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Grandparents have dumped my son in favour of new grandchild

(188 Posts)
CL240 Fri 26-Apr-19 13:49:56

Hi all,

First ever post here so go easy on me!! Apologies if I have posted in wrong area. I'll try not to make this an essay. Just wanted some advice on next course of action.

So my husband & I have been together 15 years & we have a 3 yr old boy. We moved to the same town as PIL's to be nearer when we started a family. Up til December, they have been very involved in DS's life & had him every Monday & then he went to nursery the other 4 days as we both work. They were more than happy to do it & we did not force the issue as we never wanted him to be a burden.

Anyhow, they have a daughter who is 2 yrs younger than OH. She became pregnant & was due end of Jan. She has always been a bit of a Mummy's girl & they are close but no issue with that at all as I get mums and daughters often have a special bond & I am the DIL. I hasten to add I have always involved her & treated her like my own Mum.

Anyway she said in January, she didn't want to commit to having our son on Mondays as she wanted to be available for the daughter if needed.
We just swallowed it & said fine fair enough no problem. This then carried on into Feb way after the baby had been born & every Monday she kept letting us down at the last minute with varying excuses. She actually went completely NC with us & DS for 7 weeks in this time & didn't so much as pop over for a cuppa. Just nothing.

More often than not, the nursery couldn't take him at last minute meaning OH & I have been using a lot of annual leave to cover. Her main excuse is that she is paranoid that our son might have germs & she doesn't want to get sick if she is seeing the other baby girl. Utterly bizarre.

Anyway, we decided enough was enough & got our son booked in full time wef June. There was no point doing it earlier as we are on hol in May & with bank holidays there would only be 1 Monday in May to cover.

We said we don't want DS to be a burden (in a nice way) so we have now arranged full time nursery. Could you please however do 2 more Mondays - 29 Apr & 20 May that's it. She said she would.

My OH then gets a text today saying sorry I can't have DS on Monday. No reason given. Nursery can't have him so I've got to take another day off. At this point, I am raging (!) but call the nursery & ensure 20 May booked in with them as she will inevitably let us down again for that one.

So as at now, she is not having him any more. Me & OH both agree this for the best as MIL being so flaky. However, when I text her to say we have made alternative arrangements for 20 MAy as we can tell you dont want to have him any more, she replied with a thumbs up!!

No apology, no sorry to mess you about for 4 months continually nothing.

If she had just said pre new baby, I can't commit to having him any more, fine, but she hasn't she's just let us down at every opportunity.

In addition to that, she is keeping our DS away from his new cousin as she doesn't want him near her. I find this quite unnerving TBH & when I met the baby for the first time last week, she insisted on having our son. This is the only time she has insisted on it as she is clearly desperate to keep him away from her. I've no idea if this is some kind of germ thing or what, but her behaviour is getting increasingly erratic & I'm about to blow my lid.

On top of all that, she had secretly decided to sell the house & move to the town where the daughter lives (65 miles away). Not only did the daughter & SIL know, his parents knew & his mother let the cat out of the bag at the baby shower. MIL then gestured her to sssshhh as she hadn't told us at that point. At the time, I thought the conversation was very odd.

They then told us 3 weeks after it had gone on the market they were selling up to be near the daughter. To say I'm gutted is an understatement & I've shed a lot of tears over this. They've completely abandoned both us & DS & I never, ever expected this from them.

Anyone experienced this & what advice can you give? Seriously considering going NC now. Just to reiterate, I dont care about the Mondays, we can afford FT childcare it was more about them being part of DS's life. They've just dropped him, almost like a switch has been flicked & I am disgusted, angry, bitter, upset & all those things.


MitziK Fri 26-Apr-19 14:29:03

One person I knew who was like that actually admitted later that they were terrified that the eldest's child would attack the baby, as the eldest had done repeatedly when their sibling was small (and to an extent, throughout childhood).

Obviously, it's all dependent upon the perspective of the person you ask, but were there issues between your DH and his sister - it sounds as though there might have been?

lmusic87 Fri 26-Apr-19 14:29:12

Ouch, no wonder you feel hurt.

I agree, very sneaky.

Jellybeansincognito Fri 26-Apr-19 14:29:21

‘she insisted and we couldn’t say no’ - he’s your son, if you say no that means no. You don’t have to pander to her requests and you can’t blame her for that one.

Everything else, what planet is she on? Your poor little boy!

wizzywig Fri 26-Apr-19 14:29:37

It sounds very hurtful. Itll get easier when you start accepting the situation. They are the ones with the problem, not you. We too have been dumped when the sil had her babys.

kbPOW Fri 26-Apr-19 14:29:53

That's terrible behaviour. No wonder you're shocked. Please keep in mind that there is no harm to your son here - on the contrary and as others have said, it's much better to know this now while he's so young. The hurt is to you (such a horrible feeling when your child is rejected) and to your husband, who seems to be completely in denial. I would guess that your SIL is the golden child and your H is the scapegoat and he's used to sucking up poor treatment. I would take a giant step back and make zero effort to contact them and see what happens
I'm guessing the challenge will be to get your husband on board with this.

WeirdPatient Fri 26-Apr-19 14:30:03

I think you need to let your DH take the lead on this one and decide what he wants to do. Don't go out of your way to facilitate him or them. It has to be his choice. Don't contact them and see what happens.

CL240 Fri 26-Apr-19 14:30:44

diddl - No SIL won't want FT childcare. She has organised a childminder already.

I should also had my husband had quite a bad nervous breakdown in 2016 & was in a really bad way after we had our son, so it would be nice for her to think about him in the decision to move but she isn't. She has sadly always favoured the daughter & doesn't really hide it. I just hoped it wouldn't manifest in the grandchildren but sadly it has.

absolutelyknackeredcow Fri 26-Apr-19 14:31:29

This is horrendous and I really feel for you OP. Would be definitely asking what are these 'nanny hang ups'.
My in-laws - who frankly are not the easiest of people- have always treated their grandchildren from my husband and his sister equally.
I think their favourite thing now is to watch them play as a gang. Gives them a huge amount of pleasure

EvaHarknessRose Fri 26-Apr-19 14:32:31

She sounds like she has some kind of worry about the baby getting contaminated - OCD isn't rational and it doesn't mean she doesn't love your son. DH should talk to his sis about whether Mum is unwell.

However she is being v unreasonable to you.

ReganSomerset Fri 26-Apr-19 14:33:24

Made it to the end. Your MIL is being totally out of order, but let your DH see that in his own time or you'll end up the bad guy. Just try and be as supportive as you can, particularly for your little boy.

CL240 Fri 26-Apr-19 14:33:27

MitziK - no. OH & SIL get on well & are reasonably close. OH is like a Buddha one of the most chilled people I know!

Clutterbugsmum Fri 26-Apr-19 14:34:25

I'm sorry this has happen, but I think the best thing you can so is sort your life around what you can guarantee what you can control.

You done the right thing by getting you DS in to nursery and if MIL decides that she want's to baby sit, keep it simple that he not available. Don't get into an argument about it, DS is now at nursery FT.

Leave any contact down to your DH, it's his family.

Starlive23 Fri 26-Apr-19 14:34:36

God OP I'm gobsmacked! No wonder you feel abandoned. I've got no advice sadly but I'd be beyond livid if I were you.

There is something odd going on with the germs etc too, not sure if it's her or the daughter but someone seems to have a real phobia.

I suppose you have managed to sort the situation out in practical terms,but id be pissed off and hurt to say the least.

WeepingWillowWeepingWino Fri 26-Apr-19 14:34:43

well - 2 things.

Why is you wanting to be near them good, but MIL wanting to be near her own DD bad? You can't have expected that MIL would have stayed put just because you moved?

And 'Nanny's silly hangups' suggests that perhaps there is some medical issue with your SIL that you don't know about that has made her more fearful?

Out of interest, where are your parents in all this?

Starlive23 Fri 26-Apr-19 14:35:50

@AfterLaughter ...Thunder cunt is my new favourite phrase!

Innernutshell Fri 26-Apr-19 14:36:01

Such a strange way for your MIL to behave op especially when you are obviously thoughtful and understanding.

It makes me wonder if her behaviour is connected to something that she thought had happened in the past. ie when your DH and SIL were children.

Is there a same age gap as there is between your DS and the new baby?

ElsieMc Fri 26-Apr-19 14:37:58

Oh dear op. My MIL continually played people off against each other and when I had dd, she made an enormous fuss. She was often unkind to me and it was sometimes hard to let her have dd by herself. I was always mindful she may start to be critical of dd and lo and behold she began comparing her unfavourably with a niece's son. But I was looking in the wrong place and it was when I had my dd2 that she really cranked it up.

We never even received a card nor small gift for her. They would ask to see dd1 but not my other dd. I came to realise that I did not want the girls subjected to what I had tolerated and felt a strong urge to protect them. They even wanted to take one daughter on holiday and not the other. Our dd's came as a pair, not to be separated up on the grounds of favouritism. I knew once her own dd had children, then we would be dumped and chose not to wait around for this.

Do not let her have any influence on your life and do not let her bring you down and cause you grief. It is her loss, not yours and you are well rid. She would not bring your lovely son any happiness, believe me. There is too much emphasis upon maintaining relationships "for the sake of the children". Let your ds spend time with those you love and care for him. I assume your own parents see him. You sound a loving, caring mum and I don't know how you have been so patient in the circumstances.

goodforbrian Fri 26-Apr-19 14:38:01

Op this sounds terrible for you but in a completely selfish way I will be watching and taking notes on the advice given. I am in a very similar situation with my MIL. MIL has two sons, one she ridiculously favours... the other is my DP. We have our beautiful baby boy and the 2nd Grandchild (DH brothers baby) is due soon. Already I am seeing my son being 'dropped' so to speak. My heart is breaking as I can't bare the thought of him being subjected to a lifetime of being second best. It's hard. I am contemplating going NC. Good luck, I hope it gets better for you x

diddl Fri 26-Apr-19 14:38:29

I do think that she has gone about things in an odd way, but I'm not sure why you think she should have consulted you about the move.

bigKiteFlying Fri 26-Apr-19 14:39:02

I just hoped it wouldn't manifest in the grandchildren but sadly it has.

It's been worse with the GC in my own family - slightly there as children but DN is massively favored even by sibling. Though it was as obvious and sudden as here.

It almost seemed like a relief for everyone when we moved further away - suddenly a reason to tell everyone why we were seen much less. I also don't have to try and explain why DP can go to DN school things but never my children's - though my chidlren are mostly past that stage now anyway.

mcmooberry Fri 26-Apr-19 14:39:11

This is appalling and I totally understand why you are fuming and hurt about this. Just so awful I can't find the words. Just be glad they are moving 65 miles away so they are off your radar. You wouldn't care about yourself, it's your DS you are hurt for and no wonder!! I wouldn't be able to help myself, I would tell her what I thought about her - although sounds like you tried and she came back with "Silly Nanny hang ups". Doubt there is any getting through to her so just back off and have zero expectations of her.

Beeziekn33ze Fri 26-Apr-19 14:39:38

I wonder how MiL will cope when her daughter”s PiLs move nearer. Battle of the Nanny’s?!

CL240 Fri 26-Apr-19 14:40:11

WeepingWillowWeepingWino - MIL wanting to be near her daughter is not bad no. I didn't say that.

But to keep it secret & be the last to know when it affects us the most is extremely hurtful & could have been avoided by just being honest.

There is no medical issue with the daughter none whatsoever. I think its more MIL has gotten extremely protective of her to the point of some weird crazy paranoia. I've actually asked OH do you think your Mum is unwell because her behaviour is just getting weirder & weirder.

I also think she is consumed with jealousy at the thought of other GP's seeing the baby more than her. She never mentioned moving but as soon as she found out SIL's parents were going she had to get in there so to speak.

My parents are about 75 min away. Help when they can but both work. OH's parents are both retired so frankly have time in their lives for both grandkids.

Lavellan Fri 26-Apr-19 14:41:06

I wonder if SIL might be the one starting the germ thing and your MIL is covering for her a little bit? Just a thought with the questions over her mental wellbeing.

WeepingWillowWeepingWino Fri 26-Apr-19 14:42:13

errr - wow. Your last sentence is very telling OH's parents are both retired so frankly have time in their lives for both grandkids.. And no, MIL moving doesn't affect you the most.

Sympathy is ebbing fast...

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