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5 ways to deal with your mother in-law

27 October 2015, 16:22 Shakila Alivitsa

Nairobi - First try to think of her as your own mother, then think of her as a very troublesome client that you have to run a very successful ad campaign on.

Don’t have a problem with a son taking care of the mother

Not very many parents can support themselves after they stop working in old age. Savings get depleted and that is when someone has to take over; the child. You cannot keep having an argument with your husband about him taking care of the mother because she will know. That causes a bigger rift between the two of you. She might have given it a chance in the long run but money issues never get solved especially if it is a need. So every time he spends, you get mad and she gets mad at you because you have an issue with it. Let it go because you cannot stop it, you can manage it but you cannot keep trying to cut off someone’s mother.

It is not the moment to point out all her faults just because she mentions one of yours

Old people are petty. I don’t know if it is because they now realize they have less time on earth so they choose to annoy the ones who will be left behind. Mothers in law are worse because now she has time to be in her son’s business when she comes to visit. You can only choose what you pay attention to. She does not like how you cook, get over it. She does not like how you look; she will get over it eventually. You cannot keep running to her son with such pettiness. She will stop when she sees you pay her no mind but let her know that it gets to you, it will never stop!

Consider doing things just the two of you and not because the son had to go visit

Check on her, ask after her, and make the effort to involve her in what you are doing. Not because your husband asked you to but because you just want to. That is how you turn it around. She sees that you are actually interested and not because her son forced you. If you make the effort and she does not relent then it is not you with the problem. At least you tried.

You can have disagreements but keep them at a bare minimum

You do not have to pick everything apart to show that she is the cause of all your problems or disagreements. If it can be ignored then ignore it because old people can be petty because they are just old. Leave the arguments for the things that actually matter like interference with how you raise your child not her wanting to eat something different from everyone else. Look at it this way, choose the latter argument and what will happen is that the son, your husband might end up in the kitchen trying to make his mother happy. Or you will end up doing it to diffuse a ‘situation’ either way, it will get done.

Your husband’s siblings also matter

Just because they are her children. Have an issue with one of them, you have one with her. I know family can be annoying. All I can tell you is that you will just have to try to get along especially if she is around. Don’t talk badly about one or try to tell her what another did. She will welcome the gossip but she will start to think that is what you tell other people about her children.

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Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

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