According to research, up to 60 percent of women have complained of long term marital stress due to mother-in-law problems. For generations, people (both men and women) have come up with issues that they have had with their in-laws, but have never known how to resolve these issues.
What we fail to do, while remaining preoccupied with the issues that others create for us, is come to out of our comfort zone and step into their shoes to try and understand a specific situation from their point of view. Hence, a sense of empathy it is, that can go a long way into creating a strong and healthy bond between two or more individuals.
Here are a few guidelines you can follow to get along better with your in-laws:
ACCEPT THEM AS PART OF YOUR LIFE WITH THEIR FLAWS
Sometimes we require accepting people even if we can’t adore them. Your in-laws are one of those sets of people whom you must accept even if you don’t like them. Just as you can’t change your mother no matter how nagging she is, or your father for no matter how short tempered he is; you can’t change your in-laws because they are related to the individual you’ve decided to reside with, having accepted them as your partner for life.
YOU NEITHER NEED TO FIT IN NOR STICK OUT
Just because you’ve come from a different family and have been married into another family, doesn’t mean that you will either shirk from altering any of your ways of life that you internalised as part of your family or have to completely alter all of your values and ideas to fit in to your new family. Absorb what you as an individual feel appropriate and discard what you as an individual don’t. However sometimes it is nicer to try and cooperate on certain matters of importance and meaning to your new family, because after all you are now a part of it.
AVOID HURTING OF FEELINGS
We often end up hurting our parents-in-law or even our own parents unintentionally, so it is important that we realise that as our parents grow old, they become overly sensitive and are hurt easily especially by their children, who they feel may get distant from them; more so when they enter into a romantic or marital relationship with another individual.
FOSTER MUTUAL RESPECT
Respecting and accepting of differences by both you and your in-laws are essential. It is natural to assume that two families no matter how compatible they may be will have certain differences and these differences should not be put down by either of the parties. Fostering of mutual respect and understanding and keeping a subtle act of diplomacy at play will help in maintaining a peaceful relationship.
TRY AND COMPROMISE AT TIMES
Sometimes you might rather want to be generous and let them have their way with regards to not very significant or major matters of importance in your life. You might in fact feel good about some of the things you found wholly unacceptable about your in-laws; it was probably because you were preoccupied with the notion that they aren’t too fond of you and are trying to win over your partner. When you compromise at times you might find out that doing a certain deed their way may not feel as bad as you had assumed it would.
KEEP YOUR HUSBAND OR CHILDREN FROM ACTING AS A REFEREE
Keep your husband and children out of any kind of conflict that arises between you and your in-laws, because it is insensible to have them choose either between them or you. This will give rise to frustration and cause severe damage to both your relation with your spouse, children and your in-laws.
Try to view your in-laws as your own flawed parents whom you can’t exterminate, therefore in order to secure both personal and familial peace try and maintain an empathetic and understanding bond guided by tact and negotiation.