Wednesday, April 20, 2011

04/20/11 - Leaving and Cleaving (part 4)

So many newly married couples face "issues" with family or in-laws (depending on who's talking). It makes me wonder, "How will I be as a mother-in-law?" I guess this post is just a wish list for how I hope to behave when my boys get married. I hope to help encourage that cleaving process, especially that first year.

Here's a post for a future me when I do become a mot
her-in-law (Lord willing):

1) Give grace! Grace that they don't deserve. They will hurt your feelings. They will step all over your heart. But give them grace! Remember what it was like those first couple of years of marriage. Let them be intentional about growing that bond with their wife. It may be hard, but give them grace upon grace upon grace.

2) Have no expectations...especially around the holidays! They are going to be juggling two families (in some cases 3 or 4 families with divorced parents remarried with new family units) and that is not easy! Plus, they may want to create some of their own new traditions. Don't let this bother you, Heather! The less demands you make the more they will want to be with you!

3) Keep your mouth shut! They may not want your advice. They don't need you to nit pick at them. They need to just have your support and encouragement.

4) Give them space to "cleave". Don't make late night phone calls. Don't stop by without calling. Don't intrude. Don't ask questions about things you don't need to know about. Just give them space!

5) Don't compare how much time they spend with your daughter-in-law's family. It's not a competition. Sure you may want more time with them, but give them space and when they ask what you want share your needs in a very honest way without adding guilt or manipulating them.

6) Pray, pray, pray! Cover and bathe them in your prayers. Pray that God will use everything and anything to help them form a bond that will lasts for as many years as God gives them life!
(By the way, 8 years ago I told John that I'd be honored to be his wife!)


Anonymous said...

I throughly enjoy reading your writing on leaving and cleaving and about being prepared for marriage. Very refreshing and helpful. It was an eye opener and it had a great amount of substance. You are a great example in acheiving what you have. Please do write more. Thank you. uk/indian

Heather Patenaude said...

More writing on what? Marriage?