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Her husband, Cristina's father, died when Cristina was still young, leaving her a widow to raise their daughter. They had a family house in San Miguel de Allende, but they also lived at the Institute, which was run by her brother, Tomas.
In December 2007, when the Clave called for Shadowhunters around the world to evacuate the Institutes and retreat to Alicante in light of Sebastian Morgenstern's attacks, Tomas was convinced that Idris would not be safe and insisted that she and Cristina stay in hiding in their house. Tomas himself went, however, and participated in the war. Tomas died during the war, and she replaced him as the head of the Institute.