You can hear so many horror stories from both men and women about their relationships with their in-laws. I'm not just talking about mother- and father-in-law relationships, either. Sometimes people can't get along with their brothers-in-law or sisters-in-law either. It doesn't have to be hectic and stressful though. You can have a good relationship, even if you have to work at it. Maybe these 8 tips on making peace with your in-laws can help!
1. Work Together
You and your partner really have to work together. It's not fair to put your partner in a situation where he or she feels the need to make a choice between you and his or her family. It wouldn't be fair for you to be in that situation either. Even if your in-laws really get on your nerves, remember that as long as you're with your partner, you're with them, too.
2. Create Boundaries
The key to any relationship is the setting of boundaries and the creation of limits. With your in-laws, you need to set boundaries in terms of dealing with your children, if any; with the subject of money; with anything that you know makes you feel uncomfortable. You don't have to get all up in their face about these topics, though. A calm and reasonable discussion will go a lot farther than any mad confrontations.
3. Make Good on Promises
If you make a promise, you have to try to keep it. Now, this is just an example, because I never minded this. But, when we still lived in Michigan, where my in-laws to-be still live, I knew going into the relationship that the Better Half had dinner with the folks every Sunday. Was I okay with that? Absolutely! Did I always want to go? Not necessarily – so when I didn't feel up to it, I didn't go, but I also didn't pitch a fit and keep the BH from going.
Communication is so important. Better still, you need to do it directly. What that means is, don't as your partner to pass messages onto his or her mother, or to tell his or her brother's wife that you have an issue with something she's done. Do it yourself, face to face. It's easy for misunderstandings to take place when you try to play a game of Telephone like that, and the resulting messages can make a bad situation even worse.
5. Know Who You Are
You don't need to make yourself into the perfect daughter-in-law. You don't need to try to be Super DIL. Don't try to be something you're not just because you think it will please your in-laws. Even if they make no bones about excepting you to be someone you're not, you do not have to do that. Whether you want to be a stay-at-home mom and homemaker or the CEO of your company, that's cool. Remember, your partner loves you the way you are; the in-laws will learn to accept it, too.
6. Make Compromises
Compromise is an important part of any relationship, but it's especially important where your in-laws are concerned. Sometimes you have to agree to disagree. Sometimes you have to do things that will make your partner and your in-laws happy. Sometimes they have to do things that will make you happy. Taking one of the team is never a bad thing, but by no means should the compromising always be one sided.
7. Stay Cool
Sometimes, you just have to let yourself cool off so you can stay calm. It's important to be as mature as possible when dealing with in-law issues, and completely losing your stuff is not going to help you to reach that level of maturity. If you have to take some time to cool down, go right ahead; it'll be better in the long run.
8. Have a Sense of Humor
Remember, your in-laws are getting to know you too – even after years, they're still probably getting to know you. Sometimes awful or annoying things happen, but they're still funny. Just try to see that side of things; it will really help you with #7, too!
I am fortunate because I love my in-laws. Sometimes certain things bug me – but even my own parents bug me, so I take it with a grain of salt. How is your relationship with your in-laws?
Top Photo Credit: egg.