Have issues with your in-laws, or vice versa? Here’s some expert advice
Recently, a marriage portal conducted a survey to understand the kind of relationship that Indian men and women shared with their in-laws. Among those who participated in the survey, 100% men said that they wished to be treated as sons rather than sons-in-law by their father-in-law. Among the women, 60% said they wanted their fathers-in-law to support what’s right and correct the wrongs; while 40% men felt the same. The survey also covered several other aspects related to in-laws.
A difficult path
It’s a known fact that many people share a complicated relationship with their in-laws. Most of the times, at least initially into a marriage, the relationship is rocky. It might change with time, but the status quo may remain complicated more often than not. Clinical psychologist, Tanushree Bhargava says that one should try to initiate communication by forgetting what you have experienced with your in-laws in the past. She says, “This may be a first step of the rapport building process. Taking out time for them and initiating get-togethers, and trying to understand them might help them accept you faster. Respecting your in-laws can be a great step in developing a bond with them and keeping silent at times when a discussion could lead to a conflict.” Your spouse can also help. Adds Bhargava, “The spouse should try to become a link between his or her parents and you, and try to understand the causes of the friction.”
On the other hand, once your relationship with your in-laws improves, there is always a possibility that they may take lot of interest in your marriage. Some of them may not like this interference in their married life. Also, this may lead to your spouse getting influenced by his or her parents. So, how do you solve this issue? Relationship expert, Mary George Varghese says that the definition of too much varies as per individual. She says, “People don’t like interference by in-laws only when they put too much pressure on them to do things or when they lose their personal freedom. However, one should approach this situation practically and work on one’s emotional intelligence. Take out all prejudices from the mind as a person’s mindset is an important factor in a relationship. Try to understand your in-laws’ perceptions and open all communication channels with them.” At the same time, Varghese says that the in-laws need to make sure that they give enough space to their children post marriage.
Finally, at times, even if everything is okay between you and your in-laws, both set of parents may not see eye to eye. In such a scenario, there’s a lot that two partners in a marriage can do to calm down tempers. Says Varghese, “Newly-married couples should help their respective in-laws in knowing each other and connecting them more often. Problems arise in a relationship when you start to differentiate and discriminate on the lines of my mother, my father and his or her mother etc. What’s important is that married people see everyone as ours, only then can problems be solved one step at a time.”