When you enter into a serious relationship that is headed towards marriage, it’s not just a lifetime commitment for two; it is a lifetime commitment for a whole bunch of people, including your man’s mom. Whether you like it or not, your future mother-in-law will be a part of your married life. Cue Jaws theme song. Why is this so important?
Well, take this for starters: One out of ten married couples in Britain separate because of in-law problems according to the study done by The Co-operative Legal Services. Eleven percent out of the 2,000 couples surveyed cites in-laws’ meddling to the breakdown of their marriages.
If there is tension brewing between you and your guy’s mom, it’s best to do whatever you can to repair the relationship. Many women feel like their mother in law hates them for no reason, but there might be some quick fixes to your issues. Take a deep breath, put your pride aside and remember how much it will mean to your boyfriend/husband if you can repair your relationship with his mother.
Here are six common issues women run into with their mother in law and how to deal with them.
1. She’s overly competitive
She treats your relationship to her son like a highly charged Olympic marathon; the survival of the fittest, or in her case, the bitchiest. She constantly competes for her son’s attention whenever she can and goes out of her way to make it happen with complete disregard for your feelings.
Your move: No matter how much you want to, do not compete with her. Again, do not compete with her. This way, she’ll figure out that you’re not a threat to their special bond. Assess the reason for her actions and stretch your level of understanding.
2. She compares
“Angela doesn’t look as curvy as you when she wears something like that”. Boom! There it is! Subtle rancor. Never mind that her favorite ex-daughter-in-law, Angela, is a harlot who divorced her son to elope with their kid’s swimming coach. She compares you to her, to her son’s ex, to practically everybody.
Your move: Charm your way into her heart by doing the things that she likes. If she still continues to do this, then, take comfort in knowing that you did your best. No regrets.
3. She belittles you
Whatever you do, no matter how you try and how much you have achieved, your mother in law still treats you like a low-life citizen. Could it be that her bar is raised so high that even God cannot fulfill it? Maybe.
Your move: Analyze why she does this and continue to be cordial. Be confident enough in what you have achieved in your life. In terms of personal accomplishments, your approval will be the only thing that matters.
4. She shamelessly campaigns for the demise of your relationship
She bluntly tells his son to end his relationship with you. When his son refuses, she turns to you! She would regularly talk to you and reason out with you as to why you and her son don’t belong together.
Your move: Tell her why you do belong together. This mindset of hers is based on the negative side of both you and your fiancé personalities, so tell her the opposite. Emphasize the positive facts that make you and your fiancé a power couple. Showing rather than just telling will help you out here also. If she see’s you are a happy, thriving, secure couple, she’ll have no ground to stand on when she suggests you two aren’t a perfect match.
5. She backbites
She tells every member of her family about the things that she hates about you, imaginary or otherwise. She adds in a little more spice to strengthen her claim and make you look like the fiancée from hell. The bad news is they believe her.
Your move: The solution is simple – “Live in such a way that if someone spoke badly of you, no one would believe it.” There’s no need to explain and don’t get involved in her games. Chances are the people around you can see for themselves what the real deal is.
6. She’s dependent on her son
It is especially stressful when your future mother-in-law is financially and emotionally dependent on your fiancé. This almost always guarantees continuous meddling from her. Expect constant phone calls, unannounced visits and “you don’t love me anymore” drama from her.
Your move: The solution for this depends on your willingness to accept the situation. It will also depend on how much you love your fiancé. Talk to your future MIL and make an effort to befriend her. If you’re not comfortable with the situation, try setting some rules that will be a win-win situation for the three of you.
Ultimately, no matter how much you try or want to work towards a loving, caring (or at the very least, civil) relationship with your mother in law, she has to be willing to meet you in the middle. Do the best that you can but remember that her issue quite likely isn’t really with you–she’s just taking it out on you! Don’t be afraid to ask for your man’s help in handling his mother, too! Remember–he’s been dealing with her for years, he should be an old pro by now!
Have you ever had an issue with your mother in law?