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Grandparenting

Trying not to worry but......

(32 Posts)
icbn2802 Wed 26-Jul-17 17:08:48

My daughter is expecting her first baby in a few weeks time. As the date draws nearer I feel myself getting more & more anxious.
I have a 3 year old grandson so am not new to grandparenting but I can only wonder (worry) how different a relationship with the new baby I'll have when compared to all that I have with my gs. My daughters are very 'different' and I've often felt a little distant from the "expecting' daughter-as a child I could tell she was very ambitious & always striving for more & better than I could offer. I guess it's this feeling that I'm struggling with......the idea of not being good enough, important enough & I fear the relationship she has with her "mil" is stronger & more at the level she's always strived for. Don't get me wrong I love my daughters equally and would do anything for each and everyone one of them and I dare say my daughter would be distraught if she was aware of my anxieties-but think right now she's got more than enough to worry about without me adding to it.
I really don't want to be stressing over such trivialities, wish I could just take it all in my stride but I just keep thinking about it and we all know that over thinking any situation is never a good thing.

Ilovecheese Wed 26-Jul-17 19:44:06

You might find that you become closer to your daughter when you are both mothers.
If the things she has been ambitious for have been career orientated or to do with money, they will not apply to having a baby.

She might have a good relationship with her mother in law, which is probably a good thing, but it's not the same as a mother/daughter relationship, more like a friend. What I mean is, your place as her mother will always be secure. You don't need to offer her anything other than being her mother.

Penstemmon Wed 26-Jul-17 20:42:31

My DD1 was far more independent and stayed away from home as a teen/student/ 20 something far more than her sister who was more of a home girl! DD2 had her baby first but once DD1 had her first child we have become closer again and enjoy a very positive mother/daughter relationship. I cared for (& still do!) her two for 2 days a week when she returned to work. I think she truly appreciates her childhood & the parental love and care far more now she is a (fab) mum herself. Try not to worry..just be the loving mum you have always been.

Jalima1108 Wed 26-Jul-17 21:31:49

Oh dear, in your earlier thread about this you said you were so excited so I wonder what has changed?

Just be there for your DD if and when she needs you and don't forget that this baby will bring its own love with it - it won't mean that you will love your DGS less.

icbn2802 Thu 27-Jul-17 06:37:45

Nothing has changed. I'm still so excited and cannot wait for the newest little bundle to arrive. I've just got a little more anxious.
I guess it just takes me back to when I was a new mum. My partner was not very supportive; pretty damn useless if I'm honest and I was very reliant on my mum and I guess where my daughter isn't so reliant on me basically because she doesn't need to be as her partner dotes on her and is very supportive. I suppose this could be why I'm anxious as to where i do & will fit in their lives.

seasider Thu 27-Jul-17 06:56:59

My friend was distraught when her son and daughter in law decided they would have a "babymoon" when their baby was born and allow no visitors for two weeks. After a few days of no sleep they contacted her for some support! Once your daughter's husband returns to work I am sure she will need your company and support. Just let her know you are there if she needs you.

icbn2802 Thu 27-Jul-17 07:14:05

"Babymoon" must confess I've never heard of that term though have heard of new parents having a 'no visitors' rule for a number of days. Eeeek hope they're not planning one of those; don't like the sound of that at all......

BlueBelle Thu 27-Jul-17 07:51:19

What a unusual idea, a babymoon never heard of that one most new parents can't wait to show their new addition off
Don't worry too much ichb it will all fall into place I think we all get anxious about new things especially if we ve been waiting a while for them to happen even new wonderful things Take your lead from the new parents as to when, how and what to do they ll soon be 'throwing' ( metaphorically) him / her your way
Good luck and exiting days xx

Imperfect27 Thu 27-Jul-17 08:05:11

icbn your OP brought back memories of my own anxieties during the waiting time and in the first week or so after the arrival of my DGS. L think I was surprised by how emotionally affected I was - and how worry affected me in a physical way too. BUT, after all the stressing, which included having to 'silently adjust' to my daughter's changing ideas about how much support she would want / need and feeling rather shut out for the first few days - they too had this idea of a no-visit-zone ... I was soon reassured that I was a much valued nanny and have built a lovely bond with DGS over the past 18 months. I have learned big lessons along the way - the hardest being 'patience' and the tightrope walk of when to stay silent - but it has paid dividends. DD and I have never been closer - I think this was a truth in my relationship with my own mum too - our daughters do need us - so much more than they realise - and we can make a vital difference by being at hand, or a phonecall away. Keep giving, keep sowing support and you are laying foundations for a lot of joy to come.

radicalnan Thu 27-Jul-17 10:51:02

You don't know yet how much she might need you or when. Prepare to share a lot of happiness you are her mum, no one else is.

My daughter said to me after baby number 3 'I never used to like you but I do now I need you'...........must have been the anaesthetic talking after her C section.......but she is on FB all day asking for help / advice / support so something worked.

Luckygirl Thu 27-Jul-17 10:57:47

I think you should stop worrying and look forward to the new arrival, whatever the quantity of contact that emerges after the event. Enjoy the wee one, even if you feel that more contact/advice etc. would be your ideal.

damewithaname Thu 27-Jul-17 10:58:07

What amazing womend you all are 😊 Helpful but respectful of your children/in-law children ways.

Op, take it a day at a time 😊

muswellblue Thu 27-Jul-17 10:58:51

My daughter used to write a parenting blog and has always been independent but I remember being super chuffed when she said once on her blog that when she got her first baby home no-one would do but her Mum to help her those first days.

Lindajane Thu 27-Jul-17 11:48:49

Both my daughters are very different. One more distant but have found the GC have bought us closer as I help out with them. She's always so grateful.

Craftycat Thu 27-Jul-17 12:04:41

As a grandma of 6 let me assure you that you will love the new baby. I was also worried as I just adored the first one so much right from the first sight of him but then I felt the same as each one was born.I'm not saying that I LIKE all my GC the same now they are growing up- one is a total nightmare & although I love her I find it hard to like her all the time- but as babies they were all adorable & I am sad I will not have any more.
All 6 staying with us several times in the next few weeks & although we will be exhausted it will be so much fun!

Relax & look forward to the birth & meeting your new DHC.

mrneduc Thu 27-Jul-17 12:35:56

I'm sure it will sort out. I wonder if in all this mother/daughter talk you could spare a thought for the Mums like me who have only sons despite being desperate for a daughter. They are all grow now and I have 8 DGC. I love them all and cherish the relationship with my dils however the ache of not having my own daughter has never left me. I pull myself together and am grateful for what I have but posts like this rub it in a bit. Sorry to be negative

ethelwulf Thu 27-Jul-17 12:43:05

Just read your final sentence again. Now make that happen...

mumofmadboys Thu 27-Jul-17 12:53:32

I too only have sons and would have loved to have had a daughter ( as well!) However I know I am very fortunate to have five healthy lads. One possible DIL is lovely!

GoldenAge Thu 27-Jul-17 13:14:22

There are lots of reasons why your DD might be distant, not least the one concerned with her own anxieties as the birth of her first child approaches. If as you say, she has always been independent and career-orientated, the push into motherhood will have her thinking about all sorts of issues relating to her own identity - she will be apprehensive about being out of control of her life as she gets closer to the arrival of the baby time when for the first time in her life she (DD) may have to respond to baby's wants rather than being proactive. The good relationship with mil is something to celebrate - it could be much worse. However, I would always say it's up to you to establish the relationship you want with your new GC. By the way do you know what your DD thinks of your good relationship with your GS from your other daughter? She might already know what you want and just be more distant because of the advancing pregnancy and more anxiety. She's probably trying to control things - and doesn't know how to encourage more contact. Go to see her and offer support, tell her how much you enjoy thinking about her babyhood - it will remind her of your close bond. Good luck.

pauline42 Thu 27-Jul-17 13:57:47

I understand how you feel. I have one very independent daughter who married a boy who has two younger brothers and no sisters. His mother idolizes her three grown up sons and they, in turn, adore their mother because she is a very generous hearted person who has always put her sons needs above her own. She lives for her sons and their families and is the most giving grandmother to her seven grandchildren.

When our daughter was expecting her first child I found this situation so challenging to live with, and when first grandchild was born I definitely sensed that my daughter was keeping me at "arm's length" and trying to balance/manage equal time to both grandparents! I really struggled with this because in my mind I expected my daughter would want more of my support and experience, simply because I was her mother! Several times during those early years I sat and explained to her how I felt, that she was my daughter and as much as I liked her mil, I still felt a bit resentful that she kept herself somewhat "distant" from my overwhelming desire to have a close adult mother/daughter relationship, and that I was very conscious that she was carefully sharing her life and grandson equally between the two of us.

Looking back now, what a waste of emotion that all was! I should have realized that we had raised an independent daughter and she was choosing to lead her life her way and that was how it was going to continue! But the irony of this story is that fast forward 15 years, they now have three children, we live in the same town and can enjoy being in our grandkids lives. But we also involve ourselves in our "retirement" hobbies and see our friends frequently.....we love our active lives! Whereas our daughter's mil is still "laying down her life" for her sons and their family and she is beginning to become a concern. She is now a widow - only takes holiday with her sons and their families, had no interests outside the home and very very few close friendships because her sons, their wives and her seven grandkids are the centre of her world and her one and only interest in life. Our daughter still has an independent streak in her, but generally speaking we get along well. I now understand the role I play in her life - and I realise she is respectful and grateful that we have both developed interests and friends beyond the limits of our immediate family. We still have the energy and desire to embrace life and yet take pleasure in being active happy grandparents to her three great kids without wanting them around 24/7. It's all work out very well.......funny how life comes full circle at times!

Legs55 Thu 27-Jul-17 14:08:53

Don't worry everything will fall into place once baby is here. Take your lead from your DD, don't interfere, things are different to our day, advice has totally changed even since DGS1 was born 7 years ago to when DGS2 was born 10 weeks ago. Make sure your DD knows you're there for here & will be on hand as required.flowers

FullH3art Fri 28-Jul-17 14:30:50

Just try to remember this is all about you of course. As we all know, children are emotionally scarred of they don't worship their grandmothers. "The idea of not being important enough". Yes, I completely understand. A lot of mothers would be more concerned with their own child becoming a new mom and wanting what is best for her. But you are rightfully concerned with only yourself. Good luck with all that.

icbn2802 Sat 29-Jul-17 11:09:03

Of course being a mum to 5 children naturally goes hand in hand with putting my own needs, wants and feelings first!!
Looking after my grandson 12 hours a day 2 days of the week. Allowing my daughter to continue working without paying extortionate child care costs, again thinking of, yes, just me again.
I post on these forums for a bit of guidance. 9 times out of 10 I find the advice given helpful & reassuring.

Jalima1108 Sat 29-Jul-17 11:12:45

I've got a bit confused - is it another DD who is expecting this baby than the one who is the mother of your DGC?
My DD are chalk and cheese!

icbn2802 Sat 29-Jul-17 11:19:42

Yes Jalima. My eldest is currently expecting. Second eldest is mum to my 3 yr g'son.
Very different girls.