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Alienated Grandparents
Old 09-08-2019, 05:12 PM   #1
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Alienated Grandparents

Not sure where to post this concern. Wife and I both 69 are retired. Retirement life is a dream except for one problem, grandchildren alientation. Son and daughter in law live 5 minutes from our house. Son encourgaed us to move close by so we could enjoy and help with the two granddaughters.Everything was good around Christmas 2018. We bought a bicycle for six year old grandaughter. Daughter in law was furious that we bought her a bicycle.


Had a meeting with son and daughter in law in April with wife and I. Daughter in law blasted my wife for supposedly something she said at wedding fourteen years ago and blasted us for buying six year old granddaughter.


No visitiation with grand kids since Christmas. Do you all know of any support groups for alienated grandparents? I found a group,Alienated grandparents anyonymous, on the internet.


Any help or suggestions would be apprreciated.
Thanks!
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Old 09-08-2019, 05:25 PM   #2
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Being a grandparent who moved close to grandkids, this is something I’m always a bit concerned about. I feel very bad for you. I’m not sure about support groups, but if it were me, I’d get started on planing my next move. Not sure where you live, but I wouldn’t stay in my current location were it not for the proximity to DD and grandkids.

Many times in situations like this, there is nothing you can do. Counseling will tell you that you can only control the things you do, not what others do. In that sense, pain as I suspect it will be, you need to get back to a drawing board and chart out the rest of your life which very sadly appears will be with limited interaction if any with the grandkids. I’m sorry for you. Hopefully there will be a change of heart soon but you must do something productive in the meantime.
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Old 09-08-2019, 05:37 PM   #3
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Agree with Jerry1. DIL response tells me that your son may have problems in his marriage so try to maintain your relationship with him without complicating his life. In the meantime build your own social circle and know that you are not the only folks with problematic relatives.

Do you have other grandchildren? If so focus on them but be mindful that the estrangement is not this child's fault.
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Old 09-08-2019, 05:38 PM   #4
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My guess is you are here in KY (Go Cats!). There is a symposium in Frankfort next month for this https://www.familyaccessfightingforc...symposium.html.

There's also a Facebook page for alienated grandparents. That might give you some other ideas for a place to start. https://www.facebook.com/Alienated-G...4569907596743/

My heart goes out to you. Shame on your son for allowing this to happen. I understand the "support your spouse" theory, but not when it is to the detriment of the children. Grandparents are so very important to children. I hope you find some way to work this out for everyone's benefit.
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Old 09-08-2019, 05:39 PM   #5
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Why didn't they like your buying one girl a bike? That just seems odd. There has to be more to the story.

Clearly, it's the parents you are alienated from. For whatever, probably unjust reasons, they see something so wrong with their relationship with you, that they are willing to deprive their children of grandparents. That's pretty serious deprivation.

Your DIL doesn't like you, OK; and she sure can hold a grudge (14 years!), which is not attractive. Still, you're her husband's parents, and he is keeping your grandkids from you just as much as she is. Is this just because his wife doesn't like you, or is there more to it?

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Originally Posted by ukwildcat View Post
Not sure where to post this concern. Wife and I both 69 are retired. Retirement life is a dream except for one problem, grandchildren alientation. Son and daughter in law live 5 minutes from our house. Son encourgaed us to move close by so we could enjoy and help with the two granddaughters.Everything was good around Christmas 2018. We bought a bicycle for six year old grandaughter. Daughter in law was furious that we bought her a bicycle.


Had a meeting with son and daughter in law in April with wife and I. Daughter in law blasted my wife for supposedly something she said at wedding fourteen years ago and blasted us for buying six year old granddaughter.


No visitiation with grand kids since Christmas. Do you all know of any support groups for alienated grandparents? I found a group,Alienated grandparents anyonymous, on the internet.


Any help or suggestions would be apprreciated.
Thanks!
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Old 09-08-2019, 05:41 PM   #6
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Be sure to adjust your will and beneficiaries. The marriage won't last. Bide your time.
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Old 09-08-2019, 05:48 PM   #7
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For starters, why not just sit down with your son only and find just what the heck is going on. Get all the details.
Then you can probably make an informed decision about going forward.
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Old 09-08-2019, 05:53 PM   #8
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Sounds like DIL has mental problems. Or is she afraid that daughter will fall off bike and die? Some people are paranoid, which is a mental problem.
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Old 09-08-2019, 05:57 PM   #9
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In your shoes I'd keep trying, it's been less than a year so maybe this can be repaired? It's going to take some introspection though. And eating crow, even if you don't see what you'd be eating for.

Before all this, did you like DIL? Were you close at all? Guarantee you it's not just a comment at the wedding, unless she's a psycho. Probably a lot of little things. Things you had no idea were irking her. Are you friendly with her parents? All things to examine.

What else was said at this meeting you had? Did your son say you won't be seeing your g-kids or did they just leave cold and ghost you? Have you tried to talk directly with your son since then?

As far as the bike, that's a pretty important gift for a 6 year old, usually better to have aligned with the parents first for anything significant (maybe they had a bike planned for her birthday, or have some aversion to bikes, or something) - if this ends up getting worked out, it's a good idea to ask for ideas of what to get, and just go off the list.

Best of luck in finding some way to make this work.
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Old 09-08-2019, 06:15 PM   #10
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Thanks to all responders. Son is having one on one meeting with professional counselor wife and I met with. Counselor agreed to be a mediator for next meeting with son and daughter in law.
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Old 09-08-2019, 06:20 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by ukwildcat View Post
Thanks to all responders. Son is having one on one meeting with professional counselor wife and I met with. Counselor agreed to be a mediator for next meeting with son and daughter in law.
A great first step to working this out. Hopefully the counselor can provide some insight and a solution to this problem.
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Old 09-08-2019, 07:01 PM   #12
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I agree with Aerides above, I'd be pissed if my parents or parents in law bought my kids their first bike as well. That is totally robbing the parents from a very special purchase in a childs life. Now if it wasn't the first bike then I would say she is acting inappropriately.
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Old 09-08-2019, 07:02 PM   #13
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OP, I hope that you and DW are able to find a way forward and get some resolve with your son and DIL.

Taking what you have described at face value, your DIL getting that upset with you and DW over the purchase of a bike for your 6 year-old grandchild is unreasonable - regardless of whether the gift is considered to be one of relative importance. There are far more mature and less destructive means to resolve a conflict like the one you have described short of her scorched earth approach.

Refusing you and your DW visitation of your grandchildren is not only cruel and petty, but also sets a very poor example for her child.
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Old 09-08-2019, 07:05 PM   #14
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I agree with Aerides above, I'd be pissed if my parents or parents in law bought my kids their first bike as well. That is totally robbing the parents from a very special purchase in a childs life. Now if it wasn't the first bike then I would say she is acting inappropriately.
I’ve had this exact issue with DD. It is always best to coordinate gift purchasing with the parents. Learned the hard way, but the result was not quite as bad as OP.
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Old 09-08-2019, 07:08 PM   #15
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I agree with Aerides above, I'd be pissed if my parents or parents in law bought my kids their first bike as well. That is totally robbing the parents from a very special purchase in a childs life. Now if it wasn't the first bike then I would say she is acting inappropriately.
And let's say that the grandparents did in fact purchase a first bike for their grandchild without prior parental knowledge - is alienating the child from his/her grandparents an appropriate response?

We are talking about a bicycle.
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Old 09-08-2019, 07:15 PM   #16
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Sounds as if the DIL has serious personality issues. And it sounds as if the son has not become the family leader he should be.

You're doing about all you can getting a counselor involved. Be yourself and live your lives the right way. After children have become of age, they actually need you more than you need them.

My wife was just another daughter to my parents. I've seen cases where daughter in laws were serious liabilities to well to do families, especially when there's a break up and assets are split.
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Old 09-08-2019, 07:16 PM   #17
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I don't think anyone is agreeing that a bike is grounds for alienation, just that some of us can see how that might not have been a great idea. If the relationship was already fractured, that might have just been the final straw for DIL.

It's great that the counselor will be a mediator here.
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Old 09-08-2019, 07:17 PM   #18
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It feels prurient to comment, except that you posted your situation seeking internet strangers’ comments. You said your son wanted you to move closer. Maybe you didn’t fully vet that rather large idea with her? Maybe not vetting the bike, either, broke the dam of her frustrations? Regardless, it’s good you will soon have mediated talks and maybe you could safely explore her true feelings about suddenly having her in laws living so near, as that legitimate dimension was overlooked in your post and might be overlooked entirely, by you and your son.
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Old 09-08-2019, 07:46 PM   #19
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Yeah, maybe it's the "closer" thing.

I enjoyed being 2000 miles away from my parents. And your inlaws are much worse than your own parents.
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Old 09-08-2019, 08:02 PM   #20
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Yeah, maybe it's the "closer" thing.

I enjoyed being 2000 miles away from my parents. And your inlaws are much worse than your own parents.
Actually, my in-laws were the normal family. I don't know what I would have done without them. I moved my family closer to the in-laws. The kids actually got on the school bus at our house and off the bus in the afternoon at the in-laws.
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