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Family Split

(15 Posts)
over60plus Sun 24-Jan-16 11:27:50

Would appreciate any advice you good people could offer , our Son 47 years of age had a major disagreement with his son age 24 (our grandson) who has a young daughter I know it is tearing our son in two because they are unable to settle this. My dilemma is do I try and be a go between we have a great relationship with our Grandson it is never talked about the problems with his dad. My son is divorced from the lads mother, any help I would be most grateful

M0nica Sun 24-Jan-16 12:08:16

Never, ever act as a go between, if you do that you will end up alienated from both son and grandson. Do not know why, but it always seems to end like that.

Just continue to nurture your relationship with each of them separately. In time things will sort out, or not. That is their business. Your business is to love them both and keep out of their arguments.

Greenfinch Sun 24-Jan-16 12:26:12

Well said. The helper often becomes the victim in these situations.

Iam64 Sun 24-Jan-16 13:04:54

Yes, avoid being drawn in to act as 'go between', the potential for things being mis heard or mis quoted is just to big.
Listen to both of them and avoid taking sides. Easier said than done but getting over involved so often ends in tears.

NanaandGrampy Sun 24-Jan-16 13:20:29

Totally agree with the other posters. Its the old adage about shooting the messenger.

Listen but try not to comment just support both sides.

Falconbird Sun 24-Jan-16 14:13:48

I do so agree with the other Grans.

My youngest son will have nothing to do with my two eldest sons since my dh passed away. I would hate to pass on thinking the rift will never be healed but there is sadly very little I can do.

Stay strong over60plus and I hope the situation will be resolved. flowers

mumofmadboys Sun 24-Jan-16 18:03:48

I think males can be quite stubborn. I would find it very hard to say nothing if my son wasn't speaking to his own son. I do respect what other posters have said but just wonder if you could say to your son something like ' It makes me feel sad that you and X aren't getting on at the moment ' and see what is said!. Sometimes a little prod may make someone see that it is the stronger one who says sorry and tries to make amends. I don't suppose either son or grandson are happy about the situation really. I hope things improve.

LuckyDucky Mon 25-Jan-16 03:41:02

m0nica - totally agree.

Our sons keep their arguments to themselves. One son has been trained how to defuse arguments smile

Olympia Mon 25-Jan-16 08:44:45

How I understand the heartache felt here. I am slowly coming to the realisation that we have to stand back at times - although this is so against our natural instincts to jump in and "fix" every situation to "protect" our children. This starts with a brand new baby and whoa! we are still ready to spring into action - even when they are old enough to be grandparents themselves! Doing nothing is sometimes the hardest thing. Our youngest son and our eldest son (we have three) have not spoken to each other for about seven years. We don't know why but there was a lot of rivalry. So birthdays. Christmas and all happy family times have to be done TWICE to accommodate the different factions. Middle son is neutral. I too constantly think about if/when dh dies - or when I do - what will happen? I hate confrontation and dread what will happen when the inevitable happens and we must all be together. This is particularly stressful as both dh and I ALWAYS worked so very very hard to provide a united and happy family life as I came from a crippling dysfunctional family and for this terrible rift to exist is truly heartbreaking for us. We were all happy until seven odd years ago. Sons are 42 and 47. There is no hope of reconciliation. I dread our funerals and have thought about as I ng them not to attend if there is still a rift. My dh has approached youngest son but he is deadly adamant they will never be reconciled. To think we used to think as soon as they were grown up all our worries would be over.

Anya Mon 25-Jan-16 09:22:00

I actually disagree about not getting involved. But I wouldn't neccessarily be giving 'advice'.

I'd be asking one, or other, or both how things are going. And then letting them vent about the situation. By listening very carefully and just interjecting the odd comment or question it is possible to get people to see the situation from another perspective. This is the technique used by counsellors and is not about giving advice.

jinglbellsfrocks Mon 25-Jan-16 09:30:48

I would do everything in my power to help to mend the relationship. Not as a 'go between' - awful thought. I would try talking to each of them separately, trying to get them to see each other's point of view, but without damaging my relationship with either of them.

I would be prepared to not have much success though. They are both adults and they alone know their true feelings.

Judthepud2 Mon 25-Jan-16 21:30:15

Yesterday I tried being a go between between DD and her son when they were having a big row at ours. BAD mistake! DD turned on me and stormed out of the house. shock

Wouldn't recommend it. But agree, keep your own good relationship going with both.

starbird Tue 26-Jan-16 10:27:13

I am a middle child with two sisters who don't get on. I have remained neutral and done what Anya suggests for 20 years. When my younger sister lost her husband, my older one (already a widow) came to the funeral and for a while after that they started seeing each other again, but it did not last, they are too different and end up hurting each other when old resentments start to come out. It is a much harder situation with your own son and grandson, I agree that you should stay out of it, be a good listener, let the matter rest, but if it comes up, and you get the chance, make mild comments that help them to see the other side's point of you. But you have to be very careful if you do this or they will both think you are on the other's side and you will lose their trust. Hopefully by the time you pass on they will have matured/things will have cooled and they will both attend and be civil.

Grandma2213 Wed 27-Jan-16 02:05:42

It is so sad to hear when families fall out! over60plus I agree with other posters that you should do your best to stay neutral and maintain your good relationships.

Olympia I am so sorry to hear about the rift between your 2 DSs. It must break your heart. Luckily my 3 DS's are very close despite the constant fighting when they were younger and the fact that they are very different characters.

Their father left when the youngest was 7yrs and very soon lost contact with them despite my efforts to encourage it. We have, on the other hand, always maintained a good relationship with his sister and her DC.
After 10 years he made contact again. I won't go into detail but he did some dreadful things to me which DSs will never forgive though I have now moved on. As a result they have told their own DC that they have no Dad which I find very upsetting. On the plus side their experience has made them brilliant fathers themselves and despite broken relationships they would never give up on their own DC.

UkeCan61 Sun 21-Feb-16 20:11:27

Olympia I really feel for you as I have a similar situation in my family. Although my DH is not my kids' dad as it is my 2nd marriage (we've been together for 20 years) I have 2 DD age 40 + 34 and a DS age 37. My eldest DD has over the years suffered depression and mental health issues and when she is down she lets it all out on members of the family. She seems to alternate not speaking to a certain family member after instigating an argument. It was my turn a few years ago. My ex husband died suddenly 5 years ago and prior to his death she hadn't spoken to him for 2 years even though he was always a good dad. My DS was a drug addict for 15 years and eventually successfully completed rehab and met a girl and rushed into marriage, buying a house (in her name) and having a baby. Making up for lost time we think. We knew they weren't right for eachother as there was friction from the start. His wife turned out to be have similar traits to my DD. The 2 - my DD and my DIL teamed up and turned my son against us and my other DD. (My DD sent me the most horrible hate messages which made me feel like a failure as a mum.) Then they all fell out as well. Now my DD has moved down to London and is not speaking to any of us. My DS and wife have split up and she won't let him or us see the baby. My youngest DD is heartbroken because she no longer has a brother or sister and her 2 little girls don't know their uncle and aunty. What a mess and a really tangled story. I was really upset all last year but have been to counselling and have to get on with my life and enjoy the 2 DGC I have contact with. I feel immense grief for the 'loss' of my eldest daughter who I obviously still love. I pray that she is happy and well in London and that nothing bad happens to her. My DH is a great support and always stays neutral.