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Verbal abuse all the time. It feels like father's only language. Tone laced with derision, he berates mom for moving her kindle charger. She goes silent and shuffles over to her favourite chair.

I step in between them. But I don't face him; I look at her with pure love. I don't even have a plan--I just need to be in between them. Father can't hurt her anymore if he's speaking to my back.

I can understand he doesn't want her to lose the charger. She loves her kindle, it's her favourite way to escape. His condescension, though. It's awful and ugly. He talks to her like she's stupid and nothing more than a naughty child.

'Mom, let me see your kindle.'

Glassy eyed, she hands it over.

Father huffs. 'What are you doing?'

I take a deep breath and tap the top of the screen. The battery life reads 99%, and I have my excuse for moving between them.

'The battery is pretty much full. It shouldn't be plugged in all the time, anyway. Just monitor it and plug it in when it gets to 15% or less.'

Husband comes into the family room. I walk over to him, tears gathering in my eyes.

'I don't want to leave her alone with him," I whisper.

His eyes shine with compassion.

The movers called, we leave tomorrow. For years and years, we begged mom to live with us. She used to stay for months. She found every excuse to come be in our home. But her MCI diagnosis means father has such a tight grip on her now.

Daughter follows us to our bedroom. Her lips tremble and shoulders slump.

'I don't want to leave grandma alone with grandpa.'

I never told daughter the story of when I moved out of the family home for good. How mom cried. Father said it was from watching her youngest leave. But she'd whispered dreadful words to me earlier that day.

'How can you leave me alone with that man?'

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Farrah Khan Al-Mousawi
Farrah Khan Al-Mousawi
Dec 10, 2021

Your poor mum. But I’m so glad you got out ❤️

Mar 04, 2022
Replying to

I have more to report in my next blog 😞

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