Gransnet forums


No contact for weeks

(91 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.

seacliff Fri 01-Jun-18 10:55:02

Myself and my siblings gradually left home, and lived quite far away in some cases. Over the years my Dad started a habit of ringing us all on a Sunday morning, just "Keeping in Touch" . That way he got a weekly update and we expected his call.

Looking back, it was lazy of us as adult children, we let him do it mostly.

Be proactive to improve things for the future. How about setting up a family whats app group? It's easy to do and great to keep a spread out family connected. We have one group with me, my siblings, all the adult children and a cousin or two. Any of us can just post a picture, or message, and they can read it when they choose. Better than a phone call if they are often busy.

You could also post on there, ask if convenient to pop round for an hour, suggest a day. Don't let this drag on any longer.

Nannan2 Fri 01-Jun-18 11:02:12

The parents dont always see it from the GRANDCHILDS point of view either- one of my older GC has come to stay a couple of times recently to spend more time with his teenager uncles(&me)- and weve had to go collect/ drop him off just to make it happen.and my youngest GC often can be heard in background if we speak on phone if they can "go see grandma" but sadly parents these days dont seem to realise their own children are missing out on the lovely relationships their own kids can have (that they had when they were young) with a grandparent while the parents prioritise other things in life!

Rocknroll5me Fri 01-Jun-18 11:07:03

Hi Veda ... Woudn't it be good if like on facebook we could 'like' or not! But its very good for getting things off your chest. THANK YOU GabriellaG flowers

Cabbie21 Fri 01-Jun-18 11:11:34

It is pretty much the same for me with my son. We get on fine when we meet but sometimes it can be a long gap. They are always busy, lots of friends, DIL’s family, GD’s little jobs. School, football, etc.
As has been said, if my son rings me I know he has got time to chat, often hands free in the car, but better than nothing. I rarely ring them as I don’t want to interrupt. Even better if he is home alone and I can pop over, but we don’t really socialise much, as they have different priorities.
We do have a family WhatsApp group which is a great idea.
I agree it is best not to leave it too long. I too get told I could pick up the phone, but we mostly text or email.

NotSpaghetti Fri 01-Jun-18 11:14:20

Like others, I think now is the time...
Give them a quick ring and ask if you could pop over with a birthday gift.
Keep it chatty and light and, fingers crossed, all will be well.
They may just think you haven’t been too bothered about seeing them...

Nannan2 Fri 01-Jun-18 11:34:27

None of us are "around forever" though and even if our grown up kids dont want to see that they really have to- maybe think how they felt when their own grans/grandads passed away? Dont they want their own children to have as many happy memories of their grandparents to fall back on to sustain them??stories for them to tell their own children??the txting & whatsapps are all well& good- but dont sound same- MY kids were able to say "remember when granma took us to (such&such a place)"??and still do- but will it seem same for my own GC to say " remember that txt we got from grandma?" when im gone??somehow i dont think so... sad

gigi1958 Fri 01-Jun-18 12:05:57

Sometimes people need space even the ones we love. If it were me I would want the silence to end ASAP. Maybe you can apologize first and say I am sorry I did not call/write or whatever I had not heard from you and thought you might need your space. That way you leave he door open for them to say they are sorry as well.
But whatever happens remember family is first even when we are irritated with them. Invite them all to dinner in or out and get back with them!

Daisyboots Fri 01-Jun-18 12:32:30

I am another one who has a problem with AC not contacting me. Mostly if I don't contact them it goes on for months. I dont ring my eldest DS as he is busy cooking for the family when he gets in from work. His wife doesn't cook and as I am not her favourite person I am very wary. Even my DS who lives in the same country never rings or messages. His attitude is if there was something wrong I or someone else would be contacting them. Life is so different today for most families compared to when they were growing up and saw their grandparents every week. I would ring and invite them round or take a birthday present to your DGS. Don't let it fester.

Stella14 Fri 01-Jun-18 12:56:47

I agree with Rocknroll5me. I have just recently had to face up to the situation with one of my daughters. She is nearly always busy when I ring her. On a good day, she will chat while only half focusing on what I’m saying. If I visit, I get my head bitten off throughout. It’s been the same for many years, including when she visits me. Interestingly, she doesn’t do it in front of my son-in-law, who is a lovely guy.

Calls and messages are virtually all insigated by me. She only contacts me when she wants something. Visits with her always leave me feeling upset and low and this will hang around me for a week or more. After my last visit, I felt very low for weeks. It’s obvious to me that I just get on her nerves. I am ‘treading on eggshells’ throughout any time with her. My husband (not her father), who has always previously been supportive, whilst never criticising my daughter, has been more outspoken this time, gently confirming what I already know. He believes that I should stop initiating contact and when she contacts me (no doubt because she wants something) just go with the flow. I have thought deeply about it and I realise that the little girl who was so close and loving, is gone. For my own peace of mind, I must stop trying to find her.

scrabble Fri 01-Jun-18 13:03:23

I would phone and say you would like to drop in with a present for your GS and see what that brings.

anitamp1 Fri 01-Jun-18 13:12:09

I agree with others. If you hadn't had contact with them for a while, then maybe it's a case of them thinking you never contact them and they feel you should make an effort. Apologies if I am wrong. But if it's as simple as that, then hopefully it's easy to remedy. Ring and maybe ask what grandson would like for his birthday or ask if you could drop round for a cuppa and say you will bring cake. Or drop round with a wee bunch of flowers for DIL. I do find it strange that she leaves you on doorstep if you call uninvited, but just go gently and hopefully all will be well.

pollyperkins Fri 01-Jun-18 13:22:29

Veda I used to the the same when I first joined GN - no-one replied to my comments and sometimes I seemed to kill the thread ie nobody else wrote anything afterwards. Now I realise people read the comments but don't necessarily answer them all. You are doing nothing wrong -keep commenting and you will get some replies sooner or later!

pollyperkins Fri 01-Jun-18 13:31:45

To reply to OP I hardly ever phone my children and though they used to phone me regularly they hardly ever do these days and I've had the 'You never phone us either comment too. I hate phoning them as they always seem to be busy but I communicate mainly via a family Whatsapp these days -before that I would text or email.and that usually meant they replied when they had a free moment.
Before every birthday I write and ask if they have any suggestions for gifts so if there's a birthday coming up it's an ideal opportunity to make contact. Don't make a big thing of it though -no need to keep asking if you've done anything wrong. Its my guess that they've just been busy and thoughtless. Good luck!

Maimeo Fri 01-Jun-18 13:38:38

Kind and thoughtful comment, Rocknroll5me

Sheilasue Fri 01-Jun-18 13:40:47

Oh dear another problem with siblings and inlaws.
Wonder why there is this situation.
Can’t understand it.

Maimeo Fri 01-Jun-18 13:42:18

Your post resonated with me, Stella14. I feel very distant from my only daughter these days. I don’t think I’m the mum she wants me to be. flowers for you

dumdum Fri 01-Jun-18 13:46:49

I also say don't let the lack of communication go on any longer, but ( nearly) everyone talks about ringing. There are other ways. I use email a fair bit, keeps the communication going yet does not intrude on anybody's lives. You can answer at Midnight if that's when you/ they have the time.
Also am on FB..I went on originally to see what the kids were doing, but it has become a lot more now, and yet another means of communication. Yes, it's not perfect, but pretty good.

lollee Fri 01-Jun-18 14:12:16

You probably didn't do anything wrong, life just goes by so quickly especially with kids and jobs and a house to run. Sometimes my younger son will forget to phone and one of us will suddenly decide to invite the other round. It is usually, 'sorry I haven't been in touch, you know what it's like, you keep meaning to and keep forgetting' and the other will say something like, 'that's ok, same here, I haven't remembered to call either, what you doing next Sunday?'
I think your initial contact was probably taken as an accusation when a lighter note might have been preferable. 'Hi, how are you all? Anyone up for a get together next weekend, yours or mine? What if I bring little Johnny's birthday present over?'

grandtanteJE65 Fri 01-Jun-18 15:02:07

AnnieOklea - do go round with a present for your grandchild - he will probably be missing you.

If your DIL opens the door ASK if you may come in for a minute and hand over the present yourself.

Then ask the whole family round to your place as others have suggested. If you can't get them to say when they will come, ring up after the birthday and suggest a time. If they dither, ask them straight out whether you have hurt or offended them in some way?

You know of nothing that you could have done or said wrong, but honestly, it is a very odd DIL who keeps her MIL standing on the doorstep. Are you a smoker and she a rabid non-smoker? I can't think of anything else that could cause her to treat you like that.

Stella14 Fri 01-Jun-18 16:39:39

Thank you Maimeo for your kind comment and the virtual flowers. I think you have hit the nail on the head with your phrase ‘not the mother she wants me to be’! I’m not sure what I’m supposed to be though ?‍♀️

Tooyoungytobeagrandma Fri 01-Jun-18 16:55:22

I've come to the cp cousin you can't win either way so I'm beginning to please myself and it's quite liberating. If my account don't want to visit so be it is can go out, sit and eat chocolate send drink wine, sleep whatever. I have given up trying to please my arse of a husband a swell so please yourself. If you want to go cod visit and possibly be upset by dil do it if you voice not to so be it. I've given up tying myself in knots to appease people who don't seem to care. If they miss me when I've gone that's their problem to deal with so live what life you have left pleasing you x

Tooyoungytobeagrandma Fri 01-Jun-18 16:56:04

Conclusion (darn fingers)blush

cornishclio Fri 01-Jun-18 17:09:33

I think usually this seems to be a problem with mothers of sons as I think men are just generally useless at keeping in touch. My MIL once tore a strip off my DH by saying she hadn't heard from him in 7 weeks even though we only lived a few miles away from her. He got better at ringing her after that and inviting her over.

I ring my mum every other week and she does the same but we have a family WhatsApp group which includes my mum, sister and brother, nephew, niece, me and DH, DD1 and DD2 and son in law. My DDs are good at keeping in touch and we see one several times a week which is why I wonder if it is sons that are the problem with communicating with parents once they leave home especially if they marry.

Annie - the comment from your son does indicate to me that you have done nothing wrong but he is maybe upset at you expecting him to instigate contact. He is presumably working full time with a family so is probably busier than you and time does go by very quickly. I am sure he has not contacted you on purpose unless you perhaps forgot your DGS birthday? We don't get invited to our DDs parties with their friends and wouldn't expect to any more than we would invite them to parties with our friends. They have their own lives to live.

Maybe message your son and ask when it is convenient to pop round with a card and present for your DGS and see what his response is.

kwest Fri 01-Jun-18 17:10:22

How can someone 'forget' to invite a child's grandparents to celebrate the child's birthday? Even if not to the main party, which would probably be noisy and the child would be busy with his/her friends, would a little birthday tea be too much to expect?

sarahellenwhitney Fri 01-Jun-18 17:47:51

My late mother blew hot and cold. If I didn't ring once a week that was wrong but was informed it must not be when ' Corrie' is on.It did not matter that I had a life and a job. How was I to know if she had a 'cold' ? I was soon to know as she would get my aunt to ring me who would say 'you don't know how ill your mother is'.