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Widow Balks After MIL Demands Gifted Wedding Jewelry Back Since Son Left Her Out Of His Will

Grieving widow
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Redditor AlwaysAnonymous0322 experienced the unimaginable when they lost their husband, then their mother.

The Original Poster (OP) and her late husband were closer to her parents than to his, and complications with his side have come out of the woodwork since he passed away.

Some recent disagreements pushed the OP to subReddit “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA).

She asked:

“AITA for refusing to give back wedding gifts to my MIL after my husband passed”

She explained:

“My husband passed away about 3 years ago. We were together for 9 yrs, married for 4 yrs at the time of his passing.”

“He never had a great relationship with his parents and he was very vocal about that to all of our friends.”

“My husband & I kept our finances very private and did not share much with his parents, as my husband did not want them to be involved.”

“His parents are decently well-off and can provide for themselves.”

“We would openly share finances with my parents & during the term of our marriage, we have taken financial help from my parents when needed…”

“…but we have never asked his parents to help us out at any time.”

“My husband and I also had a home that we purchased together while we were engaged. I had some legal issues & his parents did have to sign a document as we did not have a living will.”

“They hesitated & his mom kept making snarky comments about the car I drive and shoes I buy. It was resolved eventually- but I think the process just gave me a bitter feeling.”

“His parents waited to see if their names were listed as beneficiaries for any accounts we had & after it was confirmed that they were not- they stopped contacting me.”

“Last time they spoke to me was 2 years ago.”

“I have started to see someone new over the past year & they are clearly not happy. It’s become a ‘why should she have anything from our son’ mentality. I also lost my mom about six months ago.”

“A few weeks ago, his parents called & demanded I give them all the wedding jewelry back that was received for our 2017 wedding as it is not mine and belongs to HIS MOM.”

“Nothing given from any guests or his parents during the wedding was family heirlooms or passed down jewelry that would have sentimental value.”

“They were just gifts from those who attended our wedding.”

“They did not even show up to my mother’s funeral or call me. They are also claiming that the home we had isn’t even mine as ‘their son put the down payment.’”

“Untrue as my parents had helped us put a large amount of the down payment for that home- but my husband never shared that with his parents since we never wanted to rub it in their faces.”

“They also think that their son funded everything and our entire lifestyle- which is another lie as we had built our life with money that was made by both of us, not just him.”

“In my perspective- I was married to their son, we both worked, built a life together…”

“…and any gifts given to me during my wedding or things purchased between money that their son & I made is NOT theirs.”

“His mother has been harassing and calling my family & it has been non-stop comments to the point where she questioned my upbringing that my deceased mother gave me.”

“All my family members think they are disgusting to do this to their son’s widow, but it also gets awkward as we are trying to be mindful that they lost their son.”

“My heart still goes out to them for their loss, as I can imagine they are also grieving, but I am just confused.”


Redditors weighed in by declaring:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Redditors decided:

“Time to go NO CONTACT. No kids for old mil to claim, so she has no claim on your life. There is now no reason to stay in contact.”

“If their love for you does not continue because their son died, then you would not be in the wrong to cut these people out of your life. You owe them nothing.” – ConfusedAt63

“NTA good grief your in-laws sound like a nightmare. I would get in touch with a lawyer to see if you can get a restraining order on them.”

“I’m sorry for your loss, and I hope this gets resolved quickly.” – fckinsleepless


“But why are the lines of communications still open. Block them expeditiously.”

“Plenty of people lose their children and manage to not be a**holes. You don’t have to be their emotional punching bag.” – terpischore761

“I would go NC and tell them why. Say something like ‘I really tried to keep contact with you because I thought we could share in our grief of losing your son/my husband…’”

“‘…It has been made very clear lately, that you would rather try and dismantle the life I had built with your son together. Just like you, I am grieving…’”

“‘…This is a life your son and I both contributed to together. You have it completely wrong that your son funded our life together. We were partners in all things, including finances….’”

“‘…I know you don’t have a legal leg to stand on, which is why I tried to chalk this up to your grieving. But, you have crossed a line and now, because of your actions, things must change….’”

“‘…I will be going no contact with you and blocking you on all platforms. I will also advise my family members to no longer entertain your deliberate attack on me and block you as well….’”

‘…If you try to escalate this, I will contact the police about a restraining order. I often wondered why my husband never felt close to you, his own parents….’”

“‘…Thank you for finally offering clarity on this situation. I hope you speak to a therapist and find out why you are such a spiteful and hateful person. Goodbye and good luck.’” – Bonnm42

“NTA , but I’m afraid you’re being far too kind and generous to the in-laws. These people are total psychopaths and must be blocked and discontinue harassing you.”

“You owe them nothing(obviously), and I would send a registered letter advising them to cease and desist contact ASAP.”

“Sorry this all happened. Protect yourself. These people are maniacs.” – MammothHistorical559

“NTA. They are acting disgusting. They may still be grieving, but now they are just being hateful to you.” “

Block them on all channels. See a lawyer if you want to be sure everything financial is clear of them, and go on and live your life in peace.”

“So sorry for both your losses.” – ParsimoniousSalad

“Oh hell no! Go NC now. Fellow widow for 5 years now and I went NC with my FIL bc he decided to say 3 weeks after the funeral that he wished my husband, his son, was never born.”

“(Backstory: when my MiL found out she was preggo with my husband she went to BF FIL’s house to tell him and she was told to get an abortion and leave him alone.)”

“These types of people are entitled narcissistic AHs who do not deserve any more of your energy, time or compassion.”

“We’ve experienced unimaginable loss. We don’t need any more negative energy near us. Just keep those you cherish near.”

“Don’t waste any more of your energy dealing with your former in-laws.” – Peskanov

“I’m sorry for your loss. It is time to cut all contact with in-laws. Don’t respond, don’t answer any questions.”

“If anyone asks you about what is going on or tries to weigh in, you can respond you aren’t sure what is going on with your former in-law. They seem to be confused and then say nothing else.”

“You don’t have to explain anything. You don’t have to talk to them or acknowledge them. You don’t have to give them anything back either.”

“Silence is the best response to them, confusion to others about what is happening that they feel like sticking their nose into.”

“Sounds like you are moving forward with your life, and that is good. Go have the best life you can .” – Tinkerpro

“Nta. I’m sorry for your loss. As a widow from my first marriage who went through a similar issue with a toxic former in law let me tell you…YOU were your husband’s beneficiary and legal next of kin.”

“Any gifts received as wedding gifts, anniversary gifts, birthday gifts, whatever. If it belonged to him, it now belongs to you.”

“If he had wanted anyone to receive specific items ‘back’ he could have allocated them in a will. You owe those people NOTHING. And that’s what you should give them.”

“As you said, nothing was an heirloom where they might have a slightly legit desire to ‘keep in the family’ (assuming you have no children to inherit)…”

“…also they waited 2 years to decide to make their demands. It sounds like they are just bitter evil people trying to hurt and extend your grief.”

“You have the right to be happy! Your new relationship is your business and does not change a thing about the love you had for your husband or your rights to your inheritance.”

“Tell them to go pound salt and then cut contact with them.” – Tizzery


We hope this grieving mother can find some peace, and it likely wouldn’t come from jewelry.

Written by B. Miller

B. is a creative multihyphenate who enjoys the power and versatility of the written word. She enjoys hiking, great food and drinks, traveling, and vulnerable conversation. Raised below the Mason Dixon, thriving above it. (she/her)