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to desperately want them to stay here?

(62 Posts)
AmberGold Fri 05-Aug-11 17:42:12

My son-in-law has gone to USA for a final interview for a job there. I am devastated by the thought of the family moving there. I have looked after my little grandson such a lot and he is huge part of our lives. We adore him staying with us - often for more than 3 days at a time when our daughter has needed help with childcare. She is pregnant and expecting her new baby in November. I feel struck by a triple whammy - our beautiful daughter moving so far away, losing our grandson and not knowing our second grandchild. We are a very close family and I was getting used to our son going to Afghanistan next year, now I feel as though my whole world is collapsing around me. How can I cope with these feelings which are so physical? I just keep crying at the thought they may be leaving so soon. My husband's brother moved to Canada in his twenties and never came back. I cannot expect my feelings to influence their decision to go but I don't think they'll really know how floored we are. How can express my thoughts on their move without making them feel guilty?

Grumpyoldwoman Fri 05-Aug-11 17:53:34 devastating for you. I cannot imagine one of our daughters moving so far away (one of them nearly went to NZ..but they changed their minds).
It must be agony not wanting to tell them how you feel (although I'm sure your daughter will know in her heart).......yet letting them get on with their lives.

No advice ..just want you to know I am thinking about you xxxx

glammanana Fri 05-Aug-11 18:23:13

Keep to the thought that he is going for a final interview and not everything
is set in stone at the moment,I am sure your DD is aware of the impact
that the move will have on you but if it goes ahead you will have to be strong
for yourself and for your DD,look forward to long stays with them,as travel
is so cheap now and try and be positive,I know how you feel as my DD went
to live abroad when DGs where 1+2yrs old,and to make matters worse for you
your DS and his Afgan tour is making you feel low,my DS went to Irag +Afgan
and then volunteered to do another tour as they where short of medic's,so
I understand your turmoil,am thinking of you and sending love + hugs

joshsnan Fri 05-Aug-11 18:27:14

Ambergold- your post brought tears to my eyes...I could not bear to think of how I would be if my eldest daughter chose to move abroad with my GS...I would be like you.. totally devastated... I really cant give you any advise sorry. I do hope other Grans have some experience of this and can offer you some support. thinking of you xx

nanapug Fri 05-Aug-11 18:33:47

How I feel for you. The words "we are emigrating" are words I dread hearing from my DDs. Like the others, I can not offer any advice, but can only truly empathise with you. Please take care x

janreb Fri 05-Aug-11 18:38:16

AmberGold - no advice as such, just wanted to say I can understand your feelings. All my family, brother, sister plus their families moved to Australia. I was the only one left here and, yes, it is devastating. In the days when they went it wasn't so easy to keep in touch either. I also have one daughter who lives abroard and another who lives in this country but a long way away - only one lives near us. I would say get yourself on to Skype and set aside times when you will call each other. Get a box and put in little things for the children - it doesn't have to be anything big - which you can either send or just show them when you call. Start a savings account and promise yourself a visit.
There is also Facebook etc.
I speak to my sister at least once a fortnight and we still have a close relationship although I've only seen her once in 48 years.
Don't expect the pain to just go away, but you will get used to it and learn to live with it. I am not one for bottling things up either but it depends on what sort of a person you are - my mother never showed her feelings although she was heartbroken, especially when my brother went. Tell them you wish them the very best but you will be upset when they go, I expect they will be just as upset. Is it going to be a permanent move?
Remember the world is a smaller place now.
We will all be thinking of you. xxxxxxx

janreb Fri 05-Aug-11 18:45:03

On the "grandparenting" section there is a thread about long distance grandparenting you might find some good ideas, and support, there.
Chin up.

JessM Fri 05-Aug-11 19:10:10

of course you are not being unreasonable!

Nanban Fri 05-Aug-11 19:30:37

Your success as a parent is that they are free to choose - your tragedy is the distance. Your success is that you are so loved, and that will never travel too far away. You will go visit, they will come visit. Not the same in any way but good for them.

crimson Fri 05-Aug-11 20:15:13

How awful, especially having to hide your feelings [Eleanor Rigby syndrome]. However, the only people I know of my age that have done really well are those that moved around and sometimes worked abroad and, in the current climate you have to think of the future. I've often said to my daughter they may have to consider something like that one day, and not to rule it out as we did. Having said that, if they did my world, too, would fall apart. At least, AmberGold [as with so many subjects raised on this forum] you can talk to people who understand how you feel and empathise totally with you.

Libradi Fri 05-Aug-11 20:28:25

No advice Ambergold but thinking of you, I know how I would feel in your situation, it doesn't bare thinking about.

AmberGold Fri 05-Aug-11 21:54:25

Thank you for all your comments and support. No nothing is decided yet so there is still hope! What I am finding so difficult is the realisation that the relationship I have with my grandson will never be the same if they go. He is too young to be able to hold skype conversations (2 years 9 months) and "Nana" will just become someone far away who he has a link with that he doesn't understand. The new baby will never know us properly as grandparents.
I know my daughter realises all this and will think carefully. I am just overwhelmed by the feelings this situation has created. My husband is adamant that we should be totally objective and supportive - which of course we should; but it's going to be hard not to be honest and open with her too.
I will go on the long distance thread too - thank you.

Stansgran Fri 05-Aug-11 22:14:30

It has happened to me with my elder daughter and is happening again with my younger daughter. To be honest it is like them going off to university only worse and it doesn't get better. skype-buy the best camera you can so you can scrutinise them when you connect up-my mind's eye picture of them otherwise stands still . The parents have to go where their talents are appreciated-it must be infinitely worse to see them off to a war zone. I don't think babies have a sense of time-the new one will be fine as soon as he sees you-and bombard the boy with postcards and email photos of you about your daily life so they keep the connection. we plant seeds and bulbs when they come and email photos of their progress-the children photo their drawings and email them and read to us on skype. It is a very lonely place but as your husband says be supportive and a stiff upper lip is a great help!

yogagran Fri 05-Aug-11 23:13:37

AmberGold - I totally understand your feelings having gone through two years of the same awful experience. My DS, partner and 3 year old GD have just gone to live in Canada (6 weeks ago) and it has been simply dreadful. I kept hoping that something would happen to stop them going but it's now happened. We bring our children up to be independent adults but when they make decisions like this we want so desperately to step in and stop them, but it's their choice. How it hurts - my thoughts are with you

Joan Fri 05-Aug-11 23:51:20

We left with our 4 month old baby to go to Australia. We felt his future was compromised in Thatcher's Britain. It was 1979. I felt bad for Mum and Dad but they had other grandchildren. Now of course I realise how bad it really was for them - I didn't back then.

BIG GIANT HUGE mistake for us two, but a wonderful life for our sons - one born here three years later.

My brother was offered a promotion if he went to Texas where his firm's head office was. He said No. They gave him and his wife a trip there to show how wonderful life in the USA was. They came home and said NEVER, and spent the rest of their lives, to this day, in Scotland.

I don't think today's USA is a good option. I would say so once and then force myself to shut up.

Joan Fri 05-Aug-11 23:58:54

PS Good luck - I truly hope they don't end up going to the USA. I know England has problems, but you have to think how they affect your family personally, and most of the time, if you're honest, they don't. That was our mistake - we thought of Thatcher and her politics, but didn't think about ourselves and where we belonged. Anyway, as hard workers we'd probably have prospered....

As it was, we had to bring up our children without extended family, and we never realised how much we all missed that, the lads included, until my husband's brother came for a holiday and the lads reveled in having a real uncle with real family memories.

Ambergold, I think you do have to point these things out, at least once. This would not be putting them on a guilt trip, it would just be giving an objective view of the whole picture.

sylvia2036 Sat 06-Aug-11 15:05:36

Neither my husband nor I would ever ask our son to consider our feelings if he wanted to take his family to work abroad if it meant a better future for him and them. The only problem is he would never do it, not because he would be thinking of us, but unfortunately he doesn't have that sort of get up and go. But if he did go, we would miss him and my grand-daughter but it would be their lives, not ours.

Having lived and worked in the USA I would say go for it - it's the only country in the world where success is not condemned, as in this country.

My mother, many years ago when I was 21 and going to work overseas, was left on her own here in the UK but she actively encouraged me to do it because she wanted me to broaden my horizons and see how the rest of the world was - and if I hadn't done it I wouldn't have met my wonderful husband.

As a parent you have to let your children go - they don't belong to you, ever. You give birth to them, you rear them, and then you let them go to do what's right for them, not for you - to do otherwise is selfish. Yes it's sad, but it's their lives and their futures.

Baggy Sat 06-Aug-11 15:53:13

I agree, sylvia. I've said something similar on another thread.

crimson Sat 06-Aug-11 15:56:43

I think she knows all that sylvia; she just wants carte blanche to feel what she's feeling. She's not being selfish, just honest about how she feels inside.

dorsetpennt Sat 06-Aug-11 16:07:53

In 1978 my ex-husband,myself and my 20 month old son moved to New York. I remember the dreadful feelings of guilt I had depriving my M-in-L of her beloved grandson. [both my parents were dead]. She had 2 older GD's she barely saw so my son was very precious. We had a chance to improve our life and this amazing opportunity arose, we would have been foolish to turn it down. She realised this and didn't once beg us to stay. She was very supportive. We wrote weekly to her [I have all her letters and mine during this time and it makes interesting reading], direct dialling to the US had started then so we also phoned each other once a month. I went home with my son, and later my daughter, once a year.
Nowadays we would have been able e-mail each other not to mention Skype - which I use now to talk to my GD in London. Ambergold they will come home to visit and you can go there and stay longer then the usual amount of time as you will have free board and lodgoings. I do sympathise as I would be devasted if either of my children decided to move abroad .

GrannyTunnocks Sun 07-Aug-11 08:58:03

It is ok to feel the way you do but they are at the start of their lives and you have to be supportive. My daughter has lived abroad since she was 19 and we have had many wonderful holidays visiting places we would never otherwise have been. We are in switzerland at the moment and you should have seen the welcome we received from our 7 year old grandson. We keep in touch all the time with our 2 grandchildren and are really close to them. Look on any move as a great opportunity for the whole family.

jangly Sun 07-Aug-11 10:50:15

Ambergold (lovely name btw) - That is so very sad, and awful for you. I think to be absolutely honest with you I would do and say anything at all I could think of to stop it happening.

Its not the right and proper thing to do, of course its not, but its what I am pretty sure I would do.

There is only so much a granny can take.

I so hope he doesn't get the job.

Jangran Sun 07-Aug-11 13:08:18

Only one consolation - they do not forget their grandparents.

Skype; overseas travel; easier 'phone connection - they all help.

My granddaughter has a "Grandma in Italy" - they rarely meet, since "Grandma in Italy" has too much going on in her own life. Yet my granddaughter speaks to her regularly via 'phone/Skype and talks about her as if she sees her daily. She is looking forward to a visit next year.

My nextdoor neighbours' daughter emigrated to Canada, choosing precisely the same time that my neighbours were planning to buy a house still closer to them than the 12 miles that previously separated them. My neighbours were brave but devastated.

But now... they visit for good long periods twice a year; they are now selling their house to go and join their family (daughter; son-in-law and three grandsons) in Canada. This year the family visited them and it was plain how much the children still loved my neighbours.

So hard, but things often work out in unexpected ways.

crimson Sun 07-Aug-11 13:40:39

I've just heard [not read the article myself so may have got it wrong] that Rolls Royce are planning to move some production to Germany. It seems that all manufacturing in this country is going abroad, so I feel that, in future, a lot of us will be saying goodbye to our children and grandchildren [because these compnaies then need staff from this country]. I don't know what the future is here for many young people any more.

AmberGold Sun 07-Aug-11 14:21:48

Thank you again for all your support. Yogagran, I feel for you and hope that the pain will lessen and you will be able to visit soon. My daughter at present seems to think she will come over to visit often and that if I go, I will stay for an extended visit - up to 2 months. This may be possible if we were retired but far from it. We both still work and I run my own business. I think I need to point these things out but do not want to come over as just negative on everything. Ah well, we will see what is decided. I'll keep you posted! Many thanks again.