PBS Life Part 2: Cut Off from the Grandkids

PBS, Life Part 2: Boomer Grandparenting

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According to the panel, Boomers are often wealthier, better educated, and younger looking, than their own grandparents. “My kids dress like I do, and they listen to same music,” says Coleman. Their advice? Be cautious: don’t give advice that’s not asked for. If you want to open up a dialogue, start admitting your own mistakes as a parent. To see the whole segment go here http://www.pbs.org/lifepart2/watch/season-2/boomer-grandparenting

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  1. Posted January 28, 2014 at 3:49 am | Permalink

    There’s definately a lot to know about this issue.
    I love all the points you have made.

  2. Anonymous
    Posted September 22, 2013 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

    How long are you going to let your self stay Prickley?
    A good family psychiatrists & medication can help.

  3. Anonymous
    Posted September 21, 2013 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

    What does Michaeleen Phd mean ? There is more to life than injustice collecting & critters in the head.

    What’s all this spam blogging?

  4. Posted August 31, 2013 at 3:59 am | Permalink

    Awesome issues here. I am very happy to peer your post.

    Thanks so much and I’m looking ahead to contact you. Will you please drop me a mail?

  5. ARJ
    Posted May 2, 2013 at 3:39 am | Permalink

    Both my son & dil use me 3 yr old granddaughter as a pon in dealing with geandparents on both sides. My hubby and I recognized it and told both of them, we are not going to allow it. We have not seen our granddaughter in 6 mos. they have even cut my daughter out of the picture ( the child’s only aunt, no uncles). My son, used us for cash, food and baby sitting while he was going through a rough patch. Then decided to discard us after he got what he needed. Since they are divorced and we still here nothing from either one of them. Thank you all for sharing, I’m praying one day thins will somehow get better. I am so looking forward to meeting my granddaughter again one day and reunite with her. The other grandparents don’t seem to see a problem with this as the grand child lives with them.

  6. JS
    Posted April 30, 2013 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    I am going through the same pain as all of you with a DIL who is mean and petty and keeps a list of greviences. We have supported their family but she uses us as pawns because she knows we love the grandchildren and they love us too. She will not let us see them anymore because she hates me. I at the same time will not take any disrespect and will also not allow someone else to have this power over me. And neither do I want to hurt and get depressed over this. I have decided to give my grandmotherly love to at risk children instead. And while I understand we are all in pain, I cannot succumb to this misery…I must transcend it by doing something positive. I will not be treated like a YOYO at the mercy of some young thing who decided when to pull the strings…I am a wise older woman and I will be around to share my wisdom with others, not my pain. Let us transcend this and look at how beautiful life is and what joy the Divine has given us…..and let us make the human family our family and not focus just on our family. We are all interconnected and there are many in need. Leave behind the pain and negativity with those that reject you and give your love and attention to those that need you. Get your power back….Blessings and Hugs….JS

  7. Posted March 3, 2013 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on anxiety. Regards

  8. donna
    Posted February 22, 2013 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

    Am so glad I know there are other grandparents out there experiencing this sadness, my heart goes out to everyone that has written here. I have a son and a daughter in law who are trying hard to cut us out of their lives and also our grandchildren of which we love and adore. We have tried to talk to them and continue to get the cold shoulder, we have begged to have the grandchildren over to visit and are made to feel like we are not good enough to do so.We try to include them in family dinners and events and birthdays, we ring with no response and text with no response and our hearts break not to be part of their lives. We are good people and my son and I were so close and now I feel like I dont even know him.Our dil is very close to her family and that is a beautiful thing but we feel like she thinks that is enough for her and does’nt want us in her life.I liked the comment on having a diary or journal to write in for my 3 beautiful grandchildren to let them know how much we love them and miss them and how much we want to be part of their lives.The hardest thing is that we dont understand or know what we have done wrong and hope one day we will have peace and love in our lives because your family is your life.

    • Anonymous
      Posted September 23, 2013 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

      Oops !

      One of my friend age 38 invited her parents from England to NY to visit her family. The same evening after they arrived she would not let them in her home & call the police on them. She accused her parents of child abuse & more. Her kids all witnessed this when she called the cops on the grandparents. Her father wrote a journal for each of his Grand child how much he & his wife loved them & how they were deprived of loving them. Each Grand child received a personal journal as there inheritance fifteen years later.
      Today the her kids refuse to see her.

  9. Kathy Castonguay
    Posted January 15, 2013 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    My life also changed 11 years ago when our son became involved with, engaged to, and married our DIL. From their wedding to the advent of our first and only grandchild, it has been a very painful experience. Friends told me to ‘ wear beige’ and so I never knew what the wedding was going to be like until the day of. We were allowed significantly fewer guests than her family. Her mother didn’t speak to me the day of the wedding and kept her distance? I have consulted with professionals and looked at my own behavior, my motives, etc. and after being yelled at when I accidentally spilled a small glass of soda on a chair on Christmas Day, I gave it about a week to think everything over. My son told me it was about more than my accidental spill..it was a cumulative build-up. I still don’t know the details. He did apologize for her behavior on Christmas and demanded that she apologize to me.Hers was a False Apology, as Daniel Lehmann calls it. I have had a mastectomy and follow-up surgery in the past 13 months and she never called me or sent me a card. Her mother treated her MIL the same way and a family therapist said the model existed and that it was likely generational. We tried to include her parents in holidays and they never reciprocated after we had them here one Easter. I’m willing to do my own work, but I honestly think I’m being scapegoated. I’m working on acceptance, becoming more independent, and growing my own life. It has been hell walking on eggshells for so long. I’m looking forward to more of the seminars, as well as taking some trainings in genograms.

    • Posted January 17, 2013 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

      Know that you did a good job and do not deserve this treatment. Focus on the good in your lives. Fill the hold with fostering/adopting children or grandchildren who desperately need and want love from a responsible adult like you. Move on and accept that these unjust individuals have been poisoned by a combination of negative media re parents/aging parents, married into controlling/competitive families that use alienation techniques to oust you……things which a good, caring person has no recourse other that to grieve and to accept the choices of their beloved children to cut them out. It is not easy to move on…..with love and to find ways to again feel joy. With best wishes for your “recovery” from this pain and grief caused by the choices of our adult children. DD

  10. Maria
    Posted January 7, 2013 at 1:20 am | Permalink

    I am also an estranged mom from my oldest of 3 sons. My life as well as the rest of our family’s life has changed. So Much since my son married my very manipulative controlling dil. My story as well is so surreal, sad but true. My son is in the military, while on deployment once again, she caused drama. I was asked by my son and dil that she needed me to come help her with their home and my 2 grandkids. I went to NC & did Everything to help my dil, of course I mainly did it for my son & my beautiful grandkids who are only 6 & 4 now. Everything was ok, tolerable. I did Everything like I was the mom to my grandkids, cooked, cleaned, took them to school, fed them. My dil only watches soap operas, goes outside to smoke cigarettes every 20 min & is a prescription drug popper.She is very thin,hardly eats, hardly fed my grandkids a meal, seemed more annoyed with them when they would ask her a question and scream at them. I understand, yes it had to be difficult to have my son on deployment, but these are your children, she is their mother, also she is bi-polar on top of everything else.She caused drama, like she is so well at doing. Of course she told all kinds of lies to my son, telling him all this while he was at war. I never met a more selfish person in my entire life. So thanks to her, my son has been back from deployment a yr ago this mth. since Jan 2012 and he still has never responded back to any of my emails, text messages, voicemails no response from him at all. He only very recently started sending text messages to the one son that lives with me . He keeps in contact with his little brother, but they are both military and thank god he does keep in touch with him. But for the rest of my family, he only has talked to his grandma a few times, no response to his aunts & some text messages to his grandma. We are All just absolutely in disbelief how he has basically turned his back on me, his mother. The mom who has Always been there for him. Back in 2007, this girl & her equally as manipulative crazy mother. Stole my grandkids from my oldest son, stole Everything and I do mean Everything out of his home, they left him literally with one chair. I had never seen him so despondent & the pain was excruciating to see him have gone through that. All he kept saying to his brothers and I were, they even took every picture of my kids off the walls, there are no pictures of my kids. That was Thanksgiving 2007, I didn’t want my son to be alone for the holiday, his favorite. I took time off from work as well as his 2 other brothers, youngest was in college at the time. I’ll never forget it, it was so incredibly sad to be in that home.Unfortunately, she stayed in his life, calling him of course and they eventually got back together. So fast forward to present and now as I write this, they have their home in NC for rent, they are moving to Hawaii for the next 3 yrs.,they are leaving today 1/7 Mon. And yes I didn’t think the pain could be any worse and Damn it, this Sux. My grandkids and I had the best time whenever we were together and they would laugh and laugh and we were so happy. This girl has stolen my son away from not only me but the rest of our family and now my innocent grandkids are ripped out of our lives. How do you forget all the lies this girl told about you in court, yes in court along with her mother and they had him driving back and forth from NC to Fl where her mother lives and me too. I love my son and my grandkids so much. I never deserved to be treated this way. I sent him a text message wishing him peace and love and much happiness in Hawaii. Much love to my grandkids and that we love & miss him. No surprise no response.

  11. Karen
    Posted December 31, 2012 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

    I have three sons and had excellent relationships with all of them. The oldest got married about 4 years ago, and I was happy to see my son with a partner he loved. However since their baby was born (over 2 years ago) there have been tensions in my relationship with her. I was never able to put my finger on the cause and tried very hard to remain supportive and loving in the background…not giving advice, not criticizing, etc.

    Although my son claimed that I was welcome to visit them (in another Canadian Province) I could sense that it was not really a mutual thing between him and his wife. Due to the distance, we would only see one another 2-3 times a year anyhow. Last summer we scheduled a visit and flew out to see them. When we arrived, my son told me that it would be better if we did not come; that his wife’s distress simply builds and builds before my visits; and that they would seek counselling and let me know when they could “reach out to me.” It’s now more than a year since I have seen my grandson. My heart is breaking! They visit her parents several times a year, but it has been made clear that I am not welcome in their home, nor can my son see me, or “it will only make matters worse”. I am so very very sad.

  12. Regina Smith
    Posted October 24, 2012 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    I have been estranged from mu daughter for over a year now and no longer see my Grandchilren! I also thought I was alone but the more I look into this I have seen that there are so many of us out there. The pain is more then I can bear sometimes. I am glad I have found this site. My heart is so broken!
    Thank you

    • Christine Oszurek
      Posted November 27, 2012 at 8:02 am | Permalink

      Regina, I have just been asked by my adult daughter to not contact her until I am “well”. This has gone on for 23 agonizing days. I have two grandchildren who I was very close to, seeing them almost daily. I wonder what they’re feeling and thinking that I have not come to see them in 23 days. I just read when parents hurt (in 2 days) and I’m also in therapy. The book has helped in a great deal and will rely on the principals in his book.

    • barb
      Posted January 13, 2013 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

      take them to court

  13. Pat
    Posted July 20, 2012 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    The pain is tremendous. It is worse than the grieving of a death, because as one mentioned, you can never heal. You have a child out there, no matter what the age, and they have your grandchild, and now, will not let you be a part of their life. Cut off! It is a very sick way to handle a situation. Sort of like the coward’s way to handle things, but at the same time, you have no idea what your child is going through in their mind to cut you off like that. That’s my story!

  14. Posted May 27, 2012 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    It is such a comfort to know that I am not alone, and that other people are going through exactly what I am going through. So many of you have listed the exact same treatment by your children that I have been receiving. I have cried when I’ve read your stories. My heart breaks for each and every one of you, and I understand why you are changing your wills, putting away pictures, changing how you do things in your lives. Our children and grandchildren ARE our lives, and when they decide that they no longer want to be in our lives it truly is the same as having a death – except that we aren’t allowed to heal from that death – it’s the death that just keeps on taking from us emotionally, spiritually, and health-wise. The pain never goes away as long as we are chasing after these children who have turned us out of their lives, because we are repeatedly rejected, over and over and over again.

    I have a friend who has been rejected by one of her daughters. My friend paid close to $30,000 to renovate her daughter’s house just to stay in her child’s good graces. Her other daughters were upset with her for spending all of that money on that one child, so she changed the family estate so that this one daughter would not get her monthly dividend from a farm subsidy until that $30,000 was paid for. So that daughter declared bankruptcy, and her attorney said that now her mother would have to pay her the money from that subsidy every month or she could sue her parents. This daughter brings all 3 dogs to her mother’s house to pee all over it on Mother’s Day, and the mother is too afraid to tell her not to bring them. I say, tell that spoiled rotten kid that she has already spent her farm subsidy on her house and that she can’t have any more! Tell her that the 3 rowdy, shedding, peeing dogs aren’t welcome at the house! But the mother has continuously caved in and is giving her the money every month because she doesn’t want to be alienated from her spoiled daughter. The other daughters are upset by this. I wouldn’t want to be blackmailed by my own child!

    As parents, we have to stand up for something or we become weak and our kids will stomp all over us. One of my children loves to control everyone and always have her own way. She has always hated anyone with any authority over her, teachers, parents, etc. Her dad rarely did anything to stand up to her, and I always had to be the disciplinarian. But the one time her dad spanked her, she quit eating and he ended up getting reported to the Department of Family Services because she told her teacher that he was forcing her to not eat. We were told that if her dad didn’t get counseling, and if I stayed with him, my daughters would be put in foster homes. He didn’t get the counseling, and he disciplined her again. So she quit eating again, he got reported again, and I had to file for divorce.

    I have sworn affidavits from 3 different psychologists that said that the daughter told them she was being abused by the father and that because of what she said, it was determined that he was not a proper parent. That the kids needed to live with me. Yet now that she’s all grown up and he is a multi-millionaire, she has decided that she wants all of the money! So she has told him and all of his family that I was the one who forced her to say all of that stuff to her teachers and counselors (who called DFS in the first place), and that I was the one who said all of those lies to the psychologists. The affidavits clearly state that my daughter stated those accusations. Yet now, when it is convenient for her, she changes her story.

    She has also made up a lot of other lies – things that were so completely untrue! And the amazing thing was that I actually HAVE legal proof that what she was saying wasn’t true. And I knew that I could have taken her to court to sue her for slander – I had enough proof to prove it! The only reason why I didn’t do it was because she was my daughter.

    But this poisonous child has also told lies about my other daughter, and has lied about me to this daughter. Knowing that her sister has told lies about her, this other daughter still chooses to believe her sister in regards to me and has told me that she has decided that she doesn’t want me to be her mother.

    Both children neglect me on Mother’s Day, and I’m tired of feeling sad on that day. I’ve decided that I need to find something positive and happy to do on that day so that I’m not thinking of what I don’t have. And tomorrow is my birthday, and I know that the two people who are so important to me won’t even acknowledge me on that day. So I’ve already got plans for how I’m going to spend the day, and I certainly won’t be worrying about whether or not they will contact me.

    I have learned that when someone doesn’t love you or want to be with you, it is important to learn to love yourself. You know that you will always love them, but it’s okay to not like them. And it’s important to not chase after them.

    • Posted January 20, 2013 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

      You are right about the issue of power and control. Once they think we are weak they get entrenched in rejecting us and making us suffer. Today my best friend told me I did not fail as a mother. HE failed as my son.

  15. julia
    Posted May 26, 2012 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    I have not seen my granchildren for nearly six months now,my heart thinks it is breaking at times.My daughter and i used to be close, but when she got married things started to change, her husband does not like me and her dad,she is our only child he thinks we have spoiled her, we have tried to help her and make her live bettermost parents want better for their children, but we have always brought her up to be respectful . He as turned her against us, he controls her every move tells her wot to wear wont let her go out anywhere unless its with him, wont let her wear makeup anymore.Listens into her phone calls, she now says that we dont belong in her family unit, she treats his mum like her mum they go to see her but never come over to see us. She never sends birthday cards now or phones me,I have good days and bad I never throught she would break my heart but she as on several occasions, My husband and I have now decided that we have think about us now we are not getting any younger maybe when the grankids are older they will remember us and get in touch again

    • Sue Wilson
      Posted August 21, 2012 at 1:17 am | Permalink

      My daughter and I were always close, she was my best friend. When she got married, I was often asked to look after the children which I did gladly. When I moved nearer (only temporarily) I was told by my sil that I wasnt wanted. My mum had just died, and my dad the year before. I was heartbroken. I was stopped from seeing them, assaulted by him, and the Police called to me, having listened to his lies about me. It is now 3 years+ since I saw them. I went to Court and he lied about me, the little ones would shout “dont go, we will never see you again”. Heartbreaking. I saw my daughter a few months ago, we arranged to meet, she looked withdrawn, drained, nervous, exhausted. His two sisters did the same thing to his father, stopping him from seeing their children for ten years. Unbelievable. I pray night and morning. Unless a person has gone through this they cannot understand the pain and heartbreak, and some wrongly assume that we the grandparents have done something to warrant this. Might I point out that is not always the case. It usually boils down to husband/wife causing this to happen for whatever reason – usually jealousy of the bond between grandparent/child and in my case my daughter. It is hell.

      • Anonymous
        Posted September 30, 2012 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

        I can relate with you Sue, I have a similar situation. My daughter and I were close, I thought. Her husband has committed several different illegal acts and then attempted suicide. After all that she has turned on me and my husband (not her father), because we don’t approve of his treatment to her and have told others what he has done. She is my only child and has 4 of my only granddaughters. She was fine as long as I was doing as she wanted and keeping kids and helping her out. But now she has totally turned on me and I assume she will cut me out of her life and the girls. They love me so much and would rather come to my house than any other relative. Sometimes I think they would come live with me if I allowed it. They are ages 5 to 9. They have lived with constant fights and turmoil at home and enjoy the peace and quiet at my home. I have tried to keep my daughter pleased just so I can continue my relationship with the girls but I feel that is coming to an end. It breaks my heart to think what she will tell them when they no longer see me. I feel like you do, she is jealous of the close relationship I have with the girls. I will pray for you and your family. Thanks for sharing and letting me know that I’m not the only woman out there that has been rejected.

  16. Rane
    Posted February 20, 2012 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

    I have never met my 2 year old grandson, I learned of his birth from my sister that he was born, it was on my son’s facebook page. They are now pregnant with the second grandchild. My son doesn’t talk to me, and when he does, it is very disrespectful. It has been 3 years since I spoke with my daughter in law. She has no intention of speaking to me for quite some time — another year or more??? Who knows? I don’t know why I am estranged from my son. He has accused me of many things that I do not think are true. Any ideas? I have none.

    • Lin
      Posted May 3, 2012 at 6:50 am | Permalink

      I am in the same situation! My 25 yr old adult son alienated me and only once in years has he given me any clues why. In an email he accused me of crazy things when he was small, such as not letting him sleep in, forcing him to take prescription for 2 weeks, silly stuff that was distorted. He did not allow me to his wedding, and now he has a one year old child I have never seen. His wife does not respond to my gifts or letters. Basically, I am dead to them and now they have moved and I don’t even have their address! I loved my son and gave him everything from soccer to special tutoring, private schools, skiing trips, everything I could. This parent alienation doesnt stop. I yelled at him when he smashed my stained glass window when he was 10 or so, but my crime does not fit the punishment. I am now 60 and had surgery recently and he could care less. I know I cannot make him care about me or see me. I feel in my heart I have nothing he wants. I am sad every single day and do everything I can to keep busy and be thankful for what I do have. I would trade everything I have for one sincere hug from my boy and one glance at my grandson. I always thought anyone who disowned their family had a good reason, but now I know that is not true. I am a good person and a good mom and I did nothing to deserve this behavior. If people like me come forward, we will see this is not as unusual as we think, and that be alienated does not mean we need to feel guilty or ashamed. I can only change my attitude in all this and I will not feel bad anymore for his distorted views and behavior.

      • Merry Jennings
        Posted May 6, 2012 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

        My heartaches for you; it hurt me to read your post and I am so sorry you are in so much pain. Your post, in a strange way, brought me comfort though. I have struggled with my relationships with my 2 sons for 14 years. In the beginning, there were just “hints” of something wrong, but now it has been nearly 10 months since the younger son has spoken to me and nearly 2 years since I’ve seen him, his wife, or my 4 year old and soon to be 3 year old grandchildren. My older son is only a bit kinder – not much – but a bit. I have 3 grandsons and 1 granddaughter. Two of my grandsons are named after my ex and his father. Yet, it was my father who was so instrumental in helping them throughout life and he gets no recognition. I have more to write, just not the time right now. I do want to say something, however, to parents who have LOST A CHILD TO DEATH. When my 3 year old son died suddenly, nearly 30 years ago – I thought surely it was the worst event I would ever face in my life. How could anything hurt as bad or as deeply as having a beautiful son just suddenly gone from life? I will mourn that beautiful child’s death forever and a day – but you know what? He did not choose to leave me, he had no control over the brain hemorrhage that stole him from our family. My adult sons do have control over our estrangement – they are choosing this – and there is no healing from it (or it is years in coming). The pain just goes on and on and on. Unlike my youngest’s son’s death, my adult children continue their lives, marry and have my grandchildren and the pain is so intense at times I think I will go crazy. So, yes….. unfortunately this is PAIN WORSE THAN THE DEATH of a child – it is the pain felt by being rejected year after year after year by my very alive adult sons. Some days I think suicide is just hours away, but yet I know I still have gifts to offer the world so I won’t go there. Of course, like many of you….. I do not want to die – I just want the freaking pain to end. I am sorry for all of us who endure this torture. I doubt moving to a foreign country and leaving no address or information behind about me would bother them. My energies have to go into the positive things I have built into my life.

        • Anonymous
          Posted October 4, 2012 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

          There is only one thing I wished for mykids…..that someday they would have kids too. What goes round comes around.


        • Anonymous
          Posted November 18, 2012 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

          I could not agree more Merry. Have been estranged from my son and his family 6 years now by their choosing. It is a pain much worse than death. Being rejected by someone that you thought you had unconditional love from is probably the most horrible and deep pain anyone could experience. And there is no getting it out of your system. I could accept a death but not rejection.

    • Posted May 28, 2012 at 7:35 am | Permalink

      I empathize with all these grieving parents and grandparents. My husband and I have been through the same problem in spades. In fact, I wrote a book about it called A SON IS A SON TILL HE GETS A WIFE: HOW TOXIC DAUGHTERS-IN-LAW DESTROY FAMILIES (available on Amazon.com). In our case, the son came from a devoted, loving family, and we had a terrific relationship until he married a wealthy, narcissistic woman who resented that relationship and immediately set out to torpedo it. We have four grandchildren, two of whom we’ve never been permitted to see. It’s a problem you never get over, no matter how hard you try to walk away.

  17. Norma Prince
    Posted November 21, 2011 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    I truly feel your pain. I am 69 years old, my husband is 76. We are torn apart by our 37 year old son choosing to abide by his wife’s insistence to separate him and their children from our entire family.
    Last Saturday we were visiting another grandchild, literally 10 minutes away and they were cognizant of this. They did not want to see or be with us. I am sick with heart – ache. Our son met us at a bookstore later and just does not want to speak of this estrangement. The separation, lonliness, is getting worse. I would like to scream, yell, confront her parents, go ballistic but my psychiatrist of 8 years tells me repeatedly to get real, to accept what we are fortunate to have, and to ignore the unpleasantness. It is truly so very difficult.

  18. K
    Posted August 10, 2011 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    I would like to know some books I can buy to read to get through this. I have 4 grandchildren that I have not seen in over 2 yrs. They have kept them fro me. My 2 ED’s have really ganged up on me, and they have no reason. They have little petty excuses. They are both disrespectful, and hold me to a higher standard. Everyone else can be themselves and have their own opinions. But not me, everything I do and say is twisted and turned into an ugly lie. It has been the most painful journey of my life. I miss the kids. Its not their fault. They have been ripped from our lives. I have been grieving for over 2 yrs now. 3 out of the 4 dont even know me. I have done nothing but try to guide and help. I get told I wasnt sincere. We paid all the bills, and bought clothes, food, babysat. I just dont get it. If someone knows any great books to buy. I would love to hear from you. Thank you. K

    • Terry Keith
      Posted October 4, 2011 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

      Wow. I thought I was the ONLY one who is facing this problem of having the grandchildren taken away. One thing I have done is keep a little journal for each grandchild. I write my memories and songs that we sang together. Any fun, happy memory I write it for them. I know that one day it will be a treasure to them. I myself was taken away from my beloved grandmother after a divorce. I reunited with her as a young adult. My feelings for her were planted in my heart as a young child, and those feelings returned to me when we reunited. I was able to be there for her in her last years, and I wouldn’t take anything for that gift. That is no consolation for what we lost, but I have to believe that in some strange way the years without her actually caused me to treasure her love even more. Take courage, K, it’s horrible now but God will make a way.

    • Bea
      Posted February 13, 2012 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

      I don’t know any books at this time, but I can tell you that I truly feel your pain and I am sorry that you must endure this sorrow. I, too, have not seen my grandson in nearly 3 years and have never seen my grandaughter. The grief is indescribable and paralyzing at times. I try to surround myself with the wonderful people that love me and volunteer in my community. Be kind to yourself and find something beautiful, if even for a moment, in every day. Life is fleeting and we mustn’t let them take more than they already have.
      I wish you Peace.

    • Merry
      Posted May 6, 2012 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

      Just know you are not alone. It is a most awful hurt though. We love our grandchildren as much as we loved our own babies. I can’t do anything right in the eyes of my children either. Every gift, every meeting, every breath I take they find fault with. I will always be wrong. What about keeping a notebook for each grandchild – writing daily or weekly of your love and thoughts for them. When you pass away or they become adults, they can “find” (be given) the notebooks and will know you DID love them and cared. Sometimes I wish I could have the part of my brain labeled “children and grandchildren” lasered out – erased, so the pain would go away. I am so sorry. Just know when you go to bed at night, there are many other parents going to bed with that same heartache. We all care about one another.

  19. Georgene Weiner
    Posted July 17, 2010 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    Dear Dr.Coleman,
    I read “When Parents Hurt” with great interest and enlightenment, sharing many passages with my husband. Having acted upon almost all of your helpful suggestions, however, our estranged son and daughter both (40, 37yrs. old respectively, remain estranged from us and deny us any possibility of seeing our grandchildren. Our third child is a twin sister to our daughter and remains close to us. The pain and anguish that come from not being able to see our grandchildren is, at times, unbearable. We are a loving couple, married 43 years. Our estranged children will not tell us why they have separated and have refused intervention from well-meaning family and friends.
    We are quite distraught, as we have apologized–even though we don’t know what we have done to cause such a rift.
    Can you help?

    Thank you ,
    Georgene and Allen Weiner

    • Madelaine
      Posted November 7, 2010 at 5:19 am | Permalink

      I can surely understand the idea of daily pain which is almost overwhelming with the sadness of being cut off from grandchildren. I am a therapist, and the blessing of that is that I can view it through a different lens. However, even through that lens, grandchildren are such a special gift…and the ache of their loss is often unbearable. I miss so much my daughter and, in some way, seem to be able to better understand her own pain. However, she is 30 years old, and has to be responsible for every choice she makes.

      My grandchildren and I are very close in just the few long visits we have had together. There are many ways this is evidenced, not the least of which was my grand daughter (when my daughter and son-in-law allowed a three hour visit when they came to my state), practically broke out of her carseat as we met in the parking lot, and she was yelling, “Granna…when are you coming to my house again?” Her little three-year-old hand grabbed mine, and never let go until we left. In those minutes and hours, I prayed so hard that she might somehow know of my love for her, for I had only that time with her. We have a very strong bond, and have had since her birth. My son-in-law becomes angry that when I have gone there, she wants to be with me a lot, as any normal grandkid does, and tries to draw her away from me because (in his words), “She is obsessed with you!”

      During my last visit, I noticed with extraordinary pain, that my grand daughter seemed very aware of his trying to split us and , even at her tender age, so poignantly tried to “caretake” both of us. As you might imagine, there are marital issues, and in that area my daughter is fairly dependent.

      In any case, I am almost 67…and I pray with gratitude daily that Creator has a plan for all of this, and has given me an opportunity to grow through such sadness and missing.

      Letting go is the hardest journey here.

One Trackback

  • By Gaven Vanetten on November 18, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    Gaven Vanetten…

    wow, awesome article post.Really thank you! Awesome….

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