We have all heard stories about the mother-in-law, daughter-in-law dynamics. Not all are favorable. And as some of you know, my youngest son is getting married in November, which means, I officially will add that title to my name. So when Rebecca, from The Cadence Group emailed me about today’s guest, I responded immediately. I do have to say that my husband and I are blessed, our future daughter-in-law, Jess, is beautiful both inside and out. We already consider her our “own” daughter. Please help me in welcoming Dr. Deanna Brann.
DR. DEANNA BRANN
Deanna Brann, Ph.D., is a leading expert in the field of mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationships. She has more than 25 years experience as a clinical psychotherapist and ran her own private practice for more than 18 years. Based in Knoxville, TN, Dr. Brann is a sought after speaker, author and seminar leader. She is the two-time author of Reluctantly Related: Secrets To Getting Along With Your Mother-in-Law or Daughter-in-Law and Mothers-in-Law and Daughters-in-Law Say the Darndest Things.
Connect with Dr.. Brann at these sites:
Five Reasons Why You Struggle with Your In-Laws
Put a group of women together, bring up the subject of mothers-in-law and daughters-in-law, and you can almost hear the electricity start to crackle in the air. Whether they can’t stand one another, don’t “get” one another, or just feel at a loss about how to deal with one another, one thing is certain—women who struggle with this relationship have a story to tell:
- “She did it again! No matter what I say, she completely ignores me and does whatever she wants, whenever she wants.”
- “My son and I used to be so close until he married her. Now he barely speaks to me!”
- “Why does she have to be so intrusive, so controlling?”
- “She won’t let me see my grandchildren!”
The mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationship is surely one of the most confusing and difficult relationships one can experience—no matter what side of it you’re on. You don’t yet feel like family, and you aren’t really friends, but you’re definitely more than casual acquaintances. To get a handle on how to approach this tricky relationship, it helps to understand these five reasons why it’s such a struggle in the first place:
- The artificial element: Let’s face it, you didn’t choose to be in each other’s lives. You and your in-law are thrown together because you both love this one man—your husband or your son. Even though you don’t really know each other as individuals, you have to create a relationship (rather quickly, I might add) because you are now “family.”
- Different stages, different emotional places: You and your in-law are at different stages in your lives. The mother-in-law has already made a home and life of her own. And the daughter-in-law is just getting started on these aspects of her life (and understandably wants to do it her way). The two of you are also in different emotional places. So much of what a mother-in-law focuses on is based on what she’s learned in her past experiences, while a daughter-in-law is focusing more on the future that she wants to create.
- Personal history and carry-on baggage: Each of you came into this relationship with your own history and emotional baggage, so each of you has different personal issues. Those issues greatly impact how you perceive and react to what the other says and does.
- Perception is reality (or is it?): Because of these different issues, each of you also has her own perception of reality. So what one sees as a helpful, positive suggestion or offer, the other may well see as clear evidence of meddling and controlling (or vice versa). It’s the same situation seen through differently tinted glasses.
- There’s reacting, and then there’s reacting! Just as your perception can be skewed, so can your reaction to what you see. When your in-law reacts to something you said or did, that reaction is based on her perception, which is likely to be very different from yours. If her perception is off, you can easily think her reaction is coming out of left field, even if it makes perfect sense to her.
Given all these challenges, you may well feel that your in-law relationship is certainly doomed, but trust me—there is hope! As you understand these factors and their impact on the mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationship, you will gain a greater understanding of the situation. And then you’ll be much better equipped to sidestep the land mines along the way.
ABOUT THE BOOK
Change your struggling in-law relationship today! Through humor, compassion and focus, I’ll show you how, step-by-step. In my book, Reluctantly Related I give you the understanding and the tools to make positive, lasting changes in your mother-in-law or daughter-in-law relationship. You don’t have to feel powerless or hopeless in your relationship!
· Learn the secrets to making change possible.
· Learn practical yet effective tools and skills that build your confidence and empower you with both your in-law and others.
· Learn how to transform your relationship without having to confront your in-law.
There has never been such an entertaining yet helpful resource on the specific problems between mothers-in-law and daughters-in-law. Reluctantly Related provides unique, straightforward help to any “MIL/DIL challenged” family, and should be required reading for newlyweds and their mothers!
Publisher: New Shelves Publishing Services
Publication date: 2/25/2013
THANKS TO REBECCA AT THE CADENCE GROUP,
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