This time of year almost every couple shares something in common – they will be visiting or hosting in-laws. We’ve gathered the five wives together to ask them to share their experience or helpful hints on the best way to enjoy, or at least tolerate, this special time with relatives.
Names have been changed to protect the innocent.
- Zip your lips. Seriously, biting your tongue actually tastes pretty good in the end. Leaving some things unsaid will help you keep your relationship with your spouse sweet. When in doubt of your ability to shut it up – find the nearest mistletoe and make out under it like teenagers, it will take your mind off whatever was bugging you and will horrify your mother-in-law.
- Be open-minded. Remember that the various ways of celebrating the holidays with family are not right or wrong…they are just different. Be open to making new traditions and keep a few of the old ones.
- Remember the time is temporary. While those couple of days together with in-laws may feel like an eternity, it’s important to remember the weekend will not last forever and there is an end in sight. Keep your eye on the prize!
- Fake it ‘til you make it. Does your sister-in-law drive you bonkers? Smile and remember your manners. Not a fan of the family custom of a traditional German spread? Find what you can stomach and compliment the cooks. Is your cousin a Chatty Chatterson? Keep eye contact, nod and start working on your mental after-Christmas shopping list.
- Dwell on the good. Remind yourself your significant other spawned from this lovely family, and you know he got his good qualities somewhere! Focus on the positive attributes of your in-laws and keep a good attitude.
- Turn on the charm. Say something good about your spouse to your in-laws. Nothing makes a parent glow more than hearing something great about their kid, no matter the age. You are basically saying to them: Good job raising this spouse of mine.