Since they are 77 and clearly not involved I wouldn’t have sent them that note. You’re not going to change a thing and it appears that you rarely see them anyhow. At 77 and rarely seeing them I would just make the best out of each visit.
Of course any young kid is going to be bored to tears going to grandma and grandpas after a few hours. That doesn’t mean they need to know about it. At their age and level of closeness you might only see them a few times while they are still healthy. It sounds like your MIL is probably already past that point.
I personally wouldn’t hold my parents to task in their waning years. You probably have way less visits left than you think so enjoy them for what they are, you’re not changing or even correcting a 77 year olds behavior at this point.This message has been edited. Last edited by: 1s1k,
The grandparents want distance, give them distance. All the distance you can spare and then some. Their present involvement is a no value add to your life so make the necessary adjustments.
I did this to my own for nearly 2 years. They blinked first. Things are somewhat improved now.
I had a similar issue with my mother early in my marriage. I told her very clearly and calmly that my wife and I were one person for purposes of all things family and as a result any slights to her were slights to us--I would never take anyone's side against my wife, including my mother's. Does that mean my wife is perfect? Of course not, but any issues we have are dealt with between us in private. She tested me on this a couple of times but once she realized that my family was a package deal, that our relationship was indivisible as far as everyone outside our home was concerned, she backed off.
This may resonate with your mother if she understands and accepts the Christian model of marriage and, paradoxically, it might lessen her concerns. (I'm not presuming to know your worldview, by the way, but I think it's a good philosophy for marriage that also happens to be Biblical.)
| Get my pies|
outta the oven!
We tried to have a phone call with them tonight…tried being the key word here.
It was a short call and things got ugly quick and we ended the call after both my parents began attacking us. I told them this was unacceptable and not like them at all, then I ended the call.
Bottom line, they’ve unfortunately lost their daughter in law forever because my wife is done with them and it’s going to be a loooooong time until they hear from me again.
It’s sad and I do wonder if they are going through some sort of old age thing or early senility because we had a pretty good relationship with them when they did bother to come see us and the kids or we went to their house.
Honestly we went through a similar spell after our first child was born. This was already after a fiasco when my wife and I where dating and at our wedding. My parents where a mess and my mother is very opinionated and never admits any wrong doing. We where given the speech that we never visit or try to make contact and that they where the ones always trying to make contact but we would always turn them down. Granted this was a result of my work schedule at the time being Saturday to Tuesday and my wife working Mon-Fri most weeks with some weekends tossed in. Needless to say we didn't' have availability. My parents also tossed in the good ole "your not living for the Lord and need to go to church."
Things got rocky there for a bit and we didn't talk for over 6 months. Feelings where hurt, but it also set the precedent for my parents that we also have a choice in the relationship and if you choose to ignore our opinions we're out. It was a long road to get where we are now as my wife wanted nothing to do with my parents after that incident. Now 10 years after everything my mother and wife are closer then my mother is with my sister's.
Parents seem to forget that children also have a choice in the relationship, particularly when they are adults and no longer in the home. Your story is like many other's out there unfortunately.
| Get my pies|
outta the oven!
I looked this up last night and went "holy shit", I never realized that my parents EASILY qualify for at least 6 of the 10 here:
Toxic Grandparents Checklist: 10 Signs That There Is A Problem:
1. Undermining You As A Parent
2. Denying Having Made Any Parenting Mistakes
3. Feeling Entitled To Time With The Grandchildren
4. Playing The Victim
5. Trying To Buy The Grandkids Love With Gifts
6. Manipulating To Get What They Want
7. Meddling In Your Parenting Choices
8. Playing Favorites With The Grandkids
9. Wanting To Be "Grandparent #1"
10. Telling Your Child Critical Or Hurtful Things
Toxic Grandparents Checklist: 10 Signs That There Is A Problem
It's sad but we are going to have to put distance between them and us right now. My wife is devastated and astonished today, she keeps asking me "were they just pretending to like me the past 10 years?"
I may catch a pile of _hit for this, but I have to disagree with the "walk away" mentality.
These are your parents and the kids grandparents. The one thing I truly have learned in my days is that the ol' saying that life is short really is literal.
It sounds as if you are trying to have a relationship with them that is based on them being something that they simply are not. Also, how do you guys talk about them around the kids? Yours are young, but we all know they hear everything, so if you let them hear how messed up it is why in the world would they want to go much less stay longer than a few minutes?
I AM NOT saying any of their actions or statements are your fault or your wife's. I AM saying that people show you who they are...BELIEVE THEM and act accordingly. Set the proper expectations, control the visits by having an agenda. Stop going to their home and stop inviting them to yours. You guys need to be at a restaurant, a park an event of some kind. There should be an exact start time and an end time of these visits that everyone knows when they arrive. BABY STEPS!!!
BTW, you said the stepmom is working 80 hrs a week and she is 77yrs old. How much of an ass would you be if this were your life? She's probably scared as hell. Are they losing their home? Do they have collection people calling them all day and night? You can have a relationship and you owe it to everyone to fix it. Just be precise in your actions and think 3-4 steps forward in each word and action you say and take.
I think we are all measured on how we deal with the difficult people in life. ANYONE can get along with the Saints of the world we meet.
You can not end this relationship. It will mess you up, your kids up and their kids up. I don't know you personally, but you obviously are intelligent and thoughtful and care a great deal about your family. Take all your Superpowers and focus them on fixing it NOT walking away. TAKE LEAD and they will follow.This message has been edited. Last edited by: FLKev,
"It's gon' be some slow singing -n- flower bringing............ if my burglar alarm starts ringing"
|Little ray |
I wouldn't offer advice over what we can learn over the internet, but I am sorry for your problems.
It may not be Alzheimers (but, of course, it may be). Old people do get limited in their thinking, and fall into patterns more easily, and take longer to work through any mental task, even without having Alzheimers. I saw it in my own father, who was a really smart guy, and now it is happening to my mother.
The fish is mute, expressionless. The fish doesn't think because the fish knows everything.
|Frangas non Flectes|
Get your poncho on.
Yes, he can. What’s gonna mess him, his kids, and their kids up more? Not having a toxic set of grandparents in the mix, or living with the damage they leave in their wake? How about he focus all his superpowers on the family he’s created and his parents follow that lead? Oh, he’s done that and they decided not to get with the program.
I dunno what you’ve lived through for family problems, but I’ve dealt with a situation very similar to the OP’s, and in the end, my only recourse was to shut my father out. You know what? I didn’t do it to him, he did it to himself. He was only interested in himself, and getting drunk and stoned, and had zero interest in being a grandparent. Change some details, and the punchline here is the same: grandma’s more interested in her own shit, and to hell with the grandkids. Them NOT wanting o follow his lead is exactly the problem, or am I missing something here?
My son didn’t grow up knowing his grandfather. I felt guilty at first, but now I know he also grew up without experiencing any emotional, or physical abuse from my father. What messed him up more? What’s gonna mess up my grandkids more? Plenty of people grow up just fine without grandparents, dude.
I believe in the 25th amendment.
Wow, PASig, I'm really sorry for this very difficult situation. My mother loved my wife like a daughter, and my mother-in-law never said anything ill of me that I ever heard of. My wife and I are now the age of your parents; we take care of our 2 granddaughters 1/2 day 3 times a week, our daughter is very grateful for the help because she has something like chronic fatigue. Our daughter can be a little touchy at times, but we overlook it; really she tries very hard to be a great mom and mostly is very successful at it, just needs help from her husband and us. The granddaughters are just 4 and 20 months, so still love coming to our house and going places with us.
Reading about your situation makes me feel how really blessed we are.
I won't comment on your Mother's Day-care situation because we don't know much about it; but it doesn't sound as if she is going to change her mind about that obsession.
We feel that we have only a few years that our grandchildren will feel really close to us, so everything else is being put on the back burner.
Naturally, we would be devastated if told we couldn't see our granddaughters again. We have good friends who have kids who have done that, and it breaks their hearts.
“We seem to be getting closer and closer to a situation where nobody is responsible for what they did but we are all responsible for what somebody else did.”--Thomas Sowell
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