My MIL is great because:
- she lets me vent: the other day I went on for ages about how things were tough for me job wise and how hard things are at the moment and she just listened and offered the odd words here and there.
- she respects that her son and I are both adults: I mentioned that I asked DH to go on permanent night shift for a while because money was getting too tight for comfort and though I could tell she didn't really like the idea she didn't say a bad word. Then when I told her he didn't need to any more because I have a job she mentioned that she hadn't liked the idea. I loved her more then because she just bit her tongue for a while but was so polite about it when she did voice her real thoughts.
- she likes me but doesn't try to smother me: My MIL and I go out for shopping trips and lunch on occasion, just us girls. My IL's also get me and DH over for dinner about once a fortnight and sometimes we go out for special dinners too. However, they don't just drop in on us and don't call every single day. We usually get a catch up phone call once a week or so or we call them to see how they're going.
- she doesn't put any pressure on us: My MIL just got the blessing of a grandson last year, but downside is he is on the other side of the country. She is flying over to see him every few months but I know she is hoping that we have a child soon. However, she never pressures us or asks when we are going to have kids. She knows it will happen soon even if it is not as soon as she would like.
My MIL has also offered to look after LO when I want to go back to work after maternity leave. I think this is fantastic in theory as we won't have childcare costs, but I also think that she hasn't thought through the reality. I work in the opposite direction to where she lives so she would have to come to our place (an issue seeing as she doesn't like to drive much let alone across the city), she won't be able to take her holidays during school terms or we will be left without care options unless we are notified in advance so DH can take leave, and she would need to follow what I ask of her, which I am not 100% sure she would do, eg no sugar (her sons are all sugar addicts), set rest times, etc. She does do a little bit of the "in my day" stuff but I just smile and take it with a grain of salt.
Given all the posts I have read so far though it sounds like the ingredients for a great MIL are the same and I am lucky to have one too.