Question by Anonymous:
I am getting married and my future mother-in-law wants to be VERY involved in the planning. My mom and I always dreamed of doing this together, and she is forcing her way into all the planning. What can I do with her so that she feels involved, but is not in the middle of everything?
Answer by Dr. Laviage:
This is your day and you are allowed to have it go as closely as you have been picturing it since you were a little girl. Having said that, remember that mothers and mothers-in-law were also little girls once, too, and while they already had their weddings, they have also dreamed of the day they get to plan a wedding with their daughters. If this is a fairly traditional event, the good news is that your MIL already has a very important project to plan – the rehearsal dinner! So, make sure she knows this is an important event and the two of you will work together to make sure that goes off without a hitch. As for the actual wedding planning, I’m wondering if you can’t also find a project for her to do too – making her a feel a part of the planning while not necessarily a part of all of it. In addition, without feeling she is making decisions, it would be a nice gesture to fill her in as you decide on certain aspects – for example, share with her the bridesmaids dresses once you have picked them out, or the color scheme you have chosen, and you never know – she may have an idea or two that fits perfectly with your theme! You get to call the shots, but if you have a MIL who is wanting to support you, you may find yourself needing all the support you can get during this happy, but stressful, time.