October 25, 2020, 05:50:07 pm

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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 - freespirit

1
My son and his family live only 10 minutes from us. But not once have I ever had either of my grandsons for even half an hour alone. The parents have forbidden us to drive the children anywhere, pick them up, or even go for walks with them. Why? Because my DIL is overly anxious, a mother smother, and a choleric basket case. And the worst part is: my son supports her sick mind.

We have our 8 year old granddaughter regularly. We've gone RVing with her, and have even traveled to other countries on vacations. These two extreme examples, as how our sons/ DILs trust us with their child/children... are so extremely opposite -- it's ridiculous.

I'm not asking them if we can take our grandsons, ( 6 and 4), on vacation. I simply asked if the older son, could come over for an afternoon, and paint some pictures with me.

My son exploded, screaming at me: "What I say is law! No way will we ever let the boys visit you alone! You may just drive off to - who knows where- with them! " 

(.... I know -- we were speechless too.)

So my question is.... How much should we grandmothers swallow, just for the sake of harmony? Frankly, I feel such an overwhelming disappointment in my son... I can't even put it into words. He had a wonderful childhood, (which he has told us many times). There is absolutely no reason for him to treat us like this, other than -- he chooses to support his wife's insecurities and panic attacks.

As much as I love my two grandsons, I feel even sorrier for them. They are smothered and crushed from her dominance.  The older one has so many different ticks, I've lost count. The younger one is terribly aggressive, and as I've mentioned in another post, my DIL has even been kicked out of a kindergarten because of her dictating angry  behavior.

My husband and I don't want to be added to their club of manipulative suckers. My youngest grandson's birthday is coming up. I can imagine they will ask us to come over, and they'll act sickly sweet, as if nothing has happened. I'm not sure what to do. What's worse? Staying in contact, and tolerating their behavior? Or breaking off all ties and hoping that someday, when my grandsons are old enough: they'll come visit us on their own--if we're lucky -- before they turn 40.  ???
2

One of the reasons I visit a site like this is because I really don't have an outlet in my private life. My friends  are so happy, have wonderful families and spouses, and when everything  appears, at  least from the outside, as story book perfect relationships,...I have problems opening up to them and  telling them how much I hurt.

In my case, my husband is not my confidant. It seems whenever I open up to him, reveal my sadness...he says the wrong thing every time. He always makes it worse. He has no compassion whatsoever.

For example: This weekend, my son planned to spend an overnight, because he had some business to attend to in our area. I was so happy to have him over, and simply have a good time with him.  Well it didn't take 10 minutes.., when all hell broke loose and he  fled from our home, slamming the front door behind him.

It was a total stupid misunderstanding on his part.  It was about the fact that we were invited to his house two days ago. It's a three hour drive...strenuous, because of all the traffic. Anyway, after just 40 minutes,  he asked us to leave, because  their new born baby was crying,  and  he said it was because  too many people were there....whatever.....So, we told him we understand, and climbed back into the car, to fight our way back through the traffic.  Okay that's the background...  now  fast forward, our son is sitting at our kitchen table digging into the pizza, when he  said it was good that we had left. (others with loud children left as well, ...but that's beside the point.)  Anyway I agreed, saying it was probably too soon to have so many visitors over, and that  his wife  may  also need more quiet. I then said, it's a shame that they live so far away, because spontaneous visits  aren't really possible. After all, for us, it's a long car drive. With that... my son started yelling at me, telling  me I'm egotistical, and what do I expect...him to move closer or something! All the while...my husband sat there and nodded in agreement, rolling his eyes, and confirming my son's statements.

I couldn't believe how he misunderstood me. I was simply stating a fact, that the distance was too far for short visits. That's all.

Well with a huff, he packed his pizza, and was gone.

And my husband?  After our son left, my husband got on me, accusing me of not keeping my mouth shut!

I have so had it.  What is with these men? They have totally misinterpreted my comment. And despite all my protests and trying to explain, which is ridiculous and demeaning, but I did.... Despite that, .... it landed on deaf ears. I am having a very hard time forgiving my husband for taking sides with our son. This isn't the first time;..it's the thousandth  time. I'm so tired of forgiving and moving on... I'm depleted.

So, I am venting to you again,...because putting this in print, and re-reading it... simply  is good for my soul. It is an outlet, and I thank you for listening.
3
I need to vent.
Lately our relationship to our two sons has gotten better. However, when I ask myself why...the answer is simple. It's because we tolerate, accept, and swallow a lot of rudeness that our sons, without giving a second thought, dish out. They happen to think it is funny, cracking jokes at our cost, laughing raucously, and discarding any sign of respect, interest in our lives, kindness, gentleness or love.

My husband and I have worked very hard all our lives, often two shifts. We are now blessed in that we have a comfortable retirement. We travel a lot, and allow ourselves many things, that our sons can't yet allow in their own lives. We made it financially possible for our boys to buy their own homes. Now we feel it's our turn to do good for us. But it truly seems that our way of life has caused resentment and jealousies. We have no other explanation as to why they treat us the way they do. For reasons, beyond me, my sons insult me much more than they insult their father. The strange thing is, though, I believe they love me in some weird bizarre way. I know some of you might say I allow their behavior.  But I don't. I get angry, tell them to stop, but it's like I'm air to them when I speak.

Today, for example, we played golf with my son and his pregnant girlfriend. During the golf game he repeatedly insulted me. He kept saying what a lousy player I am, that I have Alzheimers,... I should just forget it, - it's hopeless.  And all this in an angry demeaning manner. Of course I'm not nearly as good a player as my son. However that's beside the point.... His insults and lies were hurtful, and I felt a deep shame - especially being put down like that in front of his girl.

After the game, we went to our house, where our other son joined us with his family for a barbeque. Our six year old grandson suffers under various kinds of ticks. I simply and innocently asked if they have ever consulted a doctor. Well my older son turned on me. He told me to keep out of it, it's none of my business, they have everything under control. He was like a hissing snake. If he could, he would have lashed out at me. I saw it in his eyes.  ... All I could see was an arrogant hateful person, putting me down in front of the family. Once again my stomach knotted, my heart ached, not from son 1, this time, but from son 2.

I have a close relationship with all my grandchildren. But at this point, if someone would ask me, what is more important,.. being with my grandchildren, or discarding the verbal abuse, and not allowing  it in my life anymore. I would forfeit the time with my grandchildren,  -  to finally have peace in my life. Our grandchildren will grow older with or without us. They will go their own ways... Who knows how my loving grandchildren will turn out to be. ....  My sons were once like my grandchildren.  My sons had the priveldge of experiencing a secure and loving  upbringing. I would never have, in my wildest dreams, expected such an outcome.

Meanwhile we grow older too. And the good quality time left on this earth is limited. I don't believe God gave us life so that we hurt over and over again. I believe we need to take command of our lives and steer it in the direction of love and respect.  And if that means we need to steer away from family that hurt us...so be it.

I pray I have the strength to do it. I suppose it's like deciding to get a divorce...but this time from my children. Has anyone here ever turned their back on their family on your own accord? How was it? Did you ever regret taking such a step? Do you spend your time yearning for them, or do you breathe through and think, - free at last? ...I love the sound of those words...free at last.
4
Hello ladies.

I don't know what to do, and would really appreciate your comments.

My oldest son is married and has two young sons.

How do I describe his wife? She has two extreme sides; a slurping sugar-sweet side and a mean explosive hysterical side. She was always that way, and we could never understand what our son saw in her,...but we kept out of it.

We don't recognize our son anymore. Once an independent strong- willed, but loving man, he has turned into a withdrawn, meek, .....mouse. I really hate putting this into words. Why? Because he has a most generous loving heart, and puts himself constantly on the back burner for the sake of peace and harmony in the family.

Our two grandsons are very much a part of our lives. They are 4 and 6 years old. Our 6 year old grandson is showing signs of mental disorders. He has started smelling things, but especially his own hands. He stands in corners and counts silently to himself, and he has eating disorders. He hangs on every word his mother says, totally apprehensive and meek. The younger one is extremely aggressive, never obeys, and I honestly could never handle him alone.

My husband and I are certain that our grandsons are showing the results of her extreme upbringing. I know my DIL does not physically harm them.  She huddles over them, tucking them under her wings, can't buy them enough toys, but as soon as they act a little independently, she snaps, as in; she loses her mind, and is suddenly in their face screaming her lungs out. She does this everywhere, not just behind closed doors.

My son has crawled back into the background, sticking his head in the sand. ( I could shake him!), But the children have no place to go.  We direly feel they need to be 'rescued.' But how? We think the only person that may have anything to say is our own son. But , meanwhile , he's been so brainwashed, (I am not kidding!), he can't seem  to think for himself.  I'm afraid he will feel he has to defend her, and even worse, he would probably tell our DIL what is on our minds.

The children love being with us. We feel we are a haven of  'normality' in their unpredictable lives. But the mother is always present, (won't leave us alone with the children). No visit goes by, without her flipping out at either the children or her husband. Oh, and she has been thrown out of the kindergarten. She wanted to control the teacher, the guests that read for the children, just everything. Her reaction? She has taken the children from the school, and is looking for another school to register them in.

So, what to do? Continue watching the horror of our grandchildren slowly losing it, or risk that the parents end all contact with us? And yes, we realize she has us under her control as well. After all she is holding the lever.
It is simply awful to watch. Are our hands really tied?
5

This past weekend we had a barbeque. Family and friends, including my two adult sons were there.  Everything was happy and harmonious, till my youngest son started insulting me. My oldest son joined in, and the two simply made up stories about me being a lousy cook, a lazy person, someone who orders everyone else around and so on.  They didn't shy away from putting me down in front of friends and grandchildren. They didn't even stop when my neighbors said directly to their faces that they had a totally different image of them. My sons just continued laughing like two immature 14 year olds, thinking they were being hilarious.

Why do they do this? Needless to say, none of their claims have the slightest truth to them. I'll say it anyway, though, because it's only normal for people to think there must be some truth behind their insults.  Just the contrary, I was a devoted stay at home Mom, cooked my children two meals a day. I'm the furthest thing from lazy, in fact I built up a successful business all on my own. I'm 64, and care for my grandchildren 3-4 days a week. As far as bossing people around, I am way too considerate to ever be like that. Maybe that's it. Maybe they are jealous? As sick as that sounds, it is the only plausible reason I can think of. But still, isn't there any respect, any love? Why do they put me down, rock each up to the point of evil laughter, making a cruel game of it. They are 37 and 35 years old.  I couldn't sleep at all that night, thinking I just want to move away from this family. I don't need this....and I'm so very tired of it.

So here I am feeling mighty sorry for myself. I kept my mouth shut, for the sake of keeping a good atmosphere at the party. Besides, they were so into their insulting "thing", if I had opened my mouth they would have turned my words around and thrown them right back at me.  Honestly I would have loved to have just gotten in my car, and driven somewhere far far away.

When I complain to my husband about him not sticking up for me as well, his pat answer is; don't take it so seriously, they were just joking around. Well,...I'm not laughing,  and nobody else thought it was funny either. You know, I wonder if I should  send each one of them a copy of this post. :(
6
All I know is being a loving mother; a giving and an understanding mother; all those things, any child would want in a parent, is no guarantee that your child will feel connected to you later in his or her life. I truly believe mothers when they say; they don't have a clue as to "why" their offspring are like they are. The ugly injustice, of it all, is what's so terribly upsetting.

I remember, once, feeling sorry for myself, because of the way my son was treating me.  :'( I was sitting on our terrace, observing a bird feeding its young. I don't believe any parent works as hard as those mother birds do.  ???. And then I thought, gosh they give their all for their chicks, and for what?  Maybe we mothers are only meant to pass on our genes, and then go on with our own lives. Watching that Crazy Bird  ???? fly back and forth from her nest was like having nature tell me something;  :) Do as mother birds do: raise the young and let them fly, and don't ever expect them to come back and feed you a worm.

We will be going on a vacation with our "difficult" son. Did I say vacation? :-X You may think, oh, it can't be that bad if the son wants to spend a vacation with his parents. Believe me; he's only coming for the sake of his daughter and economical reasons. I'll be walking on egg shells. And I'm afraid world war III will break out.  :o So I need to get myself psyched, empty my brain, and think;  .... Mama bird, don't expect a thing!

The only thing I don't know how to handle, without escalation, are his insults and extreme rudeness in front of my grand daughter. That has nothing to do with expectation. I feel overwhelmed when he treats me that way and I feel extreme dislike towards him. I simply bear it for my grandchild's sake, wanting to avoid a scene in front of her, at all costs.  But frankly it does cost something. It costs my nerves, my health and my happiness.

I'm wondering if anyone knows how I can prepare myself ahead of time. Please don't suggest talking to him before we go. His chip on his shoulder is as big as he is. He would just blow up and accuse me of wanting to fight with him. I need to handle his behavior correctly when it happens. The only reason we are succumbing and taking him along on our caravan vacation is because of our granddaughter. She needs us for stability. He's a good father, but like most men, he loses his patience and can be unreasonable to our grandchild. I feel I have to be there for her.

Thank you so much for reading down to here.  :)
7
Grab Bag / Are you all happily married?
April 04, 2013, 09:14:42 am
Are you all happily married?  ??? Just wondering,...because I am having some problems. Always had them with my husband, (married 37 years), but they are getting more intense and have become more frequent. He so fits the cliché of the "grumpy old man." I know, ..I need to be above it all. I think I just gave that advice, in another post, to another member... hahaha,....but it is hard, it really is. I think it's easier to disengage from an adult child than from a partner. No?  Maybe I'm wrong. :(
8
Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Go or Stay?
March 17, 2013, 03:06:53 pm
Hello Dear Luise and members who may read this.

Just after briefly scanning through this forum, I feel I have arrived at the right place.
I have a question for you, and hope that someone may give me advice or share their story.

My question is: ... Is it better to move further away from "adult children" who carry  a grudge and seems to have a mean streak, ...
Or
does moving further away, increase the emotional stress between parents and their adult offspring?

We are in the process of downsizing and we're weighing decisions on whether to stay in the vicinity of our children or move further away...(about  a three hour drive).

My son is plagued by occasional chips on his shoulders.  His moods and attitude towards me are more hostile than loving and more hurtful than caring I am sure the only reason we are still in contact is because we occasionally take care of our 7 yr. old GD.  She is a light in our lives. For this reason, we would like to remain close by. But on the other hand, my son breaks my heart over and over again. Sometimes I would like to just spread my wings and fly far away from the hurt that he so thoughtlessly casts out, and that,... for no reason at all.

So, now that we would like to move;  - well, I suppose now is our chance to truly flee from the never ending hurt.

But in all of this; I still hope, that he may, through our absence, realize what he had in us. It will be heartbreaking not to see our grandchild as often, but between the two choices; the pain and shunning from our son is the worse of the two evils.

What makes this so difficult is, it means, we would leave our other son, his family with two baby sons, to whom we have a wonderful relationship with.

I tend to want to move far away; in a beautiful area, where we can start to live for ourselves, and not be emotionally manipulated through our son. My husband would prefer to stay in our neighbourhood, because of the contact with the grandchildren. I can understand, it will hurt me too to leave;...but I can't take the cruel treatment any longer.

Go or stay? That is the question.