(Closed) To what extent do you consider in-laws your "family"?

posted 4 years ago in Family
Post # 46
2627 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017 - Hogarths, Solihull

We’ve been together 8 years so his parents are like my parents. 

FI’s dad passed suddenly yesterday and I can tell you that it’s like losing your own flesh and blood. I’m truly devastated and doing everything I can for Fiance and Future Mother-In-Law. 

I love his Nan to bits too, but I wouldnt say I’m super close to his aunts and uncles. Then again, I don’t think I’m super close to mine, so yeah. 

Post # 47
7059 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

I’m extreamly close to my own stepmother, I consider her a mom (although I do call her by her first name) and I’m actually closer to her than my “real” mom. She didn’t come into my life until I was around 12, so it’s not about her being someone I grew up with from the time I was a little kid. 

I love my ILs, I consider them family. That being said I have a positive relationship with them and genuinely like them. They’re great people and I enjoy spending time with them. They welcomed me with open arms since day 1 and are extreamly supportive. I call them by their first names, but I’m sure will transition to whatever our future kids call them should we have them. We’ve been together for 16 years, since high school, so I’ve known them a long time. Darling Husband is also very very close to my family, especially my dad.

Likewise we’re both very close to his uncle by marriage, who has been long divorced from DH’s aunt and remarried. We’re close with him and his wife and Darling Husband considers them his aunt/uncle despite not technically being related. 

We’re a pretty loving/affectionate family. Hugs/kisses when we see each other. I think in our culture it’s pounded into your head “family family family” but I’m a firm believer that family isn’t just those who you are blood related to. I completely understand not being close to ILs who are mean or don’t treat you well. On the flip side I see a lot of my friends talk negatively about their ILs who are perfectly fine/nice people because it’s almost expected that you not like your ILs. It boils down to them being “different”….well the world is full of different people and just because your ILs may do things differently than your own family doesn’t make them wrong/annoying/etc – it just makes them different. 


  • This reply was modified 3 years, 7 months ago by  .
Post # 48
1320 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

Our relationship with DH’s parents is complicated. Because we’re estranged and don’t communicate any more, it would seem obvious that I don’t have the same connection with them as I do with my own. But strangely enough, I still very much consider them my family. I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that I am not afraid to speak my mind around them, I will stand up to them, fight with them, cry with them, and even though they haven’t really taken the time to get to know me on a deep personal level (after almost 7 years), I am certainly not afraid to be myself. They may not know about my interests or life goals, but they do know that I’m a fiercely determined person who’s extremely confident in herself, and that’s a pretty good thing for someone to think about you. Sometimes, I am almost more myself around them…I never want my own parents to worry about me, so I always put on a happy face for them.

DH’s sister may be selfish and completely absorbed in her young adult life right now, but if she called me out of the blue or showed up at our door, there’d be no question that I’d help her out. I’d throw a few punches for her any day. When it comes to the rest of the family, I have pretty much the same level of relationship that everyone else does, just without the history. The aunts and uncles and cousins aren’t super involved with each other, so it doesn’t feel any different for me than it does for Darling Husband.

I think all of this makes it so sad that we aren’t closer. Hopefully one day Darling Husband and I will be ready to handle the drama and FIL/MIL will start acting more like adults and we can all move forward.

Post # 49
6296 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2016

My Fiance and I have been together for almost a decade. I adore his family and definitely consider them my own- as in if he and I were no longer together I would still have relationships with many of his relatives. It helps that I have a lot in common with them separate from him and also that they’re amazing people.

They get on my nerves but most humans work my nerves from time to time. I will also say that some of the crazy ass in law stories I’ve seen on the ‘Bee have given me an even deeper appreciation for them. Their quirks and idiosyncrasies are very minor compared to the insanity and madness some women are dealing with on here!

Post # 50
816 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

mus1ca1xo:  I still feel a difference between me and my inlaws and I love them to death.  Like you I probably speak to my mil more than my own mom.  I would however do almost anything for them as I consider them a part of my family, different than my own but no less important.  I kind of see it like s different sort of love just like how I love my son the same as my husband but in a different way.

Post # 51
287 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

I love mine. DH’s parents are very warm, loving but respectful of our decisions and choices. I definitely lucked out. No crazy Mother-In-Law stories here 🙂

Post # 52
41 posts
  • Wedding: July 2016

I am not married yet, but will be in about 2 months and I’m not sure that I will ever see them as family in the traditional sense. I mean i love them because they created this amazing man that I love, but he is also nothing like them so. His mother is selfish, rude, manipulative, and deceptive. I don’t think she and I could ever get along and have a mother-daughter relationship. His brothers are so brainwashed by thier mother that they barely speak to us. It is honestly up to you if you want to consider them family and try to have that relationship with them. Just don’t do something because you feel obligated if you don’t feel right about it. 

Post # 53
1011 posts
Bumble bee

It makes sense to me. To me it’s sort of a package deal (as long as he gets along with them and his relationship with them is where it can be questionable) but since we each have an equal feeling toward our own families, I would do the same for his as I would want to do for mine (hoping he felt the same). Such as I want to invite mine for Christmas.. well I would want to invite his as well. I guess sort of a mirror thing. Even if I don’t feel that close, he’s that close to them and I would want to do for them what I’d want him to do for for mine if that makes sense. 

Post # 54
21 posts
  • Wedding: August 2016

My future father in-law and sister in-law take care of my fiancee due to his disablities. So I do consider them family because of what they do for us.

Post # 55
159 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

I wonder about this too sometimes, thanks for the post! I’ve known my in laws for about 7 years now but about 2 years ago when we got engaged/married the dynamic and expectations DRASTICALLY changed. I really liked my in laws, went on family vacations with them, spent every thanksgiving with them, etc. However, once we were engaged and subsequently married their behavior has towards me and expectations from me has changed A LOT. 

I’m really close to my family, in laws family don’t have a close knit culture, (they see their own daughter about once every two years). However, seeing the dynamic between me and my family mother and father in law, especially Mother-In-Law DEMAND that I become close to her. She calls me up saying passive aggressively she was FORCED to call me because I never call her though we are “family” now. Her family and she have screwed me over legitimately a few times and I avoid them as much as possible now, it’s this incredibly toxic bizarre relationship where they want to control me, where I live, what I wear, who I meet, what I do etc and show me off to their friends when it behooves them, want me to run errands with them so they can have me on their arms. They make it clear they want me to be a part of their “family” but to me that kind of forced “closeness” and manipulation isn’t what a “family” really is. Also I see them more frequently because they live 1 hour away and my family lives in another state. I fly home a few times a year to spend time with my family and EVERYTIME I go my Mother-In-Law goes “YOU WENT HOME AGAIN?” and is incredibly negative about it. She once asked “ARE YOUR PARENTS SICK OR SOMETHING? WHY DO YOU GO HOME SO OFTEN?” Her selfish, immature and manipulative nature is seriously worrisome for me and not something I want to get close to.

Post # 56
1125 posts
Bumble bee

I love them, and they’re kind and friendly people, but I’m not very close with them. None of the other daughter-in-laws are super close to them either, so I don’t feel too bad about it. Thankfully my husband is not the type to want to be at his parents house every week (they live about 10 mins away).

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