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Have the grandparents been supportive?

(29 Posts)
greener2 Fri 23-Nov-12 20:34:27

Just having a little rant/upset.
Both sides of the family havent really been very good at being supportive with our situation. I dont understand it. I spoke to someone yest who has just been told that her 2 year old may be autistic she said her parents had been in tears on the phone etc. Mine - well I get a "oh, yeah..." and not much else other than comments about my neice, comparing her, oh yes well she does this and that, i feel they dont believe what i am saying or see the seriousness in it! I went over to my mums when i was feeling really low which she knew and she went on and on about her holiday she had just come back from and all the nice days out she had recently i felt like screaming!

My husband told his dad and he didnt say anything either?!

coff33pot Fri 23-Nov-12 20:58:15

Dont get upset just look after you and your family. The rest will either come round eventually as for some it takes a long while to sink in or they need a diagnosis to spell it out to them first. Some dont want to know and some just dont know the words to say and feel uncomfortable to say anything at all. It varies greatly x

My parents have been great. My Dad at first was quiet as he didnt know what to say and because he had never come across autism didnt know anything about it. But he still spent time with DS regardless. My Mum went straight onto the net researching with me and didnt bat an eyelid on discussing DS with her friends. She was a rock. Now even my Dad will discuss whats going on and he even came to a school meeting for support and gave his twopennorth! Both will take DS out without a qualm but keep mobiles just incase.

My inlaws............well chalk and cheese. Havent spoke to me since xmas last and even when DS got his dxs in April didnt pick up the phone once to see how I was and havent visited DS for the last year in total but will take middle DD out on trips and buy things for her and have her for tea after school but she for some reason liases with DH not me. Thing is it doesnt hurt as I dont give a monkeys now.

greener2 Fri 23-Nov-12 21:05:54

I know, but as you say your parents have been great, your rock. Just sad mine are not sad

frizzcat Fri 23-Nov-12 21:24:38

Aaah narcissistic mum syndrome - everything is fine with my mum so long as we are talking about her shopping trips or the fact that she and dp have booked another holiday.
My dm dismisses things as he's doing great - he'll come away from all that stuff. That stuff being a dx of ASD - its like her brain just can't compute anything deeper than he's playing you up, then she gets upset that when I don't talk about my worries regarding ds. Lately I've started to be a lot more firm with her to the point where I have said that she has absolutely no idea what she's talking about because she didn't have a child with an SN. I've no idea if it's working but I refuse to upset my life by sitting and seething about stuff and so I'll continue with this line, because quite frankly I need all my energy for my dc.

greener2 Fri 23-Nov-12 21:43:54

I know, seething is the word. I dont understand it at all and feel quite resentful. I was a bit rude giving nothing back when they were going on about their holiday and then my step dad said dont worry you will be able to afford to go on holiday again one day...?!!

I love my mum to bits though and feel guilty when i feel like this but she really is rubbish at supporting me for anything yet thinks she supports me if yswim. When i was depressed before i had dd she was rubbish too. Things just dont get talked about.

I dont discuss things with them either now but feel cross about it. Other peoples parents treat them,look after them, it would be nice! My mum is coming to stop in a week and i said oh we could go out for something to eat one night if you want (thinking mother and daughter time) and i just got a reply of mm yes well we can see what we are doing. grrr.

It seems they all want the good bit of grandparents and not the nitty gritty.

p.s am looking after us though as this year its christmas day to ourselves smile

frizzcat Fri 23-Nov-12 22:19:10

Good on the Christmas front - I refuse to leave my home on Christmas day, if anyone wants to come to us, well then that's just dandy so long as they don't feel the need to invite us next year wink

It is hurtful I too am very close to my dm - and if asked she would say she is a fantastic mum. The thing is, she isn't the mum in our relationship, I am. My dm is full of drama - and if a drama is occurring then everyone must drop everything and discuss said drama. So it's only right and fair that I expect that in return - when I'm fighting with a so-called professional or am at my wits end with worry over ds. My hard line approach is I no longer play this game, I dont drop everything anymore. It's not that I don't care, I have to prioritise, my ds and dd come first and that's that. I too watch with envy when other people have these fantastically helpful parents. My mum came to help me when dd was born and either spent her time on the phone to her dp or sleeping because she was exhausted from working. She slept I hobbled around after a 2nd c-section, cooked cleaned and had twice the work because she was staying. I think that was the straw that broke the camels back really

thriftychic Sat 24-Nov-12 00:59:28

greener2 , do we have the same parents ?
i have felt exactly the same way and last week when i finally got a diagnosis for ds2 , i found myself spilling it all out , telling my mother why i felt let down by her . she was gobsmacked and put the phone down on me . couple of days later , in usual brush under the carpet style , i got a message about her upcoming wedding , which also said 'hope alls well' i nearly choked .

Walter4 Sat 24-Nov-12 07:00:25

My in,laws are great, grandad doesn't say much but , is great with my son. Mum I law is so supportive and has informed herself . My mum is good too, she worries too much though so I feel I have to be quite positive or she gets too upset for us all. They do love seeing their grandson and think he's exceptional!

My mummy " friends" ,well....that's another thread.

Walter4 Sat 24-Nov-12 07:03:42

I meant to say, before diagnosis, my in laws were not at all suportive and said I was trying to label my son and that there was nothing wrong with him! Big change now.

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 24-Nov-12 07:26:11

My parents have been relentlessly amazing, supportive and wonderful about DS for 18 years, and that was with him getting his dx at 9.
I know I'm incredibly fortunate and so are my children. There have been times when I really don't know how I would have kept going without the safe, reliable pair of hands ready to catch. Now they are both old and a bit crumbly, they are getting some payback as they have a strapping lad at their beck and call who thinks they are treasures and would do anything for them.
Inlaws are both dead, have been for a long time.

IndigoBelle Sat 24-Nov-12 07:36:06

I'm really struggling to stay in contact with my parents because of their lack of understanding and support.

They believe all 3 kids will grow out of their problems!

Or perhaps they believe I'making up their problems.

I wouldn't take this attitude from anyone else. But what do you do when it's your parents?

ArthurPewty Sat 24-Nov-12 07:40:46

My mom is supportive.

Mother in law is NOT.

Pixel Sat 24-Nov-12 16:27:36

My mum is great, there was no great discussion/tears/pity when ds was diagnosed but she is always there to babysit and loves him to bits. She just got on with it really.
My dad will make a grand gesture at Christmas with an expensive but normally pointless present which gathers dust for a couple of years and then ends up on Ebay but we rarely see him from one end of the year to the next, despite him living only 10 mins walk away. He would never take ds to the park or anything whereas my mum had him for three days and nights so dh and I could get a much-needed break. (should point out they are divorced!). Dad makes insensitive comments as well, for instance a recent discussion was my sister's 2nd foreign holiday this year (I don't begrudge her btw, she works hard and I'd rather have ds anyway) but Dad had to say to me that it was about time we sorted ourselves out and went abroad, as if we wouldn't love a holiday in the sun! You think he'd realise that enjoying our camping holidays is us making the best of things, not some kind of failing on our part.hmm
Don't have any in-laws but as dh's could be dead we don't know or care mother abandoned him and his two baby sisters when he was five we imagine she wouldn't be a particularly supportive grandmother to a disabled boy!

BeeMom Sat 24-Nov-12 17:37:33

My in-laws are remarkable - intimidated by Bee's cares, but supportive and very caring nonetheless.

My "parents" on the other hand, are hideous. My father has been estranged from the family for years, I tried to restart a relationship with him a couple of years ago, and while he seemed interested in reconnecting, as soon as he found out about Bee, he disappeared. Not just stopped contacting me, but even shut down his Facebook profile. He has contact with my sister and has met my DS once (for 5 minutes, if that) but aside from that - nothing.

My mother denies the existence of Bee, but contacts my DS. She lives in a different province, and has not even contacted us when she comes this way. She has QUITE LITERALLY been in a car outside my house and not come on the see her granddaughter. As far as I am concerned - she is not part of the family at all - Bee has no idea who she is.

Dysfunctional families - so much fun!!!

justaboutchilledout Sat 24-Nov-12 20:01:41

It's really common, unfortunately, and I also went through the "why does everyoen ELSE have lovely grandparents who care and are engaged etc"? stage.

Now we are living in NZ, both sets of inlaws are a plane flight away - I think that has made it easier in an odd way, we have still had huge amounts of drama about setting up time to phone/Skype, but better that than wrangling over visits.

I think the best thing you can do - easier said than done- is accept it, and build a life for yourself with supportive friends via support groups etc, and see if they come around in due course.

mariammma Sun 25-Nov-12 00:20:52

I just pretend that hardly anyone else gets any parent or in-law support either.

And then I can be genuinely glad for those lucky people who have truly lovely parents/ in-laws. Like I would be for someone who won the national lottery prize.

Tiggles Sun 25-Nov-12 08:55:12

I mentioned to my mum that DS1 was being assessed as we needed to get him better help at school etc. She started phoning me daily saying how it wasn't necessary as she doesn't believe in labelling. Since then on the odd occasions I see her (she lives 6hours drive away so we only go and stay once a year, and she won't stay with us as she prefers my brother's children so stays with him instead - her words) she points out the children she knows who "Really do have Aspergers". Needless to say I have never bothered to tell her that both DS1and2 are autistic as I don't see the point.

justaboutchilledout Sun 25-Nov-12 09:11:37

I find the best coping strategy is to fantasise about what a lovely granny I shall be when my children have issues with their children.

Of course they will have perfectly neurotypical children and will say "shut UP MUM he's FINE"

FreshWest Sun 25-Nov-12 11:13:45

My mum is less than useless. She doesn't show that she's bothered about having a gdd with SN but she spends no time with her. I have two nieces who are nt and I get the impression she would rather spend time with them as they're more 'fun' and she can do 'normal' things with them. She hasn't babysat for approx 18 months.
Sadly she is the only grandparent dd has as my parents are divorced and both inlaws have passed away. Thing is, if inlaws were still around I know they would be superbly supportive cos thats the kind of people they were. My mother is and always has been selfish.
It really bugs me that she can help db look after his daughters at the drop of a hat but last week my car had to go the garage and dd was home ill from school. I had no choice but to call her for help. She tried to get out of it that morning by calling to say there had been an accident on the motorway and it would be busy. I said I would have to call DH out of work and so she said reluctantly that she'd come. I found out later the accident was on the opposite carriageway. shock
I was back from the garage in 20mins and she left as soon as I got home.
She doesn't live far away but recently moved house so she is about 10 mins from db s house. Her comments on grandchildren have always been along the lines that she doesn't want to be committed to eg every Tuesday etc. BUT she does take dn to gym every week and looks after them every other Thursday.
DH and I have just gotten used to the fact that we have no help and looking after dd is up to us and nobody else. It's hard never having a break but we manage.

FreshWest Sun 25-Nov-12 11:14:34

Gosh that was quite long, seems I needed to get that out. Thanks for listening smile

MyAngelChuckles Sun 25-Nov-12 12:16:22

My Mother is of the opinion DS is perfectly fine, although she has only seen him twice in the last year.

My Dad, however, is fantastic, he is a shoulder tp cry on when I'm down, some one to rant at when I've been dealing with the professionals or had one of 'those' encounters at the shops and some one who listens when I'm trying to plan my next step. He is unfailingly patient, kind and understanding with DS while remaining firm with bounderies.

Don't know what I'd do without him, and with a DF like him I can do without dm without to much bother smile

2old2beamum Sun 25-Nov-12 12:47:12

As some of you know I have 5 with special needs who are all adopted. At first DF was hesitant but they soon sucked him in and he was brilliant.
Step mother was useless and dismissive or patronising and made sure everyone knew they were adopted (nothing wrong in our family) Mind you she never liked me shock
DH's family have been fantastic and so proud of our DC's

PolterGoose Sun 25-Nov-12 13:58:27

My mother pretends to be supportive but actually doesn't get it at all. Because her view is that all children are born as blank slates and everything is a result of nurture, hence, it is mine and dp's fault ds has difficulties... She tries hard not to actually say these things out loud but she has slipped on occasion. She clearly thinks we pander to him and he is a spoilt brat sad

Dp's parents don't know about the dx, they are very old and were both teachers in what are now special schools and with children with SNs in MS schools. MIL still refers to the 'subnormals' she used to teach angry But, dp is an only child and very much PFB and because ds is like a little clone of dp they just think ds is marvellous. And, actually, it is really quite refreshing to not have to explain ds's quirks and foibles, they just accept him as their perfect grandchild. They regularly compare him to NT children in their family and ds 'wins' on every level every time.

Spinkle Sun 25-Nov-12 14:08:49

My mother denied the problems with DS for years. It was our poor parenting. He couldn't be autistic because he didn't walk round the edges of rooms! She is a retired special needs teacher.

She sees now though and feels terrible. He is her only grandchild. She's too fragile to be of any use.

My MiL is the opposite. Complete angel. When we told her she'll said 'it's OK, we'll just love him more' she's there helping us being sensible and realistic and practical. I adore her.

My other MiL (DH's second wife) is perplexed by it. She talks endlessly about her granddaughters, who are amazing and NT and all the holidays they go on. Thanks.

Both FiLs are very kindly and just love him like a regular kid. Which is all we ask really.

Doesn't take much to be human, really. My mother's trauma about it all was pretty galling and frankly useless.

2old2beamum Sun 25-Nov-12 14:36:37

spinkle my stepmother went on ad infinitum how wonderful her grandcilnren were bugger mine including my "homegrown" and adopted DC's
Sorry you may have gathered she was an evil bitch May she R.I.P. lol

sagandswing Sun 25-Nov-12 22:11:30

The in-laws are absolute stars, all of my Ds's difficulties were highlighted by the school a few years ago (I was oblivious shock, my Ds had his quirks and there were a few times when I had some scratch my head moments smile but otherwise I always stood by my belief that everyone is different) I had a tough time handling numerous phone calls about Ds's behaviour or his work (or rather very little of it) My Dh at that time didn't really seem to take in what I was telling him because at the end of the day he was at work so why should he hmm. But after everything got too much and my Mil pointing out I had lost a lot of weight I had a small breakdown blush she went through the roof with me for not saying anything before, gave Dh a swift boot up the backside and then googled like crazy!! took me along to various support groups (when I didn't know what to do next) who pointed me towards Parent Partnership and Camhs, she did a diary, contacted the educational psychology department (without my knowledge,which I found a little bit naughty but seemed to speed things up ALOT), came to any meetings with the school or GP, and she and Fil are all set to pay for anything we may need if it should come to it because they want to help my Ds.

Now MY parents on the other hand.............My mum always comes up with a mysterious illness if you mention anything that does not concern her, believes that smacking is all a child needs to keep them in line, thinks my Ds is a marde arse because I actually take the time to acknowledge that he has thoughts and feelings because he is a human being not a peice of meat put on earth to shut up, listen, and do what he is told when he is told. Seems to get a kick out of blatantly winding my Ds up and then expects me to discipline (rather than talk to him) when he becomes rude and badly behaved but can't seem to understand when I sit her down and ask her not to do it!. As for my dad its a case of out of sight...out of mind.

Learning70 Sun 25-Nov-12 23:10:07

All the GPS seem to be coming round. I have found letting them have some hands on experience quite helpful. It's a bit easier for them to get it when they are in the firing line and not sitting on their bums, drinking coffee and tut tutting about 'my day' etc. The in laws may have embraced it a bit too well as they bollocked my next door neighbours about making a noise! My FIL called my neighbour a rude word and told him he was upsetting the autistic child! The first bit was factually correct but my child isn't diagnosed so we weren't actually planning on broadcasting it yet. Well never really but hey Ho lol. My mum is finally come round but I don't think she will ever truly get it. They are all in their 70s anyway so prob not a great practical help. Tbh as and when I do get a diagnosis, anyone still making noises about it being our fault can do one. End of.

justaboutchilledout Sun 25-Nov-12 23:11:36

Wow, what amazing inlaws you have sag.

sagandswing Mon 26-Nov-12 01:14:34

I know justabout I dread to think what kind of a state I would be in now if it wasn't for them, my Mil has been a rock but I can see she is just as upset as me that my Ds could be autistic, I just wish my Dh was the same sad.

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