my parents found out we were dating, which really is unfair on him. He didn’t choose to be born into his family. In th time we’ve been together even if he Hasn’t has done anything for me (he has), his influence has helped build my relationship with God but my parents couldn’t care less. They simply just don’t want any association. Surprisingly, they guy has been very gracious about it all, he’s been embarrassed several times and never for once got angry or said terrible things about my family.

    Exhausted all options and just trying a wait and see approach. In my late twenties and my parents don’t seem to care at all!

    • Kay

      January 1, 2016 at 9:38 pm

      Please free him he deserves better.

  30. Natu

    January 1, 2016 at 6:03 pm

    Hmmm… African parents and their ways. Let the children be!!! Is it your life???

  31. Omotee

    January 1, 2016 at 6:32 pm

    If the way you put down this matter is anything to go by, you sound like a fantastic lady with a right head on proper shoulders. I’m sure you love each other but unfortunately, love is never enough. Do you really want that extra drama on your plate? Cos life and marriage comes with its own special drama and challenges. Then adding parents in law who never liked you. See if you pull the moon to their window for them alone to see, they’d find something wrong with it. For how long do you want to fight? You’d end up spending more time defending yourself and your relationship than actually having one. And all that single parent story, they should please take several seats. The world is full of people from horrible backgrounds but pulled through and became excellent. Plus this is Nigeria where people think mummy and daddy being stuck in the same house even when they are unhappy equals proper marriage and togetherness. Repeat after me. I deserve better. Wish him well and look forward to an amazing 2016 with hopes of the best guy ever.

  32. Dr. N

    January 1, 2016 at 8:09 pm

    Any man who cannot convince his family to FALL in love with me is not husband material. He has to ensure that they scramble to please me because they know I can turn his heart away from them but will not.
    Dearest, can he fight u?
    drnsmusings.wordpress.com

    • Uju

      January 1, 2016 at 8:45 pm

      Nice blog my sister

  33. Tosin

    January 1, 2016 at 8:25 pm

    oh dear, first day of the year I can’t deal. they should go and marry their son, what’s your own?

  34. Olayemi

    January 1, 2016 at 9:01 pm

    That’s how I went to greet a random old friend and his mom started convincing me to be in a relationship with his son because he’s a Doctor. If you see the look I gave her, I didn’t even return to their house before I moved back to my base. Parents should either back of their son’s choice or marry their son! Simple! Life is beautiful abeg, marriage is just our fantasies.

  35. Ifeyinwa Mic

    January 1, 2016 at 9:09 pm

    Ok, so I am the poster. Just to clarify some things. His uncle and my aunt know each other very well (attended the same uni in Nigeria), so the bf’s parents had easy access to all the information that they needed. The bf is not a gold digger. I make more money now, but when he wraps us his last degree he will out earn me. I really believe that this is the first time that he has ever gone against what his parents want.

    One poster mentioned if I am sure that his siblings like me. Well, I know that one sister shares her parents beliefs so I know that she is encouraging him to keep his options open. The other siblings and I get along really well, but one can never be sure. I do worry about how things will be if we were to get married and I (we) chose to raise our kids a bit differently. Would they turn me into a villain or give him grief?

    I want peace in my house and I would love to be close (not too close ;)) with my in-laws. I’m not asking him to choose sides because, let’s be honest, this is his family, I just want them to get to know the person that I am and to see how much their son loves and wants to be with me. Definitely a lot to think about. Thanks for your comments/advice! Happy New Year!

    • mrs o

      January 1, 2016 at 10:11 pm

      Hi ifeyinwa.
      the issue is not the parents but the guy.

      Where doeshe stand? Will he have your back no matter what?
      My father in law does not like me, my husband knows this and so makes sure I have no direct contact with him. At first I didn’t understand cause the family (mother and sisters ) didn’t want me to know, so I would not be biased against their father.

      I kept trying to have a relationship with him until my sister in law showed me hate filled messages about me. It’s beyond crazy. We are from the same tribe but he thinks his son married a nobody.

      Anyway, I have little to no contact with him apart from perfontory greetings. His wife winks at me because apparently she can’t let on we get along fine.

      My point is, will your partner be a shield?
      If not, move along

    • Ifeyinwa Mic

      January 2, 2016 at 1:28 am

      He says that he is fighting hard for me and that he doesn’t tell me the half of the things that he does because he doesn’t want mw to have hard feelings towards his parents. I asked him to tell me exactly what they say and how he responds. I’m not sure if this is the best approach, but I’d rather have the whole truth no matter how ugly it is. I do feel like he wont be able to stand up for me in the long run. He has never gone against his parents. They picked his career and everything else. He’s a good son, no doubt.
      They are helicopter parents, with all due respect. I believe that this is extremely hard on him, but can’t pretend that everything is ok. My Nigerian aunts tell me to be patient and let the BF fight this battle. It’s all in God’s hands. What’s meant to be will be.

    • PharmD

      January 1, 2016 at 10:18 pm

      the thing is they will never see you differently. Him on the otherhand wo t stand up for you when they are there. Everything will be at your expense. Just move on

  36. TeeY

    January 1, 2016 at 9:48 pm

    My dear, don’t get too patient and comfortable o. I was in the same predicament. I do not understand Igbo, I’m not catholic which they are. He convinced me times without number that there was no problem. In the end, his family succeeded. After 2yrs together, he married their choice. So open your eyes very well and be sure not to lose out in the long run. And guess what, his mother liked me…but the father was not my fan.

  37. PharmD

    January 1, 2016 at 10:15 pm

    Do yourself a favor, don’t do it. Not because his parents don’t like you but because he is the type of man that can’t and won’t stand up for you ever ever. I am married to one of them and everyday is a regret. I just regret getting myself involved with such a person. A man without balls is the worst thing ever. Do yourself a favor and walk away right now.

    • BC

      January 2, 2016 at 1:16 am

      “A man without balls is the worst thing ever.”

      Oh my word thank- you for saying that. A spineless man will make even a goat run into a wall in frustration. I avoid them at all costs. I have an uncle like that and we all feel like pulling our hair out.

  38. Ifeyinwa Mic

    January 1, 2016 at 10:25 pm

    Thank you for your comment. I think he’s worth hanging on a bit longer.

    • ElessarisElendil

      January 2, 2016 at 1:10 am

      “I am bilingual.”??So’s he(Speaks English and Igbo!)???

      Your Boyfriend “assures me that he is fighting for me and that he wants to stand by me no matter what.”. So have a little faith that he’ll win them over.

      And since he’ll stand by you no matter what, you guys can seal the deal, judging from my Grand-father, they usually get over their angst after the first son. Their concerns may be due to fertility issues because of your age(archaic thinking I know).

      However I have to raise this since you’re Igbo. They might be having reservations if during their investigations they found out your family were outcasts(Osu), in which case give up on winning them over. Most Igbo especially of the older generation take the caste system seriously.

      Rooting for you!

    • Ifeyinwa Mic

      January 2, 2016 at 5:41 am

      Thanks! The boo doesn’t actually speak Igbo, but he understands it perfectly.

    • Sweetsie

      January 2, 2016 at 7:11 pm

      Yea but how much longer? After one year, you should know where you stand. Ill say give it 3 to 6 more months. If nothing changes, its time to move on. I broke up with my ex at age 30 (I thank God everyday I broke up with him. Relationship was emotionally draining). Met a great guy at age 31. After few months of dating, he proposed to me. We’re tying the knot in few months time. What im saying is, a right man for you won’t waste your time at all. I’m afraid this guy is not ready to settle down with you anytime soon. If you know your worth, then you deserve better. Goodluck.

  39. Ogamadam

    January 1, 2016 at 11:06 pm

    Lol, I just knew you would end up with this comment, the dog that will get lost will not listen to the hunter’s whistle, darling , if you think your chances of starting over at 28 are slim, try them at 35. An Ibo man, who is an only son will NEVER choose you over his family and if he does, can you guarantee based on his current track record that he will do so for life?.. But from my personal experience I know you will make excuses for him, good luck, I hope I am proven wrong darling…

    • Ifeyinwa Mic

      January 2, 2016 at 3:17 am

      Not making excuses, rather trying to be objective. Again, thanks for the comments BNers.

  40. mac

    January 1, 2016 at 11:08 pm

    Here is why his parent don’t want you, it is the bitter truth that will break your heart. The error of your mother not being with one man is the only reason they do not want their son to be with you. They do not want that for your kids, even if you will say you will not do that, girls from broken home or mother with kids from more than one man, are believed to go by their mother past ways over a period of time. Girls from such situation will later in life say, if my mother did not die and survive, I can as well hav a broken home, which is what his parent are foreseeing and do not want for their son, sorry that is the reason, your mother past has come to hurt you. That is why they say, what ever decision you make today might affect your kids tomorrow, so know what is right an make the right decision which is bitter and difficult

  41. She

    January 1, 2016 at 11:31 pm

    I read this post earlier in the day but i felt like i didnt ned to reply since most people agreed with me on you moving on but i am subscribed to an amazing woman on youtube the bronzegodess and i was watching her motivational videos which is this youtu.be/iQgEHA372VI?list=PLCCEC12CEED4EA44F i think you should watch it and i wish you continued success.

    • She

      January 1, 2016 at 11:41 pm

      and 1 more thing she has this strawberry letters on her channel where you can send in your emails and she replies with her advice check her out and you could watch her other videos too.

  42. Abi

    January 1, 2016 at 11:33 pm

    Pray and follow what your heart is telling you. There are times when it works well for some people, and there are times when it doesn’t work well for others. I had a friend whose parents didn’t like his girlfriend because she’s black American and he’s Nigerian. He stood by the girl, and they got married. He knew he wanted to marry her, and they didn’t have a choice. I know of someone else whose sister didn’t like his girlfriend. The boy probably didn’t like the girl enough. They ended up breaking up. Do not follow your emotions (how you feel about him), instead be analytical. Listen to your heart and go for what it tells you.

  43. nina

    January 2, 2016 at 12:14 am

    BN, please stop these silly articles in 2016! there’s so much more to write about than “my man is cheating”, “my man’s mom hates me”, “how to hook a man in 12 days”, “how do I get pregnant” stories. I am not the only woman who is tired of these tired stories. Please write more stories of substance. I love your site but my visits have decreased significantly overtime.

    • ElessarisElendil

      January 2, 2016 at 1:11 am

      But………But……….entertainment value. I love reading other peoples problems, you don’t????

  44. think well o

    January 2, 2016 at 3:57 am

    to add to what everyone has said. please remember that if you guys eventually get married, at some point when you give birth the husband’s mother comes to live with you for omugwo (i hope i spelt it right). basically to help take care of the baby. if your mother in law doesn’t like you or she’s just tolerating you because the guy convinced them to , she’ll find every excuse to fight you and make your life miserable. I’ve seen it happen before. and with the kind of man you described above who is a mama’s boy he won’t say anything or support you when that happens. Think about it well o.

  45. ...just saying

    January 2, 2016 at 7:34 am

    Ifeyinwa, you’ve made your decision and already know you want to hang on longer so why waste people’s time. Women sef! Hian.

    • Ifeyinwa Mic

      January 2, 2016 at 6:43 pm

      So if I had chosen another alternative would you have made the same comment? I was genuinely seeking advice and, now that I have it, will do what I believe is best FOR ME. Thanks and Happy New Year!

  46. Excellence

    January 2, 2016 at 10:48 am

    Read through the lines carefully and advise yourself. I met boo through a friend and we clicked from the very moment we spoke. We dated for almost two years before we got married which was quite strange to me cos like 6 months into the relationship, we knew we were meant for each other. I didn’t get to realize that the mother was the reason for the delay, until we got married. So the wars were single handedly fought by hubby! That, I applaud him for. OK, we get married and MIL starts showing herself. Wouldn’t and hasn’t tasted my food (been married for three years), so domineering to the point that she came to our house with an agent friend to get us a house in an area she wanted because she didn’t want the area we wanted! We successfully moved out (wasn’t a good environment to raise kids). She would call to ask questions such as ‘have you people done xyz? when do you intend to? when you guys are ready to do it, do it Bla Bla Bla… Before you realize what is happening, she is telling you what to do and if you act otherwise, you are being disobedient. Anyway I stopped picking her calls and I don’t call either. It’s been two years now. I am fully in charge of my home just like she has been in her home! There were times that hubby was on her side on some issues, but guess what? I always prevailed at the end of the day. Thanks to my mother who taught me how to pray. She has given up on us. My point here is this, if you are not THICK-SKINNED and PRAYERFUL , grab your slippers, dust them and run! I wouldn’t have walked away even if hubby had told me while we were dating that his mother didn’t like me, because I have conquered bigger situations in the place of prayer. this one na akamu case. My philosophy in life is that NOBODY, born of a woman, is human enough to make me unhappy!

    • Natu

      January 2, 2016 at 11:40 am

      This is exactly why I told my friend that nigerian men were meant for nigerian women. Y’all are equipped to deal with the BS. A worldly and exposed woman like myself could never deal with all the BS you just mentioned. I will put that MIL in her rightful place!!!

    • Ifeyinwa Mic

      January 2, 2016 at 6:34 pm

      Thanks so much @Excellence. My skin is thick but I could definitely pray more. Thanks for sharing your experiences. May peace and happiness remain in your house IJN!

  47. Jane

    January 2, 2016 at 9:35 pm

    babe please leave him and move on. He was clearly not into the relationship. Trust me a man that loves you would do more to talk and be with you.

  48. Jane

    January 2, 2016 at 9:36 pm

    This is a dicey situation, if you say me, be patient and pray about it.

  49. Mimi

    January 4, 2016 at 4:51 pm

    You deserve a better man cos obviously you’ve done well for yourself. Please take a BOLD WALK and you will be happier for it. You see, the dude has nothing to loose here……cos the handwriting is clearly written on the wall for you to decipher and make a decision…..

  50. chi-e-z

    January 6, 2016 at 7:32 am

    It’s something else his igbo dad and american mom don’t like you. It’s not that you don’t speak igbo and I doubt it’s single parent background. Maybe they think this is an advantageous marriage where the son is being used. I believe if you,yourself are as good a catch as you paint you do not have to struggle for a man whom doesn’t truly love you. You say you are realistic be truthful with yourself and what is it that makes his parents fill you are unfit for their son? can you change those things or address them? Are you especially loving and kind to his mother? Way to secure a man’s heart especially since it’s not true/chi designed love [igbo’s respect destined/true love alot] is be the best gosh dang cook he’s ever had and if his mother just adores you. DDDDon’t play with a man’s food or mother[mother figure].

    • chi-e-z

      January 6, 2016 at 7:47 am

      In essence what I’m saying is if he is worth it he’ll fight for you, look hot AF [so if he ever think of leaving.he’ll cry longer], love yourself and be the best you you can be, and don’t play with the man’s food and mom[especially if he has great relationship with her.if he doesn’t… know why. If she’s cray cray stay away unless when absolutely neccessary] 😀 heed these things and whether it’s this guy you marry or not you’ll be an A+ wife forget stepford wives lol

  51. Aviela

    January 18, 2016 at 11:04 pm

    Wow!!this is a lot of work,i was already getting stressed out just reading all this,this is just a tip of the iceberg though,you cannot even begin to imagine how much more would happen when you guys tie the knot against his parent’s wishes.Do you think you are ready to face that?.Marriage is a lot of work without having to deal with the in laws,These are things you have to think through and all,i know you have done very well for yourself and i commend you,it’s a pity some people can be shortsighted and judge people by the actions of their parents.

  52. Aviela

    January 19, 2016 at 12:18 am

    Wow!! this is so much work,i was already getting exhausted just reading this.It’s so sad that people are so shortsighted that we are judged by the actions of our parents.I commend you,you have achieved a lot for yourself and i that anyone who does not see that does not deserve a second of your time.Marriage is a lot of work,without the drama of the in laws,you are already going through this,can you even imagine how much more you would have to deal with if you tie the knots without their approval? are you really ready to deal with it all the while still waiting and praying for their approval which may never come?I do not for a second doubt that you love each other,but when it comes to marriage love is not just enough,

  53. Ayo

    January 19, 2016 at 11:34 pm

    My Dear the Igbos Are Prefer to Marry Among themselves for Whatever Reason! Don’t Bother trying to please his Parents they will Always Prefer an Igbo girl who is from same village! That is Just how they Are.
    Also ur boyfriend is a very WEAK guy as he cannot stand up to his Parents! Such a Weakling cannot Protect U against them if u eventually get married which I suggest u Don’t Cos such family do not deserve a Hard working girl like U as their inlaw.
    They will give u hell!! RUN AWAY
    You are very young and accomplished U will find a REAL man who can be proud of u and show u off to everyone including his Parents Ok

  54. Ifeyinwa Mic

    February 18, 2016 at 5:15 am

    Just wanted to give an update, in case anyone was interested. I read all of the comments, prayed about the situation, and had some serious talks with a pastor, the guy, and other close friends and it became very clear what i needed to do. I recently ended things with le boo. I love him dearly but he is not quite a man yet. He told me that his parents would need 2 years to come around to the idea of us being together and asked me if I were ready for such a huge fight and willing to wait. Love can only go so far. I can’t waste 2 years of my time worrying if his parents will ever accept me. May they marry their son or find someone for him that ticks all of their boxes. I had to walk away. It was not an easy decision to make, but I believe I made the best one for myself. I can’t think about marrying someone who isn’t willing to stand up to his parents and advocate on his own behalf. One main issue that kept occurring was the thought of raising kids. If his parents didn’t like the way I chose to raise our kids would they give me hell and if the bf take their side. I can’t be fighting wars the rest of my life. We will remain as friendly as possible, but our time has passed. Thanks everyone for your advice. 🙂

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