So earlier this month, I began discussing the topic of dealing with your soon to be in-laws, focusing specifically on the close relationship between mother and son and how you can stop feeling left out.
Today I look at other challenges that some couples have to face such as the differences around culture, religion and lifestyle this time with the expert help of psychotherapist Lesley Haswell from Haswell Therapy in London.
Lesley has been working with individuals both long and short term for 9 years and specializes in existential therapy and CBT, both of which focus on how we are living now. Her clients come with many issues including anxiety, depression, relationships, fertility, addiction and phobias and her style is warm and friendly.
With one of the biggest factors of today’s society being how our families have evolved and changed from the traditional nucleus. Some parents are now divorced and some have even remarried to create an extended family that includes not only step- parents but in some cases step siblings as well. For the couple getting married the extended family can be extremely difficult especially when the original and new families have never met or just don’t get on, so what do you do?
According to Lesley its simple don’t beat yourself up as ultimately you are not responsible for everyone else’s happiness and you can only do your best. She suggests speaking to everyone informally before the wedding or at a social event where they can all meet each other and you can explain your anxieties. Nine times out of ten no one wants to upset the apple cart at a wedding so by being open and honest you will find that people will work with you to make sure no disagreements occur.
Mixed relationships is also another major issue for some families especially when parents have an ideal image of a potential spouse that simply does not reflect the ethnicity, religion, lifestyle or culture you have fallen in love with. Again honesty is the best policy here and by showing a united front in all your decision making speaks volumes on how both of you want your lives to be accepted and reflected. For example if that means carrying out two ceremonies for your wedding then so be it, everyone will know up front that you have embraced both sides and the dissenters will learn to accept your united front.
To hear more on this topic and Lesley’s opinions head to the Butterfly Journal podcast at www.pierrecarr.com/podcast.
As always I would love to receive your comments about your experiences on any of the topics we have covered so far.
Until next time, Happy Planning!