November 29, 2012

Son-in-law vs. daughter-in-law

Research Shows That Charming Your Wife's Parents Helps Make a Marriage Last.  The Power of the Son-in-Law

Dr. Orbuch, with funding from the National Institutes of Health, is studying 373 same-race couples who were between the ages of 25 and 37 and in their first year of marriage when the study began in 1986. …In couples where the husband initially reported being close to his wife's parents, the risk of divorce over the next 16 years was 20% lower than for the group overall. Yet when the wife reported being close to her in-laws, that seemed to have the opposite effect: The risk of divorce with these couples was 20% higher.
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Want to improve in-law relations in your family? Here are some tips from Dr. Orbuch.

If you are a parent of a daughter, be open to bonding with your son-in-law. You are probably from different generations and backgrounds, but you can still find common ground. It will make your daughter happy to see this man is a cherished member of her family. Be practical, though. A father- and son-in-law will rarely be as tight knit as a father and son.

Parents of a son, tread carefully. Your daughter-in-law is probably more sensitive to meddling than a son-in-law would be. She may perceive interference when none was intended. Or maybe you were intruding a bit.

If you are a wife, be aware of the need to maintain boundaries with your in-laws—especially when sharing details about your marriage, parenting decisions or personal issues. Reassure your in-laws that you want a close and loving relationship, but learn to say no. If conflict arises, ask your husband for help settling it.

If you are a husband, treat your in-laws as special and important. Remember that when you care for them, your wife feels you are caring for her.
Posted by Jill Fallon at November 29, 2012 1:37 PM | Permalink