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Publishers WeeklyThough it's often said that you don't just marry a person, you marry their family too, these complex relationships are often reduced to mother-in-law jokes and cruel stereotypes. Apter, a writer, psychologist and Cambridge University fellow, explores the mysteries and conflicts that come with the in-laws, including mother, father, sister and brother. Offering compelling insights into the power these relationships over a marriage, and the well being of both partners, Apter bases her report on interviews with 150 volunteers, in both the U.K. and the U.S. With professional grace, Apter exposes the emotional minefields that couples often navigate around in-laws, and the ease with which they become stuck in negative (and familiar) attitudes toward them. Apter moves beyond convenient labels, for example readdressing the idea of a mama's boy and what he can mean for a new wife, and convincingly demonstrating why women bear the brunt of the tension from both sides of the family. Self-help-standard questionnaires, exercises and coping methods-mostly practical-are also included in each chapter, giving readers knowledge and skills to relate more openly with the loved one's less-than-loveable family.
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