Social Etiquette and Good Manners/My father and my ex inlaws


Please provide me with clarity on the situation below.
I was marries to my ex for 8 years. During this time my father occationally spoke to my father and mother in law, never visited them. 5 years into the marrage things became bad. After a protection order things did not improve. I got divorced.  My father tried to help my ex more than me and the 2 kids from this marriage.  
I remarried a few years after. (beem married for 2years now). My ex still call my father dad and my father has no problem. My father still phone my ex mother and father inlaw. He even still borrows them money (something I never even asked for, although I went to bed hungrey a few times after the divorce).

I feel hurt and backstabbed. I raised this with him and he is not validating my point, nor changing his actions. My (now) husband is basically ignored. as well as his family. I asked my fater if he thinks it might cause my husband some uncomfortable ness when my ex referres to him as dad? (via sms, to pick up kids for the weekend , if he did not got hold of my via my phone. Ex sms dad and dad send through to my and hubbies phones. as if this will make communication go faster...)

Am I over sensitive? Am I selfish to expext that all ties should have been cut or at least faded? And that he should have made an effort with my husband, and equally importantly me?

An objective frame of reference will be highly appreciated.

Dear User5.5:

When two families come together through marriage, everyone in the family bonds (or doesn't) in their own way and to their own benefit.  Your Father connected with your in-laws and husband because he likes them and they fulfill a need he has.  He isn't choosing them over you.  His relationship with them has nothing in his mind to do with you which is why he isn't breaking off ties.

What concerns me is that your father has not kept as close a relationship with you and his grandchildren.  Without knowing your father, I can't speculate why.  My suggestion is to offer opportunities for your father and his grandchildren to be together and with time that may spark a closer bond with you and your current husband.  In the meantime, keep your civilities with him - be as nice as you can to him, especially in front of your children.  For your sanity, keep your distance from your father as much as civilly possible and concentrate on your children and your new husband.  Forget about your previous in-laws. They aren't part of your family anymore unless you want them there.  Your Father wants them in his life - that's his choice and his life.  You just do what is best for you and your children.

Social Etiquette and Good Manners

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Cynthia W. Lett


Proper manners with friends,family,colleagues,neighbors and everyone else you know.


I have been an etiquette expert teaching and consulting on the subject worldwide since 1983. I started and serve as the Executive Director of the International Society of Protocol & Etiquette Professionals and am considered a leader in the field of etiquette and protocol training and execution. I edited "Etiquette for Dummies" and have recently written "Lett's Talk - Everyday Etiquette Dilemmas and What to Do about Them". My book, "That's So Annoying:An Etiquette Expert on the World's Most Irritating Habits And What To Do About Them" was published in 2009 and is available wherever books are sold. I taught the Business Protocol class to Master's level students at the George Washington University, Washington, DC for seven years I served as Chief of Protocol for MCI Telecommunications for three years.

International Society of Protocol & Etiquette Professionals, ASTD, PCMA, National Speakers Association

I have been quoted over 700 times in the past 5 years worldwide. Publications include Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Washington Times, NY Times, Washington Business Journal, USA Today, Associated Press, London Times, Newsweek Japan edition, Newsweek US edition and many many more.

I am a Certified Etiquette Professional (CEP) and Certified Protocol Professional (CPP) earned by examination through ISPEP. I have a Master's degree in hospitality law and undergrad degrees in Restaurant & Hotel Management and Public Relations/Interpersonal Communications from Purdue University.

Awards and Honors
Who's Who Worldwide,Who's Who of American Women, Distinguished Darden Professor (Purdue University).

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