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In need of advice about DIL

(105 Posts)
AgathaRay Fri 10-Apr-20 19:49:19

Hello everyone, a friend recommended me to this page. I would appreciate some advice to this issue.

My lovely son had been with DIL for seven years, married for three. They have a beautiful little 2 year old girl that I adore, although I’ve never been allowed the amount of care that I’m used to with my other son’s children.

About a year after they had GD, DIL had a miscarriage. It was during the Christmas season and she was reasonably upset. I did my best to sympathize, without it effecting the rest of the family’s festivities, of course.

The following May they had another loss. We had popped in for a surprise weekend visit over Mother’s Day (we live a few hours drive from them) and DIL did not seem pleased. The visit further soured when my son told us she was experiencing yet another pregnancy loss. She spent all weekend shut away in her room while we played with GD in the main room. She didn’t come to Mother’s Day lunch and asked not to be given a gift, and didn’t even say goodbye when we left.

After that weekend DIL distanced from me and DH. She removed me from social media and wouldn’t chat with us on the phone when we called my son. It was obvious she was losing it. When I recommended that she go visit a physician for her mental health, she threw a fit. I was no longer allowed contact with her at all, or my lovely GD. This was last May.

We saw DIL, my son and GD at Christmas with family, but she didn’t speak to me nor even look in my direction. We heard through the grapevine that she had another loss in September, and I was outraged I wasn’t told by her or my son. For goodness sake, these are my grandchildren she’s losing.

Anyway, come to find out she’s pregnant again and due in September. This one seems to be progressing fine as she’s well into the trimester. I’m hurt that my son waited so long to tell me, and they didn’t let us know what has changed to cause this pregnancy to thrive where the others hadn’t. Life changes? Medication? IVF? I believe we have a right to know.

But my biggest issue is that she hasn’t warmed back up to us yet. Yes, we still have occasional contact with my son and see GD over FaceTime, but she still doesn’t include me in pregnancy news and hasn’t invited us round or to stay for the weekend in nearly a year. When should I expect her to be over this? She has her baby, shouldn’t she be getting over this?

Starblaze Fri 10-Apr-20 21:14:55

Listen to the advice you have been given above, get yourself some help for your feelings, I'm afraid they are completely unreasonable and not justified at all. Get help or you are going to lose that relationionship completely.

SalsaQueen Fri 10-Apr-20 21:17:00

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SueDonim Fri 10-Apr-20 21:18:49

I’d be pretty horrified if anyone popped in for a surprise weekend visit to me at any time, let alone when miscarrying. It’s too late now but surely asking your son what suited him & his wife would have been the best idea ie is it better to stay or leave?

I also think your proprietorial attitude towards your son and family says a lot. I am astounded that you could write this I’m hurt that my son waited so long to tell me, and they didn’t let us know what has changed to cause this pregnancy to thrive where the others hadn’t. Life changes? Medication? IVF? I believe we have a right to know.

What right do you have to know why this pregnancy seems to be progressing better than the previous ones? It’s absolutely none of your business. I sincerely hope fences can be mended but I fear that will not happen until you examine your attitude.

Newmom101 Fri 10-Apr-20 21:26:28

I think the other pp’s have covered how insensitive you seem and have been towards her.

I just want to add that you also seem incredibly self-centred and if you were my MIL I wouldn’t be wanting any contact with you at all (not a MIL hater by the way, I get on brilliantly with mine). So just to point out a few things

1. You complain that you don’t get ‘the same amount of care’ with her DD compared to your other sons child. You are not entitled or owed time alone (I presume that’s what you mean by care?) with anyone else’s child, be they your grandchild or not.

2. I was outraged I wasn’t told by her or my son. For goodness sake, these are my grandchildren she’s losing This made me so angry on her behalf. ‘Your’ grandchildren are HER children, that she is physically losing. Multiple times. Its not about you. It’s about her and your son.

3. Annoyed because you haven’t been told why this pregnancy is successful? Get a grip woman. For a start, she doesn’t have to tell you her medical information, how can you think you’re entitled to that? And just be bloody glad that it is.

Overall, take a long hard look at your attitude. You come across as entitled and believing that this situation is about you. Also, how anyone can not understand that a miscarriage at any stage can be traumatic is seriously lacking in empathy. Also, after she told you did you spend the day making a fuss over your other sons girlfriend? Even if she didn’t want to tell everyone she probably expected you to at least be understanding.

Also ‘she has her baby, shouldn’t she be getting over this?’ You seem so cruel OP.

M0nica Fri 10-Apr-20 21:27:16

I give up, you make a rhinosceros look thin skinned.

notanan2 Fri 10-Apr-20 21:28:13

Christ! Being sad about pregnancy loss is not a mental disorder that needs fixing by a physician, its a normal reaction!

As for the rest, I dont know where to start. Do you normally struggle to read social situations?

You are the emotional equivalent of a bull in a china shop.

Newmom101 Fri 10-Apr-20 21:29:16

Oops, so many ‘also’s’, I just couldn’t get my head around this post at all. How can anyone in this situation not see what they’re doing wrong? confused

AgathaRay Fri 10-Apr-20 21:30:47

I did not mean to cause anyone here to be upset. I’m an awful, cruel person. Noted. I apologize to anyone I have offended.

SueDonim Fri 10-Apr-20 21:37:36

I’m not offended, AgathaRay. I’m just shocked that you can’t see where you’ve gone wrong.

Honestly, take some time away from here to quietly read through the responses, bit by bit, and ask yourself whether there isn’t an iota of truth in what people here are saying. Personally, I think people often deserve a second chance and it would be so sad if you threw that chance away.

AgathaRay Fri 10-Apr-20 21:43:21

I can see that I didn’t understand just how awful what she has experienced is.

I can see that I shouldn’t have took her word for not making a fuss on Christmas.

I can see that I should have left their home in May after we figured out was going on. (And apparently popping in ever is rude?)

And I suppose that wanting to be in the know about her medical interventions may not be realistic.

What I can’t see is what to do from here, what to do or say to fix things between DIL and I to regain regular contact with GD and our future GC.

Ironflower Fri 10-Apr-20 21:47:15

First trimester losses are very traumatic. Trigger warning here. I lost a baby on Mothers day at 6 weeks. You find out your pregnant and so so happy. Then you start bleeding. You start crying. You clutch your stomach and beg the baby to stay inside. The pain is awful, worse than afterbirth. You keep hoping that baby might be okay until baby is suddenly gone. You feel like a failure. I was at my parents when I started bleeding. I went straight to hospital and then home and cried. If my in-laws had of shown up trying to 'distract me' or prioritising their own celebrations I would have been furious. I have an amazing relationship with my in-laws because they didn't do things like this.

Man a MC around christmas would have also been devastating but you still wanted to make sure your festivities went ahead.

You sound so insensitive, almost psychotic. I don't think you meant to sound like that, it can hard to convey emotions in text, but this is why people don't believe you. What you took out of all their losses and final pregnancy was rage that you hadn't been informed sooner :O

You hurt her so badly when she was at her most vulnerable. She was at her lowest and you pushed her down further. Take a massive step back. You messed up big time. If I were you, I would send flowers and a message, saying that you messed up big time and hurt her beyond repair. Let them know that if they can ever heal enough to talk to you again that you'll be there but until then you'll give them all the space they need as they heal and move forward. Don't talk about meeting up or future plans, they may never forgive you (I don't think I would). Let them come to you.

Ironflower Fri 10-Apr-20 21:51:07

Also about the differences in how much time you spend with GC. Some parents have different ideas about how often grandparents see kids. Its normal and natural. The parents may be busy, they may have other engagements. This happens in healthy relationships too. Just make sure not to complain about how much time you get, or treat grandchildren differently (favour the kids you see more), otherwise they will slowly enjoy seeing you less

Ironflower Fri 10-Apr-20 21:57:11

What I can’t see is what to do from here, what to do or say to fix things between DIL and I to regain regular contact with GD and our future GC.

To fix things, firstly look at your statement here. You want to fix things with your DIL to regain regular contact with GC. This is wrong, it shouldn't just be about the GC. It should be about having a good relationship with the parents because you care about them, then a good relationship with GC will (usually) come naturally. Fix things with your DIL for the sake of your DIL, not for what you gain from it

Ironflower Fri 10-Apr-20 21:58:28

As many DILs say, we are not just incubators for you to get grandchildren. WANT to have a good relationship with us

Babyshark Fri 10-Apr-20 21:58:35

This is so awful I am desperate to believe it’s not real. If it is real op leave your dil the hell alone until you can develop some damn self awareness.

Honestly gobsmacked.

Starblaze Fri 10-Apr-20 21:58:41

AgathaRay if you want to fix this you need to apologise. This apology needs to contain NO ifs or buts. It needs to be "I am so deeply sorry for all the pain and upset I have caused" and it needs to be genuine. Before you even attempt it you need to feel it in your bones. You also need to be honest with the people around you. You need to say that you got far too emotionally involved in your son and dils relationship and you need to understand 100% that is the truth. You also need to seek some help to understand and process where these feelings are coming from. They are coming from somewhere and fixing it may just give you a lot of future happiness as well as those around you. You absolutely cannot bypass or rush any of these steps. You have some serious issues and it's time to get better.

AgathaRay Fri 10-Apr-20 22:00:26

I am so sorry for your loss and pain, ironflower. That’s truly sounds like a horrifying experience, and I appreciate you being so open and honest about it.

I believe that in the effort to keep my post concise I left out many details and emotion that would have shown my issue in a better light.

Regardless, I can’t help but feel upset that I can’t see my GD. I’m also terrified that I will never get a significant relationship with this new babe because of my mistakes.

Babyshark Fri 10-Apr-20 22:05:05

I would go as far as to say until this poster has some professional help, any advice we give her could be used purely for her own means. Sometimes giving the wrong people the key to get what they want (contact with her gd) could be dangerous to her son and dil.

Tell a professional what you have told us. I refuse to help a potential narcissist get an in with the people who have what they want. I don’t think your motives are pure from your op.

crazyH Fri 10-Apr-20 22:08:49

AgathaRay, I don't pop into my sons' houses, never, not even for a quick 'hello'. My visits are always pre-arranged. All my 3 children live near me, a 10 minute drive from each. Occasionally, very occasionally, I drop in to my daughter's house, because she is divorced.
You are probably going about it the wrong way. Just back off a bit. You mean well I'm sure, but you must go easy. The more you expect, the more you will be disappointed.
Good luck !

Starblaze Fri 10-Apr-20 22:11:05

The only RIGHT way to see grandchildren is to have a good relationship with their parents. Period.

SueDonim Fri 10-Apr-20 22:14:26

Listen to the people here, Agatha, as to how to fix this. As it has been going on for some time, there’s no need to rush into anything. Listen and learn and concentrate on regaining your son and dil’s confidence. If you can do that, seeing your GD will follow naturally, and remember at all times, she is their child, not yours. You’ve had your time as a mother, now it’s time to move on to a new role, which is different from that of a mother but can be just as rewarding.

Ironflower Fri 10-Apr-20 22:26:53

You can't rush this at all. You can't make them forgive you. Send a sincere apology for all the hurt you've caused (not 'sorry for whatever I did'). Let them know that you'll give them space and hope that they can ever forgive you enough to talk to you. They may decide to avoid you during the pregnancy to avoid stress, that is reasonable of them, albeit disappointing for you but mum and baby are 100% the priority

Luckygirl Fri 10-Apr-20 22:39:10

We had popped in for a surprise weekend visit - this has to be a wind-up!

FoghornLeghorn Fri 10-Apr-20 22:48:10

I think the ‘surprise’ visit was because she’d been told that DIL didn’t want to celebrate Mothers Day so by not saying they were coming there was no danger of being told not to. Highly manipulative. ☹️

Loulelady Fri 10-Apr-20 22:58:39

“Popped in” my arse! You know that’s bollocks. You live several hours drive away, that’s not popping in.
Popping in is knocking when passing locally, usually on foot, for a quick hello and probably a cup of tea if the person you surprised isn’t busy or on their way out.
I suspect you didn’t like the idea of being excluded from Mothers Day and decided to take matters into your own hands. To then stay and make your DIL hide in her room to escape you and consequently not see her own daughter on Mother’s Day is just awful.
Oh and your lovely son? He’s a spineless fucker. He should have told you it wasn’t a good time or a good idea, made you a hot drink and sent you on your way.
I doubt she will ever “get over it”. If you were my MIL I’d loathe you by now and it couldn’t be undone.