Building a happy marriage seems to be a challenging phase for a woman.
You have extra parents, siblings, uncles, cousins, and more relatives to create a good relationship with.
Sometimes, your husband may also ask you to take care of his parents, leave alone invite them to come and live with you in your matrimonial home.
But the most challenging part is when your husband asks you to take care of his mother.
Being in a good relationship with their mothers-in-law is one of the major blessings every woman prays for when getting married.
Besides experiencing friendly and woman-to-woman communication with your in-laws, it also aids in building close contact with your husband.
But what if you are expected to be a caregiver when you are not willing?
Here is everything you can do if your husband expects you to take care of his mother.
What to Do When Your Husband Expects You to Take Care of His Mother
Taking care of your mother-in-law should be a personal choice rather than a compulsory requirement.
Whether you are a working wife or not, you may have limited time to take care of all family aspects, leave alone caring for your in-laws.
Therefore, in situations where your husband expects you to care for his mother, here are some of the wisest ways to respond:
1. Learn to say NO
Saying NO is not a sign of disrespect or rudeness.
It is a polite way to express yourself and show disagreement with the situation at hand.
Saying NO to your husband when he has unreasonable expectations from you allows both of you to feel comfortable and create a room to discuss more pressing issues that may arise in case you cannot take care of his mother.
When declining the request, let him know why you cannot be his mother’s caregiver and provide possible alternatives to his request.
For instance, ask him about his siblings and other relatives and why they are not sharing the responsibilities of taking care of his mother.
Also, discuss if it is possible to hire a caregiver and share the cost with him and his family members.
2. Consider Your Needs
Getting married can make you a happier woman, especially if you marry your best friend.
However, dealing with unreasonable expectations from your husband, like taking care of his mother, can be stressful.
While you may want to take up the responsibilities, sometimes it is recommended never to ignore your needs.
As you take care of your in-laws, always prioritize your happiness, mental health, physical fitness, and marital rights.
Let your husband know that you also have life to live, away from your marriage and in-law relationship.
As much as you may want to help him care for his mother, tell him you also need your time alone to enjoy and explore life.
3. Let Your Husband Feel Heard and Respected
Making him feel heard and respected is not all about doing everything he wants.
Instead, it is holding a mature conversation with him and letting him reason with you in cases where some of his expectations seem unrealistic.
Before accepting or declining his request, try to understand the primary reason why he chose you to take care of his mother.
Remember, your husband may ask you to take care of his mother because he sees you as a caring and loving wife.
Or else, he may be trying to test your love for him, and declining his request may make him feel you don’t care about him and his family.
Therefore, while this may put you in a dilemma, always listen and let him reason with you from all angles.
4. Know What You Can Control and What You Cannot
Trying to fit in all situations, even those that are beyond your reach is one reason to feel frustrated in marriage.
As a woman, always focus on responsibilities you can take comfortably without compromising your happiness.
Whether you are taking care of your mother-in-law or not, always set boundaries between what you can control and what you cannot.
If you agree to take care of his mother, think about how tight your schedule is and decide on the number of days in a week you can visit his mother.
You can also decide how much to set aside for her caregiver.
Generally, only take those responsibilities you can manage and let him handle the rest.
5. Understand Your Boundaries
Besides knowing your responsibilities as a caring wife, you should also understand your boundaries and learn to live with them.
For instance, while you may agree to be a caregiver, this does not guarantee you to become too close to your mother-in-law and forget about your husband.
Also, don’t allow her to breach your marital privacy, and let her know you are still married to her son despite being her caregiver.
Some ways to set boundaries in your marriage while still caring for your husband’s mother include:
- Knowing the right time to visit your mother-in-law, especially if she is not living with you.
- Knowing what to say to her about your marriage and personal issues.
- Budgeting for her to avoid using money meant for family business or upkeep.
- Avoid competing with her for your husband’s attention.
How to Take Care of Your Mother-In-Law and Win Her Heart
Let’s face it; you will always find yourself in a fix trying to please your husband and fulfilling his expectations.
While taking care of his mother is one idea that you may not welcome willingly, you may also be forced to do so to show your marriage commitment.
So, how do you take up the responsibility and make her love you?
Here are a few tips to consider.
- Help her with house chores such as cleaning, cooking, and other minor tasks.
- Spoil her with shopping, gifts, and other personal treatments.
- Participate in her hobbies and other social activities to make her feel connected to the world around her.
- Check on her medical care and contribute if possible.
- Maintain constant communication with her and show kindness and compassion to her feelings and needs.
Caring for your husband’s mother can be a challenging task, especially if you do not have a good relationship with her.
Again, convincing your husband that you are not comfortable with his request may be a tough experience ever as he will take it as disrespect or lack of love and care.
While the situation will always leave you in dilemma, it is advisable to balance your position as a caring wife and your needs.
Always focus on what makes you happy without respecting your husband.
Also, don’t try to separate your husband from his mother and only help where you can.