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No contact for weeks

(90 Posts)
AnnieOaklea Thu 31-May-18 09:33:49

I'm widowed and live about ten minutes from my Son and his family. His wife can be "difficult" but we get along. However for the last two months I've not seen or heard from any of them. I can't think of anything I've done wrong. I've messaged my son and said I hadn't heard from them and asked if everything was alright. His reply was "well, we haven't heard from you either". They have had Bank Holiday BBQs with friends, (seen on Facebook) and my little grandsons birthday party is weekend, I've not been invited to any of these events which is highly unusual. I'm terribly hurt and just wish they would tell me what I've done to upset them.
I'm reluctant to go round and ask as my DinL always keeps me on the doorstep, so I never go uninvited any more.

Grammaretto Thu 31-May-18 09:43:49

It must be hard. I think you just have to break the silence and ask them over. Swallow your pride, forget dil's strange behaviour. It's just her way and as you say you get on ok.
The longer you leave it, the worse it will get.
You are the grown up!!

Bridgeit Thu 31-May-18 09:45:23

Well 2 months is a long time, as it's going to be your Grandsons Birthday you have a good opportunity to pop around with a present. If you are not invited in, you will have a chance to ask if you have offended them in some way . Good luck

Belgravian Thu 31-May-18 09:59:44

I would imagine that they lives with a young family mean that they are more busy than yourself and the communication on both sides has fallen by site recently .

I expect they may have felt you had the hump about something and hadn't contacted them! Meanwhile you were worried they weren't contacting you because you'd said or done something wrong! In today's busy world it's easy for this kind of misunderstanding to happen.

I also think that it's usually the women who make the arrangements regarding activities for children and the family and you may have been left out not in a nasty way but simply because your daughter in law isn't that close to you.

I would do as the previous poster said and invite them round for tea and catch up from there.

sodapop Thu 31-May-18 10:36:21

The longer you leave it the more difficult a rapprochement will be. As others have said, invite them round for a drink or go to their house with a gift for your grandson. Don't look for problems when there may be none there. Good luck.

HAZBEEN Thu 31-May-18 10:42:59

I think your son may have had a point in saying well we havent heard from you, sorry if that upsets you. My family all live at the other end of the country and if I dont phone them I wouldnt hear from any of them except my daughter for months at a time. I tried waiting to see if they would phone me but when I gave in and rang they would say "hello stranger"! They have often complained that I dont contact them but when I say well you could ring me all I get is a shrug and "we were busy". Keeping in touch works both ways, so give them a ring or pop round. If they say how long it was since you called just say well I was busy and time gets away from you. Maybe your DiL leaves to your son to keep in touch with you and we all know how bad (most) men are at that!

Eglantine21 Thu 31-May-18 13:14:52

My father in law never rings anyone, not me,not his grandchildren. He always expects us to ring him.

Maybe he has a point when he says you didn’t ring him either?

BlueBelle Thu 31-May-18 13:29:56

I too think this has been a misunderstanding I m usually the one doing the ringing I find it a bit strange that you have waited two months to contact them if I didn’t hear from my kids even the ones overseas in a week I d be on the phone to see if they were ok Id definitely swallow your pride and invite them round as soon as
Of course you shouldn’t be expected to be invited to friends BBQs they are living their own lives, but shouldn’t you have rung to see what your grandson wanted for his birthday or ask if you are going to see him I am puzzled by your long silence then feeling upset at them
Hope t turns out ok

harrigran Thu 31-May-18 15:02:17

I don't hear from DD for weeks, she will ring on mothering Sunday and on my birthday but in between visits to the UK I don't hear from her. If I want to know where she is in the world I look on FB. We have a good relationship we just don't live in each other's pockets.

Bluegal Thu 31-May-18 21:22:56

Strange? Yes. But if there is no reason for them acting as they do and leaving you on doorstep is odd! All you can do is get on with your own life and tell them you will be there if they need you.

I can’t begin to guess why they are being like this! Only hint is he said you hadn’t been in touch either? My mum is a great one for not contacting and expecting everyone else to contact her. Not saying this is the case here but just wondering?

focused1 Fri 01-Jun-18 09:58:01

Would actually give them a ring . I always ask my son what our grandchildren need / want . I don't want to outdo their gifts or duplicate . Use this as an excuse . Maybe bring chocs or flowers round too . Just because they are slightly distant - this is easily resolved as the ideal opportunity has arisen.

Liz46 Fri 01-Jun-18 10:00:34

I tend to not contact my daughter as she is so busy with a demanding job and two small children. She phones me when she fancies a chat or needs some babysitting. If I phone her, she is always rushing somewhere and I can't understand what she is saying as she is trying to do chores at the same time as talk to me! I do agree with some of the other comments and maybe you should just phone and ask what you should buy your grandson for his birthday.

Jaycee5 Fri 01-Jun-18 10:01:56

Two months is a long time if you are on your own and waiting and wondering. It is a very short time if you work full time, have young children and an active social life and it can easily pass.
Your son is not wrong. Phones work in two directions. Is there any reason you didn't just give them a ring. If they just overlooked it and your first comment was a bit of a rebuke, you can understand a prickly response.
I think you should ring and apologise if there was a misunderstanding but say that you would like to get together or invite them round or whatever fits how you normally interact.
At the moment this is a molehill but it has a great potential to be a mountain.

Penygirl Fri 01-Jun-18 10:02:45

My mum has been widowed two years and she is inclined to say “You’re the first person I have spoken to for days” in a reproachful way. I have told her over and over again that SHE could actually pick up the phone to ring someone! Communication has to be a two way thing.

sarahellenwhitney Fri 01-Jun-18 10:06:41

It may be something quite trivial has been said or done that you wouldn't give a second thought to. I agree with others give them a ring ask what GC's want or need and when would it be convenient for you to bring round.

Jayelld Fri 01-Jun-18 10:08:43

My sister gad a minor misunderstanding with her grown up son and they didn't talk for 3 months. However, as soon as she heard his wife was unwell she sent him a text, and they are beginning to talk again and heal the rift.
Sometimes we as adults/parents have to put away our pride and phone them first.
My daughter and I are in contact 2 or 3 times a week, more if a planned event is happening. However, if we have an arguement, nearly always caused by my daughters high stress levels, she is the one who phones first.

Grandma70s Fri 01-Jun-18 10:08:48

I’m the same as Liz46. I have one son with a demanding job, wife also with a demanding job, two small children. Their life is one long rush and if I ring it’s usually at an inconvenient moment - because there are virtually no convenient moments. He rings me occasionally, otherwise we text, which is convenient and unobtrusive.

My other son is single with no children. He rings frequently.

Coconut Fri 01-Jun-18 10:12:27

The longer you leave it the harder it will be to rebuild bridges. I am lucky to see my daughter and family daily as we live next door. My 2 sons who live an hour away, I speak to them, their wives and my GC every week, and am invited over regularly, not just to babysit, but also for weekend breaks. It’s finding a dividing line between giving them space to live their lives, but being in the background to help/visit. Good luck

goose1964 Fri 01-Jun-18 10:13:33

I'm awful at phoning people, my dad always phones me. I tend to speak to my sister only when necessary. I would email or go somewhere in person rather than phone.

I keep in contact with my children over facebook.

I hate phones

Rocknroll5me Fri 01-Jun-18 10:25:18

I know this one from many sides.
And first of all may I deeply sympathise with OP.
I am amazed at how many people blithely say just phone two way thing and all that, I think fear of rejection can stop that and being made to feel unwanted is hard at any age. Pride comes into it and a feeling that you don’t want to be the person that they don’t wish to speak to. It used to happen to my mum and she would complain and then my bother would say she never rang them. But that really wasn’t the truth. She wasn’t stupid. She knew he would only talk to her if wife was not in and when he rang her it meant he felt like talking. She’d have loved to have felt powerful enough to ring him anytime let alone her daughter in law. And now I have a similar thing with son. DIL will never speak but I do message her and she sometimes responds. If I ring my son he is either in a shop at a meeting having a conference call or putting the children to bed or cooking supper or the phone is off. When he rings me he wants to talk about something. So you can see how the behaviour starts. I wish I could be tougher skinned. I think too when you have a partner it is much easier to bear. In fact before either my mum or I were widowed it didn’t happen. It’s crap but I think it’s pretty common. I don’t think there is a magic answer. Today I am sending my granddaughters a little book and a card about the summer. Because I know how much children do remember kindnesses and we don’t always have to ask. Big hug and good luck. Do everything you can and know that you’ve done your best. And start spreading your care wider perhaps. You can’t make people do anything they have to want to and you are not in the most powerful position in your life.

BarbaraOsborne60 Fri 01-Jun-18 10:31:35

The rift between myself & son has gone on for years. I haven’t seen my GD since she was 3 months old, she has just had her 7th birthday.
We have had several go’s at putting it aside using supposed baby steps but still no reconciliation.

GabriellaG Fri 01-Jun-18 10:36:21

I enjoyed reading your insightful comment. smile

knickas63 Fri 01-Jun-18 10:44:14

My MIL frequently moans at us for not contacting her. We all work full time and have very little time free. We often tell her she can phone us as well! She has sometimes been forgotten regarding Birthday parties - and that is not intentional, we all speak via Messenger, which she is not on, so we have to make a conscious decision to remember Grandma, and we are mortified if we forget. I do suggest you contact your DS and ask if you are allowed to come to DGS birthday. I am sure it is an oversite and you will be welcome.

Veda Fri 01-Jun-18 10:49:35

So sorry to read this. I completely relate to it Annie. I would write more but I don’t understand how this site works. I’ve written messages before but I never get any feedback. Maybe aim doing something wrong.

Nannan2 Fri 01-Jun-18 10:50:27

Well yes- but they are also 'grown ups' gramarreto! This happened recently though with me and my eldest sons family- normally i hear from them frequent enough(but sometimes only if he needs to borrow anything) but id not heard from him in about 6wks-( i am busy as well as i still have his younger teenage brothers at home)and they&myself have a lot of appts for medical& stuff- but it got to point where id to ask his elder sister(who theyd even met for day out not too far away-older ones except her live in next county)to get him to ring me as i thought id offended him! In fact i actually did txt & ask him that.eventually he rang& said he 'had a lot on'- but i can fully understand how OP feels as you do feel as though your left out& done wrong to them even if you know youve not! (My sons one who tells everyone in family "ill ring you later" but never does!)Often i do try ring my older 'children' but it goes to the answerphones- a peril of 21st century! Which is fine, but if no one ever gets back to messages left whats point in having it! Yes,i would ring to invite them round if i were you-to pick up birthday present maybe? if they dont come id go round with it and say "well i didnt want him to miss his present but thought id get an invite by now;i wont stop long"( while edging past DIL on doorstep)once your GC spots you&present and their eyes light up itl be bad manners of your DIL to make/ask you to leave.maybe then you can sort out any misunderstanding?my DIL can sometimes be 'changable' i have to play it by ear.The grown up kids cant always just assume that theyre the only ones 'busy' either! This lady might still be working full/part time or have appts/ commitments to fulfill- we're not all old age pensioners just cause we're grans you know- im only in mid-50's! When my son says" weve been busy", i reply "so have i"- see,it DOES work 2 ways!