Wondering how to deal with a difficult daughter-in-law? You have some options. A kind heart and some gentle strategy could go a long way.
Table of Contents
1. Reflect on How You Treat Her
Have you given much consideration to how you treat her? You may not have noticed that you’re still acting like the primary female in your son’s life. Guess what? He got married, and it’s no longer about you.
Think back and look for instances when you may have dismissed her opinion or made her feel insignificant in some way. It’s each to slip into such behaviors because you have some feelings of jealousy toward her as well.
2. Invite Her to Spend Some Quality Time With You
Her cool attitude might be rooted in feeling excluded. She may even be shy and uncertain about how to initiate a relationship with you. Feelings of stress and even dread in regards to a mother-in-law are not uncommon.
Building a relationship relies on actually nurturing one. Think back and ask yourself what your interactions with her have been like?
Was she simply treated as a conduit to reaching your son or grandchildren? Did you engage with her as a person worth knowing in any meaningful way?
An invitation to do something fun with you that does not involve your son or grandchildren could begin to heal past mistakes.
3. Avoid Criticizing Her
Although you may not criticize her to her face, you may be voicing unpleasant comments about her to your son, your husband, or anyone who will listen.
You should extract yourself from this negative quagmire. You’re training your brain only to see her in a bad light.
4. Ask Her What Her Concerns Are About You
If possible, attempt to have a calm conversation with her about what is bothering her about you. Preventing this from becoming an argument is very important. Introduce your concerns gently.
5. Don’t Compare Her to Your Other Daughters or Daughters-in-Law
If you have other daughters or daughters-in-law, you probably compare her to them. This behavior will make her defensive.
She likely can see the positive relationship that you have with the other women. This awareness can cause her to feel insecure and uncertain about how to act around you.
She may resent feeling like she has to compete for your favor and react by pushing you away.