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To not even consider talking to my mum until she apologises?

(104 Posts)
wolfe1 Wed 13-Aug-14 14:55:29

My mother is a fantastic grandparent to my two biological children (who are 4 and nearly 1) - spoils them rotten, plays with them, loves spending time with them ect. However, she is not so good with either DH's son(15) or the two boys we adopted a few years ago (14 and 16). She has never been outwardly rude or made it clear they are not family (until this) but spends far less on gifts for them ect.

She lives in a different country so we don't actually see her that often but she was/is visiting at the moment and, as usual, is staying at our house. She bought loads of gifts for the younger boys but nothing for the older 3 stating they are too old for presents. She was playing with my 4yo yesterday and they were using the gifts she bought (which included a couple of sets of lego) me and DH were in the room but not actively playing with them. My 4yo said to her something along the lines of 'you could buy (older 3 DS's names) lego like you did me because they still play with it' and my mother response was 'well I'm not going to get them a present, they aren't my grandsons, not like you and (name of 1yo)' to which my son said 'well they are my brothers so how come they aren't your grandons?' and before either me or DH could step in she said 'they aren't your proper brothers, not like (name of 1yo)'

My DH went mad and told her to leave and she did. Despite a talk from my DH 4yo DS is still quite upset and confused and even asked the 14 if they were 'real' brothers yesterday because 'nanna said they weren't'. All the older boys have been fab big brothers to DS and it must of been horrible for my 14yo to hear him say that. I'm fuming at my mother and have told her not to bother contacting me unless it is an apology.

I got a call from my sister this morning saying i was being ridiculous and over reacting and the technically they were not brothers and the 4yo will have to learn this one day eventually. My mother is apparently upset because she's had to stay in a hotel and isn't seeing her grandchildren.

Anyway, I'm genuinely not sure if I'm being unreasonable about this or not. On the one hand i think my mother was totally in the wrong to say that, but on the other hand, maybe I am being slightly over emotional. I know that one day it will need explaining to my 4yo but he can't really understand the ins and outs of it the minuet and sees all of them as his big brothers, and statement like that do upset him (he is quite emotional).

So basically am I over reacting or not?

Agggghast Wed 13-Aug-14 14:57:59


Vitalstatistix Wed 13-Aug-14 15:00:01

No you bloody well are not.
She's going to hurt all your kids unless you stop her.
This is the sort of thing that can actually drive wedges between siblings. They need a good relationship with each other more than the chosen few need a good relationship with her!
And your sister has just shown you she doesnt see all your kids as your real children either.

ohfourfoxache Wed 13-Aug-14 15:01:02

Yanbu at all shock

What a bloody horrible thing to say

Even if she does apologise I'm not sure I'd want to talk to her after that

GoringBit Wed 13-Aug-14 15:01:13

Awful, YADNBU. She should treat them all equally.

LetsFaceTheMusicAndDance Wed 13-Aug-14 15:01:39

I have to say I'd be fucking livid for several reasons.

I think you should meet for coffee somewhere public where you can tell her how you're thinking and feeling without going off on one. She may well have different ideas from you but she doesn't have the right to do what she did.

Maybe you need to insist on an all or none rule around hiw she treats the children too.

RoaringTiger Wed 13-Aug-14 15:01:41

Not over reacting at all, what she said was rude and completely uncalled for.

MrsHathaway Wed 13-Aug-14 15:01:46

Legally they are brothers. Full stop.

Sour old bitch can FTFO.

LetsFaceTheMusicAndDance Wed 13-Aug-14 15:03:25

And once you've told her the rules, police them rigorously. This is incredibly damaging to children.

hellsbellsmelons Wed 13-Aug-14 15:03:26

Absolutely not.
That is outrageous of your mother to speak like about your children.
I wouldn't bother with her again either.
Well done your DH kicking her out.
And it's her own stupid fault she has to stay in a hotel.
How fucking rude!
This would insense me no end.

Petitgrain Wed 13-Aug-14 15:06:25

As an adoptee myself, this has me near to tears. Your children ARE siblings. Your younger two are lucky enough to have two lovely older brothers, who incidentally you adopted, and a lovely step-brother (have I got that right?). Your mother's point of view is horrible and wrong. For your adopted children's sake, please don't ever let them know how she feels, it would be crushing.

Petitgrain Wed 13-Aug-14 15:07:51

Haha I think MrsHathaway said it better!

ADHDNoodles Wed 13-Aug-14 15:08:16

You adopted them, they are your real children, and they are real brothers. The end.

If grandma refuses to see that, she should be kept away. Her attitude is disgusting. Your older children are most likely internally struggling with this as it is, they don't need her to add to that pain.

DH is adopted and I have friends that are adopted and they get upset when people ask them if they know who their real parents are. Yes, they do. It's the ones that raised them. Not that hard.

The most you need to explain to your 4 year old is that blood isn't what makes a family. You could even explain it now, some family you get to pick, some are born to you. Simple.

Your poor kids. All of them. What you mother did was really rotten. sad

HatieKokpins Wed 13-Aug-14 15:08:34

Your mother has been awful. Whilst she's right that they'll have to find out sooner or later, it is NOT up to her to decide when that time is, and she has WAY overstepped. Your poor boy. Tell your sister to stay out of it, too.

Hereward1332 Wed 13-Aug-14 15:09:33

Her words weren't exactly pleasant or helpful, but I'm afraid that throwing her out of the house when she lives abroad does sound like a knee jerk reaction that, if you had had time to think, might better have been expressed differently. I don't think you need to apologise - what she said was out of order- but in a perfect world telling her that all DC are given equal love and affection might have been the way forwards.

kentishgirl Wed 13-Aug-14 15:09:48


At some point you probably will explain to the younger ones how your family came about. That's for you as parents, not for grandma to stick her oar in and do it very insensitively.

And it horrible that she doesn't see the older boys as real relatives.

DartmoorDoughnut Wed 13-Aug-14 15:10:30

YANBU and your mother is a bitch

Hereward1332 Wed 13-Aug-14 15:10:34

She bshould of course treat them all equally.

VitoCorleone Wed 13-Aug-14 15:11:18

That's horrible OP

Tiptops Wed 13-Aug-14 15:11:56


That is appalling. You are definitely NOT being unreasonable. I'm not sure just an apology will cut it, she needs to totally change the way she views your older children and treat them equally with no exceptions.

Davsmum Wed 13-Aug-14 15:12:40

YANBU to be upset at what your mother said, however, some people are very blunt and truthful and do not realise that they are being hurtful.

Does your mother like your DH? is there conflict there? Is she usually so blunt and tactless - or is it this one issue?
In some weird way it could be her way of reminding your DS that he and his younger sibling are very special to her - I think it is natural she may feel closer to them - although again - not acceptable for her to say what she did.

It does not excuse what she said to your DS - but instead of getting angry, surely it would be better to have taken your mother aside and pointed out that you are angry about what she did and why?

Coolas Wed 13-Aug-14 15:13:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

luckygirl322 Wed 13-Aug-14 15:17:53

I was adopted at four weeks old, after my parents raised three adult bio children. One grandmother accepted me with open heart and open arms. The other did not-I was even cut out of the will, because I wasn't a 'real' family member. I was adopted.

Please. Put a stop to this now.

Thumbwitch Wed 13-Aug-14 15:18:27

You absolutely are NOT being unreasonable, nor over-reacting, nor anything wrong at all. Your mother was horrible to say that, and to think that - and your sister is no better by the sounds of it.

I'm so sad for your older boys - and for the little ones too, because they've had their world view rocked by this nasty attitude, and they may lose contact with their grandmother because of it.

I wouldn't actually accept an apology over this - not just a verbal one, anyway - it would be "treat them all the same or fuck off!"

My sister's oldest child is not hers by birth but she has always been treated as the oldest grandchild by my parents, and is my oldest niece (not all the people in our family have accepted her as such but tough! That's who she is). She gets treated exactly the same, and why not?! That's the way it should be and your mother (and other family) needs to learn that or, sorry to say it again, she should fuck off.

diddl Wed 13-Aug-14 15:18:27

She's not a good GM as she told a 4yr that his brothers aren't his brothers!

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