This post has been in the making for a long time. The reason it took so long for me to finally be able to press "publish" is due to the fact that it took me FOREVER to get through all of the dm's that were sent to me in response to this topic on the Ask the Moms series. Thank you to all who opened up to me about their experiences and gave honest and helpful advice. This week's topic is actually one that I cannot relate to in any way, shape, or form because it is my personal belief that I have the world's best mother-in-law. She doesn't ever step on my toes as a mother, she doesn't give unsolicited advice about how to parent (although she will when I ask), she understands that her role to my children is that of a grandmother and not of a mother. It is just a huge blessing, as is she. With that being said, I know this is not the case for many women/mothers out there. This week, I asked you guys to share experiences, input, and helpful advice on how to deal with a difficult mother-in-law (or father-in-law).
For the sake of not hurting or ruining any relationships, I am not sharing the handles of people who gave input on this week's topic.
"Advice- If you tried and they are not respecting you/putting in effort either... Drop them like a bad habit."
"Setting appropriate boundaries firmly, yet with respect and love."
"Have your husband deal with his mom. Everything comes across much better that way."
"Be upfront and remain a united team with your spouse."
"JUST LAY IT ALL OUT. Boundaries. Sit down and have a convo."
"I know what this is like and all I can say is... whoever's mother it is needs to reign that sh*t in!"
"I tell myself that someday I will be a MIL, and having another woman in his life will be hard."
"Setting boundaries! Letting them know there are certain times when input isn't wanted."
"Rely on the Lord and don't hide uncomfortable situations from your spouse. This can cause unwanted tension. Stand firm in your belief on how to raise your children and don't back down from what you and your spouse have decided on how to raise your children. MIL and FILs are important and valued, but what's more important is that you and your spouse are on the same page and hopefully with that your spouse would have your back."
"How funny, I was about to say I'm not a mom but it's fun to hear what people say about parenting plus I just love everything about you. But this topic, wow. I have so much to say from a perspective of a MIL who really disliked me and honestly the feeling was mutual until she got sick with cancer and the last few months I believe God allowed us to find balance in our relationship. A simple thing as finding out I still balance a checkbook (which I still do to this day) bonded us to the point I was in charge of all of her finances until she passed. She trusted me that much. And less than 24 hours before she passed I balanced her checkbook. A simpole thing she needed in order to pass peacefully. I know, long story but my advice is to find SOMETHING... anything as stupid as it may seem to find in common that can bond you. I wish I had figured that out way before."
"This used to be me!!! At first my MIL was scary to me. She was VERYYY stand off-ish compared to my family in the beginning. When I was over at my husbands house (boyfriend at the time) she rarely talked to me... maybe "hey/bye". Where my FIL would literally talk my ear off. One day I finally talked to her about how intimidating she was to me. I know I texted her becasue she scared the sh**t out of me in person. She literally replied that she didn't want to be a monster in law and she would try to do better. Now we are really close, she never steps on my toes about anything parenting related or life choices (since I am a stay at home mom people tend to judge my career choices). So my advice is to communicate your thoughts and wishes towards her. If she keeps stepping over the line then try having the husband talk to her. If that doesn't work, then move away lol"
"I put myself out there and took the heat for 4 years and finally, I said enough. She has even gone as far as to question my son's paternity and now even says he's not her grandchild. I feel bad for my son not having that relationship but I also know it's not okay to have toxic people like that in our lives."
You guys, this was BY FAR the most responded to topic on this ATM series thus far. I want to take a second to say that I appreciate every single one of you who reached out to me, held conversations with me about this, opened up to me about this difficult topic, and gave honest and helpful input. I cannot imagine how hard this kind of situation must be and if gives me such a good perspective to hold onto for when I do become a MIL one day.
Thoughts for the next ATM series topic? Let me know! Always looking for great and helpful topics of discussion with you guys.
Blessings and Health,