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dil's mom

Started by gettingoldandcranky, July 05, 2013, 08:04:18 am

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my dil's mom is a major part of her life.  she stays with ds, dil, and gb's often and for long periods of time(weeks) in their home.  she is really like a 2nd mom to grands.   we live a drive away.  if dil's mom is there, we are told we can't visit she is there.

we are visited in our home maybe 4 - 5 times.  majority of these times, dil's mom comes too.  she chatters constantly and we don't get to visit w/ds and dil and kids the way we could if she is not there.
there is no "polite" way to stop this.  any suggestions how to deal with this?  tired of gritting my teeth and smiling....


Did we welcome you, G? If not, WELCOME!  :) Please go to our Home Page and under Open Me First, read the three posts there for "Newbies" to be sure WWU is a fit. We're a monitored site and our Forum Agreement is a big part of that. Regarding today's post, what jumps up at me, of course, is that you are not welcome at their place if DIL's mom is on one of her lengthy and frequent visits there but when they visit you, the same rule is not in effect. My guess is that you would upset the applecart of you pointed that out and set the same boundary in reverse. No wonder you are gritting your teeth! That said, I think that if you took a stand, you would lose in the long run. I personally, when I had a home instead of a studio apartment, never had anyone there that I didn't personally invite and enjoy...but, I was never in your shoes and honestly have no idea how I would cope. If it's that or nothing...all I can think of is for you to come here and rant and let go as best you can. Sending love...
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama


hello gettingoldandcranky - I think that if you calmly explain to both dil and ds together, how important and lovely it is for dil's mom to spend time alone with the grandkids, and how you and husband would also love to have this opportunity more often - and to do so without betraying the frustration you understandably have with the current conditions - dil and ds may see this as a loving and caring request on your part. 
The main thing is not to alienate both dil and ds with hard feelings at the current situation (even though it is a tough and unfair situation for you). Sometimes I think that if we keep on letting people treat us a certain unfair way and we don't speak up, they will convince themselves that we are fine with it after all.  But then again, sometimes speaking up will be taken advantage of and used against us.  Good luck!


Kilkenny, welcome to the site. If you haven't already done so, please read the pink-highlighted items under Open Me First on the home page. We ask this of all new members to make sure the site is a good fit.

Thanks for your thoughtful post. Some of us are in situations that could go either way if we speak up, even if we're calm in our delivery. I guess each of us has to decide for ourselves what we're willing to risk if our words are turned against us. It depends on the parties involved and the frustration/emotional abuse level we've reached, I reckon.
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb


I agree with you Pen, we do take a risk when we decide to speak up against unfair treatment. Perhaps dealing with the problem early on (speaking up), before the emotional abuse and frustration goes on for too long, might make it an easier situation to change?  But as you say, it depends on the parties involved. I also think it depends on the maturity level of the dil, in this case, and the maturity level of the ds to understand that alone time with the grandkids is desired and deserved by both sets of grandparents. 


turn's out another family member asked ds NOT to bring his mil and she still came.
and, to top things off, they stopped and ate fast food before coming, didn't eat anything but fruit and, when leaving, made mention of how hungry they were (dil and her mom) and they were anxious to get home to have dinner,
rude, rude, rude.  hardly worth the fun time we had w/grands


Welcome and I'm with Luise, the first thing that jumped off the page at me was that you couldn't visit if M was there, but she comes to your house?  I also agree with Pen about each person has to decide if they are willing to risk the relationship by saying something.  I'm the type that would, simply because I see how doing things always on their terms is not a relationship to me, it's one sided. 

That being said, I was tired of the one-sided treatment and I did lose the relationship with DS and GD.  It stinks, but there comes a point in life where everyone has their breaking point, even when it comes to your own child.  I accept it for what it is and am grateful for those relationships that are mutual.
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell


Is it possible for you and DH to divide and conquer?  Could you set up for one of you to sit with DIL/MIL/AS in the living room visiting whilst the other one is playing with the kids in the backyard or kitchen or something? 

The first image I had in mind when thinking about speaking up was a scenario where AS and family are getting ready to visit and one of the GC says "Isn't GM Mary coming?" and DIL says, "Oh no, GM Jane doesn't want GM Mary to come along anymore."  Or one of the GC overhearing DIL and MIL or DIL and AS talking about the situation and you coming across as a meanie that doesn't want poor, poor, poor GM Mary along.  This might not happen, but I'd be afraid of losing too much.  Before speaking up I'd try to work around the other GM always being along.  Whether trying my suggestion above or brainstorming other things. 

Good luck. 


I know how you feel.  When it comes to family situations with our DIL, we are put on the back burner as well.

I know taking the self pity, "oh nobody cares how I feel" route, can worsen things. Therefore, I am personally waiting it out. I'm waiting for my grandsons to be old enough to state their own wishes to visit us.  I don't care if I have to wait till they are 14 years old. Someday they will be free to come and go as they please, and my door will always be open for them.

We raised our granddaughter the first four years of her life, and although we are deeply connected to her, she doesn't remember anything from that time. She doesn't even remember that she lived with us.

So,...what am I saying here?

I'm saying let the other grandmother do her thing...If the grandchildren are small,  they won't remember all her sacrifices and loving anyway. .... You will always be THE special grandmother, and not the day to day grandmaw,...and like everything else, the one less seen is the more interesting person. When your grandchildren are ready to spread their wings and discover what is outside of their confining nest,...you may be the first one they think of "escaping" too.

So I suggest, when you do get to see the little ones, show them how much you love them. Let them know you will always be there for them, and just be the fun loving grandmaw. And if the other grandmother want to monopolize your time with conversation,  just ask her to understand that you want to play with the children now, and turn your back to her. No big talk - no big deal.

The other grandmaw, as you said is like a second mother,...so you have the privilege of being the spoiling grandmother all to yourself, and THAT the children will remember forever.
The greatest thing in the world is to know how to belong to oneself.
            -- Michel de Montaigne