‘Its Complicated’, describes many a relationships, but it can be best suited for a relationship between a Mother-in-law and her daughter-in-law!! No matter how easy-going, confident and calm a woman might be, but when it comes to meeting the dreaded Monster-in-Law, er.. Sorry I mean, Mother-in-Law, it is nothing less than the feeling of going for that Practical Viva in front of an external Examiner, back in College. Rather, this case is far more scary, the examiner then, was supposed to just give you marks, but this ‘examiner’ is going to rate you, judge you and taunt you, not just for the things that you do but even more for the things that you don’t do! Everything, just everything is going to be put under a scanner.
ADAM AND EVE WERE THE HAPPIEST COUPLE AS NEITHER OF THEM HAD A MOTHER-IN-LAW! #justsaying
Isn’t that sad! Why should it be like this, why should this relationship be so bitter and so tangled! Well, simply because, we are humans and we have feelings (though sometimes it feels that She doesn’t, but we all do!). Imagine her state, “she was the most important woman for her son till you came into the picture”, “she’s isn’t able to mother him the way she did earlier, the son has less and less of time for her, she feels she’s losing him and her control”, so let’s be generous and let’s cut her some emotional slack. Are you rolling your eyes, that you’ve done it or have had enough, in that case let’s focus on what else can be done. Here are 7 Ways to Deal with a Pokey Mother-in-Law!!
RELAX AND BE YOURSELF
It might be difficult to do that, but if you master this technique of handling her, it is going to be a blessing! Quite often in our attempt to impress the in-laws, we get carried away and do things we normally wouldn’t even think of doing for our own parents or family . But sooner later it becomes a burden to carry and rather difficult to come out of the mold that everyone is used to! The best way is to be real. Being sugar-coated or “haanji mummy types”, won’t go too far. She has to like you the way you are, if she can’t its her problem. You chill!
I wish I could say this out loud-“Dear Mother-in-law, for your unending suggestions Thanks, but No thanks”!
Consider yourself lucky if you don’t live in the same house with a pokey MIL.But even if you do, start treating her like an acquaintance rather than a family member. Don’t let your happiness or misery be based on what she says or thinks! Detaching yourself if not physically then at least mentally will give you the much needed peace of mind, and it would really help you feel light. Don’t we think and do better when we are mentally free! Arguing beyond a point won’t really help, so avoid such issues, try and keep your conversations need-based. Sometimes just walking away from an emotionally charged up situation, is the best way to win! Go, have a glass of water, come back and change the topic!
I wish I could say this out loud-“Dear Mother-in-law, this is none of your business!”
IT’S NOT REALLY HIS FAULT
Yes, we tend to blame him, but its not really his fault. He neither chose her nor asked her to be like that. Its smart to talk to him about how to deal with a tricky-situation, but nagging, fighting and making him the bad guy, will only push him away! Remember how much you hate it when someone says anything against your parents, it goes the same way for everyone else too. With or without his help, find a smarter way of dealing with your MIL, and surprise him!
I wish I could say this out loud-Dear Mother-in-law, “Don’t show up unannounced!”
SET YOUR BOUNDARIES
Whether you live in a joint family or alone, your boundaries should be firmly set and conveyed, especially when it comes to your kids. No doubt that for this you need the support of your husband too, so speak to him in advance. Don’t make rules to get even with her, rather be sensible and decide what’s best for you and your kids. Be firm, be clear but be fair and kind. Have a clear picture in your mind and work on it wisely. No matter how manipulative everyone is, stand ground!
I wish I could say this out loud-“Dear Mother-in-law, don’t advice me all the time about bringing up kids, I’ve seen your work, it’s not as perfect as you think!’
DON’T WASTE TIME IN TRYING TO CHANGE HER
The only person you can change is You, and that too is so difficult. If she is cunning, conniving and bad mouths you, despite your sincere efforts, she has made it very clear that she won’t change, so stop trying. If she brings nothing but bitterness and negativity in your life, keep her at an arm’s length. Change your own attitude if you can. Learn to compartmentalise your emotions, and don’t keep many for her.
I wish I could say this out loud-“Dear Mother-in-law, Your son is not a baby anymore!”
GIVE YOUR HUSBAND SOME ALONE TIME WITH HER
Yes, you vowed ‘Janam Janam ka saath’, but don’t take it so much to heart. You don’t really have to accompany him every time he goes to see his mother. And if you are staying together, give the mother-son duo some time together. Come on, be a little generous, a few minutes everyday if they both can talk, it would do good to all. She would be happy that she’s getting the ‘much-needed-attention’, her son has time for her. You can shed the load off as he might be able to explain your issues. It’s not because he explains better but because she listens better when he talks.
I wish I could say this out loud-“Dear Mother-in-law, Mera pati sirf Mera Hai!”
DON’T FEEL GUILTY
Many a times, she may say things that make you feel guilty, be smart and recognize that situation. You don’t want to be rude but put a stop to the use of guilt as a weapon. “You know when you went out with friends, I had to do all the work myself!” How typical! She is doing this purposely, but if you refuse to enter the emotional state of guilt, it would help you think clearer and you would do what’s right!
I wish I could say this out loud-“Dear Mother-in-law, NO.”
So, its basically let’s make it all about your own attitude. Again, arguing, fighting and sulking may not help you much. It is indeed very difficult to be calm but then, sometimes, for your own peace of mind, you need to take things with a pinch of salt, like they say,“ek kaan se suno, doosre Kan se nikaal do”! Be clear but try not to be rude. Also leave behind the bitter memories, and try to move on.
Also remember these tips applies only to poky mother in laws and not all Mother-in-laws are same,some can be as sweet as cake. Don’t be nasty yourself and judge your mother in law as genuinely as you would judge your own mother. Remember Karma is a bitch1
And every time she says or does something nasty, take notes for, “Things I would never do as a Mother-in-Law!”
You’ll make this world a better place!