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Grandparenting

New GC on way - feeling ambivalent

(38 Posts)
Dontaskme Sat 30-Mar-19 05:40:51

Some of you may have seen on the estrangement thread that we have been completely cut off from our other GC, something that breaks my heart on a daily basis.

We were good, kind, loving, caring and generous GP's, yet our best, it seems, wasn't enough and we have been shut out completely.

We found out a few weeks ago that we are to be GP's again (different AC) but I just feel nothing. I have no interest. I haven't even shared the news. Before I would have been excitedly buying all sorts, telling everyone, chattering away and looking forward. This time I find I'm having to literally force myself to smile and try and sound like I care. I sound so nasty, I know.

I feel sad for the GC we have "lost" and I feel sad for the GC yet to come. I know I have been damaged by what has happened and I want to feel happy but its just not there.

Miserable old bugger, I know.

sodapop Sat 30-Mar-19 06:51:36

Try not to worry quite so much about this Dontaskme . On one hand you are trying to protect yourself from being hurt again on the other its the joy of a new grandchild.
It will happen if you relax, don't try to force your feelings. Think about ways you can help without becoming over involved, as the birth gets closer you wil feel differently I'm sure.

Anja Sat 30-Mar-19 07:07:20

I’m a bit confused Dontaskme. Is this new GC one that you will have contact with?

mumofmadboys Sat 30-Mar-19 07:22:20

Once you meet the new GC I'm sure you will love them no end. Just relax about it.

MamaCaz Sat 30-Mar-19 07:23:29

Dontaskme
I agree with sodapop: try not to worry.

Just go with the flow, but, and this is a big 'but', make a huge effort to sound happy amd say all the right things when speaking the the parents-to-be, even if you have to go into acting mode - if they pick up on your feelings (which to me as an outsider seem perfectly understandable given your circumstances), they will undoubtedly be upset, and that would not bode well for the future.

I hope it all works out well for you in the end.

Urmstongran Sat 30-Mar-19 08:19:03

Your heart has been broken Dontaskme so I imagine your reluctance to engage is your way of protecting yourself. You have reflected upon all that love, energy, expense and time that was freely given nurturing your other, now absent, grandchildren. I totally understand why you feel wary and flat. However because it all went wrong once, it doesn’t necessarily follow that it will do so again.
Good luck. x

Dontaskme Sun 31-Mar-19 07:03:03

Anja - I certainly hope so! As I said this is a different AC.

I know its silly of me to worry and feel I don't want to get involved, as the likelihood of this one "disappearing" is zero, but then we never in a million years dreamt the others would be taken away, so who can say for sure?

I'll make a big effort to ask all the right questions etc. I did feign happiness when they told me and have tried when I've seen them, but its all fake and I feel bad as it IS going to be our GC. I'm out shopping tomorrow and I'll buy a little gift. I still get upset in the baby section, thinking of the other GC (still very young and one only 10 months old the last time we saw them), but I'll take a big breath and get on with it. Gender neutral grey and black here I come!

Thank you for your kind words and I'm glad you understand.
Happy Mothers Day! flowers

crazyH Sun 31-Mar-19 07:49:11

Don't ask me and all mothers here , Happy Mother's Day !
Hope you will soon feel the joy and excitement of the new baby. It's so hard, isn't it? But I wish you all the best flowers
To all mothers and grandmothers : HAPPY MOTHERS DAY !!!

cornergran Sun 31-Mar-19 07:50:32

Please be kind to yourself dontaskme, your reaction is protective and understandable. I’m sure with time the acted feelings and behaviours will become real as you begin to trust again. In the meantime you’re doing the right things, and being the best you can be. I’m so sorry you carry such grief, wishing you well today and every day.

Anja Sun 31-Mar-19 07:53:03

Dontaskme let me tell you a very personal story that might help. In 2008 my toddler grandson died, unexpectedly. My son and DIL were of course devastated. They have since gone on to have two little girls. Then my daughter told me she was expecting a little boy. I didn’t want another grandson it felt like I a betrayal of my dead grandson. Yes, illogical I know.

I couldn’t bond with the new baby when he was born. I went through the motions, much as you are doing. Then one day when I was baby sitting him and holding him, he was about 8 weeks by this time, he looked up at me and gave me this beautiful gummy smile.

My heart just melted and all the love i’d been holding back came in one big rush.

I’m sure this will happen to you too flowers ❣️

Dontaskme Mon 01-Apr-19 07:53:47

Again thank you for the kind words everyone.

Anja I am so sorry for the loss of your Grandson but am so happy for the love you now have for the new one. Thank you for sharing, its good to know (in a sad weird way) that others truly understand.

Foxygran Mon 01-Apr-19 11:08:55

You’re not a miserable old bugger at all. You are just hurt from your experience with your other GC.
I hope it will all come good for you soon.
Sending love 💐

Craftycat Mon 01-Apr-19 11:34:39

It's just self preservation. Go through the motions & I'm sure you will adore your new GC. Be 100% positive when you talk to your family- keep the worries to yourself & a few good friends.
All GC are different & all are special.
I really hope this may even mend the situation with the other side of your family. Nothing like a baby to mend fences.
Good luck & chin up.

25Avalon Mon 01-Apr-19 11:40:46

It's no surprise you feel this way. You have been so hurt before that you don't want to risk putting your self up for more hurt and disappointment. I am sure when the new GC arrives you will feel able to be part of the love and joy that he/she will bring with them.

Minshy Mon 01-Apr-19 11:43:11

It’s self protection I’m certain. And maybe you will feel that you are betraying the other children that you are not allowed to see. No wonder you are confused.
My D is just about to give birth, ( this week) and I have been told in no uncertain terms that I will never see this baby. I’m holding all the pain in. I’m very anxious this week, worry that the baby will be born safely. And that they both will be ok.
I’m not feeling much pain at the moment as I write. Bug it will come I’m sure.

Elles28 Mon 01-Apr-19 11:52:23

I so understand how you feel. My ADs have ceased contact with me since my Dad died, haven't seen them or GDs in over 2 years. We live over 200 mile's away but make the journey, stay in a hotel and ask them to join us for a drink or a meal but there's no reply. It hardens your heart inevitably, to protect yourself. We also have a new GD born a year ago overseas. They have been over a few times but I've only found out through Facebook pics. We had arranged to meet this August so hotels were booked. Then a change of plan they were coming earlier. Luckily we managed to change hotel dates. We are both disabled so break the journey with an overnight stay half way. It's a major undertaking for us, physically and financially, and even at this stage I still worry they will change their plans again. I never thought I could feel this way but ambivalent so accurately describes my feelings now after years of heartbreak. It is possible to love but not like AC.

PamGeo Mon 01-Apr-19 12:05:13

I had a little cry reading your response Anja, very sorry about your little grandson but pleased for you with your little heart mending gummy smile. I agree with the comments about self protection Dontaskme, maybe in a quiet moment you can chat with your son and explain how you are feeling so he'll understand and won't misunderstand anything. Sons are normally more straightforward in their analysis of emotions, or is that just mine ?? anyway, I'd try that if you think it would help. Lovely news on the grandchild and I hope you get many lovely chances to enjoy

icanhandthemback Mon 01-Apr-19 12:30:48

I think you are experiencing a sub-conscious self preservation barrier. It will go as you get to know the child. I find myself far more reserved with my daughter's child because my DD is quite capable of stopping contact at the drop of a hat whereas I know that the parents of my other grandchildren would never be so unkind.

queenofsaanich69 Mon 01-Apr-19 12:48:16

I definitely would not mention it to the expecting parents,they would be very hurt.I feel so sad for you,could you try counselling,your heart has been broken so be very kind to yourself-------write everything down and that may help,then tear the letter up,as others have said when the baby comes and you get to see him/her smile that maybe the answer.Thinking of you and send a hug.

rosemary55 Mon 01-Apr-19 13:07:24

Whats AC ? Looked on the Acronyms not there, just this could make it a whole different story smile

Nanagem Mon 01-Apr-19 13:28:06

AC is adult child Rosemary.

Yes Ellis, I believe it’s very possible to love but not like, when my eldest was newborn he was very hard work, cried 24/7, would scream himself sick, we found out he had bone problems which caused him pain but at a 2 or 3 weeks old we didn’t know. But anyway, I told my doctor I was concerned because I just couldn’t bond with him, and even disliked him. My kind old family doctor took hold of my hands and said “when you come here and tell me you don’t love him I will worry about, until then let’s get some tests done”, very kind man, and very true words.

oldmom Mon 01-Apr-19 13:28:57

Rosemary55: Adult Child.

Rather a weird acronym I always think. An adult is not a child. But I'm not a grandparent.

Sandigold Mon 01-Apr-19 13:31:01

Please don't worry. You are grieving and anger is part of that.

ReadyMeals Mon 01-Apr-19 14:19:30

It's just an understandable psychological defence system trying to protect you from being hurt again. I think it's probably healthier not to get TOO emotionally invested in grandchildren. After all, they're not ours and we don't want them emotionally dependent on us either unless of a turn of events has made us their long-term guardians.

Nwieaa Mon 01-Apr-19 15:21:52

I understand how you feel. I've also been just about cut off from my grandchildren. I've only seen my 14m old grandson twice for an hour or so each time, and it was made clear by my dil that I wasn't allowed to pick him up or hold him. His sister is nearly three and I so wish I could know them. My son is an only child so there won't be any more grandchildren. I hope things work out with your new grandchild; I'm sure the live will come. Xx