What Not To Do...

I love reading and books of all kinds, therefore, I cannot resist stopping to browse through bookstores. While doing that very thing this week, I ran across some quite interesting titles; they all began in a similar manner: "What Not To Do in Polite Company"," What Not To Name Your Baby"," What Not To Do In Love" and "What Not To Do When You Graduate". I HAD to pick up a copy of the "What Not To Name Your Baby" book...just to see if my name was included in it (you know you would do that too!) And just as I had suspected...there it was. The list included the name and then beside it was the "bad side" of naming your child that particular name. I already knew without looking what the "bad side" of mine was; the "nicknames". Barb, Babs and Barbie. OK, so I agree...I HATE ALL of these "nicknames" and always have! Anyone who knows me, KNOWS that they just don't suit me at all! I'm just Barbara...please call me that. However, discovering these books, gave me an idea for another prospective "What Not To" book. It would be called, "What Not To Do As a Mother-in-Law".

Personally, I think that I am not equipped to be a mother-in-law. I believe I am too young and not mature enough yet for the "responsibilities" that go along with the title. OK, maybe it's not the "responsibilities", but my MOUTH! Robby is constantly telling me to "check my attitude"...Hmmm, what's that supposed to mean? I checked and I still have one. I must first state, that I think that we mother-in-laws are a bit misunderstood. You know, like the wicked witch in the play, "Wicked". She was not really wicked (as everyone in "The Wizard of Oz" would have you believe); that was just the perception that people had of her. Anyway, I have a few suggestions that I would include in such a book and they go as follows:

1. Do NOT give your opinion on ANYTHING, even if they ask for it. Because this could be a
trick. And once you have opened your mouth and given your opinion, you can't take it back;
It is yours forever and they will REMEMBER it...they have a "memory like an elephant" and
this one thing may come back to haunt you for years to come.

2. Do NOT be "too nice". Have you ever heard of that old saying (also a song in the play,
"Wicked"), "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished"? ENOUGH SAID!

3. Do NOT tell your son or daughter ANYTHING you would not want repeated, because they
WILL repeat it. And then you are back to "The Elephant Clause".

4. Do NOT expect "time sharing" among the couple's families to be "fair". It will not be and I
have been told many times that, "Life isn't fair". I believe it.

These are just a few of the suggestions that I would have for the book, but I have also learned a thing or two about joining two families. I understand why there are problems adjusting (just as many for the "in-laws" as the newly weds). We are all people coming from different backgrounds and we have all been raised differently...and, of course, we all want our own way (you know, what we consider to be the only RIGHT way to do things). WAIT A MINUTE!!! I have heard all of this somewhere before...oh yea, the speech I gave the future newly weds at the rehearsal dinner (CRAP! Don't you hate it when your own words come back to haunt you?) I think what I said, was to "embrace your differences" and learn to grow from them (Did I really say that?? Had to have been the red wine talking). Well, I suppose I will try to take my own advice as I embark upon this new adventure as "Mother-in-Law Extraordinaire"!

1 comment

  1. You are and will continue to be an extraordinaire MoM in Law.