4 Signs Your Partner's Parents Don't Trust You & How To Talk To Them About It
Having a friendly relationship with your partner's family can be an important part of keeping things between you and bae running smoothly. Unfortunately, getting the stamp of approval isn't always easy. Keeping an eye out for the signs your partner's parents don't trust you is definitely a good idea, especially if you're sensing strange vibes. Even though dealing with these types of situations can be tough, letting them fester could lead to bigger issues down the line.
I spoke to prominent relationship therapist Dr. Gary Brown about how you'll know if the trust between you and your partner's family could be improved. According to Dr. Brown, trust issues aren't always a reflection of anything you've done wrong. Sometimes, a lack of trust is connected to concerns or baggage from the past. "In some circumstances, it can be understandable why [your partner's parents] may be somewhat guarded and a bit untrusting in the beginning," Dr. Brown tells Elite Daily. "This is especially true if your partner has had prior relationships that did not end well for them." Let's face it, certain families can be tough to get close to, but putting in an effort to improve the situation can make a big difference. If your SO's parents display the following behavior, it might mean that they don't trust you yet.
1. They don't invite you to family events.
"This is a clear sign that they neither like nor trust you," says Dr. Brown. It's hardly a secret that being excluded can be very hurtful. That said, Dr. Brown warns against confronting their parents directly, if possibile.
"I highly recommend that you do not start a dialogue with their parents as your first tactic," suggests Dr. Brown. "Instead, this is a conversation you need to have with your partner so that they understand what your experience is."
2. They're cold or barely acknowledge you.
According to Dr. Brown, if your SO's family doesn't try to engage with you in a genuine way, this is also a sign that they aren't vibing. Plus, anyone who's ever experienced an icy mom glare knows that getting the cold shoulder is rough. Luckily, having an honest conversation with your partner could help clear things up.
"Try to find out if what you are feeling is really true," says Dr. Brown. "Do they really not trust you or are you just worried that they might not trust you when, in fact, they may?"
3. You're excluded from important matters or conversations.
"Being excluded from crucial conversations is a sign that they don't trust you and need to keep major secrets," explains Dr. Brown. Even though it can be tempting to assume that your partner's parents are the ones in the wrong, it's also important to consider whether any of their concerns are legitimate.
"Did you dominate conversations, betray their confidence, not help out, or treat your partner badly," asks Dr. Brown. "If any of these apply, this is an opportunity for you to build on your self-awareness of ways that you may be impacting people's ability to trust you."
4. They blame you.
No one wants to be blamed for things that aren't their fault. So, if your partner's parents think you're the reason their child isn't doing as well as they'd like, then that's definitely a problem. If discussing the issues with your partner hasn't helped, then having a conversation as a group may be another option.
"My recommendation would be to either talk with their parents in your partner's presence as a starter," recommends Dr. Brown. "If more is needed, you can also have individual conversations with them to see what can be done to build or restore trust."
Getting over trust issues can be hard, but if you want to maintain a solid relationship with your partner and their family then it's definitely important. Even if their parents aren't receptive, just the fact that you tried should communicate to your partner that you really care. Ultimately, having the support of family can be really helpful. Even if it takes a while to break down their walls, in the end, you'll be so glad you did.