You would have come across various prose and poetic pieces on various media on ‘Mother’ but have you encounter any write ups or poetry on ‘Mother-in-Law’? We must treat all females of our mother’s age as our own mothers, then where had all the praise vanished for a mother-in-law? We celebrate mother’s day but have you heard of any mother-in-law’s day. It may exist but with a low profile.
When I asked these questions to some of my friends, I got a single reiterated answer; a mother-in-law (MIL) cannot, by any means, replace or match the mother. Surprisingly, even though, the same person is playing both the roles but the differences in the character and the nature creep in automatically by design. Some of the male friends did admit that their MIL showers almost similar affection as their mother but the females unanimously had a single answer and that was in negative.
And, I too felt the difference seeing the females getting such biased treatment by their MIL. Though, not many differences are experienced with father and the Father-in-law by the couples, when it comes to mother and MIL, it turns out to be drastic. This is supported by the well accepted conclusion that, a woman cannot by any reason, treat her daughter and daughter-in-law (DIL) equal. And this is because of the fact that she sets and follows separate rules for her daughter which change radically when it comes to DIL.
A woman wants her daughter to live in all sorts of comforts after marriage but the comfort levels offered by her to her DIL are mostly questionable.
She wants a nuclear family for her daughter so that she doesn’t over-burden herself by serving the in-laws in a joint family after marriage but she expects her DIL to serve the entire clan. She imparts ‘special wisdom’ to her daughter on how to handle the in-laws diplomatically but expects her DIL to be simple and truthful.
She wants house maids for her daughter in her in-laws place but she expects her DIL to be superwoman who can singlehandedly complete all the tasks, including cooking, cleaning, washing etc. DIL are, in general never relieved from work to spend some leisurely moments.
She wishes to be in touch with her daughter through phone etc. when she is in her in-laws house but feels irritated when her DIL’s mother calls.
For her, daughter’s husband is responsible for all the faults or quarrels in the house, but her son remains the most innocent person on earth. She also holds responsible her daughter’s MIL for any dispute in their house but she always targets her DIL for all the disputes in her house.
She wishes her daughter’s MIL behave like a real mother but she never takes any step for becoming the same for her DIL. She expects new clothes, jewellery etc. for her daughter at special occasions but never thinks of gifting such things to her DIL.
She hardly cares for her DIL during pregnancy but expects the in-laws of her daughter to take care of everything during her daughter’s pregnancy. She explains the entire diet chart to her daughter over phone but hardly reveals anything to her DIL during pregnancy. Some over-biased mothers send fruits and nuts to her daughter but seldom provide such comfort to their DIL. For her daughter, giving birth to either a boy or a girl is OK, but she like an orthodox uneducated woman, expects her DIL to give birth only to a son!
She wants her daughter to come to her place anytime as her wish and remain there but feels annoyed when her DIL expresses similar wishes.
She wants complete freedom for her daughter as far as wearing the clothes, eating habits or discipline is concerned, but she imposes all sorts of rules and regulations for her DIL.
She keeps assisting her daughter and feels proud of her achievements but most of the times doesn’t get pleased by her DIL success. If her daughter is a working woman, she gets worried of her comfort levels after office hours, but if her DIL is a working woman, she expects her to take care of all the household activities after coming from office. An exclusive example of double standards people possess.
There are many such examples which are too disgraceful to be discussed but still experienced by many females after their marriage. And then the questions arise, how is it possible for a woman to maintain dual character? Why is that a woman doesn’t understand another woman? Why a woman feels happy in torturing other woman? Why a MIL forgets the fact that she also was once a newly wed DIL. She also must have faced similar challenges and problems then why doesn’t she want her DIL life to be smooth and simple? Why she can’t let the DIL feel ‘at home’? Why can’t she create such an environment that her DIL’s forgets her original family?
There may be few DILs who possibly consider the above statements as wrong. I wish it should have been. As keeping DIL happier may, by the law of nature, keep daughter’s life also happier. MILs are also humans, so are the DILs. So, this plea is to every MIL, please embrace your DIL like your own daughter and shower her with all your love and affection so that DIL should start doubting if she was born to you or to someone else? Days never remain the same always, but making them favourable depends on our own acts and deeds. What you sow, so you reap theory applies everywhere. If we understand this truth in time, our life on planet earth will become easier.