Four years ago I met my husband and at the time I wasn’t Catholic. He was brought up Catholic and even though our relationship was unhealthy in many aspects, my husband was striving for holiness. He said he cared about me from the beginning and didn’t want to mess up. I was naive at the time and very young. He was my first boyfriend. He said things to me like “If you don’t convert to Catholicism, I don’t see a future for us”. So I went through RCIA because I was attracted to holiness and curious, and because a lot of pressure was put on me. I was so very reluctant because I was brought up protestant and confused about so many things. But I ended up converting in the end and am now happily practicing the faith with my husband.
My mother-in-law met me when I was going through RCIA and that was years ago. At the time I was very confused. I was always very kind to her but felt so very uncomfortable. She was being so pushy with the faith (more so than my husband), and I just wasn’t ready for it. Let’s just say they were going about it in all of the wrong ways and obviously not very kindly or lovingly. Just boisterous and arrogant when I didn’t understand things and very in my face. Naturally, I was put off by it and was more shy when she was around. I didn’t feel like I could be myself without getting judged harshly. She would act nice to my face, but behind my back would talk horribly to my husband (boyfriend at the time). The first couple years of our relationship sometimes she would be able to brainwash my husband with things that weren’t true or twisted and he would “attack” me with words. I cared about him and understood the situation, and got mad but also explained it to him nicely. For the last two years, thankfully my husband has realized how abusive and manipulative she can be and understands how he was abusive too.
My husband stopped talking to her for awhile because she would not acknowledge our relationship and called me his “friend”, even after we’ve been married almost a year. She continues to bring stuff up from the past that’s either twisted, plain out not true, etc. I can not tell you the number of times my husband and I have apologized to her (mostly in the beginning until we stopped putting up with the abusiveness) for misunderstandings in the past to just be kind and Christ-like but it has just not worked at all. Nothing makes her happy.
I haven’t seen her for over 3 years and my husband hasn’t seen her for about a year. She never came to our wedding. We’re making a trip back to his hometown. We haven’t been in contact with her in months because the conversations never start or end healthy. Since it has been awhile my husband sent her a casual email seeing if she’d like to meet up with us. We have no idea when we’ll be back to visit again. She writes an email saying she wouldn’t feel comfortable, is already feeling sick just thinking about sitting across the table from us, and thinks it would be a bad idea. My husband replied saying “No problem Mom. Just so you know we’ve been praying for you and our family every day and forgiven the situation. We don’t have any ill will or negative feelings and would like to see you if you change your mind”. I thought that was such a great reply but unfortunately she replied today bringing up stuff from the past, talking horribly about me and calling me his “friend”, and just being so abusive saying bad things about my husband. Obviously, this behavior from her was to be expected, but it had been awhile since we spoke to her so we thought we’d try to be Christ like and try again.
I am annoyed with my mother-in-law because at one point in time she had a great relationship with my husband, and I would like for that to happen again. Since my husband met me his relationship with her has been rocky, obviously. He hasn’t been perfect either, and has got into arguments that she holds grudges about, but that stopped at least 2 years ago and he has apologized to her. But she is making it impossible for us to have a healthy relationship with her and I know that hurts my husband a lot. Sure, she has been abusive and negative, but I have no problem moving on and forgiving her if she can be respectful to us, for my husband’s sake. Obviously, this is not the case, and sometimes situations just aren’t going to work out and people have to go their separate ways. We’ll continue to pray for her every day, but does anyone else have advice? Would you continue to check in on her every now and then on the phone or email, even though she won’t talk if she knows i’m there and won’t acknowledge our relationship? Should we just simply stop all contact? What if we are blessed with children one day? Given how she is treating us now, would you not trust your children to be seen by a lady who was very abusive to you?