Gransnet forums


Feeling sad & inadequate

(49 Posts)
icbn2802 Wed 13-Jun-18 17:05:26

My gs is nearly 15 months adorable little boy, makes my heart melt everytime I see him, once or twice a week. Just recently I'm struggling with feeling inadequate........we all want the best for our children, tried my best with my own despite them still not really having much. I know it's not about the material things that are important but it'd still be nice to have a little to give. Though I cannot help feeling inadequate when compared with his other g'parents. They are in an enviable position of being able to give.....a variety of plans in the pipeline....treats, family holidays, a secure future.....and I know it's ridiculous but I feel myself welling up whenever my daughter mentions anything that's happening for her/them. I wouldn't want to take anything away from the opportunities that lay ahead for my daughter & her son but am left feeling inadequate 😓

Luckygirl Wed 13-Jun-18 17:12:53

Then say so - when your DD talks about these opportunities, give her a hug and say how much you wish you were in a position to do the same things for her, but that she will have to make do with lots of love and practical help from you instead!

Nanabilly Wed 13-Jun-18 17:18:20

Icbn .. We are the same but we give plenty of time and fun and love and guess which set of GPS the little ones want to spend time with. Us.

ninathenana Wed 13-Jun-18 17:20:02

Well said Luckygirl

Maybelle Wed 13-Jun-18 17:21:31

Giving love and spending time are gifts valued beyond any other.
My daughters still talk of shared times, spent together with family, over and above any gifts they had .

knickas63 Wed 13-Jun-18 17:22:21

My parents were extremely broke, and had no material wealth to give my children, but none the less they were loved dearly! They gave them time, sympathy, cuddles and biscuits! MIL had money to spend, and did! But although they love her, there was never that closeness. Money doesn't count. Your love, understanding and time will.

agnurse Wed 13-Jun-18 17:43:58

Children don't usually notice how much "stuff" their grandparents give them. Even if you can't do as much materially, you can still provide valuable memories. Reading together, baking together, making crafts together, spending time together...all of these are just as valuable as physical objects.

BlueBelle Wed 13-Jun-18 17:53:24

Oh dear Icbn please don’t feel inadequate it really isn’t about material things the other poster are so right your time is so much more important and there is so much you can do with them when they are little without costing anything walks in the park, playing in the garden, sandcastles if youre near the beach, drawing or pasting on the kitchen table also charity shops have brilliant toys for very little money in fact ours go for almost pence 50p onwards They can be washed and disinfected if you are worried about cleanliness although we don’t let anything go out that isn’t in great condition
It does get harder when they are teens but by then you will have established a full on relationship
Just to make you laugh when I put Icbn in the first time the text changed it into Archbishop 😂

crystaltipps Wed 13-Jun-18 18:04:12

Children won't remember who bought what or how much things cost. Its not a grandparent competition, you both love your children and grandchildren. Nothing can diminish your relationship with your daughter and her family. Be pleased that she's not going to struggle financially and there's plenty of love to go around.

wildswan16 Wed 13-Jun-18 18:20:55

Maybe they will be the ones to take them to Disneyland, or go ski-ing. But you will be the one who spends an hour watching worms, or finding the biggest leaf in the park, or teaching them how to knit, or .....

I know it is difficult to see others apparently "doing" more for the family, but every grandparent is precious.

icbn2802 Wed 13-Jun-18 18:42:05

Thanks for all your kind words (inc the Archbishop Bluebelle!) I guess I'll sort things in my head in time.....I have an older grandson & have never had any feelings of inadequacy where his other family are concerned. It's just hard when you have dreams & aspirations for your little ones (& the bigger ones of course) only to see others fulfil those dreams.....the ole green eyed monster can sometimes be a real devil to control.....😕

BlueBelle Wed 13-Jun-18 18:57:00

My youngest lives in another country and has used the same child minder for all her children (18 years) they have obviously become firm friends I meet her when I go over and visit, a nice lady, she goes to their school grandparents days and other important milestone days etc and I see the photos I m truely glad they have her but yes inside I get a bit of a green eyed feeling which isn’t logical at all When my daughter was 40 she asked for money to get her hair done plus other things which I gave her, when we next met she showed me a special necklace she was wearing that the child minder had brought her for her 40th it felt so much more personal than my present I got that ‘should have been me’ feeling so you are not alone at all I m sure it’s human nature to get these little twinges and don’t beat yourself up about it we re just normal loving parents and grandparents and do what we can do I m sure it is appreciated

agnurse Wed 13-Jun-18 20:18:08

My parents gave my grandmother a lovely poem to hang on the wall. When my nephew was born, Grandma gave it to my mum because she said my mum was the Grandma now :-) It reads:

Walking With Grandma

I like to walk with Grandma
Her steps are short like mine.
She doesn't say, "Now hurry up",
She always takes her time.

I like to walk with Grandma,
She sees things as I do.
Wee pebbles bright, a funny cloud,
Half-hidden drops of dew.

Most people are so busy,
They do not stop and see.
I'm glad that God made Grandma
Unrushed and young like me!

Experiences can be just as valuable and even more memorable.

Jalima1108 Wed 13-Jun-18 20:23:38

Give your time and your love - they are both precious!

Doodle Wed 13-Jun-18 20:26:17

icbn with us it's the other way round. We are the 'well off' and other GP not got a penny to spare. We give our son and wife money for material things, treats for our DGC outings, meals etc. I have never for one minute thought we were better grandparents and our DGC has never spoken differently of us than other GP. It's not about money. It's about time, love, playing, that's what counts. Our DGC loves other GP and so he should. All kids love treats and things but as they get older they realise one can only give what they have. Giving money does not make you a better GP. Give the 'free' things, your time and love.

Applegran Thu 14-Jun-18 09:59:43

I agree with all the posts so far! Giving time, and love and listening to them are the best gifts you can give your grandchildren . I remember someone saying "This child needs a good listening to!" A wonderful gift, just to sit, being interested, giving them space. And there is something else you can do which they will remember and value - I often send my grandchildren letters, with some photos, and just write about what we've done together, or what they have said and done. My DGS called them the What We Did letters and they love them! After 10 years I had a book made of all the What We Did letters sent to two of the GC and gave a copy to each of them. Will see if I can do that for the others. Its just an idea! Its the time, love and listening which are the greatest gifts.

anitamp1 Thu 14-Jun-18 10:03:11

I think many people get these feelings from time to time. But there are regular posts on here from people with serious family rifts which affect their contact with their children and GC, who must envy you. If you have good relationships then you are blessed. I bet your family really appreciate the time you spend with your GC. Time and love are more important than material things.

Feelingmyage55 Thu 14-Jun-18 10:07:55

Having been brought up in a family where all the material needs were met but not the emotional ones, may I say that love, praise, affection, time and your very presence are all things that money cannot buy but are at the top of my ‘giving’ list for family and friends. Also if you feel that tangible things are important, and you do, why not give homemad presents, biscuits with his name iced on, knitted toys of the up to date trend, plenty of free patterns, show him how to make paper aeroplanes, origami type things (craftsy), planting cress, sunflowers - many things. But love is the most important.

holdingontometeeth Thu 14-Jun-18 10:08:09

You have the best present ever to give, your unconditional love, warmth and trust.
Enjoy your little one and stop being negative.

BabyLayla Thu 14-Jun-18 10:14:56

Children understand love, it makes them feel safe.

Yellowmellow Thu 14-Jun-18 10:23:06

I agree with everything said in the other posts. This is more, I think abut how you feel. I have a tin from the Pound shop and at the end of the week tip whatever change I have in it. I also have a jar where my 'coppers' go when its full I give it to my grandchildren. It usually has about £20 in it. Not bad for 'coppers' that float around in the bottom of my purse. Depending on how much goes in I can have £200 in my other tin when I open it. maybe you could put just a little cash away and then use it for little treats.
I am fortunate enough to be working, but the time will come when cash isn't so free.
I look after my youngest grandson, aged 3 quite a bit at the moment. We do 'petting farms etc occasionally but he's just as happy feeding the ducks, going to the splash park (free) going to the local park where there's a wooden fort and a zip wire etc. It's not all about money.
Spending time with them, loving them and giving a nanny's/granny's love is far more important.
Tell your daughter how you feel...I'm sure she will say whatever everyone else is need a hug x

jenpax Thu 14-Jun-18 10:28:28

I am certain this is a common feeling. All of my adult children are in two income families and are better off than me to start with.two of the grandparent sets are comfortably off, again there are two incomes. I have had to learn that I can’t really do the huge fanfare expenses,bar one trip I paid for for us all to go to Euro Disney and which set my finances back to the extent that I haven’t been able to afford any real treats for myself for 2 years. It was a one off for me and I don’t regret doing it but know I am unlikely to be able to afford to do again.
However I send little treats like books from Amazon, funny little gifts from Etsy, I often pick up bargains in the Cath K sale and send them ad hoc. I do face time with grandchildren who don’t live near and keep up to speed with school stuff so they know I am thinking about them even when I am not there😁 other grandparents can pay for villas on the med or a cruise and I just think how much fun the tiny ones will have and that’s the main thing. I am not as hard up as it sounds as if some grandparents might be but it’s all comparative! Try to focus on the fun you have with the little chap, he will remember this with more affection than a new large plastic toy!

cassandra264 Thu 14-Jun-18 11:00:32

Agree with everyone about how time, expressed love, trust and warmth are more important than any gifts. My own ordinary family background has given me most treasured childhood memories of my dear grandparents: sitting out in the sunshine chatting and helping prepare vegetables for Sunday lunch; gathering holly and ivy with them - from which we would then make Christmas decorations together; and walking to the baker's shop together, and being allowed to choose a cake for tea!
My partner came from a wealthy, but abusive and neglectful home. He was given many expensive material things -but only ever felt wanted, safe and happy when sent out of the way to stay at his despised (because materially poor) grandparents' council house. The hugs, kisses, approval and acceptance he received here did more than anything to turn him into a loving and caring human being who has played his part in helping to make the world a better place.
Don't underestimate how very important you are!

marionk Thu 14-Jun-18 11:08:39

Same thing here, ex husband and other GPs have lots of cash to spend, big present lots of treats. But who gets called on most for child care? And who do the little ones ask to go see if they haven’t been round for a day or two? US!

Hm999 Thu 14-Jun-18 11:17:39

It would be pretty dull if we all offered the same thing. Children need a variety of experiences. Her parents love going to interesting places with DGD, so she and I play in the garden or ride on a bus, mundane stuff.