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Grand kids moved.

(28 Posts)
GrammaDebi Mon 26-Jun-17 02:22:58

I'm new, as of today. My son and his wife divorced during this last year and yesterday my ex Dil and the 2 children, (boy-biologically my sons and named after my late husband, age 7 and girl not biologically my sons, but he has always adored and treated her as his own, as do I, age 10) moved 5 hours away. My heart is broken, there are complexities as well, but I know I won't be seeing the kids often at all. I regularly cared for the kids at their home and at my own, often for overnights and have for years. They have there own dressers here, etc. toy areas, tree house, swings, pool etc and everywhere I turn in my home are reminders of them, which is VERY hard for me right now. I have been in high anxiety and utterly distraught since the actual departure yesterday and I'd like to know how others may have gotten through this heartbreaking sadness. Thank you.

suzied Mon 26-Jun-17 05:47:11

Presumably your son will still have regular contact? Would he bring them to yours in the holidays? How do you get on with ex DiL? If they come and stay for holidays you will have them for an extended period . This is so hard for you now, but lots of GPs have GC a distance away but still maintain a great relationship. They will love coming to you in the holidays and will have fond memories of grandmas house and what a fun place it is.

Anya Mon 26-Jun-17 06:16:58

It'll be like a grieving process. Don't be afraid to cry. It will, eventually, get easier.

I'm hoping you've separated from your DiL on good enough terms to be allowed to Skype your grandchildren and perhaps go for occasional visits or have the GC visit you?

Sadly it will mean a long period of adjusting to life without seeing them on a regular basis. Try to keep yourself busy but allow yourself to be sad too (((hugs)))

Anneishere Mon 26-Jun-17 10:29:30

I do hope you and DiL are amicable as this will ease the pain a little in that, as Anya says, there will be occasional visits & there is Skype. It is going to be difficult for you the fact you were seeing your grandchildren regularly. My sister's daughter lives in New Zealand and the keep in very regular contact via Skype and phone- my sister does manage to get to NZ once a year for approximately 3/4 weeks when all her time goes on her grandchildren
& her daughter tries to visit UK also once a year. The grandchildren absolutely adore my sister and always look so forward to seeing their nanny who lives in UK. Easier said than done at times but yes do keep yourself busy rather than give yourself too much time to think. Thinking of you & keep us all updated x

Craftycat Mon 26-Jun-17 10:37:50

I do know how you are feeling although my DGC only went 40 mns away. It was still a blow- especially as I was still distraught about marriage breakdown- my son's fault in the main TBH. I knew my DiL since she was 16 & I was so fond of her.
You will see the GC when your son has them & maybe in holidays they would like to come & stay with you as a treat- hopefully you are on good terms with ex DiL. You have made the bond & it will still be strong for them so they will be pestering to come & see you. I have to say though that as they get older they want to spend more time with mates & less with Grandma- it's natural but it still hurts.
You will make it work. I'm thinking of you.x

damewithaname Mon 26-Jun-17 10:40:07

It's such a sad situation. So many families (more and more) being dissolved. I think people just aren't putting enough effort into "for better or WORSE".. Its too easy to say "I'm out"... my suggestion is to start a project that will take your mind off of this.

Everthankful Mon 26-Jun-17 10:41:49

I'm in the same position. when my son brings them to his home for a while during the holidays, we make the most of it with lots of quality time. Also, we video chat quite often so it doesn't feel as though they are so far away. DIL posts their school achievements, and when they all had chickenpox, etc., on FB so I still feel involved in their lives

RAF Mon 26-Jun-17 11:09:29

It will be hard, but it will get easier (a bit). My son left to live abroad, we had been looking after the grandchildren, and he won't Skype, answer the phone, or even respond to texts or email half the time, just the way he is. We manage to get out to see them once a year, all we can afford. One of the best pieces of advice we had, from this forum, was to send a book out to each child regularly, along with letters, and we have done that, helps us to feel we are having some kind of contact. Hopefully your son will be better at allowing electronic contact with your grandchildren. When it gets too much, just tell him you are going to be in the area and coming to visit, if the invites are not forthcoming!

inishowen Mon 26-Jun-17 11:24:25

Try to look on the positive side. They are five hours away, not living in Australia. I'm sure you could have them for a weekend, say once a month. Stay friendly with your DIL. That's really important. Phone the children, send them silly postcards, books, photos etc., Explain to your DIL that you are missing her and the children, and tell her you want to help out by taking them any time she needs a break. I wish you all the luck in this tricky situation.

legray22 Mon 26-Jun-17 11:43:47

My heart bleeds for you...

Deborahuns Mon 26-Jun-17 11:52:20

I sympathise totally. Our grandchildren live abroad and it's terribly hard however much we Skype, exchange visits or email. Just stay in contact and do what you can. My kids whatsapp photos constantly and that helps us keep up with daily things. Maybe she would agree to do that? Keep goingxx

ethelwulf Mon 26-Jun-17 11:56:46

All to common these days, I'm afraid, and I do sympathise as we've been there too. All I can say from our own experience is to salvage whatever you can from the debris of the failed relationship, and however difficult, try not to take sides, which can be fatal. OK, you're now 5 hours away, but at least that's do-able. Work at maintaining a caring relationship with EVERYONE involved, and you may be surprised at how much better things look just a short way down the road. Provided you work at it, you'll get there... We did...

Hm999 Mon 26-Jun-17 12:02:11

Please remember that it will be new to the little ones too, so they will appreciate letters, photos, cards, Skypes etc. Ask them about new school, activities ext. Perhaps you can organise a week in holidays for them to stay. And keep referring to her as Dil, not ex Dil, she's still family. Good luck

radicalnan Mon 26-Jun-17 12:22:31

Nothing lasts forever, not even your own life, so try to make the most of it. Your family haven't moved to thwart you, they have gone off in search of happiness whch is exactly what you want for them.

Is is such a wrench but you can build new ways of being involved with them and find something new for yourself. Love, is a kick in the pants mostly, causes far more pain we give it credit for, but you will see on here you are not alone by any means.

newnanny Mon 26-Jun-17 13:28:33

Write your DiL a letter explaining how sad you were the marriage broke down but you do understand why she has moved to start a new life and wish her luck. Tell her how hard you will find it without DGC and ask her if you could have them for a week in the summer holidays either at home or suggest she and DGC go on week holiday with you, which is only a few weeks away. Tell her she is a good mother to your DGC and you appreciate that and you also love your DGC and want to remain involved in their lives. If you think she would be receptive you could tell her you fear losing their affection.

nannalyn53 Mon 26-Jun-17 13:37:58

I do feel for you as my grandchildren are in or near London and I'm in Cornwall, about 6 hours travelling.
Perhaps send your ex DIL a card for their new home (she may be struggling to present the move in a positive light to the kids, who will probably be anxious and even miserable, esp the older one). Say you will continue to be there for them all, and despite the distance want to keep in regular touch with them. Depending on your relationship with her, you may be able to say more eg about not taking sides etc
It will be tough,but I think you will reap the rewards of all the love you have given over the years as long as you remain positive now and keep channels of communication open. It means looking to the future though, which is hard at times like this.

Cosafina Mon 26-Jun-17 13:41:11

I feel for you GrammaDebi - even though I've never had my DGS as near as I'd like, I have had just him to stay sometimes for a week or so, have loved every exhausting minute of it, then felt the house so empty after he's gone. It's amazing how such a small person can entirely fill a house with their presence!
I think newnanny gives good advice - you'll see them less, but you can make sure you still see them. My heart goes out to you flowers

EllenMay Mon 26-Jun-17 14:56:01

We were in this situation in 2002 when our 6 year old DG and her mum moved over five hours drive away. We were heartbroken as was her father, my DS. Over the years we gradually came to terms with it as we found different ways of maintaining contact with her. It was not easy but we found the key was staying positive and providing our exDIL with lots of support, including financial at times. Our DG is now twenty and we have a wonderful relationship with her don't lose heart, GrammaDebi flowers

milkflake Mon 26-Jun-17 16:16:55

It's horrible, I know how you feel , my eldest Son took his family to USA , we used to go twice a year, can't afford to do that now. Also as we get older the travelling gets harder.
It will get easier , but life will never be the same as it was. Just enjoy every minute you see them when they are with their Dad.
They will get to use all their things when you do see them, maybe put what you can into cupboards right now so you are seeing them all the time.
I was heartbroken when they went, of course you are too. Will your ex DIL let you call them or Skype them?

When mine went there was no Skype and no forums to go to chat about how I was feeling. I hope it's helped you being able to "talk" to people about it. Reading the previous posts you will see you are not alone .

trendygran Mon 26-Jun-17 16:24:17

A difficult situation all round, but unfortunately more and more common nowadays.. Two of my four grandchildren live almost 300miles away from me and I rarely see them. Sadly we all lost. Their Mum ( my younger daughter) 7 years ago as a result of postnatal depression which was not treated properly. They already lived all those miles away so I did not really know what was happening. Also I lost my DH very suddenly 16 months earlier so he never knew what happened.
My SIL has a new partner who is ,all but biologically, a wonderful Mum to my Granddaughters, but the hurt remains and the distance makes seeing them a rare event. I do have my surviving DD ,SIL and 2 grandchildren nearby , but even so don't see them as often as I would like as they work shifts for NHS and free weekends are rare.
I hope you can somehow come to terms with your new situation and take comfort that you are far from being the only distant Grandparent.

campbellwise Mon 26-Jun-17 16:36:22

Dear GrammaDebi.

First and foremost, my heart goes out to you. My son is also divorced and sees his girls alternate weekends and one night in the week. We see them whenever we can. SO....action stations. Get on Skype. Write to them every week with funny things you have seen and done. Enclose pictures. Send them small gifts particularly books. In other words, keep them close in your heart and remember that some grandparents live the other side of the world to their grandchildren. And, ask now if you can visit them in, say, September or October and find a nice local B & B so you can be independent from their Mum. You have been a brilliant grandmother and you can carry on being one albeit at a distance. Good luck.

Tessa101 Mon 26-Jun-17 17:21:55

It is hard at first but you do adapt, my DD took her family to Australia 7 years ago, 23 hour journey 10,000 miles away 11 hour time difference. I cried for days, then we started skyping then came FaceTime now I share in lots of things with them thanks to technology, I chat to them about there Day/ holidays friends etc and I even read bedtime story to the youngest GD. It is all about making use of what's available to you. It's not the same as being in same room but it's far better than nothing at all.Heres to hoping you have good relationship with dil.

Julesbejust2016 Mon 26-Jun-17 21:09:20

If you have your DIL new addresses write a letter of kind support.letting her know that you would love to see the children as you always have and offer for them to stay over as before..

Saggi Tue 27-Jun-17 09:08:44

So sad for GrammaDebi
My daughter and SIL are 'separated' although you'd hardly notice. They practice 'Bird-Nest' parenting. At the moment it seems to be working... when one of them leaves 'the nest' the other takes over. They make a point of having two family evenings where they all eat dinner together and are together on Sunday pm to enjoy doing family stuff. Park or cinema or pokmomon hunting! It of course won't be on a permanent basis but while children are happy they are happy doing it.If you've not heard of 'Bird-Nest' parenting... look it up. It seems to work for them.More people should examine his way of dealing with break-up.

Serkeen Tue 27-Jun-17 10:14:17

These days there are so many ways to keep in contact, best way is SKYPE, please explore it if you haven't already.

Also the family must have gotten on well with you as you have been doing so much baby sitting for them in their home and in yours, as you say, and so perhaps you could plan a few visits to their new home I'm sure they will be pleased for the help, you could visit just two or three days at a time or perhaps a week, what ever feels comfortable for the both of you.

Turn it into a new adventure, if you like the area that they have moved to, it might also be a possibility that you move closer to the family.

It will all work out for the best smile