Ask Toi: Is it okay to not want to entertain your spouse’s family if the spouse is not home?

Depends on the level of comfort with the spouse’s family. If your relationship is only the type where you go to family functions but don’t really have them over to your home the answer is no. Even if the relationship is good but isn’t close where you would be comfortable in your own home the answer is still no.

If your spouse isn’t home to be buffer between and it will cause you to be uncomfortable than why bother?  No one should be in someone’s home and making them feel uncomfortable where they should be the most at peace. You can’t always control the elements once you leave your front door but you always reserve the right to preserve the climate in your own home.  That’s why even the ones in the home be on the same page let alone others who do not live there to come in with drama, discord, or just to change the atmosphere already created.

The issue with in-laws is simple, even when all things are well you don’t always feel like being “on.” We all have busy lives and trying to juggle life, work, personal well being, date your spouse, love your kids, and balance between both sides of the family is a lot. Hosting your in-laws will not make them like any more either. Do NOT fall into the trap that by doing the most will make them reach out and love on you if the energy to do isn’t coming from both sides.

The fact that you question says you aren’t comfortable so host a dinner etc. when you all can enjoy some time together. Having in laws over can be a place of normal anxiety as is no need to complicate it any further by having a spouse who isn’t there to share in the hosting duties. 

The biggest understanding is that this is not just for in-laws but your family and friends too. A home should be about peace and when the peace doesn’t return to you than stop letting others infratrate your home. 

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