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ADVICE: What to do when your mother-in-law hates you

By Faeza
13 January 2017

Anonymous from Soweto writes:

My husband and I have been married for four years. We stay together with his mother. We do not have children of our own. But my husband has a child from a previous relationship and I treat the child as my own. But I have a problem with my mother-in-law. She doesn’t like me; she loves my husband’s baby mama. Whenever she is around with the child, my mother-in-law becomes so nice and cooks for them. They always have these chats

about the past and I always feel left out. I’ve done so much to impress my mother-in-law,

hoping that she will come around and appreciate my efforts. But she just doesn’t care about what I do. That is why I don’t know what to do to gain her approval and love.

Jennifer Papers, a counselling social worker from The Family Life Centre in Johannesburg, says:

“The most important thing is that y our husband loves you. Sit down with him and explain to your husband how you feel and ask him for his help in dealing with this stressful situation. It is al ways healthier for a family to have an honest and open discussion about the behaviour which distresses them. It is often helpful for families to go for mediation in order to discuss difficult issues that affect their relationships with an impartial person who will assist them share their feelings in a safe and neutral environment. If you are not able to resolve this matter with the help of your husband, you might find that it is better to go for professional intervention.”