Frustrated Fiance'

by Ann
(Green Bay, WI)

I'm 50 who moved in with my fiance' 7 years ago. I left my siblings & extended family including my adult daughter 3 hours away in my home town.


My Greek fiance has 2 married brothers only a couple years younger, who have 3 kids. The baby brother has 2 grade school kids whose wife is a stay-at-home mom. All the men work full time outside the home as does the other wife. I work full time in a big box retail job earning only $9.00hr. I work full time days & weekends starting @ 6am and work nights on occasion.

I have a flex schedule only BEFORE the schedule is posted. I also have rheumatoid arthritis with cognitive difficulty which hampers my ability to become a manager earning much more money working occasional 3rd shifts, MORE stressful 50+ hours/week sometimes alternating between two stores.

We live in a large Midwest city. The brothers and their widowed mom live in a suburb 1/2 hour away.

The mom is 74, speaks very little English, has vertigo & bad arthritis using a walker, doesn't drive, lives alone in her own home with only one great younger single neighbor who works full time.

The 2 brothers' families live 5 minutes away from their mother & everyone drives. The other "kids" take turns taking their mom shopping, picking up her medications, decorating for the holidays & OCCASIONALLY meet the plumber etc. at the house since they can help translate in Greek what she can't communicate in English.

My fiance does just about everything else. Every other week he goes to his mothers' & handles all her mail & bills, makes all phone calls, arranges for the lawn, snow care & any other care needed for the home, does her taxes & arranges & takes her to her eye, dental & doctor appointments.

Our problem ... Since my fiance works out of the city he can't always take his mother to some of her appointments. She's had surgery 2 times in the last 4 years. Between the surgeries, pre-op appointments and yearly physicals I have had to take her to her appointments 5 different times including leaving work two times.

I earn the least out of all of us, I am not married & yet in the last 7 years I don't remember ANYONE else taking her to any appointment.

The others think they do plenty for her with the shopping but since the other brothers are married I feel the wives should be expected to help out once in a while if the other guys can't.

I truly love their mother but I feel this is an unfair situation that I can NOT afford but it's "not my place" to say anything since after all ... we are not married.

Please help with any opinions. Thank you.

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Frustrated Fiance' got Through the Holidays
by: Ann

Our long engagement has nothing to do with his family but more due to the economy and my rheumatoid arthritis and the fact that I would lose my small amount of financial assistance for my medical bills.

I was trying to find suggestions on how I could get my fiances other siblings to help out WITHOUT causing hard feelings OR causing any hurt to his mom. If I didn't love her so much I wouldn't have agreed to help her out in the first place.

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Sorry but.......
by: Anonymous

I'm really sorry to throw a spanner in the works here, but if you feel it's not your place to speak up when you are expected to help out this family who you are not 'related' to, how would it be different if you were married? Is it possible that your long engagement is dependent on you picking up the slack?

You clearly resent being the one who has to do what the family can't or won't do, so why are you doing it? take a step back, if the others step in then that's great, if they don't, then they are all abusing you and it's time to rethink your options!

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