Indian families are designed to be your village. There's plenty of people around to help you with just about anything but you have to be careful how much and when you tell them information about your life.
I recently asked a group of pardesi's in the community how much they involved their in-laws and to what degree. The answer was refreshing. Those who could speak their spouses native language and had a positive relationship with their in-laws seemed to turn to their in-laws as needed.
I suppose I should clarify. In a typical American-American marriage you may go to your in-laws when there is trouble but there's no guarantee you would get help or even empathy, care or concern. Many don't want to be involved or will give you advice you don't want - like "leave the b*stard" or equally as unhelpful advice. Some families will be helpful but there is an overall perception that we're each responsible for ourselves and our families hold back based on the concept that we have to make our own decisions. This isn't necessarily wrong, just much different from the Indian stance seems to be.
So, back on topic, many pardesi's seem quite comfortable with going to their in-laws for help on small topics as well as big topics. They found it comforting to know that if they had trouble explaining a concept to their spouse, their in-laws could often help them explain it and resolve the communication barriers.
Others found a great sense of stress relief knowing that if their spouse was misbehaving on any level, they could contact their Indian family for help with mediation or to resolve the issues for them. Depending on the pardesi's fluency levels, they were comfortable discussing anything from daily life to major fights.
Of course, not all the hubbies were happy about this as I'm sure you could guess. I can only imagine most wouldn't want to admit to their parents their lives were less than perfect but in the end their parents seem to just understand that sometimes relationships have troubles and they need the help of the elders. Unlike some American parents, Indian parents aren't likely to actually disown their children - even if they threaten to.
Unfortunately I still have somewhat of a major language barrier with my MIL. I don't have the advantage of going directly to her for help though one time I did tell her that her son was "mujhe nahi" (no fun) and instead of laughing as usual she told me I better just love him because she had sent him to me. I think she was missing him too much that day.
When I have something I can't seem to communicate well, I go to BIL who speaks English. He's been a great help to me and hubby during his adjustment to life here in the US.
Have you ever had to ask your in-laws for help? Or have you thought about it but wasn't sure you could ask for help?
What did you ask for?
Do they help you resolve communication issues?