My hubby and I addressed this too after we married, mostly because his mother is the queen of unsolicited advice (she means well ;), and my mother and I are VERY close.
Should parents wait for a invitation to come over? Or at least have to call ahead before coming over?
My mother would never come over without calling first, she is courteous (although I go to her house all the time without calling, lol, I still have a house key!) – even if she is in the area, she calls first, even if just to make sure I’m home. I would say that calling is courteous, but if they do live a ways away and happen to be in the area, stopping by isn’t a big deal as long as it’s within appropriate hours (9am-9pm type of thing).
How much unsolicated parenting advice is ok?
This was my issue. His mother gave us SO MUCH ADVICE and I couldn’t handle it. I think once it starts getting uncomfortable, it’s too much. When we told his mother we were pregnant, she launched into this tirade about how I better breast feed or else, and she won’t take any excuses like “my milk isn’t coming in”, you better drink lots of water, it’s best for the baby, you better do it – yada yada yada. Well personally, I didn’t want to listen to my Mother-In-Law lecture me on my boobs, it was awkward, uncomfortable, and uncalled for. I would go to my OWN mother with an BF’ing questions. I told my husband how inappropriate that was, but he couldn’t address it lol. If it does happen again, I will say something.
It’s okay to stick up for yourself (I need to learn that). But like one of the other bees said, they can give it, you don’t have to take it.
Should they get a vote in the homes we buy?
I think it can be important to involve parents because they know what they’re talking about, but I don’t think it should be a vote, or final say/ whatever. I talked to my dad first about every house we were going to put an offer in on. And we almost made a costly mistake with one, if he hadn’t pointed out a couple issues! Now I’m really glad I went to him.
But of course, depending on your relationships, it depends. If you have a overly-involved parents, including them might not be best, and asking another mature, older parental figure might be a better idea than including your parents. Especially if it turned into a squabble between your partner and you. Never involve the parents in on your disagreements.
My husband and I created a list of people we feel comfortable with that the other person can go to for advice if we’re having issues. We approved both lists, so now we always know that if the other one needs to seek advice or encouragement in our marriage, we’re not doing it behind each other’s backs, and only doing it with people that the other trusts (and has approved). I’ve found this is a great way to keep trust in the relationship.