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Control freak?

Kanchan Maslekar on how to cope with the wife’s mother...

sex and relationships Updated: Jan 05, 2009 17:52 IST
Kanchan Maslekar
Kanchan Maslekar
Hindustan Times

Amit is an school friend. He’s always been lovable and sensitive, very popular among friends. Last week, he informed me that he was going through a divorce. His marriage of two years had ended.

Mention ‘interfering mother-in-law’, and more often than not, everyone assumes it to be the husband’s mother. Often, it also means the wife’s mother.

Amit complains, “My mother-in-law visited us regularly or she would call regularly to find out what’s cooking for lunch and dinner, the maid’s salary, the husband’s salary and other minute details about the house.”

He continues, “At times, women ruin the peace in their daughter’s homes and create problems for everyone.”

Having her way
The aggressive woman is used to having her way at home and is a complete control freak. So she does the same with her daughter, even though the daughter is now a part of another family. She believes herself to be the best decision-maker and involves herself in every small matter.

Darshana Pawle, a software engineer based in Hyderabad, says, “Parents interfere because children allow themto. I know some women who cannot take independent decisions and are still dependent on someone — in a majority of cases, their mothers.

Right from planning the menu for a family dinner to buying furniture for the house, they rely on their mothers’ advice.”

All of us need someone to talk things over with. Ideally, a couple should rely on each other. But husbands are getting busier and not available for minor decisions.

Talking it over
So, the wife has no choice but to seek support in her own family. Men should

check to see if they are guilty of this before pointing a finger at the wife’s parents.

A marriage counsellor feels one should talk it over with one’s spouse if one seriously believes that the wife’s mother is interfering too much in the marriage. The husband has to gently let her know that while he understands that the mother means well, she’s creating undue stress in his life.

The counsellor adds, “Be fair and make sure that your own parents don’t interfere in your family matters before passing judgment on your in-laws.” She cautions men against expecting their wives to abandon their mothers immediately.

She concludes, “Most interfering mothers want their daughters to be happy. So respect that. Just convince them to change their way of doing things.”

First Published: Jan 03, 2009 21:16 IST