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Distant grans

(49 Posts)
Winefride Sun 29-Dec-19 17:49:22

Dear grans I know there will be someone out there handling the same so here goes . We r the grandparents 2 hours away and my lovely daughter in laws parent live 5 mins away . So when we visit once a month they r there . They physically put themselves between us and r beautiful grandchildren ie take them upstairs or to there house . Is this OK we smile and say
Not a lot . We arrange adventures and take them out for the day. We send son and dil away for night and they face time to check in with grandchildren . What is their problem. Christmas was truly lovely . But christingle grandma made Sure I Was on
the end . My lovely son said put children in middle so that was nice .
I am running out of patience here .who would invite the grandchildren for a sleep over without asking parents on Boxing Day .we only see them for a couple of days a month so they have all the rest of the month . HELP !, I’ve just read that back and what a child Isound must be the G and T but help anyway even to criticise me happy new year to all

Tedber Sun 29-Dec-19 19:21:22

Sorry Winefride I can't understand your post.

Can you break it down a bit?

You take your GC out for the day. You babysit for granchdildren to let parents out for a night out? Who objects?

Is your problem where you were seated at a family meal? Or the fact they Facetime you when you have the grandchildren? (in which case just turn it off - I never Facetime or answer lol)

Where does Boxing Day sleepover come into it? Did you offer and the in-laws take them regardless?

I must admit I have absolutely NO time for Grannies wars over grandchildren. But..I can't understand what the main gripe is here tbh? Perhaps you could explain more?

Grammaretto Sun 29-Dec-19 19:35:03

I fear you are on a losing wicket here. The other GP are determinrd to be #1.
Their DD is the mum and they live nearby so want to stake their claim in the grannywars.
I would just be happy with whatever you are allowed. My DGC once called the other set their real GP.
We laughed it off but it was true. They see far more of them. I once told my co granny how lucky they were but she said "we get them when they're sick because we are the first port of call when nursery won't take them"
We still have a good relationship with them now they are growing up but don't see them often.
Another DGC is 12k miles away.

Urmstongran Sun 29-Dec-19 19:58:37

We are the only grandparents. Our 2 gorgeous grandchildren are the children of our youngest daughter.

I think the nearby grandparents should back off a bit and learn to make a lot more room for you two. I think they’re being selfish. The BD sleepover was unnecessary - unless they thought their daughter looked tired with hosting Christmas for you and wanted her to have the chance of a lie in? Who knows.

Our grandchildren have lots of cousins, aunties and uncles from son in law’s side of the family. If we are round (we live close by and see them a lot when we are home from Spain) we are friendly and interested in them and their doings then we say ‘cheerio everyone’ to give them the chance to have more cuddles and time with the smalls.

It isn’t a competition. The more people that love those two poppets the better I say!

endlessstrife Mon 30-Dec-19 09:30:17

It’s always going to be different for the parents of the son, unless the daughter has a problem family. I have two sons, and two daughters. The difference is there, even though we get on well. There’s always a line over which I can’t cross with my DIL’s. My daughters expect me to say what I think. Don’t’ fight’ these people, just be gracious. Your GC will soon work out who are the winners in the GP war. Children are more astute than we give them credit for.

wildswan16 Mon 30-Dec-19 10:02:12

You are cross with two adults who love their grandchildren just like you do. They are, apparently, a bit selfish in not realising that they should perhaps step back a little bit when you are visiting because you don't see them so much as they do.

I don't think you are going to change them, so just go with the flow. Enjoy the times you are with the children, don't get tied up in resentment. Children are really clever little things who know who loves them - whether they are there for five minutes or five hours.

harrigran Mon 30-Dec-19 10:21:32

Our DIL's parents live a five hour drive away and are unable to travel frequently. When they arrive for visits we absent ourselves to allow them time to enjoy the GC.
We do not live on their doorstep, a 45 minute drive to be precise, so we get school pick ups and emergency childcare coverage.
It is not a competition to see which GPs love the GC the most.

Laurensnan Mon 30-Dec-19 10:36:29

Same here harrigran, I am the gran down the road from my daughter and GC. Their other gran lives abroad. I see my GC nearly every day. When their other gran comes over to stay for 2 weeks I stay out of their lives apart from inviting other gran and them for a meal as a welcome to her. The grans that spend the most time with the grandchildren should stand back when the other set arrive. It's only fair. Plus the GC need to benefit from quality time with the grandparents they don't see often. I'm very blessed to see my GC nearly every day and I feel for the other gran, my GC need to make the most of their time with her. With my son's little boy I see him 2 or 3 times a month but so does the other gran. So I'm pretty equal with time spent with them.

grandtanteJE65 Mon 30-Dec-19 10:37:23

Can you try to arrange that you visit when the other grandparents are not there? Or arrange that your grandchildren and their parents come to your place?

Make it clear nicely, that you would like time with the family without the other grandparents by inviting your grandchildren alone or with their parents.

Beanie654321 Mon 30-Dec-19 10:42:58

Stop gripping make the most of seeing GC, slot of GP dont see them. I see all mine and must admit I treasure every minute, the in laws see them too and we dont compete as it's wrong. I respect what they do even if I dont agree. Life is for living and not competing.

Gingergirl Mon 30-Dec-19 10:52:33

Yes, I have been in a similar situation. Its not you that has the problem as such but your reaction to it can be modified. As someone else said, be gracious. Don’t measure your impact on your gc by how often or how long you see them. You will be special to them regardless. And as they grow up, no one at all will be able to physically move them, coerce them, or persuade them to do anything at all! I know how hurtful this is but perhaps just try your best to have as much time as you can with them when the other gps aren’t around (mention that you’d like to arrange this, as you don’t see them a lot) and leave it at that. There will be many more good times...don’t fight over the children. They sense it.

pinkquartz Mon 30-Dec-19 11:23:07

I think the other grandparents should be taught to share!

Seriously, we teach children to share, and the other GP's are always going to see the DGC the most because they are physically close but there is no need to be so possessive.

I would hope you can have a calm chat with your DS and DiL and ask if you can book some time alone with DGC....once a month or every other but a time when it is you and not the other GP's.

I understand your pain and also in the end children feel connected to some people more than may be that after a time your connections to the DGC will be stronger as they grow.

There is no good reason for the other GP to totally dominate and the Boxing Day sleepover sounds very territorial. And would hurt you.
How old are the DGCs?

TrendyNannie6 Mon 30-Dec-19 11:26:28

This happens all the time , I have it with my some of my grandchildren the other grandparents completely take over, I just accept it, I’m certainly not going to argue over grandchildren,

Minerva Mon 30-Dec-19 11:29:59

If I was visiting my son and daughter in law and the other Grandma said to the children, let’s play upstairs, I would follow. If she objected I would remind her that she will still be there when you have gone home and that Granddad is still downstairs.
Other Grandma (lovely lady) lives much further away in our case and I keep out of their way when she comes to stay unless specifically invited. They all came to me at Christmas and I saw no favouritism from the children towards Granny or Grandma.

sluttygran Mon 30-Dec-19 11:44:31

I live almost next door to my daughter, so come in for plenty of childcare and fun, for which I'm more than grateful.
When other Gran visits ( a five hour journey) I always have a cuppa and a catch up with her, then I keep out of the way. Shes a lovely person and a great friend, and we both adore our DGC.
There's heaps of love to go round, and plenty to spare

Rocknroll5me Mon 30-Dec-19 11:56:06

Winifred we get the gist. You feel marginalized, not as important as you feel you should be, it’s not fair, we all feel like that sometimes. You can get it off your chest. Life isn’t fair. But one thing that never changes is that things keep changing. So keep your powder dry. Do your very best deep breath and good luck smile

Hithere Mon 30-Dec-19 11:57:46

How was your relationship with dil and son before they had kids? How often would you visit and would they visit you?

How stressful for son, dil and their kids. Especially the kids. The parents need to put some order into this grandparent competition train wreck.

4 adults fighting for winning the grandparent war.

This is not sustainable. How old are the kids?

Please don't play the game of "fairsies" - comparing yourself to the other grandparents. Life is not fair, it is a fact we teach kids since they are young and it doesn't change when you become a grandparent

You get to see them once a month, which is a lot and very generous of your son and dil.

Sending son and dil away for the night so you had a sleepover - whose idea was it? Your son's and dil's or yours?

Are you asking "what's their problem" to parents wanting to FaceTime to check on their kids? Your post is confusing and hard to understand.

GrannyBlossom Mon 30-Dec-19 12:07:37

I can really see your point. I wonder if they have any idea about how you feel. Could you talk to them about this?

NannyG123 Mon 30-Dec-19 12:11:45

We live 3 a couple of hours away from out teenage grandson. His other grandparents live 5 mins from him, so we understand they see and do more with him. We just make sure the time we do spend with him is fun, and try and go out different places.

NotSpaghetti Mon 30-Dec-19 12:18:30

You can't change the other grandparents (though I do think taking the grandchildren away to their house during a visit is very odd) so you need to relax about it or you will become angry and cross. Feeling bitter and slighted is only going to hurt you so in the interests of self-preservation I think you should try really hard to focus on all the positives.
If you do this you will let go of the resentment and be able to smile. I'm the "second grandmother" for two of my grandchildren. I love it when I have time with them but I'm not 1st port of call. I am used to this and accept that as the children grow they will no doubt appreciate my different grandmother skills/style/interests more. As others have said, enjoy what you have. Many grandparents have much much less.

Jishere Mon 30-Dec-19 12:39:36

You don't say how old your grandchildren Are? How about arranging a wèekend stay at yours?
I think this is how it is going to be unless you tell your son you feel you have no priority uninterrupted time with them.

Fiachna50 Mon 30-Dec-19 12:49:08

What matters is the relationship YOU have with your grandchild or grandchildren. Leave the other grandparents to get on with it. If you do encounter the other grandparents be pleasant, it costs nothing. The important ones are the children.

Sb74 Mon 30-Dec-19 12:55:08

I think the post made complete sense?? It’s a shame you son and dil can’t see how it is and stop it. Could you talk to your son and give an example of sleepover on Boxing Day?

How are the other grandparents FaceTiming the kids when they are with you? Do the kids have their own devices as I thought they sounded quite young still? Just ignore the FaceTime from others Gp and say you didn’t see it. They’ll soon get the message if you keep ignoring the other gp interruptions. It sounds like they’re are trying to make a claim on the kids as second parents or something. I think you just need to tell your son but it won’t be easy as men are not great at dealing with these things from my experience. Good luck op.

Esmerelda Mon 30-Dec-19 13:03:04

Your post seems quite clear to me, Winefride so not sure why a couple of people have found it difficult or have got hold of the wrong end of the stick. Obviously the other GPs decided to take the children to theirs for a sleep over on Boxing Day whilst you were there. I do think that was beyond the pale ... why couldn't they wait until you'd left if they wanted to give mum and dad a break. Have you spoken (calmly) to your son and d-i-l about this, saying how puzzled you are at what happened? I think the suggestion from others to request time alone with the children and their parents, without the other set of GPs, is a good one but please don't get yourself in a state about the situation. Be kind and pleasant at all times ... you will be the winners then.

Sb74 Mon 30-Dec-19 13:08:04

I also think it’s quite mean of other grandparents to knowingly hog the grandkids overnight on Boxing Day. They know what they’re doing and don’t sound very nice.