She Moved To A New State, But When Her Mother-In-Law Demanded She Return All Her Housewarming Gifts, She Was Shocked

A woman said that sixteen years ago, her mother-in-law gave her some beautiful artwork and furniture for her home. Then she moved, and to her surprise, her mother-in-law wanted it all back. The woman explains the background of this little family drama.

They moved to a new place

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“My husband (50m) and I (42f) recently moved to a new state, primarily since our younger son’s celiac is easier to manage in a more liberal-leaning area,” said the woman. They found the perfect house quickly and moved in within a few months.

They shared the news 

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The woman’s husband called his mother to share the news. And neither he nor his wife could have predicted her reaction. Instead of “Congratulations on your new home” or “I’ll miss you,” the mother-in-law demanded they return all the stuff she’d given them.

She wanted everything back

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And that included some furniture she’d given them as a housewarming gift over 16 years ago. “She worked for some time as an art/antiques dealer and gave us some lovely pieces,” shared the woman. “Wall art, small furniture pieces, and a few small sculptures.”

The woman thought the art was hers 

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The woman was confused. She presumed the artwork was a gift. “Nothing was ever said about these items, and I grew to love them and have lots of special memories of having them in my home,” she said. “All this time, I thought they were ours.”

They were all loaned

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But they weren’t. As far as the mother-in-law was concerned, all the pieces were on a long-term loan, and now she was calling it in. “For the first time, I’m informed that they were on loan and very expensive,” shared the surprised woman. “News to me! They’ve been well-loved in a house with small kids. And she knew it.”

She’d loaned money to her mother-in-law 

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She decided to do some accounting of her own. “I pointed out to my husband that we’ve ‘loaned’ his mother thousands of dollars over the years. We’ve also been paying for her mobile phone,” she said.

It was only supposed to be temporary 

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Her mother-in-law had promised to pay the difference for the mobile phone bill but never did. The woman has been picking up the tab for over ten years now.

Her mother-in-law caused money problems

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Her mother-in-law had money issues due to illness and not being able to work. Still, she refused to downsize her home and went to her son and his wife when money was short.

She said it wasn’t fair 

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She laid all this out to her husband. She told him that his mother was out of line and that trying to take the pieces back wasn’t right.

He disagreed

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But her husband didn’t see it that way. Instead, he seemed to be on his mother’s side. “My husband thinks it’s hers, so it’s only right to give it back,” explained the woman. “I’m told the fact they don’t honor loans to us is ‘different.'”

She asked the internet

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That didn’t seem right to her. So she asked the internet for its opinion, posting the big question, “Am I a jerk for not wanting to give up these pieces?”

The internet answered her back 

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“Your husband is the real jerk here,” thinks one person. “How did he forget to mention that you were borrowing furniture/art/whatever?”

“Not the jerk,” echoed another person. “I would tell her that since you and your husband have ‘loaned’ her thousands of dollars over the years, which was never repaid, that she should consider it as payment for the items which she ‘loaned’ to you both 16 years ago. Chances are she won’t like it, but unless she comes up with the repayment, I don’t see any reason to return anything.”

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