I have two daughters that are 10 years apart. My oldest started having behavioral problems when my youngest was born. We figured it was normal and did the best we could to deal with it. Now my oldest is now 31, a single mom of 2, and lives about 45 minutes away with my youngest daughter in a house that my husband and I own. The only thing that we ask is that she pay the mortgage (which is half of what the going rent is in that area)and keep the house up which she struggles to do. I receive very little communication from her unless she needs money or a favor of some sort. I tried expressing that I would like to spend more time with her and my grandchildren as I felt our relationship had become a bit distant over the years. She tells me that she doesn't want to sound mean and then implies that I was a terrible mother and brings up things from her childhood that never took place. Then she blames me for not taking her on vacations when she was young like her friends parents did and so on. I explained that unlike some we actually lived within our means which on a couple of occasions when employment was lost saved us from losing our home. All she seems to focus on is what we didn't provide her. She acts as if we were absent parents while she was growing up which isn't true at all. My youngest doesn't share in her views and is actually wanting to move closer to my husband and I. I struggle with not giving up on trying to have a better relationship with her. My relationship with my mother is nonexistent and I didn't want the same for us but I almost feel like I am forcing the issue.
You're telling my story! Our situations are 95% identical. I have 2 children, 10 years apart, one of them (married daughter, her husband and our only grandchild) living in our planned retirement property that we put her into when she told us she was pregnant. We did it to help her out because with a baby on the way and his unstable work, it would have been difficult.
Like you they are living rent free and won't even help with simple things, but worst of all, are keeping us from the baby threatening that if we try to evict them we'll never see her again, but we don't see her much now!
My daughter blames me for not having friends because I wouldn't let her go out late at night. She blames me for not paying her enough attention, not taking her to fun places unlike her husband's mother, who is wonderful and more like a friend to get SIL and hates that we weren't like them.
Seems that apart from the blatant lies and delusional episodes my daughter suffers memory loss too, and has completely dismissed repeated trips to Disneyland, the snow, the beach, the zoo etc.
Maybe I imagined those effects???
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Wow! What a horrid situation! Unfortunately I have nothing to offer to "fix" it. My DS eventually came around once I completely pulled back (and I do mean completely, financially and emotionally) and we now have a developing relationship. However your situation reminds me more of the situation that my DH has with his sister and she had with my MIL. She was the eldest and has always resented her siblings just for being born. She even told my DH's younger sister (while she was in her 60s!) that she should have been an only child. How do you do that? I can never figure that one out! Anyway she never changed. She is now retired and should be over the less than 20 years she spent with her siblings but she still resents him. She even took advantage of her demented mother during her mother's last years (until my DH stepped in and stopped it).
So how do you deal with this? The same way as the rest of us. I finally had enough of being mistreated and I decided that trying my best to hang on to a relationship with my DS/ GC was not worth the abuse I was receiving. That by tolerating it I was teaching my grands that it was OK to treat me (and other people) like that. I decided that I deserved to enjoy my life and I could do that with or without my DS/GC. Once I decided that I started focusing on the things in my life that brought me happiness. When my thoughts turned my DS I would forcefully wrench them back to the things in my life that I enjoy. My mantras became:
No news is good news
Not my circus, not my monkeys
What you focus on expands
It took a long time and I revisited what I now call "The Abyss" many times and had to pull my thoughts back, but the more I pulled myself back the easier it got. Things turned around for me long before my relationship with my DS improved. I started enjoying my life! What a relief!!
You deserve to enjoy your "after parenting" years! Hugs!