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Loving relationship with married adult DS?

(113 Posts)
Yummysushi Thu 05-Sep-19 22:32:35

Hi grans,

I’m suffering some DIL guilt and would like you all to boast to me about your positive relationships with your sons who are married if possible as all I see around me is people making it sound like that relationship is impossible.

What weekly/daily/monthly things does your DS do that make you feel like you still have a son/close friend and not that you “lived your life” and now he has only one woman in his life that he can have a meaningful relationship with hmm.

Thanks smile.

agnurse Thu 05-Sep-19 22:44:15

I only have a DD, and she's 14, but I can tell you what my husband does for his mom (she's lovely).

He calls her periodically, at least once a month and often more than that, possibly as much as once a week at times. He has lengthy conversations with her. He comments on her Facebook posts.

I don't mind. She is lovely and has accepted me.

janeainsworth Thu 05-Sep-19 22:45:03

DS FaceTimes once a week. Will that do?
I’m not sure what you’re asking, OP.
I love my DS but I’m his mum not his wife.
My apron strings were untied a long time ago.

Yummysushi Thu 05-Sep-19 22:59:31

I guess my MIL thinks I’m responsible for taking her darling away from her and I’m trying to figure out why she is feeling neglected by him. Trying to work out what a normal relationship with someone’s mum sounds like.

I don’t get the “I’m his mum not his wife” comment though. I don’t see how the two relationships should clash

Grammaretto Thu 05-Sep-19 23:09:33

Now they are parents I feel my sons are closer than before to both of us.
We all adore their DC after all!
DH has always been a dutiful son too and we see his DP a couple of times a week.
We have recently been on holiday with one DS.
It is quite possible to retain a loving relationship.

GrandmaKT Thu 05-Sep-19 23:20:09

I have two married adult DS.
I think there is a tendency once they are married or in a long term relationship to leave all communications to the wife. I love both of my DILs and am quite happy to make family plans, discuss GC etc. with them. I do like it when my sons phone me for a chat though. One son does this about once a fortnight, the other less frequently, and usually for a reason, not just a chat. It would be nice if my sons bought and wrote birthday and mothers day cards themselves rather than leave it to their wives.

I don't know if you have children yourself. I look at my DIL with her 5 year old son - they absolutely adore each other (and rightly so). He says "I want to marry you mummy and never leave you". Then I remember that this is exactly what my son (her DH) used to be like with me. I think if DILs (and adult sons) thought about that for a minute they could be more forgiving of us mums.

paddyann Thu 05-Sep-19 23:36:49

I see my son most days ,he pops in on his way home from work,he msgs me with things he thinks I might be interested in or find funny .He and his partner are due their baby today,she's in labour now and I'm getting unsolicited updated hourly .
He has the same relationship with us as I had with my parenst and so does my daughter .We have always een a very close family .

Yummysushi Thu 05-Sep-19 23:40:01

Paddy were you close to your MIL?

Yummysushi Thu 05-Sep-19 23:47:21

Paddy your relationship with your son sounds like the dream.

I genuinely had high hopes when I met DH and saw how close he was to his DM. He was as you say.. updates he really on everything, sees to her daily needs. To me that was beautiful. Genuinely.

I have a son myself who is only 2 and I was willing to put my self second on many occasions to just see that woman happy.

But she never liked me. Always meddled in my marriage in a negative way.. it really saddens me with grief that I couldn’t have that relationship and ended up having to go LC.

But my DH who has relied on me for all the communication over the years is oblivious at how to do it himself.

It baffles me... she gave birth to him not me.. why can’t he figure his own mother out and make her happy without it being through me or about me?!

paddyann Thu 05-Sep-19 23:49:53

still am ,we have her to stay with us regularly ,more after she was widowed and speak to her regularly on the phone as does my husband .In fact we decorated her bedroom last christmas and she wasn't happy with the colour so we went together to choose new wallpaper for her and she was so pleased with it she was telling all her forends redecorate her house for her too while she's staying with us .Its what family does...well my family

Yummysushi Thu 05-Sep-19 23:54:43

Can I pm you paddy ?

Hithere Fri 06-Sep-19 00:23:20

You have fallen into the role of social secretary.

Your dh needs to determine how often he wants to talk to her, see her, etc, without leaving you in charge.

You have the choice to leave all the emotional load to him - do not ask him when to call, whether he called his mother, get her a bday/Xmas present, etc.

Your dh is able to hold a job and function in society- he will figure I out if he realizes nobody will do it for him

morethan2 Fri 06-Sep-19 00:35:59

I know without doubt that both my sons love me. One rings regularly and when he was much younger used to come to us for advice, less as he’s got older. He does confide in us,particularly his dad. My oldest son lives down the road and I see him three or four times a week because I look after his children. I was very close to my MiL who came to stay with us regularly. we had our little niggles and she often drove me crazy but she was treated with love and respect. I think that perhaps because my boys saw how their granny was treated they automatically treated us their own parents in the same way. My own feelings about being the mother of married sons is that you have to accept with good grace that your further down the list of priorities, so you come after the wife, the children and the hardest part to accept is after the wife’s family. It doesn’t mean your sons don't love you. They do but their priority is their own family and rightly so.

Nansnet Fri 06-Sep-19 06:02:25

I've always had a close relationship with my son, although he was never been tied to my apron strings. He always came to me for advice, and could talk to me about anything, and everything. Now he's married, I don't expect that same level of closeness, as he has his wife for that, and quite rightly so. But it is nice that he calls me/skypes once or twice a week, for a general chat, and so that I can see my little GD (they live a long way from me). Sometimes, if he needs advice about something, he still calls his mum! I do also have a good relationship with my DiL, who is lovely. Our problems have been more with DiLs mother ... but we're working on that!wink

janeainsworth Fri 06-Sep-19 06:46:55

I don’t get the “I’m his mum not his wife” comment though. I don’t see how the two relationships should clash

That’s what I meant, that the relationships shouldn’t clash. It’s a completely different relationship, with a small overlap.
I never saw myself as supplanted by DiL, and I wouldn’t dream of trying to supplant her. More that children gradually become more physically and emotionally independent of their parents as they get older.
Having said that, I try to offer support to both of them as and when needed.
The hard bits for me were not when DS got married, but when he left home in the first place and later when he went to live in America and I knew he would never come back.

BradfordLass72 Fri 06-Sep-19 07:02:30

I'm not sure if your problem is about your mil or your husband wanting to communicate with his Mum through you. smile

I can tell you many, many mothers-in-law become jealous of the close relationship their son has with his partner and begin to feel left out.

Motherrs have a long history of all their child's attention being on them.
Their sons (and daughters) have relied on Mum to provide all their needs, solve their problems and often smooth paths and be the barriers between them and trouble.

It doesn't come easy to let go. But let go they must if they are to maintain any sort of positive relationship with their adult children.

Holding on, resenting the daughter-in-law (or sil) and trying to interfere does, as you know, endless harm and can ruin any good relationship.

But how do you persuade a jealous Mum-in-law that you are not a rival, that she doesn't need to fear you, or that you'll 'take him away', that the more she claws into him and criticises, the more he'll pull back?

If you have both told her, kindly and sympathetically that you understand that it's a kind of grief but that she hasn't actually lost him (but will if she doesn't stop) then she's been given her chance. If you haven't done this, consider doing so.

I have 2 sons and the relationships between me and the boys could not be more different.

No.1 son will not speak to me because years ago his long-term girlfriend was jealous of our close relationship. He cut contact with me and his brother because that was easier than battling with her rampant jealousies.

No.2 son is entirely different.
Given a similar scenario, would have told the girlfriend he was keeping contact with me and she could like it or lump it. grin

He contacts me several times a week by sending links to TED talks or videos he thinks will be of interest (currently it's about Artificial Intelligence and 3D printing of body parts!), rings regularly for long chats, usually as he's driving to and from work as it ensures privacy, and often comes here for a whole day.

He hugs me the moment he arrives and before he leaves; he never eats a meal without some remark of appreciation and always washes up afterwards (all this happens at home too, it's how he is).

He lives across the other side of the city but would drop everything if I needed him but even when I was rushed to hospital I didn't tell him, knowing this would happen and there was nothing he could do.
Once it was all sorted out, I phoned him grin.

I could not have a more thoughtful and interesting son. He's highly intelligent, interested in a myriad things, has a responsible job at the university and I've never met anyone who doesn't like him.

Yummysushi is such a cute name - we have a little shop in a nearby town with that name, makes the best sushi ever.

Willow500 Fri 06-Sep-19 07:11:32

Although I know our two sons love us they are both adults with families of their own and live far away - one on the other side of the world. We communicate as regularly as we can and see the eldest every couple of months. He has no relationship with his MIL as his wife has been estranged from her for years. The youngest's MIL sadly has dementia so although they see her their relationship has probably changed - she's a lovely lady and I know he thinks a lot about her.

My own husband had a great relationship with my mum - we've known each other since we were 15 and as I was an only child my parents thought of him as the son they never had. They only lived round the corner in later years so we saw them a lot and cared for them during the last years of their lives - in fact it was my husband who first spotted the signs of dementia before I did. I loved my in-laws too although we lived 60 miles away husband would ring them if we hadn't seen them for a few weeks just to catch up. As we were running a business with a family time was in short supply - something we realise with our own children. It's life - we raise them and should be happy that they're independent and no longer need us.

Calendargirl Fri 06-Sep-19 07:59:20

At my daughter’s wedding, 18 years ago, I said to my son who was newly engaged, “When you get married, R. (fiancee) will be the most important person in your life”. He replied “Well, she is now!”. I felt a bit shocked, as up to then I had assumed that person was me! But straightaway realised that was absolutely how it should be.
Fast forward to now. DS has two lovely children as well as wife, obviously they are his priority, but I know DH and I are still very important to him. Am very fond of DIL, but when DS pops in on occasions on his own, it’s great to have a bit of time with him without all of them around, especially if he wants a chat about something.

Anja Fri 06-Sep-19 08:03:43

Of course my son must put his wife and family before me. That’s how it should be.

Let go OP ....your son has the right to break free. If you can do that, genuinely, you will remain in his heart, only not in poll position.

stella1949 Fri 06-Sep-19 08:17:31

My DS is lovely. He is 39, father of two, but still makes time to remind me that he loves me. At least once a week I get a really heartfelt message from him, along the lines of how much he loves and appreciates me . He sends me flowers a few times a year for no good reason . Sometimes sends me a message saying that he has booked something like theatre tickets for me and DH to see something nice. He isn't "all over me" but I do know that he loves me and that makes me feel very nice !

mcem Fri 06-Sep-19 08:34:03

My son and DiL live just half an hour away and she is currently on maternity leave. They visit about once a week and each pop in separately too.

A few years ago he got into the habit of phoning for a chat while out with the dog or when walking home from work. 2 days ago he was pushing the pram around the park while DiL was having her hair done. Yesterday we had an hour-long discussion on politics while he was cooking!
They both send pic's or videos of the baby 2/3 times a week .

I can call on him for odd jobs if I can't do them myself.

His wife is lovely and I often tell him we're lucky to have her.

janeainsworth Fri 06-Sep-19 08:38:51

Yummi is the DiL. It’s her MiL who won’t let go (I think).

Daisymae Fri 06-Sep-19 09:03:50

This battle is as old as time, lines have to be redrawn when any ac starts a new relationship. Loyalty must be with the partner and family. Having said that you can't force your husband to have a different kind of relationship with his mum. As long as you include her as you see fit I would leave it up to them to sort out the details. I wonder if your husband feels smothered by the demands of his mother and she is jealous of you? What is normal in one family would be odd in another, there's not one size fits all!

M0nica Fri 06-Sep-19 09:23:09

A good and happy relationship with a married son has nothing to do with What weekly/daily/monthly things does your DS do that make you feel like you still have a son/close friend and not that you “lived your life” and now he has only one woman in his life that he can have a meaningful relationship with.

DS does nothing whatsoever on a daily/weekly/monthly basis. Never has, he is terminally disorganised. It probably helps that I totally and completely love my DDiL. I am amazed that such a lovely woman could love my son enough to commit herself to living with him and bearing their children.

They live 200 miles away, but between email, phone calls and Facebook, which are irregular but average about once a week. we keep in contact. There is a flurry at the moment, mainly with DiL as DH is away on business, because they are having a new kitchen is installed and we have also been having a domestic crisis. Emails and photos are flying across the internet. It will slow down next week when the work is done and our life is also back to normal..

In July we all spent a fortnight on holiday together at our holiday home in France, we had a wonderful time without any rows or disagreements. We will be off to them in early October for DS's birthday.

I never realised that people did have problems with married sons until I came on Gransnet, I loved my MiL. DH was an only child and his loving care for his parents was one of those things that made him attractive. My friends all had happy relations with their husbands family.

I think it helps that I have never been a needy clingy mother. From birth I welcomed every step my children took to independence, from sitting up unaided, to no longer needing babysitters to going off to university. I was never a weepy empty nester. I had my DH, a career, lots of outside iterests and far from clinging to my children, like a good mother bird I was busy pushing them out of the nest.

GrannySomerset Fri 06-Sep-19 09:43:58

Like Monica, I married an only child who was close to his parents. Young as I was, I recognised that it would only be a competition if I made it one, so I didn’t. His cousins gave us three years because they thought I would never cope with his mother but I chose to love and appreciate her, and 57 years on am glad that I did.7

Our own children communicate frequently as and when it fits in with their very busy professional and family lives, and I appreciate that. I reckon that proves we did a good job in launching independent adults.