Must read for couples: Mother-in-law and wife journey to acceptance

mother in law
Please read to the end
Just two years after our marriage, hubby brought
up the idea of asking Mother to move from the
rural hometown and spend her remaining years
with us. Hubby's father passed away while he
was still very young. Mother endured much
hardship and struggled all on her own to provide
for him, see him through to a university degree.
You could say that she suffered a great deal and
did everything you could expect of a woman to
bring hubby to where he is today. I immediately
agreed and started packing the spare room, which
has a balcony facing the South to let her enjoy
the sunshine and plant greenery. Hubby stood in
the bright room, and suddenly just picked me up
and started spinning round and round. As I
begged him to put me down, he said: "Lets go
fetch mother".

Hubby is tall and big sized and I love to test on
his chest and enjoy the feeling that he could pick
me up at any moment put the tiny me into his
pockets. Whenever we have an argument and
both refuses to back down, he would pick me up
and spin me over his head continuously until I
surrender and beg for mercy. I became addicted
to this kind of panic-joy feeling.
Mother brought along her countryside habits and
lifestyle with her. For example; I am so used to
buying flowers to decorate the living room, she
could not stand it and would comment: "I do not
know how you young people spend your money,
why do you buy flowers for? You also can't eat
flowers!" I smiled and said: "Mum, with flowers in
the house, our mood will also become better."
Mother continues to grumble away, and hubby
smiled: "Mum, this is a city-people’s habit; slowly
you will get use to it". Mother stopped saying
But every time thereafter, whenever came home
with flowers, she would ask me how much it
costs. I told her and she would shake her head
and express displeasure. Sometimes, when I come
home with lots of shopping bags, she would ask
each and every item how much they cost, I would
tell her honestly and she would get even more
upset about it.. Hubby playfully pinched my nose
and said: "You little fool, just don't tell her the
full price of everything would solve it." There
begins the friction to our otherwise happy
Mother hates it most when hubby wakes up early
to prepare the breakfast. In your view, how could
the man of the house cook for the wife? At the
breakfast table, mother facial expression is
always like the dark clouds before a thunderstorm
and I would pretend not to notice. She would use
her chopsticks and make a lot of noise with it as
her silent protest. As I am a dance teacher in the
Children's Palace and am exhausted from along
day of dancing around, I do not wish to give up
the luxury of that additional few minutes in the
comfort of my bed and hence I turned a deaf ear
to all the
protest mother makes.
From time to time, mother would help out with
some housework, but soon her help created
additional work for me. For example: she would
keep all kinds of plastic bags accumulating them
so that she sell them later on, and resulted in our
house being filled with all the trash bags; she
would scrimp on dish washing detergent when
helping to wash the dishes and so as not to hurt
her feelings, I would quietly wash them again.
One day, late at night, mother saw me quietly
washing the dishes, and "Bam" she slams her
bedroom door and cried very loudly in her room.
Hubby was placed in a difficult position, and after
that, he did not speak to me for that entire night.
I pretended to be a spoilt child, tried acting cute,
but he totally ignored me.... I got mad and asked
him: "What did I do wrong?" Hubby stared at me
and said: "Can't you just give in to her once? We
couldn't possibly die eating from a bowl however
unclean it is, right?" After that incident, for a
long period of time, mother did not speak to me
and you can feel that there is a very awkward
feeling hanging in the house.
During that period of cold war, hubby was caught
in dilemma as to who to please. In order to stop
her son from having to prepare breakfast, mother
took on the "all important" task of preparing
breakfast without any prompting. At the breakfast
table, mother would look at hubby happily eating
his breakfast and cast that reprimanding stare at
me for having failed to perform my duty as a
wife. To avoid the embarrassing breakfast
situation, I resorted to buying my own breakfast
on my way to work. That night, while in bed,
hubby was a little upset and asked me: "LD, is it
because you think that mum's cooking is not
clean that's why you chose not to eat at home?"
He then turned his back on me and left me alone
in tears as feeling of unfairness overwhelmed
me.. After some time, hubby sighed: "LD, just for
me, can you have breakfast at home?" I am left
with no choice but to return to the breakfast
The next morning, I was having porridge prepared
by mother and I felt a sudden churn in my
stomach and everything inside seem to be
rushing up my throat. I tried to suppress the urge
to throw up but I could not. I threw down the
bowl, rushed into the washroom, and vomited
everything out. Just as I was catching my breath,
I saw mother crying and grumbling very loudly in
her dialect, hubby was standing at the washroom
doorway staring at me with fire burning in his
eyes... I opened my mouth but no words came
out of it, I really did not mean it.
We had our very first big fight that day; mother
took a look at us, then stood up and slowly made
her way out of the house. Hubby gave me a final
stare in the eye and followed mother down the
stairs. For three days, hubby did not return home,
not even a phone call. I was so furious, since
mother arrived; I had been trying my best and
putting up with her, what else do you want me to
do? For no reason, I keep having the feeling to
throw up and I simply have not appetite for food,
coupled with all the events happening at home, I
was at then low point in my life. Finally, a
colleague said: "LD, you look terrible; you should
go and see a doctor." The doctor confirmed that I
am pregnant.
Now it became clear to me why I threw up that
fateful morning, a sense of sadness floated
through that otherwise happy news. Why didn't
hubby, and mother who had been through this
before, thought of the possibility of this being the
reason that day? At the hospital entrance, I saw
my hubby standing there. It had only been three
days, but he looked haggard. I had wanted
To turn and leave, but one look at him and my
heart soften, I couldn't resist and called out to
him. He followed my voice and finally found me
but he pretended that he doesn't know me; he
has that disgusted look in his eyes that cut right
through my heart. I told myself not to look at him
anymore, and hail a cab. At that moment, I have
such a strong urge inside me to shout to my
hubby: "Darling, I am having your baby!" and have
him lift me up and spin me around in circles of
joy. What I wanted didn't happen and as I sat in
the cab, my tears started rolling down. Why? Why
our love couldn't even withstand the test of one
Back home, I lay on the bed thinking about my
hubby, and the disgusted look in his eyes. I cried
and wet the corner of the blanket. That night,
sound of the drawers opening woke me up. I
switched on the lights and I saw hubby with tears
rolling down his face. He was removing the
money. I stared at him in silence; he ignored me,
took the bank deposit book and some money and
left the house. Maybe he really intends to leave
me for good. What a rational man, so clear-cut in
love and money matters. I gave a few dried laugh
and tears starting streaming down again.
The next day, I did not go to work.. I wanted to
clear this out and have a good talk with hubby. I
reached his office and his secretary gave me a
weird look and said: "Mr. Tan's mother had a
traffic accident and is now in the hospital." I
stood there in shock. I rushed to the hospital and
by the time I found hubby, mother had already
passed away. Hubby did not look at me,
His face was expressionless. I looked at mother's
pale white and thin face and I couldn't control the
tears in my eyes. My god, how could this happen?
Throughout the funeral, hubby did not say a
single word to me, with only the occasional
disgusted stare at me. I only managed to find out
brief facts about the accident from other people.
That day, after mother left the house, she walked
in dazed toward the bus stop, apparently
intending to go back to her old house back in the
countryside. As hubby ran after her, she tried to
walk faster and as she tried to cross the street, a
public bus came and hit her... I finally understood
how much hubby must hate me, if I had not
thrown up that morning, if we had not quarreled,
if.... In his heart, I am indirectly the killer of his
Hubby moved into mother's room and came home
every night with a strong liquor smell on him. And
me, I am buried under the guilt and self-pity and
could hardly breathe. I wanted to explain to him,
tell him that we are going to have our baby soon,
but each time, I saw the dead look in his eyes, all
the words I have at the brink of my mouth just
fell back in. I had rather he hit me real hard or
give me a big and thorough scolding though none
of these events happening had been my fault at
Many days of suffocating silence went by and as
the days went by, hubby came home later and
later. The deadlock between us continues, we
were living together like strangers who don't
know each other. I am like the dead knot in his
heart. One day, I passed by a western restaurant,
looking into the glass window, I saw hubby and a
girl sitting facing each other and he very lightly
brushed her hair for her, I understood what it
meant. After recovering from that moment of
shock, I entered the restaurant, stood in front of
my hubby and stared hard at him, not a tear in
my eyes. I have nothing to say to him, and there
is no need to say anything. The girl looked at me,
looks at hubby, stands up and wanted to go,
hubby stretched out his hand and stopped her. He
stared back at me, challenging me.. I can only
hear my slow heart beat, beating, one by one as
if at the brink of death. I eventually backed down,
if I had stood that any longer, I will collapse
together with the baby inside me. That night, he
did not come home; he had chosen to use that as
a way to indicate to me: Following mother's
death so did our love for each other.
He did not come home anymore after that.
Sometimes, when I returned home from work, I
can tell that the cupboard had been touched - he
had returned to take some of his stuff.. I no
longer wish to call him; the initial desire to
explain everything to him vanished. I lived alone; I
go for my medical checkups alone, my heart
breaks again and again every time I see a guy
carefully helping his wife through the physical
examination. My office colleagues hinted to me to
consider aborting the baby, I told them No, I will
not.. I insisted on having to this baby, perhaps it
is my way of repaying mother for causing her
One day, I came home and I saw hubby sitting in
the living room. The whole house was filled with
cigarette smoke. On the coffee table, there was
this piece of paper. I know what it is all about
without even looking at it. In the two months plus
of living alone, I have gradually learned to find
peace within myself. I looked at him, removed my
hat and said: "You wait a while, I will sign." He
looked at me, mixed feelings in his eyes, just like
mine. As I hang up my coat, I keep repeating to
myself "You cannot cry, you cannot cry..." my
eyes hurt terribly, but I refused to let tears come
out from there. After I hung up my coat, hubby's
eyes stared fixed at my bulging tummy. I smiled,
walked over to the coffee table and pulled the
paper towards me. Without even looking at what
it says, I signed my name on it and pushed the
paper to him. "LD, are you pregnant?" Since
mother's accident, this is the first time he spoke
to me. I could not control my tears any
further and they fell like raindrops. I said: "Yes,
but its ok, you can
leave now." He did not go, in the dark, we sat,
facing each other. Hubby slowly moved over me,
his tears wet the blanket. In my heart, everything
seems so far away, so far that even if I sprint, I
could never reach them. I cannot remember how
many times he repeated "sorry" to me. I had
originally thought that I would forgive him, but
now I can't. In the western restaurant, in front of
that girl, that cold look in his eyes, I will never
forget, ever. We have drawn such deep scars in
each other's heart. For me, it's unintentional; for
him, totally intentional. I had been waiting for this
moment of reconciliation, but I realized now,
what had gone past is gone forever and could not
Other than the thought of the baby inside me that
would bring some warmth to my heart, I am
totally cold towards him, I no longer eat anything
he buys for me, I don't take any presents from
him and I stopped talking to him. From the
moment I signed on that piece of paper, marriage
and love had vanished from my heart. Sometimes,
hubby will try to come into the bedroom,
but when he walks in, I will walk out to the living
room. He had no choice but to sleep in mother's
room. At night, from his room, I can hear light
sounds of groaning, I kept quiet... This used to be
his trick; last time, whenever I ignore him, he
would fake illness and I will surrender and find
out what is wrong with him, he would then grab
me and laugh. He has forgotten that last time I
cared for him and am concerned because there
was love, but now, what is there between us?
Hubby's groaning came on and off
continuing but I continuously ignored him.
Almost everyday, he would buy something for the
baby, infant products, children products and
books that kids like to read. Bags and bags of it
stacked inside his room till it is full. I know he is
trying to use this to reach out to me, but I am no
longer moved by his actions. He has no choice
but to lock himself in his room and I can hear his
typing away on his computer keyboard, maybe he
is now addicted to web surfing but none of that
matters to me anymore.
It was sometime towards the end of spring in the
following year, one late night, I screamed because
of a sudden stomach pain, hubby came rushing
into the room, its like he did not change and
sleep, and had been waiting for this moment. He
carried me and ran down the stairs, stopped a
car, holding my hand very tightly and kept wiping
the sweat off my brow, throughout the
journey to the hospital. Once we reached the
hospital, he carried me and hurried into the
delivery suite. Lying on the back of his skinny but
warmth body, a thought crossed my mind: In my
lifetime, who else would love me as much as he
did? He held the delivery suite door opened and
watch me go in; his warm eyes caused me to
manage a smile at him despite my contraction
pain. Coming out of the delivery room, hubby
looked at our son and me, eyes tear with joy and
he kept smiling. I reached out and touched his
hand. Hubby looked at me, smiling and then he
slowly collapsed onto the floor. I cried out for him
in pain... He smiled, but without opening that
tired eyes of his.... I had thought that I would
never shed any tear for him, but the truth is, I
have never felt a deeper pain cutting through my
body at that moment. Doctor said that by the
time hubby discovered he had liver cancer, it was
already in terminal stage and it was a miracle
that he managed to last this long. I asked the
doctor when he first discovered he had cancer.
Doctor said about 5 months ago and consoled me
saying: "Prepare for his funeral."
I disregarded the nurse's objection and rushed
home, I went into his room and checked his
computer, and a suffocating pain hits me.
Hubby's cancer was discovered 5 months ago, his
groaning was real, and I had thought that... the
computer showed over 200 thousand words he
wrote for our son: "Son, just for you, I have
persisted, to be able to take a look at you before
I fall, is my biggest wish now.... I know that in
your life, you will have many happiness and
maybe some setbacks, if only I can accompany
you throughout that journey, how nice would it
be. But daddy now no longer has that chance.
Daddy has written inside here all the possible
difficulties and problems you may encounter
during your lifetime, when you meet with these
problems, you can refer to daddy's suggestion ...
Son, after writing these 200 thousand words, I
feel as if I have accompanied you through life
journey. To be
honest, daddy is very happy. Do love your mother,
she has suffered, she is the one who loves you
most and also the one who loves me most...."
From play school to primary school, to secondary,
university, to work and even in dealing with
questions of love, everything big and small was
written there.
Hubby has also written a letter for me: "My dear,
to marry you is my biggest happiness, forgive me
for the pain I have caused you, forgive me for not
telling you my illness, because I want to see you
be in a joyful mood waiting for the arrival of our
baby.... My dear, if you cried, it means that you
have forgiven me and I would smile, thank you for
loving me... These presents, I'm afraid I cannot
give them to our son personally, could you help
me to give some of them to him every year, the
dates on what to give when are all written on the
packaging... "
Going back to the hospital, hubby is still in coma.
I brought our son over and place him beside him.
I said: "Open your eyes and smile, I want our son
to remember being in the warmth of your arms..."
He struggled to open his eyes and managed a
weak smile. Our son still in his arms was happily
waving his tiny hands in the air. I press the
button on the camera and the sound of
the shutter rang through the air as tears slowly
rolled down my face.... A fatal misunderstanding
and the person who loves me the most in this
world is gone forever...." Cruel misunderstandings
one after another disrupted the blissful footsteps
to our family. Our originals intend of having
Mother enjoy some quiet and peaceful moments
in her remaining years with us went terribly wrong
as destiny's secret is finally revealed at a price,
everything became too late."...... ...
This is a true story.

I am totally speechless, this story brought tears
to my eyes as I read through each line eager to
know what would happen next. It truly showed
the devastating power of grudges and anger!
Simple humility and communication would have
resolved most of the problems in that story, as
well as patience..... This story has really touched
my heart and life as a whole and it has
stimulated a paradigm shift. Though it is very
sad, it is also very refreshing to know that from
today, I can consciously start to live a life free of
People please let's live a life devoid of grudge.
Communication is the key.