They say it takes a village to raise a family. A big part of your village is your extended family — not just your relatives, but also the relatives of your partner. As such, these relationships need to be managed and maintained well to prevent misunderstandings (or to handle them maturely).
Here are different things you can do to build a healthy relationship with your in-laws and other members of your extended family.
6 ways to form healthy relationships with your extended family
1. Keep your communication with your spouse often.
Fatherlysays it is important for you and your partner to be aware of how each is feeling with regards to relationships with extended family, especially if either one of you is having issues with specific relatives. This way, you will be able to stay united in dealing with the problem.
Sometimes arguments can occur when a husband and a wife don’t agree on situations like frequency and length of family visits or relatives making comments about your parenting style. To avoid difficult situations like this, make sure to establish boundaries upfront. Again, maintaining a united front with your spouse is key to ensuring that those boundaries are upheld.
3. Be careful about how you complain.
When you’re agitated about how certain relatives are acting, it can be easy to lose your cool and say negative things about them to your spouse. Unfortunately, this might only lead to arguments or your partner getting offended. Instead, focus on explaining how you’re feeling and how the two of you can solve the issue. Example: “I would like you to ask your relatives to be more careful of their language when they’re around the kids.”
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4. Stay calm and patient.
Again, losing your temper might only stir up more trouble and even cause your in-laws to be angry. Even when you’re angry or frustrated, try to remain kind and respectful, especially when talking to them about issues you want to be addressed.
Family gatherings are a big deal in the Philippines, especially during holidays. They are also a way to spend time with relatives you may not be able to see that often. Aside from those celebrations, it can also be a good idea to create new, more regular traditions, like weekly dinner at Lolo and Lola’s house or a weekend out with cousins. These gatherings can be something for your family to look forward to!
6. Make an effort.
What’s so hard about offering to help clean up after a family dinner or offering to assist your in-laws with their chores? You not only give them a good impression, but you also show them that you are putting in the effort to spend time with and get to know them.
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