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Old 08-06-2019, 01:49 PM
 
1 posts, read 1,052 times
Reputation: 15

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I am not sure how to feel anymore


Okay, so here it goes..


I have learned to live my life without my mom and dad. They uprooted many years ago. I live in New Jersey, and they moved to South Dakota.


My parents decided to make this move roughly ten years ago. My kids were so young that my heart broke. It shattered in to 1000 pieces. Yes, because I knew that I would miss them, but more because I knew that my two AWESOME kids would grow up not knowing the bond of child to grandparent.


Growing up for me was wonderful. I had both sets of grandparaents. Four loving grandparents who showed children the true meaning behind silver hair with a golden heart. The love, admiration, and adore that I had for them is undefinable. I miss each of them everyday and find myself WISHING that my two kids had what I did.


I am bitter that my parents chose not to be grandparents, but I am conflicted at the same time. Am I acting selfish? Because there is a side to me that says "Hey, they raised you. They know you are happy. They know you are in good hands with your husband and will be an awesome mom. But now it is time for them to live the life that they want."


A part of me will always harbor resentment toward them for making such a move though. I mean, they moved to an area with no direct aiport! It is a small aiport that is so expensive to fly in to. So now, if I go there, I have to fly in to a major aiport and drive three hours to their home. In addition to that fact? NO DIRECT FLIGHT TO SOUTH DAKOTA! NONE! So now, I have to have a lay-over in Denver! I get one vacation per year,, and as sad as it is to say (write), my vacations are just that "MINE!" There is so much of this world that I want to see. Of course I want to see my mom and my dad, but I want to see crystal clear blue seas, white sands, palm tress, and drink exotic cocktails. When I make these plans (and I do), I get the "Oh it must be nice." "Oh you can go there but not come and see us." I dread telling them abou my vacations, because I am handed the famous guilt trip.


My take on that? You moved away from me. You are retired. You can come and visit ANYTIME and stay AS LONG AS YOU WANT, but you NEVER visit. You NEVER have money to do so, but I should visit you on my one vacation per year? Do I sound spoiled?????
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Old 08-06-2019, 02:02 PM
 
461 posts, read 90,886 times
Reputation: 497
Quote:
Originally Posted by fmc1973 View Post
I am not sure how to feel anymore


Okay, so here it goes..


I have learned to live my life without my mom and dad. They uprooted many years ago. I live in New Jersey, and they moved to South Dakota.


My parents decided to make this move roughly ten years ago. My kids were so young that my heart broke. It shattered in to 1000 pieces. Yes, because I knew that I would miss them, but more because I knew that my two AWESOME kids would grow up not knowing the bond of child to grandparent.


Growing up for me was wonderful. I had both sets of grandparaents. Four loving grandparents who showed children the true meaning behind silver hair with a golden heart. The love, admiration, and adore that I had for them is undefinable. I miss each of them everyday and find myself WISHING that my two kids had what I did.


I am bitter that my parents chose not to be grandparents, but I am conflicted at the same time. Am I acting selfish? Because there is a side to me that says "Hey, they raised you. They know you are happy. They know you are in good hands with your husband and will be an awesome mom. But now it is time for them to live the life that they want."


A part of me will always harbor resentment toward them for making such a move though. I mean, they moved to an area with no direct aiport! It is a small aiport that is so expensive to fly in to. So now, if I go there, I have to fly in to a major aiport and drive three hours to their home. In addition to that fact? NO DIRECT FLIGHT TO SOUTH DAKOTA! NONE! So now, I have to have a lay-over in Denver! I get one vacation per year,, and as sad as it is to say (write), my vacations are just that "MINE!" There is so much of this world that I want to see. Of course I want to see my mom and my dad, but I want to see crystal clear blue seas, white sands, palm tress, and drink exotic cocktails. When I make these plans (and I do), I get the "Oh it must be nice." "Oh you can go there but not come and see us." I dread telling them abou my vacations, because I am handed the famous guilt trip.


My take on that? You moved away from me. You are retired. You can come and visit ANYTIME and stay AS LONG AS YOU WANT, but you NEVER visit. You NEVER have money to do so, but I should visit you on my one vacation per year? Do I sound spoiled?????
The first question that comes to mind: what is their retirement income? SD (especially in the middle of nowhere) is much cheaper than NJ.

Also, you need to be fair: if you say "my vacation is just MINE!", they can equally say "our retirement and quiet time is just OURS!". You see, this is two-way road...
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Old 08-06-2019, 02:07 PM
 
3,141 posts, read 2,379,582 times
Reputation: 2369
I feel like you need to call them and say this to them. It's obviously a point of conflict with you and you should talk about it, not just think it.

All three of you will be better off for it, maybe the end result is that you vacation together and not make one of you visit the other in NJ or SD.
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Old 08-06-2019, 02:17 PM
 
Location: NJ
24,869 posts, read 30,984,836 times
Reputation: 16847
Quote:
Originally Posted by fmc1973 View Post
My parents decided to make this move roughly ten years ago. My kids were so young that my heart broke. It shattered in to 1000 pieces. Yes, because I knew that I would miss them, but more because I knew that my two AWESOME kids would grow up not knowing the bond of child to grandparent.
this is some form of fake outrage. i see it every now and then when a person chooses to use their children as an excuse to get mad at someone else for something. "oh its not for me, its for my children!" so now they are justified in their complaining because its not for them, its for the kiddies! please leave them out of your complaints; its silly.

i wouldnt say that you sound spoiled, just like a drama queen.

i dont disagree with much of what you said but i only know your side. my kids have grown up with one grandparent who lives far away and never visits. their lives are still pretty awesome, its not a big deal. my wife sometimes gets theatrical to him about it but whatever its his life. he wants her to visit, not gonna happen.
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Old 08-06-2019, 02:23 PM
 
Location: on the wind
8,251 posts, read 3,570,632 times
Reputation: 28183
Quote:
Originally Posted by fmc1973 View Post
My take on that? You moved away from me. You are retired. You can come and visit ANYTIME and stay AS LONG AS YOU WANT, but you NEVER visit. You NEVER have money to do so, but I should visit you on my one vacation per year? Do I sound spoiled?????
TBH, yes you do, but agree that drama queen fits a little better. Sorry if that sounds harsh. You did ask. If you happen to visit the Parenting or Grandparenting forums you'll probably find lots of threads by grandparents with the same complaint about kids and grandkids who don't visit THEM. You think continental US travel is a hassle? Consider that the trip in reverse isn't a picnic for older folks to navigate either even if they have the money or time for it. It could be worse...they could live overseas. Thousands of families are separated by oceans and multiple time zones.

Have you ever asked them why they chose to move where they did? It wasn't minor. Probably some good reasons that you may not be appreciating. Have you ever discussed all this with them (the fact that you miss them and a closer involvement with the grandkids)? The conversation might help you get past this resentment. 10 years is long enough to carry a grudge. At some point everyone makes decisions based on some degree of selfishness. They did and so do you. Don't you stay in touch with them remotely through skipe, email, phone? Communication is even easier than it was 10 years ago. Sure its not quite the same thing as sitting in the same room, but there's really no reason why your relationship has to be so strained. Something else must be going on to feed this fire.

Turn this around. You could move closer to THEM. Don't start with the excuses about lack of opportunities; jobs, education, lifestyle. It is what it is. When your kids are old enough they could go visit their grandparents on their vacation. Many kids do from one end of the US to the other.

They raised you to live your own life. There is no familial requirement to live their lives in geographical lockstep with yours. This resentment is of your own making, so it will be up to you to come to terms with it. Also sounds as if they aren't the only ones experienced with guilt-tripping. Be careful. You know what they say about apples and the trees they fall from.

Last edited by Parnassia; 08-06-2019 at 02:45 PM..
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Old 08-06-2019, 05:41 PM
 
7,881 posts, read 11,935,349 times
Reputation: 8861
Quote:
Originally Posted by fmc1973 View Post
I am not sure how to feel anymore


Okay, so here it goes..


I have learned to live my life without my mom and dad. They uprooted many years ago. I live in New Jersey, and they moved to South Dakota.


My parents decided to make this move roughly ten years ago. My kids were so young that my heart broke. It shattered in to 1000 pieces. Yes, because I knew that I would miss them, but more because I knew that my two AWESOME kids would grow up not knowing the bond of child to grandparent.


Growing up for me was wonderful. I had both sets of grandparaents. Four loving grandparents who showed children the true meaning behind silver hair with a golden heart. The love, admiration, and adore that I had for them is undefinable. I miss each of them everyday and find myself WISHING that my two kids had what I did.


I am bitter that my parents chose not to be grandparents, but I am conflicted at the same time. Am I acting selfish? Because there is a side to me that says "Hey, they raised you. They know you are happy. They know you are in good hands with your husband and will be an awesome mom. But now it is time for them to live the life that they want."


A part of me will always harbor resentment toward them for making such a move though. I mean, they moved to an area with no direct aiport! It is a small aiport that is so expensive to fly in to. So now, if I go there, I have to fly in to a major aiport and drive three hours to their home. In addition to that fact? NO DIRECT FLIGHT TO SOUTH DAKOTA! NONE! So now, I have to have a lay-over in Denver! I get one vacation per year,, and as sad as it is to say (write), my vacations are just that "MINE!" There is so much of this world that I want to see. Of course I want to see my mom and my dad, but I want to see crystal clear blue seas, white sands, palm tress, and drink exotic cocktails. When I make these plans (and I do), I get the "Oh it must be nice." "Oh you can go there but not come and see us." I dread telling them abou my vacations, because I am handed the famous guilt trip.


My take on that? You moved away from me. You are retired. You can come and visit ANYTIME and stay AS LONG AS YOU WANT, but you NEVER visit. You NEVER have money to do so, but I should visit you on my one vacation per year? Do I sound spoiled?????
Meh.

My sister upped and left me and my folks.

Not a big deal, but I do think life would be easier for her here.

So, anyway, point being people take the kids away from the grandkids all the time, and that's not seen as selfish. Why would the opposite be selfish?

Also, you're just starting to ***** about this after 10 years?
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Old 08-06-2019, 05:55 PM
 
1,150 posts, read 2,534,343 times
Reputation: 1167
Yikes... just... Yikes...

You and your parents need to compromise... can’t you alternate years where you go see them and they come see you?

Be grateful you still have your parents... mine are long dead. Grandparents? Three died before I was born, and the fourth (my father’s father) died just before I turned 3. I’m lucky that I actually have some memories of him. My brother, who was born just a few days before Grandpa died, doesn’t even have that.

I battled like crazy with my parents, especially during the limited adult years I had with them... but I’d give anything to have them back.

You, and possibly your parents, need to grow up and work this out... before it’s too late.
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Old 08-06-2019, 10:05 PM
 
2,129 posts, read 4,060,739 times
Reputation: 5374
Quote:
Originally Posted by fmc1973 View Post
I am bitter that my parents chose not to be grandparents,...
DEAR fmc1973,

That's pretty harsh.

Your parents did not "choose to not be grandparents". I'm sure they still consider themselves to be your kids' grandparents. They simply moved to a different state. They are living their lives. They don't owe YOUR kids anything, including a Hallmark Movie Channel "silver hair with a golden heart" experience. It's nice that you had one, but I'd say you're probably just very lucky and in the minority. Most people don't grow up with 4 doting grandparents. Either there is death, or apathy/detachment, or some family drama making most people's childhoods less than perfect on the nanna & pop pop front.

Also, it's possible that your parents had issues with both sets of their in-laws/your grandparents. Maybe your parents thought your grandparents were TOO involved, i.e. overbearing/meddlesome, and they vowed to do things differently when it was their turn. Maybe you're looking at things with rose-tinted glasses (understandable, as all people do this with certain childhood memories). Or maybe your parents just had a life long fantasy of moving to South Dakota...and they are fully entitled to that.

Your kids can still have a bond with them. But if you feel resentful toward your parents, chances are your kids will sense it, and you'll be contributing to the breakdown of those bonds. It was possible to maintain a bond with grandparents via tinny sounding long distance calls on a landline, and letters and hokey greeting cards via snail mail. As someone mentioned, we know have FaceTime and Skype...a Jetsons, impossible-seeming fantasy for Gen X'ers. That's for real now. Not to mention just plain old texting. And Facebook.

You know, plenty of kids live within a 20 minute drive to their grandparents and have no bond at all regardless of the geographical proximity. What matters is the effort to stay in touch, I think.

Having said that, I also don't think it's right if your parents are giving you a guilt trip about going on vacations that you've earned. However...if you are going on and on about them like you have here ("crystal clear blue seas, white sands, palm tress, exotic cocktails"), maybe they are just having a knee jerk reaction to what they may perceive as boasting. Or, maybe after 10 years, they are feeling lonely out in South Dakota (I'm assuming by themselves)? And if they are tight on money, I think you should probably be a little more understanding that they can't visit you regularly.

-Docendo discimus, ACDAA (Anonymous City Data Agony Aunt)
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Old 08-06-2019, 10:37 PM
 
1,112 posts, read 359,965 times
Reputation: 3031
You should have a honest conversation about why they moved. We had to move for jobs and our parents were retired and flew out once a year. We went to visit also with the kids instead of taking exotic vacations. It a 2 way street.
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Old 08-07-2019, 08:23 AM
 
833 posts, read 579,962 times
Reputation: 799
I can understand being upset that the grandparents are nearby but with today's technology, can't you do a weekly skype or facetime chat? I know it's not the same as seeing the in person but i think it still helps the connection the kids have to the grandparents. On the flip side, i see the younger generation move away all the time? I think back to the people I graduated college with that were from this area and a few are in California, one is in Texas, and one even went to Norway. They are all still there and have families. My cousin just took a new job in Texas and moving there from Pennsylvania where my aunt/uncle drove out to help with the kids....so it happens both ways.

My parents have openly said that they will eventually move to florida or arizona one day. i get it. NJ is expensive and once they are not ready to keep taking care of the house, why move into an expensive condo in NJ when you can live much more cheaply elsewhere with better weather. It'll suck to not have the free babysitting anymore but I understand it. (My hope is for Florida so we have a free place to stay for Disney vacations)
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