woman with her mother-in-law

Christmas and Your Mother-in-law

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Christmas is the season for good cheer, fabulous presents, and a perfect time for your mother-in-law’s extended visit. So you did a cleaning dash and hired the best carpet fitters in Bristol to impress her with your flooring. Your house is ready, and your kids are excited to see their granny. But you are thinking about how you’ll make it through the holidays with her without feeling exhausted, annoyed, and stressed. It’s quite impossible to celebrate Christmas without your mother-in-law, so here’s how you can survive her Christmas visit without stress:

1. Give your in-law a red carpet welcome

Treat your mother in law as an honored guest and offer her the best bed, cleanest sheets, new curtains, and all the home comforts you can afford. Ask your husband about her favorites and spoil her with thoughtful presents. Surprise her with a bunch of roses, a bowl of fresh fruits, or a bottle of wine in her bedroom. Don’t forget to take her luggage to her room, especially if it’s on the second floor. However, don’t expect that you will get praised for your utmost kindness. She might not respond to your efforts, but at least you took the high road and played the role of a gracious host.

2. Accept that you don’t share the same family tradition.

Your mother-in-law has a differing view of almost everything- giving presents, table manners, budget, schedule, housekeeping, and child care. And even the responsibilities that you must do as the wife. Having your husband’s mom during Christmas can turn the festive season to a clash of culture if you fail to recognize your cultural differences. Ask your husband about his mom’s family rituals and values so that you can keep misunderstandings at bay.

3. Spend time with your mother-in-law

Don’t avoid conversations even if her stories equate to eternal boredom. Make her feel that you are interested in talking about her hobbies, career, or anything about her life. Give her sincere compliments about her perfume, new haircut, or youthful appearance. She might criticize almost everything that you do, but remain polite and change the topic if you feel the tension.

4. Have a break

calm park during summer

Your mother-in-law is staying for about ten days, and you don’t want to count the hours from Christmas to New Year. Embark on a regular and separate activity to set a physical boundary. Doing so will lessen the strain on one another and will make the table talk at dinner more enjoyable. Go for a walk around the neighborhood, a stroll in the park, or take a deep breath outside to recharge.

Your husband’s mother is a significant part of him. While her holiday visit includes endless to-do lists, it’s much better than unannounced visits. You can plan, buy household supplies, deep clean your home, and cook her favorite meals to make her feel that she is welcomed. Whether your mother-in-law is naughty or nice, your Christmas doesn’t have to be miserable. Give her a warm welcome, shower her with kindness during her stay, and take the break that you need. Remember that her visit is temporary. She will eventually go home, and you can finally take off your halo.

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