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Stepdad is cutting paternal grandparents out

Posted by on Sep. 25, 2017 at 9:35 PM
  • 16 Replies
Stepdad being my new brother in law. My sister got married about 18 m ago, to a man she met online. My sister and 5 yo niece then moved out of state to live with him. I started to notice that Bil had an attitude about my nieces biological father and his family. He would get angry if biodads name was mentioned around him. Biodad is in the army stationed in europe and he doesn't see her. My niece did, however, have a wonderful relationship with her paternal grandfather, his wife, and granddaughter they have custody of. When my sister was a single mom, she would send my niece to stay with her paternal grandparents for 1-2 weeks at a time. They are such loving people and treated niece very well. She loved being there and developed and close relationship with her cousin as well.
After niece and sister moved out of state, she ghosted that side of nieces family. Sister told me that Bil thinks its "inconvenient" to have them in nieces life. I hoped it would blow over, and he would get over it, or my sister would put her foot down. However, sister recently instructed my parents and I not to speak about grandpa or that side of the family to niece at all. Bil apparently thinks they can just pretend they never existed? I will never understand that way of thinking...
I'm just flabbergasted that my sister is letting an insecure man do this! I contacted my nieces grandfather on facebook and explained what was going on because I can only imagine what they are thinking and feeling. I wanted them to know that they didn't do anything wrong, and offered to give them updates on niece and send pics.

What do you ladies think? I REALLY hate getting involved. Should I have minded my business or did I do the right thing?
by on Sep. 25, 2017 at 9:35 PM
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by Member on Sep. 25, 2017 at 9:37 PM
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I posted this in mom confessions earlier today, but I would like more feedback. I thought you ladies might have some good advice:)
by Member on Sep. 25, 2017 at 9:42 PM
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Assuming they are not toxic to your niece your sister is with an insecure, and controlling man. I don't know of I would qualify this type of control as abuse but it is a HUGE red flag to me and your sister going along with it is horrible for your niece. Its setting her up for abandonment issues etc. By no means would I drop this to my sister
by on Sep. 25, 2017 at 9:48 PM
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I would get involved. But then I am outspoken and would call them both out. Alienating family is a sign of DV. So what is he going to do, have his wife stop talking to her entire family if you all gang up on them and tell them how stupid they are being? Also the grandparents should see a lawyer about suing for grandparents rights. If htey were a large part of her life and have an established bond, they may have a case. I would do that asap if I were them. And I would be willing to help pay the lawyer fees if I were in your shoes.

by Platinum Member on Sep. 25, 2017 at 10:07 PM
Did she "ghost" before bil? You mentioned he is new.
Maybe it's not him, but her. As the mother, it's really none of your business.
by Gold Member on Sep. 26, 2017 at 1:36 AM
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How close are you with your sister?  Do you guys have the relationship where you can get involved? 

A SF married into our family who is like that and yes, we have and still do get involved when his bullshit gets out of hand because that behavior is abusive.   Its wrong to alienate a child from thier parent/family and it can cause some severe damage to the child's parent who is allowing thier spouse to do that. And TBH, his abuse/control issues will get worse if he feels like he can get away with treating your neice that way. 

As a sister and an aunt, I would be incredibly pissed and concerned about this. 

Does the father have visitation? 

by Member on Sep. 26, 2017 at 9:45 AM

There's not much you can do but be there for your niece.  She's going to have a huge sense of loss.

by on Sep. 26, 2017 at 9:51 AM
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Not to mention that she thinks she has a right to control what YOU do and say.  At this point I'd bet the GPs could sue for grandparent rights since they used to spend so much time with her and she often stayed with them for extended periods.

by Silver Member on Sep. 26, 2017 at 10:03 AM
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Well, it could be that she had an issue with them exinlaws that you did'nt know about and the timing is just matching up with the marriage/move. Or maybe having the new husband gave her the support she needed to end that relationship. Or maybe he is manipulative and abusive and this is a sign of that.

The best you could do is just ask sis questions- do YOU think this is what is best for the kids, etc. 

by Platinum Member on Sep. 26, 2017 at 10:39 AM
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I don't always do things 'by the rules' so I'd likely get and stay involved in this.  That said, I don't have a sister (so no sisterly bond) and Bro/SIL don't have kids (they have cats), so this hasn't come up in my situation, per se. 

What sort of custody does BF have?  Does he see his child?  Since he's in the military (and currently stationed overseas), did he perhaps set up his family to take his 'visitation' or some 'family time' in his absence?  

I'd speak to my sister, and bring in any other family she's trying to control, and talk to her, without new BIL around, to find out what is going on and why she thinks this is good for her child.  It does sound controlling and abusive to rip the childs family away from her and pretend they don't exist, unless, as someone else mentioned, there was something else going on and this new BIL simply gave her the strength to get her DD out of a bad situation or something.  I'd wonder when this new BIL was going to pull her and your niece away from you and your family as well.  

Again, this is all theoretical on my part as I don't have nieces/nephews nor a sister or a sibling with children, but, I HAVE been involved in situations where I likely should have kept my mouth shut and didn't, even for people who aren't 'family' but are 'like family'.  :)  So, use caution there with my thoughts.  :)  

by Bronze Member on Sep. 26, 2017 at 4:14 PM
Damn, that really sucks for the kid and the grandparents.
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