Back in the day, when I was still an ardent fan of Nigerian movies, I used to think nagging mothers-in-law weren’t a reality but just a Nigerian stereotype. If you have watched a few of them, you have noticed how most of them are depicted as evil and a huge pain in the neck to their daughters-in-law.
Well, it’s been ages since I outgrew the desire to watch Nigerian movies however over the years, I have come to realise that distressing mothers-in-law exist in real life and some, worse than those portrayed in the movies.
Until today, I can’t comprehend the reason why these women, who are supposed to act like mother figures to their daughters-in-law, instead treat them like co-wives. Now, don’t get me wrong, I have met some precious mothers-in-law.
Harriet (not real name) is one of the unfortunate women whose mother-in-law has even made her think up the sickest of ideas like committing suicide. The only thing that keeps her moving is the fact her husband loves her so much and gives her reason to live.
“While Chris and I were still dating, my mother-in-law loved me so much but she suddenly changed when she came to visit for over 3 weeks. She would dictate on what food we should cook, what I should wear and so many other things claiming that she alone knows exactly what her son’s preferences are in almost everything,” she narrated.
Harriet of course wouldn’t doubt the fact that the mother to her husband knew her son quite well. However, rubbing it in her face rudely and throwing tantrums all over wasn’t the best way to express herself.
Chris’ mother would gossip about Harriet with the maid and call her all sorts of names however Harriet had a good relationship with her maid who would then tell her everything that was gossiped about her.
She tarnished Harriet’s reputation among relatives who hardly knew her, convincing them of how her son made the wrong choice to marry ‘that prostitute’ like she oftentimes referred to her.
Some women have had rather revolting experiences with their mother’s-in-law but these are people you just can’t get rid of but instead learn to live with.
It’s always good to communicate and put your issues on table together with husband and mother-in-law whenever she seems to be going overboard.
Do your best to make peace with them and always respect them even when you feel they don’t deserve it. If dialogue fails, try to minimize the interactions or having them come to visit for a long time by discussing the issue with your husband.
All in all, the mothers-in-law are people you can’t get rid of, you just have to learn how to live with them and accept them the way they are.