My mother-in-law has four grandkids, my son being one of them. She is a wonderful grandmother to the other three grandkids, just not to my son.
She sends care packages to the other kids, surprises them with visits and toys, babysitting whenever she can, etc. Yet she does not call my son, send him anything, or spend any time with him.
My mother-in-law lives a few states away from the whole family, and when she does come up to visit, she will spend 6 of her seven-day visit with my husband’s siblings and their kids and only 3 hours with us. My husband defends this behavior by saying his siblings ‘need’ her more; therefore, their kids get more (time, money, love, etc.), but it is really starting to hurt my son and me that our family is never included and always put last.
Is this worth the argument with my husband? How do I address this with my mother-in-law? It sucks to always be left out. Thank you!"
RELATED QUESTION: Does It Sound Like My Mother-in-Law Is Playing Favorites?
TOP ANSWERS (AS SELECTED BY MODERATOR):
“Dealt with this kind of MIL witch for 30 years! My husband would make excuses for her at times and then sometimes defend me and our boys. His whole family has issues with me, my boys due to SOMETHING. I would not go to family get-togethers (most of the time) and would NOT make the boys go either especially if they didn’t want to. If my husband wanted to go (which he usually did) he was going by himself! Just don’t talk about it when you get back home because I don’t want to know. She died in October 2019. I went to the funeral out of respect for my husband, but I did NOT shed a tear. There is so much more to this than I can say in one comment, too. It would literally be a book! She was just an evil, hating witch! DING DONG that witch is dead!”
“I would distance myself and my child from her.”
“Do nothing. Let it go. You can’t control other people. She is free to allocate her time and resources as she wishes.”
“I dealt with the same kind of witch. They never change. My kids never understood but what can you do? Especially if your husband is defending her.”
“Do the other grandkids belong to her daughter? If so, maybe she afraid of stepping on ‘in-law’ toes. Whereas with her own daughter, she doesn’t mind imposing on? Next time she coming to town, tell her you would love for her to stay with you for a night. Go from there.”
"What are you going to say? ‘Love my child more!’? Lol. OK, as a grandma of 6, a couple of things MAY be going on here (or all):
tighter bond with those parents/ they get along better
they have a few kids, you have one
yes, grandparents have preferred grandkids
Take it for what it is, promise you, confronting her about it ISN’T going to change anything, maybe make things worse."
“Absolutely not worth the argument. Why try to make someone be involved more than they want to? It hurt my feelings at first but now I realize the important people that want to be in my child’s life will be and she will learn who is and isn’t there for her as she grows.”
“Maybe you or your husband’s personalities clash… or the child just isn’t bonded with Grandma. Not much you can do but try and build a relationship between them.”
“I feel you. My daughter’s grandma lives 5 minutes away and never sees my child, no calls, nothing. She gets gifts on holidays and if I’m in desperate need of a babysitter I’ll break down and ask her. But she makes efforts to visit other grandchildren in other towns and states. I’m done with it I will never beg someone to be in my child’s life. It’s hard though cuz my daughter doesn’t understand why she doesn’t see her.”
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