Whether you’ve been married for some time now, recently wedded, or planning to in the near future, one inescapable aspect of any successful marriage is how well you get along with your in-laws, or more specifically in the Asian context, your mother-in-law. Don’t get us wrong, we’re not saying ALL mothers-in-law are hard to please. But, come on, there’s sure to be a reason why you commonly hear some newlyweds rant about their
monster mother-in-law (MIL), right?
If this applies to you, here are a few struggles you’ll relate to:
1. She’s always trying to “improve” your cookingEspecially if you’re an interracial couple and you’re trying to make a dish she used to make for the family.
And it doesn’t even matter if your version of the dish actually turned out BETTER than hers, she’s surely commented on it at least once.
2. When she compares you to her other daughters-in-law/sons-in-lawSadly, if your mother-in-law has her favourite, you’ll be compared a lot. And no matter how hard you try to win her over, she’ll still nitpick on the tiniest of things for you to improve on. How to win like that 😥.
3. When she starts giving you parenting adviceSure, we may not be pros as being a first-time parent would take some getting used to, but it’s important for us to make our own mistakes and learn from them, okay?
4. Getting in the way of family matters by providing her “expert” advice
Be it when deciding on which property is most suitable, places to visit on a family vacation, or even where to send the kids to school — you can rest assured she’ll be there to provide some input, regardless of whether you need it or not 😛.
5. If you hire a maid for help, she’ll say you’re lazyBut if anything is not up to her standard of cleanliness, she’ll complain too.
I mean, there’s nothing wrong with getting some help around the house if you and your spouse are working full-time jobs, amirite?
6. Reorganising your house the way she sees fitThis is a nightmare for anyone who enjoys designing and puts a lot of TLC in creating a home they’re proud of. I’m sure they mean well, but maybe they should just give us their opinions and let us decide if things need to be moved around, you know? 😑
Phew! If you made it this far and relate to at least a couple of these things, we feel you!
Whether you’re in a similar situation yourself or know someone who’s struggling with their in-laws, here are a few things you can try as a couple:
- Let her know you value her opinion but you’re capable enough and that any mistakes made are necessary for growth.
- Gently set a few boundaries to help her realise that her child has his/her own life to live.
- Find a tiny problem around the house that could use her help and ask for her input. Once solved, let her know how much she helped.
- The key here is to let your in-laws feel you respect their views and that you’re able to reach out for help if you need it, thereby making them less likely to invade.
- Try to not take things too personally (your MIL may only be trying to help) and change the subject to something more positive whenever a touchy issue is brought up.
And! If that isn’t enough then another cheeky tactic you can try to win her over is by helping with the house chores.
Anything works, like easing her burden by getting her groceries done for her. #tacticsbrother.
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What do you think of these struggles though? Do you think we missed anything out? Let us know in the comments below!