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Is it Me ?

Started by lancaster lady, March 25, 2012, 03:26:19 am

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lancaster lady

Hello Everyone ......

After reading a few members feelings re grandchildren , sons , daughters ......I really feel hard done by too , but then maybe its
my , health , hormones etc ...you all know I need to vent sometimes !
After my DS and his family moved out last November I thought perhaps we were on a new footing and could go on from there
with a new understanding of family values .....wrong !
I had to persuade them to come to my house for a family gathering on 26th December , as I know that now they live within walking distance of my DIL FOO they would of course spend Christmas Day together .
So since that day they have been here once to collect belongings they left behind , they live one hour away.
That is two visits in 5 months , go back a year and history is repeating itself .
My GD turned 2 in February , so we went to their house by invitation from my DS to celebrate ......they were out when we
arrived ...at her FOO . After phoning mobiles , they arrived .Visit went well and we left after a couple of hours , it being a work
day and we were tired , also having to work the following day .
So three weeks later , I had a hospital appointment near their house , well 20 miles away , my DS said come over , great .
He would be working , but my DIL would be home , and he would be there too shortly after .
We duly arrived ....she was out !
The same thing happened the following appointment two weeks later ....she was out !
Mother's Day was two weeks ago , I didn't even ask what they would be doing , lunching with her FOO , it turns out .
I asked my DS on two occasions what their plans would be for a Sunday lunch meet , they were meeting up
with friends of my DIL .
So yesterday my DH said he would love to see his granddaughter , I was surprised as he never usually initiates a visit,
but he said he missed her . I text my DS with a request , surprise , surprise , they are visiting her friends , not 10 miles
from here !

Now is it me ? Am I expecting too much to be included just once in a planned visit to see us ?
Also is my DIL trying to tell me something by being out each time we arranged a visit to their home ?
I never expected to be rewarded for rescuing them in their hour of need , but a little consideration
to let me see my GD would be appreciated .
I suppose by that statement I did expect something , but I thought it would bring us closer as a family and
help heal the ever expanding rift that we had .

So ladies , do I back off , and die off ? Last time I did that I was literally forgotten .
I love my GD dearly and really miss seeing her after living together for 6 months .
I don't want to be a whiny GM , so hard not to be , so far I haven't made any suggestions of me being
avoided , which is how it feels .
I also know I should be grateful for what little time I am allotted , as some GM's out there don't ever
get to see their GC.
So yes I'm with Pen , fed up of being excluded , and a little used in my case .

It's great to be able to vent without being judged , thanks for listening ...... :)


I am new to this board but found everyone's comments about my situation very helpful.  I am certainly not an expert in in-law relationships as evidenced by my own situation.  I do know the daughter in-law FOO is a huge force to compete with.  No matter how much you try...  That is just the way it is.  And I am speaking as a DIL whose FOO was very involved with my own family.  It wasn't due to choice... It was due to my dh's FOO not being interested.  So...  Some things I might try....  Write a short, heartfelt note about how much you miss them and would like to see them more often.  Have a heart-to-heart with your son.  Reinforce your relationship with your granddaughter...send her trinkets, stickers, etc in the mail.  I don't know your situation, but there is a delicate balance between showing you care and are willing to work at a relationship and smothering them and looking needy.  And that is only my opinion...  Speaking as a DIL.  Over involvement might drive me as crazy as under involvement.

At the end of the day, you need to feel like you did everything possible.  Good luck.  After reading many of these posts I wish I could adopt some of you wonderful grandparents.

lancaster lady

thanks Liz for your response ,
That is the problem , that fine line of intruding and caring !
If anyone ever finds the solution ....PLEASE let me know !


I understand right where you are I'm in your shoes. WE just had a new grandson , daughter's first and she is my only child ( have two stepsons). We have not really felt as we have bonded with baby due to the fact he is fussy, gassy and is nursing 24/7. The biggest problem is her DH who is a control freak, hasn't been nice to us since the wedding 2 years ago , is working hard at isolating her from us and was so rude to us at the hospital ( he didn't want us there , she called me ). WE have been so very close as her daddy died when she was 2 i remarried a great man when she was 12, so she would have a daddy , as mine died when i was 7 so I knew the feeling . She doesn't call us in front of him and now that she is not working her cell phone times are free when he is home . I feel so disconnected, such a pain in my heart, not talked to her about too much of it , but I"m sure she sees how he acts but what can she do. Everyone that knows her says it looks like body snatchers have taken my dear daughter who is so close to her mom. Her DH 's mom died 11 years ago , he has never been close to his dad or his brother, nor the rest of his family. so being the 3 of them suits him I'm sure . so i gave you a brief one and I'm right now just lost at what to do , but we decided when we got home from hospital to see a counselor, never used one before but we were both so devastated , couldn't eat or sleep , broken hearted as we had no time with daughter or baby due to him at the hospital which is 100 miles from us. I do hope you can find answers and if you do please share with me . We are still going to counselling hoping that we can get to a better place and not feel so hurt but I know it will take  time but in the mean time I'm like you do I have a heart to heart with daughter , leave it alone , back off or out. What to do , don't want to lose daughter or gs over it . take care and between all the folks on here that care and have walked in these shoes ( hey they ought to be worn out and holey by now  LOL) we will get better . Thinking of you

lancaster lady

Hi AL ,

My story is a bit longer than yours as my GD is now 2 years old .
However when she was born I felt exactly the same as you are now .
After not letting me be part of my GD's life for the first year , my FDIL announced she was
practising attachment parenting , which is parenting on a one to one basis .
If she had decided on this before my GD was born ,and shared it with the family , it would have saved
a lot of heartache .
A lot of things have happened since then and too long to go into , it's all in my post history .
Will we ever get it right , well I think that depends on the personalities we are dealing with , like your SIL
for instance .
MY own sister sees her GD on a regular basis , it's her DS's daughter and first GD .
The difference is her DIL is '' normal '' and wants her DD to have a close family bonding .
Go figure ..... ::)


(((LL))) hugs to you. I wonder when I'll stop being baffled by these stories? Families w/o these issues intrigue me. What's their secret? After much pondering I've decided it's just the luck of the draw in some cases.
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb


I don't think it is you, LL.  Some things I picked up on seem to be your DS miscommunicating.  I wonder why he feels comfortable planning DILs time for her.  He put both of you in an awkward spot by inviting you to his home when he wasn't there.  I think that one is square on him.

Two times in 5 months doesn't seem so bad to me but I understand your desire to see your grandchild more.  How far in advance are you asking to meet up?  I know that a lot of times people in DHs FOO ask us with only a few days notice (or more likely the day before lol) and we usually are already booked for that weekend. 

When I looked at our calendar right now we are booked 3 weeks out at the moment.  I don't think we are all that unusual so maybe it's a timing issue?  Just a thought but no, I don't think it's you.
People throw rocks at things that shine - Taylor Swift

lancaster lady

Well Pam ,

I realise that they have lives to lead of course , however I would like to be slotted in now and
again on their calendar . I want them to actually want to visit without any prompting .
Also they live only an hour away , not that far by US standards .
Re the visits my Ds arranged , my DIL knew we were coming each time and chose to be out .
After living with me for 6 months , I don't think she would feel awkward without my DS there .
Also my GD's birthday , they were out when we arrived at the arranged time .
Seeing my GD less often, makes me so sad , I can't explain it , and knowing that the other GM sees her every
day doesn't help .
They have no idea how I feel , I never allow my real feelings to show .
It's like being promised a lovely outing only for it to be cancelled time and time again ......it's all so similar
to what happened when my GD was born , only this time my DIL lives side by side with her FOO which makes
things worse .
Of course , at the moment there are no threatening bills or wedding to pay for .
Makes me feel thoroughly used and abused .


LL, big hugs.

Now did your DIL agree to the visit your son set up?  I am reading it as if he told you it was ok without checking with her first, then informed her this was what was going to happen.  And she's not going along with the plans he made.  Is that correct? 

If so, I think they are having trouble communicating and it's not you.  To be honest, I would be upset if my husband planned my time and informed me after he did it.  I don't think she's handling it in the best way but I also don't understand why your son keeps doing it.

People throw rocks at things that shine - Taylor Swift

lancaster lady

thanks for the HUGS ...

I have no idea if she agrees to our visits , but you may be right .
I will perhaps contact my DIL and ask when can we visit ? would that sound pushy ?
Can you see how paranoid it makes us GP's ?
We do not want to rock the proverbial boat !
My DS is as usual trying to please me I suppose , but I haven't a clue why he wouldn't ask his DW first ,
unless she wouldn't want us there ......for goodness sake , round in circles .....lol.


LL, you are the last person I would ever consider pushy!  My stepmother emails both DH and I with an invite, would that work for you to do?  We both get it and see it and are able to talk about it and then get back to her when we decide if we can or can't.  She does this with all of the kids that are married or with a significant other and she's not had a problem with it. 
People throw rocks at things that shine - Taylor Swift


You are such a kind kind caring person, LL, and you are among the few and the brave who would have done what  you chose to do.  It is gross thoughtlessness, plain and simple.  We all have our own methods for achieving our ends, but I think if I were in this position as far as my g/c are concerned, your husband was right on target.  I would just chunk trying to placate and make family time with these childish parents, and I would focus on SCHEDULING visits with my g/c, all very covertly of course, but how about a regular play day that is just yours and dh?  This is what I did a long time ago with my g/sons.  with my older g/s, I began taking him to church with us when he was 3 yrs old, and my dh and I did this until he was about 7 or 8, and he later served as acolyte and has now moved on of course, and dd takes them to her own church which is fine.  But it really built a special relationship with my g/ss.  Later since they had a flex school schedule, I got one day a week and took them out for outings, the infamous one recorded in one of my other posts.  Well today my heart bleeds for you and for my own selfish self also, because I'm depressed today and its been a toughie.  We soldier on, beloved.

lancaster lady

Thankyou Ruth for those kind words . Our problem is we all work . I work 6 days and only have Sunday free , plus that is their own family day too. Also we have never been allowed more than an hour alone with our GD .  However I love your idea and will try and work toward some kind of alternative solution .  Perhaps my DIL went out was to make a point to my DS at our expense ! However manners don't seem to matter much these days , she still never thanked me for giving them a home ........another point , when signing a mothers day card , would you just put your own name on or your partner / child ...  for GM ?   On no don't go there LL .


LL, we seem to have been blessed with a certain sort of DIL. When they need something from us they manage to tolerate us, but when that need has been fulfilled we go back to our previous status. Our ever-hopeful DSs try to pretend things are 'normal' again and again by inviting us to come by or meet up. Our DILs will let us know how they feel about it one way or the other (leaving the scene, being outright rude, walking ahead of us, sneering, making snide comments.) Since our DS's don't treat their ILs that way, we can be proud of our good parenting skills, lol.

I can picture what an easy, friendly, fun relationship w/DS & DIL would look like without all the eggshell-walking and hurt feelings. I'm as hopeful as DS in that regard, apparently, since I fall for his invitations time and again, just recently in fact - a big, expensive, time-consuming, hurtful mistake (the old saw about insanity & repetition comes to mind...)

If only I had a magic wand for all of us!
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb


Lancaster Lady,

I don't know all the details of your interactions with your dil, but I noticed a pattern with your post.  You always go through your son, but the dil is expected to handle the plans.  I presume from this that you and dil have no obvious animosity, cause otherwise I would assume that you would go through your son from start to finish.  From a dil's perspective, I would find this a bit presumptuous that the dil is expected to handle the plans, to be entertain you when you are there, to be there when you arrive, etc, but she isn't even consulted during the making of the plans.  My guess is that this is more of a marital issue between your ds and dil, but you might want to consider checking with her directly as well.  My speculation is she is feeling a bit put out by being told what to do and mildly disrespected, not necessarily by you, but by her dh.