(Closed) Suggestions for a FMIL—what NOT to do/say

posted 8 years ago in Family
Post # 18
18 posts
  • Wedding: November 2011

The one thing that really gets to me is that my Future Mother-In-Law is always on about “In our family we …..”.  I really appreciate that my Fiance has a close knit family, but you know, I have family and we have traditions too.

Post # 19
197 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

I love my Mother-In-Law but she drove me nuts by buying things then asking me what I thought about them.  I loved that she was so excited but when she already spent money on something I had a very difficult time telling her that I actually didn’t like it.

Also, don’t suprise her with things unless you KNOW it’s something she really wants.  Example: I wanted a basket of vintage hankies for the church but scratched it from my list due to time & finances, my Mother-In-Law searched ebay & bought a bunch & put them together in a basket for me…GOOD SUPRISE…deciding we needed favors then bringing them to the reception site while we are setting up…BAD SUPRISE.

Post # 20
2247 posts
Buzzing bee

I love my Future Mother-In-Law, but I feel like she hasn’t been helpful enough/interested/involved in the wedding planning, at all.  It kinda hurts my feelings, to be honest.  I definitely wouldn’t want her being overbearing and insisting upon me doing things.  But, I’d love it if she said, “Hey, do you want to go get some flowers from Michael’s and start doing the bouquets?” 

The best thing you can do is offer help and suggestions in a non-forceful way.  Offer to do things for her, like help with any DIY projects.  She’ll appreciate it.

Post # 21
6065 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 2012

I think it’s wonderful that you care enough to ask this question. I think no matter how kind and great of a person a Mother-In-Law and DIL may be…it is a naturally tense relationship at times.

I would say Rule #1 is to never get in the middle of any issues your son and DIL will have in the future. Let them work out their own problems.

Other than that, I agree with the PPs on their advice.


Post # 22
40 posts
  • Wedding: September 2012

My future mother-in-law has been really sweet in the whole process. She just said she’s here to help, and to just let her know when I need her. She said sh’es not going to do/plan anything unless we ask. Then she mader a joke that we’re not getting anything until we ask for it, so if we want a present we’d better ask for that, too, lol. 🙂

Post # 23
1077 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

Great suggestions.

Here are a few that I can think of from my experience:

Do offer to help.

Do accept that staying away is sometimes the best help if the bride tells you that she’s got one project or another under control.  (I specifically didn’t want my Future Mother-In-Law to help set up the reception, but she wouldn’t away.  This was stressful for many of us and a friends’ husband was sort of given the job of keeping her out of the way.  You don’t want to find out at some later point that someone was actually assigned the job of keeping you out of the way.)

Do offer financial support in advance if you plan to contribute.  (Our ILs gave us our “wedding present” about 3 months early, and it completely took money worries away for me.  If I was just hoping it would happen after the wedding it would have been way more stressful.)

Do offer to put together a contact/address list for your side of the family.

Do not make an end run around the bride and solicit approval from just your son if she makes a request you don’t like or doesn’t go along with one of your suggestions.

Do not ask for an invite to dress fittings, bachelorettes, etc.  For some people, these are more private and for others more inclusive.  She’ll let you know what she needs.

Do let the MOB buy her dress first.  Buy something that is a similar level of formality, but don’t try to upstage her or the bride.  Do not wear white or off-white.

Do be a psyched Future Mother-In-Law just like you are.  It means the world to me that my Mother-In-Law was happy to have me join the family.

Post # 24
245 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

Just be punctual with things. For example, I have asked my Future Mother-In-Law for a list of people she wanted to invite and she never came through so my Fiance had to make it up.  Also, I am still short numerous addresses from her and the save-the-dates went out over a month ago.  I think just understanding the types of deadlines and pressure the bride is under will help immensely!

Post # 26
197 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

“Do not ask for an invite to dress fittings, bachelorettes, etc.”

This!  I can’t believe I forgot this.  I was so upset with my Mother-In-Law because she invited herself to my final dress fitting.  I was very emotional already & had planned to go by myself & take time to just relax and focus on what was happening but I couldn’t.  I ended up in tears before the fitting even started because I was stressed out.  I love her and I know she meant well but it was really hard on me.

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