I know I’m in a grown up relationship because my in-laws hate me.
A tattooed, working-class, single-mom, shiksa isn’t good enough for a boy from an affluent neighbourhood? OK this isn’t exactly breaking news. It still sucks though. The thing is I thought I got away with it. That my dirt-under-my-nails thrift-store-clothes wearing self could be amongst the upper middle class. I manage to get paid to write (in a feast or famine kind of way) in a competitive industry, and I do well at school. My daughter is a people pleaser. I am very shy but I fancy myself as polite. And I clean up nice and I’m articulate and junk. I also do things like try for eight months to find an evening where my partner is home and both our parents can meet for a fancy dinner. Once the date is set I’m the kind of girl to plan every detail for a month. I’m the kind of girl that hates cleaning but scrubbed her apartment floors on hands and knees- for eight fucking hours. I was stupid enough to think the evening went well. Having social anxiety, I was stressed and sad after everyone left. I figured these feelings were just my health acting up, not the sense that something wrong happened that night. Like, it could be used as a reason to finally prove how awful of a human being I am. Impossible, I set out crystal!
His parents told my partner some pretty nasty stuff about me. Really bad, my heart is broken kind of stuff. I’ve been crying for a month kind of stuff.
In-laws aren’t supposed to like you. It is what sitcoms are made of, and I like to think I’m a funny gal. But holy fuck. Those feelings of self-doubt becoming actualized, real, spoken out loud …
And I can say, fuck them. I can say I don’t care. But I do care. I want to create and nurture a strong family. I am not cool enough to let these vile things said about me roll off my back. I wish I was.
Maybe I’ll get a TV deal: My Big Fat Dirty Poor Shiksa Wedding.