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To not know how to help my friend ? Out of my depth

(24 Posts)
notgivingin789 Wed 24-May-17 22:29:44

Where oh where do I begin with this story. My friend knows I'm posting this and I'm technically posting on this on her behalf. But I just don't know what to do .

During my time at University, I met this girl ( my friend) which we shared a lot in common with, we're going through similar stuff in our lives, similar interests . All in all, we jelled really well and she became one of my very best friends, she has honestly been my rock with all the stuff I was going through my abusive ex, by my side when my DS was diagnosed with SEN. She is has just been an amazing person.

In her current situation, I just don't know how to help her sad. She's been with her current BF for many years ( now husband), he has cheated on her multiple of times, was very rude to her... just not a very nice person. Though the husband's mother is worse ! During our time at University, the mother in law will continuously ask money from my friend, my friend will "loan" the MIL a few hundred quid there from her student loan, she even " lent" her 2 grand ( the MIL has never paid her back !) one time. I pleaded with my friend to stop doing this but she felt like she had a duty to the MIL.

My friend sadly had MC during our final year at Uni, she was very distraught , I supported her through this. This was round the period that the Bf (not husband) and the MIL was pressuring my friend to get married to her son (bf now husband). The MIL used her MC against her and told her that "she committed sin and it will be better for her son and her to get married". I pleaded with my friend to not do this, God knows I begged her not to, the husbands family were horrible to her, the husband just smokes weed all day, plays video games, spends his money frivolously, talk to other women. He just wasn't husband material.

Though my friend went against this, she left her family home to be to stay with her husbands family. The MIL suddenly got them married (without them knowing they were going to get married - very long story). The MIL made my friend cut off from her family members, she wasn't allowed to speak to her mum, sister, father, anyone ! The MIL threatened that if she did she will get her and the husband divorce. As my friend loves her husband so much, she obliged.

Her coming to University was difficult as the MIL also forbid her to attend, through fear of her contacting her family but she allowed her eventually. As you can imagine my friend was depressed and the husband wasn't helping too. Not long after, she was pregnant, she was very happy but in my head I was devastated for her, I knew she wouldn't leave him and that family any time soon and things were going to worse and they did .

Whilst pregnant she had to cook and clean, she wasn't allowed to go out. ( her mum commands). The husband is scared of his mum so wouldn't tell her off otherwise. My friend was coming into uni exhausted, sick, crying. I tried to help her and advice her, I told her there was more to life than this but she couldn't let go... she didn't want to let go of her first boyfriend she has been with so many years. Plus I think the was secretly hoping that one the baby arrives, then all will be ok. Due to all the stress above she wasn't able to complete her degree in the end.

Long story short, my friend had the baby, the MIL is not so controlling anymore, she has even told my friend that she has regretted them getting married. My friend is in contact with her family but she is depressed, she still has to cook and clean for 5 people and look after her child too, the MIL helps occasionally, the husband is at work but it's too much for her. The husband has started becoming physically abusive towards her, my friend suspects his speaking to other women. He doesn't help it much with the baby, mainly on drugs (weed), wastes money, just still the same.

I've advice my friend countless of times, told her about organisations spoke to her family. I told her not to end up like I was as I too found it very difficult to leave my abusive ex. She says she will leave but when something "good happens" (e.g. The MIL is nice to her, the husband is in a good mood or whatever) she backs out and stays. The sad thing is, she is only 24. I don't know what to do. Can anyone advice ??

Pettywoman Wed 24-May-17 22:39:13

Get this thread moved to Relationships for good advice for a start. Talk to Women's Aid or better still get her to so at least she knows what support is out there if she ever needs it. It sounds like she isn't ready to leave him which is frustrating and difficult for you as a friend who wants to help. You can only hang in there and hope you can support her if she does make a move.

notgivingin789 Wed 24-May-17 22:41:54

Thanks, I've asked MQ to move this thread to relationships.

JamPasty Wed 24-May-17 22:42:51

Tell her to call Women's Aid, and do the Freedom Programme.
Also ask her, if she had a cup of tea, and someone put a spoonful of shit in it, would she drink it? Of course not. Yet that is what she is doing by staying with her husband, only in this case it's a whole mug full of shit and one spoonful of tea. Cups of tea, like marriages, should have no shit in them at all. Maybe seeing it like that might help her see her arse of a husband for what he is (ie an arse)

swarley Wed 24-May-17 22:53:39

Unfortunately, you can't really help someone who won't help themselves. I know this is most likely very frustrating and you desperately want to help your friend, but honestly, if she sees it for what it is and still isn't doing anything to leave, then its out of your hands sad.

All i could really advise is that you do all you can to let her know that she does deserve better.. or more that this is not the life her or her child deserves.

Jakeyboy1 Wed 24-May-17 23:24:17

Are you in the U.K.? Are you sure they are legally married? You cannot be married in the U.K. Without an interview and discussion several weeks before for the registrar/celebrant to ascertain you understand what you are doing and that you are doing it of your own free will.

notgivingin789 Wed 24-May-17 23:31:15

jakey they are not legally married but are married under Islam. They are hoping to get legally married soon in the UK.

Jakeyboy1 Wed 24-May-17 23:32:58

Well they aren't legally married then. She needs to get out fast not consider making it legal to an abusive loser.

ChazsBrilliantAttitude Wed 24-May-17 23:38:08

Is there cultural pressure for her to stay with her husband no matter what? Would it help her to look at how a husband is expected to behave under Islam for her to see that her marriage is not working because he is not behaving properly. Further, she is not responsible for his behaviour, she cannot fix him or guide him because he is an adult who is making bad choices.

LittleKiwi Wed 24-May-17 23:42:14

If you share her religion, I would let her know that you believe she is a good person and that god will love her whatever happens with her marriage. Might give her the freedom and peace of mind to think about what's going on more critically. Other than that, you can only support her and be there for her. It's her life.

notgivingin789 Wed 24-May-17 23:44:02

We don't have the same religion and I don't think it's culturally that she wants to stay in the marriage. I think it's more due to the fact that she lives her husband so much and doesn't want to let him go.

KC225 Wed 24-May-17 23:50:10

What did her family say when you contacted rhem. Would she be able to return to her family?

notgivingin789 Wed 24-May-17 23:56:46

The family have begged her to come back, but she is conflicted as coming back to her family means leaving her husband.

KC225 Wed 24-May-17 23:59:42

How about suggesting she visit them with the baby and stay for a week or so. That is perfectly acceptable. Maybe away from the situation would make her feel stronger.

Hissy Thu 25-May-17 00:01:49

No good will ever come of contact with him and his family.

She needs to go home to her family and leave him behind

Its not love, its fear, its his grooming of her. She is clearly very vulnerable to abuse.

She's in the wrong relationship with the wrong man if she's this vulnerable.

notgivingin789 Thu 25-May-17 00:05:59

Thank you KC I will suggest that. But no way I'm God's earth would the MIL allow that and sadly my friend would oblige.

Valentine2 Thu 25-May-17 00:08:49

Hills>>>>> That way. Grab her hand and GO!

BeeThirtythree Thu 25-May-17 00:29:25

If they have only had a nikah ceremony and no civil ceremony then she can leave. The husband is not acting in any Islamic way by not providing, not sharing childcare etc aside from the smoking weed and roving eye. The Mil is unreasonable and putting culture before sense! Your friend needs her family and maybe needs to take her DC and spend a week or so with family to think in a clear environment! She'd have support with her DC I assume from family and is quite young, so completing studies may broaden horizons. You are a good friend for helping her OP

Framboise18 Thu 25-May-17 00:38:12

I had an Islamic friend who had a little similarity to your situation. She needs to get the marriage annulled by the husband for it to be recognised under Islamic law please don't quote me on this as this was a very long time ago. It's gruelling but she needs to get out of there if not for herself for her child

Tapandgo Thu 25-May-17 00:38:39

It's not a legal marriage - and it sounds like she's married his mum!
She needs to get the advice suggested earlier up thread - but she needs to want to get out of this mess herself, or it's just another coercion.

notanevilstepmother Thu 25-May-17 03:54:48 may be able to help. Also

She may not be ready to leave at the moment, but it is possible for the marriage to be ended, she didn't give her consent and he isn't being a good husband.

YetAnotherBeckyMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 25-May-17 08:59:42

Hi OP, we're just moving this over to Relationships now, at your request.

notgivingin789 Thu 25-May-17 09:47:22

I doubt she will end her marriage sadly sad.

ghanchi Sat 29-Jul-17 22:19:41

This is a sad story but this is where east and west clash. Today most couples who marry do not live with there in-laws, they would live separately and make their own way in the world. It does not mean cutting themselves off from both families.
As the story has unfolded, she needs to make a decision of amicable separation as per the teachings laid out in Islam making sure that the child who is the most important person is protected.
Regardless of what happens going forward, the child must have access to both parents (shared parenting).

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