Should You Break Up With Someone Because of Their Parents?

Updated on October 31, 2016

Breaking up with someone you still love is one of the most painful things to go through in life. Many have asked "Why would you break up with someone if you still love them?" I was one of them, when I was younger.

But since I have gotten older, and had enough relationship experience to make any girl go crazy, I have learned a few lessons. I know now that loving someone does not mean you are compatible. It may sound sad, but love is not the only thing needed to sustain a relationship. Sometimes issues get in the way such as trust issues, jobs, college, friends,

That may be no surprise to some, and a total shocker for others. But sometimes in a relationship, you find yourself thinking of ending things because of their family. In this situation, I found that there are some key questions to ask yourself.

Do Their Parents Like You?

Mostly, I thought this question only pertained to high schoolers because of the parents' ability to prevent you from dating certain people. I feel I have been pretty lucky because my father never, ever told me who I could and could not date. He has always been pleasant to anyone I dated, no matter how they looked or what he actually thought of them. He has always let me make my own choices...and therefore my own mistakes.

So when I began a relationship with a man whose mother refused to admit he was 22 and not 12, I was completely beside myself with confusion and frustration. I know now that I was not the only to experience this. It is actually quite common, especially when you date an only child. I'm willing to bet that a large majority of those who will read this have experienced this, or are experiencing it now.

When you have a parent or both that refuse to admit their son or daughter has grown up, it becomes about ten times more important that they like you than in normal dating circumstances. Sure, at some point in any serious relationship, it becomes pretty important that their parents at least ACCEPT you, and life is much easier when they like you. But when an overbearing parent doesn't like you, the relationship can be doomed.

Would you break up with someone because of their parents?

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More Importantly, Do You Like Their Parents?

It sounds very harsh to say that this is more important, but let's be brutally honest. How easy is a relationship when you can't stand each other's parents? It doesn't really matter what your reasons for hating them are. Any husband or wife that loathes their in-laws will tell you that holidays are miserable, your blood level spikes whenever they call, and you become a genuis at finding reasons NOT to visit them.

So if you know you can't stand them in the dating phase, why would you devote your life to that sort of stress and misery? The answer for many is love. You will do it because you are in love with your partner. You will take one for the team and become a martyr for that love. The problem is, how long do you think it will take before fights and resent ment arise because of your strained relationship with his or her parents? If they love their parents, they will begin to resent you for not feeling the same, or for trying to pull them apart. And you will begin to resent them because you will constantly find that you come second to their parents in any disagreement.

Think about things like this, and whether you'd rather end the relationship on good terms now.....or horrible ones in several years.

Tips for Meeting the Parents

Is There Hope?

If you've made it this far, thank you. I'm aware that a lot of what is written here makes me seem like a jaded, bitter crone with no hope at all. But the truth is, some situations do have hope for improvement. But improvement requires a compromise on everyone's part. You, your significant other, and his parents need to be able to find middle ground for thins to get any better. The one thing you all have in common is: you love him/her. That is a place to start, but it is not the only needed agreement.

It is difficult to get everyone to come to agreeable terms when one or more parties refuses to see everyone's perspective. You need to understand that you are dating someone's baby, and they only want to protect their child from getting hurt, and to see them prosper. Their ways of showing that might be crazy, but the intent is a good one. They need to see that you love their child for who they are, and want to share in their joy and happiness while you are together. And your significant other needs to be able to see that they can not take sides in order to keep peace.

Consider for a moment that a situation like this is probably hardest on the one you're dating. They have two or three people they love, but no one can get along and they don't know whose side to choose.

Who Do You REALLY Have a Problem With?

I can tell you that the relationship with I spoke of ended. I finally decided I could not take a mother that actually gave her son money just so he would take her side of a disagreement. Or that's what my reason was at the time, anyway. But as time went on, I realized that what I actually couldn't handle was dating a man who could be so easily bribed and manipulated.

Many times, you spend weeks, months, or even years raging about how much you can't stand a person's family, and never even realize that's not the whole truth. Many times, your biggest problem is the behavior your significant other has that allows his or her family to continue acting that way. This is a very hard reality to face, but one that is all too often true.

In the end, the choice is yours. You need to decide what will make you happy and keep your sanity.



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      ConfusedandNeedingHelp 7 weeks ago

      My bf and I have been dating for nearly a year. I met his parents after 3-4 months after dating. I was really hesitant to do so since his parents are extremely religious and I’m not at all. Also he’s the baby boy and anytime we were hanging out his mom would blow his phone up. Long story short I finally met them and it was fine and they seemed to really like me. Later on he was going through a custody battle and figuring out if it was his or not and finally all that was over and I stayed with him and supported him right along with his parents. Then his mom showed her colors. Started going to get the child behind his back and when it was his time to get the child she’s throw a fit if he didn’t take the child immediately out there. And a lot of stuff happened that I won’t post but let’s just say after a month of non-stop drama she hurt my bf beyond what I could imagine. I love him so much and I want to be there for him but with all this my parents don’t want him around and I feel like I’m having to give up everything because of his mother. M

    • profile image

      It doesnt matter 8 weeks ago

      I am going through a similar situation. My boyfriend he is the only child. It is very annoying. Because his mom and aunt depends on him. And everything its just him. Whenever we fight, even if i am right. I will be always wrong because to his family he is a perfecf child. Everytime we go out his mom calls to ask “ where are you” or “what time are you coming home” I understand a mother wouldn’t want to loose their only child but it is very annoying because she treats him like a child. He is 24 years old. I don’t like his mom, at first I thought i could put up with it but now it’s becoming so overwhelming. I just found out shes been talking shit about me to some of his family. I am thinking about leaving, i am at the point i am ready to brake up but at the same time I dont want to because i love him. What i hate the most is that, if he could work the whole day, 7 days straight he would and he wouldn’t care about spending any times with me. He said his family and responsibilities comes first. What about me?! Am i not family?? We barely spend time together. I am so lost, i dont know what else to do. Last time we fought, her mother told me “ you can continue doing this because he has a lot responsibility” but it was his fault. He did something that was rude and disrespectful, I didn’t like it at all.

    • profile image

      Jade 3 months ago

      my bfs parents dont allow him to date should break up w/ him?

    • profile image

      Sab 3 months ago

      I like this article. There is a young woman that I alway cared about but because of her friends who were my friends and her father I can’t find myself being with her. I thought I was being too harsh but I guess I am not. I don’t think she realizes that her dad makes her undateable. He’s always in the background doing something and I don’t like manipulative people. My thing is that if you feel no one isn’t good enough for your daughter then don’t let her date. The crazy part about it is that if I’m not mistaken she 25 years old. It’s kind of sad but my privacy is way more important. Also, I’m very protective of my family and her family likes to have round table talk about things and I would be violently pissed if one of them have something to say about anyone in my family. I would love it if I could see her family the same way I did because I thought that they were genuine people but hey shit happens.

    • profile image

      What's there in the name 5 months ago

      Thanks!! For such articles existing over internet, my ex could have taken the decision to leave me so easily.

    • profile image

      hill 7 months ago

      my bf's family is so incredibly toxic, they keep begging him for money, while he is only getting paid 11 dollars p/h. His dad even quit his job for no reason and is now leeching off of him and his older brother. My bf has a lot of things to pay for, one of the things is a 40k car because his mother made (yes, MADE) him buy it. Worst of all is his dad, who used to beat my bf up with a belt and even sexually assaulted me. My bf hates him, but sees him as his father and so, still feels obligated to stay in touch with him. I have never hated anyone as much as I hate this family. All they do is treat their sons as slaves, yelling at them and always making them pay for stuff, while they treat their daughter as a princess, never making her pay or do anything in the house. The sister is even bossing her brothers around and telling them they need to pay more (she doesn't pay a thing) and they need to love their parents more. I can not bare the idea to have them around for my entire life, but I love my boyfriend a lot.. I have thought about breaking up with him because of it, but it's not like he doesn't think of his family as a pain in the ass. He just doesn't want to feel guilty when they die that he wasn't there for them. I really feel like he should go to a freaking shrink, just to learn what's normal and what is not in a family. He has 0 communication skills, because he was never taught to speak his mind, or even what love is. The parents think their sons are owing them, because they paid for their school etc. It was their choice to even have kids, what the fuck.. Either way, I can rant about them for hours straight, they pulled a lot more of these fucking tricks.

    • profile image

      9 months ago

      Okay, I dunno, if there is a serious problem, but here goes. My boyfriend and I are in a long-distance rlationship. We want to get married soon. His parents know that and they don't seem to have any opinion about it.

      I like them - or used to - until they became weird. I was planning to stay somewhere with my boyfriend and they just got all up in our faces how that wouldn't be appropriate. 3 weeks before the flippin' trip. They made preparations to send his sister after him and whatnot. I stopped that, made another arrangement to keep them happy (which cost about 3 times as much, but they have money so they apparently never even thought about that. Oh yeah, I never saw any of that money. Also they were so disrespectfully in telling me about that and "how irresponsibly" I had planned).

      His mother is often acting weird, borderline trying to gaslight both of us, saying she never said any hurtful things blah blah. I just get so irrationally angry how oblivious they are to the fact that I don't have as much cash as they do and that some things and trips need... oh wonder, planning!

      Then they are super nice to my face again. I hate this two-facedness so much. If they have a problem they should come to me and straight up tell me, that's how I deal with problems. They apparently would rather spread lies and gossip and backtab.

      whatever. I told my boyfriend that I'm not dealing with this shit anymore and it's up to him to deal with them.

      Oh, did I mention they have been indicating things like I wa dull (because I'm German), I'm a slut (yeah, sure. A dull slut.) and my boyfriend would be so much better off with another girl they apparently like better. Also, he is too young to marry, but there must be something wrong with me because I am already 21 and not married yet.

      I've given up on it. I'll be friendly, but I won't trust them.

    • profile image

      Jenna 9 months ago

      My boyfriends mother does not like me and I never feel welcome in her house. She doesn't say hello to me and barely even looks at me.. We have been together for 2 and a half years now and I thought things would get better but they aren't. Things have actually gotten worse. My boyfriends father (who lives all the way across the country) has also said some choice words about me. He told my boyfriend " you need to break up with that girlfriend of yours" all because of a minor argument that my boyfriend had with his mother that had nothing to do with me. Then just recently my boyfriend has been having some groin pain caused by an injury. Well his father took that the completely wrong way and said to my boyfriend over the phone "you better go get checked because she might have given you an STD". Im devastated that his father would say something like that about me. Its disgusting and I'm really upset about this. My boyfriend did try to defend me but I don't know how much longer I can put up with this disrespect from his parents. What should I do?

    • profile image

      tulika srivastava 13 months ago

      i recently break up with a GUY just because i find that it was not the rigth time for me to be in any kind of relationship...and my parents are untolerable to these stuffs.and as becoz they came to know ..but he was not ready to leave me at all in any condition .....but i thought in coming days it will be like a burden for me..... was this right?

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      Sad 15 months ago

      Dated my ex-fiancè for 6 years, we were set to get married in April this year. MIL took over all wedding arrangements and even chose people she approves of to surround me on the wedding day. My ex-SIL and her chose our wedding invitations without me. My ex did nothing about it even though I complained. He couldn't be bothered as long as "things were sorted out". Funniest (or most awkward) part is that I'm still living on their property (I promised my ex that I would try living with his parents). He couldn't even discuss how uncomfortable I am due to their meddling and "suggestions" on how I should live my life. FIL wants remt from me now. The reason I can't move out is because I am paying the bond on a house my ex and I were going to move into if I fell pregnant after the wedding. He looked for this house after we had an argument relating to living with his parents, he did this to save our relationship. He quit two jobs and stays home everyday searching for a clue on what he should be doing with his life. He has looked after his alcoholic father and narcissistic mother from the time he was a teenager. He's also paid for his sister's pricey education (she failed her degree thrice). He can't live without them and refuses to move out. His mother and sister are extremely pleased that we are on a break. I have always put him first, with the result that my career and social life have suffered. He began controlling me and tried to manipulate me emotionally like his mother and sister would as well. I feel that it's time to give him space to grow and figure out what he wants from life. I need to do the same. I love him very, very much but we are toxic towards each other and we need this time apart. I feel like an idiot because I still hope that he finds me one day, and we get together again, as two "whole" individuals with more to give each other than broken promises and resentment.

    • profile image

      Theone 15 months ago

      Caro. You are not crazy. Some guys can't say no to their mothers they are too weak and the mothers know how to easily manipulate them. It sad. I'm in the same situation. His mom is so fake with me. She has insulted me and my family to my face told me I will not allow you steel my son and other stuff. She has given me weird looks, but when he is around she compliments me. He doesn't take my side. She is so fake I can't stand her. This is affecting our relationship.

    • profile image

      Caro 18 months ago

      My boyfriend of 5 years mom is crazy!

      she drinks a lot and is always putting me do, she consistently has me in tears and my boyfriend is always apologising to her and buying her flowers like she's his girlfriend and I'm the bully.

      Am I being crazy or is that just weird?

    • profile image

      AMom1 2 years ago

      I know this is an old thread but for anyone maybe in the same boat- Sadly my 18 year old is going through this. He has dated this girl for over a year exclusively and they just adore each other. Reminds me of my spouse and I at that age. She is wonderful I admit. Everything about her is great. She is nice, Christian, does not smoke, drink or do drugs. She is respectful and watches out for my son. Almost as though I knew right off this was going to be my daughter in law someday. Sounds strange but she fit in that well with our family. BUT my son broke up with her because of her parents. She is 17. He asked their permission to continue to date her when he neared 18. Laws here says it is ok but he asked out of respect for them and her. The problem is they are crazy. They do drugs we discovered, they saddle my son with baby sitting their other 3 small children when ever he goes to visit they just leave no matter if the two kids already had plans. They even tried to talk my son into driving one of their toddlers around in his car with no seat belt then when he protested for safety concerns the parents just said well we will pay the ticket. WTH??? I finally approached him do to safety concerns as I suspected the parents were the cause of his growing anxiety. He soon after broke up with the girl in a respectful way (not telling her of course it was her parents really, he just said with college getting his bachelors and working that 12-15 hours a day and weekends it is to hard to see her and it is not fair to her to just stay waiting around for him) but he never really wanted to break it off nor did she. It is so sad and I have cried a lot because it seems this girls psychologically abusive family has made it to where this poor girl is a shut in, home schooled and they push everyone away. She pays for it. Literally she has no friends do to them. My son and her met at a Christian camp and have on their own continued with church, volunteering etc. until the break up. What is a person to do in this situation??? We all adore her but to think of that other family as possibly grandparents one day scares us all to death. Good grief it is so disheartening to leave this girl behind with her family on a one way ticket to destruction because she is not like that at all and wants to be different. Wants a different life style and wishes so badly her Mom was like me.

      Any suggestions welcomed.

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      Sam 2 years ago

      This article was pretty helpful - it made me feel not so alone, at least. I've been dating my boyfriend for 4 years, and though we don't live near his family, I dread the holidays every year. His mom is fantastic, but almost everyone else just sucks; they're people with whom I would not normally associate. I find them uneducated and spoiled. My boyfriend thankfully acts most like his mom, so he's nice and easy-going. I know I have to go to these things because I love him and tolerating his family is part of that, but I wish he came from a better background.

    • profile image

      mou 2 years ago

      We are in a relation of 4yrs... just a week before he broke d relation because of his family...

    • profile image

      Eyda 3 years ago

      What if i love my partner but my parent doesn't give a permision to see him meet him or dating?

    • profile image

      Lindsay 4 years ago

      I am going through this right now, accept that I am on the other side of the argument, I am the one with problematic parents. I' 20 and he was 22. We just ended a 6 year relationship because my parents still did not trust him to the full :S it's so hard... still have to tell my parents about it....

    • profile image

      kayla 6 years ago

      i think this should help with my parents and his and all of us thank u for this article

    • ChrissyDean profile image

      ChrissyDean 7 years ago

      I don't believe you should have to be tested to prove you love your man to this extent. Imagine how much emotional and mental stress this adds to you, which is then transferred to your other half. It isn't a happy situation, and may end very badly if it goes to long. My suggestion is to try and find another place to go, if possible. I know it may not be..

    • profile image

      Emily 7 years ago

      What do you do if you happen to live with said infuriating in-laws? How much do I need to be tested to prove that I love my man?

    • profile image

      Anonymous 8 years ago

      It was a very good article.

    • profile image

      me 8 years ago

      thank you so much this helped so much my boyfriends parents are extremely crazy at this moment and we don't know what to do but we love each other and this tottaly helped me thank you.


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