The Holiday season has arrived! The red coffee cups are back, holiday sales are in full swing and Christmas songs are filling the radio airways. For some of our recently engaged couples, the holiday season may mean spending the season with your soon-to-be in-laws for the first time. This can cause some excitement, nerves, and stress, but The Wedding Guys are here to help and make sure that your time spent with the in-laws truly is the most wonderful time of the year!
1) Team Work: This will be the basis of all successful in-law relationships, work together with your partner. It is important to remember you are a team now and any conflicts you encounter with either side of the family should be dealt with together. If you can’t do this, the in-laws can quickly turn into “out-laws.” Being part of a team also means support. Never put your fiance in a situation where they have to choose sides between you and a relative, try to support their family relationships even if you have some differences.
2) Set the Standards: It is important to be open and honest with your spouse-to-be about your expectations of the in-law dynamics. Decide what is important and what is not. Talk about how you’re going to spend the holidays and other important family-related events so you both understand the expectations, and feelings aren’t hurt when assumptions are made. It’s also important to not make promises you can’t keep! Be upfront with your in-laws and the decisions you and your spouse-to-be have made about how you are going to spend these important family events. Communication is key!
3) Stay true to you: Don’t feel like you have to morph into someone you think your in-laws want… your soon-to-be spouse fell in love with you and that’s whom they want to spend the rest of their life with. Of course, you will need to compromise and be considerate, but in doing so be sure you stay true to yourself and stick to your guns!
4) Stay cool: If something comes up that rubs you the wrong way and upsets you, don’t let your emotions get the best of you. Give yourself time to cool off and consider their point of view. If you still feel the same way after giving yourself some time away from the situation, then consider talking to your spouse or in-laws about the situation after you’ve had time to settle down. Spare the trouble and skip the heat of the moment comments. Keep in mind, these are the parents of the person you love, how would you want them to talk about your parents?
5) Have Fun! Having in-laws is fun! You’re getting an addition to the family! Maybe it’s the big brother you never had or the large family get-together filled with light-hearted chaos, whatever it may be, focus on the positives of this new relationship. Having in-laws can become one of the greatest blessings in life, so cherish every moment and opportunity of this “getting to know each other” time period. Most likely you’re going to look back and laugh at how you were nervous to spend this holiday time together!