Word to Weiss is a new feature column that will allow readers to seek advice anonymously. Readers may write in for advice on family, love, relationship, career or just life in general. A letter or two will be chosen each week to be answered and featured in Blanco County News. Please email your letters to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Summer is almost over and I thought I had escaped with an In-Law free season. Well, I thought wrong! My husband recently told me that his parents invited us and our three kids to their new lake house before school starts. Although I think the kids would have a blast and my husband would love spending time with his Dad fishing; the idea of spending a weekend with his mother nauseates me!
There is no doubt I will go on this trip, but how do I keep my sanity and manage to enjoy myself as well?
Avoiding the In-Laws
Dear Avoiding the In-Laws,
Whoever said that when you marry, you also marry the entire family...was no dumby!
I commend you for recognizing the good that will come out of this trip; your kids having a blast, your husband fishing with his Dad. Women are notorious for putting their feelings and needs on the back burner. I’m glad you are asking about this, as many women have similar concerns.
First of all let your husband know how you are feeling. In your sweetest and calmest voice let him know how excited you are for him and the kids to see his parents. Also let him know the anxiety that builds up just being around his mother. Letting him know this ahead of time will hopefully make him be more aware and notice when you need quiet time to yourself. Also, pack an extra bag filled with a weekend project. Pack that scrapbooking material you’ve been putting off. Who knows, maybe you will find that your mother in-law is not so bad when you have a project to work on together. For example, give her the job of putting together “little Suzie’s” soccer season pictures from last year.
Last but certainly not least, remember that the only person you are in control of in this situation is yourseslf! You may not ever be able to change your mother in-law or anyone else for that matter, but you can be in control of how you let people affect you.