Two families coming together is supposed to be such a happy occasion, but a lot of people sure do have their share of tough in-law stories.
Most of them admittedly don’t involve curses, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor TA191210 decided to give her future mother-in-law a taste of her own medicine when she refused to return the future bride’s engagement ring.
But after her mother-in-law tried to blame her for a fake curse, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if she took it too far.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for telling my soon-to-be MIL (Mother-in-Law) that my engagement ring is cursed?”
The OP struggled with her mother-in-law.
“I ([Female] 26) just got engaged. My soon-to-be MIL is a nightmare.”
“We are currently renovating a part of our place and she has been lent a key in the meantime because she keeps coming over uninvited under the guise of ‘helping’ clean up, but she really just likes to snoop and interfere.”
Then there was an issue with the OP’s engagement ring.
“I do martial arts and take my engagement ring off before class.”
“I came home from an afternoon class one day and my engagement ring was not in the jewelry dish that I usually leave it in.”
“I asked her about it and she told me that she’d taken it to a jeweler to get it cleaned.”
“She looked super smug about it and when I asked which jeweler, she pretended she couldn’t remember.”
“I didn’t want to give her the satisfaction of having a reaction to it so I just let it slide for a couple of days.”
The OP decided to retaliate, in a way.
“A couple of days pass and I ask her about it again and she’s super vague, still pretending she can’t remember which jeweler and saying she’s too busy to go pick it up anytime soon.”
“So I said, ‘Wow, I really feel for that jeweler… hope nothing happens to her.'”
“She asked what I meant, and I told her that my superstitious Brazilian grandmother had performed some traditional ritual on it that’s usually known to curse anyone who takes or handles the ring other than the owner.”
“She looked uneasy and asked me a couple more questions about this ritual, and I made some story up about how my mother’s ring had been taken by a burglar who was crushed by a pillar of cement on his way out of the house.”
“(I totally made this entire ritual up and I do have a Brazilian grandmother but obviously, she did not do some ritual to my ring.)”
“The next day, my fiancé told me while I was out that she was there to clean up a bit… Lo and behold, I get home (she had already left) and find my ring where I had left it. It didn’t look any cleaner than it had before.”
Then the angry calls started to come in.
“A week later, I received an abusive call from her, saying she’d been in a minor car accident and she was blaming me and my ‘witch doctor’ grandmother, saying she was now cursed for having touched it.”
“I passed the phone to my fiancé who tried to calm her down, but she was hysterical.”
“I told my fiancée what I had told her, and he scolded me a bit because we both know how she is and I should have known she’d react this sort of way.”
“It’s been a further week since then and she refuses to talk to me and keeps slandering me to my fiancé.”
“Overall he sort of recognizes how ridiculous she’s being, but the drama of the situation is making me wonder if the whole curse tale was taking it a bit too far.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some thought the grandmother should be in on it.
“She wanted to have OP stress out about the ring, go to her fiance, then MIL could badmouth OP to him and say she’s no good for her fiance.”
“And if OP told her fiance that MIL took it, then MIL could gaslight girl boss it (‘I have no idea why she thinks I took it!,’ ‘She always blames me and is pulling our family apart!’ ‘OP really thinks that I would take her ring? Who would do something like that?’).”
“Seriously, it’s that simple. Based on OP’s story that’s her goal. She’s trying to stir up hostility between OP and her fiance.”
“This joke was brilliant. NTA. OP I’d let your grandma know what you said, so she’s aware in case there is some sort of drama at weddings or such.”
“And giving out a small ritual for MIL to complete is perfect and genius. Then MIL can feel resolved, but definitely change the locks and you and your fiance need to have a serious talk with MIL.”
“MIL is being rude, hostile, manipulative, and snooping about to find some reason for the marriage to fail.” – StormyAurora
“If grandma is willing to do a throwaway line of, ‘Oh, you think the hex I put on the ring is bad? Tsk. Wait until you find out what meddling with my family does.’ (Or something similar)” – Djhinnwe
“MIL sounds insufferable if she thinks pulling shit like this is ok. So, I’d probably go the opposite route and get grandma in on it. Just have her coldly stare at MIL at random intervals.”
“And I think her taking the ring was just some sort of misguided power play on her part. There would be no positive resolution on the MIL’s part, since she admitted to taking it.”
“Maybe if she had said that she didn’t know anything, she could try to manipulate her son to believe OP didn’t care enough and lost it.”
“Totally agree with the NTA, and also… Change the locks ASAP. Don’t allow thieves free access.” – NobodysBabyDaddy
On a more serious note, others said the OP had a fiancé problem.
“NTA. OP you have more than just a MIL problem. The bigger one is your fiancé. He scolded you, not her for stealing your ring.”
“If he says you know how she gets, why does she even have a key to begin with? He makes excuses for her and scolds you. With a MIL like this, NC (no contact) is the only way.” – Mera1506
“Yo, my marriage almost failed because of in-law constant pestering like this (we had to completely rebuild after we realized we’d been played against each other for over a year).”
“I strongly advise you get on the same page with your fiance ASAP or this idiot of a MIL will turn into a f**king nightmare. Either be absolutely on the same page or don’t even bother marrying.” – Juliotorini
“I would put the wedding on hold until the fiancé shapes up and puts a leash on his mother (and if he is not willing to do that, then look for a better fiancé who is not ok with his mom using me as her doormat / emotional-punching bag).”
“Because this will only get worse after the wedding, especially if OP and fiancé want kids.”
“She is a textbook example of a monster-in-law. If I were OP, I would make it clear that unless fiancé dearest finds his spine and stands up to her and puts an end to her nonsense, toxic /abusive behavior towards OP there’s no wedding. Fiancé is enabling his mom.”
“I agree that OP has a fiancé problem. The only reason she has a MIL problem is because the fiancé didn’t do anything to stop MIL, if he stood up to his mom and enforced boundaries, cut toxicity out, then there wouldn’t be a MIL problem now.”
“NTA. OP get your ring checked out and change the locks!” – Cute-Shine-1701
Some also suggested how to “reverse” the curse.
“Why not find out why she took the ring. Say making amends negates the curse.” – captains2012
“You can just tell her the curse only lasts while they HAVE the ring. Also, point out her jeweler didn’t do a very good job of cleaning the ring and be oh so concerned that they ripped her off.”
“(But as other people implied, it might be worth taking it to a jeweler to make sure she didn’t swap stones out or something.)” – Piebandit
“I think taking the superstition further (since it worked) is brilliant! I would personally take advantage of this by saying that the ring’s curse is lifelong but people who LOVE you and treat you well are immune.”
“The curse is designed that way so that your husband for example doesn’t suffer by picking it up accidentally. Maybe this will force her to treat you better?!” – lellyla
After receiving feedback, the OP shared an update:
“Fiancé and I have had a big chat, and he’s admitted he has to step up when it comes to his mother.”
“He retrieved her key an hour ago, and he told her not to worry about the curse, because it would have no effect on anyone who touched it without malicious intent… A big thank you to the commenters who suggested that absolutely gold approach.”
Though the OP thought she might have gone too far, the subReddit disagreed. Many of them thought the curse prank was hilarious, but many also thought that the curse opened the door for some important conversations.
This would be a unique opportunity for the OP’s future husband to approach his mother with new boundaries, and it might even teach the mother-in-law to think twice before doing something unkind in the future.