We’ve all heard the cliche about unreasonable mothers-in-law who make their kids’ lives intolerable. In truth, any member of a family can put a strain on relations with their negative behavior. Should they just put up with it or fight back?
In this story, a troublesome daughter-in-law puts her family’s tolerance to the test.
A married couple lived in Inner Mongolia. They didn’t have a lot of money, but tried their best to make ends meet. Their son and his wife had both lost their jobs, so to help them out, the parents invited the young couple to have dinner with them each night.
Because of the family’s difficult financial situation, the meals were basic and lacked variety. The daughter-in-law wasn’t happy about this.
“Why are we eating the same thing day after day?” she complained one night, according to Minghui.org.
Her father-in-law was upset when he heard her remark, and replied curtly: “We also eat the same food we serve you. If you don’t like it, you can buy your own food if you can come up with the money.”
These sorts of small arguments happened frequently. Sometimes they would get so heated she would storm out, slamming the door as she left.
Two years later, the daughter-in-law gave birth to a baby girl. The grandparents were delighted—but the daughter-in-law refused to let them visit her. She did, however, expect the grandparents to do the baby’s laundry.
After a few years, the daughter-in-law eventually realized that she had no choice but to ask the grandparents for help with child care, but she didn’t want to admit it. She sent her husband to ask them if they would drop off and pick up her daughter from school every day. The grandparents agreed.
Still she wasn’t grateful for the couple’s help. She continued to be rude and squabble with them.
Throughout all of this, the parents-in-law tried their best not to fight with their daughter-in-law and just brush off her bad behavior, in the hope of finding some sort of resolution. But it was certainly challenging.
They sometimes wondered if they had done something terrible to her in a previous life to warrant the treatment they were getting.
“We must have owed her big time!” the mother-in-law said.
They took solace in the fact that the daughter-in-law’s parents weren’t treated much better. Together they sympathized with each other.
They also found comfort in their faith, a Chinese self-improvement practice called Falun Dafa, which is based on the principles of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance.
The couple were certainly being tested on whether they could adhere to the latter two principles!
The mother-in-law didn’t want to give up on her daughter-in-law. She kept trying to win her over through small acts of kindness.
When she came to visit, she always prepared food for her and took the initiative to talk to her in a friendly way.
The father-in-law, however, found it increasingly difficult. He often got angry and fought with his daughter-in-law. Finally, the stress of it all got too much for him and he became sick.
But then, a miracle happened! After years of her mother-in-law’s consistent compassion and kindness, the daughter-in-law finally recognized the error of her ways.
She visited her parents-in-law and told them, “I did wrong. I won’t do anything to upset you again. From now on, I’ll try my best to respect and honor you to make up for my past misdeeds.”
And she lived up to her word, becoming thoughtful and kind towards her parents-in-law.
Sadly, her father-in-law soon passed away. The daughter-in-law blamed herself for his death.
“He died because I upset him too much. If I had not constantly made him so angry, he wouldn’t have gotten sick and left us so early,” she said while weeping.
The mother-in-law, though mourning the loss of her husband, still extended compassion to her daughter-in-law. She comforted her and told her that she wasn’t to blame.
Now, all the bitterness and fighting is in the past—all thanks to the power of tolerance and compassion, and a steadfast belief in the power to change things for the better.