I've been listening & praying a lot & I have learned to "back off" lately. My son is living HIS life and as much as I hate to admit it, it's none of my business. My role is to just be supportive, right? There are many bright spots. Blake seems happy. I am able to tolerate "her" and I simply adore her three kids. They may be little but they are three of the most well-behaved kids I've ever seen! I am also beginning to look forward to the birth of my first grandbaby probably in April. For me, that's progress!
Be calm, continue to love your son, and pray about the situation. He is going to have to make his own mistakes. I know how painful that can be for a mother. Remember, he is only 18, and has a whole lifetime to turn things around
Fitness Minutes: (3,897)
436 8/19/13 10:29 A
UPDATE: Still using everyone's comments and advice to get over my feelings about my son's situation. While I have been stressed, worried, depressed with self-imposed isolation, Blake is happy about everything. I should be too, right? I am rarely around 'her' so that's good, right?
The best I can do at this time is implement the old, "if you can't say something nice..." principle. I have been trying really hard to know 'my place' in this and be supportive. Lately, however, it's beginning to look like I have been promoted (or demoted) to the roles of just taxi and/or bank. We'll see.
So you expect your son and his wife to be to allow one child to be "special", more "special" than the others? If they do allow that they will be pretty cruddy parents. If your son allows that, he shouldn't even be in the other kids life, he will have no business being their stepfather.
I think I would be very careful with your course of action here. It sounds like you might be on the path to putting a lot of strain on their relationship. In the end they might choose each other and their family over you. Or maybe they won't stay together. Then, unless this women has major drug or alcohol issues she will probably end up wtih physical custody and your son will see the baby every other weekend. That will severly limit your time with this baby and your son won't be there to protect and raise his child, she wil be doing that and you don't seem to agree with her parenting style.
I know sometimes people need to vent. But you have so many negative things to say about the future mother of your grandchild. It doesn't bode well for your family having healthy and happy relationships. Don't assume that is not a possibility here. It would be better than drama and trauma and this young lady getting angry or 'scard of you' to the point where she says she doesn't want anything to do with you.
I wish you happiness and joy. I am sorry you are in a situation that causes you so much distress.
Just something to think about...instead of thinking of your grandchild-to-be as "baby #4 from daddy #3" try thinking about all four children as your grandchildren...which they will be if your son marries her.
Instead of looking at her as a bad partner and parent try looking at the children as little impressionable minds and bodies that YOU can help mold into healthy upstanding productive members of society. Forge a relationship with all the children and you may even find that you will improve her as she may try to strive to be a better person because of your model...also a good way to keep a strong relationship with your son.
Hopefully, they won't use this grandchild to try and control you, hurt you or take advantage of you. Grandparents don't have many rights and, depending on the state where you reside, you may have few or no rights at all (meaning they could possibly deny you any relationship/visitation at all with your grandchild). You need to walk a fine line here, standing up for yourself while maintaining enough of a congenial relationship with your son/his girlfriend that they will allow you to see your grandchild. Be prepared for them to threaten you with not allowing you to see your grandchild unless you do XYZ or if you upset them, etc. It could even become a pattern of behavior with them to treat you like that (sadly, this is a pretty common thing).
So far as you not allowing your grandchild to live like her other kids, you may not be able to do anything about it at all because I think it's going to be very hard to force any changes--the parents can simply ignore you and even if you call CPS (child protective services), they are very unlikely to do anything at all unless the situation is really bad and their definition of bad is likely to be very different than yours.
You might want to do some research into things and see if you live in a state where there are any Grandparents Rights. Be aware that, even in those states that will grant a grandparent visitation, it is often required that a pre-existing and strong relationship with the child must already be firmly in place for visitation to be granted (where the child would be hurt if the relationship were severed--the feelings of the grandparent are typically not considered very much at all). I'd personally advise you to keep meticulous proof of your relationship with your grandchild (photos, a log of every single visit/phone call, receipts for gifts, basically records of everything and I'd advise you to keep a separate log of any bad behavior on the parents' part, a log of the child's weight if you are concerned about that--seriously, just document everything in case you ever need it). Make sure the parents never find out you are keeping records... Here's a place to start (you may even want to talk to a lawyer if you anticipate problems so that you can start off doing what you need to do in order to have the best chance of being granted visitation, if that's even a possibility in your state, if it comes to that):
Fitness Minutes: (5,317)
61 7/30/13 7:57 A
Dyane, I have been reading your updates about this situation and am very sorry you are where you are with your son. I have an 18 yr old daughter and would be broken hearted too. I have a couple of things to share with you, take them for what they are the unsolicited advice of a stranger: take them or leave them, it is ok.
First: this woman is in your life forever because she is having your grandchild. Find a way to make peace with her. Maybe your son is the one who will change things for her and she will settle down. You said he is a great kid, maybe the other baby daddies were not and just left. We don't know what she has gone through. I say this because my DH is 7 years older than I am, I had just gone through an awful divorce when we met and my ex stalked both of us to the point of setting DH's car on fire (such a long story!). Anyway, his friends told him: If you don't love her RUN. Thank God (literally) that he stood by me, we have been married almost 21 years. His mom encouraged me from the first day we met, she gave me a chance, never judging what happened in my past. I pray regularly that I can be the kind of MIL to my future DIL and SIL's that she modeled to me. Oh and I spend every more time with her than both of her sons.
Finally, as far as this woman's kids being underweight, it may have NOTHING to do with her parenting. I have 3 kids, ALL are under the charts for their weight. I am a good mom, I give my kids good healthy food but they are still small. My oldest, the 18 yr old, weighs 90 lbs at 5' 7", she has from a young age been in the 90-100 percentile for height and negative on weight. My 17 yr old son is 5' 8" and 110 lbs and is eating me out of house and home. My 12 yr old is 5' and is around 70 lbs. It is genetic because my MIL who is almost 90 is 5' 1" and weighs 105 lbs, she thinks she is gaining too much because other than pregnancy that is the MOST she has ever weighed in her life.
I have had people ask me if anything is wrong with my kids but they are healthy and eat healthy: people are just used to "chunky" in today's society. So, kids who are thin are judged as "unhealthy".
UPDATE: While my son and "Bossy" are going along like having yet another baby is no big deal, all I see is trouble. It takes two to tango but I blame her for this. I can't even bring myself to speak to her or look at her. I still cannot get past the fact that this is Baby #4 with Daddy #3. I also don't think I will be able to "allow" my grandchild to live the way her other three are living. The 3yr old and 18mo old are very underweight and the 7 year old (girl) acts as surrogate mom. They all cling to Blake like they are scared to let him go AND there is always some new "roommate" moving in or out of her house. So far, the best I have been able to do was "warn" my son. I told him that he'd better tell "Bossy" that Baby #4 is MY grandchild and that means that he/she is in an entirely different category than the other 3--like it or not. (Blake says she's afraid of me...that's something anyway LOL!)
Again, I am asking for your prayers and words because this is the best I can do right now.
I hear you. We have three grown children now. You work and sacrifice and then they grow up and sometimes make the craziest choices. It is so hard, because it is their life now, you can't really help them so much any more.
I just love mine to pieces and I hope they are happy, that is all I hope for....that they find some happiness in their lives. I guess everyone has a different road to walk to find their happiness right?
I am pretty sure some of the choices mine have made won't be leading them to happiness but it is out of my control. That is very, very hard to accept sometimes.
Wishing you the patience of a saint.....you are going to need it. I have a grand child now too. Born when my son was only 18. She is one of the greatest joys in my life. Life is full of joy and heart ache. We all just do the best we can.
Oooh! I remember this! We can't help but wonder those things. It is hard to cut that umbilical cord. Encourage your son to look into on-line colleges, so that he can do it in his own time. Some kids DO better waiting until they're older, though. I am/was one of those. Congrats on being a grandma/nana to be, I guess? Hopefully, this relationship will surprise you. *hugs* and all the best.
Fitness Minutes: (7,338)
191 7/18/13 9:05 A
I understand how you feel about it being YOUR son. No one wants to think that their children are throwing their life away. You want the best for him and to you this isn't the best. This woman has come and took your son away and ruined his chances at a perfect wonderful life.
Now as much as you can feel that way, you did the right thing but having a talk with him. It may not work out, or it just might. But sadly children have free will (personally I wish they didn't lol) and I think you are being a supportive mother but atleast trying to understand how he feels. I say good job to you, and I hope all works out well.
Fitness Minutes: (3,897)
436 7/16/13 8:30 P
I got pregnant at 18, by a man that was 28. We have now been married 11.5 years. We have 3 children and have had a happy life. Things have not always been easy, but we have always had love. Many people thought we were wrong for each other, and my own father told me, the only reason that man was with me was because I was young. I have not spoken to my father in 10 year. If your son loves her, then be supportive. My mother wasn't happy, but her and my step father have always been in our life. My mom has always supported my decisions and lets us know how happy she is that we have made it so long together. I guess my point is this my not be a bad thing.
First, look at what you did right!!! Your son of 18 has a job, and instead of being a run for the hills man, he is an upstanding man willing to put his life aside for his child and a woman he loves. I can see your disappointment. It is too bad that the woman that he has chosen already has children with two different men. It is also too bad that your son isn't grown up enough to see now how difficult that can be. And don't worry. As he grows he will realize that you were right about so much. Maybe even her. Just keep being the best mom (and unfortunately, mother in law) you can be. I guarantee this may not be the end for him. He may still have a very bright future ahead.
I hate to read how sad this makes you. I know when I get pregnant at 17 my parents were going through the same things of what did we do wrong. But I just turned 25, I am a college graduate, I am happily married, and we bought a house a little less than a year ago.
Things change, people change, and I agree the fact he is stepping up and wanting to marry her (hopefully he is truly happy) is great for an 18 year old. Be supportive, and I know that will be tough. Who knows this could turn out to be amazing for both of them. I know my husband (who is not the father of my 2 girls) decided at 30 to go back to college to get a better job to better support us as a family. His mom told me she didn't think he would ever go back just because he didn't like school to begin with. So, don't look at it as everything going down the drain!
Good luck and praying for you!
Fitness Minutes: (36,402)
1,021 7/12/13 11:35 A
Spin this another way: You didn't do anything wrong. Your son is in love with someone - not your choice of "someone" for him, but we can't choose other people's loves for them - and he's treating her honorably and with respect. Faced with something - a (presumably) unplanned pregnancy - that would cause almost any 18 year old guy on the planet to run for the hills, he's not only stepping up to follow through on his duties as that child's father, he's actually excited for the baby's birth and planning to marry the baby's mother, a woman he loves. Having a child with someone you love, and working and caring for your family is never a bad way to spend a life - it's not the same as the life you've pictured for him, but it's a good, decent, honorable way to live. Be proud that you've raised a son who is a good person - the rest will sort itself out.
Fitness Minutes: (45,248)
6,715 7/12/13 9:58 A
I don't think you're being selfish as all. You're a mom... you're human... you had hopes and dreams for your son that included college and THEN marriage and a family. You didn't "let" this happen. It happened. I feel such empathy for you as we have had our own 'drama' with our then 17 year old son (he's 19 now). Different situation but similar feelings of loss and 'what did we do wrong'. That said, as you've learned, you can't control what your grown son does with his life: the fact that he dated his older boss, that he's become a dad or will be getting married. You can't change any of it. The only thing you can change is how you react to it and how you treat them. If you want to maintain a relationship with your son (and future grandchildren) I pray that you will think before you speak, be supportive if you can - without compromising your values - and treat his soon to be wife kindly.
Thanks to everyone who lent me their support and prayers regarding my 18yr. old son's relationship with his 26yr. old boss. They have been living together, he has a full-time job and YES, she is now pregnant with baby #4 with Daddy #3...my son. They told me last night. To their credit, they are happy about it. In fact, Blake wants to marry her. We had a REAL honest discussion. It took everything I had to remain calm but I did. Selfishly, I am upset that "MY" son won't be going to college on the fall...that "MY" son has ruined his life and...that "MY" son is now Daddy #3. "I" am very disappointed because "I" didn't envision Blake's life turning out this way. "I" also have been trying to figure out how "I" let this happen. Like I said, I'm being selfish. *any extra prayers would be appreciated. Thank you, Sparkspeople Family.
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