C.S. asks from Waterbury, CT on July 28, 2012
Grandparents - How Much Time?
My mom never sees my kids. She says she doesnt have the time b/c she works 40 hours a week. She goes into work for 3 and drives right by my street. I suggested maybe she could leave a bit earlier and stop in to see them...Maybe take them out for a lunch one day? Or an ice cream cone? Or a walk in the park? ANYTHING. They love her and they want to see her.
She never makes an effort. She tells them "Nana will come and pick you up one of these days" It never happens. She told my son on April 27th she would take him out for an outing, just the 2 of them. We are still waiting. Its the END OF JULY!I have reminded her, many times. I just get the, "maybe next week."
Do your kids grandparents work FT? If so, how much time do they spend with your kids?
S.W. answers from Minneapolis on July 28, 2012
It seems to be challenging for families to find the right balance with grandparents visiting. The questions on this site are either about meddling grandparents or grandparents not involved enough!
My 10 year-old daughter's grandparents are all deceased. So I would be glad that your mother is involved at all.
I'm a grandmother of 4 now. I see them fairly often, three of them live close, but I usually wait for a specific invitation or request to watch the kids from their parents. Otherwise, I assume they are involved with leading their family's life, and I'm living mine. I am totally guilty of the "you kids need to come to visit me at the lake soon" kind of statement, then the days and weeks fly by and we don't arrange a date.
I suggest making specific invitations - "The kids would love going out for ice cream with you. Does Tuesday or Thursday at (whatever time) work for you?" "We're planning a trip to the park on Wednesday, could you join us?"
If that doesn't work, then reset your expectations. And your children's. They are unlikely to be disappointed unless you show them that you are.
3 moms found this helpful
L.A. answers from Austin on July 28, 2012
Can you take the kids and join her for lunch at work?
Maybe invite her to dinner at your home ,so she will not have to cook.
Invite her to breakfast at your home.
You may need to go to her. I know I am only 51, and I am exhausted after working all day. I can hardly wait for bed.
2 moms found this helpful
L.M. answers from New York on July 29, 2012
It sounds like your mother has a very busy lifestyle. It's unfortunate that she doesn't care to spend time with her grandchildren, but that's her choice to make. I know that it's difficult for you, but the more you push the issue the worse the situation will become.
My MIL did not work and enjoyed spending time with her granddaughters when she was alive before she became ill. Although she did not work, she had many clubs and activities that kept her busy, but she did make time for the girls.
1 mom found this helpful
L.L. answers from Rochester on July 28, 2012
My parents are retired and when they still lived here, they spent all kinds of time with my first child...it was their first and at that time only grandchild and I am their only child. Now they've moved across country for the weather so we only see them twice a year, for two weeks at a time, but that's nonstop visiting for the entire 2 weeks.
My in-laws work full time or more, have tons of grandchildren, are taking care of their own parents in caretaker roles, etc etc etc and they still find time to spend with the grandkids. They usually make it over about once a week, even if only for half an hour...and about once a month they stay for a few hours or we all go do something. I stop over at their house about once a month with the children.
I'm sorry your mom seems so distanced...there's something else going on that needs to be addressed besides her "busy schedule."
1 mom found this helpful
K.M. answers from Chicago on July 29, 2012
Both of my son's grandparents work full time, infact grandma is a genius in her field and is contracted out as well as a manager in her full time office and can easily work 60hrs/wk. We see grandma and grandpa on the weekends, maybe every other or so for a few hours, sometimes the day or for a sleepover. It just depends on the week, what is going on for all. We live about 10min away as well if that gives any perspective.
Flip note - my mom is one to live her own life and se the kids/grands when she can and is kind of like your mom in that regard. She told me point blank - I will not be a babysitter or day care. I am fine with that - we live in different states (but my sister and she live in the same state) and she sees my niece about once a month on average unless she is working - she travels for work for months at a time.
I think you need to realize that your mother has a life too and is trying to balance everything and instead of harping on her about seeing the kids how about you say, "Mom, you have been working so hard lately what can I do to help free up some of your time so we can visit?" Maybe it is as simple as grocery shopping for her and you all spend time together afterwards. OR WITH her.
1 mom found this helpful
S.A. answers from Chicago on July 29, 2012
My mother would tell your mom that she's missing out big time! My mom is a VERY involved grandmother. She doesn't work, but has Fibromyaligia (a debilitating disorder) that causes her to feel ill most of the time, but she is still very involved and spends loads of time with her grandkids. Her mother, my grandmother, worked full time and although we lived just one town over, we rarely saw them. She was exhausted from working, and they liked their Saturday evenings to go out with their friends. I really just remember seeing her on birthdays, holidays, and a very occasional Saturday or Sunday afternoon. My mom vowed to be a more hands-on grandma, and she is!
Maybe you could just frankly ask your mom why she doesn't make the time. I would just say "Little Johnny's still waiting for that outing you promised him on April 27th"
J.L. answers from Los Angeles on July 29, 2012
we used to live 2 miles from my mom and I think she took the time fro granted what she would see them. We now live about 20 minutes away and when she sees them she talks about how long it has been since she has seen them. But she doesn't make any effort to see them. My MIL has always been distant. Everything must be on her terms. It is a big deal if she ever makes herself available to watch my kids. Two weeks ago my regular sitter was out of town and I needed someone to watch my kids for a few hours for 2 days. MIL was actually able to. I think in those 2 days she realized how much fun my 2 girls are (ages 7 and 4) and all of the fun things they say and do. She asked to watch them the next week one day. which my husband oblidged to and we had to cancel (and pay for) the other sitter still. They live 45 mins away so I know that is a factor. But we are always inviting them to do stuff NEVER the other way around.
A.K. answers from Bloomington on July 28, 2012
My mom works F/T & my son probably spends the nite at her house , maybe once every few months & that's being generous.she will stop by & visit or stop by sporting events. My husbands parents are worthless grandparents.