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Dear mother-in-law

11:28 UK time, Friday, 12 November 2010

Gordon Ramsay took tensions with the in-laws to a whole new level this week by writing an open letter - published in a newspaper - to his mother-in-law, the latest move in a very public spat with them.

Ramsay has issues with the in-laws

In it he implored his mother-in-law, Greta Hutcheson not to sever all links with his family. Relationships have been strained since he sacked Greta's husband, that is father-in-law Chris Hutcheson, as chief executive of Gordon Ramsay Holdings.

But could the fearsome chef be on to something? Could an open letter be the ideal way to communicate a few home truths to one's mother-in-law? We asked you to compose your own letter to your spouse's mum. Here are some of them.

Dear Edith,
With the utmost respect, when I am at the top of a ladder on a Sunday morning, painting your first-floor windows, could you please refrain from standing at the bottom and telling me what I should and shouldn't be doing.
Your beloved son-in-law

Dear mother-in-law,
I promise to try to listen more attentively when you call me during the day. I promise to take more of an active interest in the goings on in the life of cousin Betty's brother-in-law's uncle's third cousin once removed. I promise to remember the minute details of where members of your family are going to be on any given day, 10 months hence, including who they are going with and the name of that person's dog. After all, you are truly a kind and thoughtful mother-in-law, and I am genuinely lucky to have you. You make allowances for my casual approach to dusting and other household chores, and you greet me as warmly as any of your children whenever we meet.
All things considered, ours is a good relationship.

Dear mother-in-law
Sorry, but I won't be buying you a present this year. I bought you something really expensive last year, which I could ill afford, and you snubbed me. Obviously you didn't want to even use it. You must realise in this time of recession that burial plots don't come cheap.
Your loving son-in-law,

Les Dawson was not a fan of mother-in-laws

Dear mother-in-law,
The least you could do is remember your eldest son's birthday and send a card, even if you can't remember mine or our son's birthdays. I shouldn't have to remind you. I've known your son for three years, you've known him for 41 years.

Dear mother-in-law,
It has been pointed out to me that mother-in-law is an anagram for Hitler woman,

Dear W,
Thank you for the advice you gave me on a successful relationship or at least that is what I think you were trying to convey when you said: "Shut up you, you aren't married to him yet." I will try to bear this in mind though with the upmost respect after living as a couple for seven years we feel quite solid on our own feet.
With Love,
Your darling daughter-in-law
(Well, not yet as you so kindly pointed out)

Dear mother-in-law,
I think that you need a good meal. It isn't healthy in my opinion to be watching your weight in your 70s or to be, at any stage of your life, a size six. However, I appreciate that as a size 12 -14, I'm a little bigger than you. Still that doesn't make me overweight, fat, or in need of any form of slimming down. I eat well, and I exercise lots. As such, please stop telling me, whenever we are eating or soon after, any of the following (or variations thereof):
- Gosh you have a good appetite
- You're eating that with gusto
- You're nearly done, and I've only just started - you must be starving
- Is your skirt/dress tight today
- I assume you'll be wanting seconds
Lots of love,

Dear Elma,
Just wanted to say (given this opportunity) that I really appreciate all you do, thoroughly enjoy your company, love that you have welcomed Rhiannon and I into your family so openly and miss you when you're not there.

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