You Can Show Him The Back Door

, , , , | Related | September 9, 2019

(My husband’s brother has always been incredibly lazy and has always had everything done for him. He is in his fifties, never moved out of home, and is morbidly obese. After the passing of their parents, all the siblings decide to pack up and renovate the family home to sell it. We have to put off our own renovations to do this. My brother-in-law does nothing to find a new place to live and does not lift a hand to help out. Their sisters are fed up with having to work around him while he does nothing but watch TV. They pull the television out in an effort to get him to do something; he then just sits at his computer all day. Eventually, the sisters demand that he moves out and because he’s not done anything about it, he has to grudgingly move in with us “temporarily.” So, after two months of my husband working on the house every weekend and every day after working full time, he moves in.)

Brother-In-Law: *looking out our back door* “Hmpf, I thought you would have the deck done by the time I moved in so that I could spend time sitting outside. You’re so lazy.”

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Can’t Hold A Candle To His Mother

, , , , , | Related | August 10, 2019

This happened as my fiance and I were getting ready to move into our own place. 

His mother and grandmother were going through their old plates and other household items to show them to us to see if we’d be interested in taking anything with us. (No, not really, they had very different tastes than I do). 

One of the household items they unearthed was a set of depression-era candle holders. One pair was crystal, and the other was coin glass. They put them off to the side to put away later, and eventually, my fiance and I left. 

Later, they called him to accuse me of stealing a single holder from each pair. When they went to look, they were each missing one. 

As per my fiance’s suggestion, they checked the others they had left and realized that they had swapped them when putting them away. According to my husband, they never apologized for accusing me. 

And he wonders why I don’t get along with his mother.

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Regular Attendee At The Church Of Irony

, , , , , | Related | August 9, 2019

(Several years ago, for Christmas, I found an old letter to Santa where I asked for my gifts to be given to people in more need than me. Moved, and knowing my family are all big givers at Christmas, whenever they ask what I want I tell them about the letter and ask them to donate to charity in my name. One night, my father-in-law drives me home after my wife leaves our family workplace early in our car, and this exchange occurs.)

Father-In-Law: “You know, [My Name], I’m glad we got this chance. I wanted to talk to you about Christmas. You know, your mother-in-law likes giving gifts at Christmas, and she is upset that you won’t tell her what you want.”

Me: “I’ve told all of you I’d like you to donate to a charity in my name.”

Father-In-Law: “Well, don’t expect that from us. She feels she has to buy everyone a gift.” *adds with a laugh* “And I just don’t believe in charity.”

(Flash forward to this Thanksgiving. He and my mother-in-law are now going through a divorce which he unilaterally announced last Thanksgiving. In order to fit in an additional dinner to our schedule, and to save us the time and money for making a Thanksgiving dinner for just him, my wife and I invite him to our church’s Thanksgiving dinner. He behaves himself well enough, but on the way home, we have this conversation:)

Father-In-Law: “It’s good for you all that you have your little community, but I don’t think I’d go again. The price you pay is too high.”

Me: *thinking, the meal was free* “What price?”

Father-In-Law: “I guess the price you people charge for that meal is making us listen to those stories about God.”

Wife: “Yes, it’s Thanksgiving, Dad. We like to share with each other what we are thankful for. We used to do that.”

Father-In-Law: “Well, I don’t think it’s right that you all feel like you have to get together in a certain place with the same people. I talk to ‘The Man Upstairs,’ as I like to call him, and he tells me that I don’t have to go to a building to communicate with him.”

Wife: “Yes, that’s true, but he does tell us not to forsake gathering together.”

Father-In-Law: “But why is that?”

Wife: “Because, like parts of a body, we rely on each other for help doing things we may not be able to do ourselves.”

Father-In-Law: “Well, that may be true, but you don’t need a church to do that. You can take care of other people just any way you want. What I think is that the church is made up of people who say they want to help each other, but in the end, it’s just the preachers that take what people give for themselves. I’d rather not deal with that. No, I’m happy to rely on myself and not darken the door of a church.”

(Flash forward to the present. My father-in-law is looking into a retirement home, and we are along to tour the facilities.)

Tour Guide: “This is our extended studio apartment option. For your budget and living situation, it’s the largest living space we’d consider.”

Father-In-Law: “Well, I don’t know about living in some studio for the price you’re charging. Don’t you have houses?”

Tour Guide: “We have one house on the property, but it is currently occupied and is usually reserved for couples.”

Father-In-Law: “Doesn’t your location in [Large Suburb of Nearby Major City] have mostly houses?”

Tour Guide: “I’m not sure. We’re a separate company. One man founded several long-term care facilities throughout the country and named them all after his favorite theologian.”

Father-In-Law: “Well, it’s funny that you do this as a business, then! Why, back in those days, people of the church would take care of the elderly as a charity!”

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Pathologically Obsessed

, , , | Related | July 16, 2019

(My mother-in-law was one of the first speech/language pathologists trained in the United States and she thinks that speech pathology, occupational therapy, etc., are the be-all-end-all of careers for women. She tends to be EXTREMELY overbearing and has ALWAYS insisted that I follow her career path to the letter because she doesn’t want her son — her only child — to be married to someone who “isn’t like her.” I am a former truck driver — one of the few women in my area to be a truck driver — who went to college to study supply chain management but is now pursuing a career as a Certified Public Accountant. My mother-in-law isn’t happy about this.)

Me: “[Mother-In-Law], I have decided to enroll in the MBA program at [College] to get the required college accounting credits to qualify to take the CPA exam in [State].”

Mother-In-Law: “But why don’t you want to become a speech pathologist? Everyone wants to become a speech pathologist, but most people aren’t smart enough to become one.”

Me: “I hate speech pathology! I’m not comfortable sitting with children and disabled people and teaching them how to speak or swallow or whatever you people do.”

Mother-In-Law: “But speech pathology is the best career for women! I love speech pathology!”

Me: “Yes, you might love it, but I am more comfortable working with numbers and financial statements. Remember how you told me that you barely passed basic accounting when you took it while you were in college in the 1960s? I took basic accounting for my supply chain management degree and I got an A because I loved it so much. We are different people; please understand that!”

Mother-In-Law: “But everyone loves speech pathology! People don’t like accountants!”

Me: “I don’t care! People also don’t like truck drivers, despite the fact that we are the people who deliver every single good that they use in their day-to-day lives. Public perception is very flawed. Also, pretty much no one I know even understands what speech pathology is. Everyone knows what accountants do.”

Mother-In-Law: “But you should become a speech pathologist. I have always wanted a daughter-in-law who is a speech pathologist!”

Me: “That’s you. I also took a vocational test through the Department of Labor and accounting was the career that I scored highest on. My scores for speech pathology and the other health sciences were very low. Why should I do something just because you say so?”

Mother-In-Law: “Because I want you to!”

(I walked away from her at that point because she wasn’t going to understand the fact that people are different and have different interests.)

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So Much For Forgiveness And Grace…

, , , , , , , | Related | June 28, 2019

In 1992, a few months before getting married, my ex-husband wanted me to meet his parents. He did not visit them very often and when I met them, I understood why. He had told me that his mom was a former nun and his dad was a former monk. They were pretty religious people but his mother was a bit over-religious.

We invited them for dinner and when they got to our place, the first thing his mother told me was, “You are both going straight to Hell because you are living in sin!” That set the tone for the rest of this awkward evening. I think that she must have told me at least ten times that night that life is a valley of tears, that I should go confess my sins, and that Jesus died for my sins. His dad barely spoke, only saying yes or no to a few questions.

When we mentioned our upcoming wedding that was supposed to be a civil ceremony at the courthouse — my fiancé and I did not believe in religion — that did not sit well with his mom and she told us, (well, she screamed), “It will not be a real wedding because it’s not a religious one and you will still be living in sin!”

After that evening, my future ex-husband decided it would be best if they did not come to our wedding because he feared that his mother would cause a scene in front of our guests… and I did not even try to make him change his mind!  

I later learned that his Bible-thumper holy Mary of a mother was kicked out of the convent because she was caught, multiple times, having sex with another nun! She had an affair with her husband’s boss and got pregnant by him. Her husband knew because they had stopped having sex years before for religious reasons! His two older brothers had told him the stories and his dad, the one he knew as his dad, confirmed it!

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