You love them, you hate them and you can’t get rid of them no matter what you do. In-laws are one of those things in a marriage that constantly test the relationship and often become the deal breakers that lead to divorce. So many men and woman love their in-laws before they become legally bond and find that with marriage, the entangled web of resentment and animosity brews like rich Columbian coffee – but doesn’t taste quite as well. The problem is that once you have in laws, whether they are picture perfect or monsters – you have to learn to deal with them somehow, someway.
Most people just admit to everyone in the world but their spouse that the in laws are just crazy! You may wonder how they your husband or wife came out so good being raised by such morons and feel delight in thinking that you had something to do with that. You didn’t! Fact is that in a decade you will be accusing your spouse of being just like their own parents. These traits never come out at first because 90% of the people on the planet spend a lot of energy hoping and trying not to be like their parents. One day, they just get so sick of the work it takes to try and be different than what they are that they leave the whole façade behind. Chances are when this happens, not only do they act like their parents (the in laws) but they look just like them to. Weathered and cranky with a set of moral characteristics that a spouse just cant understand for the simple reason that they were raised with a whole different set of twisted morals themselves! (Say that 10 times fast)
In laws are not always well meaning and for wives, they are especially painful. The mother in law just can’t get over the fact that her little boy is being coddled by another woman and she takes it out on the wife. Secretly of course. She may spike the punch, over pepper something she has cooked or precision iron her son’s shirts just to make his wife look bad. When the kids come, SHE always knows best – no matter what and through secret phone conversations will use the art of suggestion to make her daughter in law look like a roving idiot. Of course, husband can’t see it because to him – mom is God! The arguments can end or start there and realizing of course that your mother in laws purpose is to make you look and feel like a terrible maternal figure can make the situation laughable at least.
For the son in law, the scorning eyes of dad or pop or whatever you call him now are speaking volumes about the twisted efforts he knows you used to get into your wife’s pants. Why? Because he too is a man and he knows all the tricks of the trade. While the son/father in law relationship isn’t quite as a petty as the daughter/mother in law one – most son in laws realize that one wrong move with daddy’s little girl and the fury will be unleashed. Don’t provide enough, make her go to the laundry mat or stay out late with friends and you can expect the protective armor of fatherhood to be unveiled.
When it comes to the in-laws, married folks need to realize first and foremost that some things are best left unsaid and undone. Many couples are close friends with the in-laws which can be difficult especially if things get rough in the marriage. There are certain things that in-laws should not be included in and they are as follows: finances, sex life, relationship woes, raising of children and the private life of their son or daughter in law. In other words, keeping up appearances, maintaining cordialness and keeping your true feelings and jokes about THEIR CHILD are the three easiest ways to keep the relationship good. Also, consider that these people are parents and like you, they never quite lose that urge and desperation to parent. BUT if you give them an inch they will take a mile and you will be forced upon the wall unable to speak your mind or protest. All of this can be difficult because in-laws often act like the sheep in devils clothing, drawing you in like the Vampires in Twilight- just to bite you in the juggler. Every thing you say and do can and will be held against you at some point.
Certainly, the in-laws aren’t all bad. Some of them baby sit at will. Some of them mind their own business and are generally thoughtful. Some of them are great buddies (to a point) and some are especially fun to be around. But when they are gone, it serves all marriages well to sort of shake the in-law dust off of their soul so that something doesn’t settle deep inside at a later time. If you like them, tolerate them or would feel fine if they dropped of the edge of the Earth, it is best to share these thoughts with friends rather than you spouse. Somewhere deep, what we love and what we hate is buried inside our own spouse, ready to rear its head at some point which will have you shaking in your boots and choking on your words if you speak to soon!