can't see one grandkid, must take them all or none. what?!

Tired_of_thisOctober 21, 2013

My daughter and 2yo granddaughter moved in with me after her divorce. I grew very close to my little GD and she loved living with us, having her own queen-size bed and bathroom all to herself. They lived with me for a year, and then moved into an apartment once my daughter got back on her feet financially. Several months later, even though my daughter had her own place and could easily support them both, they moved in with a man who had two girls of his own, age 3 and 6.

I am not allowed to see my granddaughter anymore for special days out, a play, lunch, shopping, anything like that. I was told in had to take all three girls, not just the one. My daughter told me, "You need to understand you have 3 granddaughters now." That's fine, but I don�t WANT to take all three! They�re lovely girls, but having a bunch of screaming, hyper girls out in public somewhere is simply not my idea of a good time.

Back in March 2013, when she and I had a discussion about our mutual desires and expectations, I asked to be invited over to her house for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, during the week or on weekends, so I could spend time with the kids as a group, but I never received an invitation. Only to large events such as birthday parties, that sort of thing, where there are 50 people in attendance and the kids are running around doing their thing. Nice, but not a bonding experience.

I resent that my granddaughter has been kept from me. I have a beautiful pool and movie theatre in my home and it was like pulling teeth to get my daughter to bring the girls over for a visit. (They live 30-40 minutes away). The day they finally did come, my granddaughter wanted to play with her dollies, and the other two were jumping down the staircase and throwing toys off the second floor balcony. I couldn�t believe how poorly behaved they were! And I�m supposed to take them all out in public? I don�t think so. That event was this past spring; my daughter brought the girls over to swim only once this summer.

I would have liked to spend time individually with these kids, but that�s just not allowed. I had wanted to take the older girl out for her 8th birthday for a mani/pedi/hairdo day and lunch out, but never got a response. Ridiculous.

And now, my husband and I have moved a 5 1/2 hour car ride away and the daughter and boyfriend have just had an infant son together. I had planned to drive down to see the baby (I would only be in town for a day and a half, as things on my end here didn't allow for a longer stay). I asked if there was some way to see my GD for a bit and was told unequivocally no.

It was suggested to me by several people I relayed this story to, to contact my ex-son-in-law to see if I could pop over his place just to see my GD and much to my surprise he said yes. He mentioned it to my daughter who had a fit, so I cancelled my plan to visit over at his house.

I was so distraught, especially after being so excited at the prospect of seeing my little GD, that I told my daughter I didn't feel welcome and that I wasn't going to come by. I did make the trip to see other family and friends, and found out that she hid both the infant and my GD in the event that I 'decided to come by and make a scene'. I am just sick over this. We've always had our mother-daughter issues, but I can no longer communicate with her.

I will continue to send cards and gifts to the kids - all of them, of course - and just keep silent with my daughter and her boyfriend. I feel as though that is my only option.

I can only hope for the passing of time and as years go by, maybe somehow I can see the girls. Any advice would be welcome.

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I think you better sit down and have a good talk with your daughter. Lots of adjustments on both sides. You mentioned taking a 8 year old for a hair thing, man/ped etc. Not a good idea. How about a trip to the Zoo or someother fun thing. I have 4 GD and 4 Greats and we do fun things. Picnics, zoo trip, beach walks (for 2) etc. Because your DD is not married and has a new baby, there may be issues you are not aware of. I attended many many birthday parties with the other relatives and kids and ???? and had a ball. If you do not talk these things out, you will loose your family entirely. You many need some counseling for guidance. Good luck

    Bookmark   October 21, 2013 at 11:03PM
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Thanks for responding. But if I was able to talk to her, I wouldn't have to write here! She sees what she wants to see, hears what she wants to hear. I had a talk with her back in March and I thought we had hashed things out. I said to her that I felt as though each of us wanted something from the other but wasn't sure what, and that we were talking past each other and not communicating. I thought we hashed everything out.

The kids are real girlie girls and love having up-dos and that sort of thing. But I don't want to bring all three at once, and I shouldn't be forced to. I don't know where this socialized view of child raising is coming from, and why I am being vilified for wanting one-on-one time. My best memories of my grandparents were when we did stuff, just me and them. My brother never cared if they spent time with me, and I sure never cared if they took him someplace. I may see a therapist if I can't get peaceful in my head without any help.

I don't have anything against birthday parties, but big gatherings were the only times I was invited over. That, and standing in a soccer field; not only did my daughter and her bf ignore me, but standing around with my exH, his new wife, my daughters exH and new gf. Not much fun, and no time with the kids.

    Bookmark   October 21, 2013 at 11:17PM
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I think it's perfectly reasonable to want one-on-one time with your biological grandchild. I am not a grandparent. I say this as a parent of school-aged kids.

It's unreasonable for your daughter to insist that you take all three girls. She can't insist that you become immediately interested in being a grandma to the boyfriend's kids. They have their own grandmother. Sure, you can be friendly and warm and take them occasionally, if you feel like it.

It sounds like both of you are reacting to perceived slights and hurts. I know this kind of thing can be very painful. If you have had mother-daughter issues in the past, she is probably sensitive and has her guard up.

As hard as it may be, do not take this personally. I think therapy may be a good idea. I would continue to send birthday cards and gifts and try to be as gracious as possible if she invites you over for birthday parties or soccer games.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 1:04PM
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We now live out of state, about a 5 1/2 hour drive, so seeing them isn't possible. I was supposed to go visit her and the newborn baby (she and live-in bf have a child now as well), but I ended up not going because she was being so nasty to me, refusing to allow me to spend time with just my granddaughter.

I found out from her ex-husband that she hid both my granddaughter and the new baby that day, in case I ended up coming by anyway. WTF?!

I severed ties with her on Facebook after I found all that out, as well as a few other relatives, because I was so distraught and couldn't bear to see photos of the kids popping up in my news feed - kids that I knew in my heart I would never be allowed to see again.

She and I had a huge falling out, in which she attacked me for intruding on their vacation at Disney.

(She, bf, and the kids spent a week at Disney; my husband and I flew down and stayed at one of the resorts and hoped to be able to walk around with them at one of the parks, to watch the kids have fun, and maybe even babysit so daughter and bf could have time to themselves. We were initially told that it would be great and we could meet up, but then after airline tickets were purchased, were told no, it was private family time - at DISNEY?! We were allowed to meet up with them for breakfast at one of the parks - which we paid for - and then had to go our own way and not walk around with them. Crazy.)

But now, she says we intruded on their vacation, that the bf didn't even know us, that the kids didn't even know us - but this was only last fall. She's lost her marbles.

No, I'm not taking this personally, and I've stepped out of the line of fire and she can do what she wants. She told me that 'her children can't be bought' and to stop sending gifts. I'd sent a canister of popcorn to them for Halloween, but she thinks I'm buying them off…

It's my granddaughter's birthday this month, and I'm sending her a card with a few dollars in it. I don't know what I'll do if she sends it back to me in the mail.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 1:18PM
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A lovely woman wrote to me in private message who wished to remain anonymous. Just wanted to thank her, if she sees this, for reaching out to me. I really appreciate it.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 8:09AM
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I wanted to say for your daughter to assume you want to be an instant Grandma to two girls who may have 2 other Grandmas out there is ridiculous...would she demand the other grandparents to take her daughter? I bet not...most people would be offended by that demand...does not sound like a request...

One big issue that is not addressed is what kind of man is she living with? Did he automatically become attached to another mans child? Is he fit to be with your GD? Could that be the reason your daughter is aloof now, so you do not pick up on that? If he is not...

It sounds like she is trying to keep something from you...the Disney trip sounds fishy..maybe they do not get along and do not want it to get back to her daughters father....

I know historically, daughters are closer to their this is kind of unusual in have to remember that they are not legally attached and may not want to be...she may be back at your house with two kids again...and I am sure she knows she could come back...

You will then hear why the strange behavior went on...the whole all kids or nothing is wrong...and I will tell you why...your GD will miss out on one on one time with you...and may never have any bond with these ready made sisters...may not spend but a few more years with them and when they are gone...she will not have them or you....

Your daughter just does not sound stable for some reason....and cannot help wonder if your ex son in law sees anything wrong with this picture....I know what it is like to have a disinterested DIL once she does not feel like you can benefit her no longer...

I applaud you for moving on with your life by moving to a place not local to that mess....some mothers would stay local to keep the beat down good comes from that...I have felt recently that it would be easier for me emotionally if I did not live within 25 min of my sons family due to the stark coldness of both he and his wife..not much contact with the GK's anymore...we have to initiate every husband is a work addict and I have had some physical limitaations you can imagine how hurtful to wake up and realize you mothered a child that became distant with you in the same town..

My son is ruled by this woman...and I am so embarrassed to admit I raised a child who did not establish that his parents were important...Move on till your daughter wakes up...but by being told you must now spend time and money on children that are not biological is her way of getting them off her hands and onto yours....the one losing out is your GD...especially if her new siblings have a doting grandparent that does not let that rule carry weight...I wish you the best with this...sometimes we have to just let go

    Bookmark   December 7, 2013 at 7:50PM
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Sketcher25, thanks so much for your support.

The man she's with: he has barely spoken to me or my husband. The few times we have been invited to their house (with lots of other people there as well), he walks past my husband, doesn't make eye contact, and has actually ignored him and walked away when my husband has tried to make conversation with him. This guy - he's a state trooper - isn't exactly bubbly with anyone else there, either, so it didn't seem personal. The first time this happened, I called my daughter to see if everything was ok (I thought maybe they had just had a screaming fight right before we came over or something, because it was 'that weird' over there), and she said that everything was fine. But her ex-husband said the new guy is very controlling, and that's what I saw as well. My daughter and GD moved into his childhood home, and he did not want my daughter to choose paint colors, etc. when they were redoing the house. Ugh.

And yes, I thought it was outrageous of her to tell me, after giving me a smack-down for asking to take my GD on an outing, that "You have three granddaughters now." Huh? It's interesting how it was only a one-way arrangement: I had to suddenly do everything with all three of them, but yet I was not invited over to spend time with them, to get to know them in any way other than huge, raucous family gatherings.

My daughter is behaving like a teenager, who, with the first bit of freedom and independence, is thumbing her nose at me, and summarily dismissing me. She recently told me, in a Facebook message, that we had intruded on their Disney vacation, and that we felt like outsiders because we WERE outsiders. Hmm. But I guess we were good enough to tolerate for the year that she and GD lived with us. The year she paid absolutely nothing for rent, utilities, or groceries; the year that my husband built a $100K pool in our backyard for the GD to enjoy. But we're intruders and outsiders. Ouch.

The only healthy option is for me to enjoy my life and keep moving forward. I sent the kids a big tub of flavored popcorn for Halloween but got a message back from my daughter, saying not to send gifts, that she and her kids can't be bought. I still send my GD a birthday card last month with $5 in it. Not sure if it got tossed in the trash or not. Sending the kids (all 4 of them) a little something for xmas, and no doubt will not hear anything from them that it was received. I had plenty of issues over the years with family members for one reason or another, but would never not have my children call them to thank them for a gift. I am utterly bewildered at my daughter's savagery.

The funny thing is that my ex husband (daughter's dad) married a woman who was very cruel to my daughter growing up, and this is now the woman who my daughter sends flowers to on Mother's Day. I don't understand.

Trying to figure all this out, though, is a waste of time. I can only bide my time, and who knows, maybe 10 years from now, I will have an opportunity to reconnect with my GD on our own terms. And yes, who knows how long that family relationship will stay intact; who knows what my daughter and GD (and now, GS) will do if and when that living arrangement collapses. Sad, all of it.

But there is nothing I can do to make things better, because any time I reach out to try to come to some sort of understanding, I am smacked away. I will be happy up here in beautiful New England with my husband, I will travel, garden, make friends, play with my dogs, and enjoy my life. I miss my GD so much, but nothing stays the same for very long. It's probably the only thing I know for sure.

    Bookmark   December 8, 2013 at 9:36AM
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Oops wrong thread.........sorry.

This post was edited by EmmaR on Sun, Dec 8, 13 at 17:29

    Bookmark   December 8, 2013 at 5:27PM
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Sketcher25 have a good what you need to do for yourself at this point....NE is beautiful....enjoy it..

I have a sister who went through a dilemma with her daughter...and son in was painful to watch and in the end, it just tore us up as siblings...and we have not spoken for 4 yrs...she did not know how to deal with it except to push everyone away....but my mothers family did that, and my mother was not good to her daughters when they became maybe some of that was pain was from her past...

I have worked with LE, in my last job, so, I know exactly what you mean when you describe this guy....there is an almost drill sargeant attitude they possess and also have an air of detachment from anyone who does not have a badge...because they fancy themselves to be above it all...the air up there is very thin....they have a self imposing importance with having the authority to enforce rules and laws....saw it many times...

But, when someone cannot look you in the eye, they might be hiding something...and when a daughter turns her back on her mother, she could be hiding something....

I also allowed my son to live with us so they could sell a house and not rush to find a house while DIL brought major attitude in the house, did nothing....went to work but expected me to cook nightly meals....I had not planned dinner for years as my husband worked in p.m....they basically had the kitchen and house to themselves....

But DIL still acted strange, unfriendly..did not want to share the 2 GS with me at son acted unhappy and depressed and she ended up making it appear as if they had to find a house immediately...and I had that crap for 5 mos in my rent was paid and they got angry when my husband asked them to clean out the bathtub...I never saw them not clean their own home when they had it, so why not clean mine...none of it made sense...not then and not now...

I have had many cruel comments thrown my way and I still made myself available to them for sitting with GC...I have tried to just keep an intact family because growing up, my mother did not care whether her kids were older son seems like a person I used to know...and that person is very blurry....

There are times where I hurt deeply from it....and really fear what the future holds for both my husband and myself....I am not as lucky with the relationship with my spouse...he has a difficult time with comprehending why things are the way they are and it has caused major conflicts between us...he came from a horrible set of to admit your son is becoming distant is just too much...

I am sure there are times that you wonder what those PTA meetings, after school activities, birthday parties, and all the great things you thought you were doing means son knows his wife is not going to give me the time of why cause marital problems..

I guess I agree if that is how he feels.....

I hope your ex son in law is monitoring things well as it relates to his child....don't let the LE title fool you into a sense of false security...I can tell you stories that would shock you....steps and live ins need to be watched for the childs well being...I have seen GP end up with custody of their GK after finding out there were unfit conditions...and to be honest, if I ever suspected any wrongdoing....I would be on them with a magnifying lense .... that is something I have not had to ever deal with, but there would be zero tolerance for that...child or not...

The lack of appreciation is horrible....its at those times when the well has to dry DIL and son I am sure have their kids write thank you notes to friends and her family...but we have not received any since they left our house 4 yrs ago...and our gifts never stopped..

People reading this must think we are either fools or horrible parents....but it can happen to parents with all the right just takes the wrong person for them to be connected to....if anyone heard what I am dealing with and remembered the time and care I gave as a parent, they would not believe it...I always thought my mother had distance with her daughters because of how she lacked with us...just not caring....but its not the case at all...

I told my second son the other night that I never got to be the grandparent I wanted to be....always had to be fearful of not pleasing the DIL and not being able to just have fun with the boys...he is expecting a son as well, but I sense his wife will be the same way...she is very hard to know...I cannot believe this has happened....

Sorry this is so long...i just had so many thoughts about your situation and how familiar some of it seems to me....I would never stop writing your GD....sending money may not be spent on her...but send a card once a week....with silly thoughts and just be who you are...

I read a sign recently that said:

Dear Stress, I want to breakup.....

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 9:23PM
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Actually I think you are handling it wrong.

I know you probabIy aren't reading here anymore, so I'm answering for the possible benefit of others in this situation.

What happened was you got into a power struggle with your daughter--one you were guaranteed to lose.

You are both stubborn, and both filled with 'should, should, should'. You SHOULD be able to take your GD alone. You SHOULD show no partiality to one child over another. You are both right and you are both wrong, and it doesn't matter because 'should' doesn't matter.

What matters is that she is in charge of her children, and she makes the rules. Period, end of discussion. Speculation on her relationship with her fiance or her mental health is just foolish and self serving and arrogantly presumptive. It's very common for people in conflict to villify the opposition, and it's foolish because, even though it makes you feel better temporarily, it ***makes things worse***!!!

When you boil the problem down, it comes to this: you take all the children, or you get none. You've already talked to her about it and presented your case against her policy, and she's rejected it. So you are back down to the basic: you either take all the children, or you will have no relationship with any of them.

You have a valid point, taking care of three preschoolers all at once is too much for you. You've told your daughter, it didn't change her policy. And in a way, she's right. Why should your inadequacy change her policy which is likely based on what she thinks is in the best interest of all her children?

Instead of butting heads with her and trying to force your will on her, why not work around the problem. The problem is not her policy, the problem is your inability to deal with 3 children.

So why not bring a friend or hire a babysitter for the day to help you and then take all the children to the zoo or park or someplace where it doesn't matter?

You are playing manipulative games by going around your daughter's back and trying to set up something with your ex soninlaw. And intruding on their trip to Disney was not a good idea. It sounds as though her fiance doesn't have a warm relationship with you. It would be odd that he'd want you on his expensive vacation. I question how that all came about. If you invited yourself and she was lukewarm and said something like, "that sounds lovely, maybe", that's not an invitation. An invitation is totally initiated by them.

Getting yourself in a miff and withdrawing because you aren't getting your way is relationship suicide. You are guaranteed to make yourself more unhappy. Ten years from now, when your granddaughter is a teen and your grandson is a preteen and neither know you, you will NOT be able to reestablish a relationship with them. It's fantasy thinking otherwise.

I would call your daughter, apologize, and arrange first to see all of them in those big parties, and at the side of the soccer field. Remember those occasions are not about you, but about the child. If you are uncomfortable around the other people, bring a friend to watch the game with you, so you aren't intimidated by your ex and his wife and your dau and her fiance, etc...

Then after you've reestablished contact, take the girls out together. Work around your limitations, don't expect the children or your daughter to manage them. Stop being so rigid. I agree, she's rigid too, but she's not the one deprived of the child you love. You have to work around her.

That's realism, fighting it is sure misery. Right or wrong, that's the truth.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 10:20AM
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BananaBread, thanks for your input and opinion.

It's not an 'inadequacy' that had kept me from taking all three. It wasn't what I wanted to do. I wanted to see the kids individually, get to know them and develop a relationship with them; not deal with three screeching, unruly little girls.

The Disney vacation: I'd never been to Disney before, and my husband contacted my daughter and said that he would like to bring me to Disney, and that it would be fun if we could meet up at one of the parks to see the kids have fun. She agreed that it was a good idea and the two of them moved forward with plans. It wasn't until after our plane tickets were purchased and hotel reservations made that she started acting strangely. They had rented a house for a week, and hubby and I were staying at one of the Disney resorts. We had a full itinerary of our own. We only wanted to be able to meet up at one of the parks - where thousands of other people are - to see the kids get on rides.

Her fiance: we'd met a few times and exchanged pleasantries. They were under the most innocuous circumstances - family parties, birthday parties, etc. - so there was no time for misunderstandings, harsh words, disagreements, or anything like that.

I'm not getting in a 'miff' because I'm not getting my way. There was no room whatsoever for compromise. I wanted to be invited over for breakfast, or lunch, or dinner, during the week or on weekends, to hang out with the kids without a dozen other distractions. I offered to babysit whenever they might want, but were told that they don't go out, they spend all their time with the kids.

So you telling me I'm doing this or that wrong, is not especially helpful. There are many, many other people in this situation where their kids are using the grandkids as 'weapons' in one way or another, for a multitude of reasons or excuses.

She has come up with every reason in the world to tell me 'no', no matter what I suggest.

So thanks for your opinion on things, but please feel free to stay out of this thread going forward if all you're offering is criticism of me. Thank you in advance.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 10:48AM
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But you aren't getting what you want. You can't have what you want, and by not adjusting your attitude you aren't ever going to get what you want. You are going to lose it all.

She doesn't have to compromise, it's not a question of compromising; she is getting what she wants. It's not her job to give you what you want or to ensure your happiness. She's not the one suffering.

She wants you to take all the girls, so figure out how to make that work for you. If you don't figure out how to make it work for you, you end up with nothing. You don't want that either (or do you?).

So you end up with the choice of two things you don't want:
1) taking all the girls (and figuring out how to make that work)
2) not seeing any of them at all (and learning how to live happily with it).

Which choice you take says a lot about you.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 4:42PM
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BananaBread, I have moved 5 hours away, so taking all three girls is no longer an issue. Had you read the entire thread, you would've seen that.

I don't have an attitude that needs adjusting. I did not raise my daughter to be inflexible, unkind, and unwilling to participate in a solution that will make everyone happy. Those other two girls aren't even her children.

Go away, BananaBread. Enough.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 5:25PM
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When you call someone up and say you've never been to the vacation spot they are going to and you'd like to be there when they are there...well, that IS inviting yourself on their vacation.

Your husband put your daughter in an awkward spot. It's hard to say 'no, we don't want you'. And even if she liked the idea, it wasn't just her vacation, it was her fiance's too. Had they really wanted you on their vacation, they would have asked you. That they didn't ask you says it all. And they did tell you 'no' after the tickets were bought--and you still insisted on meeting even after you knew absolutely they didn't want to. Frankly, it was very nice of them to have that breakfast with you--when you knew they didn't want to. Once you knew they didn't want to share their vacation with you, you should have just done your own thing. Your unhappiness shows that Disney didn't matter to you as much as being with the girls and babysitting. The truth is you DID intrude on their vacation, and it further damaged your relationship with them. You need to own it.

Re-read your posts, and notice how often you focus on what you want and don't want:

"It wasn't what I wanted to do..."
"I wanted to see the kids individually..."
"I didn't want to deal with three screeching, unruly little girls..."
"I wanted to go to Disney..."
"My husband wanted to take me to Disney..."
"I wanted to meet at the parks..."
"I wanted to see the kids get on the rides..."
"I wanted to walk around the park with them..."
"I wanted to be invited for meals..."
"I want to hand out with the kids w/o distractions..."
"I want to babysit..."
"I don't WANT (your caps) to take all three..."
"I don't want to see them only at parties with other people..."
"I don't want to take them out in public..."
"I don't want to deal w/ out of control children..."
"I want to take my granddaughter for a spa day..."
"I don't want to take all three..."
"I don't want to go to soccer games..."
"I don't want to see them at huge, raucous family gatherings..."

Remember it's not your daughter's job to make sure you get what you want. And the fact that you chose not to see your grandson because you wouldn't get alone time with your granddaughter must have hurt your daughter a lot. That's a pretty hostile statement: rejecting a baby because you aren't getting what you want.

You are also sending mixed messages: family gatherings, soccer and having all three girls at once are out, but Disney (certainly a quiet, private place?) is okay. You don't to 'deal with' all three unruly, out of control girls, but you want to babysit the same screeching girls, both at home and at Disney? It's hard to figure out what you really want. It seems you want what you want when you want it.

You admit to a history of personal conflicts with both your daughter and other family members and you acknowledge that at one point your daughter was worried you'd show up at the door and make a scene. Your daughter has out and out told you that you are an outsider, and her fiance won't make eye contact or much acknowledge you, although he is distantly civil. You've been accused of intruding on their private family time and trying to buy people. And when there is a problem you take no responsibility for your part, but default into blaming your daughter, going even so far as to slander her mental health.

These are markers for a very common type of family dysfunction, one that can be resolved if you are willing to be straightforward in counseling and willing to change the parts of yourself that are contributing to the dysfunction.

I understand you having developed a close bond with your granddaughter in that year she lived with you (6 years ago? you mentioned she's recently had an 8th bday). I understand wanting to continue that special relationship. I understand and don't blame you if you don't feel the same for the other two girls. I understand you'd want to recreate the special times you had with your grandparents with your granddaughter.

I don't understand why you'd throw the baby out with the bathwater, why you wouldn't see your brand new grandson or why you'd choose not to see your beloved granddaughter if the circumstances didn't fit your wants of the moment. I don't understand your lack of flexibiity. Your daughter is not using her children as a weapon, she's just not indulging you. She's not hurting you, you are hurting yourself.

A good therapist could be a wonderful help.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 6:01PM
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"...I did not raise my daughter to be inflexible, unkind, and unwilling to participate in a solution that will make everyone happy."

The solution you want won't make her happy.

"Those other two girls aren't even her children."
Yes they are.
Holy cow.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 6:05PM
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And sign me:

Bio mother of 3, step mother to 2, adoptive mother of 2, and grandmother to 8.

They are all my kids.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 6:08PM
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BananaBread, I don't know what your problem is, or why you have taken such a keen interest here. Move on. What part of 'go away' don't you understand? I am not interested in anything you have to say. Stop posting on this thread. Go away, move on, find someone else to harass. I don't want to hear from you anymore. There is something seriously weird here in your over-interest in what I've written and what my situation here is.


    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 8:08AM
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Open forums don't work that way.

You said any advice would be appreciated. You were given advice--but not what you wanted. You apparently wanted only to hear: poor you, it's unfair, your daughter is mean and cruel, you should get what you want.

That kind of head-patting you can get that from your friends. It's not working for you. You would not have come here if you were satisfied with your friends' sympathy.

If you don't want to permanently lose a important part of your family, you have to do something different. You can't change your daughter, but you can change you. It's uncomfortable and maybe even painful to look at your own, but ultimately, if it helps you to reclaim your family, it's worth it.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 9:02AM
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This isn't about entertaining 3 girls instead of 1.
It's about isolation.

The fact that the daughter *hid* 'just in case' her mother showed up sounds an alarm;

Why would a healthy young woman whose mother has helped her so generously in the past suddenly turn into a paranoid nut?

because she's been groomed to do so.

Isolating his significant other from her family is one of the first steps in an abuser's plan.

& one of the very best ways to isolate someone is to make her think it's all her idea;
encourage her insecurities, get her to align with you & against her family, & chances are her family will roll their eyes & write her off as an ungrateful, unreasonable brat.

I'd bet that this guy was elated when OP indicated that she doesn't have the wherewithal to entertain 3 girls all day long (which is an entirely reasonable thing to say).

He undoubtedly presents himself as a loving compassionate father, & he would have acted hurt, vulnerable, sensitive, crestfallen on his daughters' behalf...but bravely smiling.

If the "all the girls or none" gambit hadn't worked, the boyfriend would have waited for the next opportunity.

If the concern actually had been for the boyfriend's girls, OP's daughter & the boyfriend could have taken his girls for a 'special day' while grandmother took her grandchild.

In OP's shoes, I'd be extremely worried about my granddaughter.

There are guys out there who cultivate women to get at their daughters.

Has anyone checked out the boyfriend's past?

checked records for granddaughter being absent from school lately?


You've got a lot of burdens, Tired, & I wish you well.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2014 at 10:42AM
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Oh for Pete's sake, there is ABSOLUTELY no reason to think the fiance is some kind of psycho abuser wanting to molest OP's granddaughter. This is blame-shifting at it's finest. It's irresponsible and slanderous and it doesn't help the OP at all. If anything is leads her down a false path that will only make her problems with her daughter worse.

Per OP, the fiance doesn't seem to like her or her husband much. He is not warm, doesn't make much eye contact and seems to avoid them to a certain extent. However, she also reports that he is civil and there's been no open hostility or disagreement or harsh words. He appears to dislike them, but has not withheld his daughters from the OP, which he could have done if he disliked her intensely. OP considers his daughters to be unruly brats who don't really belong to her family, altho she's willing to make a small effort to play step-grandmother if it's not too much trouble. The fiance did participate in the Disney breakfast altho it was clear he was not happy about it--so he's willing to accommodate her to a certain extent to keep family peace. To try to blame the estrangement on him, and then escalate him into an abusing child molester is ridiculous.

In any interpersonal conflict there is fault on both sides, even though usually everyone wants to believe that they are completely innocent and misused. If you are estranged from a family member, you ARE partially at fault. People don't like hearing that; they think they must be an exception, but it doesn't work that way. And nothing can be resolved until they are willing to own their part of the problem. Nothing. In fact, it will continue to get worse as long as someone insists they are perfectly lovely and always correct and complete victim.

The OP has a multi decade relationship with her daughter. It's long and complicated. But we know that her daughter worries about the OP making scenes, and that worry would be based upon past experience. We know the daughter has accused OP of trying to buy her and her children, and in fact OP did state she built a $100,000 for a 2 year old (altho I am sure that's not the only reason the pool was built I hope). The problem was severe enough, the daughter forbade further gifts and the OP worries about gifts and cards being returned. She has only recently sent a tub of popcorn at Thanksgiving which is not inappropriate, if it came before the request to stop sending gifts. If it came afterwards, it was pushy and way out of bounds.

Per OP she's had problems with several other family members. And she was pushy and insensitive regarding the Disney trip. They invited themselves, and then when they found out they weren't wanted after buying the tickets but before getting on the plane, they did not change the date of their vacation or did not go as scheduled but stay away from the daughter's family (which would have been easy to do). She insisted on a breakfast. She did not respect what they wanted.

We can also see from what the OP wrote that she has conflicting requirements, she doesn't want to be in large gatherings with the girls, unless it's at Disney. She doesn't like coping with all of them, but is willing to babysit. She calls them unruly, out of control and screeching, but says they are lovely. She doesn't want to take them out in public, unless apparently they are at an amusement park.
We also see from the OP's post that she is reactionary, resists self insight, and lashes out easily when she doesn't hear what she wants to hear. You can imagine how difficult would be for her daughter to deal with. And the OP's rejection of her newborn son over not getting to see her daughter alone would be very painful and angering. The OP is unreasonably rigid.

We see from what the OP wrote here she is very focused on what she wants and does not seem to be much aware of the wants of her daughter. That her daughter wants something different than what OP wants does not make what the daughter wants wrong or bad, just different. But OP doesn't see that, she only sees that it is not what she wants and finds that sufficient basis to judge her daughter's wants as being wrong.

Two strong willed women whose wants conflict does not in any way mean a third person is an child molesting abuser. It's very clear that the OP is at fault here.

The daughter is also at fault. She is as inflexible as her mother, and just because her mother is rigid, does not make it right for the daughter to be rigid. What harm would it be to allow some time for grandmother and granddaughter to be alone together at least on occasion? One would think the daughter would understand OP would like to recreate that time she spent with her grandmother and the time when her granddaughter lived with her. I wonder if the daughter has nice memories of spending time along with her grandmother, or did the OP not facilitate that relationship?

I also wonder if the daughter is worried about her mother showing favoritism among the children. The favoritism is clear (and understandable perhaps) especially the distinction between the biological granddaughter and step granddaughters, but it's hard believe the daughter would tolerate her mother favoring her daughter over the son.

The daughter also has problems communicating with her mother. She didn't want her mother to come on the vacation and yet when her parents asked, she didn't say so right out then. Perhaps she was afraid of a scene. But that's not an excuse to not be clear. l Perhaps she thought it was rhetorical, it wouldn't really happen, or thought it meant it was something they should do sometime, not necessarily this time. A sort of 'let's do lunch' proposal. But again, it was her responsibility as well as OP's to make sure they were talking about the same thing.

OP said she seemed initially approving of the idea then changed her mind after the tickets were purchased. Maybe she liked the idea but her fiance didn't and she encouraged the self-inviting without considering it was also her fiance's vacation and she should have spoken to him before allowing anyone else to crash the vacation, particularly since he's made it clear, they aren't his favorite people. So perhaps she initially encouraged her parents to join the vacation w/o thinking of her fiance's feelings. And then she found herself in the awkward position of having to backtrack. (btw, that the fiance may not have wanted OP and her husband on the vacation does not mean he's a child molesting abuser)

So the daughter is at fault too. But the daughter isn't the one writing here, she's not the one deprived of the relationship with these children. Children who won't be children for long.

OP however is the one looking for answers, and the only responsible answer is for HER to change some of the things about her that contributes to the problem. Doing the same thing she's done for the last 5+ years is not going to suddenly work. She needs to do something else, and blaming the fiance is not that something else. Looking honestly are her part in the estrangement is.

A therapist would be a worthwhile investment.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2014 at 3:17PM
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BananaBread, I don't know quite what *your* problem is, but I read your other posts, &, although you've shown some breathtaking insight when the OP is the 'child' in the relationship, when the OP is in the 'grandparent' role, you've blasted almost every single one as being out of line, & now you've blasted me for more or less the same thing (for the record, I do know the signs of grooming & of abuse).

Your comments are offensive, confrontative, demeaning, & insulting to people who have posted here because they just want to love & be loved by their children, & your earlier comment to the effect that you would noy go away, even when OP pleaded with you to leave her alone, because "that's not the way an open forum works" sounds just exactly like "you can't make me".

Perhaps you resent your own parents?

Maybe a therapist *would* be a worthwhile investment.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2014 at 9:31PM
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