Gransnet forums


3 bereavements .....

(35 Posts)
Nicola1960 Sun 24-Sep-23 23:15:33

I am new so bear with me.

My husband died in March after a battle with Alzheimer's. Only 61

My son has no contact and I don't see my granddaughter and I have a baby grandson who I don't know.

Everything was fine he married we accepted her into the family. They moved up from Swindon to Shropshire supposedly to be near my husband and me. She got

The hump because I asked if I minded exchanging a present. She never came to see her ill father in law. Offered know support at all. Now i have lost my son who incidentally didnt ride in the family car to funeral and didn't turn up at wake. Left me and my daughter to do it all. I am broken. When I tried to reach out 12 months before he died she said " you have made me feel rejected as a daughter inlaw " "you've made Richard cry" told him he needed to come and see his dad who was so ill" and finally she said" out of a whole week I can't find a hour to visit my granddaughter. This was in the midst of a family going through so much turmoil. Incidentally the present I asked to exchange was wine tasting experience. My sons birthday she had the nerve to take him wine tasting and asked my daughter to babysit when we were spending all day at hospital.

March Mon 25-Sep-23 06:45:50

She does sound really unkind in how you've described her but she's not the problem here, your son is.

DiamondLily Mon 25-Sep-23 10:04:34

I lost my DH in April, and do understand that family fall-outs just add to the pain.

I'm "fortunate" that the only ones who treated me badly were my Stepchildren and my brother - well good riddance to both of them.🙄

But, it's obviously different with a son and GC.

Your DIL sounds like a stroppy little madam, but, your son is the one really at fault here.

There is absolutely nothing to stop him visiting you, with your GCs. Your DIL doesn't have to visit.

If he cannot/doesn't stand up to her, then I'm not sure there's too much you can do.

I really wish people would understand spousal bereavement - it's horrendous, and it costs people very little to give support.🙁

If possible, I'd enjoy the relationship you have with your daughter, grieve for your husband, and gradually try to rebuild your life - with or without your son and GC in it.

Condolences on your loss x💐

dogsmother Mon 25-Sep-23 10:15:07

Please don’t get caught up in an issue that could resolve. Your son is probably still very led by his wife who is probably still probably still very post natal.
Try to do as diamond says and just enjoy dd relationship and hope for son’s realisation that his mum needs him too.

crazyH Mon 25-Sep-23 10:33:14

So sorry for your loss flowers- 61 is really so young -
Re your d.I.l. - tbh, you shouldn’t have asked her whether you could exchange her present. If you didn’t like the present you could have kept it for a few months and then taken it to the charity shop. I hope I’ve got the story right ..

Urmstongran Mon 25-Sep-23 10:41:15

No she couldn’t crazyH it was an ‘experience’ present so at some stage she would’ve been asked if she’d enjoyed it/used it yet?

Smileless2012 Mon 25-Sep-23 10:47:07

Welcome to GN Nicola.

My sincere condolences for the loss of your husband who you are grieving for, a terrible experience without everything else you're going through.

Try and concentrate on the relationships you have with those who love and care for you. This is I'm sorry to say your son's responsibility. If his wife doesn't want contact with you, that's no reason for him to have none with you either and to prevent you from seeing your GC.

Sadly as DiamondLily has posted, unless he's prepared to see you despite any objections from his wife, there's nothing you can do.

It will take time for you to rebuild your life and it may mean doing so without your son. Only time will tell if he'll regret the current situation and do something about it.

As difficult and painful as it is, we have to accept that in a situation like this it is our own child who is ultimately responsible and I don't say that lightly, having been estranged from our youngest son and only GC for nearly 11 years.


Smileless2012 Mon 25-Sep-23 10:49:31

Providing it's done politely, IMO asking to exchange a gift from a family member including a m.i.l. is no justification for this behaviour from the OP's d.i.l.

DiamondLily Mon 25-Sep-23 12:19:50

I don't really understand the DIL's sulking over a wine day voucher. I've had these things and passed them on to someone that would enjoy them, and I've given various gifts, to others, that have been passed on.

Once a gift is given, it's up to the recipient what they do with it. I don't really get that there needs to be a drama.

If someone is really poorly in hospital, or they've just died, the last thing you want to do is a day trip, or babysitting.🙄

Honestly, the timing of all this is out of order. I would be furious with my son.🙁

Hithere Mon 25-Sep-23 12:25:31

I am very sorry for your loss

Other posters are wise to point that your son is the problem, not dil.

What support did your son offer when his father got ill?

I am afraid there is a lot of identifiable information in this thread- your son's name and places of residence are clearly stated, a violation of privacy in the internet world

Daddima Mon 25-Sep-23 12:37:14

I don’t really understand what Nicola is asking, as I presume she was upset when posting, and it looks like there have been issues for some time. It’s really something which can only be sorted out by those involved, maybe when Nicola feels a bit less vulnerable, as she is still grieving the loss of her partner.

AGAA4 Mon 25-Sep-23 12:40:20

So sorry Nicola. The loss of your DH and estrangement from your son is is very hard to take.
As others have said it is your son who is at fault for allowing the estrangement when you were suffering so much with your husband's illness and death. He should have been there for you even if he had to put up with a sulking wife.

Hithere Mon 25-Sep-23 13:19:26

How old is your grandson? That would give is an idea how long it may has been going on

Nicola1960 Mon 25-Sep-23 21:19:50

I have become to realise that ultimately it is my son . Yes you are right.

Just can't believe he could ever treat his mom and dad like that.

I suppose now I am at the acceptance stage and trying to build a new life without the love of my life x

Toetoe Mon 25-Sep-23 21:26:39

❤️ sad for you

Hithere Mon 25-Sep-23 23:39:26

How can you be in acceptance stage this fast when you didn't mention your son at all in the original post?

Clearly, we only have a small % of the story here

Madgran77 Tue 26-Sep-23 05:43:06


I have become to realise that ultimately it is my son . Yes you are right.

Just can't believe he could ever treat his mom and dad like that.

I suppose now I am at the acceptance stage and trying to build a new life without the love of my life x

Hi Nicola. What a difficult time for you.

You are facing a maelstrom of difficulties..your bereavement after caring for your partner; your estrangement from your son and his family; your concerns re your daughter and the impact on her.

I think you need to just allow yourself time initially. Dont push yourself to "accept" or to "move on". Just feel and think.

Try to gently separate out your bereavement from all the other stuff a bit ..think about your life with your husband; think about good times for the 2 of you in the past, allow yourself to have "bad days" and "good daus"! It is normal to have days when you just have to hibernate. Allow yourself those. Dont fight them. Take time with your daughter when you and she can. Talk about your husband when you want to with her and with friends. Do what you need to do for your own bereavement and to get to an acceptance of "the new reality" without your husband

The problems with your son and his family ...try not to let those impede the above for you. The "new reality" may or may not include them and your "new reality" is yours not theirs.

I think you need to just give some space on this one. Your son has to take responsibility for what HE wants in his relationship with you whatever the problems may have been over the years. It is understandable that you are angry with DiL but as you know ultimately the choices are his. You just arent in the right place at the moment to make any decisions on how to move forward on all this so just leave it be and give yourself and your son time. At some point you will feel more able to decide if and when you want to reach out or whether you will just wait or whatever.Dont try to rush yourself

Take care flowers

Whiff Tue 26-Sep-23 07:14:59

Nicola1960 like many estranged parent I never through for a second my son would turn from the loving,kind and caring son I knew for 32 years. Only to realise he was cruel and cowardly as he ended our relationship via email and follow up letter. I knew his 2 eldest boys and they loved coming here but because of the estrangement I have another grandson by then I don't know his name or date of birth. Only know he was due in July 2020. As I can't bear the thought of my grandson without a name I have given him one. My grandson's with my son and daughter in law are nearly 7,5 and 3.

I am lucky have a wonderful daughter and son in law and see my grandson's by them weekly. Aged 5.5 and nearly 3.

Sorry you are widowed and 61 to die from Alzheimer's is a horrible way to go. So you have joined the double whammy club as I call it you are grieving for your husband and now facing the living grief of estrangement.

It's a club no one wants to join. My mom had dementia she died long before her body . I can only assume your husband did to. Grief for the other half of yourself never ends and in my own experience it gets harder every year been 19.5 years since my husband died from cancer aged 47. At least I had a gap of 16 years before my son decided to dump me. But for you it's worse having to face both grief's at once.

For the time being just concentrate on your grief for your husband and no matter how hard it is just put your son's actions to one side. Only deal and come to terms with this when you feel stronger.

As much as you are grieving for your husband please look after yourself. It's hard I know but for your sake and his you must live your life the best way you can. 💐

Redhead56 Tue 26-Sep-23 08:44:14

What a difficult time you have had and it will take time to get over. You are hurting because you are estranged from your family because of your DIL and your DS lack of compassion.

The family you are close too treasure them while you recover from the loss of your DH taken away too early. Look after yourself and try your best to get involved more with friends keep occupied.

I hope your relationship with your DS and family can be reconciled at some point time will tell. Your loss of your DH will get easier because you have wonderful memories that will last forever 💐

hulahoop Tue 26-Sep-23 09:19:24

Nothing to add sending virtual(((hugs)))

Nicola1960 Tue 26-Sep-23 13:06:17

Thankyou all for your kind message I appreciate them really so much.

A couple of the comments I found quite upsetting and quite sharp. Data breech ...... and how can you accept this !!

DiamondLily Tue 26-Sep-23 14:20:25


Thankyou all for your kind message I appreciate them really so much.

A couple of the comments I found quite upsetting and quite sharp. Data breech ...... and how can you accept this !!

Posting on a forum brings forth different views, but you know your own situation better than anyone else.🙂

There is a support thread on this section, where the comments tend to be kinder.

All I suggest, being recently bereaved myself, is that you concentrate on grieving your husband, and take support from your daughter and any friends.

Negative and unhelpful people, even relatives,Nate best avoided at this time.

Best wishes 💐

Whiff Tue 26-Sep-23 17:33:05

Nicola1960 I know it's hard but ignore the negative comments. Why we use an username is to keep our identity secret . And by not mentioning real people by name . It's to protect you.

The support thread as DiamondLily mentioned is a kind place people there support eachother. Also it's mainly estranged parents who post there. So it might be better for you there. Without Smileless2012 and everyone else's support I couldn't have got through the last 3 years of my son estranging me . Have a read and see what I mean.

Madgran77 Tue 26-Sep-23 21:22:34


Thankyou all for your kind message I appreciate them really so much.

A couple of the comments I found quite upsetting and quite sharp. Data breech ...... and how can you accept this !!

Nicola I think the comment on data breach was not explained well. However I believe that there were 2 key points behind it:

1. The personal information you included about the areas lived in etc ..might enable someone including your DiL, Son, someone who knows them to identify the people behind your story, including you. That could potentially cause even more problems in the relationships etc. You or they may not wish to be identified by others who know you or know them. So this aspect could make you and them vulnerable to that.

2. Also the meaning behind "data breach" is that we each have private information about us that in an online world would be called data. Data breaches in law can be challenged. It seems unlikely that that would be done by family members but in difficult relationships there is potential for more problems.

The comment was badly expressed but you MAY want to think about asking GN to let you edit your original post to remove personal identifying information if it concerns you in light of the above.

In terms of "how can you accept..." not well expressed and certainly comes over as unkind, I think, in the name of "saying it as it is!" I'm not really sure it was intended to be unkind, I can see how it was not helpful for you atall at this point, when you are so clearly in a difficult time with bereavement and estrangement all mixed up in a maelstrom of emotion. You are going through a process and that will include eventual acceptance of the really don't need to be analysing every word you write or others write, apparently without thinking about context.

Please just focus on yourself, and what you need to keep going. flowers

Mamasperspective Thu 28-Sep-23 12:42:33

It's awful that you've had to deal with this bereavement but it seems your son recognises there is (separately) also an issue (either with you and him, you and his wife, or both) so I think that's something you need to look at more closely as it's hard to comment when all the blame seems to be on DIL.

You've raised a young man who now has his own family and his own responsibilities so you need to mentally come to terms with the fact he is going to pull away and not have as much time for you - you and your husband have just raised an independent, strong and capable man and for that you should be proud. His wife is now the number 1 woman in his life and they have their own nuclear family unit.

Don't get me wrong, more support during this time would have been the right thing for him to do but you won't get the investment of time or emotion that you got from him before and that's ok. You can't force people to visit those that are sick but he's a grown adult, he's made that decision for himself and that's something he needs to live with.