Brother/Sister-in-law

France, French
I wanted to know what are the parents of the Bride and the Groom to each other ????What is the name of their kinship relation???The mother of the bride is the of the father of the groom... etc...Are they Brother / Sister-in-law??????Sorry to ask such a dumb question....
 
  • France, French
    There is no "relationship" between the respective parents of the bride and groom. There is no name given to that relationship in the English language.
    I beg to differ, there is a relationship between the respective parents of the bride and groom, they will be grandparents of the same children...;)

    Are you sure there is no name given to their relationship in English????????
    Does anyone know if there never ever was a name to that relationship, not even in old English????

    It is amazing, i am trying to translate the Urdu word samadhî (masculine), samadhan (feminine) and you are telling me that there is no word for that in English?????? :(

    Ooops, what should I do???
     

    panjandrum

    Occasional Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    I'm not aware of any term that that could be formally used for my relationship with my children's parents-in-law.
    In one instance - the pair we see most often - we refer to each other occasionally as "the in-laws", but I must emphasise that this is an informal and light-hearted term of convenience (we think).
     

    Dimcl

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    I beg to differ, there is a relationship between the respective parents of the bride and groom, they will be grandparents of the same children...;)

    Are you sure there is no name given to their relationship in English????????
    Does anyone know if there never ever was a name to that relationship, not even in old English????

    It is amazing, i am trying to translate the Urdu word samadhî (masculine), samadhan (feminine) and you are telling me that there is no word for that in English?????? :(

    Ooops, what should I do???
    It may be a cultural difference, Francois, but it doesn't make sense to have "names" for the relationship of people who are only peripherally connected because their respective children married. The "names" of "in-laws" are all connected to the married couple ie: The bride's sisters and brothers are the sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law of the groom and vice versa. The parents of the bride are the groom's mother-in-law and father-in-law and vice versa. There is no relationship connecting the parents of the couple and, hence, no name.

    Edit: And notwithstanding your rationale that they will both be the grandparents of any children, why then should we stop with the parents of the married couple because the parents of the parents of the married couple would also be connected, would they not? Only, in that case, there would be 4 sets of great-grandparents of any children and on and on and on.....
     

    ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    My two grandmothers (both born in the first decade of the last century) always addressed one another as Mrs.P____ and Mrs.M____ ~ on the one or occasionally two times a year they met.

    It would not surprise me (much) to learn that in the Anglo-Saxon period, when the principle of Marry Whoever's Nearest And Isn't Already Married applied, there was a name for this relationship ~ though I suspect the people involved might simply have addressed each other as Neighbour.

    English has long struck me as somewhat deficient in kinship terms (by contrast see the Serbian terms ~ post #9 in this thread http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=703851) ~ not sure of a reason for this. But I would say that as populations become ever more mobile, there is ever the less need for terms of such tangential kinship. By way of example: my parents and my parents-in-law have never met, despite me and my partner having been together for 5 years: they live 200 miles apart and will, quite possibly, never meet.

    It seems to me more a question of need than of sense.
     

    Lexiphile

    Senior Member
    England English
    It seems to me more a question of need than of sense.
    And there certainly is no need, since it's quite easy to circumscribe this and any other, equally tangential relationship. Take it as read: English has no name for this relationship.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    As others have said, there are several relationship words that are missing in English compared to other languages. I was surprised to learn that Spanish has a single word for the spouse of your spouse's brother or sister. We would have to say, "my brother-in-law's wife" or "my sister-in-law's husband." There is no single word for that in English. There is also no single word for the relationship of parents to parent-in-law. It's clear that you find it hard to believe, but it's true.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    On the subject of "in-laws" and "grandparents", in many states (New York is one) "in-laws" are forever. That is, the relationship of "in-law" does not dissolve with any dissolution of the marriage, either by death or divorce.

    Also, there is no avuncular tie between uncles on either side of the family.

    That is I am uncle to my niece, and my sister-in-law's brother is also an uncle to my niece, but we are not in anyway related nor is there a term for our ties.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    On the subject of "in-laws" and "grandparents", in many states (New York is one) "in-laws" are forever. That is, the relationship of "in-law" does not dissolve with any dissolution of the marriage, either by death or divorce.
    Other than in the case of grandparents to a grandchild, when would this relationship be significant, Packard? In other words, unless there are grandchildren, there is no legal significance to this relationship, is there?
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    Other than in the case of grandparents to a grandchild, when would this relationship be significant, Packard? In other words, unless there are grandchildren, there is no legal significance to this relationship, is there?
    Yes, it is about a Grandchild to a Grandparent, and mostly has to do with child custody, but can also have to do with inheritance.

    1. Say you marry, have a child and divorce.
    2. You die.
    3. Your ex-wife re-marries.
    4. Your ex-wife divorces and then dies.

    Who gets custody of the grandchild? The original in-laws do (at least in N.Y.).

    In New York if you marry five times you have five sets of in-laws for all eternity. (One of many reasons not to marry.)
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    I'm trying not to get too far off-topic (and probably have already failed miserably), but the issue is important because I think this relationship is recognized as a blood relation. I don't think we see a binding relationship between the parents-in-law in our culture so the lack of a word for that relationship doesn't seem odd.

    I don't think, for example, that if a son died and his wife became disabled that we would hold her parents-in-law responsible for her care, especially not in court, although many would step in and take responsibility for her on their own.

    I imagine that the lack of a word is a reflection of cultural expectations, as others have said.
     

    wildan1

    Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)
    I wanted to know what are the parents of the Bride and the Groom to each other ????What is the name of their kinship relation???The mother of the bride is the of the father of the groom... etc...Are they Brother / Sister-in-law??????Sorry to ask such a dumb question....
    I would call my daughter's in-laws just that--my daughter's in-laws, or alternatively, my son-in-law's parents. A newspaper report on a wedding might describe the parents of the bride and groom, but that is describing a wedding more than day-to-day reference in conversation.

    I concur with others that North American English doesn't have special names for this relationship between the couple's birth parents.

    If you are living in South Asia where local languages make such a difference, I would wonder if maybe they insert into English discourse the Urdu or other language terms to make that distinction. I think if your translation is a formal one for non-Urdu speakers, you would explain the term in parens or with a footnote the first time, and then just use those Urdu terms.
     
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