My mother and DD's relationship - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 03-05-2003, 07:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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here's some background, my mother has been coming to see DD (2 hour drive) once a week for 8 months. DD really loves it when she comes, so much so that for the longest time she wouldn't even nap when she was here. My mother is opening a coffee shop at the end of this month, she asked me if I could bring DD up once or twice the first few weeks so she doesn't miss her and the she would "try" to resume coming down to see her. I don't have a problem bringing her up to see her for a few weeks but it seems to me that trying doesn't neccessarily mean doing and that DD is going to be sad she doesn't come. And I am concerned that no matter what we tell DD she won't hear what we tell her about why grandma isn't coming and will feel rejected.
I know my mom is busy and it will intensify with the opening of her cafe but I am looking out for DD's feelings. Obviously I can't make her come to see her and she gets very defensive when I mention it, says I am trying to make her feel guilty which honestly I am not. I do not need her to come watch DD, I have a sitter that comes to our home, I am just thinking about how my daughter is going to feel. Am I wrong here?
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#2 of 6 Old 03-05-2003, 08:51 PM
 
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I would think that if the possibility of 'rejection' isn't mentioned to your dd, then maybe making it into an event of going up (over?, down?) to your mother and her cafe with dd would make it exciting and dd wouldn't think anything bad about it. Maybe say to your dd that you all are 'going there to help', her included. Does she like to 'help'?
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#3 of 6 Old 03-05-2003, 09:48 PM
 
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My first thought is to cut your mom a little slack. She obviously loves coming to see her granddaughter. She makes the two hour drive and back every week, right? And the fact that she gets defensive about the subject tells me that she already feels guilty.

Your mom's going to open this cafe, right? And it's going to make her visits less frequent, right? So what do you want her to do about it? If she even comes once a month, it's a lot more than some kids get to see their beloved grandparents.

Of course, your DD doesn't know that, and there's no denying her feelings. Make it as easy as possible for her, but give your mom a break.
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#4 of 6 Old 03-05-2003, 10:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by sohj
I would think that if the possibility of 'rejection' isn't mentioned to your dd,
That is an excellent point, thank you

Quote:
Originally posted by nataliekat
My first thought is to cut your mom a little slack. She obviously loves coming to see her granddaughter. She makes the two hour drive and back every week, right? And the fact that she gets defensive about the subject tells me that she already feels guilty.

Your mom's going to open this cafe, right? And it's going to make her visits less frequent, right? So what do you want her to do about it? If she even comes once a month, it's a lot more than some kids get to see their beloved grandparents.
This is true and if she hadn't established this regularity it wouldn't be so much of an issue. You are right, I should cut her some slack but that feels like it is at my DD's expense.

Quote:
Of course, your DD doesn't know that, and there's no denying her feelings. Make it as easy as possible for he
This I will do.
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#5 of 6 Old 03-06-2003, 12:38 AM
 
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I agree with what has been said. Try not to project the disappointment onto your dd and she probably won't feel "rejected." My 3-yo dd has one set of grandparents that live in the next town, and another set that live across the country. She is equally excited whenever she gets to see either set, and doesn't feel like the ones who live far away love her any less.

I also agree with the idea of seeing if your dd can "help" your mom in her cafe. That will probably make her feel extra special and important.
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#6 of 6 Old 03-06-2003, 01:02 PM
 
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Don't borrow trouble. Your dd may not even notice. Time is pretty irrelevant at that age, and it also may not even occur to her to feel rejected. Finding other things to talk up (like helping Gramma open her cafe) may make the transition a breeze. Talk up how exciting it is for Gramma to open a cafe (is it a lifelong dream come true?) and how happy you are for your mom. If and when your dd asks why Gramma is not coming to see her as much, you can refer back to earlier conversations about the new and exciting adventure Gramma is on.

My dd and I shared a home with my sister from the time dd was 9 months until she was 4 1/2. Her aunt was a co-parent to her and when she got married and we all moved, I worried dd would grieve terribly, but she didn't. She handled it very well. She misses all the folks from there, including her aunt, and looks forward to visiting with them, but she has not been traumatized or felt rejected at all. She was very excited about the wedding plans, the wedding, and being in it. She was also excited about the move, starting a new school and being close to her grandparents. For a kid who hates transitioning from one daily activity to the next, she does stupendously with huge life transitions!

Something else, you can try buying two copies of some of your dd's favorite stories and have a storytime once a week and do it over the phone if your mom cannot make it down that week. Photo albums, videos, tape recordings of your mom singing, reading, or even just talking can also help. And vice versa.

SMC to Sophia, age 15, and Eleanor, age 9, and mother hen to too many nursing students to count!

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