The Dreaded Mother-in-Law

A woman seeks advice on what to do about her irritating mother-in-law.

What Would Debbie Do?


Dear Debbie,

I don’t get along that great with my mother-in-law. She has done some things in the past that I just can’t “move on” from and she doesn’t understand. She never worries about our issues until the holidays come around, so of course I can’t stand the holidays. We are having a birthday party for my son in a few weeks and I asked for RSVPs. My mother-in-law hasn’t called and I wanted to know who was coming by this weekend so I could order the food. If she just shows up, should I let her know that I would have liked her to call or just ignore it?

Dear Annoyed,

Clearly, there are issues here, and you’ve been put in awkward situations. But remember this: You cannot change the fact that your mother-in-law is a handful. And you cannot change the fact that she’s your husband’s mother. Therefore, it’s incumbent upon you to step up, make nice, and move on. You will gain so many more points with your husband for making family events easier, that you’ll forget that she’s such a pain in the rear.

Don’t call her on her bad manners. Welcome her into your home with a smile. Kindness always prevails. And she’s obviously ill-mannered and looking to push your buttons. Don’t let her.

That’s what I would do…


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