Ella (40): I was held back by my mother-in-law after my husband’s death. I had to live like a nun

You’ll never be ready for a loved one’s death. When a situation like that comes, it pushes even the strongest of us down on our knees. Ella sent us an email with a story describing not only the terrible pain from a loss of a beloved husband, but also her mother-in-law’s efforts to make her stay in celibacy.

The article was based on a reader’s story. The photographs are for illustrative purposes only and the names of the persons have been changed at the reader’s request.

Her husband knew he would die

“My husband had cancer and many metastases in his body, “those are the first words of Ella’s email. She then continues to say that his illness had been discovered too late. By that time, he had metastases on his lungs, spine and some even in his head.

“He knew that he would die. The doctors were giving him just a few months to live and even that was not certain. The end could’ve come any second, so we spent his last months in everyday fear that it’s his last day. He died in his sleep just a few days before his 45th birthday,” writes Ella.

My mother-in-law decided to keep me on a short leash

“My husband’s death hurt me deeply. Although we had known about it for a few months, it was impossible to prepare for it. All of us had hard time dealing with it and so did my mother-in-law. She had a nervous breakdown after her son passed away.”

Ella then writes that she offered her mother-in-law to live with her. She was ill and Ella thought it would be good if someone looked after her. What she didn’t know was that she would soon regret this choice. When her mother-in-law got out of the shock, she decided to keep her daughter-in-law away from all men.

She wouldn’t let me date other men

Ella’s story continues describing the hard life under her mother-in-law’s supervision. She believed that Patra has to keep mourning and has no right to find new love. That’s why she wouldn’t let her go on dates and kept pushing men away from her for years.

„According to my mother-in-law, I didn’t have the right to fall in love again, even after two years. She kept telling me that I’ve lost the love of my life and that it would be disrespectful if I found a replacement,“ says Ella.

„But I felt stronger and stronger desire for someone to stay by my side. My mother-in-law had decided that I’ll live like a nun though,” she writes.

She found the strength to resist after five years

Years have passed and Ella was still kept short. She couldn’t meet any men. Every time she tried to do so her mother-in-law began blaming her for never loving her son if she is able to do this to him.

For five long years Ella lived alone and could not even look at another man. „It’s been five years since my husband’s death. I’m not going to lie, I still feel some pain from the loss, but I know that I’m ready for a new relationship. And I believe that my husband wouldn’t want me to stay alone for the rest of my life.


„That’s why I have finally decided to resist and began living my life the way I wanted. I have a boyfriend who I’m happy with. We aren’t rushing anywhere,“ says Ella

„But I’m sure she will never forgive me and will forever take it as a betrayal,“ those are the last words of Ella’s email. We can only wish her good luck.

Author: Nicole Grease

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