Friday, June 12, 2015

When Love is No Longer on the Table by Sondra Dumont

When we were living with my Elder father-in-law and my Pioneer mother-in-law, (we were still Jehovah's Witnesses, at the time), we were waiting for the settlement check from my son's death to pay my in-laws $40,000 to build an addition onto their beautiful home.  

At this point, I was seriously unsure of being a Witness any longer.  I was also going through shock treatment and was suicidal.  Life seemed very dim and dark for me.  I felt trapped, because my husband seemed to still be trying to be a better Jehovah's Witness (JW).  I wanted us, as a family, to be free.  I wanted to be free.

During this time, my father-in-law tried to convince my husband that I was no good and to kick me out, to leave me in the street.  He would provide for my son and husband.  He would take care of them.  I thought that maybe I should make that decision a little easier on everyone, since it was clear I was not wanted.  I had devoted my life to my husband and children.  One already dead and gone, the other trapped in a life I did not want for him.

We got the settlement check and paid the man his $40,000.  My husband then told my Father-in-law that he, in fact, would not be leaving me.  He loved me dearly.  I was ill and needed him and he would not turn his back on the woman he loved.  

We were given three days to get our things and move out.  "Fine," we said.  "Give us our money back, so we can buy a house with it."  We were then given a list of every little item ever purchased for our two sons.  Gifts, food, snacks while they were visiting, groceries when we were so poor we could not afford to eat, vitamins Grandma thought they needed because they were better than the ones I bought. EVERY item ever purchased since they were born. This was clearly done over time. It came to over $11,000. Then they charged us for rent and utilities, which I thought was fair. Then they charged us another $8,000 just because. They gave us about $20,000 back and put us out in the street. 

We prayed.  HARD.  I still believed in the power of prayer at the time. Some may say what happened next was due to prayer.  I believed it was at the time. Now I just believe that I am a smart woman who knows how to do her research.
I found a new, modular house on 5 acres, for sale by owner.  We had the money from the settlement of my son's death. Cash. The house came furnished, completely.  It was cheap.  I could not believe the price they were asking, at the time, $22,000 below value.  We bought it outright and were moved into the new, modular house on 5 acres in 10 days from the moment I saw it.  We took it at the time to mean that Jehovah was indeed seeing how we were being treated and how wrong it was.  

I decided to leave the organization then and there!  6 months later, my husband followed.  My son left after a couple of years when he was old enough to understand what he was seeing.  We are all out , free and happy.  The happiest we have ever been.

My In-laws have not spoken a word to us since.  They hate us.  My son understands this and cares not that they never contact him.  My husband and I have a much easier life without their judgemental eyes on us.  Their critical words and tone.  Their hypocrisy.