Author Topic: I'm afraid I'm losing my son  (Read 10365 times)

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Offline Lauren

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I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« on: November 28, 2013, 09:41:43 PM »
Hi everyone,
I'm new here and I'm hoping to get some insight into my situation. My son and I used to be very close until recently. He moved to Europe with his wife soon after they got married 15 years ago. Since then I've always visited them twice a year for 10 days each time and I call my son on the phone every Sunday morning. I've never liked my daughter in law but I have always insisted that the whole family is together at all times when I'm there because I only see them twice a year so I want all of us to spend as much time together as possible. My son used to support me in this and whenever his wife tried to go places by herself, he would make her stay with me and she acted friendly to me even though I could sense it was all fake. All of this has changed and now I hardly see her and the children when I visit because the whole time I'm there she is gone. She makes herself very busy and my grandchildren spend a lot of time in their rooms when I'm visiting. My son seems annoyed with my visits and calls and I'm devastated. Since he moved away he only calls me on my birthday and mother's day, the rest of the time it has always been me calling but now it seems like he can't wait to get off the phone when I call on Sundays. Is his wife putting him against me? Thank you for any advice.

Offline luise.volta

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2013, 10:19:06 PM »
Welcome - We ask all new members to go to our HomePage and under Open Me First to read the posts there. Please pay special attention to the Forum Agreement to be sure WWU is a fit. We're a monitored Website.

My take is that they are making it clear that they don't want the visits or the phone calls to continue. It's up to them because, as adults they have the right to set their own boundaries. Your job is done and your authority no longer exists. When visiting, insisting on anything in someone else's home is something that could cause resentment. I feel that it was your DIL's choice whether she wanted to be with you at all times or not. We can't change others or expect them to share our values. In addition, our expectations, no matter how reasonable, belong to us and no one is obligated to meet them.

I would accept their mandate, not fight it. All that would probably bring would be further resentment. I would suggest you start redirecting your life...find what else matters to you and start giving yourself the opportunity to move on.
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Offline Lauren

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2013, 10:40:41 AM »
I'm sorry I posted on the wrong area, I should have gone to the home page first. Thank you Luise for responding. It is very hard to accept their decision if it is that they don't want anything to do with me anymore. It seems unfair to end up here after raising my child.

Offline luise.volta

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2013, 11:46:38 AM »
You posted in the right area. We just direct all l new members to our info page. All is well.  :)

A great deal that was connected with my own healing was about accepting that life could be unfair and my expectations didn't matter to my eldest son. It was just too painful to acknowledge much less adjust to at first. However, my own sadness was destroying the quality of my life and I deserved better. Eventually, I choose to give a better life to myself by having things be the way they were...and then turning toward what I wanted the rest of my life to be about, beyond pain and loss. There are many members here in our little community who have faced this issue...and many of us have moved through it in our own way. As others share, you will get other perspectives. The ones who get stuck in the injustice and self-pity are the ones who pay the highest price, it seems to me. We all go there...we have to be honest and feel what we feel. Beyond that, however, lies our healing. Sending love...
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Offline Sunny

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2013, 11:55:12 AM »
Welcome Lauren! I'm sorry you have family problems that have led you to this community, but this is a wonderful place to let it all out :)

I am going to guess that your son's marriage may be in trouble, and that is why the changes in behavior of both him and his wife. If they were married about 15 years ago, then the children may be nearing teenage years and they may also be having a heap of difficulty with their children that you don't know about. Those can be tough years for people on every front, and dealing with extended family on top of all the difficulties of day to day life can fall into the too hard basket. It is really about them, and not about us once they are grown-up, and it sure hurts at times.

Some people here have found it useful to take a step back from their adult children, and stop pushing for contact. Once the pressure is off, after a while some AC will re-engage with their parents of their own volition. Maybe you could stop the visits for now, or make them shorter and offer to stay at a hotel to take the strain off everyone. You could also consider saying to your son that he seems busy and distracted when you phone, and you would be willing to leave him to make contact when it suits him. For whatever reason, he is seeing you as a burden he doesn't have time for at the moment, so as Luise says, best develop your own life for now. Changing your life is hard in the beginning, but very rewarding in the long run.


Offline Lauren

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2013, 12:38:48 PM »
Thank you Luise and Sunny. From what I've seen, they don't seem to be having problems with each other, it looks more like they don't have a place in their lives for me anymore. They act loving towards each other while ignoring me and acting annoyed that I'm there or that I'm calling. My son doesn't even try to help me with his wife anymore and she just disrespects me by being gone all the time while I'm there visiting. I have tried skipping a couple of phone calls but it has become very clear that if I don't call, I simply won't hear from them at all. It is a very tough position to be in.

Offline luise.volta

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2013, 12:53:18 PM »
Many of us here know where you are. Skipping calls and eventually stopping them and all visits was what my DS wanted from me. I finally got to where I could do that and see it as respecting him but it didn't come overnight...or help me with his disrespect. It was a long, long road back to having a full and satisfying life. I couldn't even start before I got to where I could have things be the way there were instead of anguishing over how I wanted, expected, hoped they would be.

My grandsons came back into my life after they were adults (I'm 86 years old) and I have a GREAT granddaughter in college!  :D

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Offline jdtm

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2013, 02:15:07 PM »
Quote
They act loving towards each other while ignoring me and acting annoyed that I'm there or that I'm calling.

What is it that Shakespeare said in Hamlet - "The lady doth protest too much, methinks"  - I'm going to agree with Sunny on this one; however, it really doesn't matter that much when you are not "wanted".  So sorry ....

evergreen

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2013, 03:10:33 PM »
I feel that you are in the wrong here. You say you never liked your DIL. Don't you think she knows that? Don't you think it is obvious and hurtful to her and your son and their children? I also think visiting for up to ten days at a time in your son and DIL's home is a bit much. You should have stayed in a hotel.

« Last Edit: November 29, 2013, 03:24:25 PM by luise.volta »

Offline luise.volta

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2013, 03:21:45 PM »
Welcome, E -  We ask all new members to go to our HomePage and under Open Me First to read the posts there. Please pay special attention to the Forum Agreement to be sure WWU is a fit. We're a monitored Website.

I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt in case you haven't read the Forum Agreement. We share our experiences here and our opinions...but this is not a Website where one person is 'right' and another is 'wrong.' Attacking others is not what we're about. I am going to edit your post for obvious reasons...this one time...and hope you will consider joining in the spirit of WWU.
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

evergreen

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2013, 03:23:58 PM »
Luise, I didn't mean to offend, but this post was very hurtful to me. I grew up seeing my mother bullied by my dad's mom horribly to the point where my parents almost divorced. My own MIL tried to bully me and I stood up to her. I feel bad for this DIL.

Offline luise.volta

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #11 on: November 29, 2013, 03:35:11 PM »
Thank you for responding, E. That is putting it very differently. We all have our buttons and when they get pushed, it is all about us. On WWU, the rule of thumb is to cool down before we post. We can share our hurt without making is personal. About three years ago, when I first opened this Website...I wrote three pages on Word...responding to someone and then ended up publishing a one-liner!  ;) Please back off and take a deep breath. Watch this thread and see what others may contribute. You have made your point.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2013, 03:40:22 PM by luise.volta »
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

evergreen

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #12 on: November 29, 2013, 03:40:35 PM »
What just happened to my earlier post? This one-it is not offensive in any way.



I also want to say this-your DIL has a life that doesn't include you. Women today are different and the rules are different. Some people are introverts and like their privacy. I do not feel your DIL was disrespecting you by going off on her own. I also feel that you cannot insist that anyone do anything. Your DIL has the right to live her own life as she sees fit and if that includes not being around you, so be it. 

Your son is the one you are there to see and your grandkids. Focus on them. Your DIL owes you nothing. She said her vows to your son.

I am curious as to why your son and DIL moved and what culture is your DIL-is it different from yours?

Offline Lauren

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2013, 06:11:16 PM »
She is not from a different culture, she just somehow got the idea of moving there into my son's head. I wasn't trying to be mean to anyone when I insisted that the whole family was together while I was visiting, I was just trying for all of us to spend as much time together since we don't see each other that often, but clearly it backfired.

evergreen

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Re: I'm afraid I'm losing my son
« Reply #14 on: November 29, 2013, 06:57:15 PM »
Why are you putting this all on your DIL? Why is everything her fault? Your son is an intelligent man. He is capable of his own decisions and more importantly, your son and DIL are their OWN family, seperate from you. I stand by what I said that you owe your DIL an apology.

Do you not see how hurtful and obvious it is to her that you don't like her? Don't you think that hurts and upsets your son and their kids?