I have been reflecting lately about all the chaos and misery I have let mil cause in my life and marriage. I have learned what kind of person I don't want to be or become as I get older. I have learned some valuable lessons from my mil and from reading about all the mil's on this board.

What I have learned that will hopefully make my life better and me a better person:

** The most important thing I have learned is that I can't change other people. I can only change my reaction to them. Most people don't change

I have learned to detach from hateful people and situations.

Playing favorites is never a good thing for anyone not even the favorite one.

Open family vs. Closed family- When someone in my family thinks enough of someone else to marry them or introduce them to the family I will treat them like family. No family is so much better that others can't enter it. All people are treated equally, blood related or not.

Everyone has been give a life to do with it as they choose. It's none of my business what someone else does or how they live. Live and let live. My way is not always the best way.

Enmeshment- not good for a family, friends or a marriage.

Respect - whether I like someone or not I will always try to treat them with respect.

Gossip- What someone tells me I will keep to myself.

Don't marry a momma's boy.

Religion- just because a it's a pray wrapped in bigotry ... it's still bigotry and the prayer has nothing to do with it. Your actions make you a Christian. If you have bad behavior your are STILL a bad person whether you pray about it or not...especially when there is no change.

Be direct- Passive aggressive behavior destroys relationships. Smiling through anger and then blowing up later is poor personal behavior management. (then my mil turns around and blames me for not being forgiving for the 100th time)

Apologize- If what I say has hurt someone I will apologize. I will not blame shift and consider that some kind of an apology. Even if I don't feel I did anything wrong but someone is hurt by my actions I will apologize. An apology is uplifting. I will admit when I'm wrong.

I have learned a lot from my mil about who and what not to be...and from other mil's on this board.

What have you learned?