What Kind of MIL Do You Think You Will Be? (If You Aren't One Already)

Updated on October 05, 2011
P.S. asks from Houston, TX
22 answers

Good? Bad? Ugly? Annoying? Helpful? Helicopter?

I love my MIL. She is sweet, kind and giving to all. She lives about 5 states away :( and I wish she lived closer. She is one of my heroes and I hope to follow her example one day of being the kind of MIL who asks to offer advice and answers whatever question my DIL might have.

My husband has it pretty good too. My mom cooks, cleans, and babysits whether she is asked to or not. My husband jokes around that he is willing to put up w/my mom b/c she is such a good cook. My mom isn't happy unless she is spoiling the children w/attention and pushing food into someone's mouth - kids or adults.

I think I am going to be very hands off, esp if my kid marries an aggressive woman. I think I'll be respectful and helpful but I'm just not one to hoover unless I sense danger. I know I will remember birthdays and anniversaries, and not offer any advice that isn't asked for, that's for sure!

What can I do next?

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Featured Answers


answers from Los Angeles on

I HOPE to be cool, easy going, kind, knowledgeable when asked and very helpful with babysitting when asked. That's my goal!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

I am going to Rock my DIL's socks! I am not going to make her feel bad, tell her what to do with her kids, I wont favor my grandchildren, and I will just try to be supportive.
Boo Ya! Im going to rock! They are going to be lucky! lol!!!

Well, and because my son is SUuuuper handsome and going to have gorgeous babies!!

2 moms found this helpful

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answers from Norfolk on

If my son finds a girl who's a lot like me, we'll get along just fine.
If he marries a drama queen, it's going to be a long distance relationship.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Well, I only have daughters so I won't ever get to have a daughter-in-law. I think (hope) I'll be a good MIL to my son-in-law(s). But more importantly I hope to be a good mom to my adult daughters and a good grandmother to any children they may have. I hope to be the kind of mom, MIL, grandmother that is always willing to help and make things easier for my girls and their families.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I plan to do my best to mind my own business and not criticize. I want to be supportive as best I can. I guess it will depend on whether my future DIL's want a close relationship.

I don't think I'll know until I'm in it though. We never know how we will feel about certain things.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Austin on

As a MIL, I can tell you that it is easy if you have a good relationship with your children. If you have good communication with your children, then they can be honest with you about what is good that you do and what is not. Ask if they are not telling you. And accept their answers graciously. What we think is ideal may be not so ideal to our children and/or their spouses. What we envision is a good behavior or attitude may not be what they need, especially if your SIL or DIL is a very different personality than your child's or comes from a different upbringing.

Always keep in mind that you are from a different generation and sometimes a different background than your children-in-laws. Don't take criticism personally and always assume the best when something is said or done that doesn't quite hit you right.

Always compliment your kids and their spouses when you can so that they see that you appreciate who they are. If you don't like the way they are raising their kids or keeping their home, etc. just find what you do like and mention it. Give advice only when asked and ask more questions before you formulate your answer to get the whole picture. Accept whatever amount of time they allow you to spend with them. It is their decision. Be open to spending holidays and other occasions on days that are different than what the calendar reads. They will appreciate your flexibility.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Kalamazoo on

I guess it depends on what kind of DIL and Son IL I get!! HAHAHAHA!!!!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boca Raton on

I agree with LeeLee S.

Good MIL's know how to be seen and not heard. ;)

I also think it's different for sons than daughters . . . I have two sons so I realize that my job is to be loving and supportive but never in a usurping way.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

since i have a daughter, i hope to be a best friend to her (not now obviousyl my job now is mom but when shes older like i am with my mom) and a support system for her and her husband/wife if she goes that way. I hope to be open minded and not judge so harshly but step in if needed, and always be right there even at 3am if she or her so needs M..
If I ever have a son I think its diferent, you have to acknowldge, that you know his wife is number one in his life and support that, and be there for them but not overbearing, listen to her cues verbal and non verbal, let her know shes my daughter as well and i will be there day or night, offer to help instead of advice unless asked.
I think its diferent if you have a girl like i do.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

I'm going to be awesome! :) I just hope I like the DIL and SIL. If not, its going to be a very bumpy ride!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Not like mine for sure.She is not the worst outthere, but she is just not a MIL.
I moved here from a different country, had 3 small children and she never helped out.No matter how sick or tired I was at times, never a " is there anything I can do"??? Never going out for coffee, nothing period.She is just as bad as a grandma.
So I will give my DIL space, because I hate to intrude, but I would let her know, I'm only a phone call away. I would help with babysitting, so the "kids" could go on a little mini trip, or a movie etc.
Hope we could be friends, hopefully my little guy picks the right women :)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Bloomington on

One who remembers what it is like to have two very different MIL's and no mother. I have two daughters so I think I got a pass at having to worry about a DIL and I clashing. I think the son- in -law /MIL relationship is a lot easier. :)

I just want to be part of their lives because they WANT me in it, not because there is an obligation.

Great question!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

I hope I'm a good one. My MIL is warm, welcoming and within her abilities loves her grandkids. I'm just sorry for her that the older kids don't visit as much as they should. I grew up respecting my grandparents more and visiting them more. Anyway....I have learned a lot about when to keep my nose out of other people's business and while not 100% successful, I will probably do a lot better than I would have 10 years ago.

My mother is kind, loves to bring little presents, and would really like to see us more than she does. I don't need her gifts, but I do enjoy her company.

I hope that the kids don't marry someone I hate. That would be hard. I'd be civil, but I have a really hard time hiding when I can't stand someone.

So far, I've been alright with all the sks' boy/girlfriends. I figure that bodes well for the future.

This thread reminded me to email MIL and see when I should bring DD to show off her Halloween outfit.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Diego on

I have the best MIL!! They live 8 doors down and she is so unintrusive and supportive. I hope that I'm like her!



answers from Amarillo on

Best thing would be yourself. Take the leader of the son/daughter in law. Sometimes they want you involved and others don't. Do your best to be friends (that doesn't mean in the business) but there if needed.

I wish I were closer in (less distance) but it is what it is. Remember that they were brought up differently than you and that could be an adjustment on your part.

Give advise when asked for not before. Let them learn how to do things even if you know it won't work. Remember you are now number two in the lineup.

Have a good day and enjoy everybody.

The other S.

PS I keep thinking of the MIL on Everybody Loves Raymond as the worse nightmare kind.



answers from Houston on

That's a good question. I've thought a lot about this and I hope that I am an accepting and loving MIL to any daughter in laws I may have. I was raised to be very accepting and loving.

My MIL however is a mean nasty bully, and I pray all the time that I'm never like her. My mother however is a great mom and MIL. So hopefully I turn out more like that!


answers from Dallas on

Well I sure hope to be a good one that everyone loves... I just hope my sons marry women who aren't controlling. I do get scared of that. I want to be part of my children's live and my grandchildren. My mom had all girls and we all are closer to our side of the family than our husbands. My MIL isn't too active in our lives, more into my husband's sister's families. I love her, she's a nice lady, so I'm okay with our relationship. But it does scare me to think of my son's families spending more time with their wives side than with me. I do have one daughter, so her kids will probably be more spoiled by me, but time will tell. I will love all my grandbabies.

I hope my grandbabies will be able to spend the night at my house a lot. I have such fond memories of spending the nights at my grandparents houses, especially my dad's mom. She was the easy going grandma, very laid back. She had this old chest that had these beautiful gowns in it that my cousins and I would dress up in (my sisters too). We would put on her high heels (she had these sparkling silver ones I remember) and then put on her jewelry, it was always so fun to go there. We would have tea parties and make cookies, just great memories I have.

I'll try to hold my tongue but I will never promise too. I know I'll let them struggle a little to figure out things, unless asked, not meddle too much in their business and tell them to figure it out first. I've always thought my parents overstepped boundaries, out of love, but still overstep some areas of my families life.

I just hope my DILS and Son-IL will like me and respect my children, being complete partners with them.


answers from Jacksonville on

I think I will be a scary one. :) My best friends mom is awesome, a do everything for you person, a great grandma...etc. But her son in laws know not to cross the line with her, which is really hard to do with her.

Seriously I think if either of those boys hurt her daughters they better move to Mexico....that's the MIL I want to be! LOL



answers from Salt Lake City on

I can honestly tell you I would love to think that I would just stand back and let my sons have their life....but I know myself better than that. I hope when they do settle down ( much later ) that I at least like her. My mother in law and I didnt get along until about 5 years ago the scary thing is I think we are too much alike. My mother is the MIL from hell not just for my DH but for all the DH's in my family but she is just an unhappy person. I dont really know I guess it depends on the girl the interaction with my boys. Lets never forget however they are MY boys...just kidding


answers from Houston on

Well I too have a great MIL, so I hope I will follow her example! I have 2 sons and one more due in about 5 wks, so I will definitely want to have a good relationship with the mama who bears my grandchildren!! I think being and MIL to a woman is very different than being on to a man. My mother is always going to be around bc well she is my mom and we are both women. A mother releases her son to go conquer the world in a different way. I mean my husband does call his mom for advice, don't get me wrong, but I call my mom like daily with little questions about how to cook this, or where to buy that on sale or what does she think about some friend situation. She is my mom but also a great older girlfriend and mentor, my husband talks to his mom every couple weeks or so and my MIL doesn't see my kids as often bc she has 4 daughters and bc she is my husband's mother. I mean she is always invited but and she calls me to check in firs but not too much, she has a great sense of how present to be. I hope I am like that and that I make my DILs want to be around me and enjoy my company and that I am there help to them and don't ever make them feel that I am some sort of icon they need to live up to. That is my goal, to be in my son's lives but not in an overbearing way and to be invited into my son's families and to be a source of wisdom, love and sweets ;)



answers from Dover on

I hope I'll be a good one!

I love my MIL. She drives me a little crazy with some of her "home spun" advice sometimes, like putting clear finger nail pollish on my son's shingles rash, but she is never mean, remembers all the kids on every holiday or special day, and treats me like a daughter.

I want to be the MIL that is there, but not intrusive. I have always told my husband that when we retire I want to buy a Winabego (sp?) so we can visit, but never intrude. I want to help, but not interfere. And I want to love my grandbabies!



answers from Pittsburgh on

Hopefully, I will have a DIL, O. day.
I will probably use my own MIL as an example of what NOT to be and do.

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