How to Cope When You Love Your Boyfriend but Hate His Family

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How to Cope When You Love Your Boyfriend but Hate His Family

Oh No! The In-Laws.

What do you do if your boyfriend is an articulate, caring, handsome soul and his family is…well, the closest scientists have ever come to finding the missing link?

It’s not easy to be with someone if you’re not wild about his family, but no one ever said the path to true love was supposed to be easy.

i can't stand the in-laws

Do you pretend or make the feelings well know?

These suggestions will help you find the difficult balance between loving him and being less than crazy about his relatives.


Be Honest and Kind

Unless your boyfriend is completely oblivious, he probably senses the conflict between you and his family.

Don’t risk harming your relationship with him by lying and saying everything’s fine, but don’t trash the people he loves, either. For instance, it’s fine to say, “As you’ve probably noticed, your brother and I have very different beliefs.”

It’s not such a good idea is to say, “I can’t sand your brother because he’s a brain-dead redneck.”


Limit Contact

Don’t try to stop your boyfriend from seeing his family, but don’t feel you have to join him on every visit.

Putting in an appearance once in a while or only on special occasions is just fine.


Develop Selective Hearing

ignorance is bliss

Sometimes ignorance is the better policy

Rather than get into a fight that you can’t win, ignore any family members who try to get a rise out of you by deliberately making annoying comments.

Simply act as if you didn’t hear the offensive remark and start a conversation about another subject.


Play Dumb

You CAN WIN in a Divorce - I have and I'll tell you how too!

This is a technique that works well whether you’re a contractor accounting software saleswoman or a college professor.

If you can’t ignore an offensive comment or joke, use the old trick of playing dumb.

Give the person who made the remark a puzzled look and say, “I don’t understand. teWhat do you mean by that?”

Most people who make snide remarks don’t have the courage to deliver a direct insult eye to eye.


Come Up with a Stuck Needle Response

Another way to handle disagreements with your boyfriend’s family is to repeat the same thing over and over — like an old, scratched vinyl record — until they get the idea.

You might try something like, “I know you feel very strongly about this, and it looks like we’ll just have to agree to disagree.”

Then change the subject.


Don’t Put Your Boyfriend in the Middle

No matter how badly his family may be behaving, it’s not fair to put your boyfriend on the spot by demanding he choose between them and you.

If you and his mother disagree about something, for instance, don’t look at your boyfriend and say, “Paul thinks I’m right, don’t you, Paul?”

You may be surprised and disappointed by his response.


Discuss Specific Issues in Private

There will probably always be some issues between you and your boyfriend’s family that won’t go away.

Most of these issues, like political and religious disagreements, are annoying but harmless. If something about his family’s behaviour makes you truly uncomfortable, however, discuss it with your boyfriend in private and decide as a couple how you want to handle the situation.

For instance, if you are uncomfortable with the comments his uncle makes about your body, you may agree that it’s best for you to avoid family gatherings that his uncle is expected to attend.

Being in love is hard enough without having to weather a complicated family situation, too, but if you keep a cool head, you and your boyfriend will be able to find a solution that works for everyone.


Speak Your Mind, With Your Opinion

Nice to see you made it this far so here’s what you can do next:

  • What’s been your own experience with your In-Laws?
  • If you had in-laws you couldn’t stand, would you really tell your partner?
  • Click one of the Share buttons – your friends can then read this article too.

And thanks for reading too – Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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Avatar of Michael

Michael is an aspiring writer with a passion for blogging who currently works for a contractor accounting software company. When he’s not working, he enjoys being outdoors, traveling, and blogging on everything from technology, to business, to marketing, and beyond.

Michael – who has written posts on GeekandJock.


  1. wrote on December 18th, 2012 at 3:40 pm


    I truly enjoyed reading this post. This is a problem I am facing these days. My guy has three sisters, and each one of them is such a nasty woman. They never let us spend some quality time with each other. Every now and then, one of them will call him up , with a list of things that their brother should do for them. I really hate this. And my boyfriend loves his sisters a lot, so in no sense I can show my disapproval to him, as this will affect our relation. You have surely given me some points to ponder upon and in turn apply to my situation. Thanks for this post.

  2. wrote on December 17th, 2012 at 1:23 pm


    Oh boy have I been in Jennifer Lopez’s shoes hehe

    So many times have I wanted to punch my boyfriend’s mother right in the nose. She’s been such an utter bitch to me and my guy. Thanks for the tips. I think I’ll start with the ignoring approach and see how that goes :)

    • wrote on December 18th, 2012 at 2:22 am

      Michael C. Deaven

      Thanks for the comment, Lisa! First let me say congratulations on NOT punching her.. that would be the worst way of dealing with her!

      I’m glad you liked the tips, I really hope they can help you and your relationship!
      Michael C. Deaven recently posted..5 Issues Faced by Storefront StartupsMy Profile

  3. wrote on December 17th, 2012 at 12:59 pm


    Saw this float by on StumbleUpon, Michael.
    I gotta say I’ve been through this so many times, it isn’t funny, with past boyfriends. Well, even my current one too lol

    For me, ignoring their stupid antics and owning my own power has worked wonderfully. For me any way.

    I don’t agree with limiting contact as I prefer to support my man in any way I am able.

    • wrote on December 18th, 2012 at 2:20 am

      Michael C. Deaven

      Hey, Bella! Sorry to hear you’ve been through this with so many boyfriends, but that’s great that you’ve found a way to deal with the situation that works for you!

      Limiting contact is obviously something you don’t want to HAVE to do, but for certain relationships it’s better than nothing!

      Thanks for your feedback!
      Michael C. Deaven recently posted..5 Issues Faced by Storefront StartupsMy Profile

  4. wrote on December 12th, 2012 at 6:51 pm

    Julia Reed

    I could not agree with you more that avoiding conflicts and limiting contacts are the best strategies possible. It would be stupid to tell your man to choose between you and his family. Think what would you do in a similar situation.
    Julia Reed recently posted..How to Text in Class Without Being Caught by AnyoneMy Profile

    • Avatar of Martin
      wrote on December 14th, 2012 at 6:52 pm


      It’s surprising how often a partner will have the other make a choice between them and something else. As you rightly say though, Julia, it is stupid.
      People should never give an ultimatum as the resulting decision might not be what they were expecting.
      Ever had this done to you?
      Martin recently posted..Are Guys Attracted to Physical Beauty?My Profile

    • wrote on December 15th, 2012 at 2:15 am

      Michael C. Deaven

      Exactly, Julia! Even if your boyfriend’s family isn’t the nicest to you, it’s not fair to make him choose between you and them. I would never be able to chose anyone over my family. Blood is thicker than water, as they say.

      If all of the things I suggested in this post fail, I always just think how it could be worse.. You could be Ben Stiller in Meet the Parents! No one can be worse than Robert De Niro as a former CIA agent!

      Thanks for the comment!
      Michael C. Deaven recently posted..5 Issues Faced by Storefront StartupsMy Profile

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