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New here and my heart is broken.....

(41 Posts)
Txcowgal Fri 27-Jun-14 23:01:35

I know there are many posts here on this same topic but sometimes people just need a cyber hug. I have been having daughter-in-law problems since their wedding day. We have one son, an only child. He dated our DIL for 4 years before marriage. Although we are not alike, we seemed to get along okay but she never wanted to warm up to me. She was always courteous and respectful and smiling. Fast forward to wedding day and beyond. Her parents have bought my son out. They have oil money and have built them a fabulous 500K home in a gated community. New vehicles. Vacations. You name it. Our only granddaughter will be 3 soon and they have allowed us to babysit one time for 2 hours and we live closer than her parents. It truly breaks my heart. We were great parents to our son. Perhaps a bit spoiling but we are truly at a loss with this. We thought we were going to gain a daughter but instead, we lost our son (and being grandparents). Yes, we blame him for doing this to us too and we realize only God can intervene with their hearts and fix this, but I had to vent. Our DIL's mother pulls all the strings and I'm afraid we are just not good enough in her eyes. She wants total control and to be the sole grandparents. It's painful and heartbreaking. Please just pray for husband and I.

Galen Sat 28-Jun-14 00:02:46


happydaysahead Sat 28-Jun-14 06:46:30

Hello and a cyber hug to you. I am new to Gransnet too. It's going to take me a while to get used to it. For example are you Galen or Txcowgal ?
I can empathize with you greatly. I have felt heartbroken recently over what seems to be favouritism for both my son's and daughter's in laws. In fact I can't sleep and am up early to join Gransnet. The other sets of parents seem to have taken over from the day of the birth. In fact I couldn't believe that my daughter's in laws were hanging about the hospital as she gave birth. She did have a hard time though but does anyone else know what I mean when I say I felt I had been passed over. These in-laws treat my daughter as if she's a queen as she gave them as well as us their first grandchild I have three grandchildren and had loved bringing up my children and was looking forward to being a grandparent. I'm actually becoming so depressed over it all. I don't work and care for an older relative so feel very isolated. My own childhood and life have been difficult but I feel I cared well for my own little family which I was so desperate to have. One set of grandparents are a different religion and my son has had his children baptised in their religion. Both of my childrens' in-laws have large extended families whereas my husband and I have hardly anyone. I can see the attraction for my children to want what they didn't have - lots of cousins, aunts and uncles for their own children. One set of in- laws are never away from my son, and the my daughters in-laws live closeby to her. I actually feel betrayed. I was very close with both of my children while they grew up. Can anyone tell me if this is relatively common for a grandparent to feel the love they received from their child seems to dwindle and to a great extent switched to the new baby. Everyone said how great it would be to be a grandparent. Although my grandchildren are wonderful I never expected to feel so left out. Facebook and socializing mean my own children have less and less time to spend in contact with myself and my husband. They don't want us to join facebook. Part of me is frightened as I will see what a great time they are having without us. It would be like salt in a raw wound. Of course I want them to be happy and get on with their lives. Maybe I have to work at becoming thick skinned. I tried saying how I felt the other grandparents had muscled in but it ended in an almighty row with neither of my children sending me a mother's day card. My son said I was just jealous. I don't think I'm jealous it's just the rejection which hurts. The pain was acute when I saw the post van leave the street and I hadn't received a card. My daughter had always been very caring and thoughtful before. It's as if nature plays a trick and the deep unconditional love moves to the next generation as if to help nurture and survival.
I pray for you Galen. I just don't know what the answer is. I've thought about trying to get on with my own life but my caring commitment and lack of relatives make it difficult to find company. I don't want to learn a new course as I've done enough courses. Again my caring commitment stops me from joining groups and there is now no respite due to government cuts. I feel as if I am such a moaning Minnie but as you said I also need to vent.
I feel as if I am in shock and just existing. Empty nest syndrome is one thing but to be made to feel so useless is another.
I don't know where to turn. I can't volunteer due to my relatives condition and I am losing my confidence greatly. It gets to the stage that I look at baby/childrens' clothes and toys and think now what's the point in buying anything. Everything seems to be provided by the other families. Any advice from folk who have been through this would be appreciated. Does anyone else feel their child's personality changed after their own child has come along. I know it's only natural to change but to be so thoughtless seems so out of character for my children.
Once again - sorry for the moaning. I didn't mean to write an essay!
Diana x

ninathenana Sat 28-Jun-14 07:14:44

Reading posts like this makes me feel guilty for sometimes being greatful for the days we don't look after our DGC. DD works 4 days a week.
I'm sorry you are both in this sad situation.

thatbags Sat 28-Jun-14 07:23:31

Old saying comes home to roost: Your son is your son till he gets him a wife but your daughter's your daughter for the whole of your life.

I'm sorry you feel so sad about things, Tx. You say you've only babysat once but do you have visits with your grandchild and her parents together?

NfkDumpling Sat 28-Jun-14 07:55:10

It seems to me that generally one set of grandparents always has more input into grandchildren than the other. I have 3 children and in our case we're the less contact GPs for all of them. Only one DD lives close and her MiL is besotted with our DGD (her only grandchild) and looks after her on a regular basis. I don't begrudge her this remembering how things were with my grandparents. I lived next door to one set. Took them for granted, they were always there. But hardly ever saw the others (my DM didn't like them). To me though they were special, seeing them was a treat. I notice my DGD is the same. She gets sooo excited when she comes to us (4/5 times a year) but the other GPs, although she loves them, aren't as special.

Our children are grown ups now and lead busy lives and need their independence. They need their time with their children too. I know families who have Sunday lunch with alternate parents every week. They can't go to a village fete or the beach as it would cause upset. I'd hate my children to have that tie and feel that resentment.

My DMiL advised me to 'hold the reins lightly'. Enjoy the time you do get with your family, don't make them feel obliged, and they'll relax and come to see you willingly and happily (although maybe not so often!). It'll give you time to keep your independence too so you're a more interesting person to visit.

Gagagran Sat 28-Jun-14 08:06:34

I like the advice to "hold the reins lightly". I try to do that and it certainly works but there are times when it is difficult not to feel a bit neglected.

DS and DinL do live very busy lives and are in the middle of a major building project so I understand and value the times when he does call. I miss his lovely girls and wish we saw more of them although when we do see them they are always loving and excited to be with us.

happydaysahead Sat 28-Jun-14 09:03:38

What a good bit of advice Nfkdumpling. Im going to keep 'hold the reins ligjtly' as a coping motto. When Ive backed off at times Ive been accused of disinterest compared to the other in laws. Cant win. Glad there are other things to help with coping. wine cupcake sunshine wink Thanks.

Mishap Sat 28-Jun-14 09:35:04

Again there is this sad situation - and I do feel for you. The only advice I would give is not to confront your family with this - it just makes it become an issue - and "elephant in the room" whenever you do meet. Just be there for them - I know they do not make contact as often as you might wish, or involve you - but you cannot MAKE them do it. So sorry you have this problem.

henetha Sat 28-Jun-14 11:51:14

So sorry, txcowgal. I do sympathise. Those of us with sons and no daughters definitely do miss out. The in-laws are being particulatly selfish in your case, and I am not sure what you can do about it. I hope your son realises sooner or later just how unfair all this is for you.
Sorry for you too, happydaysahead. I sincerely hope you do find some happy days ahead.
In my case, I am reasonably lucky and do see my sons. But I have learnt that it is vital to keep my mouth shut and just accept that their wives families are always going to come first.

harrigran Sat 28-Jun-14 12:02:07

Some very good advice . You can't live your life through your children, find things to do that don't involve the children. The less needy you appear the happier they will be to interact with you.

glassortwo Sat 28-Jun-14 12:09:02

Those of us with DDs and DSs take this as the way of life,^Your son is your son till he gets him a wife but your daughter's your daughter for the whole of your life.^ Never a truer saying and it should be that way.

But try to convey that we are here if they need us.
flowers for you both.

ninathenana Sat 28-Jun-14 12:13:40

I do feel the other GP's could help the situation. When SiL parents visit (2-3 times a year) for a few days, I make a point of not contacting DD's family for the time they are there. I feel it's only fair to let them have their time with DGC.

I'm not trying to say how wonderful I am. Just that it's sad the other GP's can't see your side.

Mishap Sat 28-Jun-14 12:19:58

I am lucky to have DDs who share their children with us all the time. But, I also see what happens with their MILs, who are also fully included, so maybe it is not just a sons things; my DDs' husbands involve their mums and dads too.

Sadly some people are unlucky in their sons' choices of partners and I do feel for you.

harrigran Sat 28-Jun-14 12:49:38

^ your son is a son till he gets him a wife^, I actually became even closer to DS when he got married and had DC. DD has no DC, lives abroad and consequently has less contact.

KatyK Sat 28-Jun-14 14:05:25

All who are going through this have my sympathies. I too feel left out. I would avoid Facebook like the plague if you are worried about finding out that they are doing things without you. I used to be on Facebook and each time I went on it I became more and more upset as my DD, her friends and their mothers all have a nice social little circle going on which I am not included in. I deleted my Facebook account for my own sanity. Can't say I agree with 'your daughter's your daughter for the whole of your life'. I haven't found this to be the case at all.

sparkygran Sat 28-Jun-14 14:39:55

Big hugs all round I am counting my blessings as I write I am fortunate that my SiL and DiL enjoy my company and are happy to be in our family I can only imagine how hard it is when this isn`t so flowers

Atqui Sat 28-Jun-14 20:41:02

I feel very sorry for grandparents who feel that their sons'
in laws (the maternal grandparents) are bound to be closer to the couple and the grandchildren, but have to say that my son in law and daughter are very fair about the contact each set of parents has, so it is not necessarily the norm. In fact I am very aware that my daughter's MiL will not get the same flack that I get from my overtired daughter when they see them as I do, because although we are very close, my DD has a very sharp tongue around those she knows best!

numberplease Sat 28-Jun-14 21:30:16

Our youngest son and his wife see much more of her mother than of us, she`s a few years older than us, about 80, and seems to have more money to spare than we have, she`s always buying them things, or paying bills they can`t afford to pay, so she obviously gets better thought of, even though DIL calls her mother summat rotten to us. We have 5 children, he`s the youngest, we don`t have a lot of money, so can`t pay out like she does. It`s funny though, we come in handy on the odd night when they want to be out late and want our grandson to sleep here, but we always say yes, because he` a little sweetheart, and we don`t see enough of him since he started school, I looked after him daily till then, from being a baby.

Scooter58 Mon 30-Jun-14 06:26:04

KatyK,my sympathies,I also have not found that saying to be true in my eldest daughters case .

KatyK Mon 30-Jun-14 08:38:15

It's sad Scooter. We haven't fallen out, I am just not included in a lot of stuff that her friends' mothers are. I'm not sure why. I'm sure it is just
thoughtlessness nothing more.

janthea Mon 30-Jun-14 14:14:26

I'm lucky with my daughters. One lives abroad so I get to see her and the grandsons about 4 or 5 times a year and we speak every week. The other daughter lives about 10 minutes away from me. I see her at least once a week at the moment, but I'm retiring in a couple of months so I expect it will be more. She already has plans for me!!

My son-in-laws are both lovely. The daughter who lives close to me took me on holiday with them last year. This year they are taking her husband's parents. Fair shares all round.

pinkprincess Tue 01-Jul-14 00:11:58

I have a feeling I have posted on this subject before.

You may all feel rather envious of me as I am the opposite to this subject.
I have no daughters, my DS1 is single with no children, my DS2 has a total of five children from his two marriages.
Neither of my son's two sets of in-laws have done much if any childcare.The reason was they were not willing but have had every opportunity to do so.
I have been involved in the care of my grandchildren since their very early days and while I gave the other grandparents all the time they wanted with the DGC it was never taken up in a big way.It was their choice not to get involved.
My son's second marriage has recently broken up and his MIL caused no end of trouble suddenly wanting our two mutual grandchildren removed from his care with no valid reason.They are living with their mother and still visit him and us often, nearly every weekend in fact. Fortunataly DIL has seen sense regarding her mother and is aware of her behaviour and unwillingness in the past to provide childcare when needed.
I feel sympathy for all of you despite me as a paternal grandmother being in the reverse situation here.
When my DS first marriage broke up his former wife denied him and us access to their three children. This lasted for two years until he took her to court and won his case. My heart was broken in that time.We saw the children frequently after this, and their mother and I are back on friendly terms.The youngest child of his first marriage now lives with us and DS. She and her mother were having problems getting on and ex-DIL could not cope with her. There was never any question of her going to other grandma who is now widowed and disabled.

rubylady Tue 01-Jul-14 02:47:16

Dear Txcowgal - I really feel for you. It is awful to be excluded from your GC's lives. I too do not agree with the saying. My daughter makes my life miserable, keeping from visiting with her two baby sons (3 and 1). If I want to see them I have to go 2 hours to visit, stay 2 hours and return. My health is deteriorating due to heart problems. She has wanted me to get my hand in my pocket to buy nursery items etc. but will not come to see me. So not a daughter for life then.

As for creating a life for ourselves, how are we supposed to do that when illness or finances stop us from doing this? And how are we supposed to turn our thoughts about them off? To harden up is difficult when you are a big softie. My little dog has brought me great comfort. Would it be possible for you to get a pet? Can you walk short distances to take a little dog out maybe? Or a budgie, something to nurture and fuss over? Can you do any knitting or crocheting? I know that dog's homes need coats for poorly animals and this would be a way to care for others in your own time and home. Can you find some bits and pieces you no longer need and put them on ebay? It's so exciting seeing if someone bids on them. Do you like doing crafts? Maybe make something small and then sell it on one of the sites- Notonthehighstreet, Ebay or Etsy. Do you like music? I find that if I feel upset or stressed, I put on a cd and by the end of it I'm singing along.

If you need any other help with anything please don't hesitate to message me. And keep your chin up. It's their loss, give your time and warmth to others who need it, plenty do.

Big hugs and thoughts are with you.


Yogagirl Tue 01-Jul-14 09:39:05

Cyber huggs Tscowgalflowers at least you are seeing them, I have'nt seen my beloved GC for near on 2yrs now & my D is not my D all of my life. My nasty s.i.l & his cruel mother cut me & my other D off through jealousy as I had a very stronge & special bond with my GD which they didn't like. (Story on 'cut out of their lives' thread.) So as hard as it is for you Tscowgal just take the crumbs that are given to you & make the best of that time, I know thats not how it should be, I would give everything to see my D & GC again.
Rubylady I, like you, get emence comfort from my little dog, in fact I'm not sure I would still be here if it was not for the love I get from her, & my other D of course, but I live alone with just my little dog. Nice you are trying to help with all your advise flowers
Ninathanana your very kind & thoughtful flowers