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Aibu to want my son back? His fiancé has taken him from me

(148 Posts)
FrillyGrill Wed 20-Dec-17 01:37:06

I have 3 sons (eldest 27, middle child 24, youngest 17) When my eldest son was 18 I moved from Britain to Australia, without him but with his other siblings. My son didn't want to go and my visa would have expired if I waited any longer.
So I made the choice to leave Britain. Regretfully our contact waned. Years later when my eldest was 26 I offered him the chance to come to Australia. By this time he had been in a relationship with someone, I'm not sure how long but I know they lived together for 12 months by this point.
He refused to leave her behind, so I put my support behind her too and 8 months later they arrived in Australia.
The plan was for them to stay with me while they found work then move out and live locally.
I found his girlfriend difficult to live with, she was clean and pleasant enough but she smoked a lot. She never did so in the house but I could always smell it on her. She was very forgetful and would forget to put things away after using them, I also found her very dependant on my son. Asking him things like "where's this got to? Have you seen x?" I wonder why she didn't look for herself. She seemed pretty useless. My son didn't seem happy. I started snapping a bit and there was an altercation with my Dh too.

He found a job, she didn't. But they could manage on one income and so they decided to move out. I'm very hurt that they did so without telling me. I went to work one day, as did Dh. My other son (16 at the time) was in the house at the time. They had a large cab turn up at 10am and were gone within 20 minutes. They initially had told me they were going to move out 3-4 days after the day they actually did. I also found out second hand that they are now engaged they didn't think it worthy to tell me. I haven't seen his fiancé since.

I saw him that night when he returned his house key but didn't see him again for another 2.5 months, he came over to get some post and we had a coffee. I invited him to barbecues and gatherings but there was always something else to be doing or he was working.
On his younger brothers 17th birthday he came around and stayed for about an hour, brought a card and a present, had a single drink then went home.
I have not seen him since. This was 5 months ago. He has stopped responding to my texts.
Our text contact all but died when I said well if your fiancé was so smart and great with words, she'd be employed by now surely? (This was in response to ds saying his fiancé would happily help youngest ds with his resume, as she was good at that and always knew what to say for the best)
Ds snapped at me and told me she does have a job (nobody had told me that so it was fair to assume she was still unemployed I think) and that my judgements about her were unwelcome. I stupidly also said that I see him less now than I did when he was in the uk.
He pointed out this was "horseshit" since I never bothered to visit. I wanted to visit its just such a long journey and I hate flying so much.

He stopped talking to me then. He hasn't spoken to me for almost 2 months now.

I later found out from middle son that eldest son and his fiancé were having a dispute with the letting agents with regards to some issues (floor damage, I believe) and might have to move. He also shared that eldest sons fiancé is pregnant.

I text eldest son asking where he was moving to. No response. I asked when she was due to give birth. No response.

I text again telling eldest son I was worried about him and invited him to live with me again until he sorted himself out, no response.
At this point he also stopped responding to middle sons contact.
Middle son went to eldest sons home. Eldest son was gone. Middle son contacted the letting agent they had moved out four days prior. Letting agents declined to share further info or forwarding address. Middle son then went to eldest sons work place and asked to speak to him. He was informed by the manager that he had left his job 7 days prior to that and they have no knowledge of where he has gone.

Middle son did speak to a friend/ex coworker of eldest son and friend did say he knows where he's gone but declined to share the information, stating only that he was still in Australia and is doing ok.

I know this is all because of his fiancé.
I just want my son back.
I've brought him (and his fiancé) across the world to have my son back and it seems that I've just lost him instead. I wish I hadn't bothered.
Aibu to just wish his fiancé would let me have my son back?
She has isolated him from everyone and I worry he is being abused by her.
He says he's happy but I don't think he is.
I don't know where he is - Australia is huge and I could drive for 20hrs in a straight line without stopping and still have another 40hrs of driving to do, without reaching the other end of Australia. He could be anywhere.

Jalima1108 Sun 24-Dec-17 15:51:32

Perhaps she's upset because we didn't see it from her point of view? But if we did and were not honest, then that would be of no help in the long term.

FrillyGill, I hope the posts on here have helped you to see the situation from another perspective.

NannyTee Sun 24-Dec-17 15:54:34

I'd have thought she would come back and insist that it's a genuine post . I know I would.

FrillyGrill Sun 24-Dec-17 17:20:55

I've had a lot to consider (it's 3am here and I just wanted to update quickly after present wrapping) it's an absolutely genuine post but of course you're welcome to report doubts if you think I'm lying. I have no interest in arguing with strangers about that.
I posted here for perspective which I got. It's been hard to read but again I didn't post to argue I posted to get feedback on the situation.
I sent my son (eldest) a text apologising and saying merry Christmas and if he's happy to chat to me I'd love to talk to him. It's just a waiting game now. I hope he responds.
Middle ds already lives outside of the home so I'm not going to lose him when he moves out he did four years ago. But I understand my behaviour is wrong. I also understand I could've handled the whole situation (from leaving the UK onwards) a lot better.
I hope he will allow me to make amends but we shall see.
I have been partially avoiding this thread as it makes for upsetting reading - though I have read each comment and I thank you all for your contribution but I've also been quite busy.
Thank you again and goodnight everybody. tchsmile

nightowl Sun 24-Dec-17 17:56:38

FrillyGrill thank you for updating us. I’m sorry if some of the comments were hard to read, but I’m glad you have made contact with your son and apologised. Being a mother is hard, we all make mistakes, and we often blame ourselves when things go wrong. You have done what you can and I really hope your son will contact you and you will be able to build some bridges.

I wish you a happy Christmas and a wonderful 2018 with your family x

Fennel Sun 24-Dec-17 18:13:00

FrillyGrill - glad you've showed up again smile
And sorry I doubted your veracity. Well done for the steps you've taken.
If you can get 'shalom' (peace) in your family that's the ideal for a mother, imo. I've still got a few amends to make.

mrsmopp Sun 24-Dec-17 18:13:14

Thanks for coming back to us, and we didn't want to hurt your feelings at all, but just point out that the situation needed to be put right. You clearly love your son and it's good that you have been in touch with him. I hope you can embrace his fiancé and rebuild your relationship with them. If you can do this it will be so rewarding for you all. Please let us know how it goes. Smile and be nice and don't let it show that you don't like her - you may well get to like her now! There is room for both of you in his life - it's not a competition. Have a lovely Christmas ?? and we all hope you have a happy new year in 2018. All our good wishes go with you!

NannyTee Sun 24-Dec-17 18:13:30

I second that . Sometimes one has to look back to see ones mistakes. Merry Christmas

Cherrytree59 Sun 24-Dec-17 18:19:07

Frillygrill Nice to see your update
I am pleased that you have contacted your son.
I also very glad that you have been able to put things in to perspective.
To admit that your behavior was wrong is very brave if you.

I wish you a Happy Christmas and hope that the new year will provide the chance of new beginnings and peace outcome for you, your son and his partner.tchsmile

mrsmopp Sun 24-Dec-17 18:19:42

Don't be upset any more. We are on your side! We had to be honest in order to resolve the situation. Sorry if it hurt.
Please keep in touch with us on gransnet. We look forward to hearing from you.

BBbevan Sun 24-Dec-17 20:49:38

Well done FrillyGrilly I really hope all goes well for you and your family. Happy Christmas

Bridgeit Sun 24-Dec-17 21:23:12

Well done FrillyGrilly, wishing you all the best ?

BlueBelle Sun 24-Dec-17 21:58:07

To admit you are wrong is a big move in the right direction and good for you for taking it on the chin I hope your son gives you a second chance and if so embrace his wife and enjoy your new grandchild
Good luck Frillygrill

MargaretX Mon 25-Dec-17 10:28:00

with future dils and sils you have to realise that as soon as your child is an adult another partner will appear and you will be second in his/her affections.
It takes a while to digest this and is better done before they are at the age to look for a life partner.

DH and I aften talked about it and felt we were ready to accept any SIL so long as he was not abusive. Our secret hope was that he woud not be a football addict and this came true, and we are thankful for it.
You have time to adjust before your next DIl appear. Build them up! Find something to like about them and tell them they look nice or SMILE at them.

With my MIL she watched me like a cat watches a mouse and alway with grim look on her face. My own mother was more loved by her DIL than the real mother who was similar to how you have been.
There is always time for a second start
Good Luck!

lilybet Wed 27-Dec-17 17:57:33

You have to take a huge deep breath. Tell them you are truly sorry for all that You have done. It is you, that is at fault. If you leave it much longer then it could be too late for all of you. Don't live in the sad world of if only.
Be the strong one and say sorry and be sorry. You let the boy down. Now try as hard as you can to make this right.

OurKid1 Wed 27-Dec-17 18:53:02

I do sometimes wonder if some posts (not necessarily this one) are started by someone doing research into online forums ... just saying.

Elegran Wed 27-Dec-17 20:53:33

Some could be by journalists seeking fodder data for a news article on the reprehensible attitudes of the elderly to the problems of the not-so-elderly.

MargaretX Wed 27-Dec-17 21:03:52

Reading posts for information:

I'm sure that this is true, and hope they rewrite it truthfully.

jeanie99 Thu 28-Dec-17 02:18:50

It is very difficult when our children grow into adults and we no longer have influence over them. We can sometimes see the problems they are making but have to keep quiet unless we are asked for advice.
We cannot force are children to listen to us as they did when young, it is hard because you will always be their mother and always want the best for them.
We try and bring them up to be responsible independent confident young people and that is all we can do.
Your son as untied the knots and as flown and unless he contacts you you can do nothing.
You have to know when to bite your tongue.

OurKid1 Thu 28-Dec-17 16:56:00

Elegran and MargaretX Quite.

alchemilla Tue 02-Jan-18 15:23:23

FrillyGrill well done you for taking it all on the chin. I hope your son and DIL will eventually take your apologies and good wishes in good spirit and restore contact but it may take time. You could ask if you could send a present for their child and ask what they would like, but I wouldn't push it. Nor push any of your other DC into being message bearers - though I would explain to them you think you've handled it badly and will wait for your son and DIL to be in touch when they want to. I hope 2018 is happier for you.

Sam1965 Sun 07-Jan-18 11:59:54

I think you are being unfair ....
You left him at 18 to be an adult and make adult choices ...
10 years on you can’t pick up where you left off or control them in any way ...
If you want any contact with them and grandchild I’d take a step back ...
You need to leave them to make their way and offer genuine support not criticise and be nasty ...
Poor girl needs “family” ....for once your needs are secondary... try it

Luckylegs9 Sun 07-Jan-18 18:26:58

I really think you need to step back, agree with Sam. He had to manage without you, at 18 they still need mums back up, he had to grow up fast. I would never, ever critise his partner, that is telling him he has bad judgement, it's his life to do as he wants as you did. I would write apologise for the mistakes you made, but love him and want to try again whenever he feels ready. Having said this, my own daughter wants nothing to do with me, despite me walking on egg shells, for years, we never had a falling out, she just didn't want me any more.