The words ‘in-laws’ often strike fear into couples, with feelings of dread when having to entertain them or spend an evening in their company. This doesn’t always have to be the case and some couples get on very well with their in-laws (believe it or not!) and actually enjoy spending time with them. There are many ways to make sure you get on well with the in-laws, and here I’ve outlined some very useful tips.
Get to know your in-laws. Don’t just fake interest or tolerate them, actually make it your business to get to know them and show you care. This will make them warm to you. If you share similar interests as your other half’s siblings, why not suggest indulging in them together? It’s important to get to know them a little before doing this however, so as not to come on too strong and seem like you’re trying too hard to win their approval. Once you do get to know them, be part of the family and participate. If they live nearby, why not call in for a coffee or invite them for a coffee, even if your partner isn’t around. This shows you actually care about them and that you’re not just doing it for your other half.
The pushy mother-in-law can cause problems in any relationship. While planning your wedding you may find her having more than a fair say on what’s going on. While decorating your home, you may find the same again. And all this before you’ve even had your first child! Either way, it can start to weigh heavy on you. In some instances, a very overbearing mother-in-law’s interference can be stopped by discussing things with your partner and having them speak to her, or better still, you both speak to her showing a united front. If the mother-in-law is less over-bearing, you may find a gentle, more patient approach works best. Solving problems with the in-laws quickly is important to maintaining a good relationship. Letting problems fester will lead to bigger problems being created, which will in turn cause problems in your marriage. Problems can arise from every angle with the in-laws. From divorced parents not getting on and using their child as a tool in their arguments, to jealous sibling rivalry between you and your fiancé’s siblings, or even the dreaded feeling that no matter who you are, you won’t be good enough for your fiancé’s family.
Your wedding planning is crucial for future relations with your in-laws. If you’re the bride, why not consider your fiancé’s sisters as bridesmaids? Or nieces and nephews as flower girls and page boys? If possible, it would be great for in-law relations if you make a special effort to include them in your wedding party. If you’re the groom, why not invite your in-laws to your bachelor party? Personally, I think a man should always ask for permission from the father (or whoever fills the father role) for a woman’s hand in marriage. This shows respect and it will always be appreciated. Even so much as calling in-laws to ask for wedding planning advice will go a long way to making them feel part of it and building positive relations. So with this advice, you should have great relations with your future in-laws and a long, happy marriage.