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Are my grandparents being too relaxed about this situation?

(19 Posts)
aubz88 Thu 03-Oct-19 09:31:33

If you have read my previous question regarding this topic then I have discovered that my paternal grandparents didn't know that I existed.

Yes, I am seeing a counsellor but things happen in between sessions and she only wants to focus on me but I also want to get a sense of if I want to bother with this new family I have found and try to get some new perspectives.

My grandparents allege that they have been in contact with my father on a weekly basis since he moved out of their family home. They said that they knew my mother's name as my father spoke to my mother on the phone but my father didn't bother to tell my grandparents about me despite having met me as a child a few times.

My mother alleges that ever time she saw my father he was drunk or high on something. My grandparents allege that my father has never been in a drug rehab center although my father phoned my mother and told her that he had been to a rehab center. My mother alleges that this is what dealing with my father feels like - it feels like everyone is lying because he is different things to different people and tells different people different things. She has friends who have had the same experience with him and yes I did see that he smoke a substance while babysitting me one time. My mother alleges that she did not prevent my father from seeing me; he simply didn't want to see me unless my mother would have sex with him.

Anyways, my grandparents found out that their son fathered a child, kept the child a secret from them, and was an absent parent and they told me that they are going to visit him and help him paint his house. They said that they are going to discuss the matter with him and that they are very sad and this is very emotional for them. They allege that they think things panned out the way they did due to the breakdown in the relationship between my parents and they don't want to pry. They allege that they trust their son, he's an honest person and he's been self-employed this entire time etc. How can you say he's honest after keeping such a secret?

I have some issues with this: 1. you find out what your son did and you want to paint his house? 2. despite the breakdown in relationship my father chose to be an absent parent. He didn't see a lawyer, he didn't exhaust all avenues, he didn't make contact with me for years on end at a time, and he didn't persistently try to build a relationship with me.

Do you think they are in denial (having trouble coming to terms with this?) about their son's behaviour or trying to make excuses for him?

TottieandMarchpane Thu 03-Oct-19 09:41:39


Some people are very conflict avoidant.

Many, many people express their unconditional love for their adult children as unconditional approval.

He’s their son and you, despite being their DGD, are still a relative stranger to them, so they are being rather old school and stiff and choosing not to criticise him to you in any way. Their loyalty is with him.

He sounds like a tricky character. Appeasing and excusing him may have become a way of life to them. Possibly they’re even slightly scared or in awe of him.

Do they have other DC? Or are all their parental eggs in one basket, as it were?

Can you try to build a relationship with them that’s independent of him and get to know them without discussing him? That might help as it’s possible they currently feel you are critical of them and so are defensive.

This is probably going to be slow going. Sorry flowers

aubz88 Thu 03-Oct-19 09:47:21

They have 5 other children.

I guess another issue is that I don't necessarily want to have a relationship with my father. But they are controlling the process. I have 2 half-siblings that I want to get in touch with and other relatives but I have to go through these grandparents to get to them first so I have to jump through their hoops. I don't want to.

I guess I can understand why my father turned out the way he did if they have such a parenting style.

FlaviaAlbia Thu 03-Oct-19 09:53:36

Your mum has the measure of him and it sounds like your grandparents want to pin the blame for his inadequacy on anyone except themselves and him.

As hard as it is, don't expect any better from him or them.

mankyfourthtoe Thu 03-Oct-19 09:57:42

He sounds like a waste of space (sorry) and they've probably made excuses for him his whole life. There'll be a great reason why he couldn't cope with a child

aubz88 Thu 03-Oct-19 10:00:43

Yeah, his ex-wife won't let him see my half-sister anymore but they describe her as 'crazy' and 'controlling'. I don't know her but there's probably a good reason for it given his track record. Maybe I could try to find the ex-wife.

My grandparents have been very warm and welcoming towards me so it's hard to tell them what I think. I guess only time will tell. At least I live 8, 000 km away.

Aderyn19 Thu 03-Oct-19 10:02:42

If you know who your half siblings are, then you can contact them directly. I'm sure there are ways to find them if you think that's the best approach. But it might not be such a bad idea to take your time and get to know your GPS and maybe go through them if it turns out they are decent people.
Sometimes you can do everything right as a parent and still get a child who is not a good person. They love him because he is their son, which is not unreasonable. They may also be struggling with this new information and are trying to adapt. They could be really cross with him but still love him and feel that he needs their support. As a parent it's very hard not to look after your DC even when they are wrong or have behaved badly.
I wouldn't want to see a father who had made no effort to know me or provide for me, but I would like to see gps who haven't done anything wrong.

Beautiful3 Thu 03-Oct-19 10:10:41

Because he is their son. I'm sorry this happened to you and your mother. I would just stay out of your father's hot mess and continue to enjoy your life.

madambee Thu 03-Oct-19 10:22:50

They are the parents of an addict, addicts lie and manipulate. The way they behave is perhaps the only way they could to maintain contact with him.

They could be nice people who are shocked to have found out about you. You got to go with what you want.

steppemum Thu 03-Oct-19 10:24:23

I am so sorry that you are having to deal with such a mess.
Your GP have a long relationship and history with their son.

they have just met you.

They may consider his relationship with you and with your mum to be none of their business.

To them, you are, sadly, a stranger, and by the sound sof it, you are pretty angry with your dad, their son who they love.

Their instinct will be to close ranks.
Even if they have words with their son, they are not going to ruin their relationship with him over it.

I'm sorry, sometimes you need to walk away. See if you can pursue your relationship with your half sisters away from your GP, don't use them as a route to anyone

aubz88 Thu 03-Oct-19 10:57:46

He didn't pay child maintenance either (my mum didn't follow up with that either) but he does owe us something. Maybe I can use these GPs to find out where he lives and then sue him.

aubz88 Thu 03-Oct-19 11:10:45

If that was me and I found out that my son did this I would be very angry with the son for a long time and I would distance myself from him. Who wants to associate with a deadbeat dad?

mankyfourthtoe Thu 03-Oct-19 11:28:47

He was their son for years before he became a deadbeat dad. That's how they still see him. Your story doesn't fit with the life/lies, so they won't accept it.
I think you need to work on accepting that they don't see him the same way you do, or seeing them isn't going to work for you.

aubz88 Thu 03-Oct-19 11:36:34

Maybe I can wiggle in enough to be put onto my father's will. Lol

CornishCreation Fri 04-Oct-19 15:10:22

If he chose not to be around you and not to acknowledge his responsibility for you as a child then he's made his position pretty clear, not telling his parents was just his way of pretending you didn't exist, he didn't want the burden of a child and his parents probably feel awkward that they found out something that he didn't want them to know.
As hard as it is you can't change what's happened or how people feel, you are strangers and it sounds like you're the only one reaching out. Don't let yourself get hurt, he's not worth the heartache.

aubz88 Mon 07-Oct-19 15:46:38

@CornishCreation I'm not necessarily interested in him though. I'm interested in my half-siblings. He did try to ask for my phone number when I was 18. I said no.

I think this will be awkward for all of them which is part of the reason why I want to do this. So they all know what he did.

aubz88 Wed 20-Nov-19 12:38:17

@FlaviaAlbia I found out that 3 of my father's siblings are criminals.

blablablabla123 Wed 20-Nov-19 13:43:16

It sounds to me that your newly found grandparents are trying to be loyal to their son, while being open with you that this situation has hurt them.

you find out what your son did and you want to paint his house?

Parental help isn't usually conditional on the adult child making the "correct" choices in life. Your grandparents have said they will discuss this with your father, while painting his house. That sounds ok to me.

It may be that your paternal family have a disfunctional dynamic, it also may be that they are controlling people. This is one of many possible explanations for your fathers behaviour and choice to not be in your life.

You say you want them all to know what he did. Why? What do you hope to achieve by ensuring everyone knows what he did?

If you approach this situation with the idea of revenge, it is likely to backfire on you somehow.

Stand back and observe your grandparents behaviour, they will soon show you who they really are, then you get to decide if you feel they will bring anything good to your life.

Where your half siblings are concerned, if they are adults, find a way to contact them directly, if they are under 21-25 they may not have the emotional maturity to deal with the consequences of their fathers bad choices.

Most of all, be guided by your counsellor, she likely wants to focus on you, as this situation is all about you, your needs and your perception of how this has come about. You are understandably hurting, its shit to have a shit parent, counselling is going to be the best method of coming to terms with that. Good luck, Im so sorry that this is happening to you.

aubz88 Thu 05-Dec-19 09:05:13

@blablablabla123 My half-siblings are aged 16 and 18.

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