I am in a situation that could get very difficult and I'm having a hard time dealing with conflicting thoughts and feelings. It's a very long story but I'll give the abridged version.
My mother and I were estranged for six years but have now reunited. The estrangement occurred after about ten years of tension due to her marriage to a man I did not like when I was 18. My own father had passed away a few months before her marriage, but they had been divorced since I was three.
The man my mother was married to really disliked me, and I knew it. I tried hard to get along with him even though i couldn't stand him, but nothing was ever good enough. He ACTED fine towards me and always went out of his way to help me out, and I tried my best to please him, but I was young and he was the adult and he just took every little thing I did and made it out to be negative. He sort of turned my mom against me too. It all culminated in some horrible ugly stuff six years ago surrounding the birth of my only child, and that was the last time we spoke. It's been hell for me, but I've really dealt with it pretty well and have had lots of therapy!
Anyway, my grandfather - my mother's dad - just passed away and I went to the funeral. My mother and her husband live in another state, the same one as her parents. What could have been awful turned out much better than expected - my mother seemed really happy to see me and wants to have me back in her life, and she wants to know my daughter. Unfortunately, her husband is a control freak and very unforgiving, and she has let me know that he doesn't want to have anything to do with me unless I "apologize" to him. Of course, if he has nothing to do with me, it will put limits on my relationship with my mother. It's really a sad statement about their marriage. My husband would never be so self-centered no matter how he feels about my mom.
I'm much more mature than I was six years ago when a similar thing was asked of me, but I am trying to find a balance between appeasing this guy so he will no longer be able to call all the shots and preserving my dignity. I will not allow him to set things up so that he looks like the grand poobah and I'm the bad girl begging for forgiveness. On the other hand, I'm willing to sacrifice a bit to have my mother back in my life. I hate that this is becoming my problem when it is really between them. I feel sorry for her, really. But theri marriage isn't my business.