7th February 2013 - QA 1

Please give me some tips to improve my relationship with my mother-in-law.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:

Listen, you have a different scale for your mother and a different scale for your mother-in-law. Now why do you do that?
When your mother used to scold you, it never really touched you. You are thick skinned when your mother shouts at you or scolds you. But when your mother-in-law scolds you, it shakes you very deeply, isn't it?
How many of you have this experience? Come on, tell me! Some of you are shy to raise your hands.
See, we have two standards, one for our mother and one for our mother-in-law. If you have the same standard for your mother-in-law as you have for your mother then the problem will be gone.

The second tip is, just don't argue with her. Win her over with love. Whatever she may say, if you say, 'Yes', what will happen to you? Arguments and misunderstandings happen when both sides cooperate to fight. If the one side does not cooperate to fight, there will be no arguments.
If your mother in law says, 'It is very hot', you say, 'Yes mother-in-law, it is.'
If she says, 'Day is night and night is day', say, 'Yes mother-in-law, you are right. I totally agree with you.'
Flow with her for some time and then you will see that you can win her over.

So, win her over with love and agreement.
See, when you agree, how can someone fight with you. Become soft from inside. This is the skill.

So you first try this and then you tell me.

This problem between mother-in-law and daughter-in-law is an ancient, eternal problem I would say.

In the ashram, there is a general rule, that you can bring your problems here, but you cannot take them back with you.

So one lady stood up and said, 'Then can I leave my mother-in-law here.'
I said, 'Let me ask your mother-in-law first, what is her problem.'

Getting rid of people and things is not the answer, but dealing with them with skill is the answer. And silence is the mother of all skills - silencing this chattering mind with a few minutes of deep meditation. Then you will see that everything changes.