When it comes to building a good marriage with your husband to be it is vital that you not only invest in your relationship with him but also in your relationship with his parents. Investing in your relationship with the in-laws will massively help the foundation of your marriage and will make it much easier for both sides of the family to merge as one. In order to get on the good side of your in-laws, you must know how to break into them individually.
Being in the good graces of your mother-in-law and making sure she understands and respects your perspective will help keep tensions low. Before you say, "I do," set aside time for a lunch, a dinner, or maybe even both, and get these important conversations out of the way.
There are a few topics that ought to be discussed and leave nothing as a presumption because dynamics change, people change, and we are pretty sure you know of some cases around you. So, meet her on a lunch date, sit somewhere away from the crowd, order your favourite beverages and food. Address these topics of conversation with your would-be mother-in-law.
If you’re lucky enough to have a close relationship with your in-laws or have known them for years, making conversation around the dinner table might be as easy as pie. But if you and your in-laws aren’t as buddy-buddy as you’d like, it can be hard to fill those awkward silences with anything other than generic comments on the weather and recaps of recent sporting events.
Whether you and your partner haven’t been together that long (so you haven’t had the opportunity to bond with your in-laws) or you don’t feel like you have that much in common, figuring out how to get the conversation flowing to find the things you do all love to talk about can seem like a daunting task. We’ve rounded up eight topics that are anything but boring—but are still fairly benign! —to help get the words flowing.
But what topics should this crucial conversation cover? What are the must-ask questions? We’ve got you covered as you prep.
Things That You Should Know
You surely don’t want to be the only one left out of a conversation when the family is together! Kick things off by having a conversation with your future mother-in-law about anything you should know about her son or daughter that you may not know already. She may be able to tell you about some funny stories from childhood that you've never heard before, and those are generally the hilarious tales that you'll never let your soon-to-be spouse forget.
Sit with her, and take out those old photo albums, laugh together and help her relive those happy memories. Slip in questions whenever you can!
Under no circumstances should you ever be rude or act in a snide way regardless how you are feeling that day. Nothing turns off a mother-in-law more than someone who is only polite at certain times and unpleasant at others.
Get to Know Her Better
As much as she will want to know what you are about, it is good if you show the same interest in her. Don't just be answering her question, show her that you actually want to get to know her more and be closer in any way that you can.
Ask for Her Advice in Life
Doing this will show her how much you respect and value her opinion. This will really make her feel like you appreciate her say and there is nothing better for a mother-in-law than knowing her future daughter in law actually wants to know her opinions on things that matter.
Food is always the number one way to reach someone’s heart and this especially applies to mothers-in-law. Notice what they love to cook and eat, and also ask them questions about their preferences in food. It can also work as an instant mood booster.
Show How Much You Care About Her Son
Ultimately, any mother just wants to make sure that her children are happy and well taken care of. Briefly mention how happy you two are and tell her about all of the fun times you’ve had since getting engaged – it will ease her mind. You can also mention the things you love about him, and how you two are working together as a couple to build your life. Just don’t overdo it or it may come across as insincere or fake.
Find Something You Two Have in Common
You can ask your husband for help with this. Surely the two of you have some overlapping interests, whether they be movies, gardening, fashion – whatever. Once you have figured out something the two of you share, bring it up to her. She will probably be very excited to chat with you about it, and it will help break the ice.
Know the Love Story
You two have just tied the knot, so your love story is short. But what about your in-laws? Encourage them to reminisce about how they met, how they got engaged, and their favorite memories from their wedding day. You’ll be surprised what you learn as they take a trip down memory lane.
Rituals & Traditions
Even if it isn’t holiday season quite yet, this is a great way to get a peek into your partner’s family’s rituals and traditions. This could be anything from their weekly Friday pizza night to the cake they serve at every family birthday, as well as the ways they celebrate holidays each year.
You have plenty of awesome characteristics, so let those shine through! Your future mother-in-law will love getting to know these wonderful aspects of your personality. Although it can be a very stressful situation, try not to worry too much – your relationship with your in-laws will grow over time.
Make it clear to her that while you're going to be the person who spends the most time with her child, they'll always be her No. 1—you're not pushing her out of their life. This will provide her with a huge hug of comfort.
Talk About Your Future Kids
While it may be uncomfortable, this is an important ground rule to set. Since there's a ring on your finger, your future mother-in-law may already be riding the kid train. Let her know that you'll open up the gates for baby talk when you and your partner are ready.
You can never ever go wrong with bringing gifts during an event, dinner or just a casual visit. The more personal the gift the better.
You Will Always Be Mom
Say it again and again: She'll always be your partner's mom, and there are certain things and roles that only a mother can do and fill. You're not trying to replace her in any way.
Last But Not Least: Thank Her
For what, you ask? For bringing your husband into the world! You want to make sure your MIL knows how thankful you are that she raised a wonderful man from the get-go. Making her feel appreciated and loved will help her warm up to you (if she isn't already!), allowing room for your friendship to blossom. Starting off on the foot of gratitude is not only respectful toward the woman who raised your spouse-to-be, but it's a kind gesture that definitely won't go unnoticed.