Dear Abby: ‘Betty’

Dear Abby Spread

The Question

DEAR ABBY: I’m not proud to write this, but I don’t like my son-in-law. I think the feeling is mutual. He’s arrogant and thinks he knows everything.

My daughter and I had a close bond before she married him. That quickly changed. She barely comes to my house anymore, and I don’t see my grandkids as often as I’d like. I don’t have a car (I’m working on that), and I rely on them for transportation. I don’t like going to their house because I don’t feel wanted.

I tolerate my son-in-law because I know my daughter loves him and I try hard to stay out of their business. What advice can you offer me?

Hello Betty (this is what I have named this anonymous woman),

My name is Freyja and I have been allocated to be your TABI free reader. Thank you for entrusting me with your request and giving me this opportunity to perform this tarot reading for you.

I use the Tarot as a key to unlock our subconscious, revealing the insight and knowledge our minds withhold, sometimes in an attempt to protect ourselves. As an intuitive reader, I interpret the rich symbolism found in the card’s imagery, pulling back the curtain so the truth can be revealed. I use these findings to offer guidance, as well as empowerment, with the matter at hand.

I used a spread from The Tarot Bible by Sarah Bartlett: Letting Go of the Past and the cards I used is from the Universal Tarot from Lo Scarabeo.

Letting go of the past spread

Card 1. I want to let go of ….-  Five of Cups
Card 2. What is stopping me – Seven of Swords
Card 3. How to move forward – Six of Wands
Card 4. Future influences to avoid – Seven of Pentacles
Card 5. Future influences to embrace – Death

Initial Analysis

Each suit from the Minor Arcana is represented, providing for a balanced reading, and we have one Major Arcana card and 0 Courts.

The Major Arcana cards represent important life lessons or stages of development we all experience throughout our lives. They hold more weight than the Minor cards because they are associated with pivotal events in our life. They act as signposts on our life’s path.

The Minor Arcana cards represent day-to-day life and its ups and downs, challenges and opportunities.

Numbers: 2 Sevens and a sequence of 5, 6, 7 representing middle to latter stages of development. Sevens are associated with challenges which is apt in this matter and confirms the situation.

Directionality: The person is your first card (Five of Cups) has his back towards the other cards. While he is looking to the past, all the other cards are looking to the future(see below).

This is something you should be wary about. Don’t let your grief keep you from moving forward.

Dear Abby Spread directionality


Card 1. I want to let go of ….-  Five of Cups

Five of Cups Keywords:  Loss, but not all is lost, depression, pessimism, bereavement, mourning, regret, frustration.

Betty, in order to move forward with your daughter, as well as, your son-in-law, you’ll need to let go of the feeling of losing her. It suggests you may have been depressed over the drastic change in your relationship and the fact that you haven’t seen your grand children. You may be blaming yourself for what has happened, going over all you said and did, leaving you full of regret. And you may be blaming your SIL too, going over all he said and did, leaving you frustrated and lost.

Being a grandmother is one of the most wonderful gifts and not only do you need them in your life, they need you in theirs. In the 5 of Cups, you may notice that not all the cups have spilled over. This shows that not all is lost; there is still hope as long as you can let go.

Card 2. What is stopping me – Seven of Swords

Seven of Swords Keywords: Sneakiness, cheating, stealing, deceit, betrayal, strategy, sabotage, traitor.

It seems in the Seven of Swords, that what is stopping you is your mistrust of him and you’re having a hard time getting past it. In addition, you may feel both betrayed by your daughter and sabotaged by him, thinking he’s chirping in her ear, manipulating the situation and you may be spot on.  In addition, you may have concerns that he might cheat on your daughter, furthering your distrust and dislike in him.

Card 3. How to move forward – Six of Wands

Six of Wands Keywords: Over-coming the struggles in the fives, victory, rewards, recognition, achievement, accomplishment, success, triumph.

Betty, the Six of Wands is a welcome card in this position. If we look at just the number versus the suit (Wands) – the fives are associated with struggles, bumps in the roads, etc. The card representing ‘what you need to let go of’ is the Five of Cups. Therefore, this card suggests if you are able to ‘let go’ and find yourself overcoming your regret, depression, and frustration, your daughter will recognize this change and you may find she rewards you by inviting  you over more and more, letting you in again. Thus, you may feel victorious.

Card 4. Future influences to avoid – Seven of Pentacles

Seven of Pentacles Keywords: Taking a break, assessing your work, perseverance,  commitment, evaluating, return on your investment, rewards, appraisal.

The Seven of Pentacles is about staying the course, so you should be careful to not slide back into old habits or old ways; keep moving forward.

This could also be suggesting to not expect to much in the beginning. If you’re trying hard to change the situation for the better, you may be looking for more than she can give such as rewards or appraisal for your courage and strength. Accept what progress you and she make in the last card, and stay committed to the process.

Card 5. Future influences to embrace – Death

Death Keywords: Endings, transformation, end of a cycle, change, transition.

The Death card is from the Major Arcana and as I said, they hold the most weight in a reading.

Betty, unfortunately, you are the odd man out in this situation, and any changes in the beginning are expected from you and only you. Once, your daughter has accepted you more and more, due to the your efforts, this card implies that she too will make her own changes and who knows, maybe your SIL will too. The Death card points to a huge transformation in the matter at hand may occur; your relationship with your daughter and your grandchildren. The relationship may be renewed again and this messy cycle may end and transition for the better.

Another influence to embrace, is getting transportation as you mentioned. Then you will not have to rely on them to pick you up and drop you off. You will regain your control and independence.


Betty, when we pull all the cards together, the Tarot’s message is clear and seems to be something you had already accepted before writing in.

Your daughter loves her husbands and I’m sure she doesn’t want to be in the position to choose between either of you. Unfortunately, the father of her children will always win (as long as their on good terms) and she could resent you for putting you in that position. Whether that’s fair or not, is another story.

In order to move forward and leave the past in the past, the commitment to change, such as modifying your attitude and being positive, needs to be initiated by you. Once your daughter, and hopefully your SIL, acknowledges and appreciates your effort, she/they too will most likely make the effort in return.

Please remember the warning in the Seven of Pentacles, don’t expect to much at once and be careful to not take any step backwards. It could impede your progress.

The Death card, which represents transformation, suggest that if you follow the advice of the other cards, the potential to turn the situation around is high. Hopefully, you can see your daughter and grandchildren more, and the tension, resentment, and regret will fall away, paving the way for a happier, more inclusive future.

Betty, I hope this reading gave you the guidance you were looking for and/or a different perspective.

Thank you and I wish you all the best,


Spread from:
The Tarot Bible by Sarah Bartlett

The Tarot cards above are from:
Universal Tarot by Roberto de Angelis © 2003 Lo Scarabeo srl, via Cigna 110, 10155 Torino, Italy. All rights reserved, used by permission.