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My mom had me at 18 and raised me as a single mom.  As a retail worker, her hours were long and hard.  She always put me first.  I owe her so much and I proudly considered myself a mama's boy.

My dad left when I was 4.  My relationship with him growing up was non-existent at best to abusive at worst.  For years I harbored resentment towards him and often wished something awful would happen to him.  About 10 years ago he was diagnosed with MS and he changed dramatically to the point that I started considering rebuilding a relationship with him. 

In January, I finally talked with my mom about what happened to my older son after she sent Christmas presents to the boys and a birthday present to my younger son.  I told her she cannot be married to the man that molested my son AND have a relationship with my son.  She said she could not leave her husband.   I said goodbye.

Over the last few years, my father, whom can barely walk even with the support of a walker,  cared of my grandfather in the later stages of life.  Feeding, diapering...whatever.  My grandfather is the most significant and influential person in my life.  During that time, I have slowly built a relationship with him...even saying I love you to him clearly...not just rushed through it.

I am struggling with the fact that the person who sacrificed everything for me I shut out of my life and the person that left us is really, outside of my wife and kids, in many ways the only family I have.  I know I made the right decision to cut my mom out of my life and take some comfort that I have never second guessed this.  But something feels off about this...not right.  Maybe the family I always had growing up is now nearly gone and the family I resented is all I have.

I don't know what I expect from posting this...but I needed to for myself.  I dunno.   

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I'm no psychologist, but I imagine you are really hurt (and as you accurately described, betrayed) by the one person who always stood by your side. Of course that feels not right.

You probably never expected your dad to change, either. I am glad that he came around and that you were able to repair that. Maybe some day there will be redemption for your mom but that will have to be up to you. I think it's different when someone hurts your kids versus you.

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I feel for your situation, Hobbes. I’m sorry you are going through this. If there are motions you are taking to help find peace and justice then I hope you are successful at them.

You aren’t alone in having to deal with these things. As someone who’s been told that, I know it doesn’t help initially, but knowing there are people that understand in some way what you’re going through does eventually provide some measure of calm.

From what I understand here, what you and your family are dealing with will be something you will need to work on and rework on repeatedly through life. That seems crushing even blunt, I know from experience, but understanding there is no quick fix or magic answer was useful for my journey.

As for your journey, you can move forward, and when you think you can’t, there are people that can help you along the way.

If you can afford it, definitely reach out to a therapist. If you can’t, there are usually groups you can attend which, as awkward as they seem at first, can provide good support. This is a leg work thing for you however, not being familiar with your location of course.

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I see these as two separate situations.  Your father seems to have changed.   People can change for the better.  I think reconciling with your Dad is a good thing.  You should not feel guilty reconciling with him.  

I think it is very unfortunate that your mom chooses to stand by the man who hurt your son, but you made the right call.  Perhaps unlike your Dad, your Mom also changed, but in this case, she changed for the worse.  Perhaps one day, you will be able to reconcile with her, but I know that only one thing will allow for that, and at present, that is unlikely.  

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I think it's our nature, and the nature of trauma, to put things one a timeline oh who did what awful thing when. Sometimes we have to, because we need the context to decide if we are going to forgive or not.

I'm a very giving person, and I give people who hurt me a lot fo chances, probably more than I should. I do not like things being unresolved. But sometimes, forgiveness isn't possible. That said, you can't carry the weight of NOT forgiving somebody. Forgiveness and absolution are two different things, sometimes they go together, sometimes they don't.

You can forgive a person and welcome them back.

You can choose not to forgive, and hold a grudge.

You can choose not to forgive, but absolve yourself of hanging on to that resentment.

These are all valid and the only thing that should really direct them is how you want to feel, and what feels right. Things like time, severity of the trauma, and what you THINK the response should be can effect you-- but they can also make you misjudge what you need to do to move ahead with your life.

As long as you feel as though things are in the right place, right now, that's what matters less than the path to get there.

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It's shocking when you have the realisation that people may not be the people you believed them to be all along. I'm glad you have made repairs to your relationship with your father, but sorry you are going through this loss with your mother. It's shit, no two ways about it. But you've made the right call. Your family is your wife and kids and from what you have said here you have done right by them. Stay strong man, but talk whenever you need.

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  • 1 month later...

I got a text from my mom that my grandma passed this morning.  My grandma and I were pretty close, but I haven't seen her in two years because of COVID.

For the last week she was on her death bed...which no one told me.  After getting the text, I was going to drive to Kansas City (about a 14 hours) and spend a few days there but I was told there wasn't going to be a service and everyone is tired because it was a long week so not to bother.  I talked to my aunt and was told my mom is in real bad shape because of me and she hinted at that I should forgive her and move on.  I don't know how that would work...she is still with her husband.  Yet I am considered the bad guy here. 

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I don’t cuss, so this is really extreme: fuck them. If they think you’re the bad guy, then they either innocently don’t know what’s going on or they’re molester protecting pieces of shit and you’re better off without them.

This is black and white, good and evil stuff. And if they want to choose to be evil, that’s not on you.

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1 hour ago, Fozzie said:

I don’t cuss, so this is really extreme: fuck them. If they think you’re the bad guy, then they either innocently don’t know what’s going on or they’re molester protecting pieces of shit and you’re better off without them.

This is black and white, good and evil stuff. And if they want to choose to be evil, that’s not on you.

Ditto every word of this. 

I know things with family can get muddled and complex, but to us here on the outside looking in, it's painfully black and white. 

I'm so sorry about your grandma though. Was she the last person holding you to that side of the family?

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I am sorry about your grandma.  I have to say I am +3 on what Fozzie said.  Not to mention it is curious no one told you anything about your grandma until after the fact.  Outside in, that is a total dick move and intentional.  You still have to put your kids first.

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Giant hugs on losing your own Nan.  

Nevermind your family. Have a small service to remember your grandmother. Something like that helps you move through some stages of grief. You can do it in your own home or drive out to Kansas City and hold it in a park or someplace your Nan loved to remember her. We should cherish our good memories. When Mom passed we had a small remembrance ceremony where we said the rosary and just remembered the best things about my Mom.

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I liked and unliked and reminded what Fozzie said multiple times because he nailed it.

You can grieve for your grandmother in your own private way with your wife and kids and that is just as legit, if not more, than going to see those ***holes.

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I can almost guarantee your mom did not tell her sister what really happened. Since he is "married in" to the family I find it highly unlikely they would take his side.

I am sorry about your grandma and that you didn't find out until it was too late to say goodbye.

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Thanks all. 

I am giving the benefit of the doubt that they don't know all the details.  But still, it really sucks.  I have told some members of my family some of the story early on, but I doubt they know the full extent.  My mom doesn't really know, either. 

My grandma was a pretty awesome human being.  30 year-old single mom with five kids without a high school education in 1970 is a tough spot to be in.  Whenever I think I have it rough at work, she worked at an industrial bakery, Taystee Bread in North Kansas City, Missouri.  She stood in insane heat all day on an assembly line putting cream into Banana Boats for nearly three decades.  My dad worked there for two days and quit.  He said it was the worst job conditions he has ever seen.  Taystee was bought out by Wonder and they closed the factory less than two years before my grandma was due for full retirement.  Long story short...after working so hard to make so many people rich, she was screwed in the end.      

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A lot of drama happens when someone dies. It's like some sort of scab gets ripped off or underlying family stuff simmers to some sort of boiling point. I try to remember like I learned for teaching that there's always more sides to the story than just one. 

That being said your Grandma was awesome and I think I admire her more for her work ethic but feel terrible she got screwed in the end by the company. 

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38 minutes ago, Ms. Spam said:

A lot of drama happens when someone dies. It's like some sort of scab gets ripped off or underlying family stuff simmers to some sort of boiling point. I try to remember like I learned for teaching that there's always more sides to the story than just one. 

That being said your Grandma was awesome and I think I admire her more for her work ethic but feel terrible she got screwed in the end by the company. 

That reminded me...my grandma was a competitive roller skater dancer and a roller derby girl.  That's her in the middle.  My grandfather (whom I have met only a handful of times at funerals when I was a kid) is in the front. 

 

IMG_1655.jpg.d926daa68771b58887708f0d13755bee.jpg

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On 7/27/2021 at 1:16 PM, Ms. Spam said:

A lot of drama happens when someone dies. It's like some sort of scab gets ripped off or underlying family stuff simmers to some sort of boiling point. I try to remember like I learned for teaching that there's always more sides to the story than just one. 

That being said your Grandma was awesome and I think I admire her more for her work ethic but feel terrible she got screwed in the end by the company. 

Not to derail things, but this is a good reminder that there’s no such thing as loyalty when it comes to work. Always be willing to leave to go to something better, because your company won’t think twice about screwing you over if it’ll save them half a penny.

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When my great-uncle passed, we were the only family he had left, and we passed on a memorial because why spend all that money for like 8 mourners?

So we did our own thing to mourn and celebrate. And it worked for us. Do something like go out for your grandma's favorite food. It'll be special and you don't have to deal with that horrible man your mom married.

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