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AIBU to think that I can stay in touch with my (Step) DIL?

(17 Posts)
SydnayGreen Fri 01-Mar-19 12:43:09

Just need some thoughts really about hoping to maintain contact with my SDIL.

My D step Son (DSS) has separated from his DW ( my step daughter in law SDIL ).

They married very quickly, no sex before marriage and had a honeymoon DD. They didn't know each other well enough or have enough time as a couple, it has all been too much too soon. Professional jobs ( new job for him), new area (for him), new friends (for him) new house, new baby; it hasn't worked out, they make each other unhappy.
In addition they both have some MH issues which lessens their resilience and makes for an unwillingness to accept responsibility for the issues they are having.

During the marriage I became a friend to my SDIL. She would often confide in me about her worries about sex; lack of sex between them has been an issue, she feels dirty and inexperienced. She would also ask advice about her marriage, about cooking, about work. DSS has behaved badly. They have parted before now but then returned to each other.

Contact between her and I lessened when she shared advice i had given her with my DSS. He didn't like what I had said, fair enough I had thought I was supporting her and didn't expect her to share it with him.
We are friendly when we meet but no personal advice to SDIL anymore.

Now they are separated I don't know what to do about contacting her.
AIBU to try and maintain contact?
I don't want to get involved in anything to do with their separation, she can be quite volatile and often 'bars' family members from seeing their DD. I do however remember when my own marriage ended that I felt abandoned by my EXH family. I don't want her to think I don't care about her or her DD.

If I do contact her, it would be via messenger. What do I say? I was thinking of maintaining a middle ground. ' Hope you and DD are ok, I know this is a difficult time for you all' - does that sound trite?

I also don't feel I want to say 'I'm here if you need me' because I'm not, given that she doesn't keep my confidence.

Some words of wisdom would be great!

BusySnipingOnCallOfDuty Fri 01-Mar-19 14:04:20

Personally I would give it a go at staying in touch. I'm still in touch with some of my exh's family, its nice.

Spiderbanana Fri 01-Mar-19 14:06:50

I think you should stay in touch. If I am reading it right, she is the mother of your GD. If you and she have a relationship, it means your relationship with your GD will be protected if things get rough between her and your son.

Just try and steer clear of talking to them about each other

SydnayGreen Fri 01-Mar-19 16:03:13

Thanks both for your advice.

Yes, I think it would be great to maintain contact.

At the minute SDIL isn't allowing us/ DS or his mum to see GD. Perhaps being in touch will help.

So, a short message as above? 'I know that times are tough, but hope that you and DD are ok?' Suppose she can only ignore me if she doesn't want me to contact her.

EmeraldShamrock Fri 01-Mar-19 16:06:59

Even if not to maintain contact it would be nice for you to send her a message.
I bet your a really nice lady.

Rtmhwales Fri 01-Mar-19 16:11:02

What do you mean she isn't allowing your DSS to see his DD? He needs to start the ball rolling on court ordered access if that's the case.

SydnayGreen Fri 01-Mar-19 17:30:21

Thanks RTM, yes he will seek legal advice re contact, we know that this shouldn't continue, GD is the important one here and needs to see her dad. However, SDIL is saying that he is unfit to see their DD. Not true, but she will be hurting and is using access as control.

We would offer to have GD here, for DSS to see her, but I don't think that will happen just yet.

I need to pluck up the courage to send that message, what an awful situation to be in. I really want to be impartial and show I care.

SydnayGreen Fri 01-Mar-19 18:49:35

Message sent, no response at the moment. I will wait.

Worried about them all.

Forgot to say I have name changed for this. I didn't want this thread connecting with my usual posts!

SydnayGreen Thu 07-Mar-19 20:33:45

Well, I don't think that went very well! Maybe it did, small steps and although I waited nearly a week for a reply at least I wasn't ignored.

So to my ' know that things are difficult, thinking of you and DGD' I received a response blaming DSS, (expected and fair enough, I didn't respond to the blame game as I don't want to be involved), a 'DD is much more settled without her dad' and a 'wishing you well for the future'.

Is that it? Does that seem like final contact?

stopfuckingshoutingatme Thu 07-Mar-19 20:35:49

Maybe send a
Message to to let her know you are thinking of her and wishing her well ? Leave the door open

stopfuckingshoutingatme Thu 07-Mar-19 20:37:04

Yes . She doesn’t seem to want contact
Maybe text her once a
Month to keep conscience clear and maintain a link

But might be dead in water . You tried !

SydnayGreen Thu 07-Mar-19 20:38:24

I had asked about DGD, again quite light, about a favourite tv programme and added 'it will be good to see her'. That too was ignored.

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Thu 07-Mar-19 20:40:22

I also don't feel I want to say 'I'm here if you need me' because I'm not, given that she doesn't keep my confidence.

Umm, first loyalties are always to your partner, and a good friend listens and does not offer opinions - as you have found out, the proverbial messenger gets shot when a couple reconciles.

So you are talking about your DSS and DSSIL - what does your partner think?

Charlieandthechocolatecake Fri 08-Mar-19 10:02:26

I think you should stay in touch.

She has confided in you and with MH issues you sound like a wonderful person for her to have a relationship with xxx

SydnayGreen Fri 08-Mar-19 20:22:32

Thanks charlie, I am trying.

plainspeaking yes I should have learnt from my own marriage breakdown that loyalties are divided and that other people take longer to move on. My parents still can't forgive my EXH, yet I have moved on!

My own partner is fully supportive of my contact with step DIL. He has shared the messages and is keen to keep contact open. We wanted SDIL to know that we are supportive of their separation. It is the right thing thing for all concerned.

Although we would like to maintain a relationship with our DGD, we know the priority is contact with her dad and will either help to facilitate that ( he is renting a room) or leave it if we need to.

gentlegiraffe Fri 08-Mar-19 20:39:19

I have nothing to add but wanted to say you sound so lovely Opthanks

SydnayGreen Wed 13-Mar-19 20:09:20

Thanks Gentle.

I've tried, I have sent another couple of messages. SDIL has responded but mainly to relay more about DSS and his poor behaviour.

I haven't discussed him but widened the conversation to give my own experiences or talked more generally about MH issues and seeking counseling. (Him and her).

No pressure at all for them to get back together.

Of course I have asked about our DGD. We are all missing her.

It isn't going well though. No response to 'grandad says to tell DGD that he will see her at the concert' ( we were planning a trip).

We are now 'unfriended' on fb. Sad! We won't even see any photos.

DSS is having a difficult time but legal advice booked.

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