It's time to dress up the kids, straighten up the house and prepare the perfect dinner; your in-laws are coming to town. So how are you going to deal? Maybe put a sign on your forehead that says "Only supportive comments allowed"? No, that was last visit, and it didn't work.
As member Lana confesses: "Christmas is coming, and I feel my patience wearing very thin. My MIL has planned our whole holiday. I just want her to back off. Unfortunately, DH is an only child, so we have to deal with her constantly." -- iVillager lana2
We all hear you loud and clear, Lana. So much so that other members have rallied together to find solutions to create more peaceful visits with their in-laws (especially around holiday time). Make sure to print a copy of this article for your mate, so he doesn't jump up in shock when he sees you and his mother actually getting along!
Stand United with Your Mate
"Your mate should be the one to make it perfectly clear to his family that when they hurt, bad-mouth or dismiss you, they are also hurting him." -- iVillager ppsuep
Escape with a Secret Code
"One thing we have done in the past is create a secret word. If either of us says it to the other, we gather the kids and take off for a bit. It means the stress level is maxing out and we need some alone family time. This secret code can be used as a perfect getaway, even if you were to take a walk around the block together." -- iVillager marthajr
Use a Little Visualization Therapy
"Use the power of 'mind over matter.' Before the big date with your in-laws, visualize the kind of scenario you would prefer. Do this as often as you can throughout your day." -- iVillager Michael
Laugh Out All Frustrations
"Whatever your in-laws say or do, don't let it get to you. Instead, try and laugh at their unsuccessful attempts to control you. If you look at it that way, the situation is really pretty amusing." -- iVillager mfleming
Learn Their Culture
"Sometimes it is good to learn about the cultural expectations of one's in-laws. Each culture has its own expectations. Also, each religion has its traditions and again expectations. This may be a good place for both sides of your extended family to learn what is expected. Then maybe you can combine and compromise to make your whole family comfortable." -- iVillager carang
Communicate and Respect
"One part of the problem with in-laws is lack of communication and reading between the lines. One thing goes wrong and everybody gets all defensive and starts assuming things about their in-laws. Most people I've encountered neglect to treat others as they themselves would like to be treated. Would you like your in-laws to give you some respect? Then show them some respect. Do you want to be listened to? Then listen to them too. Is there a situation or behavior that you are not able to accept? Compromise!" -- iVillager lucy34
"Keep holding your head high; I know it hurts when people are so thoughtless. And it's hard to tell if they even realize how hurtful they are to you. Come back and post/vent about it at the Dealing with In-Laws message board. We are always here for you. It really does help to chat about your in-law problems with others." -- iVillager