7 Tips For Men Who Are Stuck Between Wife And Mother In A Joint Family

In-Laws | |
Updated On: May 4, 2024
A man living in a joint family does not know whose side to take wife or mother
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How do you manage your wife and parents? How do you strike a balance between wife and mother? Who do you choose? Well, the answer is no one. Now, this might be a tricky situation to be in. Often, people will nudge you to side with the strong, caring woman who has made you the man you are today. Then there are others who will probably call you a mama’s boy, will pester you and tell you how you have a mind of your own, and how traditional sentimentality does not suit a man.

The third group will urge you to get yourself a lot of baby oil owing to the position you find yourself in, while the rest will stand for diplomacy. Who is important, the mother or wife, you are often asked. You don’t have an answer most of the time. Any man who lives in a joint family will have faced emotional strains when conflicts arise between his wife and his mother.

You have been a caring son and there has not been a day when you weren’t a loyal husband to your wife. So, at a time when tensions are high, you are common ground for complaint and venting of emotions. You are expected to become the man between wife and mother. Even small differences that crop up, when both women are living under the same roof, can grow exponentially with or without your aid. It won’t be an easy thing to manage, the vigor of women.

How To Balance Between Wife And Mother

How to balance between your wife and your mother? Why is it so difficult to manage parents and wife after marriage? Such questions must be running in your mind if you have both of them staying under the same roof. Earlier, when girls were married off young, they learned the values and traditions of the family they got married into, under the strict watch of difficult mothers-in-law.

But now, women are educated, have jobs, and bring their own set of values to their new home. Therefore, clashes between the daughter-in-law and mother-in-law are inevitable. If you are living in a joint family with your spouse and trying to navigate this conflict zone, here are some tips to handle fights between wife and mother.

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1. Understand it is very personal to both

“My mother and wife don’t get along” and “How do I solve problems between wife and mother” – if your mind is constantly plagued by such thoughts, allow us to help you. Your mother has nurtured you, whereas your wife has moved in to build a life with you. Both women are right from their individual perspectives.

Life changes after marriage. Priorities change. You have a wife now. You might want to side with her for everything, but understand this is a huge change for your mother as well. Your wife has moved into a completely new home where she doesn’t know anyone. Your mother is witnessing changes in her own home that she has built for decades. Both of them are running high on emotions.

It is not about choosing between wife and mother. It is not about diplomacy either. It is about being empathetic to both the ladies who are an integral part of your life. It is personal for both of them. It might be frustrating for you to deal with the drama all the time, but putting yourself in their shoes and diffusing the situation is what you should do.

Related Reading: Distancing Yourself From In-Laws – The 7 Tips That Almost Always Work

2. Pre-marriage planning

Your wife plans to move in with your family after she gets married to you. You know your wife and family might not get along. So, build a relationship with your spouse before marriage. Get to know your to-be bride and see how she gels with your family. Much before the big day, start involving your soon-to-be bride in matters of the household. Involve your mother in it too. It is important to let both women know that you love them.

Any insecurity your traditional mother might face is the thought of losing you to another woman and not holding that position of importance in your life. Thought this thought is irrational, as you are your own person and can certainly have more than one important person in your life, you do need to ease your mother into this arrangement. Let her know what she thinks is important for you. Let the women spend some time alone. Let them get acquainted with each other. Let them decide things on their own. If they can trust each other completely, your life will get a lot easier. You will be able to balance between your wife and mother.

3. Settle cooking wars

The kitchen is a major war arena. And you are often asked who is more important in the kitchen, the mother or the wife? Many husbands find themselves choosing between their wife and mother when it comes to food. “Who is the better cook?” – this question is bound to come up at some point. Living in a conservative joint family often entails women spending a lot of time in the kitchen and them taking pride in their efficiency, cooking skills, and management. Your wife might even have a job and still cooks every other night for the family.

If either your wife or mother loves to cook or you are one of those couples who love to cook together, then it is unlikely that problems will arise. The conflicts in the kitchen can be resolved if you just contribute to the kitchen chores on a daily basis. Any complaint from your mother can be placated right there and then. If your mother is traditional, and thinks a woman should prioritize her family before her career, then she might be tempted to blame your wife for not helping out much. So, it is up to you to show her your progressive side by doing your share of the chores. This way, everyone gets the work done and peace reigns again.

4. Don’t encourage complaining

Your peace is important here. One is your mother. The other is your wife. If one complains, remember that it’s not your job to always fix everything. If your wife says, “You mother is always picking fights”, don’t say, “I will talk to her”. Even if both are loved by you, they are adults. Encouraging one to complain about the other will make you lose your patience and peace of mind. 

Imagine getting to listen to stuff like “Your mother is so and so” or “Your wife was doing this and this.” Listen to them vent, but do not make a habit of it. You might excuse yourself too if you feel the wave of complaints hitting you hard. It is okay to let them resolve it between themselves. You don’t have to always handle fights between your wife and mother. They’re adults and should sort things out on their own. Only step in if someone has genuinely violated boundaries.

balance between wife and mother

5. Do not lash out at one in front of the other

“How do I manage my wife and parents?” and “My mother and wife don’t get along. What do I do?” – we’re sure such questions have crossed your mind at some point. Well, there are ways to manage parents and wife after marriage. If you Hulk out on one in front of the other, they will be incentivized to do the same too. When you are stuck between a rock and a hard place, you can’t get angry with one of them. What you say and how you say it will reflect on what they say and do when you are not around.

Related Reading: 10 Ways To Make An Angry Wife Happy

6. Set quality time apart with your mother

If your mother is micro-managing everything after marriage and is not willing to let go of you, which is naturally pissing off your wife, it is because she is beginning to feel slighted by you. Ease her into the situation by setting aside time with her. Taking her out for dinner is a nice idea. But do not complain about your wife when you are out. It is to show your mother how loved she is and that nothing has changed. Small gestures like these will reassure her and you will be able to balance between wife and mother much better. 

7. Neutrality is a great shade

When there is a lot of arguing, yelling, and screaming, instead of trying to calm everyone down, tell them to behave like mature adults and deal with things on their own. Ask them to communicate with each other respectfully, and make it clear to them that you cannot always be there to mediate between the two. You cannot always be the man between wife and mother.

We hope that by now, you have some idea on how to solve problems between wife and mother and how to manage parents and wife after marriage. Well, it is not going to be an easy task, but it is certainly doable. It is a complex relationship to deal with. Your relationship with your wife doesn’t threaten the one you have with your mother, and this is something they will eventually understand through your patience and calm. But the transition can be tricky to navigate considering the emotions and conditioning involved. But, don’t worry. If you follow the tips given above, you will easily be able to balance between wife and mother. We hope your problem of choosing between wife and mother is fixed soon!

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