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Relationship with Adult Daughter Strained

(42 Posts)
Southline Tue 05-Aug-14 14:38:54

My adult daughter until just recently lived in our home with our 9 year old grandson. In his 9 years they have attempted to live on their own I think it were 4 times. She is a very hard person to live with. Basically, because she's hard to live with thus she always came back home. She's had my grandson's dad and a boyfriend live with her and to hear them tell it - she pretty much treated things the same as I have dealt with her when she lived at home. Long story... but as she and my grandson have recently moved out I'm still bothered with our strained relationship. She's a great mom but she tends to be selfish in ways I cannot keep my mouth shut. It's very difficult for me to keep quiet after several acts of selfishness. I try hard to not say a word in my opinion but eventually I can't hold it in any longer. I do try very hard to keep my nose out of her business but sometimes... sometimes it is next to impossible!!! My husband will tell me "why did you say that?" to "she's a good mom and she's just selfish." He's not one to be confrontational and it's easier to just ignore till he too will eventually give his opinion.

So this leaves me with my latest occurrence and I thought maybe if I asked others for advise???

One recent morning she were dropping my grandson off on her way to work. I happen to go out front to meet him and saw he were "already" getting in trouble for something. Finally he came down the drive way and I asked him were he alright? He were very very tired and just wanted to go back to bed. It were early between 6:30-7:00 am for her to be at work. Because he looked so sad I went to the bedroom to make sure he were ok. He had locked the door and I asked could I come in? He open the door but told me he just wanted to go to sleep. When he finally woke we were running errands and I asked him did he want to talk to me about what happened this morning? He said his Mom got mad at him cause she said he were whining. He said he asked her to turn down the car radio so he could sleep. (I too have been in the car with her and she blared her radio and when I asked her to turn it down - my request too caused a problem) So anyway, my question is since we rarely agree on many of her selfish acts of discipline and that would be her biggest reason for moving out... I want to confront her with how she should have turn down the radio when she were asked. My grandson is 9 years old. He's a really great kid! I know that when I suggest something in my opinion in reference to my grandson it always ends with a problem with she and I. She will say "this is exactly why we moved out" to "I'm not going to talk to you about this!"

I just need advise and opinions please... She's very selfish with her wants and needs. She always has been... This incident is one of the many but would be the latest incident. I would just like to have some opinions please?

Thank you...

Aka Tue 05-Aug-14 14:52:53

I wouldn't confront her about this. It won't do any good and will, in all probability, make things worse. Just be there for your grandson. But neither should you criticise your daughter to your GS, even if it's not in words.

OK, she's difficult. You'll just have to accept that and she's unlikely to change in the short term. If you want to maintain any sort of relationship with her, no matter how flawed, you're going to have to 'see all and say nothing'. There are people on this forum who have been denied all contact with GC for similar reasons, and some for no reason at all.

Think about your GS and put your relationship with him first.

Southline Tue 05-Aug-14 15:00:52

Thank you for a quick response... My mind has been dwelling on this for days. I'll not say a word!!! Again, Thank You !!!

Nonu Tue 05-Aug-14 15:05:06

Wise words AKA & SOUTH
[last two posts]

Tegan Tue 05-Aug-14 15:07:49

Southline; when something like that happens, keep quiet but come on here and have a grumble. Trust me, it really helps!

Southline Tue 05-Aug-14 15:37:58

Wish I had looked for a helpful forum years ago!!! Thank You, Thank You, and Thank You !!!

Have a Great Day !!!

rosequartz Tue 05-Aug-14 15:47:46

Yes, chunter away on here (but don't make it too personal as advised on another thread in case you are recognised). However, try not to say anything to her or to your GC about her either. A zip is always a good idea, however much you are wanting to say your piece!

I sounds as if she is stressed (getting an unwilling child up and out early in the morning is stressful in itself), going to work, coping on her own, although with your help luckily.

Perhaps he had a late night, I suppose it is the school holidays but sounds as if he needs to go to bed earlier possibly. Only try not to say that to your DD!

Eloethan Tue 05-Aug-14 16:32:18

Without knowing in what other ways your daughter is "selfish", and given that you say she's a "great mom", it's difficult to advise. Having the radio on too loud in the car is annoying (my daughter tends to do the same and doesn't take kindly to requests to turn it down). But without knowing exactly what happened between your daughter and your grandson it's probably best to try and overlook these relatively small incidents.

If your grandson thinks that you automatically "side" with him, he may start to exaggerate small incidents (all mums are unreasonable and selfish sometimes, like anyone else). As others have said, maybe your daughter is under pressure, stressed and sometimes impatient. My feeling is that you are right to give your grandson the time and attention to have a moan but try not to show by word or facial expression disapproval of her behaviour, either to him or to her.

littleflo Tue 05-Aug-14 16:51:14

The reason why you should say nothing, is because "You cannot reason with unreasonable people." You sound like a lovely grandma and I think you should just continue to be a support for your grandson. Without talking negatively about your daughter, you perhaps need to give your grandson some coping tools. I would find a good pyschology book which would help you both find the right words for handling her.

Tegan Tue 05-Aug-14 16:56:06

Even the youngest, loveliest children are very good a manipulating adults as well,which is why it's important to not critiscise their mums or dads.

KatyK Tue 05-Aug-14 17:15:38

I agree with Aka and others above. I spoke up re my daughter and it was a big mistake. Things have never been the same. I think we have to suffer in silence and paint on a smile. Not easy but best.

Tegan Tue 05-Aug-14 17:18:36

Those grannies that knit Shreddies knit zips as well....wink...alas, we've all needed one at one time or another sad...

Mishap Tue 05-Aug-14 18:19:33

Best to say nothing to either. Just go with the flow. No-one is an ideal parent; and if you want to have contact with your GS you need to bite your tongue - very hard sometimes I know

sparkygran Tue 05-Aug-14 18:37:58

Don`t do anything you will live to regret. Support your GS however and whenever you can and don`t get over-involved.

angiebaby Tue 05-Aug-14 21:32:22

hi southline,,,,this is like looking in the mirror to me,,,similiar to what you have been through,,,,take all the addvice you can on here,,,,,,,my advice,,,keep quiet,,,say very little,,,,dont make comments,,,offer help if its asked for,,,otherwise keep out let them get on with it no matter how your feeling,,,just be there for them,,,,,thats all you can do,,,,that way you cant be in trouble . ,,,i know it breaks your heart sometimes,,,,,but its the only way,,,,,you dont want to get shut off completely,,,,,,,because thats a killer ,,,i know i have been there.....chin up,....

rubylady Wed 06-Aug-14 00:39:21

Southline If your grandson wanted to stay in bed would it not have been easier for you to go to their home and mind him there? Then he would not have had to get out of bed at all until he was rested. Then when he woke, you could have taken him back to yours for her to collect him later and you could have done your errands then as well. smile

Coolgran65 Wed 06-Aug-14 03:20:56

It's been said repeatedly on this thread..... Keep your eyes open and your mouth shut..... Provide an welcome and a hug, but not advice unless asked for it.
Your grandson is now 9, it won't be long until he will have his own opinions and perhaps his mum will have to rethink her attitude.

jinglbellsfrocks Wed 06-Aug-14 09:05:43

I would have a hard job saying nothing to her. It sounds as though the child has a pretty miserable existence, verging on neglect and abuse.

Would she agree to let the little boy live at yours during the holidays, and could this become permanent? Otherwise I would say, try to persuade her to move back in with you.

I don't think this should continue. It is too much for a nine year old to have to put up with.

glammanana Wed 06-Aug-14 09:14:36

I'm with Coolgran on this it won't be very long before your DGS starts finding his own feet so best to keep out of mum & son disagreements they will pass as quickly as they started and you could be left with the backlash if you happen to mention anything.Just be there for your DGS he will let you know if he has any major problems in his own time.

henetha Wed 06-Aug-14 10:07:08

I learned years ago that we have to keep our lips zipped. It's the only way if we want to maintain close contact with our adult children.
It's not easy though. Just continue to be an affectionate support to your grandson, but with as few comments as possible. Good luck.

HildaW Wed 06-Aug-14 10:29:03

Agree with henetha, hopefully we do our bit in the first few years with our children and then help them become half way decent people.....then we do have to let them get on with their lives. Our children will not go about things the way we did or agree with our views on life......but we still love them and offer support/advise when asked. Its not up to us to try to change them at this late stage....we had our chance when they were young and if they have gone their own way in life they are not going to change.

If your grandson can view you as a safe harbour, where he can just relax and perhaps get things off his chest without the fear of knowing it will get back to his Mum he will bless you for that in the years to come. Believe me I know, my father was a deeply unpleasant man and my Grandmother, although she could do little to chance things, gave me somewhere to go after school for a cup of tea and a chance to just moan my way out of the misery I felt. Knowing there was always a non-judgemental haven for me to relax in for an hour or so kept me going and gave me the courage to see him for what he was and make my own decisions rather than be bullied by him.
Its an old adage....but least said soonest mended, really applies in these cases.

Gagagran Wed 06-Aug-14 10:38:17

A very wise post Hilda and I agree entirely. Sometimes it is hard though - especially as you only want to try and help and feel rejected that the help is not wanted!

jinglbellsfrocks Wed 06-Aug-14 10:49:05

For God's sake, think of the child! You are all putting the grandchild/grandparent relationship first! In other words, yourselves. Totally selfish.

Why should he have to put up with such a miserable childhood?

If possible, get him away from his selfish, verging on abusive, parent.

Stansgran Wed 06-Aug-14 11:16:25

Grandparents have no rights only wrongs. How do you propose the poster does that when she says the mother is a great mom? The problem is the poster and her daughter. It is so hard to keep your mouth shut when you want the best for the GC

Eloethan Wed 06-Aug-14 11:18:25

I think you're rather over-reacting jingle. The poster said that her daughter was a "great mom". We don't know the full background or in what way her daughter is selfish. The incident mentioned - about the radio in the car being too loud - does, I feel, demonstrate some degree of thoughtlessness but I can't see how you jump from that to "abuse" or "neglect".

I think what other posters, including myself, are saying is that it's important not to create a rift between mother and son but to try and be supportive to both of them - in particular providing a "listening ear" to her grandson.

Of course, if there was a suggestion that the child was being emotionally or physically abused, that would be a different matter.