How To Have A Good Relationship With The Other Woman In Your Husbands Life!
(Pixabay) No matter how liberated we like to think we are, mention the mother-in-law and most of us understand our relationship, even if amicable, still needs careful handling.
As women, our relationship with our mums is quite distinct from any other relationship we'll ever have. Even if we fight, we can't avoid being close: it is our first relationship and we're so similar, yet different.
Jealousy puts up barriers in these relationships. Daughters-in-law often envy the relationship between mother and son and want to replace that relationship with themselves. Meanwhile, mother-in-law wants her son looked after in the way only she can, which is of course impossible, unless the daughter in law is her clone.
These differences can soon cause a bitter stalemate. The main problem with the mother and daughter-in-law relationship is the feeling of inferiority it causes. If Mum won't give up mothering her son even though he's married, daughter-in-law is made to feel she's the second woman in his life. Learning to get on better with your mother-in-law is about learning how to feel less of a victim, and deflecting difficult behaviour.
A blessing in disguise
It's worth reminding yourself that your mother-in-law can be a blessing, and it really is worth putting in some work to improve your relationship. Mothers-in-law can be a real source of support. If you start off with a bad relationship, and let her get away with making you feel inadequate, the less likely things are to change. The more confident you are about your position in her son's life, the easier you'll get on.
5 ways to stop in-law wars:
1. Keep talking. Don't clam up and simmer in silence when she says something that upsets you. It's possible to let her know what you don't like, and why, without causing major offence.
For example: 'I realise you're only trying to help, but it makes me feel immature when you give me advice I haven't asked for. There are lots of things I'd really value your advice on, but I'd find it much more helpful if I could ask you first.'
2. Appreciate her good points. Instead of fuming when she's cleaned your kitchen from top to bottom, why not thank her for being so helpful and feel pleased that you didn't have to do it for once? It's amazing how much gentler she'll be if she sees, every so often, that you do value her.
3. Go for thoughtful when it comes to gifts. Anyone can present her with a voucher or pop money into a card. Show her how much you think of her by actually thinking of her. You can find inspiration at Cuckooland.com's gifts for her collection. By purchasing something unique she will know just how much you care.
4. Ask her advice. She never approves of your cooking? Turn it around by asking her what she thinks your other half would really enjoy. That way she'll still feel involved, but you haven't let her take over.
5. Visit her. If she's in the habit of turning up at your house unannounced, it's often easily solved by calling on her instead. Pop in for a coffee every so often, which shows her you're thinking of her but takes away her need to drop in on you unexpectedly.