Gransnet forums


Is it okay to say let's skip this summer

(77 Posts)
Overit Mon 27-May-19 19:22:19

My daughter has 2 children 14 and 11. My grandaughter is 14 and grandson 11. Every summer since they have been born I have paid for them and their mother and myself to go on vacation to various places. In addition my grandaughtr has spent one week at my house since she was 9 mos old and now the grandson wants to spend a week. But this year, I AM TIRED. I do not want to have to move my furniture around and then put it back when they come. I don't want to spend all the money I spend when they visit, and frankly, I no longer enjoy all our "adventures". I am broke and I am worn out and I will gladly continue to take them to a few places with their mother and pay for it, but I don't want to have to entertain at my house. Am I the only one who feels this way and is it okay to tell their mother no visits this summer? It really stresses me out.

Sara65 Tue 28-May-19 07:49:02

Are you on your own overit? Because I know I’d find it harder without my husband around, he does all the boisterous stuff like roller coasters, tree walks, that kind of thing, which I’d run a mile from.

I know it’s been said, but talk to your daughter, try and reach a compromise

Flossieturner Tue 28-May-19 09:01:48

I think, because your daughter lives far away, she has not noticed that you are getting older. I do a lot less with my GCs now because it is tiring. I am lucky that all of my children are within 80 miles so they visit and notice me slowing up.

I would tell your daughter that is very tiring now and ask her to work with you to achieve a solution. Tell her your health is not as good as it was.

sodapop Tue 28-May-19 09:14:08

That's harsh Bradfordlass we do not all come from the same mould. The OP was being honest and has done a lot for her family.

ditzyme Tue 28-May-19 09:16:26

It is absolutely OK to say no more, I've had enough, I need to have time for myself now. I will happily go on the occasional day trip, and pay for it, but that's all. But one word of caution from my own experience, it may be taken by her that you don't want to be with them and that makes you an unnatural mother/grannie.
I too, think you know what to do but wanted affirmation that it was all right for you to stick up for yourself, wanted us to say you were right to do it.
You say you have done it all these years because that's what grandparents are supposed to do? Really? Well, no wonder I don't have any relationship with my own, because I simply won't do something I don't want to do, not at my age. I don't like people much, never mind children, and am selfish about my time, plus there are serious health issues to contend with, none of which is relevant to this post, but I so hate it when expectations on how you behave are forced on people. We are not all the same, because we don't like being around children/people in the family, doesn't mean we don't care, which is how it came across to my son's partner. But any excuse to kick the old dragon out of their lives, one excuse in a long list....
Be true to yourself.

sodapop Tue 28-May-19 09:28:45

I'm glad some other people understand ditzyme It seems also that women should conform to these expectations but not men. Hey ho thus it ever was.

Sara65 Tue 28-May-19 09:39:31

Well we aren’t all the same sodapop, and no one should have to do what they don’t want to do out of obligation or guilt, Life’s certainly too short for that!

Just seems a shame as the children seem so keen to keep visiting.

Justanotherwannabe Tue 28-May-19 09:58:29

Loulelady, just what I was thinking, no-one could be hurt by that.

jenpax Tue 28-May-19 10:09:16

Some responses have been very harsh! We aren’t all the same as grandparents just as we weren’t the same as parents! Some people have more energy than others and find children easier than others, and there should be no pressure to behave in a standardised way!
I would echo the advice of several posters and chat to your daughter, explain that you no longer have the resources both physical and financial that you may have had in the past and are will struggle with a full on week. Say that you don’t want to disappoint the children but is there a way you can work together to give the children a good holiday and still see Grandma

Coconut Tue 28-May-19 10:09:17

I ended up with 3 grandsons one week aged 7, 8 & 9, and like you was drained at the time with work and just not up for amusing them. So I found an Airbnb Cottage with a pool fairly close and they were in their element in the pool from 8am till 6pm. I merely laid on a lounger, read a book and watched them ! I do feel that you should be honest with your daughter tho so that she can also come up with suggestions.

Barmeyoldbat Tue 28-May-19 10:17:53

Very honest post. As we get older we do get tired quickly and we don't want to be running around with children all day, just the responsibility makes you tired. So I would have an honest talk with your daughter telling how you fell, tired and broke. As for your gc, well he is really looking forward to staying with you for a week. Could you have him on his own and get him to help you sort things out in the house. You didn't have to do things that cost loads of money, have a look around and find some free events. If you live in Wales there are plenty of free places to visit that would interest him. just don't feel guilty.

TerryM Tue 28-May-19 10:22:08

My father from the time my son was 4 years old he would take him away for two weeks.
It stopped when my son was 14
I imagine dad was getting older and getting tired .
So now fast forward 20 years my son and I have many amazing memories of the trips ( me of two weeks peace lol )
I saw my parents very regularly but dad just didn't organise a trip one year.
No issue no animosity.
I suppose if i thought about my son was becoming a foul teenager and hard work
I dont think it is wrong. You sound like you have done a stack for them and are tired

nipsmum Tue 28-May-19 10:30:51

It would appear Overit has the money and energy to travel 400 miles several times a year to visit and be entertained. So the problem is having to entertain 2 almost teenagers for one week out of the 52 in the year. Why is she wanting advice on what to do. I'm tempted to say get over yourself,

Chinesecrested Tue 28-May-19 10:32:00

So how old are you, OP? Not that it really matters, if you've had enough, you've had enough.. You've been very generous over the years and deserve a pat on the back for that. No doubt the dgc have thoroughly enjoyed themselves, and wouldn't have come if they hadn't wanted to - regardless of what bradfordlass says. And yes, scale it down now. Explain to your DD the reasons why

jaylucy Tue 28-May-19 10:34:07

I think that you must be quite honest with your daughter and say that financially you would find it a struggle to pay for the holiday this year and anyway you feel that you need a bit of a break, much as you love them.
It sounds as if your daughter has taken it for granted that you will pay for everything - or the fact that you have been sucked into this idea of what grandparents are supposed to do and has just gone along with you putting your hand in your pocket, thinking that you were enjoying doing it - no doubt you insisted in the first place, so she took the easy way and let you!
If you have you GC to stay, is there any reason they can't help you to move the furniture with you? Why can they not just stay for a long weekend or Monday to Friday on the understanding that they are delivered and collected from your place rather than you travelling?
Must admit, the idea of booking a B&B or hotel near to where they live is a good idea - wherever you spend time with the GC, enquire at the nearest Tourist Info or go online to research free activities that are available.

EisforEgg Tue 28-May-19 10:42:05

I think some honesty is needed here. At their ages they should be able to get the house ready when they arrive and move everything back before they go. They are definitely younger and fitter than you. Would this help? Could they travel to you independently too?

lincolnimp Tue 28-May-19 10:57:04

I just think that one week out of 52 isn't a huge thing, but obviously really important to the GCs.
I think that your GS will be really hurt if he can't do what his sister has done. This could cause problems with your relationship with him---is that what you want?
I'm not sure if the plan is for you to have both the children together, or separately?
If you have the room, having them together would be so much easier than separately.
Get them to do things to help you. My GC (14. 12, 9)spent a lovely day helping me plant out new plats in the garden, even planning where they should go. Also making delicious cocolate brownies.
They have also been known to deep clean the sitting room for me--OK, only the once as it was an unusual and fun activity---just the once.
At your GCs age you don't have to spend loads of money to 'entertain' them, I am sure they just want to spend time with you---and yes, I am sure they will bring their screen with them, or let them borrow your computer if necessary for timed sessions

trisher Tue 28-May-19 11:08:39

At 14 and 11 they are old enough to move the furniture for you. But if you don't want them that's fair enough. I do think you might actually point out to them that they are welcome to come but because you are gettig older you will expect them to pull their weight and not be waited on. After all if you get them used to doing things for you now when you really need help they will know how you like things done!

Tweedle24 Tue 28-May-19 11:12:02

You have every right to say no. I am sure your daughter and grandchildren will understand. Just explain that you really do not feel up to it at the moment. I do feel, as some others have said, that some of the replies have been a bit harsh. Perhaps you could organise some other way of seeing them without having to tire yourself out by having them stay with you.

JanaNana Tue 28-May-19 11:22:14

I think you've been a kind hearted and generous gran over the years doing what you've done for them. My late MiL was involved in our children's lives quite a lot, but once she realised it was becoming too much she used to say, " I'm not as young as I used to be" so we"lle have to start doing things differently now. If you tell them in a friendly way that things will have to change and that you would like them to give you some ideas you might be pleasantly surprised by what they come up with. Have this conversation with them all together and then you can guage what might be possible or out of the question. Make a little list together including your daughter, and say there isn't a big budget now. Maybe your daughter needs to realise too that we don't always have the same stamina that we used to have or necessarily the inclination to do the same as we have always done.
Weekend breaks at caravan parks, were they do 3 or 4 nights and generally have a pool and restaurants and other entertainments are worth looking at.
You might well find a compromise that suits you all well.

annep1 Tue 28-May-19 11:24:01

Ditzyme well said.
"Get over yourself". Rude...not the only rude comment on the thread though. Why do GNers become rude on posts?
As for the gs wanting the same. I have gc who are at uni and some at primary school. There is no way I can equalise the time or money spent on each. The young ones get much more than the older ones ever got because I am retired with much more time and money. That's life. You can over worry.

EllanVannin Tue 28-May-19 11:24:51

I wish I had the bloomin' energy to have my GGC with me, or even take them out like I did when my GC were young but I haven't and my family understand, thankfully.
When you aren't as energetic as you were it's not fair on the children either.

luluaugust Tue 28-May-19 11:27:17

Having just been away with a party of 40 adults all around our age I can only say how much we differed in what we could do, some people were really struggling with the transport others finding it hard to walk and keep up with the leaders, if you feel you can't manage a week you must say so. Teenagers now can spend hours amused by their phones but I also worry we are not doing enough to amuse them every day. I think you will find fairly soon they won't be coming so much anyway as friends and outside interests take over. If you are still a young gran perhaps get the tiredness checked out.

Kim19 Tue 28-May-19 12:26:32

Just sitting here thinking how much I envy the OP her opportunities. However, at the moment, I have the desire, energy and perhaps sufficient funds therefore no helpful opinion whatsoever.

Gingergirl Tue 28-May-19 12:46:23

I haven’t read all your replies and don’t know the logistics of it but your daughter also needs to understand that you are (as everyone is) getting older, and what you did when the kids were tiny, isn’t necessarily what you want, or are able to do now. You shouldn’t need to apologise for this. Also, funds are an issue and you don’t need to apologise for that either. Hopefully with your daughter, you can come up with something that everyone is happy with. If she takes offence, frankly it’s her loss, and shows some immaturity on her part. Stand your ground. You’re doing nothing wrong.

sarahellenwhitney Tue 28-May-19 12:54:11

There is a phrase 'only start as you mean to carry on'.
With the best will in the world many have to draw the line at some stage and you should not reproach yourself for having to limit what you can now do for your family.
We all need 'me' time and for what you have done and still doing none more worthy of this than yourself
I hope you will talk to your daughter and if she is a loving caring daughter as you are a loving caring grandmother will give you this long deserved and well earned 'break'.