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Paternal Nannie

(66 Posts)
thomsnannie2 Mon 16-Apr-18 11:58:08

Second placed. My son his wife and grandson live 35 mins drive away. Whilst maternal Gran lives 5 minutes walk away. A Little grand daughter is due any day. We have been asked to drive over if Labour should begin whilst nearby Granny is on holiday in Spain. To be on hand whilst my son is at work and to collect Thomas from nursery I suggested I book into a holiday lodge very near to them. However it seems that my daughter in law wants to be alone and can cope. I am so very hurt, that I am losing the chance to do the nursery run. Itsvso difficult to be Nannie that visits once and week and misses out on nursery visits and trips to soft play etcetera.If I suggest that we go somewhere it is always a case of come to the house instead...inwas so looking forward to being a little part of my grandsons life until his Grannie comes back. My D.IL is lively, but gets very anxious, more so as birth gets closer. I know a goodbye and parent waits to be asked...but other Grannie is prone to emotional out bursts and is possessive so I tend to pretend I am fine.As today I have assured them that I am glad they can cope..whilst crying inside.

silverlining48 Mon 16-Apr-18 12:23:06

We live the same distance as you do so don’t understand why you won’t be able to do the nursery pick ups, take him Home, have a chat and a cup of tea other whatever, see the baby and drive home.
I suspect your son and dil would like some time with the new baby and if you were nearby would feel obligated to you.
Don’t be hurt, I am sure there is no need.

silverlining48 Mon 16-Apr-18 12:25:30

If it’s any consolation I was sort of expecting to be ‘needed’ when my daughter had both babies, I wasn’t.

MawBroon Mon 16-Apr-18 12:38:58

35 minutes drive should not necessitate a hotel/holiday lodge. Perhaps they were afraid you were planning to spend all day with them
Don’t be hurt, carry on as normal , there is no reason I can see not t help out with the nursery run if they want you to. But remember your DS will presumably also be at home and it is important that the older child dies not feel “shut out” of the Mummy/Daddy/new baby equation.
Once a week visits are a lot more than many of us manage!

annodomini Mon 16-Apr-18 13:34:48

Many of us live a great deal further from our families than you do. You are a very lucky gran.

luluaugust Mon 16-Apr-18 13:45:20

Most of us have suffered this sort of gran situation at one time or another, first your helping, then your not, quite often the family feel good about not having to use you in the end when you have been looking forward to it. As the new baby is imminent I would wait and see, after all who is going to pick up your small GS and help a bit. I know new mums are out of hospital very quickly now but surely not doing the nursery run after a couple of days!

BBbevan Mon 16-Apr-18 13:48:51

There have been so many threads on this subject of paternal grandparents. The conclusions have mostly been based on ' your son is your son 'till he gets him a wife' , and of course your DiL will be closer to her own parents.
We grandparents no. 2 must take that on board. It does not mean that our DS, DiL and GCs love us any the less. It is just a different relationship, and frankly reading the posts from estranged GPS, youshould be thankful

gummybears Mon 16-Apr-18 13:52:56

The advice I was given by midwives etc when the arrival of number two was imminent (a year after number one arrived) was that immediately when number two arrived, it was crucial to keep number one at home with the newborn as much as possible to prevent the elder feeling 'replaced'. Kept together and the elder encouraged to help as much as they are able is I believe the standard advice. It's probable that this mum has had the same advice.

The advice has been reiterated to me now that number three is in the oven, but I notice third time around the midwives seem to assume rather more that I've figured motherhood out more grin

Mine don't go to nursery so they will be with "their baby" (yes, they have laid claim) 24/7 when they arrive in any case.

I was handed over to granny for a couple of weeks after my brother arrived and it was a singularly miserable experience. I didn't feel like it was 'special time', I felt like my mother in particular could not be bothered with me any more and it was a hard adjustment when I evetually began spending my waking hours back at home.

SpanielNanny Mon 16-Apr-18 14:50:10

Please, please don’t take this to heart. My dil had my first dgc last year, both me & her mother expected to be ‘needed’, but we never really were. It’s so hard isn’t it? I desperately wanted to help take care of him, but dil took to motherhood like a duck to water. I remember friends saying how their d’s/dil’s had been the same, declined help, then within a couple of weeks were asking their mum’s/mil’s to be more involved. My dil managed with no real ‘help’ from either of us. We are both made welcome and are included, but we are both very much grandparents that visit every week. I was sad at first,but have built up a wondrful realionship with my grandson.

Parents today are (very rightly in my opinion) urged to keep any other children at home with them when the new baby arrives.

SpanielNanny Mon 16-Apr-18 14:56:04

Sorry pressed post too soon!

Have you considered offering to help but stay at your own house? Are your son and dil concerned that if you stay at the local hotel you’ll expect to by at their home with them and their new baby all day?

You see your grandchild every week, you are so involved, and are going to be a much loved Nannie. Please don’t worry.

Does your dil know how much it means to you to go out somewhere? Does she think that by letting you come to the house, (where you can have the child’s full attention) you are going to enjoy it more than a soft play (where the child is likely to run off and do his own thing)

Try not to worry, and good luck for your families new arrival flowers

thomsnannie2 Mon 16-Apr-18 17:47:34

Thank you for all comments. The reason I booked a lodge was so that I would be available to pick up grandson without being under mummies feet at her home. I reasoned that it was better to be around the corner if Labour began than 35 minutes away. I am very lucky to be in position to visit weekly, guess a little envious of other n
Granny doing the day to day things with mummy. Thanks again,

SpanielNanny Mon 16-Apr-18 18:14:30

thomsnannie2 I know your heart was in the right place, I hope you didn’t think I was being critical of you. I was just trying to put myself in your daughters shoes, I hope I haven’t offended you.

Regards to being close when labour starts, I understand your desire to be nearby, but I think we tend to forget how long (in the vast, vast majority of cases) the early stage of labour labour is. I know I did, it was only when dil had my dgs that I remembered the hours of contractions every 20-30 minutes at the start of labour. Even from your home you’ll have plenty of time to get there, don’t worry.

Maybe let her know you’ll be available from your house if she needs you. It takes the pressure off her slightly if she wants to be alone. But she might really appreciate your company, especially if she’s a little anxious.

Cold Mon 16-Apr-18 19:17:04

I know that your heart is really in the right place but I think you have panicked and overwhelmed your DIL by talking about booking hotels.

Their expectation was having you on-call - only 35 minutes away - to pick up GS if needed. But talking hotels means (in their minds) that you are planning to camp at their house "waiting" as you would not be spending all day sitting in a hotel room would you? I think that many pregnant women just want a bit of space and peace in late pregnancy/early labour without having the stress of guests in their house that expect conversation and catering.

I think the best thing to do is to revert to the original plan and assure them that you are at home and available should they need help with your GC.

BlueBelle Mon 16-Apr-18 19:32:42

All seven of my grandkids were born and lived overseas
Two have returned to my town as their daddy died so I see lots of them for the last few years but in the first five years it was visits a few times a year and for two of them only every few years So yes you are very lucky and blessed to be half an hour away
Enjoy what you are offered it doesn’t last long all mine are teens now and I hardly see them (just as it should be)

MawBroon Mon 16-Apr-18 19:55:22

I was on call when DGS2 was due.
DD rang me about 6 on Saturday evening to warn me not to have a glass of wine as she thought things might be happening. They live 75 miles/90 minutes away (given a clear M1 and M6)
So off I went and arrived to find them watching Strictly, DD on her “birthing ball”.
Not a lot happened that night despite a warm bath and the next morning they went off to the Women’s Hispital for reassurance. They spent the morning there, then came home after lunch and we all went for a walk around the. Botanical Gardens with DGS1 (and DD and her TENS machine,) stopping every 10 minutes or so for contractions. Cup of tea in the cafe and then I took DGS home to theirs and they went back to the hospital. DGS2 was born late Sunday night, a good 40 hours after “things” had started happening.
So I think you’ll be quite safe 35 minutes away.
Good luck, hope it all goes smoothly smile

thomsnannie2 Wed 18-Apr-18 10:01:37

I guess it's the maternal/Paternal grand parent hot potato subject. I booked a lodge, as in cottage. With the aim of being around if needed.My concern was that the hospital for them is a further 50 mins drive on top of the 35 mins drive for us to be there to look after the little boy. I am very grateful I can visit weekly, but do feelenvious that in 4 years have only been out for 2 family outings.Whereas other granny,who lives near does the nursery run, and sees grandson several times a week, little outings to MacDonald etcetera. At birthday parties she simply takes child out of room ..even if he is talking to me! So I was hoping that for one week I could maybe pick him up from nursery and drop him off to mummy. DIL won't upset her Mum. Son won't upset DIL.

MawBroon Wed 18-Apr-18 10:05:07

I think you need to lose the competitive maternal vs paternal granny thing. You will only make yourself unhappy and risk hurt by overthinking every little word and deed. What you feel is perfectly natural, don’t get me wrong, it’s like sibling rivalry. But do you let it go or let it eat away at you?
Only you can decide.

SpanielNanny Wed 18-Apr-18 10:12:37

Have you tried being honest with your dil. You’re offering to pick up your dgs, but does dil know it’s because you really want to. Or does she think you’re offering as a favour to be nice? Have you expressly told her you’d love to go on a family outing with them, or just vaguely suggested it as an option? Find something fun like a local farm or something then ask dil to choose a day you can all go (although this might be difficult if she’s nearing the end of her pregnancy) Some times we have to be really, really clear about what we want.

Your dil obviously values you as a part of her family, don’t let this build into a silly resentment. Maybe she just feels cheeky asking you for a favour? It’s different with your own parents.

thomsnannie2 Wed 18-Apr-18 10:46:49

I have tried inviting them to outings we have planned. I have explained that I am here if she wants anything because I want to and because I want to help out.i don't think I am being competitive I sit in background if granny is about. Even when DIL apologises that grandson veers to granny as he sees her more. Anyway the sun is shining and I hope for a safe journey into the world of a little grand daughter.

alchemilla Thu 19-Apr-18 16:03:13

Congrats on your imminent new gd. However, you do see your GC T - albeit not every day. Thank the Lord for that mercy! At least it's not once a year or just skype.

nanaK54 Thu 19-Apr-18 16:40:12

All good wishes to you and your family for the safe arrival of your new grandchild flowers
I am a paternal nana but really don't feel any sense of competitiveness with maternal grandma - honestly life's too short sunshine

BlueBelle Thu 19-Apr-18 16:42:48

I think this maternal/paternal thing is awful there are so many threads about it now I have both boy and girls and have never felt that should make any difference if I m wanted for either I m there if not needed I get on with my own life I ve never seen it as a competition My first grandkids have another nan and grandad living round the corner I accept that they will have the strongest relationship with them One lot live near me and have no other grandparents so I m the main one for them The others have both sets of grandparents living away so it’s 50/50
I think we should all enjoy what we have but not base it on a Pollyanna view of wonderful family life it’s rarely like that in my opinion

annodomini Thu 19-Apr-18 17:14:53

Well said, BlueBelle.

cornishclio Thu 19-Apr-18 17:36:16

I am sure your DIL and DS will value your help but I agree that maybe booking a lodge was a bit over the top if you only live 35 minutes away. Maybe they are trying to spare you the expense or they don't want to be inundated with visitors at the moment even if family.

My DGD2 is due to be delivered tomorrow too. My DD is having elected c section and paternal grannies is having our DGD1 as she looks after her Fridays anyway. We will have her Saturday so DD and son in law can spend the day at the hospital with DGD2. DD has to stay in a few days due to preeclampsia so she been in hospital for 10 days already. Luckily neither paternal grannie nor I are competitive grannies. DD and son in law make sure we each get equal access and all of us live within 5 minutes drive of each other. Makes life easy.

cornishclio Thu 19-Apr-18 17:41:58

Re the nursery pick ups. My DD and son in law have said they want to do the pickups next week as usual when DGD2 home as they don't want DGD1 to have too many different things happening to help her adjust to baby. Maybe that is why your DIL would prefer her mum to do it if she normally does it anyway. I am sure you will get loads of opportunities to see grandkids. Offer to cook a meal or do some shopping. I have just spent today doing my DDs garden so it is nice for her to sit out if able to in next few weeks.