A typical Indian family
What is it about any mother-in-law daughter-in-law pair that keeps ticking like a bomb waiting to explode? Sure for the new bahu, it’s the new family atmosphere, adjusting to the new life style, new people and their attitudes. No matter how much we claim that it’s the 21st century and we are “educated” people of advanced mind frame, the age old war and vibes still exist especially if the couple lives with the husband’s parents.
The nuances, the body language, the conversation, the outings, everything will appear damn good on the surface. Look deep and you will get an insight in those subtle tones of body language, talks, get-togethers that communicate of a totally different exchange that is otherwise invisible to the outsider.
Every person in the family goes through a different set of fears, apprehensions and anxiety that forms the foundation for these misunderstandings. The saas is apprehensive of losing control of the household on which she spent her entire lifetime. She is naturally too attached and of course habituated to having things work her way around the house. So it’s difficult to let go. Also too difficult to let go of her son due to her possessiveness and jealously. Am not saying it’s incorrect or invalid on her part to do so, but that it is just how it is. It’s a given.
The father-in-law may or may not be involved in the household matters, depends on how the situation is. Incase he is old, he would be retired from all the activities and he won’t have any qualms as long as you give him his food and medicine on time. But there are some who are actively involved in the day-to-day matters and who would peek into the kitchen and throw orders about what should be cooked that day!
The new daughter-in-law is the most apprehensive of the lot. She knows her every move is watched, that she will be judged, opinions will be formed and decisions will be made for her. Her agenda is to gain her husband’s attention, confidence, love, support, trust and interlace her life around it to shape their marriage and give it a strong foundation. It’s remarkable to be able to do this at the same time dodging the surprises and shocks thrown at her from her in-laws and sometimes from her husband too. In the process, she may hurt her husband, after all it’s his parents.
The husband meanwhile gets sandwiched between his own parents and his new life mate. He becomes a tennis ball being thrown from one side to the other. He cannot take the side of his parents if his wife’s complains are valid. Neither can he defy his parents who have brought him up. The poor guy is left with juggling glass balls.
How does any one of them find equilibrium? Things will continue to be like this unless someone or all of them take matters in hand and resolve them. All matters are small at first. If you nip it in the bud, then a poisonous tree will not grow. Attend to every matter that appears small. Then you will not face big problems and uncontrollable situations.