Stance: Studies on the Family

Brigham Young University Student Journal

Tag: siblings

Wedding Wednesday: Meeting The In-Laws

In exactly a month and sixteen days my fiancée and I will be walking through the doors of the Salt Lake Temple together. I am so excited and can’t believe how fast time is flying by, although it still isn’t coming soon enough! Nothing major has happened recently, I am still working on the little things for the wedding.

My fiancée’s parents came up from Arizona to meet my parents on the 25th of October, which was very exciting. Both my fiancée and I had already met the other’s parents, they just hadn’t met each other yet. Overall I would say it was a very successful visit. Meeting the in-laws is a big part of the wedding process that sometimes gets overlooked. It can be a little nerve-racking, but if you try to keep in mind these three tips, your initial first meeting should go a whole lot smoother.wedding family

#1 Be Yourself

I might sound like a broken record, but being yourself is incredibly important. You will most likely be interacting with your in-laws for the rest of your married life so it’s essential that they get to know YOU. Don’t try and change yourself in order to meet what you think their expectations are. It’s easy to tell when someone is trying to be fake, so don’t fake it. If you act like yourself then the people around you will act normal too, dissolving tension from a potentially stressful situation. Don’t be nervous, you know you better than anyone.

#2 Get to Know Them

Not only should they be getting to know you, but you should also get to know them. Don’t spend the whole time talking about your life—ask about theirs. Take real interest in their lives and passions; don’t feign interest. The more genuine you can be in this first meeting the better. Don’t just take interest in your mother or father-in-law; take interest in your fiancée’s siblings as well. Think of your in-laws as an addition to your family. Be kind and considerate, and treat them as you would treat your own family.

#3 Proper Setting The first time I met my fiancée’s parents was at his family’s condo in Cedar City. There were a lot of people there and we went snowboarding and played pool all day. He met my family at a birthday party for my cousin, where there were also a lot of people there talking and having fun. It is important that when you meet your in-laws for the first time that it is in the right setting, preferably, where not all the attention is on you. There are better times for you to interact one-on-one with your in-laws but for the first meeting that might be awkward. It’s best if it’s at a casual setting, with lots of people around and something going on. This way not all the pressure is on you and hopefully some of the awkwardness of that initial meeting will be diminished.

It’s always important to leave a good first impression. While that is true, don’t stress about meeting your in-laws, most likely they will love you just as much their son or daughter loves you.

By Bryn Adams

Camp To Belong

by Emily Smith

I couldn’t imagine a life without my siblings. Although they weren’t my best friends from my early stages of life, I have come to love and appreciate them for the people they are. Unfortunately, there are children who grow up without sibling support in foster homes across the United States. Lynn Price, a former foster child, has changed this for many children. In a New York Times article she stated, “I realized that my sister and I had no memories of when we were kids. There were no memories of birthday parties, sharing clothes, helping each other with homework, or talking about boys. I thought about the kids who will miss out on something that is so critical to their growth and feelings of unconditional love.”

Reading her account moved me to understand why she took action. My sister and I shared closets, stealing each other’s clothes; this often resulted in yelling at each other when we got home from school and had realized that one of us had taken the other’s favorite shirt and unwittingly spilled something on it. These confrontations were all part of the bonding experience; although we hated each other sometimes, we could not stop loving each other. The experience of growing up together usually ensures a lifelong connection of friendship between siblings.

To help establish that connection between siblings who aren’t able grow up together, Price founded “Camp To Belong” in 1995, which reunites siblings who have been separated in foster care. Statistics show that 75 percent of children placed in foster care are separated from their siblings. “Camp To Belong” is described as “an international non-profit organization dedicated to reuniting siblings placed in separate foster homes and other out-of-home care for events of fun, emotional empowerment and sibling connection.” There are currently nine of these camps that reunite foster siblings. During this week, siblings are able to get to know each other; they make crafts and are given gift cards to buy each other birthday presents. They also ask each other questions about favorite sports and hobbies.

Many of us are lucky enough that we don’t have to ask those questions. We are able to grow up with our siblings in the same household with our parents. For those who aren’t as fortunate, Lynn Price has created an amazing organization to benefit the relationships of siblings. Too often I take my siblings for granted; reading about “Camp to Belong” gave me perspective and a deeper gratitude for the experiences I shared with my siblings.

You can read Lynn Price’s autobiography here: http://www.lynnprice.com/biography.html

Or visit Camp to Belong’s official website: http://camptobelong.org/