We have two adult sons that do not visit or bring our grandchildren to see us. What should we do in this situation?

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My husband and I are in our early 50's. We had our 2 sons at a young age. Both are married now and each one has a son under 4 yrs old. Our younger son (32), dated and married the only girl he ever dated. She never warmed up to us. Before their child came along, she would always make excuses for them not being available for any type of family get together. They always had time for her family though... our feelings have been hurt SO much by them. Our son doesn't stand up for us. We were not invited to their wedding, baby shower or told about the birth. He lives 20 miles from us and we have not seen or talked to them in 4 years. Many attempts have been made, with no avail. Our oldest son (33), has a similar wife (who would believe this could happen 2x in one family!). She also prefers her family during the holidays etc over us. They would stop by for a short time, saying they have plans with her family. We were allowed to see their son "briefly". They live out if state (6 hrs away). Her family lives in our area. We have been told they make trips home without telling us. We are heart broken. We have tried to talk to our son about all of this (he's a music pastor!!)... and he turns a deaf ear... we are trying to go forward with our lives... but it's hard, especially around the holidays. When people ask how our sons are, it's embarrassing to tell the story... people think WE must have done something to them. We raised them well, raised them in church, had a normal childhood. Nothing out of the ordinary. So, the Lord has a reason for allowing things to happen the way they do, we just hope one day, this will pass. Trying to be optimistic, but honestly... we aren't. Any positive response would be greatly appreciated.

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Sandsue yes this happens a lot. Not only sons do it but daughters do it too. Children just get a different life going. A suggestion could be that maybe if you invited them over to celebrate group birthday everyone gets a cake... who says Christmas has to be celebrated only on Dec 25? Invite them over to dedicate the new set of dishes or its smore's night at grandpa's house! Make-up a celebration! We have themed potluck night and everyone brings something to go with the main course -- we don't do it often but just enough to make it fun followed with board games... oh and phones need to be put in the phone basket.
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I have more conversation with my children and grandchildren via social media. Almost everyone these days has WiFi. There are inexpensive laptops and desktop computers. Cell phones as well. Texting is a private read between sender and reader. I like this method and I don't like my son's girlfriend. Skype is a great way to see and talk to the innocent grandchildren who have to endure the missing of grandparent(s) because of their selfish adult parents. I would even reach out to the parent(s) of the in law. Ask them do they know why have they been told something that you can defend. Even if you offend your child and in law, it can't be worse than what's going on now. You will be amazed at the lies that can circulate. A wrong decades ago can be told as if it happened yesterday. Remember, life never tells us the whens or whys.
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Talkey,
Although I respect your opinion it doesn't mean I agree or disagree completely, I'll tell you my reasoning later. Being new on this site I'm not sure if this is the forum to go back and forth explaining why we feel the way we do. Unfortunately I don't have time now with working so much, guys are out hurt and the shifts have to be filled. Reading your initial comment the first 4 lines say a lot about why you feel the way you do, sure it happens that way however it's not the " normal " with mature adults, for NO REASON. Parents have every right to fail before being disrespected/ignored by their children, good parents who do the best they know how to do, in most cases as their children have children don't display the behavior you're claiming " happens all too often "
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Daughters are just closer to their parents than sons. I have two boys and two girls. We were very involved in daughters kids lives while they lived close but not our sons . But I think you should have an honest conversation about what your son and daughter in law have issues with you about. Perhaps they think you are too legalistic or too political or whatever. I know younger Christian's are much different in their thinking than we were when we raised them ( in a Christian bubble). But who knows- people are just weird - I gave s son that is and he stays away. He is not married but is very anti anything we are- lol. Other three adult kids are fine with us. I just pray and leave it up to God to heal.
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Mostlyme, I have to strongly disagree with you about adult children disrespecting, ignoring &/or mistreating parents for no reason. There are countless stories on this site where parents stood by their adult children or even supported them financially and then those same children turned their backs on them & left the parents' care to another sibling... and some won't even call or visit. There are selfish, self-absorbed people, some of whom just happen to be our children and siblings.
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Sounds like the family of origin absorbed the spouse of one of its siblings into the family of origin. But of course this leaves outside the relatives/family of the absorbed spouse. I understand that is some cultures the daughter upon marriage is actually considered part of her husband's family, and no longer connected to her family of origin. Didn't a princess of the Japanese imperial family actually lose her family connection and title when she married a commoner recently? So it would seem that the emotionally dominant partner might actually determine which family his or her spouse will belong to.
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Dear Grandparents,
I hear what you're saying and feel for the both of you, don't take this personal but there's at least two sides to every story, it's only your side we're reading. I happen to believe, contrary to many that blood is thicker than water, I'm puzzled why this is happening with both son's. Mature adults don't disrespect, ignore or mistreat anyone for no reason mainly their parents. It's a fact you can't change anyone and advisable not to even try because it usually backfires, that means you and your husband need to take a long hard look at yourself, being gut level honest and see where you could make some changes, not to change who you are or put a crack in your value system to be accepted by both sons & families, but we all can make positive changes it usually isn't thought of until faced with situations like yours. Not to be invited to your sons wedding, the baby shower, informed of being a grandparent and so on isn't done by accident it was intentional, it's time for you and your husband to find out why. Before doing that take a look at you, write down the good the not so good and the things you need to change, keep a diary and in a couple weeks ask each other if you'd be a friend to one another if you weren't married. Don't share the things you're working on with each other let the change be noticed, you'll feel so good about who you've become instead of as you said, trying to talk with your son you'll make it a point to stress to your sons how important it is for you and your husband to sit down with them separately and have a from the heart conversation. I'm not picking on you, I only have you to write to. I wish you and your husband the very best.
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Ahhh, happens all too often. What you're going thru or adult children holding little ones hostage so that grandparents do/give them what they want so they can see the little ones. I've told mine there are kids on every corner, and I love my own so very much, but I will move on if put in that position. Some family dynamics recently have made us all just a little distant; almost daily talking/interaction is now maybe weekly. And I'm being excluded from some 'in-the-know' stuff. God love them all, & I do too, & they'll prob come around eventually. I say be kind to yourself & move on. You can continue loving them from afar. Been there before, & I'm still ok.
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Sorry, hit the enter button.

My gkids are growing up and I don't know them. My son will NOT stand up to his wife. In fact, he created this "monster" and she's no monster, it's just that WE are not family, her family is. I know my son loves me. But I am really unhappy that once they got established and settled, we were no longer "necessary".

I had some emotional issues a couple years back. My DIL totally did NOT get why I was struggling and instead labeled me as unfit to be around the kids. So I have not been allowed to really be with them. She won't talk about it. Son won't. They too have come to town and not called or visited.

My dad and then FIL died within 8 months of each other. DIL didn't want my son to leave her, so he didn't come to the funerals. HER great grandfather, who was evidently a real jackass died and they flew 3000 miles to be at a drunken "wake" for him. This rankled--but my hubby will not allow me to speak ill of anyone, so I keep my mouth shut.

I don't have any suggestions. I wish I did. Just letting you know that you are not alone.

On the plus side, I have 4 sons-in-law who are better, kinder and sweeter to me than my son is. I love these guys to pieces. So, my feeling is, yes, I have lost a son, but I have gained 4 other sons.

I hope someone comes up with some great answers to this. I try not to think about how much I miss my boy, but it's to the point I just can't even talk about him w/o crying. (He's absolutely fine with his dad--and so is my DIL. It's me that's the problem).

My heart aches for you, it really does.
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Sue--

A daughter's a daughter the whole of her life, a son is a son 'til he gets him a wife....you ever hear that old saying? In my life and experience, it is very, very true. Not always, of course, but enough so that it stings when it happens to you.

I love my DIL, very much. She was close to me when she needed me (Med Student, poor, needed free babysitting, so I'd fly anywhere they were to stay for a month or so to help out)....once she got a "real" job...I was yesterday's news.

My son is 100% devoted to her and her welfare and happiness. Her job is grueling and since she's an anesthesiologist, she needs to get her sleep and be fresh every work day. They have a nanny and housekeeper, my son does all the childcare and meals and house stuff. Oh, and he's an attorney, so no slacker there! No doubt my DIL works hard. And she is amazing. BUT, my son can see nothing wrong with them coming to town (they've opted to live in a state about 800 miles away) and seeing only her side of the family. They basically support 3 family members of hers, literally, like they're on the payroll. If I want to visit, I pay my own way and usually stay in a hotel, even tho their house is enormous.

I have not brought this up with anyone but my hubby. I ache to have any kind of a relationship with my son.
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