Saturday, May 14, 2011

In laws

As promised in last weeks' Friday (twenty)Five, a post on in laws...

When you get married, the old adage says, you marry your spouse’s family. Whether you agree or not, it’s true. When I married George I got his whole big, complicated, complex, and AWESOME family. He has a mom, a dad, a step mom, a step dad, grandparents, step grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins. The whole bit. There are a lot of them and whether I wanted to or not, I got this family when I married Geo.

It was a hard adjustment at first; growing up you’re very family centric to your OWN family. You have your parents, siblings, etc, it’s a tough concept to wrap your head around. Wait a minute, you mean now I’ve got IN LAWS, what in the hell does that mean?

To me, in laws are just more family. I love a big family gathering, we don’t need to be blood to have fun and enjoy ourselves and the longer I’m married the more I realize that by actually TRYING to love these people and integrating my life with my husband’s familys’ life, OUR married life is much richer.

I’m not really religious, I don’t think the Bible is the be all and end all, however I do think it has some good points and some great words of wisdom. One of the things the bible says is to “honor thy mother and father”; when you’re married, if you say “traditional” vows, you vow to “honor your spouse” I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately; the concept of not only honoring PARENTS but George. If we are to honor our parents and honor our spouse, doesn’t it only make sense to honor our SPOUSES’ parents? Shouldn’t we treat our in laws the same way we treat OUR parents? The answer, at least for me, is yes.

I’m not saying I’m perfect; I’m not saying this has been an easy concept for me. I have struggled mightily sometimes with being part of a huge in law family (and really, it’s TWO in law families because both of Geo’s parents are remarried) HOWEVER I’ve made a conscious decision that I will honor my (in law) parents as much as I honor my parents and as much as I honor Geo, if for no other reason than I expect him to do the same in return.

So…my question (always rhetorical, of course) for all of you is…are you honoring your in laws like you honor your own parents? Are you honoring your spouse the way they deserve to be honored? Are YOU being honored the way you deserve to be honored? What can you be doing in your daily life TO honor those around you?

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