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Many people are caught up in the web of choosing between their family and their lovers. They tend to hang on both parties which unknowingly might not favour one of the parties. Your partner or spouse is very important, so also are your blood relatives. You basically spend more than half of your life time with your spouse but you cannot disregard those who gave birth to you, gave you the foundation of life and through which you got socialized. You would not have the love of your life if not for your mother. At the same time, it is your family members that will push you out to survive, have a partner and they are the one to bestow marital blessings unto you. When married, your partner will assume the responsibilities of your parents and relatives.
Both parties are equally important. Equal respect, obedience, attention and audience should be given to them. As an adult, you should know when to draw the line between the relationships and in cases of interference. The holy books command us to obey and respect our parents and at the same time to love, cherish and respect our spouse. This depicts that the Holy Book has laid down the principle of equality between the family and partners.
The first issue that always brings confusion in handling the relationship between parents and partners is in the aspect of partner selection. Some parents can so much dictate, interfere and influence in the choice of their child’s life partner. They give rules as to who they want as in-laws. They tell their child the tribe, educational level, religion and social status they want him/her to marry. These parents kick against marriage plans if a child acts against their wish. Some even go to the extent of arranging spouses for their children so as to strengthen friendship and business bonds. Wisdom and caution should be applied in such cases like this.
You should not ALWAYS accept nor reject your parents’ opinion, especially in the choice of future partner. Do not be forced into marrying someone you cannot be happy with or someone you cannot guarantee a bright future with. Parents can be right some times because they have the experience of which we do not have. If your parent kicks against your partner and they give you cogent and reasonable reasons for their actions, you should try and reason with them to an extent. If you are not loved by your potential in-laws, find your way into their hearts by going through their child, which is your partner. Their love can also be bought with prayers. Do not be stingy to your future in-laws. If you think bribing them will open ways for you, go ahead with it. If you find it hard to make them love you or if they are very adamant in their decision against your union despite the steps taken, it is advisable to leave the child because things will not be easy as they may frustrate you and make you regret the relationship. There must be mutual love between you and your in-laws because they serve as the bridge between you and your partner in the relationship. They settle disputes and you can make your partner do what you want through them.
Problems can arise when mothers or in-laws are living in the same house with you. It is advisable to not allow any family members (except in cases of children given birth to in or outside the relationship) live with you for the first few months or years of your marriage. Allowing parents and relatives to move in with you at the early stage of your marriage can be unhealthy for your relationship. This is because the early stage of marriage is known to be turbulent period where patience, love and perseverance are being tested. It is a time to know each other and to cope with various differences. Having a relative around can make the problems bigger. Wrong advice can be given to both partners these can make the marriage crumble if care is not taken.
In situations where you cannot avoid housing a relative member, a balance should be made. Equal attention and care should be given to everybody in the house. Do not allow your mothers to enter the kitchen if your wife is hale and healthy. Do not make your relatives your confidant when your partner is there for you. The wife should make her in-laws visits memorable and at the same time short. Am not saying you should drive them out with actions or with your words. But, make sure they do not stay for a long period of time if there is no need to do so. Let there be a gap for the sake of mutual respect. Master bedroom should not be turned to visitor’s room where people go in and out. There should be privacy in the house. All these should be discussed and agreement to terms should be made before marriage.
Present your spouse well in the presence of your family members. On the other hand, respect your parents and other relatives in the presence of your spouse. If you are rude to your partner, other people will do more to them and vice versa. Do not report discouraging words to both your partner and relatives. Settle any form of strain or disagreement and find a way, by all means to encourage consensus. Stand up for your spouse always and when you are with your parents. Let them know his or her worth. Do not allow your siblings or young relatives treat your partner anyhow and vice versa. Let there be a smooth relationship and create a family-like relationship between both parties.
Do not run to your family when you have issues you can handle. Do not make reports of how you do things or run the affairs in the house. Do not tell them the gifts you buy for your partner or how you handle your finances. When you have a running mouth or when you keep telling your family members every detail, they might want to poison your mind or make you leave the marriage, especially if they never for once liked your partner. Do your things in private. They do not need to know many things.
Appreciate your parents and family members. Do not abandon your parents because you are married. You and your partner should always reach out to your family members with cash, gifts and words of encouragement. Frequent visitation should be made to your family house with and without your kids. Let them know you love them the way you do love your partner.
If you find yourself dating a momma’s boy or girl, tell them what you want and what they should drop for things should work out in the relationship. Things should not be left unsaid till the future. Respect their parents and do not be rude to those they cherish. The points discussed in this write – up should be put into actions. Start building your marriage now( you can read about tips to maintain your relationship)
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Wish you Good luck
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1 thought on “Striking a Balance Between Your Spouse and Your Family”
Very helpful write-up.
However how do you settle disputes between your spouse and family especially when your family threatens to disown you for choosing sides