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Living with the in-laws

2 months ago / married life / family

When they say jump, you say how high.

So, the hubs has been away for some 1.5 months now and we have another 3 weeks to go and I was talking to some friends recently who told me that they have friends who would move home during this period cause they "don't know" how to live with their in-laws alone...

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Erm, how hard can it be to eat birds' nest?

Hahaha. I kid.

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(Not about the birds' nest though... it's super gao. I woke up to GLOWING skin.)

I also sometimes have friends who'll ask me how I live with so many people in the house... I mean I have my in-laws, my brother-in-law and his family (i.e. his wife and two kids), the hub's sister and her boyfriend who shuffle between Singapore and London...

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And buys me bakchormee when I can't make it for breakfast

As for my sister-in-law (i.e. the hub's brother's wife), I'm not gonna lie... we didn't get off on a fantastic start when we both started living together. I mean there was no crazy Channel 8 drama but well, we were cordial but not close-close like BFFs.

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These days however, we have started sharing clothes hehe and I'm always happy to offload the 1234567 beauty products brands often PR drop me cause, I have only one face over here wtf.

(Ignore mess at the back, was packing suitcase for yet another trip.)

I can't deny that it's maybe because we live in a fairly spacious place so we all get a good amount of privacy (I get the top floor to myself for my bedroom + closet + home office) and due to our different job natures, we often travel for work. The hubs and I are home only 6 months a year effectively, his sister and her boyfriend are based in London and only come back twice a year. His parents are retired and are enjoying their silver years together... but 5 years of living like that has made me NOT want to move out haha.

Here are my 2 cents on living with your in-laws:

1) Understand that blood is NOT thicker than water

I have always believed that we all have a choice to choose who we love. I do NOT love people because they are my family, but because of their actions, our interaction and as result, they become who they are to me. I love my nephews like anything (in fact people often say I talk about them like they're my kids wtf) but it's really because I like them for who they are as individuals - intelligent, cute and with long lashes haha. In fact, before the younger one was two and could talk, I barely acknowledged his presence because erm, I didn't have any attachment to him as a person lol. Likewise, I don't think my mother-in-law cares for me less than she does for her own children just because I didn't come from her birth canal wtf. I'm not sure if I'm making sense here... but I hope you get what I mean!

2) Communicate directly

Do NOT go through your spouses to play broken telephone. You need something done, then speak directly to the person/s involved instead of going through the unnecessary extra steps cause you feel paiseh. Also, settling your own stuff on your own really just saves time for everybody.

3) Contribute but don't nitpick

We all live together so as a household, so yes, we should ALL contribute. It could be household chores, it could be paying for the utilities or the newspapers subscription but remember, it is the contribution we are after... that everybody is doing a part for this family and NOT how much each is contributing. If you are going to forever look at who pays more and who pays less, then you're going to live your life feeling short-changed over the smallest things... like your sister-in-law ate a slice of bread from the fresh loaf that you bought! OMG!

4) Talk about the tough stuff

I know people usually advocate the reverse - that we do NOT talk about politics, religion and/or money. But well, these are people you live with and probably have to spend a lot of time with... and not some random cute guy you're tryna impress at a club so yes, I don't think we should neglect these weightier issues. Besides, it is quite fun a breakfast topic to argue learn how to agree to disagree on whether Hillary or Trump makes a greater nutjob lol.

5) Do what makes you happy

You see, we CHOSE to live with my in-laws because it is what makes me HAPPY. You have to be happy with your decisions... both big and small. If you're unhappy with the idea of living with your in-laws or unhappy that you can't use the kitchen freely or unhappy that the meals are not the paleo, gluten-free type that you want... then, you'll never be happy isn't it?