What my in-laws’ visit has taught us as a couple

By Nina Steele 

My sister-in-law and her husband came to stay with us this week, and we had the most wonderful time together. They are the proud parents of 3 teenage children and the fact that we as a couple do not have any children, has never impacted on our relationship.

What I admire most about my husband’s side of the family, is the support they have shown us since we made the decision to stop trying for a child and to not pursue the adoption route.

For one thing, it has become pretty obvious to everyone around us that as a couple, we are in a good place. I cannot imagine how it feels like to be constantly under pressure to conform to what others see as the norm, as summarised in this article.

My sister-in-law and her husband are what you would call a sophisticated couple. They understand the ways of the world through their many travels and their interest in current affairs. They are both generous in spirit and materialistically speaking. They always show great interest in what we do as a couple and have been supportive of whatever decisions we have made. We on the other hand always return the favour, not because we feel a certain obligation to do so, but because we genuinely like them.

One of the things I have learnt as I grow older, is that the happier you get, the easier it becomes to welcome others into your life, particularly people who you have a lot in common with. Relationships are never easy and I generally prefer to keep my distant from those who do not add value to my life, and my husband feels the same. I mean, what is the point?

By adding value, I mean helping you grow as a person. By spending time with my sister-in-law and her husband, we have realised that although we do live a good life, we have been too restrictive in terms of leisure activities. For example, as a couple, we enjoy walking in the countryside and have spent a great deal of time doing that in the past few years, at the expense of other leisure activities. Our guests on the other hand enjoy exploring urban areas and as a result of going around town with them, we have realised how interesting and uplifting these places can be. And so we have decided to do more of that!

Family matters (at least those that you get along with!), even though you may not see each other that often. To know that there are people out there who care and want the best for you is quite humbling.

Childless and happy

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