Dear Miss Dela,

I’m having trouble with the future in-laws. I feel that I’m caught in the middle – between my own family and my fiancé’s family. I need advice sorting out where my loyalty lies.

You could say that my family is an object of social ridicule. We have a lot of psychological issues that would excite any self-respecting therapist (our issues probably invented the need for therapy). However, my family members are (or were) good people who simply fell unlucky in the game of fate and circumstance, and I feel a great sense of duty and devotion to them. My parents are deceased. When my father died, my sister, two brothers, and I only had each other. My brothers went a little crazy when deciding how to handle my father’s estate. The disagreement became such a violent battle that sadly ended in both of their deaths.

My fiancé’s father is very controlling and stubborn. He blames the younger of my two brothers for the death of the elder, and he says the entire event is a huge disgrace to our families. We buried the elder of my two brothers, but my future father-in-law decreed that the younger does not deserve a funeral. Regardless of who is at fault, I loved both of my brothers, and I want to see them both laid to rest, free of the troubling life our family has endured. I had the younger of my two brothers buried in secret. However, my fiancé’s father was furious when he found out, and he dug up my brother’s body. He says that I am to be disowned if I defy him again, and the marriage between his son and I will be called off. Should I remain loyal to my first family and lose my place in my new one?