Managing Monster-in-Laws: The Wrath of Mama Joyce

April 11, 2014  |  

My mother can be difficult. Yep, I said it. I’ve said it to her as well. She is set in her ways, not big on compromising, and isn’t a happy camper when I disagree with her. It’s a bit much. Luckily, she doesn’t give my husband a hard time (she saves it all for me) and he is a pretty easygoing guy, so they get along just fine.

Thankfully, I don’t have any horror stories to share about my mother-in-law, either. We get along wonderfully. We tend to agree on things and if we don’t, the disagreement is always respectful. What we have works.

In the last few weeks, I have been watching the Real Housewives of Atlanta while the situation between Kandi, Todd and Mama Joyce unfolds. I have to tell you, in my opinion Mama Joyce is way out of line and Kandi is tolerating too much.

I respect my mother—really, I do. However, I am grown and I don’t see why my mother would ever have a vote when it comes to my life decisions. As a mother, surely she has right to show concern and have an opinion. However, a concerned opinion does not equal a vote—ever.

I think problems between a person and their in-laws often stems from an underlying issue that person’s spouse has with their parent.

You see, if my mother-in-law is disrespecting me, and my relationship with my husband, but he never says a thing, that is a problem.

Sure, my mother-in-law may be dead wrong in the situation but frankly, my husband is dead wrong for not stepping in and managing the situation.

I do think there is hope if your relationship with your mother-in-law is a mess. Shoot, if there is hope for Mama Joyce ad Todd (did you see last week’s episode?), there is hope for anyone. But where there is hope, there has to be a willingness to change—by all parties involved.

When a parent is over-involved in their child’s life, there is a deeper issue present. It may seem like the issue is with the person their child has chosen to be with, but I rarely think that’s all there is to it. You see, if you raised your child to be a happy, well-rounded individual, shouldn’t you feel confident in their ability to select a spouse? Shouldn’t you trust their judgment?

If your mom is the in-law causing all the problems, what are you doing to let it happen? Are you letting your mom control your life because you don’t want to disrespect her, like Kandi claims? Are there some deeper control issues there that you are afraid to address?

Monster-in-laws can be a handful. Everybody gets that. But if you have a monster-in-law in your life, figure out what you and your spouse can do together to change things, because you really have no control over what mama does. Mamas have a mind of their own and getting them to change it is no easy feat. Change what you can control and keep your relationship in tact because if your boo leaves, mama sure won’t be there to keep you warm at night. Word.

Do you have a monster-in-law in your life? Is your mom the monster-in-law? How are you managing? What can you do to make things better?

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