Last updateTue, 12 Dec 2017 12pm


Are you living with your in-laws?


All marriages have their unique challenges. However,sometimes when you are doing your best for each other and enjoying a fulfilling relationship, issues outside your control may put your marriage at risk.

One such threats is the in-law factor. In Ghana, it is said to be a leading cause of divorce, fourth only to money, sex, children and parenting.

The in-law factor is especially threatening if you live with them

Why live with in-laws

Money is a big issue in many young marriages. Living with in-law gives financial relief, especially if the breadwinner losses a job. In some cases, a man travels abroad and finds it safe for the wife to stay with his mother because in Ghana, it is culturally acceptable to stay with in-laws.

There are cases when a wife is pregnant and needs an experienced hand to give care. In some situations, parents are sick, old and lonely and need support and care.

Some stay with in-laws for convenience. It may take a shorter time to go to work and parents are around to cook and care for their young children.

Staying with in laws gives the children an opportunity to develop closer bond with grandparents and gives wonderful lasting memories.

The challenge

Living with in-laws can be a complicated situation, especially in Ghana where by tradition, you have to give your in-law unconditional respect and to treat him or her like a small god.

Your in-law may see your behaviour as unacceptable even when it suits your spouse. Your in-laws comes into your life and you lack privacy to the things you love to do.

You have restrictions about the use of bathroom, kitchen and living room and even romance and love making. This makes it hard to develop couple identity because you do only what pleases your in-law.

If your in-law did not like you before the marriage, this could be a payback time. You cook what she wants and not what you prefer.

And be sure she will complain about whatever you prepare; too much or too little salt, pepper or spice and all. If your husband tries to defend you, she could say you have bewitched him!

You will have a lot to do but your in law may not appreciate but will remember in detail your little mistakes and blow it out to the public. No matter how hard you try, you get stressed.

Today studies show women who stay with their in-laws are three times as likely to get high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetics.

Are you living with your in-law?

God, who is the author of marriage, is a God of order.

Four times in the Bible, He emphasizes his blueprint for marriage, “a man leaves his father and mother, cleaves to his wife and become one flesh.”

You have to follow this threefold mystery to hope for a fulfilling marriage. You must leave physically to hope for a successful marriage; otherwise you are not ready for marriage and may put your marriage at great risk.

Living with your in-law is not a good idea. It can be as close to hell as you can get but if circumstances stare at you in the face and you have no alternative, do all you can to make life comfortable for yourself and others.

You can survive living with your in-law and still love your spouse. However, make sure your stay is as short as possible and live as one flesh with your spouse.


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