Friday, August 22, 2008


And so, I rise from the dead.

I've been working. Getting Brendan settled in school. Dealing with hurt feelings. My own hurt feelings. I'm trying to figure out why some people are the way they are.

I found out through my brother-in-law that Scott's dad and stepmom had a "Grandson's Week" where they invited three of their five grandsons to spend the week with them. As you've figured out by now, our sons weren't included. I can understand not including the baby. But why not Brendan?

I sent an e-mail inviting them to attend Grandparent's Day at Brendan's school and when they declined because that's the day they're having some repairs done to their roof and Stepmom has a doctor's appointment, I told them how hurt I was that they didn't include Brendan and that they treat him like they don't love him. They've really broken my heart in a way that I have trouble expressing. The idea that grandparents who are supposed to adore their grandkids and love them absolutely unconditionally aren't able to do so, that they favor certain kids over my sweet, sensitive, bright, funny little boy because he's shy and not a rambunctious, eager child who craves their attention because they ply him with sweets really hurts, angers, and confuses me.

How dare they!

I've tried to have a relationship with them. But of course, they blame us.

Their response was that they haven't gotten to know Brendan because he's so shy and he doesn't try to talk to them when they try to interact with him.

They said the other daughters-in-law and sons just pop in whenever they're passing through. Here's the kicker. Both of Scott's brothers went to college in the town where my in-laws live. They go over for every football game in the fall. One of the brothers lives 30 minutes away. They told me that his wife leaves their kids with them while she goes to get her hair done and that's how they've gotten to know them.

I am really outraged when I think about it.

We live 2 hours away. If we're passing through it's because we're on our way somewhere and don't have time. How is it fair to compare me to my sister-in-law who goes to a salon a mile from their house because her nephew works there and she gets her hair done at a discount? And has free babysitting to boot. AAAAARRRRRGGGGGHHH!

I tried to visit them this summer and they gave me four days out of the month of July that they'd be available. On two of those days, we had out of town guests that we'd been anticipating all summer. Some of Brendan's favorite people in fact.

I tried to go the other two days, but had car trouble and couldn't get there because my car was in the shop. Of course, when I invited them to come here, they said they prefer to see the kids at their own home because kids react differently when they're at their homes and with their parents.

And they had the audacity to tell me that I misinterpreted what they meant when they asked me to leave with Brendan when they threw us out of their house.

I just don't know what to do. How do I get through to these people?

It hurts so much. I don't really care if they hate me, but how could they not love their own grandchild?

So, now you know part of why I haven't been around. I've been licking my wounds and trying to control my rage; not wanting to say anything too wrong. To fuck up by writing something I'd regret. But finding a way to express what I'm feeling. Sadly, writing about it makes me feel it even more strongly.


Kel said...

I'm sorry you're having to deal with this. People can be cruel and cold hearted and often there is no reason for us to understand. I recently went thru an incident with my oldest bio-grandparents that left me feeling hurt and angered. I tried to find the words to express what I felt without lashing out, but it was hard to do.

Some people are just mean - I'm sure Brendan has a wonderful extended family full of people who love him just the way he is and despite his blood family, this is what matters most.

Anonymous said...

I just left you a comment at Rich's. I'm really sorry that you're having to deal with this. Grandparents are supposed to be one of the easy parts of parenting.

You know, this kind of reminds me of my coworker who doesn't feel close to her grandchildren. Sometimes I want to ask her if maybe she hasn't developed the relationship she wants with them because she doesn't get along so well with her daughter-in-law and she's very critical of how her DIL does things like keep house, raise the kids, etc.

Anyway, I know that doesn't help, but I hope you can get past it. I know it's hurtful.

Just Me said...

I have to agree with Kel. it hurts so much more when it is your family and when it has to deal with your children. Actually it is their responsibility to make the effort to get to know your son because he is just a little boy, every child is not the same. I am sorry that you ahve to deal with it. I can only imagine the hurt feelings. Luckily, Brendan is not old enough to realize it yet.

Wendy said...

Wow. That is outrageous. Not sure what the solution is -- you've told them how you feel, and their response was obviously inadequate. Would it help if Scott talked to them?

I'm really sorry you have to deal with this. It sucks.

Troy said...

Dawn, I'm sorry that you're having to go through this. I can't begin to understand why they would act this way towards you and Brendan.

How about if I pray for them to catch a clue?


PS - Thanks for the comment on my blog. At least someone wrote on it, certainly not me lately. :)

Tana said...

Of course we all want our kids to have loving, rewarding relationship with their grandparents, and it hurts like nothing else can when it doesn't happen. The only thing we can do is teach our children to honor what is honorable in their grandparents, and to realize that if their grandparents don't do their part in forming that relationship it is not the child's fault. Instead, send cards on Grandparents' day, visit as you normally would at holidays, and fill your child's life with people who do love him willingly and appreciate him. The grandparents are really missing out on this one.

Rich | Championable said...

Man. I SO wish I could say something unbelievably insightful and useful. But all I CAN say is that I feel for you. That part of the serenity prayer – accept the things I cannot change – can be a real, giant, pain in the ass.

All good things, amigo.

rennratt said...

I will totally adopt you, Scott and the boys.

I'm not quite old enough to be a grandmother (not really...), but I'm willing to serve as a long lost aunt.

I'm so sorry that you and your kids have to deal with this. Your poor husband must be horrified by the actions of his parents.

Naturi Beauty said...

I agree with what @Tana said. Growing up, my mother had similar experiences and did the same thing for me. She made sure that every holiday, I sent cards and she did her part to inform them of what I was doing and how I was progressing and made sure that I called. However, as I got older I began to see and understand with my own eyes what was going on. It doesn't feel the best, but you realize that people (including your family) have their imperfections and it's not a reflection on you, it's their own behavior and they have to own it and you have to decide to walk in your light and be above the hurt. I know it feels bad and I do hope that by the time I've posted this comment (considering it's 2 years later lol) that things have changed. But if not, that's okay too, because your son will know what love is simply for the example that you and the hubs and the community that you've created have shown him.