Well today of all days you know what hit the fan and it looks like we won't be speaking to my FIL anymore. After years of being given the cold shoulder by FIL and his wife we finally spoke up and it didn't go well. The whole family lives really close and they lavish attention, money etc. on the other sibling and grand-kids and treat us like we hardly exist. I even got involved and asked why we don't ever get invited to things, why they don't make any attempt at a relationship with our kids and why they never return our phone calls. Between being yelled at and hung up on I gathered that FIL is really mad at dh for a decision he made 7 years ago and just can't be around him anymore. He never showed ANY signs of being upset about this thing and actually supported dh with this decision in the beginning.
He told me that our kids are out of control and that the other grand-kids are easy. The ONE time they took our kids it didn't go well but that was two years ago and they have just written them off ever since. Mind you the kids were 4 and 2 at the time. Then FIL listed all the things that are going wrong in his life (we have been being as supportive as can be, phone calls, cards, invites to dinner & camping etc.) and acted like it grants him the right to be rude to us. How dare we say anything to him about his treatment of us when xyz has happened to him. I tried explaining that our lives are no picnic either but he wouldn't ever know that because he NEVER picks up the phone to call us or returns our calls either. I kept trying to reiterate that it's fine if he feels the way he feels but we can't take anymore of the cold shoulder, he can be open with us and we won't be mad we just want to know. We do feel he is being a little insensitive especially toward me and our kids who have done nothing but be kind and nice to him.
So what I finally did was leave him a message because he wouldn't pick up the phone and told him that we love him and we understand if he doesn't want us in his life - that's ok he can just let us know. I told him that we have tried to show him we love him and care and that we think he is an awesome person and would love to have him in our life but the ball is in his court and he can call us when he is ready.
We are feeling SO hurt and the kids are old enough to get what's going on too. Where do we go from here? Anybody else in a similar situation? What do we do about birthdays and holidays? Right now we feel like we really need our space.