real life

'My father-in-law is making me uncomfortable in my own home.'

Ah, in-laws. They’re a very tricky topic for couples around the world.

We’ve all debated whether or not they like us, been forced to navigate their excruciating family gatherings, and had them interfere with every little detail of our lives.

We love them really, it’s just sometimes they can be hard work.

Of course, some people lucky enough to get really well with their in-laws, but even that can be problematic.

As part of a recent MumsNet thread, user Stiffanky was struggling with the freedom with which her in-laws come and go.

“We live very near my [husband’s] parents. They are lovely people but seem to not want to use the front doorbell when they call round,” she writes.

“Instead they’ll either just appear at the back door at all times of day or night or, like my father-in-law did this morning at 7:15am, come in through the garage and through the internal door, shouting ‘hello’.

“Is it unreasonable to expect them to use the front doorbell like everyone else? I can’t wander around in my undies in my own house!!”

This sparked much discussion among MumsNet members, debating the etiquette of in-laws around the world.

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“Bloody hell, lock your house up! Lock the garage, internal door and side gate (/install a side gate so people can’t just march round to your back door). Your home sounds pretty insecure,” one commenter replied.

Another suggested shock-therapy might be the key to making the in-laws use the front door.

“Depends how shameless you are. Maybe let him catch you doing naked yoga a few times and he’ll learn?” she said.

Well, that’s one way to get them to knock before they just come on in.

I suggest a nice but firm note pinned on the back door, directing your in-laws to the doorbell and a side of manners.

How do you manage your in-laws popping over unannounced? Let us know in the comments…

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