Families very rarely get along most of the time.

What this article seems to be lacking is a general concept of compromise. Families, a lot of the time, involve compromise. The more people added and the more extended the family becomes the more diverse beliefs, feelings, and opinions become. If we all decided to protect ourselves from these differences by wrapping ourselves in our own little 'me' bubble, then we will ultimately deny ourselves being part of a family unit. By marrying in to a family, you have to accept that your in-laws may differ from you in many ways. They have perhaps brought up their children (including your spouse) in a way you may not agree with, they may hold political or religious views you can't abide. But in marry their child you have to show a level of acceptance, respect and compromise. If not for your own sanity, for the sake of your relationship.

Heaven knows, this only becomes more and more important once grandchildren are added to the mix. You surely cannot apply the same 'healthy selfishness' when children are involved. Denying a child a relationship with their grandparents just because you do not have a good relationship with them, is just plain selfish and certainly something the child will not thank you for later in life. Indeed, the idea of compromise, of grinning-and-bearing-it, and of biting your tongue become increasingly important the older the child gets. You may not respect them as your in-laws, but you have to respect them as your children's grandparents. But then I am working on the assumption that this article is written pre-children.

Harmony within a family environment only ever really comes about when people are respectful of each others beliefs, opinions and feelings, but also when they are able to accept that there will be disagreements, and sometimes criticism. This is just part of a healthy family dynamic. I'm not saying you have to be a complete walk over. You have the right to voice your opinions and views as much as anyone else does, but hiding away from annoying family members really does not do any good in the long term. You can't hide forever without it ultimately affecting the relationship that first brought you in to their lives – your marriage.

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