Melissa is pregnant with twins, and to make her life easier, she invites her mother-in-law to stay with her and her husband, Harry. But when Penny adds a potentially harmful ingredient to the food, the couple has no choice but to send Penny packing.


It’s my first pregnancy, and I’m having twins. It’s been a pretty rough pregnancy so far because I have a petite figure, so my body is taking quite the beating.

My husband, Harry, has been of immense help, but he’s been working a lot recently. So, we invited his mother, Penny, to come and stay with us.

“I know you’re not exactly excited to have her around, Mel,” Harry said.

“But she’ll help us around the house. As the doctor suggested, you can put your feet up and take it easy.”

Pregnant woman holding her belly | Source: Unsplash

Pregnant woman holding her belly | Source: Unsplash

I admit, I wouldn’t say I liked the idea of having Penny over. That said, the fact that she would be around to help sounded appealing.


So, Penny moved in.

“I’ll just stay until the twins are born,” she said, making me a salad one day. “Then I’ll leave you and Harry to your babies.”

Then, last week, I needed to go for my checkup, and Harry couldn’t get out of a meeting to come along.

Salad in a bowl | Source: Unsplash

Salad in a bowl | Source: Unsplash

“I’m sorry, love,” he said as he was getting ready to leave. “Take Mom with you, let her drive. And call me straight after.”

He massaged my feet to soften the blow.

Anyway, we went to the doctor’s, and everything looked good.

“These babies have strong heartbeats! You’re doing well, Mel.”


Naturally, my mother-in-law chimed in at that moment.

“But Doctor,” she said. “Mel has been lethargic. She has no energy and doesn’t do much.”

“That’s perfectly normal, and her body has to adapt to making room for two babies. You must rest, Mel. And eat proper food — even if you have junk food cravings, eat a proper diet of nourishing food.”

I promised to do just that. Then we took a recording of the twin’s heartbeat, and we left.

Photo of a sonogram | Source: Pexels

Photo of a sonogram | Source: Pexels

When we got home, my mother-in-law insisted on making us dinner. I watched her take two steaks out of the fridge.

“I’m not eating red meat,” I said. “This pregnancy took away my love for steak and chips.”


Penny chuckled as she handed me potatoes to peel.

“I know,” she said. “I’m making a special stew for you. My mother made it for me throughout my pregnancies.”

I’ll admit, I loved having the special treatment that Penny gave me occasionally. My mom was in a different country, and sometimes, I just wanted a mother’s comfort when my body ached.

We cooked in silence — well, Penny did most of the cooking. I just sat at the counter and chopped or peeled whatever she gave me.

I paid extra attention when she was making the stew.

Pot of stew | Source: Pexels

Pot of stew | Source: Pexels

“What’s that?” I asked when Penny added a spice I hadn’t seen before.


“I brought it from home; it’s a homemade spice. It adds a great flavor to the stew.”

When Harry got home, he showered, and I fiddled with the twin’s heartbeat recording.

“I wish I had been there,” he said.

Then we sat down for dinner. Harry thoroughly enjoyed his steak because I had stopped cooking it for months. Penny’s stew was delicious but too rich, and I felt it sitting on my chest.

That night, I tossed and turned for hours, unable to get comfortable and fall asleep.

Eventually, at around three, I woke Harry up.

Pregnant woman in bed | Source: Pexels

Pregnant woman in bed | Source: Pexels


“What’s wrong?” he asked, sitting up.

But before I could say anything, I ran to the bathroom, ready to vomit.

“We need to go to the ER,” Harry said. “Don’t fight me on this, Mel. We need to make sure that the twins are okay.”

I had no intention of fighting him — I was feeling weak and suffered from cold sweats and cramps as well. We left Penny asleep and drove to the hospital.

We got to the hospital, and the ER doctor confirmed that the twins were fine — after that, he continued to do tests.

Hours later, when the blood test results returned, the Doctor walked to us with a look of horror.

“What on earth has your wife been eating?” he asked. “Her body is fighting off harmful substances. That’s why she’s been throwing up. It’s also the cause of her fever.”

When the doctor left, Harry turned to me.

Emergency entrance at hospital | Source: Pexels

Emergency entrance at hospital | Source: Pexels


“What have you been eating? Any new supplements?”

“The only new thing I ate was the stew your mother made. nothing seemed out of the ordinary. Although she did put some spice in it I have never seen before.”

Eventually, we were discharged.

The next day, when I had enough energy to get out of bed, I walked to the kitchen. My mother-in-law sat calmly at the kitchen table, sipping her tea as if nothing had happened.

It was her calmness that infuriated me even more.

“What was in that spice last night?” I asked her.

“Just something to help with the pregnancy. It’s an old family remedy.”

I was shocked. Her nonchalance about the whole situation was bewildering.

“What was it supposed to do? Induce my pregnancy?”

“It has different effects for everyone. But it’s supposed to be good. You’re not bleeding or anything?” she asked, sipping her tea.

Cup of tea | Source: Pexels

Cup of tea | Source: Pexels


I called Harry into the kitchen, and we had a long, intense discussion about everything.

It turned out that Penny believed in old-school, potentially dangerous home remedies that only offered a slim possibility of helping during a pregnancy, and merely in isolated cases.

Look, I admit that her heart may have been in the right place — I know that there are home remedies that help. But her lack of concern for the potential risks and her failure to inform us beforehand was alarming.

Eventually, we decided it was best for her to leave our home. Our trust had been broken, and our primary concern was the safety of our unborn children. Harry was torn between his mother and our family, but he agreed it was the right decision.

There was too much at stake and Penny’s hurt feelings would heal.

Stack of suitcases | Source: Pixabay

Stack of suitcases | Source: Pixabay


Thankfully, the twins and I are fine, but Harry and I are being extra cautious about everything I consume.

As for my relationship with Penny? She started being cold with me and said she would never forgive us for sending her back home. But we think she’ll reconcile with us when the twins are born.

Newborn twins | Source: Pixabay

Newborn twins | Source: Pixabay

Am I wrong for kicking my mother-in-law out, although she says she wanted the best for the twins and myself?

Here’s another story for you: Elle gives birth to her son, Wyatt, when things get crazy. Her mother-in-law tries to take her baby and husband away from her, claiming that she is an unfit mother. So, Elle gives Levi an ultimatum — either her and their son or his mother, Sandra.

Read the full story here.



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