Dealing with In-Laws Over the Holidays
By JENNIFER MERRITT
If you're one of the lucky ones who gets along swimmingly with your in-laws, quit reading this and start cooking them one of our fantastic recipes to impress them further. But if you're anything like the folks on our Dealing with In-Laws message board, we've got some ways you can get through this least wonderful time of the year.
Know that you're not alone in your struggles. Here are some stories from fellow iVillagers whose holidays also resemble a less funny version of National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.
"[Holidays] make me want to scream. They make me want to pack up my [dear husband] and kids and get in the car and go out of town. They [in-laws] ask me what I want to bring for Thanksgiving—just tell me. Truly. Just name it. I have no interest in what to bring. I know for a fact you hate all my recipes, so just tell me." —imotherothers
"I have started to hate the holidays. I dread this time of year. Last Christmas I had asked at Thanksgiving what [mother-in-law] wanted me to bring for Christmas and she didn't give me an answer. Then at 9 p.m. Christmas Eve, she called [dear husband] and asked if I would bring a dessert. [Dear husband] told her it was very last minute. [Father-in-law] called [dear husband] later and told him he was really rude to his mom and made her cry and that he didn't know what his problem was because they were just trying to make a nice Christmas for everyone. I was six months pregnant, and who wants to go grocery shopping that late on Christmas Eve?" —
"The year before last, I got to host Thanksgiving, and my parents came down and my mom and I spent all day baking pies because [mother-in-law] assigned us to desserts once again. My ever-competing [mother-in-law] showed up with several desserts herself, and I swear my mom almost told her what she could do with her pies! Last year, my godmother offered to make our pies, and her recipes have won first place at many fairs, and my [mother-in-law] and her sister only had negative things to say about them." —missjen316
"One year I got a request from [my grandmother-in-law]. She said that I was the only one bringing dessert and to make it a good one. I made a cake from the picture of a magazine. If you have ever done it, some of them aren't easy. This was a very expensive cake with liquors, etc., and all these ingredients I didn't have. I had to make homemade meringue for heaven's sake. It was a labor of love. (Give me a break, I was a newlywed.) It turned out beautiful. Took me hours and I seem to recall around $40. I was so proud of it. When I showed up no one even commented except for these two things: 'What were you thinking?' and the one I loved, 'We don't go much for cake.' No one even tried it." —imotherothers