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by Abigail Van Buren

Mom Sees Couple's Honeymoon as Good Time for Family Trip

DEAR ABBY: I have a huge problem. My fiance and I have been together for three years and are being married in October. The problem is my soon-to-be mother-in-law. She is a great lady and we get along very well; however, she insists on accompanying us on our honeymoon! She keeps pushing the idea of making it a family trip.

My fiance told her the honeymoon is going to be just for us. He tried to tell her we all could go someplace together another time, but she got upset. She abruptly got off the phone with him, saying she was "only joking," but she'd work on me.

This is a nightmare. She's normally a pleasant and reasonable person whom I like a lot. That's why I don't understand why she can't see this is a huge intrusion.

Please help. I don't want to have to change my honeymoon destination to someplace she may not want to go. –- BRIDE-TO-BE IN NORTH CAROLINA

DEAR BRIDE-TO-BE: It's not a matter of finding a destination where your future mother-in-law doesn't want to go. This "great lady" seems to have control issues or a serious case of separation anxiety. She's dead set on going wherever her son goes. She could benefit from counseling.

Although I have printed letters in the past from couples who included extended family on their honeymoon –- and a good time was had by all –- unless all parties are equally enthusiastic, it is extremely presumptuous for an in-law to continue to harp on it once the suggestion has been rejected.

Unless you want your marriage to turn into a family affair, you and your fiance must stand your ground.