My In-Laws Didn’t come to my Wedding

Why?

? ? RED FLAG ? ?

OK, yes maybe I should have seen this sooner, however when you are love bombed, you overlook any strange stories you are told, you also accept excuses no matter how strange they may seen. If someone tells you certain people, such as family or friends are bad for them, or have been abusive, you believe them. Right?

Back in 2014 I married my partner, throughout the process I dropped hints about family and whether she was sure she didn’t want her family there, one day she turned around and told me that if I invited them (without her knowledge) and they turned up at the venue, she would not walk down that aisle, that she would leave and “that would be that. Obviously I did not want that to happen at the time, so I did not get in touch or contact them, after all it was not really my place. As far as I was aware, the day would be ruined with their attendance, them changing things or upsetting us (as well as myself being told on several occasions they disagreed with same sex couples and would not even keep a television show on the TV if there was any talk of anything other than “normal” hetrosexuality).

We married on our 2 year anniversary and had been engaged about 2 weeks short of 2 years, you could say that in itself was another red flag. Did I think it was fast? Yes. But I WAS happy.

Later on, married and plodding along slowly in life, my in laws became involved in our lives again. We were looking at houses to buy and there had been a death in the family. I often sat and quietly thought in my head, things were odd, or that the way people spoke to each other or treated each other did not match how I was told to expect or thought I would expect. It was every now and then I thought to myself; “Did I imagine she told me all those awful things?” and the simple answer to this was no – I did not imagine the things I was told. It is a shame that whilst I saw the Mask my ‘Wife’ wore in front of others, I failed to see that another mask was being worn for me. Neither of these masks portrayed the true person I thought I knew. The person I married. Once that mask came down, it revealed a person I do not know.

Once my in laws were in my life more than before, small things such as becoming friends on social media with some of the family happenned, for the two of us (if they were friends before then my privacy settings had to be changed), there was also many things I could not put on there or was told I should not put up, because they would see it. It was at this point a post arose about how someone really felt about our wedding day. As well as those family and friends commenting on that. They obviously worried about it later on as it was deleted, however not soon enough and not only did we see it, it was saved. And before you ask…. No it has not been discussed, it was just ignored and not acknowledged. I have hidden names, pictures and any foul language also from these saved shots.

Personally, on seeing this, I got a little upset. Deep down I knew why they were not there, (whether truth or not) it was not me that prevented an invite, in someway I could have gone against my partners wishes, however that would have resulted in no wedding. Looking back now, I would have avoided a lot of problems, however you can only do what you feel is right at the time. But not only did it stop there, family and friends, some of whom I had met also felt the need to add comments onto this online post. Again, pictures, names and foul language have been hidden.

Many of these people carried on chatting as normal too once they were back into my partners life. I personally do not understand how some people can be so different, I guess the word is two faced, however this could be wrong. I wonder what they are all saying now? I also wonder if they know the truth?

“Right from the start you were a thief, you stole my heart”

TRIGGER WARNING – Please take care, some of this content may cause upset and distress. Reach out for support if needed. 💜

“And I your willing victim”

Sound familiar? Yes that is a P!nk song

I had heard of people relating this song, ‘Just give me a reason‘ to a (damaging) relationship. However, I had not really thought about it. If I’m honest I could not really relate, although I love the song!

Looking back now, the song is actually pretty relevant to me. From the start of my last relationship, my heart was stolen by a kind, attentive and charming person. I had been back in the country for just over a year after spending 6 months away volunteering and nearly 2 years post relationship with my first serious boyfriend, who I thought I would marry and spend my life with. Within two weeks of seeing this person, totally infatuated, I accepted a drunken proposal. Despite it being nothing like I imagined-after double checking they remembered actually asking I said yes!!

Two years later we married.

Again, looking back before actually marrying I can see how I was totally attracted and won over by the charm, happy moments and love I felt. Ignoring the red flags and brief explanations for situations. Hiding myself and not telling my future in laws about our engagement, even going as far as her renting another room in the house (only used for storage) “just in case” anybody asked or visited. Because they “could not know.” By the time they knew we had moved to Wales and my ex had said she had cut out her family. I was the bad person who took her away from her family. Which was far from the truth. I wish I questioned this more at the time. Another red flag missed.

During the engaged-married phase we had good times, with very few disagreements. I shared stories, history and wounds. I felt happy and comfortable. I let someone gain my trust.

I identify with these words more so with the later experiences in the relationship, but definitely at least 2.5 years of the relationship. Feelings, events, emotions and even generalised facts that turned out to be true came out during sleep. Inconsistencies appeared, but I was persuaded that anything said during sleep was “not real” or “related to previous trauma” which I was told had “nothing to do” with myself. Everything had an explanation or excuse. For some reason, I just accepted these.

A barrier began to raise. Chemistry began to reduce, feelings changing. Nothing like the early stages of the relationship. Another major Red Flag missed.

Again, looking back, I was hooked. Love made me stay. It made me ignore anything that upset me, confused me or hurt me.

Like a circle, patterns and behaviours went round and round. Pain was fixed by promises and persuasion, kinder words, acts or gestures seemed to put a plaster over the issue. Things would plateau, before beginning the cycle again.

I was hooked.

Life revolved around happiness, experiences, sex and pleasure as well as a connection. Before switching back to negativity, tension and silent treatment. Where again, one small gesture or kind word seemed to fix things. Or so I thought.

Things on several occasions got to the point where I would sit there and think of reasons to stay. Reasons to fight. Reasons to change.

And then there is gaslighting

A person I loved. A person I trusted using my own trauma, my own insecurities and my own weaknesses to their advantage. Unknowingly being insulted and manipulated into thinking my feelings did not matter, that my concerns and genuine gut feelings were wrong. Even when having justification and evidence.

I was made to feel crazy and paranoid.

At the time I thought the stresses of life, bills, work and ill health were causing tension. Things felt empty. But yet I still was being made to believe my actions led to the situation. They obviously did not help and contributed but was definitely not the major issue. I wanted to fight, blinded by love. I thought we would be together forever. Despite looking at other couples and longing for their connection with my own wife.

Fast forward and behaviours continued, false promises made – resulting in “I don’t love you anymore.” Of course I came back within 24 hours – with the hope of change, false promises and a “mistake” being made. Yet things continued and the truth came out. There was someone else who had all the love that I was no longer being given.

Walking away was hard. But it had to be done. My wife at the time was in love with someone else, portraying me to others as someone I wasn’t.

It is amazing what information people come to you with, once a relationship is over. Finding out about things that have been said and done. Money saved away and plans to move others into my home. Expecting me to leave with nothing.

I wish I noticed the Red Flags sooner. I really do. Part of me also wishes I left sooner, before the added issue of her falling completely head over heels in love with someone else – like we did with each other years ago. If I had walked away sooner, perhaps the emotional damage would have been less?

These are just some of the reasons I find myself relating to this song more now, than following the release. I may be losing a marriage, my home and the life I knew. But I no longer have to;

  • Lie,
  • Withhold information,
  • Follow others rules in my own home,
  • Be silent,
  • Push myself when in a flare,
  • Ask permission to do certain things,
  • Play happy families,
  • Hide my chronic illnesses,
  • Sit silently while others call me the “friend” or the “partner” and allow people to not call me by my correct name or write the wrong name on cards without letting them know it is not correct,
  • Be manipulated, treated like rubbish and told I am imagining things, being crazy or paranoid.

I can start trying to be me again. Find myself and heal. I can find someone who does love me for me and protect me, rather than damage me.

I hope.