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Her Kind of Case


A highly-recommended emotion-filled legal drama with three starred reviews!
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Discuss Her Kind of Case by Jeanne Winer:
Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

Created: 05/16/19

Replies: 22

Posted May. 16, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1946

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Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

Mary and Leonard have a very emotionally abusive relationship, though Mary remains unable to leave her husband and, in the beginning, chooses him over her son. How did you feel about Mary's decision? Lee never directly tells Mary to leave her husband, but would you have told Mary to? Were you surprised that she testified in the end, or do you believe that a mother's love for her son will always trump her love for her husband in the end?


Posted May. 20, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
laurap

Join Date: 06/19/12

Posts: 251

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

I was surprised. Mary condoned Leonard's abusive behavior by her inaction, and allowed herself to be abused as well. U think her behavior was a form of self-loathing -- she saw herself as weak and inferior to her supremely self-confident husband and allowed this to affect her relationship with her son. I do believe "mother love" triumphs here though, and generally will do so. particularly in view of the devastating effects of behavior like Leonard's.


Posted May. 20, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
paulak

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 92

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

Bad mothers seem to be antithetical to how nature is designed but they do exist. I think this is usually because something fundamental has broken along the way and, in Mary's case, she has been so downtrodden that she has broken her mothering muscle, at least until Lee and Carla come along and jolt her out of her complacency.

I'm not sure if I would have told her to leave her husband. I might have suggested she had other alternatives. I think Mary ultimately knew she was in an unhealthy relationship but many abuse victims change only when they are ready, not because someone told them they should do it.


Posted May. 20, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
mildas

Join Date: 05/11/16

Posts: 29

RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end? Herself

Mary is an adult woman and is unable to leave her husband. It takes courage to leave everything you are familiar with and to start a new life. We don't Know Mary’s financial situation nor her past history with her sister. It seems like this is a strange relationship but we don’t have all the facts. Only Mary can make that decision.

I was surprised that Mary stood up for her son and did not follow Leonard’s wishes. However, I should have known better. Mary is a mother and she has to protect her son, he is a part of her. This may be the first
hint that Mary is rethinking her situation.


Posted May. 21, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
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taking.mytime

Join Date: 03/29/16

Posts: 132

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

Being a mother myself I know the link between mother and child and the force of protectiveness. I was not surprised that Mary testified.

One can only hope that Mary will leave that pig of a husband! However, the harm was already done. She had already let him abuse Jeremy and it came close to ruining Jeremy's life. Back again to staying with the 'known', regardless of what that is doing to yourself or your children is the thing we seem to stay with. Getting out of an abusive marriage is hard - but a move that absolutely must be made.

I would have let Mary know that I was there for her whenever she had had enough. That decision could only be made by Mary, but she needs to know she has a support system waiting for her when she has the courage to make the move.


Posted May. 21, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
cynthiaa

Join Date: 04/14/11

Posts: 94

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

If she asked for my advice on her situation, in a different setting than this, I would tell her what I would do if it were me. I would not word it in such a way as telling her what she should do. I was not surprised that she testified. I would have loved to know how she managed to get there with her husband knowing and being against it.


Posted May. 21, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
terriej

Join Date: 07/28/11

Posts: 219

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

Yes, I would have told her to leave her husband. Mental abuse prevention is very important to me. I wasn't surprised that she testified because I think a mother's love is one of the strongest emotions there is.


Posted May. 21, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rebajane

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 239

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

It seems to be extremely difficult for some women to leave abusive relationships. I would talk to her and try to help her see the abuse for what it is but, more important, I would listen and try to build up her self esteem to enable her and hopefully give her the tools to leave. I would encourage her to at least join I support group. I agree with terrj. She testified because no matter what, we mothers will do anything for our children despite the consequences for ourselves


Posted May. 22, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Elizabeth Marie

Join Date: 05/26/18

Posts: 38

RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

My volunteer work with abused women demonstrated to me that women will leave abusive relationships only when they are ready and that some are never ready. I would not have told her to leave Leonard but I would certainly have let her know that she had other options. I was not surprised that Mary testified, but I wouldn’t have been surprised I if she refused to testify. In the real world there are examples of mothers who choose their abusive partners over their children and mothers who save the children from the abusers.


Posted May. 22, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
acstrine

Join Date: 02/06/17

Posts: 157

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

I agree with mildas above that there seems to be a lot of information missing in Mary's history with her relationship with Leonard and maybe even some misinformation regarding what her sister thought she knew of her. According to Peggy, Mary was independent- -a feminist even--working hard to raise a chid on her own. So what would possibly cause her to be attracted to someone like Leonard in the first place???

I am embarrassed to admit that I struggle to feel compassion toward Mary, in spite of the fact that she is an emotionally abused woman. She lived a different life before Leonard. She cared for and loved Jeremy. She and her sister created a safe, nurturing environment together. So what switch was flipped that caused her to choose someone so extremely opposite from her and abandon everything about herself? And I absolutely do not understand (or even like) anyone who chooses a church or vengeful God who directs you to kick your own child out of his home because he is gay. The God I know and understand would never ask a parent to turn his back on his child. So I probably wouldn't have told Mary to leave her husband. I most likely would have asked her what in the hell she was doing marrying him in the first place. So I'm asking myself, "wow is it possible to not really like someone who is herself abused?" (And believe me, I'm feeling a bit guilty for writing off Mary's suffering under Leonard because of what she allowed it to do to Jeremy.)

In my opinion, Mary testified because "I don't want to go to jail, Leonard" not because she loved her son and wished she had done things differently with regard to Jeremy. Her testimony evoked no strong feelings of love for her child or pain that he had been living on the streets or regret that because of her lack of action as his mother he was now on trial for murder. In the big picture, the actual murderer was a better witness than Jeremy's own mother!


Posted May. 23, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
darylb

Join Date: 06/23/13

Posts: 124

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

Presenting other options to Mary may have given her fodder for thought, but until she is ready to leave, I don’t think telling her to would make a difference. I would have been more surprised (and disgusted) if Mary had not testified. I think she used the possibility of being sent to jail as a defense to Leonard, making it seem that she had no choice in the matter. I have a hard time understanding why she would remain in the marriage, but as others have stated, we do not know all the circumstances.


Posted May. 23, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
evelyng

Join Date: 02/07/18

Posts: 22

RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

I would not have told Mary to leave her husband, but I would have strongly supported any feelings from her that she was unhappy in her marriage and was thinking along those lines. Ultimately, those decisions have to be made by the person themselves. Mary was an emotionally battered woman and her priorities were very confused and conflicted when it came to her husband and her son. Her mothering instinct was damaged and she stood by and saw the suffering of her child and did nothing to help. Perhaps, emotionally, she was unable to help, although she recognized that it was happening. Mary was walking on her own path to recovery at the point that she did testify on behalf of Jeremy. God Bless, Mary and all the other Marys that are out there struggling to find a way out of emotional and sometimes physical abuse in a marriage.


Posted May. 24, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
terrio

Join Date: 08/16/11

Posts: 79

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

There are many examples in the real world (including in my own extended family) of mothers who choose their husbands over their children, even when their husbands aren't abusive. Some women choose security and "what would people think" over mother love. So I don't take it for granted that a mother would of course do anything to protect her child, and I would not have been surprised if Mary had gone home with Leonard instead of testifying. I also agree with acstrine that Mary seemed to be testifying more to save herself from jail time than to help Jeremy. I was not particularly moved by Mary's testimony.


Posted May. 24, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
josephinej

Join Date: 05/11/15

Posts: 63

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

Mary was at the very least an emotionally abused wife, and that made it almost impossible for her to stand up to Leonard, which is why she let him throw Jeremy out of the house. It took great strength for her to testify. Emotional abuse is paralyzing. You believe you are nothing, less than nothing, without the abuser. I wouldn't specifically have told her to leave, but I would have told her there were options, and offer my help should she ever think about leaving.


Posted May. 24, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
windellh

Join Date: 11/05/17

Posts: 30

RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

We are in control of no other person than ourselves. Mary has to make that choice. We can only transcend our problems on our own unless we ask for help. Unsolicited advise is usually not a good idea because it results in just aiding a persons denial of their situation. Mary testified in the end because her love for her son helped her overcome her fear of Leonard.


Posted May. 24, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
nancyh

Join Date: 06/25/13

Posts: 208

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

I probably would not have told Mary to leave her husband because I have known people who should leave, but you cannot convince them to do so until they can see it for themselves. Sometimes they are too afraid to leave. If you have told them to go, they may drop you as a friend and you will not be there to help them when they need it. I was surprised that Mary got over her fear enough to help her son. It took a Mother's strength to do that


Posted May. 25, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
cm28015

Join Date: 11/01/15

Posts: 32

RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

Probably not. Mary needs to make the decision on her own. In this case, harsh as it sounds, it wasn't Lee's responsibility to help Mary decide to leave her husband. It was her responsibility to reawaken her maternal feelings and responsibility to her son to save his life, to give him hope that someone cared about him, By funding that, she might begin to live own life, Until she could make her own decision to leave and cope with the results of her first decision to not help her son, the danger of violence was too great. I was glad she took the first step toward a heathy life by testifying and standing up for her son.


Posted May. 30, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
joycew

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 94

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

I would not have told Mary to leave her husband because it wouldn't have done any good. Mary's husband ruled their marriage and used his power of God to keep her in line. Lee's method of saying "Can you live with yourself if you turn your back on your son" was a much more effective way of getting through to her maternal instincts.


Posted May. 30, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
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jant

Join Date: 07/15/14

Posts: 26

RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

I, like Lee, would not have told Mary to leave her husband because she was obviously dependent on him. Her life centered around her husband and her religion even over her son. She eventually did the right thing in testifying but I imagined her returning to her husband after court. Mary had been beat down for too many years by both her husband and her religion. I don't envision Mary having contact with her son after the trial.


Posted Jun. 01, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
sharalynnep

Join Date: 12/04/11

Posts: 52

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

If Mary could stay with her husband after his abusiveness to their son, I don't think Lee telling her to leave him would do any good. Mary has to come to that conclusion herself. The damage has already been done and I don't see her developing a relationship with her son now. She probably goes back to her husband as it's the easy way out which is what she has always done.


Posted Jun. 01, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
charlenem

Join Date: 09/27/15

Posts: 8

RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

I lived that life. My mother was also abused physically & mentally as was my sister & I. We asked our mom that question - why didn't she leave dad. It was in the 60's & her answer was where would she go with 2 young children. Times have changed - now there are organizations that would help a mom/wife in this situation. My answer would be yes Mary leave him. I was surprised that Mary found the courage to leave & testify. The Patty Hearst syndrome is real.


Posted Jun. 04, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kathleenq

Join Date: 05/27/19

Posts: 4

RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

I don’t think you can “tell” any woman to leave her husband. It has to be her decision. What I would’ve done was to help her see how defective and damaging the relationship was her, and thus by extension to her son. Not surprised she testified in the end because a mother’s love for her son trumps all, even her husband...this is from the mother of 3 boys. My love for them transcends all.


Posted Jun. 17, 2019 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
scgirl

Join Date: 06/05/18

Posts: 110

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RE: Would you have told Mary to leave her husband? Were you surprised that she testified in the end?

I have never been in this position so it always amazes me how women stay in abusive relationships. If a man was verbally or physically abusive to me I would leave, especially if there was a lifeline there as Mary had with her sister. She also had to see how the abuse affected her son. True story - my mom was engaged to another man before she married my dad. On the evening before they were to get married, they had a fight and he hit her. She left him at the altar. Guess I have some of that in me!

So yes, I would have told Mary to run, not walk, to the nearest exit.


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