No one should be in the situation of choosing between family and their boyfriend or girlfriend, but sometimes life is unfair, and you have to decide.
When we talk about family, it is mostly about parents, but it can also be about siblings or other relatives.
In this article, I will talk about different situations and what “choosing” means since it can be just a decision to spend more time with one of them, or it can be a huge decision not to see them anymore.
This is just my opinion and some thoughts from other people, but it is not professional advice, so you have to think about your situation for yourself before making any decision. We have different ideas about what the relationship with our family and significant other should look like.
Choosing between family and girlfriend/boyfriend
Choosing between family and partner might seem a no-brainer for most people, and they would tell you to choose your family, but this is not as easy of a decision as it might look like since, with your partner, you might spend the rest of your life from now on. I know family is family, but not all families are the same, and not all are worth losing your relationship for, so let’s consider a few rational things regarding this situation.
When choosing between family and boyfriend or girlfriend, a big factor to pay attention to is who is forcing you to make such a decision since, most probably, that person is a bit toxic to you.
Your life partner should never put you in this situation, there are many situations in which distancing yourself from your family might be a good idea for you, but only you can take this decision, and no one should force you.
When it comes to parents or family forcing you to choose between them or your partner, it might be that they are protective and want the best for you. However, this is not a thing they should force, you have to discover on your own what is best for you.
One very important thing here is that no one knows your partner and relationship better than you do. They might see some signs of a bad relationship, but they don’t know the whole story and why it is like that. And the fact that most people like to complain a lot about their relationship doesn’t help at all in this situation, and you might end up with your family thinking that the relationship is bad for you, but you tell them only your story, not the whole story.
They might be right, and you are in a bad relationship but them forcing you to choose will make you uncomfortable and irrational, so it will not help, and they should know better. On top of that, you learn new things and develop yourself in every relationship.
We tend to think that we know who is a good partner for our friends and family, but we don’t, and most of the time, we overestimate the person we know and underestimate the new person.
That being said, no one knows when you have a bad relationship or a bad family better than you, so they should not force you to make this decision.
What can you do when someone is forcing you to choose?
The first thing you should do when you are in this situation is to talk to them and see what they actually know about the other person and why they think you have to choose between them.
You might be surprised to see how superficial and not accurate the problem in their head might be.
Only then can you talk about how you see those things and why you don’t want to be put in this situation again.
If what they say about the other person aligns with what you think as well, then you might think twice about why you are in that relationship or why you keep so close to the family.
What does “choosing” means?
This is an important distinction since there might be some differences here. Choosing between them might mean that you should spend less time with one or another, which might be the case for most people in a relationship, or it might mean that someone is forcing you not to see the other person at all, which makes things way more complicated.
Most of us choose to spend less time with family when we are in a stable relationship since we have to spend more time with our significant other from now on. It might not be a conscious decision, but time is limited.
This happens with friends as well, we usually spend less time with friends while in a relationship. It is ok, and you have to set some boundaries with your parents and with friends while in a relationship.
But that doesn’t mean that you choose one or the other, but rather you spend your time differently because you are in a different life stage.
In those situations, it can happen one of the two things:
- Your parents/family will be possessive and don’t understand that you have to spend time with your significant other, which sometimes might be the time you would’ve spent with them.
- Your partner is possessive and doesn’t understand that you still have to spend time with family and friends. Or you don’t accept that you might have to cut back on time spent with family and friends, and your partner feels like you don’t pay enough attention to the relationship.
Life stage matters
When it comes to this decision, the life stage, you are in matters. We talk about boyfriend or girlfriend here, so I would assume that most people who read this are young, unmarried, and without kids.
When your partner or family is forcing you to decide between them when you are young, it might be a temporary decision that might be fixable in the future if you make the wrong decision. It is not always the case, but usually, people around you should understand that you are not mature enough to make such a decision, and time will change those things.
When it comes to the first relationship, some parents don’t understand that the situation is changed and you have someone else you care for and spend time with, and they might feel like you are deciding between them and your partner. Yea, it’s not a healthy mentality, but we are emotional human beings, and it is what it is. With time passing, this situation might change as well, it is the first time in this situation for them as much as it is for you.
The situation is more complicated when we talk about a long relationship with kids involved, and someone makes you decide. I discussed this in the article about who is more important, wife/husband or parents.
Read Also: 5 Signs Your Friends Are Needy
No one should be put in the situation of choosing between family and a partner, and the fact that someone has the audacity to tell you to do this is already a red flag, no matter if they are your family.
You should not make an important decision like this one under pressure because someone is forcing you.