Do You Remember That Time You Finally Told Your Ex Mother-In-Law Everything You Have Ever Wanted To Say About Her? I Do. Because It Was Today.
So it finally happened people. Now let me tell you, it was a looooonnnnggggg time coming. I have politely kept my mouth shut, nodded and smiled for the last 12 years. Today though, today I exploded. Now give me some credit that I didn’t yell, I’m not really a yeller, but holy hell, the pure venomous vomit that spewed from my mouth towards her may have burned her face off. Yikes.
Allow me fill you in. My ex, whom I will lovingly refer to as “the spawn of satan,” was a horribly abusive guy. His mother, whom I will loving refer to as “the total whack job,” is crazy. I feel qualified to diagnose her as that based on her long history of crazy shit. I will privy you to three different examples of her craziness so that you can get the picture.
Example #1. She once called me, all excited, because there was a minor fender bender outside of her house, and she was sitting in a lawn chair, IN THE STREET, eating cookies, so that she could get a better view.
Example #2. One time we were going to a pumpkin farm and you had to cross the one lane dirt road from the grassy parking lot to the actual farm. She was afraid that someone might come flying down the road (I mean hello, you could only see 30 miles down the road in both directions, so you just never know when a car might be coming at 450mph and just run you right over), so she called the police and asked them to escort her because there was no cross walk.
Example #3. Once a month she sends me a box of crap. I feel qualified to call it a box of crap, based on the fact that it is, in fact, a box of crap. My last box contained 30 boxes of clearance valentines cards, 4 economy sized boxes of expired fruit snacks, an egg white separator, jello jiggler cookie cutters from the year they were invented, a 15 pack of scissors, cat food (I don’t have a cat), KY warming jelly, and a pair of her old pants with a note that explained they were incase I gained 60lbs. I seriously could not make this shit up.
So I’m calling it like I see it, the lady is a whack job.
Anyways. So the whack job and I have always had a strained relationship. Never any harsh words, I’ve just never liked her, and because I am used to letting people walk all over me, I never did anything about it. She, in turn, blamed me for everything. I will now illustrate this point with three more examples.
#1. The spawn of satan failed his life insurance test because drugs showed up in his system. I called the whack job and told her that the spawn of satan was in trouble and needed help, and she told me that I should be feeding him more. She then started bringing frozen meals over to my house with little notes that said things such as “Mommy will take care of you since your wife can’t.”
#2 The spawn of satan lost like 80lbs and his teeth fell out. I once again called the whack job and begged for her help. She told me that she had seen him and was really worried about him as well and that maybe if I dressed him more appropriately for work and had a better dinner on the table when he came home, that he wouldn’t look so homely and wouldn’t be so stressed. She then started calling me every night with a weather update and would tell me what to dress her little spawn of satan in the next day.
#3. I realized the spawn of satan was cheating on me, was definitely on drugs, had stolen $23,000 from his company, that he had hit our son, and that I needed help. (I did not tell her that he was hitting/raping me) The whack job started crying and told me that I had failed him as a wife.
You guys, I am so stupid. I TOTALLY BELIEVED HER. The more I talked to her, the harder I tried. I wasn’t just making dinner, I was packing him lunches and sending him off with a hot breakfast. I was putting extra changes of clothes in his truck. When he got home from work I was setting everything he needed out in the bathroom so he could take a shower and the entire time he was using me like a punching bag. The harder he hit, the harder I tried the next day.
Now for those of you whom have not read my back story, my ex husband literally just disappeared one day. Didn’t come home, drained the bank account, left his work vehicle and phone at his job (which he never returned to), took a cab to his parents where he stole several hundred dollars and their car, never came back for any belongings, and with the exception of a few phone calls I received, no one ever heard from him again. I now know he is living a few towns over dealing drugs and living with his girlfriend.
So here we are a few months shy of two years later and I have learned quite a bit about myself. I realize now, that the way I grew up, being told that I was worth absolutely nothing, allowed other people to do the same thing. When you grow up you realize which people are dangerous and which people you should not have in your life. You learn which people to avoid and you learn how to set healthy boundaries. I never learned that, so when other people see danger in someone, I let them in, let them set up camp, and let them walk all over me, because to me, its familiar territory. I was never equipped with the correct tools to read other people’s behavior and filter out what is and is not appropriate. I believe everything people tell me and to this day I still struggle with that. In my mind, its never been anyone else’s fault but mine. Until now. I’ve recently come to realize that I need to let some of these people go. By nature, I like nearly everyone. I see the good in people, and I tend to ignore the bad. While that sounds all fine and dandy, it’s downright dangerous. I ran from an abusive childhood into the arms of an abusive man, raised by an off kilter mother. Directly from my marriage I ran into the arms of another person who was only out to take advantage of me, and I became best friends with an abuser next door. What the heck is wrong with me? I don’t just make a mistake once. I make it a few times juuuuust to make sure. (Slaps forehead). I have unconsciously been seeking out people with abusive personality traits because it is what I understand, it’s familiar to me, and it needs to stop.
So here I am, thirty years old and I’m finally setting some healthy boundaries for myself, which is great, but it also poses a problem. How do you do that with people who are already well established in your life and are already so very far over your boundary lines?
Well…. Sometimes it plays out a little like this.
Whack job calls me, I answer.
Her: Hi. It’s me.
Her: As you have noticed, I haven’t been calling you lately.
Me: Yes, I’ve noticed.
Her: Aren’t you going to ask why?
Me: Ok, why haven’t you been calling me lately?
Her: Because, I have just come to realize lately how angry I am at you. I don’t get to see my son anymore. It was his birthday last month, and you didn’t even call me on his birthday.
Me: Well, I thought about him on his birthday, and quite honestly, I wasn’t sure how to handle that. I didn’t want to upset you.
Her: Well you did. I’ve been trying for a year now to act like everything is ok between us, but I just have to tell you that it’s not. I am so angry at you.
(Now let me interject for just a minute here to let you all know she tells me EVERY TIME we talk how this is all my fault, but I don’t argue with her because you really only defend yourself to the people who’s opinions you value. Hers is not one of them. Plus, its kind of hard to argue with crazy.)
Her Still: If you had taken better care of him, I would still have my son. He had to leave and find someone else because you couldn’t give him what he needed. I am so angry with you!!!! (Now she is yelling.)
Now I start out being nice, but somewhere along the line I realize how angry I am and all hell breaks loose in a vomit of overly harsh words.
Me: I’m sorry that you are hurt, I know that you miss him, and I know that it is hard for you. But quite frankly, I’m angry with you too. I’m tired of being blamed for the choices that he made. He is a grown man, capable of making his own choices, and he made them. If I was so horrible, he was free to leave me, but he didn’t. He left all of us. He left me, and his kids, and he left you. Now as much as I’d like to blame you for all of his problems, I am fully aware that kids make choices that don’t necessarily reflect the things that we have taught them. But I am also aware of the fact that you seem to be living in denial land over there. If I didn’t take good care of him, why didn’t he just run back to you? Have you heard from him? No. Because he doesn’t give a shit about me, he doesn’t give a shit about his kids, and he doesn’t give a shit about you! You know what every marriage counselor we ever saw said to us? That he has no sense of responsibility. That he thinks every bad choice that he makes is because of someone else. That he believes nothing is his fault, and that nothing is ever wrong because of him and look how that turned out!? He threw us all away like garbage and feels no sense of responsibility to any of us. For that, I blame you! This is your fault! You are constantly telling me why everything is not his fault, why he did nothing wrong, why he is perfect. How well did that turn out for you? It was your job as his mother to prepare him to be an adult and you failed. You gave him to me all broken and incomplete and then you expected me to fix him. Well I couldn’t! That wasn’t supposed to be my job. So you want to talk about being angry? I’m downright livid with you! He has destroyed the lives of three people over here and I blame you! Every day I wake up and I know that that my life and the lives of my kids will forever be made harder because of the choices that he made, so if you want to blame someone for the choices that he made, blame yourself! It was your job to grow him into a man and yet he acts like a child. I don’t take this shit from my parents anymore and I’m certainly not going to take it from you.
And with that, I hung up.
Yikes. I’m a terrible person.
Please see also: Watch out people, I’m cleaning house over here and I’ll be happy to sweep your ass right out.
Again, I’m probably going to hell. Send me a postcard.
Photo credit hell: http://www.flickr.com/photos/eoinmcnamee/
Photo credit punching bag: http://www.flickr.com/photos/90982314@N00/
Photo credit crazy driving frog: http://www.flickr.com/photos/moffoys/
You said what you needed to say…have no regrets! Sometimes you have to speak the truth and stand up for yourself…maybe she will go away!
So far she has gone away! And I’m not gonna lie…its been kind of AH MAY ZING!!!
Way to go – said what needed to be said…..and with gusto!!
Haha, thanks! I definitely wish that I had been a bit nicer, but…..oh well!
This one is my favorite, my absolute favorite. I can't believe how funny you are! I am actually wiping tears away I'm laughing so hard. That woman is CRAZY!!
You said, ” I definitely wish that I had been a bit nicer, but…..oh well!”She deserves a lot worse. You are a gem.
Haha, thanks! Too funny 🙂
Ah, your comment was a breath of fresh air lol. My last article had an overwhelmingly great response, but then this morning there were a few doubters who had left a couple scathing messages. Its so hard when you finally decide to break the silence, and you are so viciously reminded why you kept quiet for so many years in the first place.
Thank you for your kind words, they brought a much needed smile to my heart this afternoon.
I hope to see you around here again.
Thank you for being my smile today!
Girl – well done you for standing up for yourself – pls keep it up! You were in no way nasty but in fact extremely factual, clear and polite considering which is what you need when protecting yourself xoxo
That makes me feel better lol. Thank you!
All I can say is, you go girl! I think you were plenty nice. You told that horrible woman just what she needed to hear. I think you are amazing!
I’ll take “amazing!” Lol! You rock, thank you!!
Uhhh, you are 100% not a terrible person. You didn't say one darn thing that wasn't true, and I bet she's still trying to pick her jaw up off the floor!!
I’m pretty sure I heard it hit the floor while we were on the phone. I was literally waiting for the phone to combust into flames!
Hell Yah! You are awesome! You are NOT a terrible person!
Haha, thanks! 😉
i followed you here from the article over at. um. i cannot recollect, as it is a site i have never visited before today. i wandered around the site for a bit, and then i read your story.oh, dear woman… how i can empathize with you. this world and it's craziness, its cruelty, its inconsideration, oh-so-often it seems something to be escaped. something almost insurmountable.i just wanted to say thank you. thank you for putting it out there. thank you for letting us, the readers, feel as though we are friends that might support you, listen to you, commiserate with you.you are so, so much wiser than you might see; celebrate that shit!be well:)
Good for you. Your MIL had that coming for YEARS. I hope you felt like you had a ton of bricks lifted from your shoulders. She earned every one of those words – you were exactly right. Like mother, like son. She couldn't yell at him, so she was yelling at you – I'm so glad you gave it right back to her! You're my new hero!
I felt terrible lol. I really didn’t want to hurt her, it wasn’t my intention, I wish I had been a bit nicer, and I certainly wish I hadn’t yelled at her like a total psycho, but I have not heard from her since and that feels AWESOME!!!!!!!!!! 😀
Did you know if you rearrange the letters in mother in law you can spell woman Hitler? It seems fitting here.
Hahahahahaha!!! Oh my gosh, I love it
HELL YEAHYou don't take shit from anybody. I'm actually really curious as how you ended up such a good person. Why are you so nice when all you ever knew was cruelty? I know a lot of abused people have their own kids, and even though they're trying not to become them, have caught themselves doing something their abusive parents would do. Have you ever had that happen to you?Also, I don't know if you connect with these kinds of things or not, but your experiences remind me of this girl from this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B1iUog2lL8kShe was a beauty guru on YouTube that I was following, when all of a sudden one day this video pops up on my subscriptions. I was floored. Who would have ANY idea that this beautiful, blonde, energetic, intelligent beauty guru, someone I had been casually following for beauty tips, went through this? I feel like nobody would have ANY idea what happened to you, either. I know this comment has a lot of content to take in, so I apologize. I just have a lot to say to you, and I quite wish we could have a real conversation. You are such a good force in the world, and you are an amazing mother. I am crying, thinking of how wonderful you are for breaking that cycle of abuse. Your children will never have to experience what you have.
Ok, Lets see if I can cover all of this.
How did I become such a good person? Well, I can’t say for sure that I am a good person, but I try. I don’t know to be honest. All I know is that when I see people, I really feel what they are feeling. If they are hurting or sad, I KNOW what that feels like, and I don’t want to make anyone feel like that. I just want everyone to be happy and feel loved.
Have I caught myself doing something to my kids that my mother had done to me? No, I’m really a fairly calm person. One day my daughter was on the war path of terror, and so I put her in her room for time out. She is usually such a gentle kid but she went totally ballistic, throwing her things all over the place, so at my complete wits end, I hauled everything out of her room and left her sitting on the bed. When she started jumping on the bed, I hauled her mattress out as well. As I sat in my room amidst everything she owned, I did wonder if I was starting to go crazy…. When she calmed down we had a gentle talk about making good choices and respecting belongings, and she had to put her own room back together. I think that might have been my craziest moment though. It doesn’t usually get to uptight around here. Usually when I discipline them I remind them “I love you very much, but I am not happy with the choices that you are making.” I think its important they understand how to separate the feelings I have towards the actions they are taking vs my feelings towards them.
I will definitely check out the video!
That conversation was probably not fun to have per se…but holy hell, I was almost laughing out loud and cheering in this library. Well done, madam. Well done. Also: FREEDOM!
Haha! Thanks 🙂
You wish you had been nicer?! Damn, ma'am, if that were me, I would have never been able to hold it in as long as you did! You go, girl!
That is too funny!
Thank you for caring about me 🙂 I appreciate you!!! You are the best!! Sending you a hug
Hello eden strong,I thought i could share some info with you, which i wish you may know and may get some understanding….Syndromes experienced by being oppressed…http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deferencehttp://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stockholm_syndromeAfter reading some posts, i thought it would be better for you, if you know something from these links…just leave a comment here and let me knowwhether it provided any insight for you….question for you1) i think you are kind of introvert, is it right, just curious is it right??
Hi! I have heard of those syndrome’s before. Thank you for posting those links! I’ve often felt a bit stockholmish, I don’t know if it would be considered technical stockholm syndrome, but I agree that it probably falls in the grey area’s.
I’m sort of a weir introvert. My main personality is actually an extreme extrovert. I’m loud, not shy at all, and I love people. But I have a lot of secrets that I hide, so I definitely have an introverted side to me
*weird introvert* Not wier
Ok nice to know….it has provided some insight for you…and thanks for letting me know…because if you would convey something for the person who is caring about you and thinking about you…it would make them feel nice…srinivas, india
Hello there eden, few questions from a curious visitor of your blog…1) i hav seen injuries on your FACE, arms, feet XRAY etc and surgeries that are happening for you now…who caused all those injuries, is it from single person abuse or from different person like your ex, abuser…etc may i know about it..2) is ur childhood happy, or you got abused by ur close ones, like best friends…3) you know about BDSM, i see you had experienced, not wholly but some sort of, do you think if bdsm happened to you..4) i thought, u would continue ur relation with dweeb one, very curious why u arrent continuing with him, although u hadnt specified in ur blog postArticle ideas and also questions:: 1)u had been abused in very bad way, but that could have been avoided, if you know SELF DEFENCE TACTICS (like solar plexus punch, which make attacker lie 20 sec on floor, gasping for breath), why iam saying this is after u got seperated u are alone and could hav thought about this, its not too late, i think u should learn something so u could bravely defend now…..any ways now you can try to write a SELF DEFENCE articlepost here, after learning them, it would be great for women…2) youu hav written many posts, regarding saddest parts of ur life, why dont u write a article, about ur future, regarding how ur partner should be, and how he must share ur feelings, burden, and give value for ur opinion, thoughts….all sorts of postive aspects and must have traits for ur partner….bcz it would a insight into a woman's heart, and sort of guide, for me people, who are willing to make their life partners, happy giving value for them, ……i hope u reply this…..srinivas, india
1. Face and foot were sugeries
2. No, my childhood was not happy
3. Never done BDSM
4. Dweeb face wanted to be my boyfriend and I wasn’t ready for that
As far as the self defense goes, I don’t typically encourage abused women to physically fight back because in all liklihood it will further enrage the abuser who could overpower them
youu hav written many posts, regarding saddest parts of ur life, why dont u write a article, about ur future, regarding how ur partner should be, and how he must share ur feelings, burden, and give value for ur opinion, thoughts….all sorts of postive aspects and must have traits for ur partner….bcz it would a insight into a woman's heart, and sort of guide, for people, who are willing to make their life partners, happy giving value for them, ……i hope u reply this…..
I’m not sure I know what I want yet, or even what I need yet. Still getting there.
Dont backbite others…a sin as revealed in final book of revelation from one and only god
Thank you Dew 🙂
Unreal. Kindly keep your unconstructive and manipulative comments to yourself, “Anonymous.”
Thanks for sharing your experiences, and thanks for being funny. I think you are great.
Thank you for reading!!
I love this, especially because my 1st husband's mother used to say (for the entire time we were married) “she's not one of us” whether I was within earshot or not. One day, when I did happen to hear that issue forth from her mouth to the roomful of people that included my husband (who did not ever have my back to his mother), I said “and I don't want to be one of you either. All of you can go to hell.” and on that note, I turned and walked out the door to go to work. They were all sitting there with shocked faces, jaws hanging open. No one said a word. Never had another visit from them after that and we divorced two years later.
Haha!!! Good for you standing up for yourself! **HIGH FIVE!!**
You rock girly 🙂
That was totally my thought too! I would have said things a little less eloquently with a lot more expletives, lol! I think you handled it & got your point across VERY WELL!
We have the exact same psychological profile. Narcissistic family to narc husband. 30 years for each. Now at 62, yes 62, I am turning it around. Had to get breast cancer and be horribly treated, plus get a therapist who could finally see what he was at 60 to begin to gain back myself. I don't care who old I am it is really fun! I have no contact with him or his family. He lives 2 hours away, they live in another state. But would love to write old mother in law and let her know how she helped degrade me over the years. Especially, she always wrote letters to both of us for 20 years, then she switched to just him because he was mad at me, that was about when I left. Didn't need 2 people ganging up to shame me. Want to write her about it, but she is 93. I know God is telling me to just let her die and reap her just rewards.
Age is just a number, good for you! You deserve to finally have them out of your life so that you can put YOU first!! Let the mother in law go, you know she has to be miserable. She stole enough of your time. Let her go and use all your energy on you. You deserve it!
Hahaha!! Awesome!! “Spawn of Satan” I mean how did you create that.. You ROCK yaar. I have had a good life, frankly speaking, I have only heard about the horror stories of sorts in US. Never thought I would read first hand account of it. Sitting in India, being a middle class citizen you don't get to see, read or hear such accounts first hand. And you my friend, are my hero.
You are too sweet 🙂