A few days ago, I wrote the post Moxie & My Mother-in-Law.
I promised some ideas for sweetening your relationship with your mother-in-law. They are listed below. Sometimes it helps to have a new perspective. Please add your excellent ideas in the comment section 🙂
So, if you’re wondering how to love your mother-in-law (or maybe just start liking her), here are some ideas:
- Do you know what pushes your buttons? Plan for the encounter before she walks in the door. Practice receiving her ideas. Make it clear when you have a different way of doing things, but say it kindly.
- If you occasionally seek her advice on issues and follow it appreciatively, it may give you more space when your way isn’t Mom’s way.
- Set boundaries as graciously as possible, such as: “We want to spend time with you; let us know you’re coming so we can plan ahead.”
- Attack any problem issues when you and your husband are alone. As a team, work out a plan to improve things for the future.
- Mention what you like about your mother-in-law — to your husband. Complaining about his mother may only motivate your husband to defend her.
- Praise her sincerely. Praise her often. Tell her what you like about her as a mother-in-law or a grandmother. Speak of the excellent habits or qualities that she taught your husband when he was young. Show gratefulness for the sacrifices she made.
- Love her, forgive her, speak of her strengths and overlook her offenses. Don’t ever criticize her in front of your children. Extend understanding to your mother-in-law and speak the truth graciously. She will see your love for her…. as well as your firm resolve to create an entirely new household.
Finally, treat your mother-in-law with love, honor and respect – just like you would want a future daughter-in-law to treat you.
(c) Lisa M. Luciano 🙂