It is said that when you get married, you not only marry that person but also his family! If you are a new bride, you’ll probably understand what we mean. And, one of the initial challenges of a newly married life for a new bride is bonding with her in-laws. And, one family member that she is generally cautioned about, albeit unfairly, is the mother-in-law (MIL). However, not all mothers-in-law are what they are generally made out to be. In fact, if you were to know the kind of person your MIL is, you might actually end up bonding with her big time. So, to help you in this endeavor, here are 5 kinds of mothers-in-law (broadly classified) that you can look out for:
1. The Envious Kind
She is probably the one who is used to getting all the attention from her family members, especially if she doesn’t have a daughter. But, with your arrival, the focus of attention shifts to you, which your MIL will probably not be too happy about. This could make her envious of you and she’ll start devising ways to earn back her son’s attention, which might prove detrimental to your relationship. If your mother-in-law is such a kind, then start by giving her attention yourself. Be generous and genuine with your compliments for her and soon she’ll give up envying you.
2. The Mom-Knows-It-All Kind
This is the perfectionist kind of mother-in-law. Your mom-in-law would have run her household with so much perfection that she’ll continue to expect it from you as well. And, in order to make you live up to her standards, she might meddle in every single affair of your life. From the choice of spices you should store to even the fabric of your upholstery, she’ll always add her two cents of advice every time. However, as frustrating as it might be, you need to know that she probably means good for you. So, acknowledge her efforts by seeking her advice beforehand and she’ll soon warm up to you.
3. The I-Have-Your-Back Kind
These are the mothers-in-law who wish to help you, yet understand the importance of keeping a space in your relationship. Having had the experience of running her household for years, she’ll always be ready to pitch in whenever you seek her help. But, on other days, she’ll just let you be on your own. By doing so, she wants you to learn to get up again every time you make a slip or tumble. She is more like a teacher to you. So value her!
4. The Emotional One
This kind of mother-in-law is the one who is unable to let go of her insecurities. As much as she admires you or appreciates your way of running the household, she’ll still be unable to let go of her son. She may come up with emotional one-liners just to make your husband spend some time with her. At times, these emotional ‘outbursts’ may also become a spoke in the wheel when you make plans with your husband. Help your husband sort this situation by setting aside a dedicated mother-son time every day so you can make plans that do not overlap with this schedule.
5. The Master Of Tug-O-War
This is a mother-in-law who’ll declare war on you from day 1 and will never take the subtle route of diplomacy to show her dislike toward you. She’ll also make unprecedented demands from her son just to make him toe the line. If such a situation arises, first have a talk with your husband. Take him into confidence since he knows his mom better. Also, involve your families, if possible, for a healthy dialogue to sort the issue. Once you know the reason for dislike, you both can mutually sort out the differences and start afresh.
Remember, at the end of the day, your mother-in-law is the mother of your husband. Her behavior is influenced by the fact that she has to let go of the person she has nurtured over the years. And there is nothing that you can’t win over with love. Once she is convinced you are the right person for her beloved son, you’ll soon win a place in her heart too. So, good luck!
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