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How do you deal with relatives and friends who are jealous of your traveling?

How do you deal with relatives and friends who are jealous of your traveling?

Old Aug 19th, 2001, 01:48 AM
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How do you deal with relatives and friends who are jealous of your traveling?

One sad part (or difficult I should say) with travel is dealing with relatives or others who are jealous or nasty because we travel. My mother-in-law just **hates** that we travel and complains about it endlessly. She goes on and on about how we waste our money and how we should have had children to spend money on instead of wasting it on "something stupid" like trips.
She insists my husband call her every 3 days when we are on foreign trips and every night when we travel in the USA. She complains that we don't get her nice enough presents on our trip. She asks me over and over "what is wrong with your life that you want to escape it all the time"? It doesn't matter what I say, it never gets through to her. She also insists my husband take her on weekend trips without me at least twice a year (which he does) but even on those she's full of complaints about how he doesn't show her things that are as interesting as the things he and I see on our trips. I also have trouble with my 3 best friends with our trips.....one never mentions them and shows no interest in them no matter where we go so instead I listen to her talk about her crafts and we go to movies with no mention of our month in Sweden at all. Another friend seems to feel he must top any trip we take....so if we get back from 2 weeks in Bali then a month later he leaves for 3 weeks in Burma with a flood of postcards coming my way. This has happened every year for the past 8 years now. I wish I knew people I could talk to about travel like people on this board talk to each other. I listen to my friend above talk at great length about his trips but he has never asked me one thing about our trips.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 05:28 AM
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Make new friends. The current ones don't seem to be doing what "friends" do. Once you have the friends, ignoring the miseerable mother-in-law will be easier. Possible places to make friends who travel, or who are at least curious about others' travels: Take foreign language classes in adult school or night classes at local community college or "Greek school" at a Greek church or Chinese lessons at some Chinese culture club for teenge children of immigrants, do volunteer work in projects that attract either highly educated people or very "ethnic" types, take international folkdancing lessons &/or participate in a folkdance group, take photography classes in adult school, as a last resort move to a job with more intereting people &/or a town that may have more intereting people, and first and last, look at yout own behavior and change if needed.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 06:27 AM
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I received mostly positive comments about my recent trip but mostly because I was going "solo".
There were actually many people I did not tell about the trip and only mentioned it once I returned.
This saved me from some of those remarks.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 07:09 AM
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You have to be very careful when talking about your travels. Some people don't understand that it is like any other hobby or priority - you are just choosing to spend your money differently (ie. not on boats, cars, furniture, jewelry). With regards to your friend who talks about his travels but never asks about yours, I would show more of an interest and I bet he starts to become more interested in your trips. I know which of my relatives and friends appreciate and like to travel, and I talk about our plans and adventures with them. With the others, I only mention our travels when it is necessary or if they ask.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 07:25 AM
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your husband is letting his mother have too much control over your lives and needs to stand up to her. Unfortunately, only he can do that. I would NEVER take a parent away with me for a weekend who treated my spouse like that.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 07:57 AM
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YOU should continue to travel especially overseas while you are young and able too do so remeber that europe is not that ( handicapped accessible)if you know what I mean ! like here in the states you can explore the U.S. by bus in you latter years . Find new friends or have them travel with you. They may catch the travel fever like you guys did and could appreciate your travles more.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 08:28 AM
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Right on, Anna! Couldn't have said it better myself.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 08:48 AM
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We can't choose our family but we can choose our friends...

I wouldnt go as far as recommended you drop your current friends (though I would reevaluate what you get out of each relationship - as friendship should be a two way thing).

I would say get some new friends...

Few of my friends are into travel in the way that I am. Most do enjoy their annual holidays but are not obsessed as I am, nor do they spend the time researching that I do...

But nearly all show an interest in my travels not because they are really interested in the travel itself but because they are my friends and are interested in me... if it is something inportant to me, as they know it is, then it is important enough for them to ask about it.

Some just ask, and let me know they hope I enjoy the next trip, others might take it further and ask more about the trip, ask to see photos. But pretty much all are supportive of my passion...

Friendship is surely about accepting each other, supporting each other's needs and interests, and having fun. In my opinion it isnt about competing to out do one another, or about only sharing those parts of your lives where you have identical interests.

As for the MIL, hard to comment, but depending on how strongly you feel and how much it upsets you, it might be worth talking through this again iwht your husband, and stating how she makes you feel. As for the trips he takes her on without you - sounds to me it would be better for you to just enjoy that peaceful few days alone without them, as the only other solution is for you to join them!!!

I hope you can find some new friends to share your passion with, and remember you always have the friends on this board...

If an email friendship counts, feel free to make me an email pal, [email protected] - take out the MOOs.

Old Aug 19th, 2001, 09:56 AM
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While my friends ask about my upcoming trips, they aren't really interested in travel and don't share my passion. My husband and I wanted to expand our circle of friends to meet other couples who loved to travel. With this goal, my husband contacted the travel editor of our local paper and told him we wanted to start a travel group. The editor thought it was a good idea and mentioned it in the Sunday paper and we had 55 people at our first meeting. Our travel group meets every 6 weeks for a buffet lunch, socializing and a presentation about some aspect of traveling. The group has evolved into a smaller, more intimate group of about 30 people and it's been fun to share experiences with like minded people of all ages. In fact, we met several couples that we socialize with now and plan to travel with to Italy next year if all goes well. It's turned out to be alot of fun. Denise - maybe you could do something like this in your hometown. Also, if anyone reading this lives in South Florida (Broward County) and would like more information, please e-mail me. Karen
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 01:35 PM
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To the top!
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 01:46 PM
Marc David Miller
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The jealousy might come from the perception that overseas travel is only for the rich and that describing a journey to Italy or France might be akin to bragging to a person who thinks this way.

Some people might assume that you are staying in 5 star properties and eating 3 star meals every night. I remember not that many years ago visiting a relative in Paris--I was not getting along with him well and looked at several hotels to which I could escape if the need had arisen--and I was surprised by the quantity of nice, inexpensive accomodations, not just the Crillons and Ritzs that I perceived I would have to stay in.

I recently had a conversation with a person and stated that even 25 years ago going off to Europe was a rare experience for most Americans; with the decline of air fares in the early 1980s it became feasible for people of moderate means to fly to, say, London and spend the weekend for not much more than a long weekend in Florida. Some people don't realize this (just like some people consider long-distance phoning to be extravagant, and don't realize that the cost of a phone call is about 1/20 of what it was 20-30 years ago.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 01:48 PM
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Some of my friends are not interested in hearing alot about my travels and I am not interested in hearing alot about their kids. We are still good friends.
Maybe you listen too much.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 03:04 PM
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As with most things in my life I decide what things are worth my energy and which things aren't. If these are friends and family that you adore and want to keep in your life, I'd find out a little more about what is going on with them (except for your mother-in-law - I don't think her comments are about travelling at all. 'Solving' her/your problems are in a completely different category of effort). Sometimes friends/family are afraid that you will change if you travel - and you usually do - and then you won't want them around anymore. So they strike first, or feign indifference. When this happened to me I worked out a way for us to go on a trip together - it was only overnight and we had a ball. As we did more mini-holidaying together we had more to talk about, which influenced other friends, as well. Sometimes ppl are just not interested as the previous writer said, and that's fine. It's hard when you've seen/learned/experienced something incredible to realize that some people couldn't care less, but that's the way the world is (the analogy with hearing other people's children is a good one). Although I've often found with these people that they are still interested in 'new' experiences whether trying out a new restaurant, backpacking, spending a day in a used book store, wandering through showhomes - you can use this as the basis of great conversations about learning new things wherever they are. If they aren't people I adore/want to have in my life I don't worry about it. Life is way too short and there's a seat-sale to Jamaica leaving next Friday.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 03:10 PM
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No doubt you've got quite a burden with the MIL, but at least you can take comfort in the fact that a lot of the rest of humanity have annoying relatives as well, so welcome to the human race.

I've got two teens myself but I really take my hat off to you childfree couples out there who have to put up with the kind of comments and pressure your MIL is laying on. Just deal with it as best you can and, as other posters said, try to gravitate toward other travel minded people. At least you can hang out around here!

Old Aug 19th, 2001, 07:49 PM
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I have the opposite problem. My friends all want to hear about my travels and then they WANT TO GO WITH ME on the next trip. I have taken 3 trips with friends and had a good time but they don't travel they way I like to. They expect me to plan the entire trip, herd them like cattle from sight to sight, do all the driving, make all the reservations and keep them entertained. I don't mind doing this but two weeks of, "Okay, now that we've seen the Eiffel Tower, we're off to The Louvre and The Musee D'Orsay" gets a little tiring especially when I know none of them have any interests other than the usual tourist spots. I find myself wondering if I should have packed a floral parasol as we meander through Piazza San Marco. I won't even get into the little idiosyncracies that pop up 5000 miles from home. So this year, after I get back from Poland and Romania I am going to concoct some dreadful tales of gypsies, hoof & mouth disease, blood thirsty vampires and anything else I can think of so my friends will think twice before wanting to join my next junket.
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 09:26 PM
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I always find it amusing that other people know what's best for me; sure, if I complain or ask for advice, they have a right to give me their opinions.

My stock response for "friends" who tell me how I should do things: I open my purse, hand them my checkbook, address book and wallet and say "here, you can run my ENTIRE life; if I don't get to pick out what parts I want to handle, neither can YOU." That usually shuts 'em up real fast.

Djah ever notice the people who offer the most advice have lives that could stand improvement?
Old Aug 19th, 2001, 10:02 PM
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I am continually surprised (though I shouldn't be by now) at how uninterested other people are in the trips we take. Maybe some of it is jealousy, though I try to downplay any glamour & expenses of the trip, and the people who know us well know that we're not keeping up with the Jones's in other ways, to support our travel interests. But I think part of it is lack of interest. I've had several people tell me, more or less politely, "why would you want to go where they don't speak English." But if somebody I know goes for a trip, even somewhere I have no interest in, I have tons of questions: not just where did you go, but what was it like, what were the people like, what did you think of it, was it what you expected. I'd love to talk all day about my trips, but I only do so with other travel-lovers that I know. The rest get a three-sentence summary (or maybe six, if they look interested after three).
Old Aug 20th, 2001, 04:29 AM
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I Disowned Them!!!
Old Aug 20th, 2001, 05:33 AM
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Voice of reason........

I hear ya!
Old Aug 20th, 2001, 05:53 AM
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Hi everyone! As Kavey said, "we don't choose pur relatives, but we choose pur friends." I'm a big believer in that. My husband and I are constantly planning our next trip, but our friends do too! We even borrow each other's travel guides! This year, one of my friends spent 9 weeks traveling throughout Asia. She sent us travelogues every week by e-mail and I have saved them. Other friends of ours went last year to Canada, Portugal and Bermuda. We sat down with them to look at their pictures and get ideas. Another couple went last to Greece and Turkey. They all want to know about our travels and we want to know about theirs!

The relatives, on the other hand, are a problem. My brother-in-law has been asking us to visit him in LA. he always accuses us of bring selfish with our vacation time "always wanting to go to Europe or the Caribbean or Latin America." The problem is we live in the East Coast and we would have to use vacation time to visit him. Because of the way my husband's vacation time is structured, he gets two 2-week vacation periods per year, and usually doesn't get holidays off. So it's very difficult to visit a relative without using one of the official vacation periods. I have no interest in LA and would rather use the vacation time to do something else. So what we will probably do is we'll travel sometime somewhere in Asia, and do a few days' stop-over in LA, to appease his brother. I really think is jealousy showing through though!

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