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MERRY CHRISTMAS

 

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Your mother-in-law takes over the kitchen at holiday time. So what? Your father-in-law drinks too much and sulks in the corner. Big deal!

 

Don’t let in-laws ruin your family holiday, multiply your stress, and leave you feeling defeated or angry. There are some simple strategies you can use to get along with difficult in-laws this holiday season.

 

Doing so will make your holiday get-together more pleasant. But there’s an even better reason to make peace with in-laws.

 

 

In my long-term study of married couples, when a husband or wife fails to get along with the in-laws, it’s predictive of marital unhappiness down the road. On the flip side, in the happiest marriages from my study, both spouses reported that they felt close to, or at least got along with, their in-laws.

 

Here are some ways to avoid adding in-law stress to your holiday season — and potentially harming your marriage.

 

1. Expect the minimum.

 

Don’t expect praise, warmth, and approval from your partner’s family. Transform into a gracious host and treat them as honored guests. They will either respond or not, but you won’t care.

 

2. Let them help.

 

Ask your father-in-law to build a fire. Ask your mother-in-law to make or bring her favorite dish. People like to be needed, and it gives them a way to contribute.

 

3. Be a reporter.

 

One of the best ways to keep conversations light is to ask questions and get your in-laws talking — about their work, childhood, hobbies, etc. People love talking about themselves.

 

4. Blend traditions.

 

Ahead of time, ask your partner to describe family rituals — such as special prayers, toasts, foods, or after-dinner games or activities — and surprise your in-laws with one of their favorite holiday rituals.

 

Read in Full:

http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2013/11/30/7-tips-for-managing-in-law-stress-during-the-holidays/

 



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