35 answers

Grandma Moving Out of State Family Does Not like the Idea

I am a mother and a grandmother who is planning a move to another state in 2009. My family thinks I am terrible for leaving behind a grown, married, son and his two children. When the middle child was born, they did not want her, so I took her and raised her, and adopted her in 2006. I have had her since she was born in 1997. I also have a 23 year old, still at home, but graduated and working. Both of these kids will be going with me. The 23 year old by his choice, because he wants a better job and a better life than the state of Louisiana can offer him. Louisiana has poor education systems regardless of what anyone says. We have been in this state for 41` years and not a lot has changed, espically the eucation system. I want better for my daughter. There is nothing here for young people. Drinking, nightclubs, etc. Not what I want for my kids. My mother spends NO TIME with us at all. She is at my sisters most of her life. My son is 36, married, and has had another child. It is time to grow up and accept his own responsibilities. I am tired of raising grandchildren. I just want to know what it is like to be a GRANDMA. Spoil them and send them home. I will come back in the summer and visit, and the grandchildren can fly up and stay some in the summer. What is so wrong to want to better myself and my children?

All advise is welcome. I am not going to be put on a guilt trip. I have a nephew and neice who live in Seattle, whom we adore and will be there for us.

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks to everyone for the great responses. It makes me feel a lot better with all the positive answers I have received. I am absolutely going to Seattle probably in June or July of next year. My daughter will have finished 7th grade. That will give her a year left in Jr. High to make new friends, before going into High School. By the way , My neice that lives in Seattle originally got me hooked on Mamasource by e-mail. It is a great way to communicate and get wonderful support, even when you are a 60 year old grandma.

Thanks a bunch
S. Miller
Lake Charles, Louisiaan

Featured Answers

S., you have to do what is best for you and if that means leaving "grown" children behind so be it. I did not have a problem leaving mine behind when it was time for me to move, it has actually made me miss them for a change. They love it whn we are in town and spend some time with them. Really hate the fact that you are disappointed with Louisiana because it is where my husband, youngest son & I just moved to from South Carolina (I thought they had the lowest educational standards :-)) My children are all grown and the youngest (23) is with us by choice and working, something he was having a hard time doing in SC because there did not seem to be any jobs.

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S.,

Your children need to realize that this is your life and you have every right to live it as you please to do. You need to tell your "grown" ones that they as parents should understand that we put our lives on hold until our children are grown. Well, S., your life is no longer "on hold", and doing what you want with your life is a privilege that you have EARNED. Good for you! Go forward and live well!

Best of Luck!

A.

1 mom found this helpful

I think what you are doing is incredibly brave. You are doing what you need to do for your children and that is commendable. As for your oldest son, he needs to realize that. You do what you need to do and that is all that matters. Good luck!!

1 mom found this helpful

S., you have to do what is best for you and if that means leaving "grown" children behind so be it. I did not have a problem leaving mine behind when it was time for me to move, it has actually made me miss them for a change. They love it whn we are in town and spend some time with them. Really hate the fact that you are disappointed with Louisiana because it is where my husband, youngest son & I just moved to from South Carolina (I thought they had the lowest educational standards :-)) My children are all grown and the youngest (23) is with us by choice and working, something he was having a hard time doing in SC because there did not seem to be any jobs.

Hi S.,

You have every right to move out of state and I think you are making the right choice. Especially for the reasons that you stated. We moved away from our daughter and her young family last year. True, it does seem like we don't see them often enough anymore. But what time I do spend with them now is more precious. Don't let the others make you feel guilty. You have reached the age that you shouldn't have to be "the mother" anymore and should enjoy the grandmothering phase of your life.

Growing up my grandparents lived in another town...about 220 miles away from us. The best memories I have are the summers that I spent with them.

You go, girl...and don't feel guilty.

W. Q

I think you've done more than your share for your family, it's time to do something for yourself and the family that you are still raising. You are still 60 years YOUNG, starting a new life will be a wonderful adventure - best of luck to you!!

First of all, you are not terrible for wanting a better life for yourself and your two children who live at home with you.
There is nothing at all wrong with wanting to better your situation, especially for the sake of your children.

It also sounds like your adult child or children have possibly been using you as a free babysitting service, and they resent the fact that you will no longer be at their beck-and-call for whatever they feel they need from you.

You know, life is simply too short to always worry about how other people will react to your choices, or what they will think of you if you move. If you believe that you only have one life on this earth, then please spend that life doing things that make YOU happy. If we continually worry about everyone else, well, that leaves nothing for us, does it?

Firmly tell them that you ARE moving, and that you would be more than happy to host them when or if they decide to visit, but for them to give you some advance notice of their arrival, so you can plan for it.

Maybe once they see that you are truly serious, they will relax about the move. It could be that they are simply worried about you and your younger children, since you will be moving away from the security of familiar surroundings in which you have lived for 40 years.

After their first visit with you, when they see that you have indeed made a good new life for yourself and your children, they will likely embrace the move as beneficial. Plus, they have somewhere to go on vacation!

Seriously, assure them that the three of you will be just fine. If you show them that you already have things lined up in the city to which you will be moving, they will feel better about it. I mean things like a part-time job, a place to live, possibly friends you may have already.

Also, look online to see if there are any community boards for the area you are moving to, and sign up so that you may ask the locals things like where is the best place to shop, what is the safest area of town, the name of a good doctor for yourself and your son, and a pediatrician for your daughter, etc. Make a list of their recommendations, and you will already be prepared with that before your actual move.

Whatever happens, good luck to you.

I say, GOOD FOR YOU! It sounds like they don't want you to move because they depend on you too much, perhaps taking advantage of you. We have not lived near our families since we left for college (15 years ago), although we love them dearly. Between the internet, cell phones, the vacations, we get to see them as often as we can. This is a great time for your family to learn some independence and responsibility, when you are not immediately there to pick up the pieces. I hope you enjoy your move and find a world of opportunities. God Bless!

You truly inspired me to to feel less guilt for my hard decsion to move away from my grown children & grandkids. Thank you.

To me it sounds like your son needs to grow up! You are a grown woman that deserves the chance to do what you want. Your family might be mad for awhile but this is your life not theirs. Move, make the most of it, and tell them this is your decision not theirs! My mother had moved out of state a couple different times and when we did get to see each other it felt like we were closer and valued our time together even more. Good luck with your move!

My dad moved to Hot Springs AR a few yrs ago. The family wasn't happy about that either. However, sence he moved most of the family followed him up their.

You have to do whats right for you and your children that are moving with you. The rest will grow up and get over it.

I love my dad and mom, they both live a 4 hr drive away, but when I can, I go see them.

Do it, they may soon follow you. Hope this helps.

SAHM with twin daughters and a son.

Wow- you've been put through the ringer. You've done more than your obligation. It's time to start living for YOU. It's best for your daughter to move, and I agree- your son and his family can travel to see you guys. They've had it terribly easy. I can understand them not being ecstatic about you moving (admittedly, it's a huge loss) but it's a loss for their convenience too. You have made it easy for them- raising their daughter, doing all the tough work, while they still have the convenience of being with her. What message does that send to the poor girl? Get her in a place where she can form her identity and not be so confused.
Here's your permission to feel self-righteous... make that move! It's for all the right reasons.

My Hats off to you. By all means, move to Seattle and enjoy the change. You have Obviosly thought this out, and the reasoning is valid. I do believe it will help the 36 year old to be as resposible as he should have been a long time ago. This will make a difference to your 11 year old and the 23 year old son. She will have a better education and he will have more job opportunities. Besides you have family there and can visit the others and they can as you say, come up for a visit. Definately, do what you plan, it souds good for your family that are with you. I'm a born again christain and I know the Lord will go with you as you pray for his guidance.God bless you! A.

BRAVA, S.!!!!!! I am giving to you a full clap, take a bow my friend, take a bow! My hat is off to you.

No guilt trips! You certainly don't deserve that. I agree with you 200%. Time for everyone to grow up and take responsibility for their own lives and their own children. I'm puzzled as to how and why your son & daughter-n-law would give up their second child in the first place. How could they not want her? She is as much a blessing from GOD as any other child! What a wonderful person you are to take on such a task at a time when you'd completed your motherly duties in that area. You're right in saying you were at the age of simply being the grandma who spoils 'em and sends 'em back! And now you are a mom all over again still heading toward the adolescent years with a daughter.

GOD BLESS YOU, S.! Your daughter will treasure your love forever, I've not doubt.

Now take off! Go where you want to go, do what you want to do! You can do no more than what you've already done for the grown son. He has his own chosen family since long ago and should be mature enough to deal with his own life and the consequences of his choices! If he is not, at this point, oh well...YOU are not responsible for picking up the pieces of his life, nor for cleaning up his messes.

go to Seattle, or wherever it is you want to live! Wherever you go, your daughter will be happy because she is with you.

Once again, NO GUILT! SMILE, BE HAPPY, ENJOY LIFE AND ALL THAT'S LEFT OF IT FOR YOU! ENJOY YOUR OTHER GRANDCHILDREN AS A GRANDMA.

I am nearly 52 yrs old. My grown kids are 25, 27 and 32. I was born and raised in New Orleans! Horrible place, in my opinion to raise children for all the reasons you've already named. Hence, I moved around from their to Alabama, to Mississippi (north Jxn) to Arkansas. I am blessed by GOD to have kids who although they experimented in all the wrong ways, they came out clean, healthy, smart, hard-working, and self-sufficient! They are kind, loving, warm, generous kids that any mom could be proud of. And not one still lives in NOLA. ALLELUIA for that miracle! I now live in Mexico and feel confident that my grown babies are safe and happy. When i made my decision, not one said anything less than, "If you will be happy there, mom, then so are we! Go and live your life! You've done all that you can for us. It's up to us now to show you what we've learned!" now you see why i am so proud of them. ENJOY YOUR LIFE, S.! you've earned it.

take care my friend,

denise maria
____@____.com

Go for it and the best of luck to you. You need to put yourself and your other children first. You seem to have a sound head on your shoulders. You shall all be in my prayers.

Miss S. I applaud you for your decision. My wonderful husband and I made the leap feb of o7. We moved out of the Pacific Northwest and came home to the South. We left our family and grandchild in Oregon. Best thing we could have ever done. We did this for ourselves and for the first time in our married lives we are not doing for family all of the time but for us. Your choice is for three of you, and for the advancement and uplifting of those still in your home. You can never be wrong when all the right things push for change good luck. A. O.

Hey grandma i can relate go for it because at the end of the day your children arent thinking about you well most of them i am some what stuck in that same situation retired from a job that i worked 27 years to keep my grandbaby so my daughter and her husband could go to irraq and now they are back and they want to know what am i going to do now that they dont need me anymore ive got to go back to work and they are both able to help me fianancually but dont they dont need me anymore so they have kick me to the curve so go for it do what makes you happy and god bless you

I don't think that is fair that your family does not support you. Family is always going to be there whether they like what you do or not. I think that you should live your dreams also. I also agree with the raising of the child. Your older son is grown and has another child. There is no way that you should feel pressured. You are trying to provide the best for your immediate family at this time and that is what matters. Don't let the opinion of the others affect you. You need to find your own way. I totally understand this because my mother in law has been a widow for almost four years and is having trouble with deciding to move from her house or not. You would have my support 110%. :) I wish you the best! This is your life and you are a smart woman. Sorry to have went on ranting and all. :) Good Luck! :)

I too am from Louisiana and know what you are talking about. You go ahead and move to Seattle or wherever and do the best for you and your immediate family. The others need to grow up and take responsibility for themselves and their chosen children. You do not need to feel guilty for wanting better for your family. We are close to the same age so I know that you are entering a new phase for yourself; it is time for you to put YOU first sometime. Treat yourself, don't cheat yourself as one wise lady from Patterson once told me. Good luck and stay safe and get happy. J.

Hello S., I agree with you. If you want better for your family, DO IT! No one is gonna be there or do it for them. Remember, they count on you for certain things in life whether they know it or not. You can do no harm to either one of your children by trying to better their lives and let them receive a better education. I hate to say it, but your son needs to get over it, maybe he should think about what you are doing and the benefits then think about his own kids. More power to you for doing what you is best for your kids!!!! Thumbs up!! Best of Luck!

Miss S.,
I live in Louisiana. Not in your area, but it is bad all over this state. The public schools have ranked at #48 or below out of the 50 states in every catagory since I can remember which is about 4 years. I am trying to figure out how to get out of this state before my daughter has to go to school and she is only 20 months old now!

The job market is nearly as bad. The jobs that are available are nearly all either in the medical field or low paying back-breaking work.

If you have a chance to get out my advice to you is to RUN!!!

I hope this helps.

J.

I think what you are doing is a wonderful thing, and you know what is best for your children Give it some time to sink in with the others. and just pray. God will lead you exactly where you need to be when you need to be there. I think it was very couragious for you to make the decission to move and that just shows how much you really do love the ones that you are responsible for. And what mother doesn't want what is best for her children, no matter how old they are.

My hats off to you. You've taken on something that not a lot of grandparents can or would want to do. Don't feel badly about your decision. As you mentioned, they're adults and they need to act like it. That old saying is true, you can't have your cake and eat it, too. Enjoy the new place!

Wow! Sounds like you've got your head on straight, S.. You are being proactive for your family and there is nothing wrong with that. I do understand where the family you are leaving behind is coming from except I think it's unhealthy from what you've written. Everyone needs a support system but not to the point it's dysfunctional and they are expecting you to do there parenting and other responsibilities for them. Case in point, who gives up a child because they "don't want them"? You grow up and learn to love and accept responsibility. I say happy trails and wipe the dust off your feet as you leave.

I think that your kids are grown and you should live your life the way you want to. It's a horrible thing to say about your kids, but if any relationship is toxic to your well being, then move. Louisiana isn't all bad everywhere. We're in St. Tammany parish and the schools are so much better here than where we were in Virginia. Granted, as far as entertainment, you have to make a lot of it yourself, but that's not necessarily a bad thing either. I kinda miss having the zoo, museums, and the beach a 30 minute drive away since now it's at least twice that to get into New Orleans.

I've heard lots of good things about Seattle. At least go for an extended visit if you can before moving permanently. That way you know if the local culture and weather are right for you.

It's really hard to move away from family even if they drive you up the wall. I just moved literally 1000 miles away from my mom and stepdad. While they did a lot for me, and I love them dearly, there were a lot of strings attached that I wasn't terribly comfortable with. Mom even tried to undermine my marriage in order to get me to stay. Be prepared for things to get really ugly with the family you're leaving behind. The less you say about it to them before everything is in place, the better. That way you can make your final decision without a load of poison in your ear.

Go and be happy! Celebrate this wonderful time of your life. My mother is 62 and travels like mad! I miss her and don't want her to leave but that's just me being selfish! She (and you!) sure shouldn't sit around so we won't pout. It makes us stronger and her happier. I know she loves me with all her heart, it's just her time now to go and be happy without us tagging at her pant leg. Blessings and good luck on your move. I hope your bags are already packed and you get the heck out of LA soon! I bet our kids will be able to call anytime and you'll enjoy the BRIEF visits! Enjoy your life and thank God that you are strong enough to make the move!!

Don't let anyone give you a guilt trip - we tend to do that to ourselves enough as it is. I think what you are doing is the best thing for everyone in your family, including those left behind.

I have a lot more to say but I think the small amount I wrote is sufficient to get my point across :o)

I think that is awesome. I live in a rural community where the mindset is that this is all we can have and we have a duty to stay here, even though there are much better opportunities for us elsewhere. We end up staying and taking care of our parents until they pass and then thinking that it is too late to do anything else with our lives so we stay and work for minimum pay and with a boring life. Of course, there are the benefits to small town life as well, but the point I am trying to get at is, change is good. It sounds like some of your children are still very dependent on you and not thinking about what is good for you and your daughter and 23 year old. You are thinking about what is best for all of you. I commend you for taking in your grandchild as your own- I know that isn't easy at all as I have friends who have done the same. The other children have to let go at some point and quit trying to make your decisions for you. I think it is a wonderful opportunity! Good luck!

Best wishes in your new life! Move on, Grandma!

You have every right to move where you want. Its your life. But I understand your son will miss you. I lived on opposite ends of the country from my mom and it made seeing each other difficult - but not impossible.

First of all I pray your move goes well. I would started by spending sometime with each of your kids, and grandkids you will leaving behind, have a specail day with each of them. I would also give them some detail plans of how you plan to still a part of their life even after you move. Make you can give them a few dates you plan on calling or come back to visted. For the little ones give them some tapes in tell them to recorded massage for you, or maybe a camera for them to take pictures and send them to you about what is going on and their lives.

Go for it - live your life. Your family should be very thankful for all the time that they have had with you so nearby. Change is hard for a lot of people but don't let them stop you.

Sounds like you already got it figured out. You did your diaper duty. Its time to cut your kids' cords & live "your" life. I feel the same way regarding my girls' schooling tho (but I cant afford to move to Europe :}) Good luck, I wish you and fam all the best!

I say, go for it. Your children will adjust. They'll do what they need to do--grow up and consider someone besides themselves. May God richly bless you.

P. P

PS: I am a 64 year-old-Grandma who enjoys her grandkids, loves them silly, and sends them home.

It sounds to me like you should be nominated for sainthood!! I applaud you for refusing to be put on a guilt trip. You should definately make the move if it is best for you and your two remaining children. God bless you!!

I moved from BR to Bellevue which is a suburb of Seattle. My husband and I were there for 10 of the best years of our life. We recently moved back to BR for my family after 10 yrs of my mom complaining about how far away we were. Now she won't even drive across town to see us (she expects me to pack up 2 kids and go to her place that is not kid friendly). Hindsight being 20/20, I would love to still be in Seattle. The only thing that's keeping us here is my grandmother who is 91 years old. I wouldn't give up the time we've had with her for anything.
Schools are horrible here. We're going to end up paying thousands a year for a good education here when our boys could've gotten a great public education in Seattle. If you would like to see how the schools there rank, www.schoolmatters.com is a great website.
The jobs up there are much better also. If you or your 23 yr old are computer savvy, there will be NO problem getting a good paying job. The employment agencies there are wonderful and most companies use them. Just keep in mind, it will cost a LOT more to live there than here. The only thing that's cheaper there is home and car insurance (which will come in handy when your 7th grader starts to drive).
Also, it is very liberal up there. If that is how your politics go, great. If not, it will take some getting used to.
Religion isn't exactly talked about up there. If you are a religious person, it will take some getting used to as well.
The only other thing to be aware of is the weather. I have gone 33 days without sunshine. Just gray, cloudy, cold, wetness. It gets to you. If you are someone who needs sunshine, purchase a sun lamp or go to the eastern side of the Cascade mountains. In the winter, there will be snow but there will more than likely be sunshine too. The summers are beautiful there. The mountains can't even be described they are so wonderful. If you like doing outdoor activities, you'll love that there is NO humidity there. At all. And when someone says "Wow. It sure is humid today" you will walk outside and burst out laughing cause they have no idea what humidity is.
One more thing. Compared to Seattle, there is nothing to do here, especially with kids. You will never have a problem finding something good and safe for your 7th grader to do.
I really miss it. I'm hoping we can move back at some point in our lives.
Good luck and enjoy YOUR life.

This is a hard one because family sometimes is all you have BUT, sometimes everyone has to just let go. There are also (in different families) where family will take advantage of you first rather than other people you don't even know. It's always a good idea to keep distance between all family members. We live 45 minutes away from my mother in law strictly because we don't want her popping in when ever she wants and we don't want her so close to us that we take advantage of her, not knowing we're doing it. Our other grandparents live three states away and we all get around to see them only about 3 times a year. If you are moving to a different state, I've always thought that 5-6 hours away and no further. I don't blame you for wanting a better education for your children. If you didn't? Then you'd be taking care of them too later on since they didn't have the best education, thus bringing a better job down the road. My own mother is gone and she would have been the biggest impact on her grand kids, now she's gone, and I didn't realize what I had until she was gone. Your family will think the same thing. If your not around all the time, they will value your presence that much more when you are in visiting. As for the education, check around in the different states to see where the best educations are and located. I've heard Tennessee is great and in certain areas, very family oriented.

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