I got pretty lucky in the shviger department. She did once mention that sinners (like her son and I) were all going to burn in hell, and we are not without our occasional skirmishes over my dress or the choices her son and I make, but overall she is sweet, generous, caring and always has kukush cake on hand when I visit.
Not everyone gets so lucky. An email from a woman to her stepson’s fiancee that recently went viral, includes the following proclamations from the shviger-to-be:
- “Your behaviour on your visit to Devon during April was staggering in its uncouthness and lack of grace.”
- “If you want to be accepted by the wider Bourne family I suggest you take some guidance from experts with utmost haste.”
- “You do not take additional helpings without being invited to by your host.”
There’s got to be a Jackie Mason joke in there somewhere…
For people wrestling with leaving/who have already left the tight-knit religious world, in-laws can be double the stress or a second chance – either another source of judgement and pressure or an alternative family when one’s own is failing in their familial duties.
I’m particularly curious about those who married outside the religious community – do you see your in-laws as welcome replacement for family who may have spurned you?
And, on a totally different note, just to spread some joy and cureness in this occasionally dark and frustrating world:
I’m trying to decide if they look more like Dr. Seussian creations or a bunch of gentle old Chasidish men.Printable Version