In-laws become your parents as soon as you are married to their siblings or child. As members of your immediate family, your responsibilities to them differ depending on where you are and how “immediate family” is defined. For example, specific regulations in California refer to in-laws as immediate family. However, some Missouri laws don`t list in-laws at all. Our relationships and family obligations for our in-laws are interesting and often difficult to navigate, both legally and personally. There are different aspects that we have to take into account when we look at this, whether for legal, cultural or social reasons. In some countries, a married woman moves in with her in-laws and symbolically becomes part of her family. In the United States, some families with extended family members live together — a man can live with his wife, children, and mother and stepfather — but more often than not, each nuclear family lives separately. Originally, in-laws meant “everyone from a relationship that is not natural” or “not by blood.” Insurance contracts are another area where the definition of immediate family may vary. Some insurance policies provide protection to stepparents as immediate family members. Others explicitly exclude coverage or are somewhat ambiguous, and there have been many legal disputes over this. A son-in-law is someone who is a step-parent, such as your husband`s sister or your wife`s father.
You can call your spouse`s entire family your in-laws. Sometimes relationships with in-laws can fill in the gaps you`ve experienced in your own family. A brother-in-law could become the brother you never had. Maybe your father died or was absent when you were young – your stepfather could fill that gap for you. In-laws are your parents while you are married to their blood relatives. From a legal point of view, the most pertinent question is whether the in-laws are your immediate family. Some jurisdictions and legal contracts, such as certain insurance policies, treat step-parents as close relatives, but others exclude them. Showing interest in your in-laws` rituals and traditions is one way to facilitate intercultural relationships. It will also be helpful to invite your in-laws to learn more about your own cultural beliefs. Mutual respect is essential.
I started exploring this topic after going through my own divorce. Most of the time, I`ve always had a very happy relationship with my in-laws, and I was afraid of losing that special bond once my ex and I broke up. I realized that even though we are no longer legally bound and I no longer have legal ties to my default in-laws, we are still bound by years of love, memories, and children. I am happy to still be able to call them my loved ones, even though the basis of our relationship has changed. Your spouse`s entire family becomes your in-laws as soon as you say “I want”. Yes, even his cousins and grandparents. Some relatives will be closer than others, so a father or stepmother can often be considered a close or immediate family, but a step-cousin or uncle will not fall into the same category. When it was founded, parents-in-law were specifically used to describe any non-blood-related relative whom the Church forbade you to marry upon the death of your spouse: your spouse`s siblings, parents and children, and even your own brothers-in-law, stepparents, and stepchildren.
Stepfather, as The Word Detective explains, could have meant your spouse`s father or your mother`s new husband. But at the end of the 19th century. By this time, the Church of England and other Protestant religions had established their own canonical laws with different marriage rules, the colloquial definition had expanded to include all Marian parents, and stepparents became an expression in their own right. The first written mention comes from an 1894 article in Blackwood`s Edinburgh Magazine, which states that “the position of `in-laws` (a happy expression attributed to us not knowing what reason there is for Her Majesty that no one can be more familiar with the article) is often not very conducive to the promotion of happiness.” The relationship between in-laws is that you are married, and for better or worse, in-laws will be many more years in your life. If you and your partner have children, you are related to your in-laws, even if the marriage doesn`t last. As long as your in-laws are decent people, maintaining a good relationship with them will reduce your personal stress and improve your quality of life. It will also reduce the burden of your marriage. If you have children, they will also benefit from a happy relationship with your in-laws. Of course, it`s not just your responsibility to maintain a good relationship, and it helps if everyone in the family does their part.
The origin of the term “in-laws” is somewhat surprising. It has nothing to do with the legal system as we know it. Instead, it dates back to canon law as early as the 14th century. Canon law is the rule and order of the Church. In this case, we are referring to the Catholic Church. One of these laws strictly prohibited individuals from marrying certain non-blood relatives if their spouse died. Over time, the word became every marital parent. In other words, tensions between people and their in-laws have existed for as long as the sentence itself. If that`s part of what brought you here in the first place, here are 12 tips from the 19th century for dealing with it.
While we are all busy remembering that the plural of mother-in-law is mother-in-law and not mother-in-law, we often forget to ask a much more interesting question: why do we call them in-laws in the first place? Empathy and an open mind and heart will go a long way in maintaining a happy relationship with your in-laws and living a happier life. Feathers are sometimes dishevelled for you and your partner. The most important thing to remember is that no matter where the in-laws enter, you and your partner are one unit and you need to focus on supporting each other. If you`ve recently gone through a divorce, the question of whether stepparents are considered relatives of the family may have come to mind. After such an event, everything changes. The relationships I once had with my in-laws (now ex) are part of evolution. During my research, I discovered some interesting facts. It seems amusing that there are also many historical references to tensions with in-laws. Some of the 19th century advice on maintaining good in-laws are good for laughs. An 1896 article in an Alabama newspaper suggested that a man should always vote like his father-in-law.
Another publication from 1886 stated that a woman should be as attractive to her mother-in-law as she was to her lover. Depending on the reason for your question, it`s always a good idea to do some local research on the legal definition of “immediate family.” And always read the fine print in your contracts. Relationships between in-laws vary between cultures. In some cultures, it is common for a woman to move in with her new husband`s family. The concept of collectivism influences this tradition. Collectivism focuses on family or group goals. When two individuals from very different cultures fall in love and form a union, relationships can become very difficult. Misunderstandings in cross-cultural relationships are common, and it`s important to keep lines of communication open and honest. Inbreeding has genetic ties, and marriage-based relationships are legally linked.
Relations between stepparents combine marriage and consanguinity. You might assume it`s because your spouse`s family members are legally related to you, not by blood, but the law in question has nothing to do with the marriage certificate your agent sends to the county official. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, son-in-law refers to canon law, the rules and regulations of a church that govern, among other things, parents you are not allowed to marry. Since the first known mention of the term in English is brother-in-law from the 14th century, she probably cited the canon law of the Catholic Church (since the Church of England was not founded until the 16th century). In many other parts of the world, a new couple leaves home to start an independent life together. The focus is on individualism – our individual needs and wishes. Relations with in-laws are notoriously difficult. Mothers-in-law and fathers-in-law are the subject of many jokes, memes and movies.
Even in the botanical world, the mother-in-law`s tongue plant gets its name from the sharpness of its sword-shaped leaves. The mother-in-law spice is a fiery masala that evokes images of a sharp-tongued mother-in-law. But it doesn`t need to be so sharp. Here are five tips to smooth the relationship between in-laws.