How Far Does A Parent Have To Go Before You Kick Them Out Of Your Life?

Cutting off or going no-contact with a close family member is one of the toughest decisions a person will ever have to make – and when that family member is a parent, the choice can feel darn near impossible.

Our mothers have a hold over us that’s stronger than almost anyone else’s, but as this man found out the hard way, sometimes they do push us far enough that the only choice we can make is to step away.

OP and his wife recently bought their first home together and made sure that it was styled and remodeled the way they wanted it for themselves.

When they found themselves with plans to leave town, they asked OP’s mother to house and dog sit even though OP’s relationship with her had been rocky in the past.

Last week, my wife & I traveled to a music festival for about 5-6 days. I hired my Mom (she needed the money, I needed a dogsitter) to take care of things while we were away for an agreed upon price.

We: cleaned the house prior to leaving, left her with strict instructions for what to do with our Great Dane, stocked the fridge, wrote the wifi and desktop passwords down for her, and pre-paid her so she’d have some money.

They returned home to find rather baffling and frankly infuriating changes had been made to their home – including some that were semi-permanent – and to the upsetting reality that their dog hadn’t been well-cared for while they were away.

Fast forward to yesterday, we arrived to find lots of things had been done to our home and it sent me into a fit. My wife and I are 30-somethings who just bought our very first house together, and it was bought remodeled and to our likings. The list is as followed:

Every wall in the house had been painted with a color that did not match our normal paint scheme. The job was also incomplete and patchy in most areas. The previous paint was totally fine, and only seven months old!

Missing electrical outlet covers. Still don’t know why.
100+ cigarette butts in my rose potted-plant out front.
Items missing / moved.
Pictures hung / holes in walls. We did not intend on hanging anything yet until we decided on where we wanted things.
a SHOP light was ran over the kitchen table and tacked to the wall.
Six foot ladder laid on vinyl records, destroying three of them in the process.
Spare house key made by my mom’s boyfriend. Now I feel like I must change my locks.
Indoor dog bed thrown in the mud.
Duct tape found over the motion detectors and Ring doorbell.

Not to mention the whole reason I needed her in the first place: the dog! He’d been left out back seemingly the entire time (he sleeps indoors and comes in frequently for heat breaks), barely fed, and his dog bed is caked in mud and rain and I feel it necessary to toss in the garbage now.

He lost his cool but his mother refused to take responsibility or apologize for her actions. His wife doesn’t want her back in the house, and honestly, it’s hard for him to blame her.

Naturally, I lost my head and my cool. I immediately started yelling about the fact that this is NOT THEIR HOME. It was not okay for them to treat our home like it was theirs, doing whatever flight-or-fancy entered their brains. I almost suspect a drug binger; that’s the only thing I can rationalize their thought processes with.

The entire time, my mother refused to accept responsibility for the actions, began to cry, and called me “ungrateful”. I feel like I’m being gaslit by my own mother for being upset. Our relationship is now tarnished even further than it was, and my wife doesn’t want her back here.

OP feels as if things will never be ok between him and his mom again but he’s struggling with having shouted at her and also cutting off contact with his own mother.

The scenario has played in my mind countless times and I feel completely awful about yelling at her, but it’s the complete lack of accepting responsibility on her part that has me fuming, on top of acting like nothing was even amiss. Am I the asshole here? Or was I justified in my right to be upset?

Help me see clearly, Reddit! Thanks 🙂

TLDR: OP hires mother to house/dogsit, OP comes back to modified house. OP snaps.

Let’s see whether or not Reddit can convince him that sometimes it’s for the best.

Not only does the top commenter think OP was right to be upset, but they think he should take legal action as well.

Image Credit: Reddit

And if OP can’t stomach suing his own mother there are always other options.

Image Credit: Reddit

The dog bit definitely pushed plenty of commenters over the edge.

Image Credit: Reddit

What a nightmare all the way around.

Image Credit: Reddit

There’s surely more to this story but I’m not sure any of us are ready to hear it.

His update is sad but probably necessary; I hope he makes peace with the situation sooner rather than later.

UPDATE: Have completely ghosted my mom and blocked her cell number. I have changed the locks and begun the process of fixing my home out of pocket. I have not found any drug related items.. yet. My dog is back to his chipper self and is scheduled for a veterinarian visit tomorrow. I really appreciate everyone’s support just pouring over this post. I will reply as much as possible! Thanks 🙂

UPDATE #2: We’ve been doing inventory at home and it seems we are both missing a rather large number of items. I can no longer feel like I should just burden myself with the financial stress, and therefore we’re moving forward with a police report and then charges to follow. My mother still hadn’t responded to my texts prior to blocking her and hadn’t offered any sort of resolution or shown remorse for her/their actions. So I have officially turned my back on her and will remain in a permanent state of no-contact.

UPDATE #3: Police report filed. Tomorrow or Friday our home insurance will receive the report and act accordingly, hopefully.

I honestly wish that no one ever had to make this call in their life. It’s just not fair.

How would you have advised this man if he was your friend or partner? Drop your best advice in the comments!