To My Future Son-in-Law, From the Mom of a Daughter With a Chronic Illness


The other day I went shopping with my daughter, Molly, when a young man looked at her. I mean, this was obviously going to happen now that she’s 17.  

Then I thought — geez — this is going to be hard. I wasn’t expecting to have to think about this right now, but I think I’m going to have to hold interviews!

Instead, I decided to write this letter as the first stage of clearance before the entrance exam.

To my future son-in-law,

We haven’t met yet, but I just want to tell you how lucky you are, and I need to let you in on few things.

I hear you have affections for my girl, and I have to say I can’t blame you. My Molly though isn’t your normal run-of-the-mill kind of girl, which is a good bonus in lots of ways. Her uniqueness is outstanding, but you probably know this by now as I expect you have been dating for a while.

She’s very black and white with her thoughts; she has no gray areas. That’s probably what attracted you to her. Good is good and bad is bad. There is no in the middle.

Her heart is made of pure gold, although as a baby it was a little bit broken in places. That’s probably the reason it’s evolved into something so special.

She doesn’t have that hard, brush-off attitude that most people do. She doesn’t understand nastiness, name-calling, hurtful sarcasm or arguments. She simply doesn’t get it, so please don’t ever upset her.

She was just born this way; she has sensitive feelings. Seriously, I’ve tried to toughen her up, but it will never work, so you must just simply love her.

I’ll guarantee this now: From my 17 years of experience with her, she’ll never do anything to upset, offend or hurt you. It’s simply not in her. This is my lifetime guarantee. You can get a refund if I’m wrong.

Moll will never fake being tired, so please don’t ever become frustrated when she is.

She’ll make you laugh a lot, but you’ll have to reassure her you love her a lot, too. because sometimes she feels a little insecure. I find plenty of cuddles, your time and chocolate is better than anything on down days.

Bring the world to her and take her to see the world. You must always make sure she’s warm, though. In the winter, you’ll need extra blankets, and the heat will be on constantly. If she’s warm, she will stay relatively well, unless she catches a cold. Try not to let her catch a cold.

Find things to do at home if Molls can’t make it out. We’re working on this whole getting well again thing right now, so I’m hoping by the time she meets you, she’ll be fit as a fiddle.

She’ll still need protective arms, though, so if yours aren’t strong enough, Moll isn’t your girl.

You’ll need to learn physical therapy and how to use her emergency medication. You need to be in tune with her illnesses. I will never put as much trust in anyone as I am putting in you.

Moll needs you to be her advocate. You’ll need to fight in her corner if she ever ends up in the hospital. You’ll need to be strong for her and know exactly what she needs, medically and emotionally. And if you can do all this and you love my Molly as much as I do, I will happily give her to you to cherish.

She is hilarious, loving and beautiful and will love you as you should be loved. She’s a very special person, and she just needs a little bit more care than your average gal.

I’m in no doubt that she’s lucky to have you. And if you’re not fazed by all of this, you’re lucky to have her, too. She has defied all odds by making it through to this stage, but she has done it. And she’s here to stay, so remember that when you feel a little tired sometimes. She’s tough in all the right places, and that’s what’s important.

By the way, I’m always here — 24 hours a day if needed. I will always be here.

I will cry for the entire day on your wedding day and probably for weeks afterward. But that is not because I’m sad, it’s because I’m so happy my beautiful daughter has found someone to love and care for her as much as I do. And I’m so thankful to you for making her happy. I’m truly grateful she finally has the life I’m working towards getting her right now. 

My trust is in you to carry on where I’ve left off. Love her and have the best life together.

Yours Sincerely and With Much Love and Happiness,

Molly’s Mom (Your Mother-in-Law to Be, Cook of Christmas Dinners and Friend)

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