My parents don’t like my boyfriend!

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

I have been dating my BF for 15 1/2 months now. 6 Months we were together face to face, and the rest of the time was a long distance relationship.
Many problems have come up, between my parents and him. They think he isn’t responsible enough and that he is not good enough for me and that I deserve better.

I do love him very much, and we even talk about getting married and having kids. I am planning on going to University in Israel where he lives and studying there, I want to be an X-Ray technician.

Anyways, it has come to the point where my parents dont want to hear about him anymore and they want me to just break up with him. But I can’t I love him. They started saying things like he is trying to control you, or he is lying to you. Thing is, they weren’t even with me when me and him were together. They know nothing, they dont even know how happy he makes me.

I want to go and live with him, but my parents said if I go to Israel, then they want me to forget about them. To not try to call them or any type of contact. Im scared of loosing my parents and im scared of loosing my bf. I want to be able to get both sides… why does it have to be soo hard?
If I go to Israel, I know my parents will be upset. But will they really never talk to me again? I feel like I wont be able to go on without them, same way I feel with my bf if I leave him. Please help.

A: How on earth did communication break down so badly between you and your parents that you are all now resorting to threats and counter-threats? Take a deep breath, everyone, and slow way down. There is no need to shatter a family over love.

Your parents don’t know this young man so of course they are worried about you. You are 19 and you are talking about going to a part of the world that is in turmoil. They don’t trust that you have a realistic view of your boyfriend since you only had 6 months of being physically together. They’ve had no time to get to know him as you do. They haven’t seen how he makes you happy or how the two of you operate as a mature couple making mature decisions. Further, it’s easy to be suspicious of a stranger.

If the two of you genuinely love each other and want a future that includes your parents’ blessing and involvement, the obvious solution is for him to come to the U.S. and spend time with your family so they can get to know him. Then the conversation will be based on real experience with a real person rather than on their worries. It’s well worth spending a summer together here if the long-term result is family support.

If he can’t afford to visit, you should help him. You are talking about your mutual future so it should be a mutual expense. If he is unwilling to invest three months to win a lifetime of family support, maybe your parents are right.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 9 Apr 2008

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2008). My parents don’t like my boyfriend!. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 1, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2008/04/09/my-parents-dont-like-my-boyfriend/