Question:

My family is dysfunctional and fractured. For the holidays, I'll most likely end up having buffet at the nearest casino with my dad and 13-year-old son. My boyfriend of two years will be spending the holidays with his mom and his out-of-town sisters, along with other friends and family.

Long story short, I've never met his mom and she has no desire to meet me. From what I understand, it's because I'm a divorced, single mom. I mentioned to my boyfriend my depressing Thanksgiving situation and he didn't say anything.

We've discussed marriage, but how do I reconcile his refusal to invite me to a family function when he proclaims a desire to spend a lifetime with me?

Answer: If I read your account correctly, you didn't say to him that you wanted to be with him on Thanksgiving, that you wanted to meet his mom, that you wanted him to stand by you if you weren't welcome at his mom's.

Meanwhile, if you think a casino buffet for Thanksgiving is depressing, then why is/was it even an option? Surely you could have collaborated on a meal at home? Surely you could have made reservations at a restaurant?

When you don't have something you want, it's your job, and no one else's, either to get it or spin your straw into gold.

In other words, make your own celebrations on your own terms, and invite your boyfriend to join you. If he says no and cites his mom's gatherings as the reason - and doesn't invite you and yours - then bring the question directly to him of reconciling your exclusion with his talk of marriage.

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