Commonly, many couples face turmoil in their marriage due to poor relationships with their in-laws. In 2013, statistics revealed that 11% of separated couples blamed their divorce due to poor relationships with their in-laws. Although this number isn’t remarkably high, it’s still alarming since a marriage should never end due to poor relationships because of outsiders (of the marriage).
In life, it is never good to have a spoiled relationship and as we age this becomes truer. As human beings, most of us strive to live lives that are uplifting, rewarding and wholesome. We want to be remembered for the amazing things we did in our lives, not the mishaps we may have made along the way. One way to ensure that our memory lives on with positivity is by repairing and building upon any broken relationships that may exist.
If you’re facing difficulty in repairing your relationship with your in-laws, but genuinely want to resolve matters, we offer the following suggestions below to make this much easier:
First understand how your relationship with your in-laws affects your marriage
- Your spouse may feel hurt or think that you do not value his / her parents enough
- Family time, such as holidays, may be tarnished due to poor relations
- Kids may be affected and feel negative emotions
- Feelings are hurt and lines of communication can be misunderstood
Ways to improve your relationship with your in-laws
In order to limit the amount of stress put on your marriage due to poor relationships with your in-laws, follow the advice below and see how to strengthen your relationship with your in-laws:
- Allow yourself to forgive and move on – holding feelings of anger or resentment will only hurt you, not the person causing the pain. Allow yourself to be free from pain and move on to factors that are much more important and valuable in your life.
- Instead of taking offense, perhaps try to comprehend their position and delicately explain yours. Of course when upset, communication skills can suffer. Prepare yourself before having any kind of conversation by reminding yourself to always stay calm and spend a moment thinking and processing before offering a reply.
- Decide to put what was done in the past behind you – Come to an agreement that what was done or said in the past will remain there; not to be discussed or used again in later conversation. This will help to heal with the pain that may have been caused by allowing you to feel free from the matter and its potential for affecting you again.
- Begin to move forward by building on your relationship – When the timing is right, begin to slowly build upon your relationship with your in-laws. Perhaps by inviting them to a family function or a small gathering at your house.
Although in life we will encounter poor relationships, it does not mean that every relationship is unrepairable. Oftentimes, if clear lines of communication can be opened and a feeling of compassion can be felt, many of our relationships have the ability to stand the test of time.