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Feel shit and pissed off with kids grandparents

243 replies

Mamaofthree1 · 18/03/2023 22:58

I'm a SAHM with 3 kids (10 Wk Old, 1YO, 6YO. I'm always trying my best to be the best parent for my kids, spend time really with them like making sure am present and enjoying their company, take them to places nearly everyday to make them happy. I look back at my own childhood my parents weren't in it with their heart. They don't make any effort to see my kids they expect me to take my kids to see them every weekend they never come to mine to see them, they're not the most welcoming when I go there aswell, after like an hour they're yawning saying they tired etc and make it obvious they cant be arsed with the kids. My dad always drinks atm and that's all he cares about. Just feel like they're barely acting like grandparents. My mam does have MS and feels poorly quite a lot so I dont expect much from her but my dad doesn't have any excuse. My mam is poorly but she could enjoy their company more like interact with rhem more instead of just sticking them in front of the telly as soon qs they come un, if I ask to babysit she plain right refuses straight away. My 2 eldest kids had a sleepover at their house when they were 5 YO and 16 MO only because I left their bags and told them straight they were babysitting while I go to have dinner and night with DH before baby no 3 came along. Because if I asked they would of just said no. Am honestly just feeling so let down by them I normally would go every Saturday to theirs but today I just took the kids to softplay instead. Please tell me its my problem and it's not them. I just see all these other grandparents doing so much with their grandchildren while mine seems to be totally selfish never leave the house to visit us and always negative argumentative and miserable and just toxic for my kids. Sorry for the long post its just getting me so down. I feel like my kids deserve so much more. My other half's parents don't live in this country so they don't have anyone else by their side.

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?


You have one vote. All votes are anonymous.

Doesthepopeshitinthewoods · 19/03/2023 07:09

Mamaofthree1 · 18/03/2023 23:21

Yeah but the real issue isn't that they wouldn't babysit, am not even bothered about going out really. Its the fact that they're not even appreciating what's in front of them.

My 2 eldest kids had a sleepover at their house when they were 5 YO and 16 MO only because I left their bags and told them straight they were babysitting while I go to have dinner and night with DH before baby no 3 came along

You dumped your two small children at the home of your alcoholic father and mother who has MS, because you feel they should babysit more and don’t do enough?


SamMil · 19/03/2023 07:11

Every week is very often. I don't know many people with kids who see their grandparents so much.

I wonder, if you visited less often, whether it would help. It might not make them more interested in interacting with your kids (although there's a chance that it could, if it is more of a treat and less of an expectation!), but it might help you to place less importance on it.

If it helps, our kid has 3 grandparents and their interest varies massively, from one who video call every week & sends gifts, to one grandparent who sees her maybe once a year and otherwise isn't bothered. We don't dwell too much - parent involvement is the most important thing, any time with interest grandparents is just a bonus if you have it.


icanneverthinkofnc · 19/03/2023 07:13

Here for the deletion message..


Whoopsmahoot · 19/03/2023 07:13

YABVU they have raised their family, now is the time for you to raise yours, not them. They can be as involved as THEY want. I had one set of parents who were totally involved while with my husband s it always felt they couldn’t care less. Their choice, their loss.


butterfliedtwo · 19/03/2023 07:17

This reply has been deleted

This has been deleted by MNHQ for breaking our Talk Guidelines.

They also don't have to have a childproofed house.


Itsmyturnnow1 · 19/03/2023 07:22

You’re getting a lot of stick and I don’t get it! I have parents similar!
I have to limit time in their company because they are so depressing! If they don’t make the effort to come and see you, stop making the effort with them.
I don’t agree with the leaving them to babysit bit, if I knew my parents didn’t want the kids, I couldn’t then go off and enjoy myself!
You have to accept they don’t want to be massively involved as you say they didn’t make amazing parents either! Sounds like you do enough to make your kids feel happy and loved.. you don’t need them! @Mamaofthree1


Somethingneedstochange78 · 19/03/2023 07:23

YABU and sound very entitled. It wasn't fair on your children and irresponsible for you to dump them on your disabled mum and dad who drinks. MS is a dibilitating condition.

Do you do anything to help them out? Cook them a meal offer to do shopping for them? And where's DH when you visit at the weekend?


holachicas · 19/03/2023 07:24

I can get why you wish they were more involved but you can’t force them…quite shocked you just dumped your kids on them. Your children are your responsibility, others are allowed to say no.

Some children's grandparents are dead and they grow up fine, this will only negatively impact your children if you make it an issue.

Stop trying to force it by going every weekend and just do your own thing.

Your PP says that you’re not the issue and mo one will get it unless they’ve been through it…why post then 🤷🏻‍♀️


Meandfour · 19/03/2023 07:26



37KAT · 19/03/2023 07:28

A lot of posters have been harsh.

I think the issue is that you want your parents more interested and involved and for their reasons or way of life they aren't.
You say they were not that involved in your life so they probably don't know how, or don't think about being involved with their grandchildren.
I would imagine that any home without small children living in it would not be child safe, so you have to accept that.

Are your children well behaved in their house? Maybe it would be easier to ask them to meet you at the park or a visit a national trust, somewhere outdoors?

I do have some sympathy as my parents rarely came to my house and were not particularly involved.


Aishah231 · 19/03/2023 07:28

What's your relationship with your DPs parents? If you really want the children to have a close relationship with their grandparents is it feasible to move abroad to be close to them? It might seem drastic but they are only young once. Your parents do sound pretty joyless.


Viola59 · 19/03/2023 07:29

Hi OP,
I feel that your having children has brought into sharp focus your sense of being emotionally abandoned by your own parents. Of course other posters are right in saying they are your children and your responsibility ,but there is a sense from you of feeling under valued as a child and the achingly sad gulf that leaves you in even as an adult. I think you were unconsciously hoping that having grandchildren would ‘awaken ‘your parents caring side. They now have health / alcohol problems which strongly impact their ability to care. Where is your partner in all this ?
I was a single parent for years, my husband having left and gone abroad when my children were babies. My parents were incredibly supportive and we saw them most Sundays. I was lucky . Years later my parents needed a great deal of support as they aged. By then I had a loving and supportive partner .This enabled us to care for them. I think you need to seek the support you need elsewhere just now. Maybe you partner could look after the children once a week / fortnight whilst you spend an hour or two helping your mum and talking to your father. Showing them some practical kindness would boost your relationships with each other enormously. You have the power, OP to move things towards a more positive future. It doesn’t need to cost much ,just a little time and listening.


YetiTeri · 19/03/2023 07:36

Mamaofthree1 · 19/03/2023 06:35

Thank you @Sobloodysoreandfedup for your understanding.

I know it comes across as very entitled but I want to clarify that I am not expecting them to babysit for me (the time I mentioned was a one off, my dad didn't drink that night, and I left my 2 kids with them knowing that they would be fine), their house isn't dangerous.

I appreciate people's comments, I have read through all of them and I think posting here has been somewhat useful for me to reflect on my own feelings towards the situation and how I should approach it.

On the note about my mam having MS, its newly diagnosed and she isnt as poorly as what a lot of peoole are suggesting, she still manages to do things like going shopping, travelling, may I add that my mam is not expected to babysit my children.

For me, I would appreciate something like them coming to my daughters swimming lesson as one off with me to see how well she is doing (as an example). This would be more important than babysitting for me, I don't want time off, thats not what I am suggesting. I enjoy my children and am happy to stay in. I was only hoping that my parents would make a bit more effort and enjoy my children too.

I've never heard of a grandparent going to a swimming lesson. That's not really a 'normal' grandparent thing to do. Send them updates yes but not attend unless it's a special thing like a gala or a show.

You need to accept the parents you have and adjust your expectations. They'll probably enjoy your kids more when they're a bit older and have more distinct personalities.


TwoHedgehogs · 19/03/2023 07:48

It is hard to believe this is real to be honest, on the off chance you are just really entitled but this is real, I think your expectations are way too high. You try to make out they don't care/want to see you but then say "they expect me to take my kids to see them every weekend" I'd say that's wanting to be very involved, I'd never visit anyone every weekend like that. But then you say in the next breath you don't want them to babysit? So what's the issue with going to them if it isnt babysitting you require? It isn't normal for grandparents to tag along to swimming lessons (unless they take the kids as the parents are at work), I've never seen anyone bring grandparents to a 30min lesson. I also have 3 kids between 7 and 2, I work ft, I don't have expectations about how anyone else should engage with my kids, I had my kids because my husband and I wanted them, I don't expect anything from anyone else.


Led9519 · 19/03/2023 07:49

Unfortunately relatives aren’t obligated to your children. There are no ‘shoulds’ when it comes to them. The issue here is your expectations versus what your parents actually want to do/behave. They don’t sound like kid people or that they get enjoyment out of children. You can be sad about it but to expect anything of them is wrong.
Now you’ve found out what they’re like maybe cut out the weekend visits so much and say you’re busy out with the kids.

Also it was unreasonable to dump a toddler on them when expecting your third, toddlers are hard work especially to people not used to them and the little one might have made strange/been upset by staying with their grandparents.
I have three children and it’s tough at times but I know (and am reminded) it was my choice.


Zonder · 19/03/2023 08:02

You can't force interest. I would stop going weekly as they're clearly not up for that. Drop it to once a month and lower your expectations.

What about their dad / other grandparents?


Clearthinking · 19/03/2023 08:03

My parents point blank refused to have mine over night although they had my neice every week since she was 3 month old. My husbands set of parents say they will have mine but I have to do the dropping off and fetching and they live 30 mins away so drop off before work then get back to get to work then fetch after work. I'm used to having no babysitters and now come to think about it we managed fine. If you want a nightout look up for a baby sitter like a student I'm sure theres local websites. Its not grandparents rights to watch them.


HappinesDependsOnYou · 19/03/2023 08:07

I wouldn't have just dropped my kid off and expected them to babysit but I get the frustration of uninvolved grandparents. It is horrible when you feel your parents consider your children a burden but you cannot force people to enjoy your kids as much as you do. Is some of this to do with your own childhood feelings? Have you tried a day out rather then going to their house? They may feel more on edge having kids in their not very child friendly home


Azerothi · 19/03/2023 08:10

It sounds to me like you want validation from your parents that you aren't as shit as they are.

You are never going to get it.

You sound very young and hopefully, when you get older (like me) you'll realise it.

Cut back on the visits, relax and accept.


Ohwonderful · 19/03/2023 08:13

I dont think you are being unreasonable to want more from your parents as grandparents. I think it's sad when that typical special bond between a grandparent and grandchildren isn't there.

Doesn't sound like you can rely on them for support with the kids which is also a shame. And despite the series of comments that suggest u are ebeing entitled to expect this - I whole heartedly disagree. I think we all as mums expect a level of practical and emotional support from our own mums/parents. I dont think this I'd entitlement.

Sounds like you put a lot of effort into maintaining the relationships op. Dont be scared to pull back a bit if it's leaving you feeling deflated. Try and build a positive support network outwith them like friends with kids you can spend time with or building in time for you and your husband to take turns getting some time alone.


SqB · 19/03/2023 08:19

My lovely Mum is disabled and she’d love to be able to do more with my children. I do my best to make sure I help her as much as possible, I don’t dump the kids on her and add to her stress!


Keepitrealnomists · 19/03/2023 08:23

My parents were rubbish and guess what they are just as awful grandparents. I've stopped trying, their loss.


FlamingoQueen · 19/03/2023 08:24

I don’t think you are being unreasonable. You are not expecting your parents to babysit / do childcare - just would like them to take an interest in your children. Some grandparents just do not do this. I had the most amazing grandparents and absolutely adored them - my kids do not really have relationships with their grandparents. They don’t even text / ring on their granddaughters birthday (although cards sent).

For your own sanity, I would stop visiting them - if they are more than capable of coming to you, then let them do that. It is far easier when the children have their own toys etc. It is important that you accept they are not going to change and you need to continue to build your own loving relationship with your dc. It will mess with your head otherwise. They have a choice - if they choose not to engage, then it’s tough. Their loss.


BeanyBops · 19/03/2023 08:26

I think yanbu. It's natural to want the best for your children and that includes loving, involved close family often primarily grandparents. When you take them over the grandparents don't seem too interested. I think that is sad.

My parents are the same with my little girl and I spent a long time being upset and angry. However. I have since learned that I cant change them. They love us, but in a hands off way. That's their way and it's the best we can get. I accept them for what they can offer and focus on what I can do for my own child. The most importantly thing to them is the love and care they get from you.


InsertMoniker · 19/03/2023 08:42

I think we all as mums expect a level of practical and emotional support from our own mums/parents. I dont think this I'd entitlement

It is literally entitlement.

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