Think mother-in-law and you instantly get an image of a disapproving woman, sitting on the sofa, ordering another woman – most probably her daughter-in-law – around. Blame Indian television for this, but we instantly associate a non-likable woman to a mother-in-law. And the same goes for the daughter-in-law too. She is this scheming woman who studied ‘break up families’ in school and majored in ‘make the husband choose you over his family‘.Well, we’re thankful almost none of it is true. We do have unlikable mothers-in-law but then we have nice ones too. We do have our fights but at the end of the day we both put up with each other because we are connected by the man we love. So dear mother-in-law, while we don’t necessarily hate you, or plot your murder in the night, here are 12 things we want you to know so that life can be easy for all of us.
1. Trust us:
Don’t shy away from telling me how things are done, just be open to the fact that I also know how to work it out. I might not be the expert hat you are, but I am learning. So trust me when I goof up, because I am still getting there.
2. Treat me as a person first:
I know you want me to be the ideal, but try connecting with me as a person first. That’ll definitely make things easier.
3. Be a good mom-in-law:
Not the perfect one, but a good one. Treat me the way you want me to treat you.
4. I am okay with sharing my man:
As long as it’s reasonable, I don’t mind sharing him. Just don’t expect him to always make a choice between me and you; give the poor guy a break.
5. I don’t hate you:
No, I really don’t. I might not love you as much as I love my own mom, but I respect you equally. So don’t assume that I am out to start a war.
6. Don’t listen to everything that your relatives say:
Relatives can be the biggest reason for most of our arguments. Don’t listen to everything they say and give me the benefit of the doubt.
7. Treat me like family too:
You expect me to treat you like family but you always seem to prefer your son to me. Treat me not like your own daughter, but like your son’s wife who also deserves all the love and respect that you expect her to give you.
8. We will have our differences:
You and I are two different people and often we are thrown together and expected to just forget about them. So let’s not ego battle over who is a better person and just agree to disagree.
9. I have my own way of handling my kids:
You might find it weird, or even wrong, the way I handle my kids but trust me, I know what I am doing. The same way your maternal instincts kicked in when you had your son, I know how to parent my kids too. I love the occasional advice, but don’t expect me to follow everything you did.
10. I know I have some faults:
Same as your son, I have faults too. And I would appreciate it if you came up to me and told me about them rather than broadcast it to your relatives and never let me know. Trust me, I do want to change what I can, and your pointing it out honestly and directly will make all the difference.
11. I have goals too:
Don’t downplay my goals just because you expect us to fit in a typical daughter-in-law mould. I could be working and still manage everything pretty well. Just give me a chance.
12. Your son has a mind of his own:
Not everything he does is because I have brainwashed him. Give him some credit and know that he makes up his own mind.