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Old 01-06-2016, 08:52 AM
 
Location: Charlotte Area
3,170 posts, read 2,905,476 times
Reputation: 3529

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So, I have a situation that I need some advice on how to handle. There is a huge back story but I don't want this post to be long. The short of it is that I received a letter from my mother in a Christmas card in the beginning of December. In a nut shell, she says in the letter that we have an enstrangement going on and she'd like to get down to the bottom of it and work it out because of the "innocents" (grandkids) as she calls them in her letter. What it really comes down to is she got her panties in a twist back in May and she has been giving us (all of us) the silent treatment. It's her MO. It has been my entire life. I responded back to the letter on the 18th of December and haven't heard anything back. Ah...to me it's been peaceful and doesn't bother me. My kids on the other hand while it doesn't bother them now, I wonder how I should handle it with them.

Do I let them call her? I'm not sure she would answer the call but I could let them try. Or do I go into this with the she made her bed and now she has to lay in it approach? She lives in a different state then we do. I don't want what happened to me as a kid to happen to them as kids. My mom was ALWAYS not speaking to someone in her family. I missed out on a lot of time while growing up with my cousins because she didn't speak to their mother for half my life. She also went through a period where she didn't talk to my grandparents though I was a teen (and she moved out of state with her boyfriend). On the other hand when will it ever stop? It needs to stop at some point and this just might be that point.

My husband isn't much help because he's never had to deal with a mother like mine. He doesn't understand it at all.
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Old 01-06-2016, 09:07 AM
 
Location: Wisconsin
16,499 posts, read 15,961,355 times
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So your mother stopped speaking to you and she is now blaming you for it?

And, she has a stopped talking to relatives in the past, sometimes for years at a time?

How old are your children? What type of contact has your mother had with them in the past? What type of contact do you think that she wants to have with them in the future?
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Old 01-06-2016, 09:18 AM
 
Location: Charlotte Area
3,170 posts, read 2,905,476 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by germaine2626 View Post
So your mother stopped speaking to you and she is blaming you for it?


And, she has a stopped talking to relatives in the past, sometimes for years at a time?


How old are your children? What type of contact has your mother had with them in the past? What type of contact do you think that she wants to have with them in the future?
Yes. She's always seems to be the victim. The kids and I tried calling her back in late May/early June. She didn't answer. I texted her to let her know we tried to call. She never responded. I also emailed her a couple of times and no response. I gave up. I heard from her via the mail on my big number b-day in August. I texted to show my appreciation and she responded back. Since them nothing until the "Christmas card" in December.

Yes, she didn't talk to her oldest sister from the time I was about 5 years old up until I was 13/14. She then didn't talk to her middle sister for a few years. She hadn't had any contact with her middle sister for at least 20 years up until the time she died about 3-4 years ago. She went back to not speaking to the oldest sister for a time and they lived in the same town.

My kids are now 6/7. They've seen her at least once a year except for this year because of the silent treatment. We did live about 3 miles from her 5 years ago and did see her for major holidays/birthdays and maybe once a month or less (depending on if I initiated taking the kids to see her). She then moved away (3.5 hours) and then about 5 months later we moved back to NC for job reasons.
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:41 AM
 
Location: Wisconsin
16,499 posts, read 15,961,355 times
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My advice is to forget about your mother having a regular, normal relationship with her grandkids.


Your children can become good friends with an older couple in the neighborhood, their other grandparents, parents of your friends or even make friends with people in a nursing home. Lots of older people would love to become surrogate grandparents to some young children.
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:49 AM
 
3,395 posts, read 3,210,425 times
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If you set up a relationship between your kids and your mother, aren't you worried she will do the same to them? They could grow close to her only to later have her cut them off.
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Old 01-06-2016, 12:30 PM
 
Location: Arizona
1,599 posts, read 1,271,886 times
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I have a similar situation, but it's my sister. A few years ago, all the problems we were having, but never talked about exploded. We fought endlessly for a couple months with no resolution and I was so exhausted that I just said no more and cut her out. I never reached out or acknowledged her, but she continued to send holiday and birthday gifts. My daughter was the only ond effected, as my son was too young and my youngest wasn't born yet. Anyway, after about two years of this, I contacted her because our parents have developed some health problems and logically we need some sort of plan if something happens to one of them. That is still unresolved, but we have been talking on and off since then, but we have yet to see each other in person, because we still can't iron out our problems. I can not have a toxic relationship in my life and I will not let her come in and out of my kids' lives. So if we can work everything out, I will let her back in with the stipulation that if it comes to cutting her off again, it will be the last time. If she's (or I) has a problem we will just need to address it and work it out before it gets too big.

So OP, if you want to try to work things out with her, I think you should, but just be clear about the rules and stick to them. Her behavior is childish, so you're going to have to treat her like a child.
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Old 01-06-2016, 12:35 PM
 
11,230 posts, read 9,241,988 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Riley09swb View Post
So, I have a situation that I need some advice on how to handle. There is a huge back story but I don't want this post to be long. The short of it is that I received a letter from my mother in a Christmas card in the beginning of December. In a nut shell, she says in the letter that we have an enstrangement going on and she'd like to get down to the bottom of it and work it out because of the "innocents" (grandkids) as she calls them in her letter. What it really comes down to is she got her panties in a twist back in May and she has been giving us (all of us) the silent treatment.
From YOUR perspective, she got her panties in a twist. It would be interesting to understand her perspective.
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Old 01-06-2016, 12:42 PM
 
16,724 posts, read 13,699,473 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Riley09swb View Post
I don't want what happened to me as a kid to happen to them as kids. My mom was ALWAYS not speaking to someone in her family. I missed out on a lot of time while growing up with my cousins because she didn't speak to their mother for half my life. She also went through a period where she didn't talk to my grandparents though I was a teen (and she moved out of state with her boyfriend). On the other hand when will it ever stop? It needs to stop at some point and this just might be that point.

I hope you told her all of this in your response. If she can't behave herself for the sake of her grandkids, then she can't see them. That's how I'd spin it. You have to protect your kids.
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Old 01-06-2016, 02:05 PM
 
Location: Charlotte Area
3,170 posts, read 2,905,476 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by somebodynew View Post
From YOUR perspective, she got her panties in a twist. It would be interesting to understand her perspective.
Her perspective per the letter (she also sent one to my sister which was almost word for word the same letter just a couple of slight differences)was that she is tired of waiting for invitations to visit and that when she is invited she is given dates as in will this weekend from this day to this day work for you. She doesn't like that she can only stay from this day to this day. She once stayed with my husband and I for almost 2 weeks. So we now give her a begin and end date for visits. She got "her panties in a twist" in May because she had called to talk to the kids. I hadn't heard my phone when she called. When I let her know that we would give her a call back when we got a chance (we had a busy two weeks with appts after school, sports activities and birthday parties as well as girl scouts parties/meetings)that we were pretty busy at the moment she stopped communicating completely.
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Old 01-06-2016, 02:08 PM
 
Location: Charlotte Area
3,170 posts, read 2,905,476 times
Reputation: 3529
Quote:
Originally Posted by Book Lover 21 View Post
If you set up a relationship between your kids and your mother, aren't you worried she will do the same to them? They could grow close to her only to later have her cut them off.
Yes, I do think that there would be a chance that she would do the same to them. My dealings and feelings about her and with her completely color my view on it. She ruined my grandma's funeral for me. She told me something that I had no business knowing. It was something that should have died with my grandma (it had zero to do with me). I worry that she will tell them things that they have no business knowing.
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