This feels so strange to know that even in this 21st century, how mothers in-laws interfere in their child’s life. Whether you are a man or a woman, young or older, your mother will always interfere in your life and will try to control it. The funny and also concerning part is, it doesn’t matter if you are married or not, they’ll still interfere in your life. This controlling behavior leads to our today’s topic “How mother-in-laws ruin marriages?”
But when you ask a mother-in-law why they interfere in their child’s marriage? They will give you a reply that they care about them and only want good for them. But they don’t realize that in the name of becoming a caring mother, they are becoming toxic in-laws and forget how they are ruining the personal space of the couple. Even sometimes it affects a couple’s mental health.
It’s not that all mothers-in-law are toxic but if you got one what you should do? Can you do something about it or just ignore her responses? Well, ignoring won’t work. Today in this article, we will discuss what happens when a mother-in-law interferes in their children’s life and what we can do about it. So let’s just get into this topic.
1. How Mother-in-Laws Ruin Marriages
When we talk about marriage, it’s not just any relationship. It is a beautiful journey where two souls meet and build a life with care, love, and happiness. Have you heard the phrase ‘every coin has two sides of it’? Well, other than love and happiness, marriage comes with so many difficulties also.
One of the main challenges is the interference of the mother in laws in marriage. It has been a hot topic and an uphill battle among all the couples.
As said earlier not all the mothers in laws are toxic. Some are very good mothers and treat their daughters-in-law like a princess. But for many, it’s just a dream.
So let’s just explore this topic: how a mother-in-law oversteps boundaries and how it can ruin your marriage and what can we do to maintain healthy family relationships.
1.1. Interference and Snuffy Behaviour Towards Daughter-in-Law Relationships
Interference and snuffy behavior towards their daughter-in-law and interference in the couple’s boundaries are one of the common issues that arise in this relationship. They try to intrude on every personal matter with the child’s spouse and give unwanted advice, and not just that, they also try to force partners to make decisions according to them. These types of mothers in law also called monster in-laws.
All of these things lead to a communication breakdown between the couple and their marriage life gets into the wrong line. When a mother-in-law constantly tries to interfere in every matter of the couple, this brings a conflict to the whole family. Let’s look into what happens because of all this.
1.2. Misunderstandings Between Husband and Wife
Now when the mother-in-law interferes in a personal matter between husband and wife and tries to maintain control of them, it becomes so difficult for them to understand each other’s perspectives. And even more hard for the wife because she feels left out and gets afraid to say anything. Some husbands take their mom’s side which affects the marriage a lot, and mother-in-laws take advantage of that.
Fortunately, if you have a husband who supports you when you are right, you need to thank your God for this. But your problem didn’t end here. If the couple’s private matter gets discussed in front of the whole family, it hurts their feelings and they feel betrayed.
1.3. Sometimes Mothers in Law Become Jealous
In many of the cases, the mother-in-law feels threatened by her son’s new family, especially by the daughter-in-law. This jealousy leads to toxic behavior, emotional manipulation, and some aggressive actions.
Because of all this, both mother-in-law and daughter-in-law feel constantly competitive with each other. Such dynamics in the family create stress and strain relationships between the couple.
1.4. Doesn’t Value Opinion of Daughter in Law
This conflict you can see in every house no matter if the marriage is new or old, if a couple is living with their in-laws, they’ll go through this. Mothers-in-law don’t value their daughter-in-law’s opinions and criticize their perspectives also. This invalidation leads to a conflict that makes things even worse.
2. Toxic Mother in Law Emotional Blackmail Their Son
One of the common things toxic mothers do is emotionally blackmail their sons. Sometimes it can affect his well-being also. Which is not a great thing and the mother-in-law doesn’t even notice this. Here are some tactics that she used to emotionally blackmail and manipulate their son.
2.1 Mother-in-Law Uses Guilt Tripping Tactics
Yes, you heard it right, and definitely, some of you have seen this with your eyes. Sometimes toxic mothers-in-law use manipulative guilt-tripping tactics to control their son’s lives and decision-making.
They use emotional manipulation to make their son guilty and fulfill their desires, even if it comes at the cost of his happiness and mental health. She doesn’t care about it. Some sons observe that this is happening and understand that this is wrong so they sometimes be careful.
But for those who didn’t observe this, these actions can turn really into a mess and can leave the son feeling emotionally drained and it affects their emotional well-being.
2.2. Emotional Blackmail Techniques and Examples
As we said earlier, some mothers-in-law emotionally blackmail their sons and manipulate their decision-making to fulfill their desires. So if you are a guy who’s just married and doesn’t want this to happen. We are mentioning some ways your mother can emotionally blackmail you.
2.2.1. Playing the Victim Card
Sometimes it sounds funny how some narcissistic mother-in-law plays the victim card to gain sympathy and attention for their son’s life. She uses some phrases to say that leaves her son no choice but to support her.
This is one of the most used sentences by them, “After everything I’ve done for you, you don’t care about me anymore and hurt my feelings”. Of Course, after listening to this a child will get emotional and take her side. Which again comes into the way of his married couple.
2.2.2. Conditional Love
Yes, a mother indeed loves their children unconditionally but in some cases, this is different. After their son gets married they use love as a bargaining chip, so the son feels so comfortable and loved and they ask them to fulfill their wishes. Let me give you an example of what she might say, “If you loved me, you would do what I ask”. As a result, she gets everything by doing this.
2.2.3. Constant Criticism
Some mothers-in-Law even criticize their son’s choices or spouse, which undermines his confidence and causes him to doubt his decisions. And doubting their own decision might affect their mental health and well-being.
2.3. Threatening Relationships
Not only do they try to control their lives, sometimes mothers-in-law even threaten their son by saying that she’ll cut off his marriage if he doesn’t fulfill their demands. It puts immense pressure on him to submit to their wishes.
2.4. Impact on the Son’s Emotional Well-being
If you have a mother who uses these tactics to you and it feels normal to you, I think you should think twice about it. Because if you are not noticing it, all this is affecting your emotional well-being and mental health.
You might feel torn between loyalty to your wife and desire to please your mother. This conflict can lead to anxiety, stress, and sometimes even depression.
But we have talked about mothers-in-law for this, have we ever wondered why she does this? Let’s understand what she feels and what makes her react this way.
3. It’s Hard to Share Their Son for Mother in Law
We have talked about how the mothers-in-law behave so toxic, but now let’s understand why she does this. We know that mothers love their sons so much, and when they get married, mothers can feel left out. This leads her to behave toxic and manipulative and they don’t even realize that they are being toxic.
The real problem arises when someone tells her that she’s behaving toxic and she says that she’s not. Because she thinks her son is going away from her. Let’s go deeper and try to understand this
3.1. Competing Attention and Affection
A mother-son relationship has always been a beautiful relationship. Throughout The life of the entire family, the mother has always been on top of her son.
And when he gets married and his wife comes home, the mother feels threatened that the attention and affection her son used to give her, will no longer be there.
Mother has a fear that her daughter-in-law will replace her and snatch her son from her. Well, this will not happen if they talk about it and sort it out. I agree, it’s not easy as I said.
But if you wanna stop your family from turning apart, you’ll have to do this and you’ll have to do this in the right way. Otherwise, things will only get worse.
4. How to Sort Things Out
No one ever wants their family to get apart and if you wanna work things out and make a good relationship with your toxic mother-in-law and you. You’ll have to talk things out in a very mannered way.
I’m saying ‘daughter-in-law’ because most of the people who are reading this. Some mother-in-law will also read this but I don’t think she’s gonna make it this far after reading the above article.
However, our faith is just for everyone to make their peace in life whether you are a daughter-in-law or a mother-in-law. However, if you put some effort and understanding in your relationship you may make peace with each other. If you follow these steps mentioned below you can make peace with your in-laws’.
4.1. Lower Your Expectations
Whether you are a daughter-in-law or mother-in-law, you’ll have to understand that one will not react or make decisions according to you. Unrealistic expectations can give disappointment. So lowering your expectations is one of the first steps you need to take if you wanna make peace with each other.
Everyone has different kinds of mindsets and views according to the society they have been raised in. Judging and talking bad about each other will not make things better, it’ll do the opposite.
As soon as you understand this your relationship with each other will automatically become warm and friendly. And it’ll help you to keep good family dynamics.
4.2. Try to Make Peace by Honest Communication
Try to focus on the common things and interests you both have and talk about them. This will bring closeness to your relationship with each other. If you communicate your relationship will become healthier.
Whenever you experience tension with each other, consider having an open and honest dialogue.
Just share your feelings calmly and respectfully. Remember to use “I” whenever you are giving your opinion on anything. If someone is having different opinions it helps them to think about it once.
For example, if you are arguing instead of saying, “You always criticize my opinion about everything, and it’s not fair”, say “I feel hurt when you say things like this about me”.
Once you start doing all this your relationship with in-laws will nourish and it’ll become a stronger connection.
4.3. Set Boundaries With Each Other and Other Family Members
Setting healthy boundaries with each other is crucial to maintain any relationship. It’s important to have a conversation your boundaries clearly but don’t forget to be respectful.
For example, if you feel overwhelmed by any kind of restrictions and consent, kindly let her know that you need some personal space and balance between your own family and extended family time.
But always remember that setting boundaries is not about being confrontational or disrespectful to each other. It’s about safeguarding your mental health and maintaining a healthy relationship with each other.
4.4. Leave Your In-Laws’ House if Nothing Works
In some cases, whether you give your best effort or not, things just get worse and worse with time. Sometimes the differences are so huge that there’s nothing that can fill it with love and affection.
If you are living in the same house with your in-laws becomes a difficult battle and all attempts to resolve the issues have failed, it’s better you talk about it with your husband and leave their place and make your own home.
It doesn’t mean you just give up on your relationship with your in-laws, rather it’ll give you a chance to strengthen your marriage and you will have peace with your in-laws too.
In conclusion, marriage comes with a lot of challenges, and dealing with your in-laws undoubtedly is one of the biggest ones. It doesn’t mean that we have to be disrespectful to each other, there are ways it can be fixed. You can talk about it with some respect and set boundaries in between. But not in every case it’ll work and for that, you’ll have to take some extreme steps but not the disrespectful one.
Because if you’ll be disrespectful to your in-laws it will not just be unethical but your husband will also get hurt. Many mothers-in-law when they behave toxically they think they are being careful about their children. So if you tell them in a mannered way they might listen to you and understand you.
However, if none of this works it is better to leave their house and make a new one. It’ll help your relationship on the good side. So if you are going through such a situation, try to resolve the issue and if they don’t, you know what to do.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Do Couples Divorce Because of In-laws?
The answer is, not certain. Relationships can get worse between you and your in-laws but there’s not a high chance a couple can divorce because of this. However, in some cases, it might happen if things between husband and wife don’t sort out. So it’s better you talk with your spouse before things get out of hand.
Q2. How do I keep my husband away from my mother-in-law?
You don’t need to keep your husband away from his mother, if you do this you’ll look like the evil one and it’ll affect your relationship so much with your husband in a bad way. Don’t expect that he’ll prioritize you above his mother, it is totally unethical. If he is a good man he will treat both of you equally in the way he should treat.
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