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In law Problems Can Make You
In Side Out

Funny cartoon of a looney bird and her mother goose in law reminding her son why he shouldn't have married.

Mother Goose In Law

For some reason, it is almost expected for married folks to have in law problems. There's even a plant called "mother in law tongue" because, I suppose, it has leaves that rival in length to your typical mother in law's tongue.

As a kid I would laugh and laugh at Fred Flintstone and the trouble his mother in law gave him.

Ralph Kramden (Jakie Gleason) in the Honeymooners didn't hide the fact that he couldn't tolerate his mother in law's biting remarks. One of my favorite episodes is when Ralph practices self-restraint... although he came very close to hitting her with that chair.

Obviously, you can have in law problems with more than just mother in laws. I'm sure there's plenty of trouble to be had with father in laws, sister in laws, and brother in laws. But none compare to the fun we can have with the mums - in law.

Let's do a side by side comparison and see...

  • Father in law
    Every time they come to your house, they feel compelled to "fix" something - even if you insist that nothing is broken.

    Mother in law
    Every time they come to your house, they tell you how to "fix" the dinner that you ruined.

  • Brother in law
    He always seems short on cash... because he hasn't worked in over a year.

    Mother in law
    She says that family helps each other and you should loan your brother in law a couple hundred - like any decent individual would.

  • Sister in law
    She needs a sitter again because she's going to the tanning salon... and no, she can't watch your kids on Thursday because she's getting her nails done - Tiffany is simply impossible to get an appointment with!

    Mother in law
    Why don't you ever let the kids come over and visit? Someone has to undo all the damage you've done.

I fear that after a side by side comparison, they all seem pretty bad.

How To Deal with In Laws

Dealing with in laws that cause you trouble may make you a little crazy (as you can see in this letter from a subscriber).

What can you do? They are a part of your family now. But only a small part, hopefully! Really, how much of your time do they take up? Not all that much.

As long as they're not some destructive force, we can grin and bare their little idiosyncrasies - and don't think for a minute that you don't have your own... idiosyncrasies, that is.

If you'd rather "laugh and bare it", how about video taping your get-togethers? In secret, of course.

Then, when it's just you and your spouse, pop it up on the screen and you can watch your very own, unedited sitcom - complete with bloopers. Watching in law problems (while crunching on some popcorn) just may help you appreciate your in laws all the more.

I know that Everybody Loves Raymond has got nothin' on my family!

My In Laws Are a Pain in the Neck!

If you're having a little trouble dealing with your in laws (or just have a funny in law story) why not run it past Dr. J? If there's anybody that could help you - it's Dr. J.

Do You Have a Crazy In Law?

What - Only one?

I have two sons in law (or is it son in laws?) that I didn't even think to make fun of. Maybe because they are only slightly annoying... and they read this site. But that doesn't mean that you can't tell the story of your son or daughter in law!

If your in laws drive you batty, tell your story here. We'll try to sympathize.

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