One day soon after we had our second child my husband asked me ,"Now that we have a son, what kind of a mother-in-law do you think you will make?" I told him that "Its very hard to describe. Even if I prepare myself to the best of my ability, there will always be a thin line in between". Though that was a very spontaneous response, it made me take a look into myself and probe me.
As in any relationship, this one also calls for lots of compromises. But like other relationships, this does not compel or demand for it, nor does it hapen naturally. It is always looked at as an option either to take it or leave it.
So this probe into myself made me write a letter to the mother-in-law in me, from the view point of daughter-in-law in me while I am still a daughter-in-law and a wife.
Hope everything is going on fine and smooth. But you reading this letter might also mean otherwise. So in case you are looking for help, here it is:
Please remember that every bride comes into her new family with an expectation to be accepted and seen as a part of the family. Girls in our society are usually brought up with the mentality of getting married and adjusting to the new circumstances. But, sadly nobody teaches/ brings up a mother-in-law and it all happens overnight. So be different and be prepared for those overnight changes.
Please do not treat her as an intrusion. If that's how you see her now, be ready to be looked at same as well. Because what you sow now is what you will reap later when you need people and peace.
Try to make conversations with your son through his wife. That will make her feel wanted and involved. Try to keep her in the loop for all decisions in the family as much as possible. That will make her feel important and understand the way the family works.
Never ever talk in secrets with your son in her presence. It's never going to help and would rather start repelling.
Make sure she is fed enough. Make her way to the kitchen through simple dishes she will be comfortable with. Offer help only if and when required. Otherwise you will be looked at as a supervisor keeping an eye on the ingredients used and its quantity spent. Try to leave her in a comfort zone as much as possible.
Trust and believe in her. Entrust some responsibilities by giving her valuables like family jewellery or emergency cash/keys. It will help strengthen the bond.
It's absolutely fine if she wants to sleep for an extra hour or two. You don't have to be strictly a mother-in-law by definition.
There will a significant change in time spent by your son with you. But isn't that how we wanted it to be in our days. So let it go.
Do not decorate her like a doll for family occasions just for the sake of showcasing her as your daughter-in-law. She has been dressing herself since her age and she knows better to make herself look nice and presentable.
Things keep changing with time. The speed at which things change also changes. There's always going to be a gap in the thinking process. Accept that and please don't fight against it.
Don't interfere in between her and your son; in between her and the kins unless and until invited. There will be trouble for sure one day if you keep interfering too much.
Most of all and finally, try to make most of the relationship because as in any relationship, there wil be a sweet nectar when prepared to make efforts and dive into the core.
ENJOY THE MOST AND ALL THE BEST