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Why is it always me ?

(70 Posts)
Kartush Wed 21-Aug-19 22:51:29

I have come to the conclusion that must be lacking that certain something that makes people want to be close to me, throughout my life it seems it is always my job to keep in touch, to hold the family celebrations, to do the phone calls and to be honest I am getting tired. My son and his family never call, hardly ever message, if I call them I am lucky if they answer one time in twenty. Oh I know they love me but it seems they seem to have forgotten that my husband and I are here. We make the effort to go to visit them (they live 2000k away)we have lived in our new house for almost three years and they have never seen it. When we do visit they seem happy to see us, I guess we are just not a priority in their lives. Am i being unreasonable to feel this way?

CanadianGran Wed 21-Aug-19 23:05:58

I do sympathize. Of my 3 grown children I have one that really doesn't bother. But I have to say he doesn't bother with his siblings either, so it's him that is disconnected. The other two are much better at communicating. I don't feel the need to see them all the time, but a quick phone call or facetime is appreciated.

I admire some friends that always have their children and GC dropping by (but don't admire the amount of cooking that happens!)

If you do get the chance to speak your mind, please do. He may not realize that even a quick phone call will make all the difference.

GoodMama Wed 21-Aug-19 23:14:42

Kartush, do you feel this way with just your son but not with your husband, other relatives and friends/social circle?

Kartush Wed 21-Aug-19 23:30:50

GoodMama, my husband and I are very close, he and I have no problems at all, my daughters live in the same town as me and I work with them, but it is still me that suggests family bbqs and get togethers not them, I guess they may have just come to expect that Mam will do it. But yes I do have the same issues with other family members who live far away, I am the one who has to initiate contact or there is no contact at all.

Namsnanny Wed 21-Aug-19 23:52:55

Well for what its worth I don't think you are!

It's a shock to the system to find out we're not the centre of our world anymore, isn't it?

I think feeling isolated in personal relationships is really destructive. So no I don't think you're being unreasonable.

I just wonder why you're feeling this way now?
Has anything changed recently to make you look more closely at your life and brought this to the fore?

Apart from the details, I feel could have written a very similar post.
I've spent a lot of my time in the past, arranging Christmas get togethers, occasional family holidays, birthday surprises etc.
Eventually I realised that whilst people came and enjoyed themselves, they didn't reciprocate.

So quite a while ago I decided to pull back and let siblings arrange to visit me, children to phone or text first, husband to be proactive.

What happened? Nobody (with the exception of one of my children and my Father) made any effort. Even after I explained my reasoning.

I'm not trying to hijacking your thread or anything, but I just don't quite have an answer for you!

How does your husband feel about the situation?

Maybe I'm generalising too much, but in my experience the men in our lives often take a more pragmatic view.

There is always the possibility that if you have the chance to talk to your relatives about how you feel they may be more responsive than you expect. They may appreciate being given an opportunity to play a bigger part in your life.

I think you should try to talk to relatives and if it all goes pear shaped, you can at least know in your heart that you did your best for the relationships.

Getting out and about and making new friends is always good advice, and if you get the chance to do so, grab it.


annep1 Wed 21-Aug-19 23:58:52

I only see my sister when I contact her. If I didn't I don't think I would ever see her again. My children rarely visit. I don't know why. They ring, send photos, and cards etc. Just don't come.. I cried today thinking about it.
You're not alone Kartush. I try not to think about it. I have a loving husband.

Namsnanny Thu 22-Aug-19 00:02:38're not alone either, I'm glad you have a loving husband flowers

annep1 Thu 22-Aug-19 00:03:09

And as namsnanny says best to just make your own life and get on with it.

crazyH Thu 22-Aug-19 00:21:46

All I can say is Kartrush, you're not alone.
I have to organise family gettogethers. I have to remind my AC about Birthdays, Anniversaries etc. I have to organise everything. If I didn't, the siblings wouldn't see one another, cousins wouldn't know one another, and the family unit will disintegrate as I'm sure it will, once I've gone. Not fair, is it ?

GoodMama Thu 22-Aug-19 00:33:43

I’m glad to hear you have a close relationship with you DH and enjoy spending time together. It’s wonderful and as it should be!

My circle of friends often remark that i am the glue that holds our social circle together. I plan the gatherings and am usually the one to reach out (though not always). So i can relate a little. But I do enjoy our gatherings so much that it doesn’t bother me.

Have you thought about telling your son and daughters that you are not the family cruise director anymore and they should plan the next gathering?

It may be a bit before they do, but they might surprise you.

In the meantime, like other PP suggested, plan some fun activities for you and DH and don’t look back. Try and focus on what you do have than what you don’t.

Try and meet some new friends as well. Perhaps your adult children are in the throes of professional and child rearing that they do rely on you to plan.

Let them miss you a bit.

annep1 Thu 22-Aug-19 00:33:55

Thank you namsnanny !

Hithere Thu 22-Aug-19 04:55:02

Take a step back for a while.
Maybe they are used to you initiating the get togethers so they do not suggest anything

Instead, do things that you enjoy. Concentrate on yourself, not others

Re: son and family living 2000 km away
Any chance that they have kids?

Plumcushion Thu 22-Aug-19 05:16:41

I was always the organizer too and after decades I decided to quietly step back and see what happened, if someone took over or invited us or organized the gifts etc.
No one really did.
I know everyone always enjoyed our parties or visiting us but it just didn’t get reciprocated.
I’ve concluded that it just doesn’t cross most people’s minds or they are not interested in the effort it takes so I’ve decided to plan to quietly step back forward and resume my role of organizing events and holidays and gifts.
Otherwise we’d never see anyone!!!!
We are just predisposed to be entertainers or be entertained, I reckon.

Grammaretto Thu 22-Aug-19 06:21:26

My Mil, now in her mid 90s is still the glue in the family. I don't know what we will do when she's no longer around!
I don't possess her social skills and neither does anyone else.
I suppose if we want to keep it up we will be forced into it
I did have 10 to lunch last Sunday (including her) so maybe I am being dragged into taking on some of the burden.
She remembers birthdays, takes an interest in all her descendants and even her cousins.

Apart from the odd message on Facebook, I am lazy by comparison as are all the others.

One of my sons may fill the breech.

crystaltipps Thu 22-Aug-19 06:23:21

I guess if you’ve always been the kingpin others will take a back seat and expect that person to be the organiser. You’ve either got to continue in that role and make the most of it or tell them how you feel.

Sara65 Thu 22-Aug-19 07:26:09


You sound like you possibly work in a family business, as do I, so I see all three children and husband all the time, plus in the school holidays, various grandchildren in and out.

My daughters are always arranging things, outings, get togethers for all occasions, but if I didn’t see my son every day at work, I doubt I’d ever see him, I’ve long given up prompting him about Birthdays, he never buys either sister, nieces or nephews as much as a card. He’s single, has his own life, which is fine, but I think if we didn’t work together, he’d disappear from our lives.

harrigran Thu 22-Aug-19 08:23:09

All social gatherings, especially C********s are organised by DH and I, if we didn't nothing would happen.
When your offspring are in their fifties you would think they could arrange a family get together but it appears not.

Daisymae Thu 22-Aug-19 08:28:05

No, you are not alone. I always did everything and now DH is too unwell to help I have found it too much. We do have occasional meals out en famille and last Xmas found ourselves alone for a variety of reasons. I just can't be bothered too much anymore.

sodapop Thu 22-Aug-19 08:37:52

I agree with other posters, if another family member has always organised things then others will not bother. It does become wearing after a while, I think you should tell your family how you feel and see if you can't come up with a different arrangement, maybe taking turns in organising a get together. Sometimes I wonder who we are doing it for though as our younger family members seem quite happy just to keep in touch via social media.

TwiceAsNice Thu 22-Aug-19 08:47:03

We do tend to share the organising in our family, myself and two daughters live very close together. DD2 does all the Christmas organising and we all help with the rest. SIL just lets us get on with it . He leaves everything to the last minute

love0c Thu 22-Aug-19 08:49:29

I agree with all the posters. While ever you are prepared to do something other people will let you. My husband and I now things if we want to and it suits us. Occasionally not doing something or not being available may help you feel a little bit in control and not feeling powerless. I doubt things will change drastically but it is more about making yourself feeling better. That is what is important. As others suggest try to do things that you enjoy that do not involve organizing for others or relying on their company. But remember you are most certainly not alone in feeling/being treated like this.

dragonfly46 Thu 22-Aug-19 09:02:24

I think this is just something that happens in families. Both my children live 150 miles away and we do not see them regularly. We only see my DS and DGC every few months. My DS, however, rings twice a week on his way home from work. My DD never rings. We play games on FB etc but no other contact apart from the occasional text.

When I was diagnosed with an illness last year though it was my DD who came to see me and when I have my op in September she is taking a week off work.

Just because you they do not arrange things it does not mean they do not care. They know you have a good marriage and you have each other and can therefore get on with their lives. As you have always made the arrangements they still expect it and will not change now. You say they are always happy to come to family events so I would just carry on arranging them and do not dwell on why you alway have to do it. It is simply because you always have.

KatyK Thu 22-Aug-19 09:39:31

I don't think it's just you. Most parents of grown up children I know feel the same. There is usually only contact when the offspring need something. It's how it is I'm afraid. I think we always think we'll be close to our children but sadly it doesn't always work out like that.

Sara65 Thu 22-Aug-19 09:48:15


I agree, I see a lot of my daughters, but I’m always the one paying for everything, or having a house full of people, I’m under no illusions that they’re always around because they love my company. To be fair, we all get on pretty well, but I’m not stupid!!

Crazygran Thu 22-Aug-19 10:14:49

This is going to sound really cruel but here goes.
I read so many posts about grown up children who don’t bother very much with parents.
You brought them up !!!!!!!!