If you were expecting a new shopping and spa buddy, it may seem strange that your sister-in-law would be jealous of you and your spouse, but it’s surprisingly common. The issue may arise because she sees you as a potential threat to her bond with her brother. She’s had them for so many years either as a big sibling to look up to or a loveable little brother, but now you’re in the picture, permanently. Sometimes a sister-in-law will view this as her sibling being taken away from her. Now you get them all to yourself and she gets less time to be with them.
Even though you know this isn’t true, you may find yourself stuck with a rude and downright mean sister-in-law. The troubling part is that while you may get hit with the brunt of her crappy attitude, your spouse may never see any of it. This may lead to many frustrating discussions in which you try to tell your partner about her bad behavior, only to be told it’s nonsense and the sister-in-law is not the person you are making her out to be.
Her behavior can vary. She may completely ignore you when you are talking or she may say rude things and, in general, be very negative. Whatever her attitude, it’s important that you not react to it. Remember – she is the one with the problem. Not you. There’s no reason to let her anger and issues get to you. Instead, you can kill her with kindness. People often don’t know what to do when they are mean and instead of seeing a frustrated response, get a smile and a pleasant comment. If she sees you as easily angered or flustered, then she will realize she has control. Your sister-in-law should not have control over you. You married your spouse because you loved them – anything she says should not be able to change that.
You should plan to take back control (if necessary) by ignoring your sister-in-law at the right times and being polite the rest of the time. She will soon realize that everything negative that she does has no effect on you. This may result in her attempting to amp up her rudeness, but in doing so out of frustration, it may betray her to your spouse, thus bringing the whole issue into the light and shutting down the problem completely. Or she may discover that you aren’t there to steal away her beloved brother and that you are a good person and she is in the wrong.
It can be frustrating and annoying, but by sticking to your guns when your sister-in-law comes around, you should be able to disarm the situation and eventually become friends with her.
Have any juicy sister-in-law stories?! We’d love to hear just how catty your sister-in-law was/is and what you did to fix the situation….so please leave a comment.