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my kids and grandchildren are an 9 hour flight away

(52 Posts)
Nanz Sun 02-Jun-19 21:35:57

Both our kids live a 9 and11 hour flight from us. Our daughter keeps in touch three or four times a week our son the odd video every few weeks. We were such a close family until our daughter emigrated and her brother followed. Does anyone else have all their offspring so far away? If so any tips on coping with not seeing them?

Avor2 Sun 02-Jun-19 21:46:35

One son lives in Portugal the other is thinking of moving to Australia (?) The son in Portugal has been there for 16 years and has a lovely family and life and we get there as often as we can, 2 1/2 hours on the plane is ok but if our other son goes to Australia that is so far away and DH isn;t getting any younger bless him and doesn't travel well so probably wont get there, we chat on facetime etc., which is lovely but I really would love them to be nearer to us. You do get used to it but it doesn't mean it is how you would like it to be. Sending love and hope you can come to terms with it.

Carus Sun 02-Jun-19 22:01:33

My son and daughter-in-Law and lovely grandsons aged 3 and 6 live an eight hour flight and four hour car journey away, they FaceTime me every Sunday without fail. I visit twice a year and we keep in touch through FaceTime. I lost my husband four years ago and my son and dil know how much this means to me. FaceTime is marvellous as we can all see one another and the little ones don’t forget what granny looks like.
Although there is a seven hour time difference we have sorted that out. If you don’t have FaceTime maybe you could Skype.

curvygran950 Wed 08-Jan-20 17:04:38

Two of my 3 sons live in Australia , one has a wife and 2 yr old daughter . It’s very, very hard not being able to see them very often and unless you are in a similar situation it’s hard to understand the real pain of missing them . However, we’re still fit enough to make the horrendous flight once in a while, and the boys visit for a couple of weeks a year if they can get the time off work . It helps hugely to keep in touch via watts app and FaceTime , and I also use Book depositary to send books to gd every month or so . Also to have knitting or sewing projects for the little one on the go. I brought the boys up to be independent , spread their wings and follow their hearts! But it’s hard ... .

TheReadingRoom Wed 08-Jan-20 17:42:04

@curvygran950 "I brought the boys up to be independent , spread their wings and follow their hearts! But it’s hard ... "

I know just how you feel as one son is in Vancouver with a young child and now a Canadian citizen, and his younger brother is in Perth, WA with his wife and young family. So no idea when we'll see them all again so we depend on Skype or Duo and short videos that we are sent of the grandchildren.

Grammaretto Wed 08-Jan-20 18:50:05

We have one DS (and DGC) in NZ so that is at least 30hours away, usually longer. Luckily we have others in the UK.
Almost everyone I know has DC and DGC who have emigrated.
One friend has 2DD in Australia and a DS in USA. (4 DGC)
We wring our hands and say "what have we done to deserve this" then we remember what a joy it is when we do meet and they all try hard to come home when they can and we make the long journey occasionally. They are very happy with their lives. We encouraged them to be ambitious, independent and to travel.
Meanwhile we facetime, WhatsApp and send letters and parcels and think about them a great deal. Join the club!
I'm counting the days...

NotSpaghetti Wed 08-Jan-20 20:06:10

I also use WhatsApp to keep in touch. I do feel sad sometimes when I know my son is so far away. He is in the USA but it takes us 16 hours. We have visited once only.

After nearly six years he has a business and a home there now and an American passport - I don't think he'll ever come back.

HettyMaud Wed 08-Jan-20 20:09:28

|Could you not go to live nearer to them? Upheaval is difficult but is it possible?

BlueBelle Wed 08-Jan-20 20:12:48

Yep NZ for me and 31 hours last time door to door I m going into mid 70 s now and probably won’t make any more trips it’s a tough tough never ending journey
I have one in Europe not so bad and one locally
I don’t blame any of them they need to make their own lives we are all in touch at least once a week I m used to it
I put up and shut up at the time and got on with life and I m fully accepting as long as they re happy

agnurse Wed 08-Jan-20 20:16:06

We live in Canada; Hubby's family are all in the UK. We have seen them twice in the almost 10 years we've been married.

Hubby has regular contact with them by phone and occasional video chat. Our daughter knows her grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins.

curvygran950 Thu 09-Jan-20 15:36:33

Grammaretto, I can’t tell you how comforting it is to hear from you (and others in the same boat ), thank you for posting . Is there a group/ forum on GN that all of us very long distance grans could join? I feel there is a need for one .

curvygran950 Thu 09-Jan-20 15:43:48

It was my Australian grand daughters 2nd birthday today, we had a birthday video wake up call ( thanks to the time difference) early this morning . DH and I went to our favourite pub for lunch , to celebrate our 2 years of being grandparents! ( as well as raising a glass to darling far away GD )

EllanVannin Thu 09-Jan-20 17:32:51

You accept the distance between you but you never really get used to it, at least I haven't in all the years they've been gone but at least the GC know me as I was there when they were toddlers.
I have one D, SiL and 3 AGC in Sydney. I've been a few times in the past but wont even try to make another trip there now. What I will miss will be GGC should any of them produce any.
Other members of the family will very likely pay a visit in the not too distant future.

Callistemon Thu 09-Jan-20 17:43:38

Last time but one it was 42 hours door to door!
This time we had a short time between connecting flights but that did put me in a bit of a panic, rushing from one terminal to another.
We do wonder how much longer we will be able to make the trip.

You do feel torn in two, but we are very lucky to have family here too not far away.

PamelaJ1 Thu 09-Jan-20 17:44:13

I’ve got one down the road and one in Sydney. Luckily🤔 the Aussie one hasn’t got children. I think it would have been much harder for me if she had.
So far I have seen my DD every year but I dread the time when , like Ellen I won’t be able to go.
What really irritates me is the people who say- oh lucky you, you can have lovely holidays. I’d rather she was close enough to see for short periods. I’m sure her DH does too!

Grammaretto Thu 09-Jan-20 19:16:34

Curvygran, it is hard but you just have to keep speaking and do it regularly so you both look forward to that video call.
Because of the time difference we usually choose Friday night, their Saturday morning, when we are all most relaxed.

Plan your next meeting whether here or there.
We are meeting in France in the Summer.

When DS and DDiL first told us they were going, they comforted us by saying that it might not be forever....
Then they found jobs, made friends, bought a house, had a baby and became NZ citizens so I am not expecting them back any time soon.

Today as I was driving through the snowy Scottish landscape, (on the bus) I was sent a photo of DGC on the beach with a beaming smile! It made my day.

Maybe a dedicated forum would be useful. Certainly advice as to how best to send parcels or books or toys so they don't cost a fortune.

Mopsx4 Fri 10-Jan-20 06:50:50

I too have 3 Dgc in NZ. I am there at the moment - we come for about 3 months at a time ( one year nz forChristmas next uk for Christmas)every year and rent a house near them. It is a great bonding time and in between we skype and use WhatsApp. They too are now NZ citizens and don’t think they will come back to uk. We are lucky to be able to do this as my husband works remotely even in uk - time difference does mean he is up late into the night sometimes.
My other 2 Dgs live a good 4 hour drive( on a good trip) away from us. I am lucky that I can mind them in school holidays and also see them in between as well. I have a very close relationship with them.
The cousins are all excited as the NZ grandchildren are coming over to uk in July - the first time for 3 years.

Grammaretto Fri 10-Jan-20 08:59:48

Mopsx4 that sounds great! We are not in a position to go for months at a time but I know people who do.

They want to see her family too when here, and all their friends and siblings. We are meeting them in France so they can be on holiday and not traipse round all the rellies but invite the others on holiday with us.

Persistentdonor Fri 10-Jan-20 09:14:13

My younger son has been away for 14 years now.
He has citizenship and won't ever come back; can't even afford to visit, though possibly his 3 children might back pack to the UK eventually.
I do try to Facetime with them regularly, but especially during their summer time they don't bother answering very often, which makes it harder not to grieve.
Oddly I do speak to them more often than to my other son and family in the same County.
I did raise my boys to be independent, though I rather wish I hadn't now. sad

Juliet27 Fri 10-Jan-20 09:25:42

Both my children live in Australia. My daughter and husband went there when my first grandchild was 4 months old - he is now 12 and his brother is 9. The family will be coming to UK for a holiday for the first time in those 12 years in September.
My son has been in Australia for 8 years, has married an Australian and they have a 21 month old son and they holidayed here last September. We fly out most years but I’m not so keen on spending time in Australia now and the empty nest syndrome does ease. We do spend time each week on FaceTime but of course it’s not quite the same as hugging!!

PamelaJ1 Fri 10-Jan-20 09:44:51

No it isn’t Juliet.
I’ll be able to give my DD a real hug in a couple of weeks.
Maybe not a kiss though, we may be wearing face masks!🔥🔥
I lived on the other side of the world when I was growing up.
No FaceTime then and if you needed to phone home you had to book it, if there was a crisis it wasn’t easy.
There are, of course, difficulties when you visit. Luckily we like our Sin L , he is very laid back and pleasant but staying in anyone’s house for a quite length of time can be tricky.

curvygran950 Fri 10-Jan-20 10:20:36

One of my two boys in Australia is married to an Aussie( met in UK) and he has applied for citizenship, DGD has a dual passport.They have a house and of course DiLs family are there... so I don’t think they’ll be returning . I’m getting more philosophical about that particular situation, but I really, really hope that the other DS
Doesn’t decide to stay . I had lovely news yesterday , that DS will be bringing DGD back for a 2 week visit in April !

Juliet27 Fri 10-Jan-20 10:41:59

My DD is definitely very settled in Australia but my son on his visit back here in Sept. said he now realises how much more there is to UK to appreciate. When he emigrated, all he was thinking about was sun, surf and women he says, but now he’s missing countryside, culture, birdsong, villages, village pubs so maybe one day....!🤞🏼

Esther1 Thu 23-Jan-20 15:08:31

There is hope - my children emigrated and are Australian citizens, both married and 2 babies were born out there. But they have returned - for good. The pull of family and home drew them all back. Love to all long distance Gransnetters- believe me, I have been where you are.

evianers Fri 24-Jan-20 13:06:58

We left UK in 1975 to live in the southern hemisphere taking our 3 year old who was at that time the only grandchild. We kept in touch by letter{!} those were the days. Moved from SA to Oz, then to Belgium and latterly to France. Meanwhile our DS left Oz and moved back to UK, marrying a local girl. Last September after 44 years, we decided enough was enough and moved back to England. Not an easy choice and believe me, it has taken a great deal of adjustment. Things have changed and then some! But we have looked upon this as a challenge, in accordance with our previous moves to various countries. Like Esther1, the pull of family has been too strong to ignore.