Dealing with in-laws may be a walk in the park and of good experience but can sometimes prove to be tricky for spouses. Whatever the case, it is something you cannot avoid and once you tie that knot it is advisable that you seek guidance on the best practices of living with in-laws after marriage. It can be parents or brothers and sisters
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How to Deal With Your In-Laws
Remember, these are people who are introduced into your lives at advanced stages by virtue of marriage and therefore extra care should be taken when handling them. There are certain guidelines that can help a couple handle these relationships.
- Work with your spouse – This forms a key rule. In dealing effectively with them, it is important you first resolve issues associated with them together since it affects both of you. You need to discuss and understand each other’s feeling and the bond they hold towards their family.
- Learn to set boundaries and limits – Together with your spouse, you need to decide on what is necessary or not, then politely communicate this to them in the best way possible. Remember to make realistic promises and stick to them. Again learn to respect them as they can also be your potential source of your support
- Practice direct communication – It is advisable that if an issue bothers you, address it as early as possible. If possible, avoid third party (spouse) as a means of communication. This promotes understanding, openness and respect.
- Know who you are – Remain true to yourself and never remake yourself into that person that suits your in laws. Living like someone else denies you the sense of freedom and expression, a situation which might make one unable to realize his or her self-actualization and self-identity.
- Adjust with the program – Adjust with the realities associated with them. For example, just because you father-in-law never enters your bedroom, do not expect your mother-in-law to do the same. Naturally, mothers are obsessed with motherhood roles; they might want to play with their grandchildren in the kitchen, clear the table after meal and even prepare family meals herself. Let these not surprise you as a husband but instead, understand them as realities and learn to get along with them.
- Learn the act of cooling off – However bad the situation might be; never attack your in-laws with insults or physical abuse. If you cannot handle the situation, you are advised to either keep quite or go to a private place and take time to cool off yourself. Remember that anger is very difficult to control and actions related to it can be damaging and self-degrading. In other words, practice self-control, smile and be kind to them.
Dealing With Mother-In-Law
Relationship between mother and daughter in-law can either be that of support and friendship or that full of jealousy and hatred. In a study conducted by Dr. Terri Apter, nearly half the women described their relationships with mothers and daughters in-law as tense, uneasy, hostile or uncomfortable. How then do we handle these difficult or rude mothers-in-law?
- Be tolerant – Try to empathize with her and understand what she goes through and don’t dismiss her efforts and advice. In this case she will gain some sense of recognition and belonging.
- Give attention to her – Do not ignore her otherwise, she will feel abandoned. Let her son visit her and create some time for her. This will make her feel loved and wanted.
- Discuss it with your partner – If you feel you cannot cope with the mother-in-law’s problems, discuss it with your husband and try to find a lasting solution. It is advisable you focus the discussion on her behaviors and not character assessment.
- Communicate with her – If there is an issue to be solved, be sober and honestly let her understand your views and feelings. Most marriage problems are caused by misunderstanding and so there should be clear communication pathway between you and your mother in law.
How to Deal With In-Laws You Don’t Like
In-laws may sometimes get into actions that may ruin relationships between you and them.
Whatever the case, it does not mean you don’t act on these problems, neither does it mean you divorce due to in-laws. Instead, learn to face them and live a life not harmful to you and your spouse.
Types of In-Laws You Don’t Like May Include Those Who:
- Are ready to go to any extent just to get whatever they want from you, be it money.
- Undermine, mock or dismiss you in front of others.
- Question your every action.
- Compare you with others.
- Want to know more about your personal life.
- Try to turn you and your partner into enemies.
- Talk behind your back while you are away.
- Want to be part of your decision making team.
- Intentionally make you feel bad.
- Don’t respect you and your partner’s space.
If You Notice One or More of The Above Behaviors, Try The Following Solutions:
- Avoid expectations – Never expect these people to change to be the person you want them to be however how much good you try to be.
- Be assertive – Be courageous and discuss the issue with them and make them know how bad you feel about their behavior towards you.
- Continue with your life – Never get stressed up. Accept to live with the fact and don’t be bothered by them not approving your marriage. Instead, focus on building your marriage.
- Try not to fake relationship – Do not try to be too kind even if you are hurt. Be who you are and let them see it in your reactions.
- Minimize the frequency of their visits to your home or in-law’s home – This can minimize the number of times you interact with them.