ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

A Wife's Guide to Dealing With and Liking Your In-Laws

Updated on May 29, 2012

Everyone seems to dread the idea of in-laws. The overbearing, intrusive, controlling parents of the person you want to spend the rest of your life with. They have been known to break up marriages, be the root of arguments and generally be an obstacle in your marriage. But is this fair?

Parents love their children and want to protect them no matter how old they are. That is the job the parent takes on the day a child is born. And it can be very difficult for some parents to believe that anyone can love their child as much as them. It’s difficult to let them go. Before you start getting all critical of your in-laws, remember your parents are going through the same thing and someday you will be as well.

I am blessed with a great set of in-laws and when my step-son married in 2010 I became a mother-in-law myself. I am in a unique position to offer advice. Being on both sides of the equation, I have been able to figure out a few tips and tricks to make things in our family run a little more smoothly.

Respect Your Elders

Your new mother and father in law have probably been around a while. They have been through their own relationships, good and bad, and many years of life experience to draw on. Listen to what they have to say. Understand that they are trying to share the benefit of experience with you. If you can be respectful to them, let them know that their opinions are valuable, it will make you that much more accepted in to your new family.

Don’t think you have to agree with everything they say. You are still your own person and you know what is going to work well for you and your spouse. But that doesn’t mean you need to be rude and completely discount what they have to say.

And don’t forget, they have more history with your spouse than you do. They can actually help your relationship if you give them an honest chance. They are not the enemy, and neither are you. You don’t have to be best friends with your in-laws, but being amiable and polite will go a long way. Remember to actually talk to them, hear what they say and if you disagree you always have two options: disagree while still making it clear that their opinion is valid, or just keep it to yourself.

In-Laws Can Be Entertaining

They Don’t Have to Live With You, But Don’t Cut Them Out of Your Life

Family is important. They are the ones that will always be there for you. Never forget that blood is thicker than water, and for a parent to feel like their child is being taken from them. I went through this with my step-son. I tried to be nice to daughter-in-law, treating her as I treated all of my family. In return, she would say and do things that gave me a clear indication that she wanted to be the only person in my step-son’s life.

My husband has always made it clear that his family is the most important thing in his life. He instilled the same value in his son. I have never tried to stand between my husband and his family. I try not to make him choose between him and me. By contrast, it feels that is exactly what my daughter-in-law is doing. And what makes it worse is that she claims that family is so important to her.

I do what I can to keep the peace. I have not confronted her about this situation, about the disrespect she has shown or about how she has made me feel. (Instead, I passive-aggressively write articles about it.) I would rather keep these hurt feelings to myself, rather than let her actually drive a wedge between my step-son and I. He knows I am always here, and if he needs me I will always do all I can. I just hope one day she grows up enough to understand what she is doing wrong.

Knowing how she has made me feel, I can’t stand between my husband and his family. If they need him, I will let him go to them. In all honesty, I live within about ten miles of my in-laws. We see them on a constant basis. Trust me, there are times I really want to be selfish and force my husband to spend his time with just me rather than the whole family. But I really don’t want to be the source of animosity.

No, things have not always been perfect with my in-laws. I would talk to my husband, not asking him to change anything but hoping he would see it and understand my frustration. And he did. We work on compromises so that he can have time with them and then we have time with each other.

Sometimes There Is Nothing You Can Do

All things being equal, there is no reason you can’t get along with your in-laws. Of course, things are not always equal. Sometimes you have to deal with someone who is especially obstinate and is not interested in building a happy relationship with the new addition to the family. This is how I feel about my daughter-in-law. I have two options: 1.) complain and go out of my way to make her feel that she is not welcome; or 2.) keep my opinions between me and my husband and be the better person. I don’t necessarily go out of my talk to her, but I don’t completely ignore her either.

The best you can do is to take the high road. Remember to treat them with respect and don’t try to create problems. In the end, they will be the one that is seen as the antagonist, prodding you in to confrontations. And I can tell you, nothing will irritate them more than you remaining calm, cool and collected.

One Thing to Never Forget

Your spouse chose you. They want to be with you, that’s why they married you. They can’t help the way their family is. You can’t expect them to turn their backs on their family just to make you happy. Be understanding and always strive to be the better person. Some are lucky to have in-laws that welcome you in to their family. Other are cursed with the monster-in-laws who will never see anyone as good enough. But what you have to hold on to is the love between you and your spouse. That is what is important. And if all else fails, you have forty-nine other states to choose from for your new home.

Have you picked up any tips or tricks in dealing with in-laws? Leave me a comment to share your experience.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Going through this situation but its the mother and siblings against me, smh, thanks for the advice, I will not give up on my husband! :)

    • Angela Brummer profile image

      Angela Brummer 

      6 years ago from Lincoln, Nebraska

      Really great article. I have a different spin on this one and a great hubber son of matt also has one if you would ever like to read them? Great contribution!

    • AmandaLynn319 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Southern Idaho, US

      I agree, every situation is different. I've learned a little respect goes a long way. Most people just want to know you respect what they say, whether you agree or not. There is no one size fits all relationship advice.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 

      6 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      An interesting view on "in-laws".Every situation is different and so are people. The approach to handling others depends on a variety of factors. I agree that family comes first.

      Giving this a vote up!


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)