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Telling young child about estranged grandparent

(8 Posts)
acowcalledhamish Sat 27-Feb-16 21:29:24

Hi there. I used to have a mumsnet account but abandoned it after the site hacking business so I've set up a new one. So, this is my first post sort of but I'm an avid reader. I was in two minds whether to post this in parenting or here but felt there may be more people with experience of this here.

Anyway, my DH is totally NC with his father (a chronic and mean alcoholic). He knows nothing about our lives and has never met DC. Obviously there is a long backstory to this but it's not mine to share.

My DC is now 4 and for the first time has started to ask where DH's daddy is. We're at an absolute loss with how to answer her. I can think of many things not to say and I understand that you build it up over the years as the child's understanding improves but we just don't know remotely what to say just now. I'm reluctant to say describe him as "unkind" or "bad" in case DC thinks it might happen to him/her too for bad behaviour. For context, DC has grandparents on my side but none on DH's side.

So, wise ones, how would you answer "Where's Daddy's daddy?" in this situation.

SkyWasMadeOfAmethyst Sat 27-Feb-16 21:43:04

I am NC with my mother. My DD started to ask about her a few years ago. I just told her that her Granny XXXX lives in XXXX and we don't see her but we do send gifts at birthdays or Christmas and that we aren't able to visit her right now. I was holding my breath waiting for more questions but that has satisfied her for now and on the occasions where she asks why we can't or don't visit I just explain it is an adult thing and I will tell her when she is older. Children will generally lose interest if you give them boring yet age appropriate explanations. You'd be surprised how satified he might be with a very simple answer. Good luck OP and I'm sorry for your DH. That is very sad.

Cabrinha Sat 27-Feb-16 22:07:52

I don't bother with my difficult and self absorbed parents, though I have siblings so they're lurking in the periphery.

I just told my now 7yo that they live a long way away, so I don't get to see them very often.

No drama, she has accepted that without any issue at all.

schlong Sat 27-Feb-16 22:09:47

You tell her he's a chronic and mean alcoholic. Simple as. Kids are human beans.

LucyBabs Sat 27-Feb-16 22:12:53

Human beans grin

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 27-Feb-16 22:13:50

We have a NC grandparent and just turned five year old. We say that they have a kind of illness that means they're not able to be around people (alcoholic and significant mental health issues for which they wont get help).

FellOutOfBedTwice Sat 27-Feb-16 22:17:08

My Dads parents were both AWOL- he had been brought up by his Nan and she was the woman we would go and see. My parents were open that Nanna was Dads Nanna too and not his Mum and when I asked- very young, only about 3, where my Dads real Mum and Dad were they just answered honestly that neither of them bad ever been around for my Dad and that we didn't see them. I just accepted it, children take whatever is in front of them for granted.

Chrysanthemum5 Sat 27-Feb-16 22:20:40

I've been nc with my alcoholic abusive father for 26 years. I don't think the DCs have asked about him more that a couple of times. Why they were very little I just said my dad didn't live near us now they are older I've explained that he isn't kind and I don't want unkind people around the DCs. They seem to understand

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