I've always thought that my husband was wonderful but lately when I look at him I marvel. The man really is a walking miracle. My father-in-law was an extreme narcissist. He was the corpse at every funeral and the bride at every wedding. He was the sun and anyone who didn't want to revolve around him forever was in trouble. He was affectionate with his sons when they were little but changed when they became teenagers. Perhaps it was because he couldn't cope with them growing up. Maybe something bad happened elsewhere in his life and that is what made him mean. Perhaps he was afraid. As the boys grew, he may have felt like an old lion who had to defend his territory. We'll never know. At any rate, Rocky made it out of that household being sane, decent and kind. My father-in-law never got over Rocky leaving home and his "humorous" tongue was so toxic that the only way for Rocky to deal with him without getting emotionally torn up every time we visited was to severely limit contact and then to only talk about safe things like football.
My mother-in-law simply adored her husband. He could do no wrong. If he said the sky was green. She would agree and get angry at anyone who said otherwise. Now that she is gone, Rocky is left with only his brother and sadly, it is now obvious that while Rocky got away, "Clipper," never really did. When I look at him, it's like seeing a 6 foot tall marionette with no visible strings.
Eternal rest grant unto my in-laws Oh Lord. Let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace.