“I never see my grandchild”

I was delighted when my son’s wife had her first baby. I had been hoping for a grandchild for so long, but all it has led to is tears and rows. We’re never asked to visit and if we call it is made obvious that we are unwelcome. I have held the baby only twice, once at the christening and once when I lifted it from its pram as it was crying. For this I was sharply rebuked. I asked for a photograph I could put up at home, but it has never materialised. If we buy gifts they are acknowledged with a grunt and we never see them used. I used to feel really close to my son but he either doesn’t care enough to help or is afraid of his wife’s reaction if he does. Her parents, who I know and like, have constant access to the baby and I try not to be jealous, but this is breaking my heart. Anna

Denise says:

I wish I could say your problem is unusual. Sadly, it isn’t and I wish some young mums would realise that one day it will be them longing to hold a grandchild and another woman who may withhold it. I think you should discuss this with your son and ask him to help ease the situation. I wonder too if the other grandparents, who you know and like, might be willing to help. Be careful not to criticise their daughter, but let them know how much you long to be involved, even though you completely understand that a baby can only have one mum. It may be that your daughter-in-law is just overwhelmed with the responsibility of new motherhood and will relax with time. If not, remember that one day that baby will have a mind of its own and will know it has two grandmas.

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