How Can I Lay Down Some Ground Rules

Question: Dear Luise: How can I lay down house rules for some sort of order to my adult son and his ungodly messy wife when at my home without alienating my son and grandchildren who are small. A.

Answer: Dear A.: As far as I know, you take your choice. If you try to create order out of chaos, I don’t know of any way to do that without alienating your son. It will be taken as criticism (which it is, of course) and in most situations like that, it is seen as a declaration of war. Then, it never ends. Sometimes sons and grandchildren even vanish into thin air as a result.

I wish I had something more positive to offer.

No matter how carefully you present it…the message is that she’s not OK as she is. To your son, (even though he probably knows all too well that it’s true)…it will be untenable that you pointed it out and even dared to set up rules in your own home.

I suggest that you take this issue to my Web-forum: www.motherinlawsunite.com for some support and understanding. A lot of wisdom is available there. Blessings, Luise

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