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Me and my boyfriend of 1.5 years just got a puppy together and it hasn’t been easy. During the holidays we are all staying in his family’s place with the puppy and our relationship has definitely changed - the puppy blues, living his family have overwhelmed me and I’m thinking about breaking up... how do I know if this is the right decision? I love him very much but his family makes me feel excluded and the puppy has exposed a lot of problems in us...

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You’re his gf not his wife. You do not have to stay with his family. Take the pup and go home or to you family’s spot.

As a wife I don’t even like staying in my in-laws place. Stayed for 4-5 days once. #ishwaspainful #neveragain


OMG - I can't even stay with my own family for 5 weeks without losing it. No wonder you're so stressed out and having breakdowns. Also, having a puppy is definitely adding to the situation, not just because of barking and people having a bad attitude, but because you can't sleep well when they're really little. They're like newborns when you first get them.

I wouldn't break up just yet over these things because it sounds like your bf is genuinely trying to help, but I strongly recommend when you go see family that you stay in a hotel. Maybe even move into a hotel for the next few days. Having two privacy and a break from people can be such a help. This is what I've done for years at this point because I can't spend that much time with family without wanting to tear my hair out.


What kind of problems has the puppy brought out?


Mostly it’s with his family honestly. His family initially were inviting all of us over but then later on I realize they actually have very low tolerance of the dog barking. One time his mom was waken up by the dogs barking and she was really mean to be that morning..

That sounds like a lot all at once, and understandable that you'd feel like walking.

To his family - give them time, if possible. Its always hard to bring the new person in, and hopefully they aren't being horrid, just a little bit... close family to finally see each other at the holiday. My in laws used the "you formal" with me for 5+ years, and in part due to the culture really kept me at arms length. But I'm part of the family now.

More important is how your boyfriend is treating you. Have you raised the issue yet? "I know you're happy to be home and you are close with your family, but I'm feeling a bit odd man out. Is there something I can do to engage a little bit more?" Etc - accusing him of neglecting you won't help. And if he's a mommas boy and has suddenly turned into mr "let the women do it" but isn't like that at home - keep in mind we all divert into these family roles even if they don't fit who we are. It takes patience and nerves of steel. You can do it! 😊


Damn kudos to you for staying 5 weeks with your bf’s family. We are literally only staying 1.5 days this year cuz we both kind of agreed after a couple days even my bf gets a bit antsy. He used to stay for a week but given my discomfort being with his family for so long and also the lack of his other relatives being there to take some of the attention away from us, we have shortened our stays.

Given your bf seems to be taking your side and supporting you and the puppy has exposed problems with his family, not him, I don’t think you guys need to break up. You’re in a relationship with him, not the family. However, I agree with others in saying maybe head home after Christmas. If you flew to wherever you are, maybe just stay through NYE for the 2 week quarantine period then head back. But if you drove, leave the 26th and call it a day. My puppy and bf would be coming first in this situation. Good luck!


Not sure how old you are but if you want to have kids one day, not being able to deal with a puppy together is not a great sign to be honest


Once tou live on your own, going back to live with any family can be overwhelming. Don't break up with someone over family though... And the issues you have with your bf well sit and think if there a solution :) if no then well, you will both have to decide how to handle the puppy situation but things always work out. We are consultants, we literally get paid to solve problems... Cheers OP !!!


Awww thanks for your words. Reading it really helps me put things in perspective. We ARE consultants are we solve problems! Not running away from them! Cheers


If things like hitting the puppy, screaming, neglecting, that should raise some alarm bells. If irresponsibility/expecting you to do a disproportionate share of the work, it’s an opportunity to have a big conversation and see how he responds to the feedback (with his actions).
I agree with other commenters on the in-law situation.


Hang in there! In laws are tough even once you’re married, so even tougher when mom thinks of you as the girlfriend. Puppies are also tough as are the puppy blues! My hub and I got a pup in April and there have been ups and downs in terms for of how responsible each of us “should be” compared to reality. I would definitely say that you get what you put in with the pup, so keep up your training and reinforcement with them and things will get better! They’re babies at the end of the day and if you’re doing all you can to take care and reinforce good behavior then just roll with the punches from in laws as best as you can and remind yourself you can leave if you’re feeling too distressed but you’re choosing to stay. Not sure if the in laws have animals, or have had, but potentially you could try bonding with mom by asking how she would deal with the issue, might help her reframe. Good luck dear!


When I go home, I typically go for 9 days (weekend, full week, weekend) to maximize time with my family (and time for my son with his cousins). My husband refuses to go that long, and I respect that. This year he’s flying in Christmas Eve and we will leave together on Sunday, so his visit is less than 72 hours. And we both get what we want.
It seems like you’re at the end of your 5 week visit, so understand why you want to leave now. If you do decide to stick it out for the next 5 days, I definitely think it’s reasonable to make some type of arrangement that works for both of you in the future.


We also have done this long before we were married and had kids. Additionally, I do at least 1 vacation with my family per year, and I always give him the option to go or not go. He typically has declined to go in the past, but recently mentioned he regretted not coming with us last year. Now he’s suggesting locations for us to consider next year and plans to come to with us!

Thank you for this suggestion! I think lesson learned is that I could only take his family is small doses... 5 weeks is a long time (longest 5 weeks in my life)


The holidays are just starting...how long have you been there? I think you should look for an excuse to leave early, give yourself a break then work on the relationship with the bf


We’ve been here for 4 weeks and I’m reaching my breaking point lmao..
I think maybe we will just leave right after the holidays.. I’m counting down

Why don’t you go back to your own house with the puppy while he stays there?

I wish I could :( my family lives outside of the US and I have nowhere to go... maybe in hindsight I should have just stayed in nyc where our apartment is


Think of it from the parents perspective- If I had a barking puppy staying in my house, brought in by 2 additional people living with me, I would go insane. That is too much on his family, who have graciously taken You in plus a loud, badly behaving puppy. This is not going to end well for you. You need to move out, either leave the puppy there (and it will keep barking, sounds like- NEEDS TRAINING as puppies do not need to be barking) and then parents will know it’s not your fault the dog was barking. Or take the puppy. But get out. They will resent you and you them.

If you don’t move out on your own, my guess is that you will asked to leave soon. Which will irreparably harm your relationship with bf and family. Be courteous- get the damned dog out of there! (And I say this as someone who likes dogs but our dog, even as a puppy, does not make a sound. That is trainable).

I get fired up just thinking about this! I feel like your bf and you are taking advantage of the parents!! I am surprised that the mother is only just crabby. I would have more choice words for this situation. It would reflect on you, unfortunately, and not their son.

Clearly, I am in “the parent” category here but I start to get upset just thinking about this situation!! So go, just go- to salvage what is left of your relationship! I am not sure why you went there for 5 weeks in the first place. And not sure why they allowed it.

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