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2 Bumps

Too busy grandparents?

Opinions wanted-- My almost-6-year-old DD was once very close to my parent's (as a baby and younger child). She has been asking for the past month or so to go and visit them (they live close but we are all pretty busy) and I shared this with my mother. Finally, yesterday, my mother texted and asked if my DD could spend the afternoon with them. My DD was thrilled. However when I arrived to pick her up, she was parked in front of the television (on a beautiful spring day) and was ready to go! Once alone, she tells me that she never wants to go there again because her grandparents do not have time for her and that they spent the whole afternoon running errands. This kind of ticked me off as I would've preferred she stay home where we could've done something ACTIVE and outdoors! My mother KNOWS this is the kind of mother I am; but I also recognize that she NOT being a real involved mom is what made me the way I am. Would you say something or just make excuses for your DD to NOT go again?? I mean, seriously, why not take an hour away from errands to spend some quality time with your grandchild!??

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BaileysMom476

Asked by BaileysMom476 at 10:55 AM on Mar. 18, 2013 in General Parenting

Level 20 (9,613 Credits)
Answers (15)
  • I'm a grandparent. If I'm busy, I don't get the girls. I only take them when I know I can devote 100% of my time to them. Tell you mom how you feel and your daughter feels.
    m-avi

    Answer by m-avi at 10:57 AM on Mar. 18, 2013

  • I would try to encourage contact centered around a planned activity. Maybe meet at a park or something, that way you set an example of how the visit should go.
    tessiedawg

    Answer by tessiedawg at 10:58 AM on Mar. 18, 2013

  • My MIL wants nothing to do with my kids. She would refuse to watch them or spend time with them. I don't think she would care if she ever saw them again. This upsets my kids dad very much and he is angry at her for the way she treats them.
    My parents like to have my kids over. They see them about once a week or sometimes every other week.
    LostSoul88

    Answer by LostSoul88 at 10:58 AM on Mar. 18, 2013

  • Before I let my kids go back over I would ask what they have planned. If my kids didn't want to go, I would just say that we had other plans already and then leave it at that. Maybe invite them over for dinner with the family instead.
    QuinnMae

    Answer by QuinnMae at 10:58 AM on Mar. 18, 2013

  • I would maybe mention that you understand they are busy, but that you're dd was really looking forward to spending time w/ them, & was kind of disappointed that they were so busy. Have your parents always been like this when your dd visits or was it just this time? My parents were very active w/ my older 2... Overnights, taking them to the zoo & out to eat, they even took my dd w/ them to FL. & my ds w/ them to the Carolina's. However now that I have 4 & my dad is retired, they don't spend as much time w/ the younger ones & I'm worried that there will be jealousy over that later in life.... I wish you luck w/ this & hope for your dd's sake that they are willing to try harder in the future!!
    HappyEndings

    Answer by HappyEndings at 11:14 AM on Mar. 18, 2013

  • I'm NOT excusing what your parents did. But...is it possible that she felt pressured (I understand you only mentioned it and weren't badgering her!) to spend time with your daughter and felt that this was better than nothing? Granted, it's no fun for the child, but if your mom was feeling pressured, she might have figured that if she had no spare time any time soon, that the time spent together was all that mattered, not what they were doing while they spent time together.

    I would just start asking "what are you guys going to do?" when your mom invites your daughter over/out. Then you can present it to your daughter and if she doesn't want to go, you can make an excuse. Or you could just sit down with your mom and gently explain that your daughter felt really ignored/neglected and that right now, she doesn't want to spend time with them anymore. Ask her if she could find time for a fun activity with her to get past this.
    wendythewriter

    Answer by wendythewriter at 11:52 AM on Mar. 18, 2013

  • Wendythewriter -- I like your suggestion of asking beforehand what the plans are! I do not feel as though she felt "badgered" by me-- I would say she might've felt more guilty because they know how much my DD ADORED them and has been asking to see them. It would've been easier on me if she had stayed home -- and more fun for my DD. I am a firm believer in QUALITY over quantity. :-) Personally, I think my mom just prefers babies.
    BaileysMom476

    Comment by BaileysMom476 (original poster) at 12:17 PM on Mar. 18, 2013

  • Love your answer Happyendings
    BaileysMom476

    Comment by BaileysMom476 (original poster) at 12:18 PM on Mar. 18, 2013

  • Yep- have them take her somewhere! Zoo, park, out to eat, somewhere they don't have to focus on their daily life.
    staciandababy

    Answer by staciandababy at 1:40 PM on Mar. 18, 2013

  • My grandkids LIKE to run errands with me and do whatever I am doing. Children should not need to be entertained. Mine park in front of the tv too. They do what ever they want and come in and do what I am doing. Thaey might ask to play a game and I will usually say, let me just finish this. I am not saying we do not go to the park or other things but for the most part staying with me is just living together and sharing each other's company.

    Maybe your parents have seen that you do not like the way they interact with your child.
    Dardenella

    Answer by Dardenella at 2:22 PM on Mar. 18, 2013

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