I’m in an (emotionally) abusive relationship, but I can’t end it because it’s with my newly-widowed mother.
The abuse (and it took me a long time to categorize it as abuse after many people called it that) has gone on for years, but reached new extremes when my father was dying, and has not recovered. We’re held together because I’m her only daughter (my brother, being a married man, gets preferential treatment from her as needing space to deal with his own issues of being a guy and a husband) and the family expects it of me.
She constantly invokes the “honoring your parents” clause to try to get me to do everything for her, even things that are in direct violation of halacha, because ironically, she’s less religious than me, so she doesn’t “buy” the argument that that commandment is not the be-all and end-all of Torah. She accuses me of sabotaging her relationship with G-d and Judaism, and for my brother becoming less religious. She told me that it was my father’s dying wish that I stop studying Torah.
I’ve spoken to several different high level Rabbanim about it, and they all agree that I am within my halachic rights to cut off the relationship beyond the basics of checking in to see that she’s well, and that I should not put her life in front of mine, but she obviously disagrees, and my whole family (which is, again, less religious than I am) disagrees.
“Jewish values” don’t allow a daughter to distance herself from her mother. We should do everything and anything for family, all of the time, no exceptions. Anyone who doesn’t follow this is the worst kind of person. I can’t relate to supportive sites that encourage you to face your abuser, beacuse I’ve done this and it’s been disastrous and solved nothing. I don’t know what to do.