July 31, 2014 at 11:03 am | Marriage | No comment
Are your in-laws intervening between you and your husband and affecting your relationship? While a marriage is built on the love and commitment of two people, the relationship is often threatened by external problems. One of the most delicate issues to deal with in a marriage is problematic relationships with the in-laws.
How do you cope with your in-laws without hurting your partner’s feelings? Let’s look at some essential steps that you can take today to help you deal with any problems you may be facing with your in-laws, without adversely affecting your relationship.
Step 1 – Differentiate Between Your In-Laws and Your Partner
Unfortunately this is a very easy trap to fall into. If your mother-in-law or father-in-law intervene in your relationship and cause problems, you may feel like holding your partner responsible because they are his parents.
However, you need to remember that your in-laws are adults and fully responsible for their actions, and their son, your partner, cannot be held accountable for their doings.
If your mother-in-law criticizes your ability to look after the children or your behavior in any way, that does not mean your partner feels the same. He married you, he loves you, and although he may try to, he cannot control how his parents treat you.
This is an essential step to start with when your in-laws are causing problems in your marriage. By understanding that your partner is not at fault, it will help you to protect your marriage and guard both of you from any negativity that may come from his parents.
Step 2 – Communicate Wisely About Your In-Laws With Your Partner
While you may feel very tempted to get everything off your chest in front of your partner, remember that they are his parents and this is a delicate issue for him. Surely he would do anything to have you and them get along, but somehow he is obliged to take sides and see both points of view.
In this situation, it is best to call a friend or family member to complain about your in-laws. When it comes to your partner, be the bigger person and have a wise conversation instead.
Think of solutions and suggest them to him, which will make him less likely to defend his parents, as you are not attacking them in the first place, and more likely to bring ideas to the table. He is probably better equipped to solve the problem as he knows his parents much better than you.
Step 3 – Avoid Confrontation With Your In-Laws At All Costs
If your in-laws are acting unreasonable and challenging your marriage, you may feel tempted to confront them. Maybe your father-in-law made an inappropriate remark or your mother-in-law is talking bad about you to your husband. Either way, confrontation is almost never the solution.
When you marry your partner, the in-laws come with the package, and although you don’t have to live with them (hopefully, otherwise the situation is likely to be even more challenging), you are stuck with them forever. For this reason, it is best to avoid confronting them and fully damaging the relationship you have with them.
Try to wisely lead conversations in the right direction, and if necessary, even avoid too much contact. You can visit them less, or maybe suggest that your partner sometimes visits them alone, while you make polite excuses. Avoiding them might not be the best solution either, but confrontation is much worse, as the consequences can have damaging effects on your marriage.
Hopefully these three steps helped you to look at your situation with your in-laws from a different perspective and analyze what course of action is best suited for you.
Remember that you have not married your in-laws, but your husband, so whatever challenge you may be facing now, it’s fully manageable and probably temporary.
If you can only carry out one step out of the three, remember the first one- your husband cannot be held accountable for his parents’ actions.