Hate Is Such A Really Strong Word

But regrettably you do hate the lady, even after careful consideration.

And this is too bad since you’ve prayed the Rosary, meditated with your decorative Buddha (from Wal-Mart), listened to Dr. Wayne Dyer, watched ‘The Secret’ 55 times, and even learned some Tina Turner meditative chants on You Tube.

No seriously, you really took your Walmart Buddah and started to study Tina Turner's chants to help you deal with your spouses Momma

But here comes Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and Feliz Navidad and you have no idea how to STILL deal with the woman.

Christmas with Your Mother in Law? (The Ultimate Survival Guide)Credit: Morgue File with a little Christmas Flare

You cope better when she’s thousands or even hundreds of miles away.

And her annoying-sanctimonious- know-it-all voice you only have to hear on voicemail because you don’t answer when you see her god forsaken name on the caller ID and when your spouse asks whose calling you typically reply along with lots of character acting movement of disappointment: “Oh, Damn, I just missed it. Honey, It looks like your mother called.”

But now you’ve gotten the word that she’s coming for Christmas.

Or worse yet, after your yoga class or DYI garage coma, you suggested to your spouse that she come for Christmas.

You thought you’d get cool points/more sex/some diamonds {insert your pleasure}, because you expected your beloved to say, “No we’ll visit her next year and just get her something really nice instead.”

But NO-OOOOOOO your betrothed had to go and agree with, “That would be great, I’m so proud of you and I realize that my mother brings you angst/heartburn/slow death {insert your affliction}, but it’s only for two weeks.”

That’s 14 days of Pure Unadulterated Christmas Mother In Law, what do you do?

Go On a Fact Finding Mission (In-Possible)

Get out your Sherlock Holmes glasses and do some research. Typically for a person to cause pain or friction there is often some history there. Ask someone your trust about giving you the skinny on you Momma in Law. Not to use against her, but to sympathize or gain insight in why she does what she does. Perhaps her in laws hated her and this dynamic is the only way she knows how to operate. Or maybe she feels as though you’ve taken her son or daughter away from her.

Or maybe she really does hate your meatloaf and could make it better with one eye and both of her hands tied behind her back. (No Biggie) But you’re likely to find some of the former or a little bit of the fact that your meatloaf does suck and is a little dry.

Kill Her with Kindness (But Not Literally)

Just be nice.

Maybe your Mother in Law is testing you – even if unconsciously. On top of the fact, you’re probably not her favorite person in the world either, especially if you have to buy a decorative Buddha from Wal-Mart just to ground yourself spiritually when you think about the woman.

Many times people need to find reasons to dislike a person, so if she figures she can make a few jabs to validate her displeasure for you to which you respond unfavorably.  And all the better for her, to go to bed on a full tummy of fruit cake and validation.

Don’t give your mother in law that Christmas present of validation. And please don’t give her 10 year old re-gifted fruit cake. 

Let Her See You Sweat-To the Oldies (or Cry)

Your Mother in Law probably thinks she knows you, like the back of her nosey hand.

Flip the script on the lady, by doing something out of character but perhaps turn on the TV and watch one her favorite movies.

Steele Magnolias, Terms of Endearment or It’s a Wonderful Life has some tear jerker scenes.

If she’s never seen you cry, let out a tear or two (but don’t overdo it, this could backfire and become family fodder for the rest of your life). Or maybe she likes to play checkers, if you’re typically cool and calm when you play, dance around the table if you win (or lose). Play some Elvis/Chuck Berry/ Chaka Kahn/ Earth Wind and Fire/Beatles {insert something she dances to or would have danced to} and cut loose with her. You’re breaking up the monotony. And sometimes the unexpected can cause people to see you in a different and more favorable light and vice versa. (I’m sorry but this probably won’t include your cooking or your sense of humor).

There you have it, the ultimate guide on surviving your Mother in Law for Christmas.

Look out for my next guide, “Meat Loaf So Good- You’ll Want to Smack Your Momma…In Law (But Not Literally)”.