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How to deal with an intrusive mother in law

Family coming to visit this holiday? Here’s how to deal with meddlesome mothers in law



They say when you get married, you marry the family and not just the man – so you might want to put some effort into making your relationship with your mother-in-law one of mutual respect and understanding.


Prepare yourself to prevent your mother-in-law’s visit from turning into a power struggle between the two of you:


1. Set the boundaries:

Is she always dropping by unannounced? Does she have a key to your house? Let her know that it’s more convenient for your family if she arranges a visit – or even just calls – beforehand.


2. Form a united front:

Don’t make it about you versus her. Respect your husband’s relationship with his mother, but speak to him about his loyalty and responsibility towards his new family.


3. Be proactive:

Instead of just blaming and accusing her, come up with feasible solutions for making your relationship work. Say for example: ‘We appreciate that you spend so much of your time with us, but perhaps you should do something for yourself, like joining a book club?’


4. Be sensitive:

It can be tough to keep your cool when she’s trying to tell you how to raise your children or run your house, but remember that she’s probably just having a hard time separating herself emotionally from her son. Instead of saying ‘Don’t tell me how to raise my kids’, try ‘I’m just trying to raise them to be strong individuals like their dad.’



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