When I spend time with my wife’s family, I feel at home. Her mom’s family, her dad’s family, it doesn’t matter. They’re all super welcoming and laid back (even the uptight ones), and I feel at ease.
At holidays where everybody gets together and I am put in a group of people whom I may have met once or twice, I feel super awkward. Especially when the relationship to the family is just barely there. With my family, it’s Parents, Siblings, Aunts, Uncles, Grandparents, and Cousins. That’s what qualifies as family.
With her it’s....everybody. Grandpa’s brother, her aunt’s aunt by marriage, brother’s uncle’s nephew’s cousin. Anybody and everybody can be counted as family, and to their face, they have to be treated like family. Even when everybody hates them. It’s all “shake hands and make nice”.
Add in the alcohol content and the fact that I only have one drink, maybe once or twice a year, and things get really weird.
Not that I’m complaining. I have no cause for complaints. I just don’t get it sometimes. Maybe the “family” portion of my brain is wired wrong. Lord knows I’ve got enough dysfunction in my family to share....