Boyfriend Vs. Parents — Call in the Referee ‘Paging Pri’

relationship problems
Dear Pri,

My mom and I were really close, and over the years my relationship with her has changed. I’m 25-years-old, just graduated and embarking into my career life. I try to take life one step at a time and enjoy it as much as I can. The main problem of course comes down to a guy who I have been with for the past three years. My mom is not fond of him and her idea of the perfect guy for me is way different.

Initially in the beginning of the relationship, she told me to end it off before it got serious. Being a love crazy 21-year-old, I could not come to break it off with him, because he was so sweet and it felt good, and if my morals weren’t molded by my mother– it even felt right.

And now, trying to come clean about this relationship, my mom told me to either choose him or her. She said she is disappointed with my behaviors and thought I’d be a lot more practical. She even thinks I’m ruining the family name and shouted at me to the point where she wanted to disown me. My family ties are important and I’d be lost without them.

I had told them I would break it off with him and respect the family. However, this guy isn’t all that bad either, maybe not a hero to show off to the relatives or freaking rich. He is an awesome, funny and charming person, who has a professional job that he is building each day.

Finally, I could not come to break it off with this amazing person, because he does not believe it’s a good reason for us to break up, and a part of me can’t imagine going through a day without him.  As hopeless as it sounds, I am so depressed these days. Even my boyfriend feels insecure, but manages to support me all the time. I don’t want to break it off with him and I can’t let go of my family, even-though I’m so angry with them.

I’m in a dilemma, because I can no longer talk about this to them. They made me promise it’s over and they just won’t listen. I have no idea what to do. My plan was to continue with the lie and try to live happy, as long as I could.


Conflicted forever


Dear Conflicted Forever,

I’m very sorry to hear you are going through such a tough time at such a young age. Families being accepting of their children’s partner is always a sensitive subject, especially in the South Asian community.

Growing up as an Indian daughter, I can relate to the impact a family has on your love life. It’s very difficult to make everyone happy, and the truth is, no matter what you do, someone will be upset. What it really boils down to is, what is going to make you happy?

As drastic as this may seem, the person you marry is going to be your new family. This means, you create a family of your own, with your own kids (if you choose) and you begin a journey of your own.

Family is family at the end of the day. I don’t know how serious your mom is about disowning you if you choose to stay with this man, however, what I’m saying is, if you believe that you can make it work, while still having ties to your family, then follow your heart.

There is no right or wrong answer here. Love is a beautiful, yet scary emotion. You really have to ask yourself if this guy is worth sacrificing your family over? You also need to ask yourself if you are ready for that kind of commitment.

From what I gather, you are on the fence as to what to do. It sounds like you have already made your choice, of picking family, however, are you prepared to settle for someone that is not your idea of an ideal partner?

Also, ask yourself if you really love this man or if it’s the idea of him. Love can often be mistaken with infatuation. If you really love this guy, the answer is simple. You fight for love, and the rest will fall into place. Yes, family will always have an opinion, and I am not encouraging you to pick a guy over your family, I’m saying, true love happens once in a lifetime. If you really believe this guy is the one, then I’m sure that you can find a way to make it work for the two of you, and your family.

Ask yourself, what is it about him that my mother doesn’t approve of? Chances are, once you place yourself in your mother’s shoes, you may be able to see something that you never saw before.

john edwards

My advice to you would be to take a step back and look at things with a clear mind. Close your eyes, and really ask yourself, “what is going to make me happy?” You have the rest of your life to be conflicted, but you only get one chance at true love. Is this your true love? My guess would be, if you choose this guy, eventually your family will learn to accept and respect your choices as an adult. They will see that, you as an individual fought for what you believed in, and did not let other’s influence your decision.

If you have ever watched any Bollywood movies, this is a common theme you see in many of the storylines. Take the Bollywood classic “Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge” for example, starring Sharukh Khan and Kajol. Simran fell in love with Raj, knowing her parents, mainly her father, had a different dream for her. He had already predetermined her destiny by “promising” her off as a young child to his childhood friend’s son. Instead of settling for her father’s dream, she fought for what she believed in. Although it wasn’t an easy process, her family eventually came around.

I’m aware that this is a movie, and movies typically tend to have happy endings, but what’s to say that you can’t create your own happy ending?

Have you ever asked your mom how disowning you would benefit either of you? A mother losing a daughter is every mother’s worst nightmare, so I am certain that it is not as easy as she is playing it off to be.

I really hope you find the strength to follow what’s in your heart. Your heart will never lead you the wrong way. If you listen to your heart and think with your brain, you’ll always be one step ahead.

Good Luck and I hope it all works out,

-Paging Pri

Paging PriPri graduated from Texas Woman’s University with a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology. She is pursing her Master’s of Arts degree in professional counseling at Amberton University. Pri has over four- years of experience working with adults with severe mental health diagnosis’. Pri is very knowledgeable about the South Asian community and hopes to give insight to young women on a variety of topics, such as: relationships, culture, family life, personal concerns, etc. If you would like Paging Pri to answer your questions, please feel free to write to her at All submissions will be kept confidential.

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