Dear Sangita: My parents love my boyfriend more than they love me

Sangita Patel is Streets of Toronto’s new advice columnist and was previously an entertainment reporter with ET Canada. She lives in Toronto with her husband and two daughters. 


Dear Sangita: I think my parents love my boyfriend more than me. They’ve only known him for two years, and they often try to hang out just with him. It makes me feel like they don’t love me. What should I do?  — Fourth wheel

Dear Fourth: It’s kind of weird that they only want to hang out with him and not you, and it’s wrong for them to say that he’s too good for you — that’s the wrong message. They may just be joking, but if you’re sensitive to it, you should acknowledge it. I think your parents may just be on a high that you found someone so special. A lot of in-laws don’t get along with the partner, and you’re in a special place where you’re not even married and your parents are in love with your partner. It took a long time for my dad to say, “You’re good enough for my daughter!” So this is not necessarily a bad thing. To embrace this situation, organize something that you like to do and invite both your parents and your boyfriend so you feel like you’re in charge of the environment. If you have a bit more control, you’ll be part of the narrative again.

Dear Sangita: My husband is pretty good at doing his part at home. He cooks, cleans, grocery shops, all of that. But every time we visit his parents, he becomes lazy and expects me to do everything the way his dad expects his mom to do everything. How do I bring this up with him? — Woe is wife

Dear Woe:  The truth is, when you visit your in-laws, they might have a certain way they do things. There are cultural or generational situations where the men will all hang out at the couch while the women are in the kitchen doing the cooking and cleaning. Parents are going to spoil their sons — I’m speaking from experience here! It’s unfortunate that he does this at his parents’ place, but that’s hard to change. What isn’t OK is if he brings that attitude of expecting you to do certain things for him home with him.

I suggest you ask him, “Is this how we do this at home?” I would put it in your husband’s court to answer. When you ask, “Do you think this is the right thing for you to be asking me?”, you’ll see how quickly he’ll realize he’s in the wrong.  

Dear Sangita:  I’ve been dating my partner for two years now, and I don’t like her friends. They’re overbearing with her and judgmental of her life decisions. I want to be honest with her, but I don’t think she’ll want to hear it. What should I do?  — Best friends for never

Dear Best: My husband has his own life, I have my own life, and then we have a life together, which means respecting each other’s spaces and friends. I don’t like the fact that they are treating her in a negative way, but she’s been friends with these women for so long, so maybe they have a sibling-type relationship where they’re just honest with each other in a way that someone on the outside would perceive as being rude. If you feel uncomfortable hanging out with them, then don’t! But you need to respect her relationship with her friends, even if you don’t understand it.

For Sangita’s advice on a parent whose daughter wants to sell their Taylor Swift tickets, click here.

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