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His sister enters our room

By Admin

Added 14th February 2019 01:48 PM

When she visits, she enters our bedroom and picks my clothes and shoes without permission.

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When she visits, she enters our bedroom and picks my clothes and shoes without permission.

MARRIAGE RELATIONSHIPS
 
My sister-in-law is very close to  my husband (her brother), but the problem is that she takes me for granted. When she visits, she enters our bedroom and picks my clothes and shoes without permission.
 
Many times, she does not return them. I find this disrespectful, but I do not want to say anything because I do not want to become unpopular with my in-laws. What should I do?
 
Juliet, Nansana
 
EXPERT OPINION
 
YOU NEED TO HANDLE THE SITUATION TACTFULLY
 
Dear Juliet, Intricacies of in–law relationships cause loyalty dilemmas and one requires courage to handle them.
 
Balancing loyalties, drawing boundaries between oneself and the people one loves and grew up with before getting a partner, is tricky for some individuals.
 
The early bonding leaves a legacy in one’s entire life and it becomes hard for some people to let go.
 
Couples need awareness through pre–marital counselling so that they are able to acquire skills to help them draw both the psychological and physical boundaries to protect their marriage relationship from external interference.
 
In your case, you have not stated for how long you have been married, and whether your husband and his sister used to live under one roof before you came into the picture.
 
Do the two of you come from the same culture? If some or all of what is stated above is in the affirmative, then you have to be tactful in handling this dilemma.
 
You may find that your sister in–law is struggling with ego issues and does not see the need to seek permission to enter her brother’s bedroom and pick your clothes and shoes.
 
You may also need to learn more about their family background, especially their values. You may have to do the following to resolve this conflict before the situation gets worse: If your sister-in-law is younger than you, you can talk about her behaviour teasingly and affirmatively to ensure you make your point known.
 
Secondly, you can confide in your husband and explain to him how his sister’s behaviour is stressing you out without being accusatory, because when you have his support, everything will become easier to deal with.
 
Third, if your husband does not take any action and you do not want to put up with this behaviour perpetually, you may consider telling her in plain words that you are not comfortable with her behaviour.
 
Do you think it is proper that your private life with your husband should be sacrificed at the altar of popularity? Think through and make a choice.
 
CLEMENCE BYOMUHANGI, COUNSELLOR

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