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HomenewsWoman to Dear Abby: I Will Not Put Up With My Abusive...

Woman to Dear Abby: I Will Not Put Up With My Abusive Relative Any Longer

Abby, My husband’s family dislikes “Karen,” my sister-in-law.
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She insults and behaves superior.

She thinks relatives should monitor her kids so she can do what she wants. (If you reject, she drops the kids at the door.) She blames worry and depression for her terrible behavior.

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I think she utilizes her mental health concerns to manipulate others. My mother-in-law constantly suggests we should “turn the other cheek,” but I no longer can, especially when it comes to her insults.

I know many family members will sympathize with her, but I can no longer tolerate her verbally attacking me and others.

I need the plan to avoid losing my temper and saying something I’ll regret, but I don’t know how to answer respectfully. Ideas? — DISLIKES KY CONFLICT

DEAR DOESN’T: Do nothing without first alerting your in-laws that you have reached your limit. Say calmly, “I don’t deserve to be spoken to that way,” next time your sister-in-law is disrespectful and offensive.

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That’s it for me. Leaving.” Then do it. Your hubby should agree. And while you’re at it, have him and his family decide whether Karen’s kids are at risk, and act accordingly. I think leaving her kids on a doorstep is child abandonment.

Abby, I keep doing this every year. My spouse previously had a daughter who now has two daughters.

She has always had the sense she was somewhat deprived.
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I guarantee you, she was not.

Her maternal grandparents thought she hung the moon and showered her with everything. When her mother remarried, she asked that my husband allow her new husband to adopt her.

When she turned 18, my husband reconnected. I do my best to acknowledge holidays, birthdays, etc., for all of them. I’m tired of the non-reciprocity.

We have a friendly connection and see them frequently. She acts as if we owe her. I do everything—my hubby doesn’t care. Can I break the cycle? My nephew is too.

No acknowledgment unless compelled. My feelings are the issue. I want to be friendly, but it feels one-sided. NY ODDS

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At odds: Stepdaughter and nephew are grownups. I advise you to have a mature chat with both of them and tell them you desire a courteous connection but it appears one-sided. Turn the other cheek again and stop if they don’t respond. Be friendly and frequent.

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