Throughout the years that we were married, Alex and I—we were married for over 11 years—his relationship was often volatile with his mom, throughout that whole time.
Off and on, they would have arguments and then they’d have periods of somewhat calm and, you know, getting along a somewhat normal mother and son relationship.
He was such a great person where he would grant, you know, a just-met acquaintance, you know, a lot of respect and importance. So his attitude towards his mom was always that and more. You know, she was his mother. So he definitely, you know, took great pains to tell her that he loved her, would call her—make it a point to call her, “How’s your day, Mom?”—just these kinds of things to be a good son.
Karen would usually kind of blow up over something seemingly small or insignificant, usually when Alex would ask her a question about something that she maybe didn’t want to answer. But it was never anything important, that I could see. And she would usually irrationally erupt and kind of go into screaming fits against him.
I think he asked her about some piece of paper she had out in her office. Her office was where she did a lot of her work from. She did a lot of Internet computer work and she often had papers all over the place. But I think he just asked her like a kind of casual question about something he saw laying there in her office. And she just kind of erupted and was like, “What are you doing snooping around in here?!” And just went completely—overreacted, angry, volatile.
Just started saying mean and hurtful things towards him—things that, you know, just were not warranted and things you would never really expect your mother to say to you. I could tell that he took it really hard because she was his mother.
And he was always trying to just, you know, put some sanity in the conversation, I feel like. And she would always just have so much, so many like insults or angry words, irrational angry words to say that it just…he told me she would throw things and, you know, tell him to leave her house, “I don’t want to talk to you.”
She almost bullied him to a certain extent and made him feel like he was never good enough to be her son. She was, I want to say, somewhat wealthy or whatever, and she would kind of hold that over him, almost like a lure or something like that. Like, “I don’t know—you might get this, you might not,” kind of thing. And it was just another way that she would try to control him.
We were always so willing to repair the communication. We wanted to talk to her. We wanted her to be happy. We wanted to have a normal family line with her. And every time we would try and have that normal, that normal family, I guess, relationship with her, she would just blow up out of the blue and kind of irrationally drive him away. And the only reason that they even kept on continuing to talk after all these blowups is that he would always be willing to step back in and talk to his mom again.
One day Alex found out that his mom was using some sort of Internet chat room to state things that were not true about Scientology. And I want to say, things that were not true even about me and Alex, under that name. I think it was something like “War and Peace” or whatever—people have their names. But he called her about it and to basically ask her if that was her—if that was, you know, if she really was saying those things online about his religion and about—really about us. And she responded by—I mean, I was there for the phone call and I could even hear her basically just started insulting him—not even really responding to his questions. But I think in the end she did admit that: yes, you know, that was her and she had said those things. But in a very roundabout way she just started attacking him essentially, and saying that he was no good, just saying very disheartening, very hurtful, hurtful things to him. And in the end saying that he was not her son. She said, “I disown you. You’re disinherited. You are not my son. Don’t call me again. Don’t ever contact me again.”
After that conversation, Alex was very, very definitely much shaken up but, I mean, at that point, he was well into his adult years. He’d been dealing with his mom on and off for many years. It wasn’t a real surprise to him but it was a large shock to him that she would say those words to him. And she never once reached out to us, either one of us, since that moment. She never called, texted, emailed, sent a letter—nothing.
When Alex passed away, she never tried to reach me at all. She never once called me. I was very much in shock at the time and just dealing with everything myself. But I didn’t—I never heard from her. I had the same phone number and email that I’ve had for five years. And I did not get one message at all from her.