“Jaw With John” – Sisters In Law Can’t Hang

My husband is the youngest of three brothers, and we were married last of the bunch.

My older sisters-in-law have become close friends over the years. They have a lot in common — both are teachers (I work in finance), both are of Swedish decent (I’m Greek), and both have two sons (I have three daughters).

We all live in different parts of the country, but spend Christmas in our husbands’ hometown.

I have tried very hard over the years not to feel like the third wheel, but it’s hard when they have so much in common and I can’t relate to many of their conversations.

I have tried to connect with them individually between Christmases, but I’m always the initiator — they never reach out to me. I know they maintain close contact with one another, but I rarely hear from them.

I hesitate to bring up that I’m feeling left out because I want them to be in a relationship with me by choice, not make the effort out of obligation. Also, once when I indicated that I felt a bit left out, one of them got very offended and I felt I had to apologize for feeling that way.

How can I be fair to them (not force them to read my mind), not come off as whiny or needy, and still form a genuine connection with them when there doesn’t seem to be room for me? — Third Wheel Sister

Dear Sister:

Are they first generation Swedish-American or something? And do they speak Swedish to each other? This is just a coincidence and their relationship has been built over time. It sounds like you’re making an excuse as to why they are better friends with each other than you.

You have every right to feel like you’re being left out, because you are. Suggest that you get together every now and then and see what happens. Don’t feel bad that you have to instigate it, if you want to connect with them badly enough then go for it! In the end if they start to spurn your requests you know you have tried and they just don’t want to let new people in so screw them and enjoy your life!

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