When you decide to marry, you’re making the decision to introduce your wife’s entire family into your life. As her parents grow older, their care will become a shared responsibility, and you can expect to see her parents regularly for events and family occasions. Building a strong relationship with her father is important, though he may be hesitant to open up to you at first. These activities can help you draw that bond closer.
Extended Family Vacations
Getting to know your father-in-law can be a high-stress situation, but putting yourself in a situation where it’s not just the two of you can help alleviate the pressure. Taking your in-laws with you on a vacation provides the relief of having a group environment while also providing you with the opportunity for meaningful one-on-one time. You’ll be able to show your spouse that you’re committed to getting to know her family. Just be sure to build time into the schedule for some face-to-face opportunities.
There’s no better place to get to know someone than out in the great wild. A hunting trip gives you both shared objectives and presents plenty of opportunities for the two of you to open up to one another without pressure. Consider scheduling a trip to somewhere like a blackbuck antelope hunting ranch. Away from the standards of civilization, you’ll both be more comfortable being open and honest. As an added bonus, you can demonstrate your value as a provider for his daughter.
Catching a Sports Game
When you marry into a family, you’re committing to all band together through both the good and the bad. Unfortunately, rivalries can easily develop if her father feels like his daughter is replacing him with you. That’s why it’s important to remind him that you’re both on the same team. Sitting down in front of a game with a beer can give you both a cause to rally behind together. Depending on your relationship, this could mean taking him out for a day at the stadium or just inviting him over to catch the game in front of your flat screen.
Healthy relationships are built on trust, and there are few things that require more trust than the ability to cook together. Whether that means collaborating to get the Thanksgiving turkey just right or sharing master duties in front of the 4th of July grill, cooking together can deepen the bonds with your father-in-law immensely. Just remember that this isn’t about proving who’s better with the barbecue tongs. Trust and a willingness to put your own pride aside is crucial here.
Whatever activities you choose to indulge in with your father-in-law, just remember that this is about making him feel comfortable with you. Take the time to understand his hobbies and passions, and make the effort to involve yourself in them.