I'm sure this is an age-old problem: Girl meets guy, they fall in love, guy's mother doesn't like girl. That is pretty much my issue here.
I'm currently in graduate school (starting year numero 2, whoop whoop! Only 2 more to go!). I met my boyfriend while completing my undergraduate degree at another university. We've been together for a little over 2 & 1/2 years. Over that time period, he's become very close to my Mom. She's always told me that she likes him, and looks at him as a second son. She treats him like a son, too, not like a guest. My boyfriend likes her quite a bit too, and is always easy around her. He just gets more relaxed in general; like he can talk about anything without being judged by her. It's good to see that between both of them.
I wish the same could be said for his mother and myself... (I'll just refer to my boyfriend's mother as "X".) X's mother died when she was a kid, so I always thought that that might have something to do with her coldness towards me, but I'm not so sure. X's father got remarried only a year after her death, and she treats her step-mother like her real Mom (and it's reciprocated).
Anyway, I feel like X is very cold towards me. I've gone up to my boyfriend's parents house many, many times, but her attitude never changes. I'm naturally very shy, and I was always taught to never speak (at length, anyway) unless spoken to. X never tries to engage me in any conversation at the dinner table, car, or etc. There have been times where we've been completely alone in the same room for over 2 hours, and she hasn't said a word to me. When I try to get something started, she'll answer, but won't take the bait to just talk with me.
She isn't that way with other people. My boyfriend's brother's girlfriend (whom I'll call "Y" here) gets along quite well with X. When Y speaks, X listens attentively, asks questions that shows she's interested, and actually displays emotion! (I kid you not, X hardly ever, ever smiles at me.) It just makes me feel all sorts of crappy.
Another reason that I suspect X may not like me is how she talks about Y. When complete strangers ask about my boyfriend and his brother, X will immediately start talking about my boyfriend's brother and Y, and their careers. One is a mechanic, and the other is in school to become a radiology tech. Both are good at what they do, and I like them a lot. I just wish that X would acknowledge my boyfriend and I. Only half the time does she note what my boyfriend is doing, and almost all of the time she says absolutely nothing about me. Now, I'm not a braggart by any means. I'm not praised or petted on a daily basis, and I can certainly live without it! It would just make me feel good to have someone praise my efforts, you know?
Usually the strangers that inquired about X's sons will ask me directly what I do, almost seeming to note that she left me out. When I tell them that I'm in graduate school, they seem surprised. I expect that most of them thought I was holding a crap job somewhere!
I'm just not sure why X wouldn't like me. I don't drink, smoke, curse, or get myself into any trouble. I always try to be polite and respectful, even if I cannot stand the person I'm dealing with. I give my opinion about certain subjects, but I'm always open to discussion and dialogue. I try to keep an open mind, and be diplomatic.
It just makes no sense to me. I don't think it's an issue of "stealing her little boy away", since she gets along so well with Y.
This just frustrates me on so many levels. I've tried to kill her with kindness, again and again, and it never works. The anxiety I feel when just thinking of going to see them is unsettling.
Any thoughts and/or advice?