HomeFamilyWoman Exploits Passive-Aggressive $500 Tattoo Removal Gift From Mother-in-Law

Woman Exploits Passive-Aggressive $500 Tattoo Removal Gift From Mother-in-Law


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Spend enough time on Reddit message boards like r/AITA (Am I the A**hole?) and you’ll see some folks behaving reprehensibly, for sure. But few subreddits have quite the loaded, bitter passive-aggressiveness of the actions chronicles on r/JUSTNOMIL, which bills itself as “Support for those with nasty, cruel, toxic, abusive MILs & moms.”

Disclaimer: This writer would like to note that he only visits this particular subreddit in his capacity as a gift-related journalist. He has no need for it personally, and would like to emphatically state that he has no issues whatsoever with his s/o’s family. He cannot stress enough how much he doesn’t want an angry phone call about this. He does not want to sleep at his desk tonight.

One Redditor recently offered up a story on the subreddit about a particularly petty gift from a mother-in-law, but for as much as one MIL’s actions might irk you, the poster’s update might restore a little bit of your faith in humanity.

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Now, fair warning, this post does begin with the Redditor acknowledging that there is an age-gap between her and her husband (he 43, she 31), which in addition to making her the enemy of that weirdly puritanical side of TikTok, also means her mother-in-law is fairly dismissive of her. Of her treatment from her husband’s mother, the poster says she “…has always greatly disapproved and likes to talk to me like I am a rebellious teenager instead of her son’s life partner.” A major point of contention for the MIL? Her daughter-in-law’s tattoos.

Woman Exploits Passive-Aggressive $500 Tattoo Removal Gift From Mother-in-Law

The mother-in-law had made apparently disparaging comments about the tattoos in the past, and the poster’s husband has asked her to drop it. Well, instead, the MIL dropped a major hint during the poster’s birthday dinner three years ago. Arriving at the dinner, the MIL handed the poster an envelope, insisting she open it in her presence:

“Inside was a card and a gift certificate to a local tattoo removal business for $500. I was confused and asked her what this was for. She said that since I was a married woman now and planning to have kids, she assumed I would want my tattoos removed. Both my husband and I were kind of taken aback and stunned. I half heartedly thanked her and the party continued. Later, my husband called her and told her off. He insisted she take it back and get her money back. She absolutely refused and insisted I would want it someday.”

Originally, the Reddit post concluded with the writer noting that she’d left the certificate in a drawer and got three more tattoos during the past three years instead.

But after some thought, and some surprisingly positive internet comments, they found a better solution:
“I actually have a friend who is the director of a restorative justice organization. I asked her if she had any clients with hate symbols they would like removed and it turns out she works with a guy who has a swastika on his arm that he hides every day because he is so ashamed. This is particularly significant and powerful for me because I’m Jewish. Anyway, I am dropping it off today and I’m really pleased that something that started as a disrespectful slight from my mother in law turned into this.”

It just goes to show that there’s no gift so petty or crappy that it can’t be spun into something good.

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