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How to get DD through this

(22 Posts)
Seb2015 Fri 25-Nov-16 12:18:39

Really sorry for what is going to be a long post but I could do with some advice. My DD has suffered from anxiety and depression since early teens; she is now 23 and last Christmas was admitted to hospital because she was suicidal and had a total breakdown. Although there were other issues, the underpinning one was that her dad abandoned her when we separated even though he lived quite close by. This last year has been a long road but she is so much better now - even thinking about returning to education. She did really well in her GCSEs despite no work but got low grades in her A levels because of her depression.

Anyway, to backtrack a little. Her dad's mum, whom DD adored and was still in contact with, died (just as DD was beginning her A levels, which naturally upset her a lot). All that was left of her paternal family was an uncle, who had returned to his parents' home when his marriage broke down and who never moved out, and her grandad. The uncle, although friendly when she saw him, never felt like family to her, but she loved her grandad dearly and saw him and spoke to him on the phone as often as she could. He never made contact with her, it was always DD that initiated contact. This isn't because he didn't love her, she had grown up knowing that she was adored by these grandparents.

Anyway, after his wife died grandad went somewhat to pieces and the uncle and his girlfriend took over the house - decorating it to their taste (which was certainly not in keeping with what it was like), demolishing the beautiful garden with tat, uprooting rose beds, gravelling as much as they could etc. Certainly, they were looking after Grandad in as much as taking him to his hospital appointments and cooking - but they never paid a bill or contributed financially. (This is fact, not supposition).

DD's errant father used to visit his dad quite often, even though at this point he still was having nothing to do with DD. She used to get really upset and felt that if she didn't make the effort she would be excluded from the family through thoughtlessness - none of this helped her mental state; she felt totally rejected by them.

A few months ago, I contacted DD's dad. Previous attempts had been blanked but this time he listened to how ill she had been and he has come good - totally contrite and supporting her however he can.

Grandad was thrilled at the reconciliation and things were ok. Anyway, last month grandad died. Throughout his illness, DD was always there, was the one the doctors liaised with and she insisted on being a pallbearer and giving a eulogy. Yesterday, the will was read - and the beneficiary is the uncle, and it's quite substantial. Absolutely fine, it was grandad's will to make - except DD is feeling absolutely rejected all over again and I'm really worried about her frame of mind. It's not, absolutely not, about the money - except that it sort of is - grandad knew that she was struggling financially (she has a 4-year old son and is a single mother because her son's dad is another waste of space) and he has done nothing to help her. Although this post is massively long, it does nothing to convey her terrible struggle to get back on track mentally; what I can I do to make this journey of feeling rejected again any better for her? Any thoughts are really welcome.

annsixty Fri 25-Nov-16 16:29:24

Oh dear how sad I feel for you both. I really don't know how to help you but just wanted you to know I am thinking of you. Is there even the remotest possibility the Uncle will share his inheritance? My son also suffers from anxiety and depression and I feel powerless to help him just like you but he is 46 and doesn't welcome me worrying him and I have had to step back.
You can only be there for your D and her son and I hope her father steps op to the line and helps as well.
Best wishes to you all and a return to good mental health for your D.

Seb2015 Fri 25-Nov-16 16:48:01

Thank you Annsixty; I really appreciate your good wishes

Lona Fri 25-Nov-16 16:49:42

Seb That is sad. My daughter also suffers from terrible depression and I just help her by keeping in touch as often as I can. I listen to her, reassure her, boost her confidence as much as possible, by telling her all the things that she is so good at. Just being her mum really. It does help her.

Seb2015 Fri 25-Nov-16 16:54:16

Lona and Ann, mental illness is so hard - and there is so little support. Thank goodness for mums - but it's so easy to get wrong isn't it? Best wishes to both of you.

Hilltopgran Fri 25-Nov-16 16:58:06

What a long road you and your DD have travelled, you seem to have done everything possible to support your daughter. When a loved one passes, it is not as you say just about the money, would the Uncle give your DD the choice of an item to remember him by, not necessarily valuable just something that reminds her of him. Could her father talk to his brother, and see if something can be sorted out. If DDs father is also not in will could that help her to see it was just a practical decision based on who had been living with him.

When my Mother died, I took a ring of hers to DD abroad as a momento and she was thrilled to have something as a reminder of her Gran, but she could also keep without the worry of a large or breakable item when she moves.

trisher Fri 25-Nov-16 17:03:33

Seb2015 how awful for your DD. The only thing you can tell her is that she did absolutely the right thing, that you are so proud of her for the commitment and strength she showed in caring for her GD and in taking a leading role in his funeral. Then you have to explain that sometimes things are not rewarded as they should be and that sometimes prats like her uncle benefit. It doesn't mean her GD didn't love and appreciate her just that her uncle nagged and possibly bullied her GD, who probably just wanted a quiet life. It isn't rejection and it doesn't mean he didn't care for her. She has the knowledge that she did absolutely the right thing and her GD benefited from her love and care.
You could ask the uncle if he would be prepared to give her a small proportion of the estate in recognition of her work (but it sounds to me like that would never happen.)
She sounds a lovely girl and I hope her life improves in the future.

Candlefran Fri 25-Nov-16 17:13:26

Sadly, I don't think there is anything either of you can do about this. It is a really unfair, and unkind, situation.

I think many men just can't, are not able to, give any real thought to the feelings of others. I am truly sorry for your daughter. flowers

Luckygirl Fri 25-Nov-16 19:21:48

How very hard for you all. So sorry that your DD has suffered from depression - it is a situation that I do understand.

I am not sure that any sharing by the uncle would help - the hurt is in the fact that her grandad left her out of the will and even giving her some money could not quell that hurt.

You can only do your best to encourage her to feel proud of her role in the funeral and during his last months. You cannot turn the clock back and she cannot "unknow " the contents of the will. I do hope that your DD will weather this setback as quickly as possible and send you every good wish.

M0nica Fri 25-Nov-16 21:19:04

Grandparents often do not see a need to leave money to their grandchildren. My parents divided their estate between me and my sister. Their grandchildren received nothing. I made a deed of arrangement with my share of the money so that some money would go to them and my sister did something similar.

It is so easy when you feel low, lack self esteem and are struggling with other problems to take every kick you receive as personal and aimed at you and your problems, when often it is just that 'sh*t happens'. Whether your daughter in her current state she can appreciate this, I would think unlikely at present.

Dealing with family deaths is never easy, but when you lose two dearly loved family members as she has, it can be very debilitating and cause depression. Has she been in touch with any of the bereavement charities like who can give professional targetted support. Encourage her to see the good thay has arisen like the presence of her father in her life again.

This not a quick fix problem. All we can do is offer love and support and make a few suggestion, one or two of which may bring some help.

Seb2015 Sat 26-Nov-16 15:33:34

Thank you all for your kind words and suggestions. I don't know if any of you realise just how valuable these are - it feels like a very real support network so thank you again.

Elrel Sun 27-Nov-16 02:42:59

Glad you are getting thoughtful support here, Gransnet at its best 💐

Crafting Sun 27-Nov-16 20:53:52

Maybe the uncle and his girlfriend might have put pressure on grandfather in some way to persuade him to leave all the money to them. Grandfather obviously left out his other son too. Who knows exactly what is going on in someone's mind when they make their will.

it sounds to me as though your DD is looking in the wrong place for her feelings of self worth. I think she should be looking towards her mother who obviously loves her dearly. Hopefully her father will continue to give her support but her mum has been there for her all this time. So many don't have that love. She is a lucky girl I hope she comes to realise it. flowers for all those with depression and the people who love them.💕

MummyBtothree Mon 28-Nov-16 02:30:49

flowers Seb2015 my heart goes out to you and your daughter. Im 37 and suffer from anxiety and depression as a result of years of emotional abuse from my parents and broke contact with the family and moved 70 miles away to protect myself and my children. Unfortunately my mother has turned my only brother against me and sadly my Grandma who is in her nineties now whom I was always close to but haven't seen for 7 years now. I know that my mother has tainted my character and turned everything around on me to prevent anybody thinking anything remotely bad of her. My grandma pleads forgiveness on behalf of my mother but sadly she is absolutely clueless about her own daughter. She says she wants nothing else on earth but to see us reunited and all forgiven and then she can leave this earth in peace and pleads for me to give her that. My heart is broken and my head completely messed up. I have counselling and medication but I know that when something does happen to my grandma, I will probably feel alot like your daughter is at the moment. My heart goes out to you both and your family and I'm so sorry for your loss. All I can say is just be there for her and keep up the wonderful job you are doing in being her mum x

Jane10 Mon 28-Nov-16 06:39:11

Clueless? About her own daughter? I wonder...

MummyBtothree Mon 28-Nov-16 07:34:55

Nearly as clueless as you wink

Seb2015 Mon 28-Nov-16 11:19:41

MummyB, I really feel for you xxx

Jane10 Mon 28-Nov-16 12:53:31

I'm happy you've found each other. wink

GrandmaMoira Mon 28-Nov-16 15:54:01

I'm sure you being there for her will help. It is also true as Monica said that people usually leave their estate to their children, not their grandchildren. Maybe this uncle will leave her money in his will?

icanhandthemback Mon 28-Nov-16 19:11:22

I do feel for you and your daughter but I'm not sure there is anything that can be done without treatment and changing your daughter's way of thinking. I mean that in the kindest way. My daughter was also abandoned by her DD which has been made worse by the fact he has 4 sons who he has always made efforts to see. All her life she has been desperate to be accepted by him but all the running has had to come from her. The moment she stops, she doesn't hear from him. It is soul destroying especially when he told her he didn't like her very much because she is too like me. She did lots of self harming, etc. When she had her first child though, it all changed. She took her over to see him and he was enthralled, said he was going to be more involved. That never happened. All of a sudden my DD has made the decision that she doesn't need him or the other members of the family. Her attention is focussed on her little girl and lots of her anxiety issues are abating.
As an abandoned child by her fathers (my DM was a serial wife!) I can tell you I was in my 30's before I came to grips with it all.
Hope that gives you some hope x

norton Tue 29-Nov-16 16:50:07

I buy my children things and regularly say this is from your grandmother as she definitely would have wanted to help, even though she died 15 years ago. Would the uncle be able to offer a gift(s) as though from your daughter's grandfather. If she was thought of little and often that might help.

ajanela Sun 01-Jan-17 09:03:46

Icanhandthemback you have expressed what I was thinking. Get these poisonous people and relationships out of your life and Seb2015 this is what you must encourage your daughter to do. Your daughter has you and her child and this is where she needs to be encouraged to focus her attention and have some happy times.

When I say poisonous I don't mean they are bald people but they have their own priorities and cannot meet your daughters expectations. Your daughter with need care and help from her doctors but the future is her child and making her own life