Jason Patterson, Industrial Butcher (1999-present)
When my first wife and I were newly married, her mother and her mothers second husband moved in to our home with us. I thought this was odd and had mentioned it to my mother. She told me that this was a normal thing that some newlyweds did back in her day. The new couple would move in with the parents in order to save money for their down payment on their first house.
“No, mom, her mother and stepfather moved in with US” I clarified. Well, I’m sure that can be helpful too, she said. My wife had just given birth to twins, unexpectedly, and she had a daughter from a previous relationship. The father has not paid one thin dime in child support to this day. It was a pretty big financial responsibility, but I was making good money working my ass off at a good job.
We were doing pretty good, not a lavish lifestyle by any means, but comfortable. All that changed once the in-laws moved in. They didn’t pay rent, they didn’t buy groceries, they didn’t clean up or help with the kids, nothing. I had to start taking extra hours at work, just to make ends meet with my two new “kids”. After a 60 hour work week, I would like to get myself a case of beer for the weekend and my wife enjoyed a bottle of rye.
Two months in, my in-laws informed me that the polite thing to do would be to offer to pick up a case of beer and bottle of liquor for them as well. Money became so tight that we were forced to move to a bigger city where I had found a higher paying job. Unfortunately that also meant a higher cost of living, higher rent, all on top of having to rent a truck to move the in-laws stuff to our new house.
It got to a point where we started to fall behind on rent ant utilities, but I just kept working as many hours as I could get. I was determined to get caught up and ahead. I brought up the idea with my wife that maybe her mother and step father could maybe start chipping in on the rent and utilities or maybe start looking for a place of their own. Big mistake. Of course there was a huge argument when her mother found out. She said if I was so unappreciative of them, I should just move out.
But anyway, I had to work the next day, so nothing got resolved. I did my banking on my lunch break as usual, and noticed the rent was paid early. This was odd and I didn’t want any mix ups, so I called the real estate office to inquire if I could pick up the receipt after work. They told me no rent had been paid, I still owed $1,200 for the month.
When I got home that night I broke the bad news to my wife so we could figure out what we were gonna do. My wife told me not to worry, her mother had offered to take the rent up to the realtors office. She was “helping out” because of the argument last night. Upon hearing us discussing them, her mother came running in. I asked her for the receipt or the money back.
She was adamant that she had paid the rent that morning and couldn’t get a receipt because she wasn’t on the lease. I told her I had called the realtor at noon and no rent had been paid so could I have my money back for the rent. She got this hugely offended look on her face and thundered “How DARE you check up on Me!!!” The rent had been blown in an afternoon and I never saw it again.
She said so many inappropriate things during the course of this, but that last one is the one that sticks with me to this day. Of course we got evicted. I got another house to rent and of course the in-laws tagged along. My marriage ended shortly after that. Due to a fight caused by my mother in-law, on the phone, coaching my wife what to say.
My wife told me to leave, our marriage was over, and I calmly agreed. I had enough. I called a buddy with a pickup truck and started loading my tools and clothes. The whole time my wife was on the phone with her mother crying “He’s really doing it, he’s really leaving, what now?” In the end she was bawling and begging me not to go, saying her mother told her to say those things.
I replied that maybe if she she had asked me to stay BEFORE I had my stuff loaded, I would’ve considered it, but now I was packed, ready to go and I was going, as per her demand 30 minutes ago. After five minutes of my wife on the phone with her mother, frantically demanding that she “fix this”, she thrust the phone at me saying her mother wanted to apologize. “That’s not necessary” I said.
Like I said, I was Going! My wife convinced me to hear her mother out because “I owed her that much”. So I took the phone and said hello. Her mother had this to fix everything and make me stay. “You really are a piece of work if you leave my daughter with 3 kids.” I gave the phone back to my wife and said “ she wants to talk to you”. Got in the truck and never looked back.