Christmas is already a stressful time for most mums.
You’re trying to balance out your big ideas and dreams for the perfect Christmas with the realities of your ability, budget and time limitations.
Then on the big day, when you should be enjoying the wonders of the holiday season and the joys of being a parent, your mother-in-law comes along with the singular mission of making you feel like a failure. Yes, there’s nothing quite like the sharp criticism of a monster mother-in-law to make you wonder just why she keeps on being invited.
But family is family right?
Well, here are some tips anyway to help you survive her next visit this Christmas!
1. Make Her Feel Welcome
If she’s coming to stay get some brownie points straight away by making her feel really welcome in your home. Primp and prep your guest bedroom with clean fresh sheets, and all the home comforts you can think of. Ask your partner about her favourite perfumes and beauty items, and maybe include a little care package for her as a ‘home away from home’ present. After all, it’s the thought that counts.
2. Don’t Fight Every Battle
Mother-in-laws are well known for their ability to criticise everything that you do, but it’s important to remember that you don’t need to fight every battle. Of course, you should stand up for yourself, nobody wants to be a pushover after all. But sometimes it really is better to just bite your lip. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, so say your piece about whatever it is and move on. Don’t let her suck you into her world.
3. Plan Your Day, But Let Her Help
Mums are often expected to pull the majority of the day together on Christmas, and if your mother-in-law it there you can expect lots of criticism masquerading as advice. So, although it’s important to have a plan of the day, talk to her about whether she would like to be involved. If there’s some side dish that she’s famous for, let her make it. Don’t let her dominate the event, it’s your party after all, but a little bit of ‘pity involvement’ might lessen the sting.