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"Welcome to WiseWomenUnite.com -- When adult children marry and leave home, life can sometimes get more complex instead of simpler.  Being a mother-in-law or daughter-in-law can be tough.  How do we extend love and support to our mothers-in-law, adult children, daughters-in-law, sons-in-law, and grandchildren without interfering?  What do we do when there are communication problems?  How can we ask for help when we need it without being a burden?  And how do our family members feel about these issues?  We invite you to join our free forum, read some posts... and when you're ready...share your challenges and wisdom."

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Topics - Lillycache

Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Time for an update
December 01, 2015, 08:01:26 am
I posted this in this section on December 12th 2014 in the thread "I knew it would come to this"

QuoteFriends... I need encouragement.   I am not going to write a book..  I'm going to give you a few sentences.. It will suffice.

As some of you know, I have an adult son, age 45 that has lived with my husband and I since he got out of the military 10 years ago.   He is an alcoholic.  He can barely keep himself clean or keep up his room, or continue to hold a part time job.  Which he does.. but to buy booze.   I had to have him physically removed from my home last Sunday as he was out of control.   He currently is in a VA facility.  This is his 2nd stay at rehab this year.   I have told him he cannot return to my home..  I am petrified what will happen to him... I am sad.... I am sick to my stomach and to my heart.  Did I do the right thing?   How do I stay strong.. ??    He is begging to come home..  I just cannot have him here... but I cannot let him die in the streets..   He is a wonderful person.. sober.. but not when he is drunk..  I cannot chance it.  but I need strength.

It's almost a year to the day... and what a difference a year makes.  My son has gone through the program at the VA.  Lived this last year in a homeless veterans shelter and concentrated on staying sober.  He will have one year of sobriety on December 7th.. just six days from today.   Since then:

He has found a good job with the help of the VA counselors

Put some money away

Found a nice apartment and is now living on his own

I would have never thought it possible one year ago.  Of course I am still cautiously optimistic and know that trouble is only one drink away.  So I encourage him to continue to be active in AA.. and to continue to stay sober.  The rest is now up to him.
Grab Bag / So Trivial to me now..
August 13, 2015, 05:48:34 am
My husband was just diagnosed with Cancer.    We are keeping positive and feel we are in good hands with his doctors and our treatment plan..   But.. now as I sit here thinking of all the time I wasted being angry and hurt and stewing over what my DIL and DS did or didn't do.. or what they said, or implied,   I feel a little foolish.    All wasted time when I should have been devoting myself to my husband and to our marriage..  Only that was important...  only that did I really have control over.   Now.. even control over that is out of my hands and up to God and medical care.   I do know one thing,  I am going to make the most of every second we have together.. for as long or as short of a time we do.   NO MORE WASTING emotion on those who simply don't care, and who I have learned to care less about.  No more rehashing old slights or caring about how things SHOULD have been but weren't.   It's only the present we really have isn't it?    So we should make the most of it.   
Six months ago I posted about having had to have police remove my adult son from my home, due to violence and severe alcoholism.   It has been very difficult, and there for a while he used every manipulative trick in the book to get me to let him come home..  However, I refused.  It was the hardest thing I have had to do. 

He has remained at a large Veterans hospital campus, and is presently residing in a homeless veterans shelter.  With intense treatment and constant encouragement, he has remained sober.   As with most alcoholics, he is in debt and has had collection agencies hounding him for payment.  A few weeks ago, a distant relative passed away, leaving him a small amount of money, which he has used to settle his debt with creditors.  He actually took the initiative to call them and negotiate a settlement.  So by the end of the month he will officially be debt free, except for a student loan, which he has managed to apply for and get an forbearance due to hardship.   The point is HE DID this HIMSELF..  I am so overwhelmed and grateful..

Now he is in the process of completing a Compensated Work Therapy program at the VA.  He will be assigned a six month paid position inside the hospital while he looks for other permanent employment.  He is also eligible for subsidized housing through VA.   I remain cautiously optimistic, but more and more I am seeing a future for him, one that I could not imagine just 6 months ago.  He certainly is an entirely different person without alcohol, although we both realize that he is and always be an alcoholic and relapse is only one drink away.  Scary.. but I am looking at only one day at a time.  There just may be a rainbow at the end of this storm. 
Friends... I need encouragement.   I am not going to write a book..  I'm going to give you a few sentences.. It will suffice.

As some of you know, I have an adult son, age 45 that has lived with my husband and I since he got out of the military 10 years ago.   He is an alcoholic.  He can barely keep himself clean or keep up his room, or continue to hold a part time job.  Which he does.. but to buy booze.   I had to have him physically removed from my home last Sunday as he was out of control.   He currently is in a VA facility.  This is his 2nd stay at rehab this year.   I have told him he cannot return to my home..  I am petrified what will happen to him... I am sad.... I am sick to my stomach and to my heart.  Did I do the right thing?   How do I stay strong.. ??    He is begging to come home..  I just cannot have him here... but I cannot let him die in the streets..   He is a wonderful person.. sober.. but not when he is drunk..  I cannot chance it.  but I need strength.
Grab Bag / Too Selfish?
August 26, 2014, 08:07:00 am
We all have strived to love ourselves... and to make a life for ourselves with interests and friends that love us... in order to deal with the hurt and disappointments dealt to us by our ACs and/or their spouses.   We have been told to give up our expectations, or to at least realize that no one is obligated to meet them.. and move on.   So..  Some of us have.

My question..  Sometimes I wonder if I am becoming too selfish.. or self absorbed.  I find myself thinking only about ME.. and what will make me happy.   I sometimes don't give my son or my grandkids a thought for weeks.  I seem to be all about me now and frequently, my husband.  I worry about this.  It doesn't feel right to me... but what is the alternative?  Going back to weeping and gnashing my teeth over the unfairness of things?   Not sure I'm making myself clear, but these are just some thoughts I have had of late.
Grandchildren / Out of the Mouths of Babes
May 27, 2014, 12:07:53 pm
My Son brought  my GKs over for a visit last Saturday.  The little guy will turn four next month, and since I will not see him for his birthday.. I gave him his birthday present..  He was talking about the present and telling us something about what his REAL grandma had at her house..   My son glossed over it , but the little guy was not to be distracted and he kept trying to make us all understand what his REAL GRANDMA had .... he was getting frustrated and kept saying YOU KNOW... My REAL Grandma!!!      I let it go... and didn't say anything.. I pretended not to understand what he was saying..  Of course he was talking about my DIL 's mother.   You have to wonder if that is what he was told..  the she is his REAL grandma... as opposed to me.... the fake one..  Or if it's just something he came up with.   Best not to know.. I suppose.  what good would it do anyway.   I'm not really upset...  Just thought I'd share.. 
I just had a conversation with a coworker, and of course the obligatory... "How was your Mothers Day" came up.   This woman has a son and a daughter... both married.  Both her ACs and their spouses spent the entire day with her and her DH having a nice barbeque.   I asked.. Don't your kids go th their MILs house on Mother's day?   She replied that her DILs mom is deceased so that is not an issue.   Her daughter prefers to be with her because she likes her food better and usually drops in at her MILs for a few minutes on Mothers Day.   This year, however,  her MIL fixed a dinner and had them over a week ago.   I asked her if she didn't think that the MIL would like more time with her son on Mothers Day and is settling for having a day with him a week earlier and not on Mothers Day?  Stopping in for a few minutes is hardly the same.   She told me she never even thought of that.    So I have to wonder if some of the one sided unfairness is just a matter of not even considering the feelings of others..  Just total oblivion to how it may hurt the other side, and NOT malicious selfishness.   It is of course selfish not to think of that, but I guess oblivion is better than maliciousness and deliberate exclusion.  Is it better to be mean or simply thoughtless?  lol! 
Just had word that my older sons is on his way to inpatient Rehab for alcohol withdrawal.  He is 44..   For years he has struggled.  I have had no choice but to sit by and watch.  I had resigned myself to the fact that he would eventually drink himself to death...   I had to give him a safe place to do it in.  One can only beg, plead, or threaten so much.   However, last night he had a psychotic epidsode during a drunken rage and made some threats to my husband.    When he sobered up.. I told him he had a choice..  He could live here, or he could drink... but not both.  He just received a call back  from the VA hospital that they would take him into their program.   I'm numb.   Simply numb.   I can't feel anything.  Not hope.. not sadness.   I have had the life sucked out of me by him since he began drinking at 15.   I've had hopes many times before, only to have them dashed.   Kind thoughts.. words... anything you have for me.   I'll take prayers too... but those have never worked for me.     
It's been three years now since DIL and I became completely estranged.  I have been luckier than most in that my son has kept up contact, such as it is, and has brought his kids over to see me a few times a year.   However, as more time goes on, the less I look forward to the visits and the contact.   When he and the kids come for a visit, there is really very little to talk about.  Most of my attempts as conversation are met with one or two words... like.. "fine".... or "Nothing"   I try to engage the kids in conversation about school, friends.. interests.. but get the same answers.   They are 11, 9, and 3. One would think at those ages they would be filled with "news" for grandma.     My son is the same.  He keeps his nose in his Iphone while visiting and I am expected to visit with his kids..  Truth is.. they all bore me now and I usually can't wait for them to leave.   Is that horrible?    I feel like all I'm there for is a meal and presents, as his visits are usually timed around birthdays or holidays..  So they come by.  I cook... I give presents.... they make a mess and leave.  Last time I took them all out to eat.. and it was the same thing. Me trying to make conversation and being stonewalled.

YET..  on the otherhand..I love my son and his kids and I'm not ready to tell my son to stay away..but I almost dread him calling to say he is coming by.   So I guess this is how this "grandmother" thing is meant to be for me.  It's not a whole lot of fun, and they don't really feel like my family.   Guess DIL has won after all.   Anyone else feel like this... or am I an odd callous old bird?
Grab Bag / So very weird
September 10, 2013, 05:30:12 am
Back in July I posted that my Ex-husband's wife had died and that my DH and I attended the wake.  A few weeks after that he sent both DH and I a friend request on FB.  We accepted.  He has been posting all sorts of things in his status about missing and loving her and wanting to hold and kiss her.  I guess that's normal, but considering he left me and our sons for this woman.. it's kind of ummm... I don't know the word... sickening?     NOW he is contacting me in PM and asking for advise and comfort on how to cope with his grief.  I guess the fact that I was widowed 11 years ago has gotten him thinking I'm an expert at it.   So I've tried to "comfort" him and say all the right things..   However, that part of me that remembers what it was like to find out my husband of nearly 10 years had been cheating on me with that woman and was madly in love with her is still there.    I want to tell him to snap the heck out of it.. because if he had learned how to deal with losses like I have he wouldn't be so debilitated..   I have had many losses in my life.  Him.. my 2nd husband.. may family... my grandkids... I guess through that I learned to develop a sense of self and strength.   He on the other hand is looking to "end it all" as he put it  yesterday.    I guess I should have more sympathy for him... and I suppose I do.... but the irony of all this is too much to bear.    He has thanked me for being willing to talk to him and comfort him "after all these years"  I wonder if the irony is or isn't lost on him.
Grab Bag / My Ex-husband's wife has died
July 02, 2013, 06:33:25 am
I am a bundle of emotion this morning and unable to figure out where to put this.   Last night, my younger son called me to tell he he had received a call from his half-brother.  Apparently he found his mother on the bathroom floor, blue and not breathing.  He called 911 and they took her to the hospital.. it didn't look good.  About an hour later my son called back to tell me she had died. 

WOW..  so a bit of the background.   When I was married to my 1st husband and my boys were just 4 and 6 years old.. he was caught cheating on me with her.. She was 7 years younger than me... which made her only 20.   We divorced.. and shortly afterward he married her.. they went on to have 2 kids together.   She was never very nice to my boys when they went to visit their father.. she would yell at them, or completely ignore them and make them watch TV in the bedroom out of her sight.  I blame my Ex for letting her behave that way.. Needless to say there were years of annimosity and anger. 

Then after many years... my younger son married and we were thrown at various occasions.. my son's wedding.. the birth of his kids.. the christenings.. Some holidays at their house.. and we seemed to get along fine.  We even had some good times and some laughts... All the turmoil was ancient history.  When my 2nd husband died.. my Ex and his wife came to his wake and stayed several hours.. Of course since my split with my DIL.. I have not had contact with them for several years.

I lay awake most of last night with 35 years of history spinning through my head.  There was a time I hated her and cursed the ground she walked on.. Then.. not so much..  I feel sorry a 56 year old woman had to die.... I even feel sorry for my Ex.. as I know exactly what his is experiencing... as I have lived it..  I have such conflicted feelings.... I don't know where to put them.   I also wonder WHY I am still doing the 9 to 5 rat race... I should be home enjoying my home and my animals and my life in general instead of putting up with the petty annoyances and aggravation here at work..   None of this even seems important... I wonder why I have let it get to me.. Life is so short.. and can end in an instant.... as I have been reminded of once again.  Thanks for listening... I just needed to type this out and look at it..
I would like to bring up a topic for discussion and advise..  It probabley is an uncomfortable topic so Louise if it is in anyway inappropriate please lock or delete.. However, I do not intend this to incite or upset.. It's MY problem I realize that and I am working on it.. Maybe I can get some insight from others who feel this way and how they handle it.

  I was incredibley hurt by a mean and vengeful DIL..as well as her family.   In fact I don't refer to her as my DIL... but only as the person my son is married to.  I don't refer to her family at all, except.  I believe I have put that behind me and gone on with my life.  I have a somewhat acceptable relationship with my Son and my GKs, although I realize that I am and always will be only a marginal figure in their lives.  I see them maybe 3 or 4 times a year, and because of the rift between their mother an I, there is no contact between those times.   It shouldn't be this way, and the unfairness of it all still galls me.

Because of that, and the horrible taste left in my mouth.. I have a very difficult time responding to or offering advise and comfort to the DILs that come here, or even to the mothers of girls that have issues with their SILs parents.  It's really hard for me..  SO.. I usually do not respond, so as to not inadvertantly say anything hurtful or unpleasant... AND it's not just this forum.. it's IRL also.  If I hear a DIL complaining about her MIL... or someone complaining about their SILs parents, I have to fight the urge to come out with a snarky remark.   Trust me.. I KNOW these people are not MY DIL or her foo..   My HEAD knows that.. it certainly does.. but my heart and emotions say otherwise, and I fight the urge to strike out at them.   I try SOO hard, but it's very difficult.   How have many of you been able to overcome that, and more importantly HOW?     

And up front to any DIL reading this... I KNOW this is my problem.  I'm being honest here, and  I suspect that for just this reason, many forums.. tend to be.. well..... less than supportive..  Is it ever possible to separate oneself?   I'm interested in other's feelings and perceptions.

Between  STILL not hearing from DS2 (guess he WAS PO'd at me not going to the communion... or his is more self centered than I even imagined)   AND having my head bitten off by DS1  ( an alcoholic in active recovery) for simply asking a question..    I'm thinking that If I knew then what I know now... I wouldn't have even had any kids.   Seriously... who needs this aggravation?  It's just not been worth it.
I have to admit that I don't  call my son.  I wait for him to call me.   I'm not sure how that started.   I think in the beginning it was to not be clingy or intrusive on his personal life or his marriage.  I always seemed to manage to call at the wrong time.  He was busy, or in the middle of dinner, or putting the kids to bed.... OR... just plain didn't feel like talking.   Then after  WIII with DIL, I for sure haven't initiated a call.   I have found that if I wait for him to call me... he will do so when he feels like chatting or making plans. Which is better.   BUT.. I worry that I may be giving him the impression that I don't care.. Which is not at all true.   Why can't things be easy and lighthearted  when it comes to our ACs?   Why do we have to always analyse every action and move.   One would think that after giving birth to someone and raising them that it would be the most natural thing in the world to be able to pick up the phone whenever one felt like it.  But.. it's not..  At least not with boys..  Perhaps moms with girls have an easier time with this.
Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Just Checking...
April 29, 2013, 05:04:32 am
When someome says to you... "I'll call you during the week and pick out a day for us to come visit next weekend"  What does that mean to you?    To me it means... "I'll call  you during the week and a date for a visit for the following weekend would be set"..   Hmmm?   Am I wrong?    I guess I am..   No call... no visit..  from DS and the GKs.   I know he is alive as he's posting on FB.   I really thought it was pretty much a done deal..  It always used to be..  So I went out and bought all the ingredients for a nice dinner.. and bought the kids some presents.. particularly my GD for her First Communion.   I guess I can't say I'm really surprised... DS can be thoughtless and self centered.   I was just checking my reality again.  I tend to do that.    I suppose it just re-enforces the fact that I am on the perifery and not a mainstream relative..... THAT position is filled by the Grand ole FOO.   No big dilemma here to solve.. just a minor vent and foot stomp.
Hello everyone!   Just stopped by to run this past all of you wise women.  If you remember, my DIL and I had a HUGE falling out 3 years ago.  I was not allowed to see my Grandchildren for almost a year.  I was not invited to the GS3's first birthday, my GS1's first Communion, holidays and other occasions.  My son finally got her permission to bring the kids around to see me and I have been seeing them about 3 or 4 times a year now.  I've been fine with that..  I've enjoyed seeing them when I could, and haven't really been missing the interaction between myself and my DIL... which was quite odd toward the end.

Anyway... Saturday, in the mail, was an invitation to my Granddaughters first Communion.  There was one for myself and dh.. and a separate on for my older son.  I am quite confused by this.   Why now?  Why bother?  I have had no contact with DIL in 3 years.  I have just about made up my mind that I am not attending.  Why would I want to put myself in the position of being uncomfortable knowing my every move,  my every facial expression, my every word was being mentally recorded and critiqued by my DIL and her Mother and her Aunt?  And knowing more than likely it would be plastered all over her favorite discussion groups for review and ridicule.  I just don't care that much anymore about being included in her extended family and have been quite satisfied with how things are now.   I guess I just wanted your input..  Am I being callous.. or mean... or anything that I shouldn't be?
Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / I'm listening
October 09, 2012, 07:15:30 am
Quote from: Pen on October 08, 2012, 05:27:49 pm
Thanks, guys. I know it isn't the end of the world. My anger & pain will subside, the sadness may take awhile.

DS used to visit alone, and occasionally we'd see him in his town alone. Not so much now...he promises to come over, but never shows. He invited me to stop by once but DIL got home early & he weirded out so I left. We don't have GC yet, thank goodness. I've been preparing to be the left-out GM anyway, already got that memo.

I'm sorry..  I know all about the Left-out GM syndrome.  If it's any consolation... at least you can brace yourself in preparation.  You will not be completely gob-smacked by it and looking like a fool when you object to it.   As time passes, the anger fades, and the unfairness becomes just another fact of life.  I am sure your son will do what he can to let you have some access to his children. As I have learned.. you take what you can get in that regard.
I don't care how old they get.   My son is unhappy.  He has been on antidepresants for over a year.  He just told me that he wishes his doctor would increase his dose so he could no longer feel emotion of any kind.  I could not go into it with him..  I believe I know what is troubling him.  I cannot help him.  I.  cannot give advise. My advise would be biased.  But he worries me..  His desire to no longer feel anything is frightening.   What can I do?  Just sit an wait.
Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Why I don't call.
September 17, 2012, 07:30:09 am
My son has repeatedly told me that even though he only calls me every few months, I can call him on his cell anytime.  AND I don't.   I have told him the usual excuses of not wanting to bother him.  Not knowing if it was a good time or not.  Not knowing his work schedule....Not wanting to talk to him with DIL in the background...etc etc etc.

The truth of the matter is... I don't really like talking to him since the estrangement.  There really is nothing to talk about.  He has to be very cautious in what he tells me and I am pretty much out of the loop in his day to day life or that of his children.  It's pretty hard after two months to start chit chat.  It saddens me.  And it makes me sadder after contact with him that things are the way they are.  I have even gotten to where, when I know it's about time for his obligatory call, I dread when the phone rings.  I cannot react to him as I would an acquaintance I haven't heard from in a while.  He is NOT an acquaintance.... he is my son.  Having no relationship seems better at times than having this superficial one.   He is no longer family except by accident of birth. 
Grab Bag / Mitochondrial DNA
August 29, 2012, 11:19:41 am
What is it?  It's the very smallest chain of DNA located with the organelle of a cell called the Mitochondria. The Mitochondria is responsible for turning food and oxygen into energy.  It's the engine so to speak.  The reason I brought this up is because this tiny piece of our humanness is inherited SOLELY from the mother. 

So I got to thinking about my own MDNA.  I have a picture on my desk of the 4 generations of women that proceded me.  My Great- Great Grandmother Carolina who immigrated from Germany in the 1880's with her husband and children.   Her youngest child my Great Grandmother Anna, a newborn at the time,  was smuggled aboard the ship in a hatbox.   Anna went on to marry and have five children.  Her oldest girl was my Grandmother Lydia.  Lydia born in 1905.  She lived through the roaring 20's was a flapper.  I have a picture of her in her 1920's style dresses and hats.  She never went highschool.  She went to work in a book bindry at the age of 14.  She married and had my mom in 1924.  Divorced my moms dad in 1935 and remarried in 1939.  Pretty unheard of in that day.  She worked as a bindry girl until she retired.  As I looked at her for the final time... her 3 fingers, index, middle and ring... were bent sideways at the first knuckle from 50 years of pushing books through the binder.    My mom was an only child.  Her baby brother died at 3 months of age.  She graduated from the same Highschool I eventually went to.  Worked at the telephone company until she married my dad in 1947 and I was born in 1949.

That's the lineage boiled down in a nutshell.  I have no knowlege of the women that proceeded Carolina. That history was never passed along to me.   But what gives me pause is that there will be no more of us.   My Mitochondrial DNA will cease to exist when my sons pass away.  I passed it along to them, but they did not pass it to their children as it comes only from ones mother.  Since I never had a daughter, my sons are the end of my lineage as far as this tiny piece goes.  It never seemed important before, but somehow now it saddens me. Maybe this microscopic genome is why there is a special bond with ones children.  A bond that fathers may come close to but never seem to duplicate.