7 Tips for when Your Mother-in-Law Doesn't like You ...


Do you ever feel that your mother-in-law doesn’t like you? Relationships between women and their sons' wives can be difficult. Ideally parents should accept the woman their son marries, but sadly some parents don't like their daughter-in-law - and some even make that all too clear. So if you're in the position where your mother-in-law doesn’t like you, here are some tips on handling a very difficult and stressful experience …

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Give It Time

If your mother-in-law doesn’t like you, try to wait it out and see if the situation improves. An initially difficult relationship can evolve into one of mutual tolerance, and even friendship. It may take years for this change to occur, but it can happen, much to your surprise.


Building a warm relationship requires patience and understanding. Consider that she, too, has to adjust to you being a significant part of her child’s life. Over time, boundaries may soften and perspectives can shift, especially as you share more experiences. Sometimes, being consistent with kindness and demonstrating your commitment to the family helps her see you in a more positive light. Stay true to yourself and give her opportunities to know the real you; your patience may very well lay the groundwork for a future stronger bond.


Try to Make Friends

Try to cultivate a friendship with your mother-in-law. Even if you don't particularly like her, get to know her a bit better. You may have more in common than you think (and not just that you both love her son). Talk to her about her interests and thoughts, and she may start to see you in a more positive light.


Making friends with your mother-in-law can be a challenge, especially if she doesn't like you. However, there are some tips that can help to bridge the gap. First, try to find common ground. Talk to her about her interests and thoughts, and be open to learning about her life. Show her respect and kindness, even if it's hard. Spend time with her, and don't be afraid to ask for advice. Finally, be patient. It may take time for her to warm up to you, but if you keep trying, you may eventually be able to form a respectful and meaningful relationship.


Understand Her

Is there a reason behind your mother-in-law's attitude towards you, however unfair it may be? Try to understand where she's coming from, and you may be able to improve your relationship with her. Mothers can feel threatened by the 'other woman' in their son's life and see her as a rival. Show her that she is still an important person to him - and that she could be to you.


Talk to Her

Is your mother-in-law the kind of person who will discuss difficult topics? If so, talk to her about your difficult relationship and try to clear the air (without being confrontational and blaming her for anything). Make it clear that you want to have a good relationship with her.


Nothing Personal

Remember that her dislike of you is not a reflection on you as a person; it's more likely a problem within her. Perhaps she was very fond of her son's previous partner and isn't adapting too well to his new relationship. And if you really can't change her attitude, it doesn't mean that you're not a nice person, or that the relationship is doomed to failure.


Partner's Support

Enlist your partner's support and ask him to back you up if his mother treats you badly. She should at least respect you as the woman her son has chosen to be with, and he should make it clear that he expects her to be civil. If he won't support you, then perhaps the problem is between you and him, not you and her …



If your mother-in-law really is unpleasant towards you, and nothing you try can make any difference, the only option may be to keep away from her. Your partner can still have a relationship with her, and go to see her without you. There's no point in spending time with someone who acts unpleasantly to you.

It is possible to completely turn an unfriendly mother-in-law round and become friends with her, or at least reach an agreement to tolerate each other. But however frustrating she is, try not to criticise her to your partner or kids - she is their mother or grandmother. And remember to be nice to your own daughter-in-law one day! Do you have the mother-in-law from hell, or is she like a second mom?

Feedback Junction

Where Thoughts and Opinions Converge

I have to live with my mother in-law never says things directly to me, but when she and her son argue, she always says belittling things about me, my parenting and pretty much everything about me. I don't say anything, in attempt to try and keep what little peace there is, so her and I don't get into an argument. Luckily I have an amazing man that doesn't accept the way she talks about me and stands up for me when she does that. However, I did tell him it's time to move. We only moved with her because we were expecting a new baby and she agreed to watch him in exchange for paying bills. Upon moving in, all her bills (Mortgage, water, gas, electric) were backed up by $2,500-3,000 (this we did not know, probably should've taken a look at her bills before agreeing). Of course it'll take us sometime to bring those numbers down - but she doesn't understand that and complains that I'm just not doing enough. I'm just tired of being cut down all the time.

Mother in law from hell. No matter how hard I try to get along within the family she thinks I'm fake .. I'm just being myself.. 😯

I had a mother in law from hell and my husband didn't stand up for me. As you said the problem became between me and him and I lost respect for him as he let me down time and again. Changed my feelings to him and we are now no longer a couple. Think carefully before committing in this situation, the signs were there before we married.

My future mother in law god help . I'm 12 weeks pregnant and just got engaged. I've known my fiance for 2 decades before we got together.  She thinks I'm fake and I she insists her son goes to see them to clear the air after i apparently attacked her other daughter in law ( who trolled me on fb and was vile to me btw for no reason) i don't think it's any of her business and she needs to stop and keep out of our relationship.  I don't know what to do

#3 my mother law has live with us 3 months at first it was good she has went behind my back and says thi go toy husband life has changed I have tried to talk to her bout things my husband doesn't see my point of view

From the moment I walked up the sidewalk to the church on my father's arm, in my "Princess Diana" dress, & my now ex-MIL, gushed to father, "Larry, you look wonderful!" I should have known.... 20 years later, after, (when she herself had filed divorce papers five days after WE were married from HER husband), I am divorced, and my ex fought ferociously and contentiously for sole custody of my two teens! Ultimately, I was forced to agree to his having residential custody, and I feel he and his family manipulate my children's feelings and they are becoming estranged from me. I am disabled, and this stress has caused me to lose 100 pounds. I always felt I was part of a love triangle, and she was a jealous wife! She pulled stunts, such as calling my mother or husband (after she and I, in my opinion, had had a great conversation), twisted one part and "reported" something I had NOT said to my husband, and warned my mother that something she felt something may be wrong with me. To this day, the only explanation I have is that she is an abuser, inflicting psychological, emotional, and possible physical abuse through control, manipulation, guilt-tripping, emotional blackmail, and other tactics employed by such abusers. I have learned this the hard way, details of which I won't go into.

My MIL has stooped to a new low. Three days after I burried my father, she decided to say to her son, that I had made her cry, because I had been cruel and thoughtless about her husband suffering a stroke. I did not say anything of the kind. I've been with her son for the last 20 years, so I know what she is like, , but this is a new low even for her. Thankfully she has just sent me to Coventry, it's nice an peacefull there, long may it continue. I don't understand what she think she will gain from this action. She has totally lost all my respect.

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