Here’s how to deal with the in-laws

As a mar­riage por­tal con­ducts a sur­vey about in-laws, we speak to ex­perts about the com­plex­i­ties of such a re­la­tion­ship and how to have a smooth tran­si­tion af­ter your wed­ding

Hindustan Times (Patna) - Live - - Htcity | Lifestyle - Collin Ro­drigues­drigues@hin­dus­tan­

Re­cently, a mar­riage por­tal con­ducted a sur­vey to un­der­stand the kind of re­la­tion­ship that In­dian men and women shared with their in-laws. Among those who par­tic­i­pated in the sur­vey, 100% men said that they wished to be treated as sons rather than sons-in-law by their fa­ther-in-law. Among the women, 60% said they wanted their fa­thers-in-law to sup­port what’s right and cor­rect the wrongs; while 40% men felt the same.


It’s a known fact that many peo­ple share a com­pli­cated re­la­tion­ship with their in-laws. Most of the times, at least ini­tially into a mar­riage, the re­la­tion­ship is rocky. It might change with time, but the sta­tus quo may re­main com­pli­cated more of­ten than not. Clin­i­cal psy­chol­o­gist, Tanushree Bhar­gava says that one should try to ini­ti­ate com­mu­ni­ca­tion by for­get­ting what you have ex­pe­ri­enced with your in-laws in the past. She says, “This may be a first step of the rap­port build­ing process. Tak­ing out time for them and ini­ti­at­ing get­to­geth­ers, and try­ing to un­der­stand them might help them ac­cept you faster. Re­spect­ing your in-laws can be a great step in de­vel­op­ing a bond with them and keep­ing silent at times when a dis­cus­sion could lead to a con­flict.” Your spouse can also help, adds Bhar­gava, “The spouse should try to be­come a link be­tween his or her par­ents and you, and try to un­der­stand the causes of the fric­tion.”


Once your re­la­tion­ship with your in-laws im­proves, there is al­ways a pos­si­bil­ity that they may take lot of in­ter­est in your mar­riage. Some of them may not like this in­ter­fer­ence in their mar­ried life. Also, this may lead to your spouse get­ting in­flu­enced by his or her par­ents. So, how do you solve this is­sue? Re­la­tion­ship ex­pert, Mary Ge­orge Vargh­ese says that the def­i­ni­tion of too much varies as per in­di­vid­ual. She says, “Peo­ple don’t like in­ter­fer­ence by in-laws only when they put too much pres­sure on them to do things or when they lose their per­sonal free­dom. How­ever, one should ap­proach this sit­u­a­tion prac­ti­cally and work on one’s emo­tional in­tel­li­gence. Take out all prej­u­dices from the mind as a per­son’s mindset is an im­por­tant fac­tor in a re­la­tion­ship. Try to un­der­stand your in-laws’ per­cep­tions and open all com­mu­ni­ca­tion chan­nels with them.” At the same time, Vargh­ese says that the in-laws need to make sure that they give enough space to their chil­dren post mar­riage. She says, “To give away the au­thor­ity one has on an­other per­son’s life is al­ways dif­fi­cult. Of­ten, par­ents fail to un­der­stand that this trans­fer of au­thor­ity is an im­por­tant step in de­vel­op­ing in­de­pen­dency among their chil­dren post mar­riage. Par­ents should con­sider their mar­ried son or daugh­ter as sep­a­rate units and al­low them to take their de­ci­sions in­de­pen­dently. And, like the way they plan for their child’s wed­ding, par­ents should plan for a life post the child’s wed­ding as well.”

Fi­nally, at times, even if ev­ery­thing is okay be­tween you and your in-laws, both set of par­ents may not see eye to eye. In such a sce­nario, there’s a lot that two part­ners in a mar­riage can do to calm down tem­pers. Says Vargh­ese, “Newly-mar­ried cou­ples should help their re­spec­tive in-laws in know­ing each other and con­nect­ing them more of­ten.

Par­ents should plan for a life post their son or daugh­ter’s wed­ding as well. MARY GE­ORGE VARGH­ESE, RE­LA­TION­SHIP EX­PERT


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