Someone told me that she wants to marry a man whose mother is dead because she wants to escape the wicked mother-in-law palavar AKA Patience Ozokwor Syndrome. Rather harsh won’t you say? The poor woman is just expected to drop dead because of this kind of wish?
Funny enough, 7 out of 10 ladies would wish something like that, because they wouldn’t want to be in a situation where they’d have to steadily compete with their mother-in-law. The other 3 out of 10 (like me) would pray for a mother-in-law who would return their love. (I hope my future mother-in-law reads this).
But to be fair to the 7 out of 10, (judging from all the Nigerian movies I’ve seen), mothers-in-law always act as if you’re in a race and they have to win or you forced their son to marry you.
So this post is for future mothers-in-law, you have to calm down so your daughters-in-law won’t wish death upon you.
What to NEVER say to your daughter-in-law.
- Why is your house like this?
You have to remember, this is not your house. Yes, it’s your son’s but it’s not yours. If you don’t like the way the couch is, the way the plates are littered all over the kitchen and so on. Please keep it to yourself. I know it might be hard because you might actually just want to give a word of advice, but she might see it differently and feel pressured to have an immaculate home whenever you’re around. Don’t be surprised if she starts resenting your visits. I’m very sure there will be exceptions but until you’re sure she’s different, keep your opinions to yourself.
- So you will allow Junior do that, if he was my son I would…
Yes, they are your grand kids and you’ll obviously want them to grow up the right way. But putting your son’s wife’s parenting skills to question is totally not the right way to go about it. By the way, times are different. For example, many new generation parents refuse to spank their kids, that you used to spank yours and they turned out great doesn’t mean other forms of punishment won’t work. You can’t enforce such a law in somebody else’s home. She’s the mother of the family, she should train her kids whatever way she deems fit.
- When was the last time my son and grandkids ate?
Don’t criticize her cooking skills EVER! Your son eats her food and believe me he loves it. So you really don’t have any right to say anything or question her about her ability to keep HER husband or children healthy and nourished. If you have anything to say, swallow it with the dry jollof rice she prepared.
- I was there before you, I know what he likes
Oh really? How about you come and have his kids. Being a wife and being a mother are two different things and are both blessings. You are a wife and a mother, to your husband and kids, it’s a taboo to be a wife to your son too. You cannot do what your son’s wife does, so let her be. What if he has decided he doesn’t like the Okra soup you used to make him with the snail but he now likes it with fried fish like his wife does? Yes you were there first, yes you know what he likes, but come on momma, change is constant. Human beings are always upgrading. You will always be his Mum, but now, he has a Wife.
- It will be different when I do it:
Implying or hinting that something changed for the better when you came.
“The baby stopped crying when I carried him” or, “I told Imabong to do it like this instead of how you told her to and it’s better now…”
Making her feel inadequate or that everything works smoothly without her will only make your relationship with your daughter-in-law harder.
- Ah… Nne, you’re getting fatter ooh, take it easy
If you know it’s not a compliment, please don’t bother saying anything about her looks. Even if she asks, please just lie. You might be making an innocent observation but because her guard is so high up there she might just misread it for criticism. So save yourself the trouble and keep your opinions to yourself. That is unless you have a daughter-in-law like me, I’m the sweetest and I wouldn’t mind if you told me I was getting fat.
Oh and this also goes for troublesome sister-in-laws, butt out of your brothers’ wife’s business!
I wish you all a happy in-law relationship.
I am, @Lord__Nina
Views expressed are only those of the authors.
You may share your own views in the comments section.
NOTICE: You can now send us your articles and stories and get published right away. For more details click here.