Should She Forgive Her Mother-in-Law Who Chose Her Abusive Second Husband Over Her Son?

Should She Forgive Her Mother-in-Law Who Chose Her Abusive Second Husband Over Her Son?

"More than 15 million children in the United States live in homes in which domestic violence has happened at least once. These children are at greater risk for repeating the cycle as adults by entering into abusive relationships or becoming abusers themselves . . . Children who witness or are victims of emotional, physical, or sexual abuse are at higher risk for health problems as adults. These can include mental health conditions, such as depression and anxiety. They may also include diabetes, obesity, heart disease, poor self-esteem, and other problems," according to the website of the Office of Women's Health under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Marrying an individual who was abused as a child can be very challenging. But love can lend the power that's needed to make the relationship last.

This woman might have been harsh with her mother-in-law, but you'll also admire her depth of commitment to her husband, who's still hounded by the ghost of his childhood.

Here is her story, as published on Reddit's r/AmItheA--hole forum with the username u/asdwrgaf: "My husband and I've been married for 6 years, at least five of those have been almost no-contact with his mother. I don't know the whole story, but his dad passed away when he was young, and his mom remarried a man who was horribly abusive to him up until he moved out. He tried to tell his mother for years, but she just wouldn't believe it. It got to the point that, for his own wellbeing, he just couldn't be around her anymore."

Unexpectedly, after years of almost no communication, OP's mother-in-law appeared at their doorstep. The older woman said that she has been trying to contact them, but it seemed that the couple had blocked her phone number. And now she was crying because her second husband had destroyed her house and abandoned her.

She further told OP that she had come to realize that everything her abused son had told her was true. And now she wanted to talk to him because there was no one for her to turn to anymore.

But the older woman's tears didn't move OP. She continued to relate in her post, "I said that she had some f-cking balls coming to our house to cry after throwing her son to the side for a disgusting predator until that stopped working for her. I said she made her bed, now is the time to lie in it, and it wasn't going to be in my f-cking house."

Her MIL was in hysterics, but OP could not care less. She was more concerned about the effect of her MIL's sudden appearance on her husband. He started to experience panic attacks again, and depression has kept him in bed since that day.

Yet, OP admitted her in her post that there were times her conscience felt heavy when she would recall the incident. She's been wondering if she has turned the situation worse. Should she have dealt with it differently?

But, despite OP's turning her MIL away in a harsh manner, the members of the AITA community agreed that she must do everything to protect her husband and not to worry about his mother. Based on her husband's reaction, the effect of the abuses he had suffered at the hands of his immoral stepdad was still very much ingrained in his mind and heart. His wife must steer away everyone who reminds her husband of his horrible past.

These are some of the best comments from the AITA community:

From Majestic-Leopard-563: "NTA. She needed to be told! Didn’t care when it was happening to her son, but oh, it’s the end of the world when it happened to her! Good for you!! Hold your head up high and keep looking after your husband."

From Gypsyheartwanderer: "NTA. OP defended her home and her husband from someone who caused husband incredible trauma. WELL DONE!! If husband had wanted to talk, that would be slightly different. However, by husband’s reaction, OP did exactly the right thing. MIL should get back on her broom and ride off into the sunset."

From Kynykya4211: "As a therapist, this is something I see repeatedly. Children get their sense of self-worth and validation from their parents, and many times when they are abused, they internalize the abuse and blame themselves. It can take a tremendous amount of work to overcome that thought process."

Doris de Luna

For more than 20 years now, I’ve been devoting my heart, energy, and time to fulfilling my dream, which – many people may agree – is not among the easiest aspirations in life. Part of my happiness is having been able to lend a hand to many individuals, companies, and even governments as an investigative journalist, creative writer, TV director, and radio broadcaster.

At home, I spend my free time learning how to cook various cuisines. Tiramisu, chocolate mousse, and banoffee pie are my favorite desserts. Playing with our dogs, Mushu and Jerusalem, is also a special part of my day. And, of course, I read a lot – almost anything under the sun. But what really makes me feel alive is meeting people from various walks of life and writing about their stories, which echo with the tears and triumph of an unyielding spirit, humanity, and wisdom.

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