1. Limit your mother-in-law’s involvement in your life.
You have every right to roll up the “Welcome” mat and say “Game over” whenever anybody becomes toxic to your marriage or family. You, your spouse, and your primary family have the right to a peaceful existence, with the people in your circle, i.e. family, friends, and relatives, who support you and bring positive energy to your life.
Your in-laws are not entitled to any of the special privileges that come with being family if you are being disrespected and mistreated. You have every right to draw and maintain strong boundaries in protecting yourself and your marriage. Nobody has the right to make your life miserable. Only you can make sure of that.
How can you limit your mother-in-law’s involvement in your life? Define strict boundaries. Decide and communicate her firmly that you will not see her as often as up to now. In more severe cases, cut any kind of contact or limit it to the minimum. You have to be strict and committed to apply the rules that you have established.
2. Opt out.
Some in-law situations never get to a better place. Christina Steinorth said: “…just because you are married, you are under no obligation to be emotionally abused by toxic people.”
Friends would tell you to dump your boyfriend if your mother-in-law bullies you. If your MIL People would advise you to keep your distance and set limits. Just because she is your mother-in-law does not mean that you have to tolerate an abusive relationship.
It is not easy to make so dramatic choices, but if you do not respect yourself, no one will do that. Think: do you want to be a happy, respected person or a victim of abuse?
3. Practice a ‘healthy selfishness.”
Before you can take care of a situation, you need to take care of yourself. This involves not answering the phone when you know it is your mother-in-law or somebody you do not want to take to, excusing yourself from family gatherings for some quality “me time” and keeping your distance as a couple to take care of yourselves and your family, in spite of expectations, It is especially important at the holidays. When people practice this kind of “me” and “us” prioritizing that they reach their full potential, they start to be more respected and there is a chance to cure the abusive relationship. However, if the mother-in-law is a really toxic person, only cutting contact can help.
Think of an abusive relationship in your family. How could you improve the relationship by practising “healthy selfishness” and limiting their involvement in your life? Write your ideas down in the journal of success.
Author: Victoria Herocten Writer and coach.
Since 2009 she helps women with abuse to start over and how to be happy .
The co-author of the bestseller “Gratitude Book”.