Gransnet forums

Ask a gran

granddaughter moving

(58 Posts)
coleen21 Thu 27-Jun-19 16:58:11

hey everybody, i need your help,

my son announced last week he's moving his family, including our only grandchild, 6 yr. old granddaughter, 3000 miles away. we are in the states. it's is literally from one coast to the other.

right now they are a 2 hour drive away, which we've done every 3 weeks since she was born.

while we don't get to spend as much time as we'd like with her we are quite close and she grieves each time we leave.

this move has me quite upset and i don't know quite how to deal with it. i will miss not only my little girl, but our son as well.

we have one other child, but she is in europe and we've had no contact with her for over 10 years. she has no children.

i just can't stop crying. they move in 10 days. sometimes i wish it would happen tomorrow so i could just get my life back.

so, will there be life after they leave? how am i going to survive not having her little hugs?

BlueBelle Thu 27-Jun-19 17:05:35

Of course there will be life after they move it will be tough but you will adjust and there are so many ways to keep in touch nowadays
It’s obviously something they feel is a necessary move so just wish them well with a big old smile have your cry in private then make some plans as to how you will keep in touch with your precious granddaughter

She’s 6 years old and you ve seen her every three weeks since she was born, how lucky are you Distance won’t break that bond I know how it works five out of seven of my grandkids live overseas 😊

coleen21 Thu 27-Jun-19 17:35:26

thank you. today is just a rough day.

yes, we've built a solid relationship with her over the past 6 years. this grandparent love is really something, isn't it?

we will miss her terribly. and my husband (her Paka) and i are fairly tech savvy so, i know we'll figure this thing out.

i just need to cry some more!

Daisymae Thu 27-Jun-19 18:37:58

I guess you will develop a new relationship, maybe see them less frequently but for slightly longer? Nothing stays the same, that's life. It will take a bit of time but you will adjust.

crazyH Thu 27-Jun-19 18:47:24

Cry as much as you want but only, today. Tomorrow, try to look at it like this.....they're going to be in the same country. I know it's 3000 miles away, but the earth is shrinking with cheap and direct flights. And then there's FaceTime, Skype, phones etc . I guess they are moving with work, for their future ? So, let them take with them your love and best wishes.
Sorry to hear about the situation with your daughter. I also have a difficult relationship with mine.
Take care xx

GoodMama Thu 27-Jun-19 19:12:10

Hugs to you COleen21! I agree with PP - say "see you later" (it's not goodbye), then have a good cry.

Then! Go out on a fun date with your husband. Make some fun plans for the summer and fall with him that are just about the two of you.

Don't contact your son. Let him settle in. Moving is stressful. When he's settled he'll give you a call and catch you up on what life is like on their new adventure.

Be happy for him and his family. Ask about his job, the house, the city... and only briefly ask about his daughter. Be sure to show the most interest in him. Then get off the phone because you have plans (and actually have plans).

Be a busy busy bee!

Change can be exhilarating if you take control of the only thing you can control - you! smile

Grammaretto Thu 27-Jun-19 19:32:30

The love you have for each-other is no respecter of distance!
Think yourself lucky that you have such a good relationship with your DS and his daughter.
Sorry to hear about the no contact DD. sad

coleen21 Thu 27-Jun-19 22:38:30

thank you everyone for picking me up out of my dark place this morning! i feel much better this afternoon!

we are happy for him and his new job. i will focus on that. GoodMama, thank you for the advice to focus on him when we call. great advice! this move will enable them to get a much larger house than before, which they desperately need!

thanks, again!

Luckygirl Thu 27-Jun-19 23:11:12

Tell her how exciting it is that they are starting a new life and how much you are looking forward to skyping her/sending and receiving letters/hearing her news on the phone etc.

Let her make some suggestions about fun ways of keeping in touch - I don't know, sending each other pictures of different animals A-Z; sending photos of her new bedroom; seeing who can think of the silliest names for dolls......etc.

And make her a personal present for her bed - pj case, embroidered pillow case, new nightie etc. - and tell her that every time she uses them you will be sending her a goodnight kiss.

Lots of silly stuff like that.

coleen21 Fri 28-Jun-19 02:08:54

luckygirl, great ideas!

she loves stuffed animals, so we're giving her our favorite teddy bear, a soft cuddly guy and we're spending the next 10 days hugging and kissing it so her bear will be full of grandma and paka hugs and kisses. then when she needs a hug or kiss she can grab Cubbins.

Willow500 Fri 28-Jun-19 06:11:59

Your GD is 6 and has had you in her life on a daily basis so you've already built up that early bond which won't be forgotten. Yes it will be hard but internal flights in the US seem to be much easier to do that transatlantic flights so I'm sure you'll still be able to get together. Face Time on a regular basis and send her a couple of books keeping a copy for yourself so you can read to her as she looks at hers - a tip someone gave me when my son emigrated to NZ.

To begin with her new life will be full of excitement and you might think you've been left behind but you will adjust - don't forget your son will also need to get used to a new job as well as this move and will miss you both too. Be happy for them and cry when no one's watching.

NfkDumpling Fri 28-Jun-19 07:22:29

Face time and Skype are great and very useful if your DGD is happy to use them but my distant DGDs (7 and 11) loose interest and wander off after a few minutes so don’t expect long meaningful conversations!

I worked out that I actually see as much, if not more of my distant DGC than I do of the ones who live closer. This is because they come to stay two or three times a year. My DGD time with them is just much more concentrated. When they come we do more and go out more and talk more. It’s a different relationship. Not better or worse, just different.

BradfordLass72 Fri 28-Jun-19 08:15:57

I'm still old fashioned enough to believe in snail mail in addition to all the tch ways of keeping in touch.

My youngest grandson (10) loves getting mail, so I write him stories, or letters or send him a list of silly jokes.

There are also some great games online for younger children and you could send links.

My grand-daughter, now working in London, grew up with this site.

leyla Fri 28-Jun-19 08:32:29

Each time you visit them or them you, book the next visit in each other’s diaries otherwise it’s easy for time to slip by. That way you always have a next time to look forward to.

I understand what other posters say about them having their own life etc., but I also feel that your son and DIL have to accept that you have feelings too and accommodate your desire to see them regularly in their new life.

Start saving so that you can afford to hop over there as often as possible. In the fullness of time, maybe you might decide to move closer to them?

Aepgirl Fri 28-Jun-19 09:33:14

I feel for you Coleen21. Of course it will be hard. Perhaps you can add their new address for a regular holiday destination. Just let them know (not too dramatically) how you feel and think as positively as you can. Good luck.

EllanVannin Fri 28-Jun-19 09:40:49

Well I have to brace myself next week when my D goes back to Oz because I know it could be the last time I'll hug her. I'm not fit enough now to do the distance and the family won't be visiting again in the near future, but I just have to accept this and live with it.

sarahellenwhitney Fri 28-Jun-19 09:49:15

My family live four thousand miles away and it was their choice .You get used to it and technology which I am thankful for allows us to communicate twenty four seven and air travel although it can be tiring gives me the option to visit.

red1 Fri 28-Jun-19 09:51:24

its a tough time for sure.Here is my advice-2 years ago my son suddenly moved from England to Ireland,the 2 grandchildren went with them.I went through a form of grief ,shock denial etc,my initial reaction was' im going with them'
a neighbours good advice was 'give them a year or so to settle' 2 years on they are settled.Ive been through the usual things, keep busy etc, but I miss them so much,as soon as I find a suitable property, im joining them.Despite all the problems with surviving families,for me its where the heart is...

jaylucy Fri 28-Jun-19 09:52:40

So much easier these days than it was when I lived in Oz - we only had letters each week and phone calls once a month!
You can always set up a Skype account so you can talk to them all via a video link and like others have said - it may even be cheaper to fly to see them than the cost of driving a couple of hundred miles.
Love the idea with the teddy bear though!

Elderlyfirsttimegran Fri 28-Jun-19 10:09:29

My DD, S-in-L and tiny children came to live with me for a couple of years. Eventually they found a lovely home of their own and moved 20 minutes away! I felt bereft. I see them, of course, but it’s not the same. But they’re all so happy in their home. I wouldn’t change anything. My son is in the US. I visit him once a year. Modern life is difficult for family relationships just because people are able to take jobs all over the world. Couldn’t you fly to see them regularly and Have the dates in your diaries? FaceTime is wonderful for children. It’s sad for you and I absolutely understand how sad you feel.

Juicylucy Fri 28-Jun-19 10:15:38

Loads of great advise already given. I feel your pain as my youngest DD and GDs live in Australia.
What about offering to have her for a week or two in the school holidays you could fly over and collect her or vice versa, that way you get to get a chunk of quality time with her just you and her and it gives your DS a break as well.

sarahcyn Fri 28-Jun-19 10:19:45

Oh how painful!
But there are school holidays - vacation as you call it - when surely her parents will be glad of loving grandparents who can have gd to stay for lovely long stays of a week or more, and as you have a proper relationship with her already she won't find it daunting. And you'll have her all to yourself!

GoldenAge Fri 28-Jun-19 10:31:03

Your son announced last week that his move is happening in just 10 days’ time? Is it really believable that from him knowing about this to actually moving is 17 days? He must have known a long time beforehand and simply not told you and the big question you might want to ask is why? What does his wife think about all this? These would be two questions I would want answering if it were me. They can’t fail to see that your relationship with your son and your grandchild will change - so they want that? I think you have to discuss what they envisage as your future relationship and then say what you want - maybe they’d be happy for you to contemplate moving close to them if you have no other family ties where you are now. Is this a work-related move which may be only for a couple of years? I know lots of people who seem to be permanent travellers as a result of one of the marriage partners working in a huge corporate enterprise and they uproot every few years. i would want to get to the bottom of the reason for moving.

Patticake123 Fri 28-Jun-19 10:37:53

Oh Coleen, I do feel for you. My son lives in the USA with two of my grandchildren and I miss them so much. However, we do FaceTime every week and I send them little gifts regularly so that we remain a part of their lives. Also, we save everything we can and try to get to NY at least once a year. It isn’t perfect but it’s better than not having grandchildren. You will find ways of coping and this group can help to support you for many of us are in a similar situation and have a pretty good idea of what you are going through.

Buntybunny21 Fri 28-Jun-19 10:42:15

Love the teddy bear idea. My son lives most of year in Fiji from UK, it is about a 36 hour journey which I can't face doing now, having travelled the world. So 3000 miles in the same country is more doable, wish Fiji was only that distance!! Use Skype, it helps and make plans to visit. My daughter is 150 miles away but I visit 3 times yearly which is nice. Do you have a pet because a dog or cat are a comfort when alone and feeling down, although I see you have a hubby. All the best.