Many parents become anxious when faced with meeting prospective in-laws for the first time. This is especially true during the holidays, which have special meaning unto them selves. Holidays have always been a time for family and now there is the prospect of expanding family boundaries and admitting other people who might not be like our selves. Sometimes they are very different and come from different cultures, different ways of thinking and reacting. Our children love each other but questions about how we will get along often haunt us. Will they like us? Will we like them? Will we have enough to talk to them about so that we can survive and even enjoy our holiday with them? Will we embarrass or disappoint our son/daughter?

I have often counseled couples to embrace the other and be interested in them. Reaching out and asking them questions often makes the other person feel that you are interested in them and predisposes them to be open to you and even like you. It creates a positive atmosphere in which to get to know each other better. This will help your adult children to relax and enjoy them selves as well.

Barbara Feld

Got thoughts or opinions on this topic? A helpful anecdote you want to share? Feel free to leave a comment below.


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