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son and dil conflict!

Started by Gail, May 15, 2013, 08:10:10 am

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I don't even know where to begin....   I am so glad I found this site and I have spent some time reading and seeing all the hurt that goes around and my heart is heavy.   

     I am a mother of 3 boys....  Two of my boys ages 25 and 19 are married and I have a grandson who will be 2 in June from my oldest son's marriage.  My youngest will be 16 this July.

    My oldest son will be married 5 years this month and problems started right away....  They came to live with us for 2 months to save money for he was still going to College.  A little about myself first...  I have been very ill for a little over 12 years and suffer with severe chronic pain and a lot of over health issues I won't get into.  I talked with my son before them staying with us and told him that we we're fine with them staying with us and welcomed them, but, that I could not do everything myself and would expect "some" help.   Dishes and some housecleaning is all I asked for....  My dil was very distant, wanting to be left alone and was only happy when my son returned home from work!  Her energy picked up and her attitude changed when he was around and when he wasn't she didn't want to be around us.  I was tired and asked and asked that she help, but, it was constantly a fight!   I spoke with her mom briefly and she told me she had same problems at home, but after the continued attitude I spoke with her mom a second time and I got the cold shoulder.  I just thought that her mom would at the very least tell her to get up and be civilized and help.   

    Fastforward and throughout the years their has been a wedge between us, I believe it is because I said something and that I wasn't happy with her attitude.  When she had the baby...  she wanted her mom over (mom lives in u.s. and they live in Canada) first and her mom stayed a week.    They used their airmiles to help pay for her trip, we never see any of that kind of stuff with us.  We have supported them for 2 months, given them gifts, money and so on..  They wanted us to wait some time....  I was so upset and hurt!!!   I have seen and felt the uncaring and the preference....    They married in the u.s., we were unable to go, it was a justice of the peace, short and sweet!   Ha!    In these 5 years they never once came to visit us, just this past December they did because my second son got married!    We live 10 hours apart, there was always a reason, working, and money..     We've asked them to come and visit!   Oh, and they did make a trip to the states, a 2 day trip with a baby, but they did not have the time or money to ever come and visit us.   

  I know it must be hard for her to live so far away from her parents, not seeing them but only twice now in 5 years I believe and her mom 3 because they flew her up.  But, they still never made one trip and only because our son got married and any important events like having our grandson baby dedication, they wanted to do it with her family in her home church.   We have had many troubles trying to get them to skype with us....  asking to see him at least once a week, I don't think this is too much to ask for.  Other grandparents I talk to see their grandkids this often and some of them skype everyday, yup, everyday, now that is lots, but I'd be happy with once a week and if that skyping session was short due to being difficult with a toddler then maybe trying again some time.  If we lived close I would expect to see them, my grandson, not only once a month or every 3 months.  Gosh, what is family for, what is grandkids for then if we don't build relationships.    We had that when I was growing up.

So with this we are going through many struggles, ongoing....  Also, this is very very difficult on me because my husband is the type of guy who just sits back and lets things ride whatever way they go.  If he doesn't see his grandson for months and months it's o.k.   Same with the situation with my dil, when she didn't want to help out when they lived with us for 2 months, my husband expected and expects me to deal with stuff like this, he doesn't want communication/confrontation.   :(    It's a struggle all around!


   Oh my goodness.....   You know when stress is so bad when it takes you 30 tries to post!   I kept getting an error, post too long at first then saying it was already posted then many times saying I wasn't doing something right with the letters.  Till I finally figured it out, I was adding those 2 numbers at  the end and giving the answer.   Yes, I am so so so stressed and tired and scared, the pain is also too much!

   I will continue with my post in segments here because it is long, I apologize for the length of it, but really felt like I needed to share....  Thanks everyone :)

Now, with our 2nd son....  They got engaged last summer and when they did I was so happy and excited!  They've been together for several years and we know his wife (now) well and her family!   We know them from Church, although with my being too ill now I no longer go to Church, for the past 3 years now...   When he got engaged I told him how happy I was... there was no problems with our relationships and I told him that I would love to help out in any way I could with any of the wedding stuff!   My son works in the bush and is in there for 2 weeks and out for one...  his wife was 10 hours away at College and when my son came out of the bush for a week he was flown to his home 10 hours away also.  They lived apart, my son with our oldest son and wife and she with some people from a Church out there.   

  Problems started up....  When we moved our son 10 hours away, my husband was working a lot of overtime, very stressed and tired and before leaving I called up her mom (we know each other well from Church) and asked if they would be o.k. with their daughter staying at our oldest sons house for the 2 nights we would be there, she would sleep in the basement, they would be apart!   She said no...  Well, for the past 3 years our son and their daughter would go on Youth Rallies, Mission Trips and stay (sleep) in the same Church, not together but in the same building, they also stayed at my dil's grandparents, her mom's on several occasions and not but one month prior to this moving and conversation, they all, my son, her and her parents stayed at her Dad's parents because they all went out of town for a wedding.  This happened in the month of August twice for a wedding.  Well, I asked my dil's mom..  "why has it been o.k. for it to happen with you guys but it isn't with us"    Well, she said that it would be o.k. with her but it isn't with her husband....  This made no sense... I told her this was so one way and disrespectful!   So, when we we're there my husband drove her back and forth to her place everyday we were there, 20 minutes one way, 20 minutes the other way.... :P

    Now, with the wedding stuff!   Oh, with the Bridal Shower first!   After the shower, we we're cleaning up....  Her mom organized everything ( her mom is the Youth Leader at the Church) and her mom's best friend helped!   I offered, but she said everything was good and taken care of..     I was picking up those plastic type of white flowers you decorate with and thought they might be good to keep so I went up to her and mentioned this and asked if she had heard or had any idea what they (son and dil) would be driving in after the wedding.  This is what happened... her girlfriend was on my left and she on my right.  She said:   "well, it's a secret, pause, but only for the guest!"   Then, her girlfriend said:  "But, I know"...   Then she told me...   My heart sank into my stomach!   I was staying in touch with my son who was working in the bush, asking and communicating and even though it was their plans, them paying for the wedding, she was doing most of the nitty gritty!   I think this is normal and that's fine, but because of this.... any help needed she would talk with her mom (normal too), but when I had mentioned in the summer that I would like to help and be involved when I was able to to him he told his fiancee and she told her mom too.  Again, we all know each other well.....    even us mothers. 

         I was excited for this wedding too...   Well, neither the daughter or the mother ever called, I do feel I made myself available but at the same time wanting to make sure I did seem like I was wanting to take control or run the show.   Time went on and it got closer to the wedding and I was wondering about the photos that was going to be taken at the wedding and thinking about what kind of a struggle it was going to be....  Her mom is a Photographer and she was getting her best friend to take the photos...   We really didn't want to hire someone, it is very very expensive...  I was worried and didn't know what the plans we're for anything, how the photos would be taken, if they even we're going to include our side with the bride and groom and if any other family photos would be taken.  So, I called her mother and asked and she said not to worry that all would be taken care of.  Well, at the wedding, I had to run after the bride and groom and her friend to make sure photos we're taken.  I should have been enjoying the wedding (like my husband, sigh!) but I wanted to make sure we had photos of us with them, with grandparents too.   Isn't stuff like this suppose to be organized???   I made it clear more than once that I was able to help with stuff when able....   A couple of weeks before the wedding I sat with my son and dil on skype and talked to them both about having 2 families now and that they had to make sure that they honored both sides.  Short story here and I also was so upset about not knowing much about anything going on and yet was being told by my son and her that there was so much to be done.  No one was saying anything or involving me with anything, decorating or nothing...   So, after talking with them, 2 days later her mom calls me to ask if I want to help doing chocolate covered spoons.  So, we got together at my house and did them.   I was happy, but not happy because it was a struggle.


It was a struggle all the time....  It was Christmas and all my boys we're home, I was happy... but I wasn't!  I wanted to make sure my son who was getting married was making sure he spent time with us, that he made a trip out of town to visit my husband's parents.  They are in their 80's and he was taking care of her, she is not well and they would not be coming to the wedding.  So, I told him he needed to visit, a 2 hour drive, so we all went together, him, her and hubby and I and our youngest!   There was also my parents and my mom's parents and family!   I knew he would be having to go out of town (4 hours) to another wedding shower for them both that her mom's mom had organized!   I was just telling him and her that they had to make time for both sides of the family!   Our whole family had a get together at the home where my grandparents lived.

   Now, the day after the wedding we we're to go to her parent's house for the opening of gifts....   That was fine, but, because we we're all home, son's and dil and grandson we wanted to have some time alone the day after the wedding also...   Her parents would be going to Church anyway, but, at first they wanted to do it in the morning, then they changed it and so I (we) had to work around their plans, their changes....   Well, so I asked our son to come home the day after the wedding (he was moody) so we can have several hours to ourselves to open gifts and say our goodbyes, without having to do it at their house.   So, they did, reluctantly and with grumpiness....
    After the gifts we're opened, they wanted or it at least felt like they wanted us to leave so they could open their x-mas gifts, we were all their, our oldest son and his wife and us parents.  Well, our son was still not ready and packed to leave to go on their honeymoon, he still had flying (air tickets stuff to take care of) and her mom was driving them out of town to catch their one flight!   He knew he had to come home before they even left to go out of town to do this stuff!   

  Well, we felt so uncomfortable and my dil and my son went into the hallway to talk and her mom was somewhere I don't know... But, I felt uneasy and felt like we should have left!  I was not going to take care of my son's stuff at home, it was his responsibility and he knew he had to because there was a time schedule.  Even though we have known each other.... her mom and us for years, I didn't feel like we should of been there....  but, we are there because it was their plans to have us their for the opening of the gifts and yet they had yet to still do their family opening of Christmas gifts.  Urghh!   Also, there was their neighbor (a women they rent their second house out to) she was there, my dil's father wasn't he had to leave he is a pilot and works out of Toronto, 12 hours from where we live.  This is why I did not even want to do this gift opening too.

   Another thing......   After the ceremony, all the left over food and cake went to her house, supposedly for us for the brunch the next day!  Well, it was, but, there was tons of leftovers....  a lot!   There was no offer for any of it to be sent home with us...   I thought is would be nice to get some of it too......   So, before saying anything I asked my son first if the food and cake was it them that payed for it!   He said yes he paid for it with his wife....  So, I said, well, could your dad and I have some to take home, and he said to ask her...  Well, I didn't like that either and I spoke with him afterwards and told him that the food and cake should have been split between both families.  He said: well all you have to do is ask!   Urghhh!

  They left for their honemoon....  In January I got a call from her mom, she had just mentioned prior to the wedding about me taking photos at our house of our son and the groomsmen.  I said yes I would, even though it was so stressful!  I had no one else to take photos....   I also do photography, only for personal use, it is something I have done when I am not so ill!   So, anyways I told her yes I had photos.... she asked for some because she was making a 300 page photo album of the wedding and was putting it together and getting it ready to send to them.  I asked her if it would be o.k. once she was done with it if my hubby and I could see it before she sent it out!  She said:  no     I asked why and she said that usually the bride doesn't want anyone to see it till her and her husband see it!   I then said that she (her mother) is seeing it, but she said well, she obviously has to put it together and she told me I had to ask her daughter if it was o.k. first!!!

  So, I called her up and asked and she said it was o.k.  and I asked my son, which I knew he didn't care at all and I called her back and said it was o.k.   She said:  "I'm surprised!"     Ughhh....   I'm tired!

   Now, sorry for all the info. this has been so stressful and I am so upset, hurt, angry and lost right now....     Now, we haven't seen our son and his wife in over 4 months...  They went on a mission trip in February for 12 days with her mom and the youth group and her parents and siblings visited them where they live in March!   My husband went and picked them up last weekend so they can come and live here for 4 months...  My son works in the bush, it is 2 hours from here and she will be working and they will be staying at her parents house.   Her mom is leaving with her siblings to join her husband in Europe for 5 months, she will return in August to do a wedding shoot and spend some time with her.   
    When my husband picked them up they got here around 6:30 and spent the night and the next day till around 2:00, then I drove them to her parents house to unload the car and him pack to be brought to the bus to go in the bush to work.

  Now, he is coming out of the bush


Now, he is coming out of the bush on Thursday...    I have been so upset with myself these past couple of years and with hubby....   My boys spend a lot of time with Church, Youth Group, Sundays, Youth Rallies and with this it was less time we had with them.  Now, I wanted them to because I firmly believe it is important to, we need to be with other believers, but, with me being unable to get out these past 3 years it has been a huge struggle.  Our boys did lots in the Church, helping others and spending a lot of time with my son who just married with their family, she is the youth leader.   They have a farm with horses and do hay and such!   A good place for activities with The Youth!   I have no problem with this....  Our boys helped a lot over their, bailing hay and that was o.k.

     But, now, I am feeling like we should have made more time for us as a family to teach them the value of how important we are.  Being very ill and raising children/kids/teens is so hard!   I also struggled with having them help out at home....   only had trouble because I feel they we're left to be too busy with The Church stuff, rather than getting them to learn to be more responsible with their responsibilites at home.  Also, I'm feeling they don't see how really ill I am, they do, but, they don't!   I'm struggling deeply with this... they can't feel the pain and suffering I'm in and they can't feel it so to show their help and compassion is difficult!   How do you get your kids to do this....   My husband (love him) has a diff. time with this too.....   and we've had our differences and struggles.

   Anyway, son's coming out of the bush on Thursday, they are staying at her parents house for a week while they are still here....  I heard her father is not coming home till Sunday.   I called and asked her what her work schedule was like, how her new job was too and how it was all going....  Not just calling to demand!   I stayed in touch with her a little in these 10 days she was home.   Now, she told me her schedule and I mentioned that we would like to see them....  I am not happy with our son because I had told him that we wanted to have him visit, have him help his dad with a bit of stuff around the house.   Yes, he is married, yes he has his life, but, we know he is helping her family and we helped them, hubby drove two days to pick them up to move them back here, took a day off of work to do this.  Spent hours doing their taxes and besides we are his family and he can help us some too.   He said yes...

   Now, we can keep in touch through facebook and hubby with the phone while he is working in the bush!   He didn't make any efforts to talk to us, I wanted to talk with him, but ended up calling her and asking her about her work schedule.  She mentioned that our son could come by while he was working and I had also mentioned to her that my husband would like for him to give him several hours to hall some wood.  We "also" want to see them and have them over.....   She said that it would be better if they came over and stayed a night when she was off the next day.   So, anyways....  Afterwards she messaged me and gave me their plans and schedules (and that it was best it was done on a message so it was easier that it was all written down.) 

  My husband is off on Saturday through Monday because Monday is a Holiday, but, he is also on call and could get called to work anytime.  That is why I also was thinking of the weekend and  Sunday and Monday (which she was off too) would be good.     I know her Dad is coming home on Sunday and her family is leaving on Friday for Europe.  They are also staying their and I know she works but from what I see there is time for them to be together.   This is what she said their schedule was like.....  After my son gets home on Thursday, he would get some sleep (he works nights) and they would come for a visit late afternoon/early evening.   Then, they could come after her meeting at Church and stay for the whole afternoon or till whenever.   But, when I had messaged her back with the Sunday and Monday and wanting them to stay over and spend these two days with us, since we haven't seen them (our son) in over 4 months, Mother's Day went by too, and I wan't to spend some time with him, with both of them.   Yes, I miss him,....    She then said: We have to get back to my parents place Sunday evening because they are getting ready to leave and they have a lot of stuff to do and like on Monday I think people from the church are coming out to help with everything and my they're doing a lot of stuff for us too like rotatiling the garden for me and so we have to be here to help.


So, we see our son on Thursday, don't know for how long, on Sunday and again don't know for how long, and the whole helping my husband on Saturday thing...  well, I'm not happy with my son at all, he knows and he isn't in my opinion (I believe but could be wrong) he isn't doing the plans and schedules.   So, she said they could stay over the Sunday and Monday and the Saturday she was going to mention it to Kyle and see because he wanted to make plans with a buddy!

  Then she said our son would come and visit us and have supper with us on Tuesday while she was at work till 8:00 p.m. and she would come for the night!   I have a feeling they will leave early, yes, she works at noon the next day till 8:00 p.m. 

Then they would come around noon on Thursday to spend a bit of time with me before he leaves..... 

    My husband works day shift!    With all of this.... I can see the pattern of how it is plans around her family, church, their friends first and we are going to be told when they can come and see us.  I get the feeling that it will continue to be a struggle, where they have other more pressing and fun activities and with more exciting friends and family!

    I am not happy with her attitude and I am not happy with my sons.....   I sent them my thoughts....   I am tired of the lack of effort to be loving and considerate towards us from both of them...  And, yes, while I'm at it, I am very dissapointed with her mother, her attitude, she is a Youth Leader, a woman who calls herself a Christian and for the past 3 years I have been at home, very ill.  Not only her attitude but I have not one woman from our Church who ever makes any effort to call or even see how I am or if I need anything.  In the last year of so I asked the boys if the Church was even praying for me and they said no.   I am fine...  I do trust the Lord, but, I will be honest, I am so hurt, it is a lonely lonely road!   

  Once, when they had a Youth Rally at The Farm and there was other Church Youth who come up....  The used the Barn and there was diff. thing going on.   I wanted to go because (my boys we're going) my son who just married was in playing in the worship team.  This was very diff. for me to go because of my illness.   There is this girl in the youth that I know, she struggles immensely in her life, she came up to me and we talked!  The worship team was playing, it was very loud!   Many we're still talking, including woman from the Church, just 10 feet in back of hubby and I.  Well, my son's mil's ended up in front of myself and this girl and my husband, around 5 feet from us.  Like I said I was talking and keeping it low enough and trying to listen to the worship team and listen to her.  I wanted to encourage this youth teen girl!  Well, my son's mil turned around and looked at me and said I was being disturbing.   Well, I'm sure my face turned beat red, I was so so upset and anxious, I felt so horrible, I had to leave the barn.  I got outside, the girl followed me and all I said was I couldn't believe she just said that.   The girl said she is like that...   Hubby and I left!

  I messaged them both back anyways and told them my thoughts, I have no regrets because I don't think I being unreasonable, I don't think that my son and her are being considerate or honoring us in the same way as they honor her parents.  From what I believe....  God's word says honor your parents.  We are to put God first, our spouse second and our children next if their are any and then parents next, then the Body of Christ!   I have always honored my in-laws, I have always considered my in-laws as important in my (our) lives as my parents.  We stayed at their place, we invited them and we did this because I believe that they too have a son, who is my husband whom I love, whom they loved and raised and they have feelings and I want to have a relationship  and memories with.  Whom I wanted my boys to know and love and have a relationship with.  This is stuff I have told my boys and this is stuff that I shared with my son who just married and with his fiance just a couple of weeks before they married and which I shared again with both of them just yesterday in a message to them.
   I am not happy and proud of their attitude, I know, I am saying it again...   But, I will not be a doormat and I will not tolerate them just telling me when they can come and when they can't!   I am an adult, I am a mother, I am a person and I have feeling and I am sick, I am not just a piece of garbage.  People should not treat anyone that way....   I have not meddled in their life, I have only given my honest and truthful opiniion, trying to teach them, especially my son what real and genuine love is. 

   I could post the message I sent to them.... but I will leave this for now, so sorry it was so so long.   I am struggling so so much, not sleeping, pain is so much worse, and right now I can't deal with them or this attitude and although I know I can't make them do anything, I refuse to be treated this way.  I don't want to see them, especially if this is all just dismissed!   I am not the type of person who can sit with someone, especially after repeated and repeated attitude like this and feel at ease.  Well, I should say that either, because I have, lots and lots of times...   I am a people pleaser, I love to give of my time, I love to give, but,  with an attitude that continues especially after I've talked with that person, I get fed up.  I do have to take care of myself and my health (very very hard) illness doesn't go away, pain doesn't leave, but this stuff makes it all worse.  I am the one who suffers more and many people don't understand or even care of sympathize with sickness and suffering.

    Thanks to everyone for listening....


Hi Gail and welcome.  Please take a moment to read the forum rules under "Open Me First".  It tells you what the rules of the forum are and describes how we work around here.

I also moved your post from that category to this one so people would see it.  I know you told your story about the Church events as part of the story, but we try to steer clear of religious statements due to our vast membership and various beliefs.

I know you are hurt and upset over several situations, but in reading through it, it sounds to me like most of it centers around your feelings of the unfairness of your Son and DIL spending more time with their family.  There are several of us here that understand and are in the same position. 

One thing I have learned around here and through my own issues is that I can not control others.  I can only answer for myself and what I do.  We have expectations of what life will be like with our AC, but they are truly our expectations and many times don't match up with theirs.  It sounds like even though they are spending a lot of time with her family, that they are trying to schedule some time with you. 

It also sounds like you have made them aware of your frustrations and thoughts, and now the ball is in their court.  I hope they take it well, because of my past experience, written communications usually don't go over well because they are so easy to misinterpret the real meaning due to you can't see facial expressions or hear tones in voices. 

Then again, some have had success and I hope you do too.
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell


I agree with Pooh. :-)

I am going to lock this post and hope that writing it helped you. Since this is my forum, I get to decide when I feel it is best to start over, condense and leave out religious references as well as given names. Please reread the Agreement and know that we are doing our best to meet your needs as well as ours.
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama