The family trip turns into a cat roundup
Dear Amy: My partner and I recently traveled abroad with her family.
We are all adults. We spent six days with her mother, father, brother and sister-in-law.
We both knew that there would be the usual frustrations associated with spending time in close quarters with her enmeshed family.
We stayed in vacation rental homes, where each couple had their own room.
During our time abroad, it became apparent to both of us that her family's dynamics stifled our experience. Her mother and brother bickered for much of the time. In addition, her brother, who was very far removed from his comfort zone, complained endlessly about all sorts of things beyond anyone's control.
At one point I overheard him say to his wife, "I really, REALLY don't want to be here."
My partner's mother would constantly worry if we wanted to do anything on our own, and feared for our safety.
In an effort to respect her wishes, we stayed together as a group, but trying to get everyone to do the same thing in a given day was like herding bored house cats.
We aren't super-assertive, but the rest of the group was extremely passive.
My partner and I both decided that we do not wish to have any future experiences like this previous one.