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AIBU

To think DD should read my emails?

(25 Posts)
Stansgran Mon 18-Nov-13 20:47:25

I never phone my DD as it's always the wrong time and she never reads my emails ,saying that she gets 200+a day. She has a very high powered job. She has two DC whose birthdays are two years apart but on consecutive days. For the first five years I always provided cakes etc as she was away but recently she has been there. We have them most of the summer sharing with the other GPs . This year because we are concerned that presents we give are often never given to them,used as presents for parties for when they have forgotten to provide them for the DGCs to take with them or generally not picked up from the PO, we decided to buy and give them here. They still don't know about them!and the birthdays are today and tomorrow. The little boy has a very expensive luxury gift from his parents to which we've been asked to contribute. The little girl has been given a present which is the equivalent of buying school uniform . Tonight we phoned to wish her a happy birthday and found that not only had she had no cards or presents but the cleaning lady brought her a cake knowing she wouldn't get one and there weren't even candles. In the end my DH put the phone down on her. She said she had never received my emails saying things had been posted. I suspect that she knows that one child is favored over the other and she doesn't want to acknowledge it. I don't know what I'm asking here ,just to put something on paper might help me subdue the sadness if feel for my little DGD.

whenim64 Mon 18-Nov-13 20:57:12

She doesn't get 200+ emails a day from you! Someone needs to get her priorities in order. High powered jobs aren't a good reason for behaving like that. A bit of down to earth, feet on the ground, time is needed here. Children grow up quickly and work things out for themselves. She's going to find it's lonely out there without the love and respect of your family. Will the little girl get her cards and presents now? I can imagine how you're feeling, Stansgran. Goodness knows how the birthday girl perceives it sad

Tegan Mon 18-Nov-13 20:57:58

Just a thought but could you have a sort of 'birthday' day when you look after them in the summer? I know one year we had the boys for two weeks in the daytime as mum and dad were decorating their new house and for some reason we had a box of Christmas things so we had a 'Christmas' day. I don't really know what to say about the little girl as it all sounds rather heartbreaking; I can understand why you're so upset.

penguinpaperback Mon 18-Nov-13 21:01:24

Oh Stansgran I feel your sadness. flowers On a much lesser scale my mother and father favoured my sister above me. But my grandparents loved me to bits and this helped me, still does. Your DGD must know you and your OH love her and that will bring her some comfort.

janeainsworth Mon 18-Nov-13 21:26:21

I'm so sorry to hear all this Stansgran, I don't know what to suggest but I know I would feel just as you do. sad
I agree with penguinpaperback your little DGD will feel the love you have for her flowers

Mishap Mon 18-Nov-13 22:14:04

What a strange and sorry situation for you to have to deal with. However, the good thing is that you spend big chunks of time with her in the holidays (presumably when mum is at work) so you have lots of chances to make her feel special and I am sure you are very good at it.

Mums who work full time in high-powered jobs have a huge struggle to get things right - it sounds as if things are a bit awry here. Any attempt to challenge DD on this is likely to cause a rift - the priority is perhaps for you to keep your "foot in the door" and redress any inequalities of treatment when your DGD is with you. They are times she will treasure I am sure.

gracesmum Mon 18-Nov-13 22:26:07

I like the sound of a "Birthday treat" when you have the DGC in the holidays, but like others, can feel your sadness and pain. I know working mums have to juggle but from our perspective we can see that they themnselves are missing out on so much by not putting their children first. I don't thinkyour DGC will be traumatised by this apparent neglect - children are remarkably resourceful and swallow your sadness but take positive action - be proactive in ringing the children when you know they are there, wishing them a Happy Birthday, tell them how much you are looking forward to seeing them and giving them their treat/present when they are with you and hope things improve. How are relations with SIL? Is he high powered as well? Good luck - I can hear how this is hurting you flowers

harrigran Mon 18-Nov-13 22:55:01

That is so sad Stansgran.
I used to feel sorry for DS having a birthday 7 days before Christmas so we created an official birthday during the summer holiday. He was given a gift that he could enjoy in the long break from school, perhaps this is something you could use when DGC are with you.

Anne58 Mon 18-Nov-13 23:09:42

Sorry, but what comes to mind is "a kick up the arse" to your DD.

So busy, so hard working? Pah!

How much effort/ does it take to respond to an email?

And as for this;

This year because we are concerned that presents we give are often never given to them,used as presents for parties for when they have forgotten to provide them for the DGCs to take with them or generally not picked up from the PO,

Well, words fail me!

Sorry not to be giving words of comfort, but I'm finding it hard to come up with words that, well, best leave it there!

Anne58 Mon 18-Nov-13 23:14:05

Stans we/you seem to have diverted quite considerably from the OP! Wonder if the thread will stay on course re the responses ?

Eloethan Mon 18-Nov-13 23:23:47

This is a very sad and sorry situation. I would feel very upset too.

I don't know quite how I would deal with it. I would be bursting to say something, but that might cause a rift and it's important that you maintain contact with the children, and especially the little girl. Presumably you can subtly redress the balance a bit when the children visit you.

From what I hear from other people with brothers and sisters, it isn't that unusual for one child to be favoured in a family - I have also seen it myself. But it is unforgiveable that parents should allow such feelings to influence the way they treat their children.

I hope that airing your very natural sad and angry feelings on GN will help you to cope with this situation.

Faye Tue 19-Nov-13 03:58:31

Coming from a family where parents and grandparents showed their obvious favouritism it is something I have no time for. It's not a nice feeling and you don't forget.

I think you have to do or say something. The least I would do is bite my tongue but land on my daughter's doorstep every year with a cake and birthday presents for my granddaughter on the day of her birthday. I myself would do all of the above and also ask my daughter what on earth is she thinking?

I would never contribute to expensive presents she is giving to your grandson but not your granddaughter. The cheek of your daughter, I feel quite angry with her.

sunseeker Tue 19-Nov-13 08:53:02

Like Faye I come from a family where one child was favoured over the other (my brother over me). I agree with her that you don't forget and it has coloured my relationship with my mother ever since. I wasn't fortunate enough to have grandparents like you so if I were you I would make a fuss of your DGD when she visits (but not so as to make your DGS feel left out). If it is possible to arrive at the house on their birthdays I would also do that.

Rather than confronting your daughter I would wait until she is feeling less stressed and then mention that you noticed DGS had a big expensive present but DGD didn't and were they saving to give her a particularly expensive present later.

In my case the theory was that one year my brother would have the expensive present and the next year I would, except it never worked out that way. I still remember one Christmas when I was 13 my brother was given a bike - I had a home perm kit!

janeainsworth Tue 19-Nov-13 09:00:28

Stansgran I could be cometely wrong of course, but I can't help wondering if the underlying problem is that your DD isn't coping with the high powered job?

glammanana Tue 19-Nov-13 09:25:44

jane those where my thoughts when I read the op's post I feel so sad for this little girl and the position stansgran finds herself in,and with out wanting to sound too "mumsie" being a parent is one of the most high powered job's going,I hope you get this sorted stansgran and your little dgd enjoys her day.

annodomini Tue 19-Nov-13 09:55:08

The term 'emotional abuse' springs to mind. This poor child is being conditioned to consider herself inferior to her more privileged brother. Luckily she has you there to redress the balance.

Stansgran Tue 19-Nov-13 12:40:46

Thank you for all these helpful replies. I think there is favoritism of the boy but he is charming bright sporty and very cute. She is very bright but difficult ,quite jealous of her brother and not as sporty,bit of a blue stocking. She is also out growing herself being head and shoulders above everyone in her class. Not cute ,dainty or pretty.In fact very like her mother was at the same age.
I think Jane it is not so much that DD can't cope with her job it's that she can't cope with family demands and prefers her job. And I agree that dealing with the demands of a family is possibly one of the most high powered jobs going .
We have had DGD to stay with us for quite large chunks of her life and until recently I always provided pretty clothes for her as the parents preferred sporty kit. My other DD has taken over the role of provider of frivolous teen fashion as I feel I'm a bit backward and conventional. My DD 2 has said she thinks DD 1 has given up on DGD. Which is all a digression from the original post that DD doesn't read my emails.
Whenyour comment about me not sending 200 emails struck home. I looked up the number I sent thinking perhaps I'd overdone it and was being a pain. I've sent 40 emails since January (when there was an emergency and I had to go in a hurry .) About half the emails are in relation to when I arrive ,leave, collect the children,code for the wifi,another quarter are pics I've sent of them when staying here so the parents can see they are well and a quarter are things that might interest them ie a course to go on when they are here or should I book a theatre. TBH I think possibly one email a month might still not be read. The DGD now has her own email account so a friend is researching YouTube stuff which she might enjoy and which I am sending on to her. I'm using Gransnet as a getting it off my chest. My DH will not even speak about it he is so angry. Thank you all.

Tegan Tue 19-Nov-13 12:51:02

I would value someone that keeps me up to speed about whats happening with my children whilst at work; my daughter is only happy driving home on the days that she works knowing exactly where her son is after school. The only thing I will say is that your grandaughter is very similar to your daughter at that age. Could she be cutting herself off emotionally because of painful memories [you know how we all felt when we were of a certain age] and maybe she wants her to wear clothes that 'blend into the background' so as not to draw attention to her height. My son's birthday was 3 weeks after my daughters and I was always conscious that I didn't put quite the same effort into his parties as hers, feeling in a bit of a deja vu frame of mind [although I don't think anyone would have noticed]. I'm just throwing ideas around by the way. I still feel pretty angry on your behalf Stansgran. Isn't it good that we can offload our feelings on here; the best safety valve ever imo smile.

Mishap Tue 19-Nov-13 13:17:30

There are some women who find being a parent very hard and (difficult though they may find to admit it) prefer being at work. I used to say to my clients who were struggling - "Work out how much mothering role you can handle and farm out the rest, because if you go over your limit, you will do it badly." It seemed to help some women to have permission not to be the perfect mother all the time without feeling guilty.

It does sound a bit as though your DD is in a similar position - she enjoys her job and copes with mothering the "easy" child who is biddable, charming and attractive, but that the real mothering challenge of her DD eludes her. And I guess this is where you come in! - and you seem to be doing a good job of it.

The challenge for you is not to feel aggrieved or annoyed, but just to accept that this is how your DD is - we all have our limitations and hers are clear.

One of my DDs often compalins (lovingly though) about one of her children (whom she loves dearly but who is challenge) and OH and I often remark how similar this child is to his Mum!!!

janeainsworth Tue 19-Nov-13 13:59:38

Excellent advice, Mishap

Iam64 Tue 19-Nov-13 19:39:00

Yes, Mishap, excellent post.

Stansgran Tue 19-Nov-13 20:59:01

Again thank you Mishap and * Tegan*. I think possibly yes she enjoys being mother to the easy one and she does have painful memories of her sub teens but I hoped that her success and good fortune had possibly erased them .what hurts is that we tried hard with her and she doesn't seem to be trying.i think the clothes thing is that DGD is at a school where there is no uniform but the children there are lovingly well turned out. My SIL was always dressed very cheaply by his wealthy parents and he will spend on rugby shirts when he goes to international matches for his son but not on basics for DGD. ( no PJs just old t shirts and knickers or old sun dresses to sleep in)I appreciate that disappearing into the background may be what they want for her ; we supply the kit for parties and so on. Thank you for the input you have given me some things to think about

Tegan Tue 19-Nov-13 22:58:36

A member of my ex in laws family never seemed to get on with her daughter even though the rest of the family find her adorable. Maybe sometimes it's a case of 'two women in a house'?

Faye Tue 19-Nov-13 23:43:36

It seems to me that your SIL is also showing favouritism.

I can tell you now the most probable outcome will be your GD will most probably never feel good enough, dislike her brother and forever try to prove to her parents that she is worth loving. I would feel very sour if I was expected to wear old clothes to bed while my brother was bought expensive clothes. Your daughter also finds time to buy expensive gifts for your GS.

I am glad your husband put the phone down on your daughter, I am very glad someone is letting her know that she is doing the wrong thing. While it's good not to interfere there are times you have to stand up for your grandchildren, otherwise who else will.

annodomini Wed 20-Nov-13 00:18:08

You are asked to contribute to your GS's expensive gift but your GD is disregarded. I hope you said no, unless you could make an equal contribution to an equally expensive gift for his sister.