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Son has told me he doesn’t want to visit the graveyard anymore

404 replies

eastmeanswestmum · 07/12/2019 17:38

More of a what should I do?
My mum died while I was pregnant and I was just 21. A few weeks later I had my little boy, every week since he was born we’ve visited the graveyard, every Christmas Day we’ve gone after we’ve opened presents.
He’s been brilliant, he openly talks about her and has always wanted to go see ‘ his granny ‘
He started reception in September, this week he asked me about Christmas Day, I said we will do the same as normal open presents and then go see granny with grandad. I was so so so shocked when he said he didn’t want to go anymore. I didn’t want to pressure him into questions so I kind of just brushed over it, were due to go tomorrow and I don’t know wether to or to leave it ?
What is the best way to approach this?
Obviously going to the graveyard gives me so much comfort- I can’t go on my own as I’m a single mum so finding someone to sit in with 2 little ones so I can go isn’t an option.
But I completely understand if it isn’t appealing for a 4 year old. But do I ask why? Do I encourage him to keep going or do I just leave it and take a break?

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

900 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
Dolorabelle · 07/12/2019 17:42

It might give you comfort, but it’s clearly not giving him any comfort.

eastmeanswestmum · 07/12/2019 17:43

@Dolorabelle yeah I can sense that now. I was just explaining why I was so shocked as he’s always asked to go

OP posts:
misspiggy19 · 07/12/2019 17:43

My mum died while I was pregnant and I was just 21. A few weeks later I had my little boy, every week since he was born we’ve visited the graveyard

So for the past 5 years you go every week? I actually YABU making him come with you every week.

Soulsista14 · 07/12/2019 17:44

I think your son has been very good by going along with this up until now. In all honesty, it must be quite depressing for him to have to go to a graveyard on Christmas Day. Do you really expect him to still do this when he’s 10/15/20, etc? Let him have the Christmas Day he wants. He’s just a kid.

eastmeanswestmum · 07/12/2019 17:44

Yeah for 5 years every Sunday we walk the dog, it’s about 5 minutes from our house.
I’m quite surprised that it seems awful, he’s always wanted to go hence why I was shocked he’s suddenly said this

OP posts:
HowDeepIsYourGlove · 07/12/2019 17:44

Weekly seems excessive Confused
I wouldn’t force him if he doesn’t want to go, as sad as it is for you... he didn’t even know her

BalsamicVin · 07/12/2019 17:45

In the nicest way possible, I think YABU

If he doesn't want to go then I wouldn't be taking him tomorrow, or unless he asked really. Although I appreciate it's a comfort

TheBigFatMermaid · 07/12/2019 17:46

I think that if a 4 year old has voiced not wanting to go then they should be listened to.

It may be difficult for you to visit, but you may have to find other ways of connecting with your Mum for a while instead.

One thing I know is that as a Grandmother of a nearly 4 year old, if I died, I would not want her upset by visiting my grave!

eastmeanswestmum · 07/12/2019 17:46

I’ve never really seen it as a depressing thing for him or me either, we talk about her positively and it’s made into fun going as he rides his bike through ( park on other side ) etc. But okay I think I’ve obviously been wrong for a few years

OP posts:
HowlsMovingBungalow · 07/12/2019 17:47

Weekly is a bit much but I understand it comforts some people, can you go when he is at school?

formerbabe · 07/12/2019 17:47

I'm sorry for your loss but whilst you might find comfort in visiting her grave, I can't imagine any four year old wanting to spend time doing this. It is quite unusual to do this with a child every week. In the nicest possible way, many children have lost grandparents but it's not really something that they need to be reminded of every week. I'm not own parents died before both my DC were born so I do understand.

Do you have a lovely framed photo you can both look at at home and maybe put flowers next to?

ConfCall · 07/12/2019 17:47

I’m really sorry about your Mum OP.

Christmas Day is very exciting at that age. Maybe you should go on a different day - the Sunday before, perhaps. Make a new tradition. If he rebuffs that idea, there might be more to his reluctance that you need to investigate.

Soulsista14 · 07/12/2019 17:48

I didn’t mean that as harsh as it sounded. It’s just no matter how nice a graveyard it is, it’s still a graveyard. And whilst I appreciate it gives you comfort it probably doesn’t do the same for him as he never knew your mum.

PotteringAlong · 07/12/2019 17:48

Every week seems like a lot; it gives you comfort but it is obviously causing the opposite reaction in your 5 year old.

I would leave it. I wouldn’t want to go and visit my dad’s grave on Christmas Day, I definitely wouldn’t want to leave my presents to do it if I was 5.

I’m so sorry for your loss; I know how hard it is when a parent dies and I cannot imagine having to deal with that at 21 and pregnant, but it’s time to look forward and not back now, and focus on the people here with you.

Fairyliz · 07/12/2019 17:48

I’m sorry that your mum died and at such a time when you really needed a mums support.
However as a mum of adult DD’s I wouldn’t want them to keep visiting my grave especially on Christmas Day which is supposed to be about children and having fun.
Could you ask a friend to have your son for 30 mins and visit on your own on Christmas Eve?

flooredbored · 07/12/2019 17:49

Could it be that he is now at an age where he is thinking more deeply about death? Perhaps he is worried about going there now.

T0tallyFuckedUpFamily · 07/12/2019 17:49

I’m very sorry that you lost your mum at what should have been such a special time, but you really shouldn’t be making your child part of your grieving. That’s not fair on your child.

I’m speaking as a widow that visits my husband’s grave every week after visiting it every day for nearly two years. I never expected my children to go as they deal with it in their own way. My youngest likes to ‘help’ when I’m refreshing the plants, my middle goes down when he comes home for a visit, but he decides if and when he goes, whereas my oldest has been twice since we lost my husband because he can’t cope.

I’m sorry to be blunt OP, but your grief is your own and shouldn’t have become part of his life.

CAG12 · 07/12/2019 17:49

Without being harsh, he didnt know her. I actually think its a tad unreasonable injecting a dead Granny into his life so often. I wouldnt force the issue with him, he might want to go again just not on christmas day.

I do want to say that it must be tough for you, im pregnant with my first and my Dad died so my baby will never get to meet his Grandad. It seems so unfair.

Winterdaysarehere · 07/12/2019 17:50

I know a man of 30 +who's life has been overshadowed with cemetery visits. His db not his dgm though.
Please listen to your dc. Maybe light a candle you choose together instead.
Sorry for your loss op.

Teachermaths · 07/12/2019 17:50

I think your son has been very patient so far. Weekly visits to a grave of someone he never knew are a little intense. Perhaps this is his way of saying this?

TheFaerieQueene · 07/12/2019 17:51

I wonder if thinking about your mother dying has made him worry about you dying, so he wants to remove himself from the actuality of death - the graveyard - to protect himself.

I’m so sorry you lost your mum at such a young age. I’ve just lost my father (I’m a fair bit older than you) and it is horrible.

Watchitt · 07/12/2019 17:51

I think its important for you and you should keep going, its 5 min from your house. Even if he said he doesnt want to I dont think is bad for children to know that not everything revolves around them , he can sacrifice 5 minute once a week. I always tell mine that i spent many hours at the playground being cold/ hot/ bored, they can spend some time coming with me when i have something to do.

eastmeanswestmum · 07/12/2019 17:51

Thanks for everyone’s views.
Please don’t all think I’m this horrible mum that drags my son to a graveyard to cry. I’ve simply tried to include my mum in his life - and as the graveyard is a stones throw from our house we’ve always gone. He has never once expressed he doesn’t want to and more often than not has asked me to go, probably because we sit on the bench have a chin wag and share a bag of chocolate buttons. But I guess I’ll have to accept he probably does think about things more now and leave it

OP posts:
WorraLiberty · 07/12/2019 17:51

I can’t go on my own as I’m a single mum so finding someone to sit in with 2 little ones so I can go isn’t an option.

Why not go when he's at school?

nutbrownhare15 · 07/12/2019 17:51

It gives you a lot of comfort so I'm actually on your side OP. Especially since as you say you'd be out with the dogs anyway. I would gently ask him why to see what's behind it and keep it as open as possible. There may be something you can do to help him feel better about going. What do you do on the visits and how long are you there for? Some kind of routine might help him if you don't already have one, eg we'll just go and tell nanna 3 things I'm proud of you for this week, then we'll go home and do X. I do think in families you should weigh up the needs of all members of the family, including yourself

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