Posted in the Chicago Forum
“reign in blood”
Since: May 09
#1 Nov 3, 2012
DEAR AMY: My husband and I are heartsick over a request from our son to refrain from having any contact with him or our daughter-in-law. They have been married for five years, and we feel we have always been kind, generous and supportive of them.
One month ago, we learned from our son that our daughter-in-law has been keeping a "grievance journal" filled with many pages of "grievances" that have upset her, dating from several years before their marriage. Items on this list were fabrications, insinuations, suppositions and blatant falsehoods. For example, she, overhearing a conversation, supposed that we were talking about her when we were not. We also learned that she interpreted my "body language" as being negative toward her, but we have always liked her.
We had indications that all was not well in their relationship when we learned that our son was lying to us about why his wife would not come to visit us, but we tried to give them the benefit of the doubt. Now, my husband and I (and our other children) feel we have lost these family members. We will respect our son's request to stop all communication with them to avoid what he calls a "meltdown."
Our family is stunned, deeply hurt and trying very hard to maintain positive thoughts toward them. Help!-- Anguished Mother
DEAR ANGUISHED: This is alarming. According to your account, your daughter-in-law is isolating your son and denying him access to his support system. This is classic behavior of a domestic abuser.
The "grievance journal" sent shivers up my spine and could be a sign of mental illness. Do not be a party to her machinations.
You should keep in touch with your son. Perhaps he has a close sibling who could reach out to him, or maybe you could contact him while he is at work. You need to determine if he is afraid of her, and you should help him to leave this relationship if he wants to. If he stays, keep the door open for communication.
This is not normal and it is not right. Women are not the only victims of domestic abuse, but men's stories are seldom told. The Domestic Abuse Helpline for Men and Women has a helpful website and hotline.
DEAR AMY: Recently you published a letter from a 16-year-old sexually active girl. You suggested that she and her boyfriend should go to Planned Parenthood together. Way back in 1976, I was an 18-year-old unprepared young man. The love of my life was 16.
After our first night "together" we had a pregnancy scare and had several serious talks about what to do. We went to Planned Parenthood. They gave us advice and helped us get her on birth control.
We stopped at home afterward, and my mom asked where we had been. I told her. She said, "Great! I'm glad you kids are being responsible." Later we learned that she had become pregnant with my oldest brother the first night she met my dad back in 1941. She didn't have choices then.
This story has a happy ending. My wife and I are still in love 36 years later.-- Happy Husband in Wisconsin
DEAR HAPPY HUSBAND: Planned Parenthood counsels women and men about their birth control options, in addition to providing health screenings for women. Thank you for telling your story about how to face this important issue as a couple. Good for you!
DEAR AMY: This is in response to the letter from "Upset Wife," whose husband is secretly in touch with many exes. Run!
I have been with my husband for 19 years, and from the beginning he would secretly keep in touch with exes. He even went to his high school reunion without telling me just to see one of his exes. According to our cellphone records, one day they exchanged 159 text messages!
If you don't have trust, you don't have much. I wish I had cut my losses in the first year.-- Leaving Soon
DEAR LEAVING: You are right: Trust (and transparency about relationships) is paramount.
“reign in blood”
Since: May 09
#2 Nov 3, 2012
1- Good for you, you've raised a spineless pssy. Are you SURE you haven't done something wrong somewhere along the line? I can't imagine anyone cutting off contact with their parents just because their spouse wants them to. Unless there's a very compelling reason to do so.
2- All young teenagers should be encouraged to have sex, as long as they do it "carefully."
3- So leave already. I wonder why you've put up with this for 19 years. Let me guess, he provided for you and now he's about to retire and you want to cash in on his retirement? Amiright?
“Where is Everyone?”
Since: Jul 12
#3 Nov 3, 2012
L1: I'm amazed you are so ready to comply with that wish. You could call a counsellor and get everyone in family counselling, you could keep contact with your son at work, you could write a letter to his wife -- there are so many options. The last one I would take is what they requested before I looked into the other options.
L2: PSA. Okay.
L3: I'm not in Edog's camp that the LW is trying to get his retirement -- that's not worth 19 years of anyone's life. But why the heck DID you stay for 19 years?
Since: Mar 09
#4 Nov 3, 2012
L1: There's a back story here, unless this chick is really just crazy controlling.
L2: How nice. You do realize that being married for 36 years to the person who popped your cherry is unusual though, right?
L3: What Toj said. Why did you put up with his "keeping in touch with exes" for all that time?
#5 Nov 3, 2012
There is a probably a back story. While what the wife has done sounds crazy controlling if it was being done of her own accord, it's also the same steps many therapists have the person go through when trying to deal with toxic relative issues.
Keep the journal so that you have the ongoing record of what's going on/people can't convince you you're crazy.
Stop interacting with the relative personally.
If another person is still interacting with the person and bringing the drama home, then you have to deal with either asking the other person to stop or also separating yourself from that person.
#6 Nov 3, 2012
I liked Amy's advice. The son may not have a strong personality to stand up to his wife's allegations. I have a family member who has done this type of crap on a more sutle basis. Amy's advice opened my eyes to the fact that it is a form of domestic abuse.
#7 Nov 4, 2012
1: None of the crap will work if son refuses to stand up.
My mom's bro is one of the nicest guys you'll ever meet. He married a freaking looneybin! She's been kicked out of churches, has issues with every neighbor, and listens in on all phone calls. He won't do anything so we see him at funerals and maybe an occasional family event...his choice to stay.
2: Oh, she had choices, moron.
I'd say not spreading your legs to a man you just met is one...
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