When I (F/24) was 4, my parents divorced because my mom cheated on my dad with her ex high school sweetheart and got pregnant. My younger brother was the result of her affair and she ended up marrying her “husband”. I refer to him as “husband” because he treats her terribly and is verbally abusive towards her but she’s extremely codependent and will never leave.
My mom got custody in the divorce, so I lived with her and her “husband” until I moved out the day after high school graduation. I was maybe 4 years old when they got married, and he was wonderful to me before they got married and he had his own child. Afterwards, he literally became a monster and became verbally abusive and more than once threw me at things and demeaned me to the point that I’m still affected by it today. Through all this, my mom always took his side and he could do no wrong. He clearly had bipolar issues and his mood would change on a whim – I was so scared of him as a child that all he had to do was look at me and I’d burst into tears. He told me I was shit at every hobby I had and told me I was fat so often that I starved myself in high school. There was even a time when he threw me, I landed on top of my bent wrist and I was in pain for months. I told my mom and she told me I was fine, never took me to the doctor I assume because she didn’t want to embarrass her “husband”. My mom’s entire extended family openly hates the guy because he’s a terrible person.
I was a troubled teenager and went through some rough patches with my mom growing up, as most females do. I was never out of control or in any legal trouble, just boy crazy and mouthy towards my mom. Her “husband” took my house keys at 17 and I was told I was only allowed to come and go from the house whenever my mom left for work and came home. I wasn’t allowed in the house between 6 am and 7 pm and he refused to let me in so I would sit alone in my car in the dollar tree parking lot until it was time for school. Needless to say, I moved out the day after I graduated and never looked back but still keep in touch regularly with my mom. I even tried to be the better person while I was in college and talk to her “husband” for the sake of everyone getting along. I was told that I needed to apologize to him for never “accepting him as my father”. Obviously I refused. My mom told me that he’s always hated me because at 4 years old I refused to call him dad. Because I have my own dad, and her “husband” never did anything to deserve to be called “dad”.
My senior year of college I started dating a black guy (I’m white) and that’s when all hell broke loose. My mom’s “husband” threatened to divorce her because I was an embarrassment to the family and I wasn’t allowed to go to their house anymore. My own brother is so brainwashed from his dad that he doesn’t talk to me anymore and has only texted me 2-3 times in the last 5 years. He constantly tells my brother bad things about me behind my back even though I haven’t spoke to him in years. My own mother started faking “panic attacks” over me dating a black man. I know they were fake because my brother was in Walmart with her and she was just fine while texting me that she was having a panic attack. I’ve kept my distance since all of this, but I do still try to meet up and get dinner with my mom every few months just to see her. I’ve always been treated as the black sheep of the family, but the irony of it all is that I’m the only one in the family with a happy relationship and a successful career. My mom and her “husband” are both unhappy with their jobs, relationship, and life in general.
The last straw was pulled this morning. I’ve been planning for weeks to go to my brother’s graduation and my mom told me I’d be able to come. His high school is holding graduation at a drive in theater, and each student is allowed to invite 1 car of people. I absolutely hate the idea of sitting in a car with that awful man for 4 hours, but I was going to do it anyways. I don’t want to miss my brother’s graduation. I never had any plans to stir up an argument with my mom’s “husband”, my brother’s graduation is not the time or place and that would be incredibly selfish. I was even planning to take off work the next day and give him a good amount of money as a grad gift to help with college. My mom informed me this morning that my brother and her “husband” decided that I’m not allowed to come to his graduation because they are afraid I would start an argument. She wasn’t even going to tell me, I had to repeatedly ask about event details before she told me. That stabbed me in the chest with that one, that’s my brother and I’m being excluded from watching him graduate. And what makes me sick is that I know my mom went right along with it like she always does. She has never once taken my side my whole life even though she’ll admit to me that she knows it’s wrong.
I’m just so done with that side of my family and the endless bullshit that my mom justifies her “husband” doing. I’ve never been treated as a part of that family, and as an adult I’m starting to realize I don’t want to be part of it anyways. I’m cutting my mom and brother off, hurts like hell, but I think my life will be much happier without them.
I have a wonderful healthy relationship with my dad and stepmom. I have had zero contact with my mom’s “husband” for the last 4-5 years. I’ve done some thinking and I’ll still keep in touch with my brother. At 18 he’s just a kid and isn’t old enough to realize how f**ked the whole situation is. I can’t fault him for who raised him, and I hope that one day he’ll be independent enough to realize how awful of a person his dad is.