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I Want People To Stop Abusing My Mother

by Anonymous
(Culver City, CA)

My story began several years ago at my local mosque in Culver City, CA. My mother attends the mosque on a regular basis. There was this woman who was 20 years my mother's junior who began to insult and slander my mother.

This pathetic woman is a relative of several of the board members of the Mosque. My mother is the proud parent of two very religiously and worldly accomplished sons, but she is a single parent. In Indian and Pakistani culture, a divorced woman is considered to be worthless and not capable of raising children. That is the reason why my mom fled Pakistan and came here to America. Unfortunately even though she fled Pakistan, she never truly escaped the culture. This woman at the mosque began to feel threatened by my mother due to her religious knowledge and stature. So once she found out that my mother is disabled, she started to viciously slander my mother.

My mother has severe breathing problems and gets very bad anxiety attacks. This causes her to lose her voice and become very dizzy. So this woman saw my mother in this condition and started to yell and scream at her in front of everyone. She started accusing my mom of outlandish things, like spitting on poor people and practicing voodoo and preaching terrorism. She told my mother she was going to burn in hell and that she doesn't deserve to be in the company of her and this mosque. My mother is a good Muslim and a good person, and this woman is a vile piece of trash, who according to any religious leader will tell you that has left the fold of Islam with her attitude.

This always tends to happen on the days that I wasn't able to attend the mosque, due to night classes or work. So after an incident last year where the woman caused my mother to have a panic attack that sent her to the hospital, I confronted her. I told her that she needs to stop, and who the hell does she think she is to tell my mother these kinds of things.

I told her she was a pathetic lonely human being and that she was a disgrace to humankind. She ran away and called the police on me. I tried to talk to the administration but my complaints were falling on deaf ears. The administration threatened to kick me out. I told them that they were practicing nepotism and that I only did what i needed to because they wouldn't control their own relatives. So the administration told me that they talked to her and that she would leave my mother alone.

Fast forward one year, and it turns out she didn't leave my mother alone. Two nights ago my mother had a panic attack earlier that day and lost her voice. So when she was at the mosque that night this same vile disgusting woman got up in the middle of the room and started to scream at my mother "Shut up you idiot! You shouldn't be here! Why are you here?" Out of the blue she started screaming at my mother.

My mother wasn't even talking let alone being loud. She had no voice! So I immediately brought this to the administration's attention. They blew it off, telling me that they can't do anything until they investigate it further. (It's not a murder/mystery I don't know why they need to investigate it!) So I told myself that I would handle it the next day.

After a day to recoup myself I calmed myself down and decided not to take drastic measures, and do something that I would get in serious trouble for. So I attended the mosque the following night, and the director asked me to come speak with him in his office. He told me that he is going to get my mother and that woman and the rest of the board members in a room and discuss the problem. I told him that I would like to be present for this meeting. He told me that would be unacceptable. I told him that I want to be present there, she is my mother and I am not going to leave her alone with you. I told him that the last time she was alone with you and the other board members that you had yelled at her and told her that because she wears a veil she is a trouble maker, and that she is causing problems at the facility and she needs to get out.

He didn't respond, and then he stood up. He started at me and said that since she was my mom I would favor her and that would not be the best thing. I told him that he and 3 of the other board members were relatives of the other woman, and his reasoning made no sense at all. He slammed his desk and told me that he is the head of this administration and that if I don't want to follow his rules that both my mother and I should leave.

I got pissed off! I told him that was hypocrisy. I said what kind of crap is that, to either let my mom be the lamb to the slaughter, or let his evil relative win. He then came up to me, grabbed my arm and told me that I needed to get out, and it was time for me to go. He then pushed me out of his office.

He yelled at me to remember that he was the head of this administration, and either it was his way or to get out. I think he forgot that this was god's house not his house.

I became so furious I started to run a fever and began having massive chest pains. I am 22 years old and I think I almost had a heart attack from the anger I felt. I want to get revenge on these people for mistreating my family. But I know any revenge I get on the individuals will also effect the mosque.

I don't even know what to do. I want to get revenge but at the same time I am deep down a good guy, and I don't want unnecessary suffering or disturbance of other people. I don't know what to do. I am not sure if I am more mad at them for treating my family like this, or mad at myself for not being able to do anything about it.
I am supposed to protect my family, and give them the safety and security that they deserve. It turns out that no matter what else I have done it seems I am always a failure at that.

Response from Dr. DeFoore

Hello, and thanks for telling your story here. I know it is very painful to see someone you love being hurt, and not be able to protect her. Under the circumstances, there doesn't seem a lot that you can do.

Any time you get so angry that you're concerned about yourself, as you are, you need to look at your own responsibility. Your rage and anger at the woman who has abused your mother, and the administration of your mosque, is too intense for your own good. I suggest that you use all of the methods on this FAQ page to understand and heal your anger. I also encourage you to read these healthy alternatives to getting revenge.

Hopefully, in this process, you will also come to a wise and prudent decision about how to best deal with your situation.

I wish you all the best towards resolution.

Dr. DeFoore

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