Most people have trouble getting along with their in-laws. As you are reading this, maybe your marriage has suddenly become a war zone because of the existing toxic relationship between you and your in-laws and you don’t see them eye to eye, you feel his family is rude and imposing.
Most times, you feel utmost resentment and wish that those in-laws of yours didn’t exist in the first place. My dear, you don’t destroy the whole house because a nail was wrongly inserted in the wall.
No, you look for ways to remove and restructure the nail so as to fit in perfectly into the wall. No matter how difficult you think your In-laws are my dear friend, nothing is too difficult for diligence to master.
The following are 4 best simple ways to deal with a toxic in-law.
1. Find a common ground.
Always try to find a common ground, it might be that your Partner’s parents are going to a certain church and you are going to an entirely different church. It might be that they are from a different tribe compared to yours. Those are differences that are difficult to ignore. But remember, you don’t have to be best friends with your in-laws or even agree with them.
What is important is finding a common ground. Don’t focus on what separates you; focus on what brings you together, our similarities bring us to a common ground; our differences allow us to be oppositions to each other. It can be something simple, like a certain food, a certain dress pattern etc. Make those topics and activities that you have in common the core of your relationship with your in-laws.
2. Be honest and yet tactful with your in-laws
You hardly get it wrong when you mix honesty and tactfulness in your dealings with your in-laws, now honesty here doesn’t mean you should report each and everything happening in your home to your in-laws, that is not honesty, that is foolishness! Remember, love is tactful, not just truthful.
Be honest with your personality, but tactful with your words and information you give out about your home. Don’t be a fake wife who will suddenly start washing her husband’s clothes anytimelll his mother is around, you are trying to score cheap deceitful points! Remember that there is nothing hidden under the sun, one day what you think is a secret will be laid bare in the open! That is not who you are! After all, you hardly do laundry for your husband on a normal day, so what changed?
3. Set necessary boundaries.
Life itself was designed with boundaries, that is why you cannot travel from Lagos to Cairo without passing borders, or demarcations! In your dealings with your in-laws you must set boundaries and abide by them judiciously, that will make your marriage a happy one. You should be able to set out rules of engagement for visitations, felicitations and even financial transactions with your in-laws, any other thing apart from that should be seen an abnormality.
For example, you can put a rule that for your in-laws to come visiting he or she should formally state his or her intention of the visit on the phone weeks before the actual date of arrival. There should be levels to the money and gifts you shower on them, do it because you are obliged to, don’t do it like you are being forced. Don’t ever put your in-law on a salary scale. Yes, do it out of your magnanimity. Even if it is a monthly ritual don’t tag it as a salary so as not to trigger any unhealthy entitlement mentality from your in-laws. The very day you don’t send, you might be vilified harshly and you wouldn’t want this trust me.
4. Learn to adapt to what you cannot change
Unfortunately, sometimes you really can’t teach an old dog new tricks. I will not come on here and deceive you, some in-laws are really something else! Some are a thorn in the flesh while some are stubbornly aversive to change, except with the timely intervention of the unchangeable changer (GOD) himself!! We have many of them like that, if his parents are that uncooperative and stubborn, then all you can do is accept that and figure out how to handle yourself. Adaption is one unique and special characteristic of humans. And trust me there is no place, situation, persons, you can’t adapt to. With the right mindset, personal training you can actually adapt without actually running mad!