Woman plans for Christmas without mother and daughter
My just-married daughter has informed me we will no longer celebrate Christmas together because her husband always spends it with his mother and wants to continue doing it that way.
When she saw my expression, she told me not to look so hurt because if her daughter (from a previous marriage) sees me upset, she might get upset that she’s not invited to go to California when my daughter, son-in-law and their daughter do. My granddaughter isn’t invited because she isn’t my son-in-law’s daughter.
When I told my daughter that the girl will grow up with a lot of resentment, she told me not to worry about it and it isn’t going to happen.
Abby, what can I do? I don’t want to see my granddaughter hurt.
Dear Grandma Becky:
You shouldn’t let your grandchild see how upset you are. Expect to make plans without your daughter in the future. That she would allow her to be excluded because the girl isn’t her husband’s child is disgraceful.
Assuming your granddaughter lives close, why don’t you have her stay with you while her mother is away? The greatest gift is the gift of self, and neither of you will be alone.
My parents have been divorced for 17 years, but my father appears to have trouble letting go: Although he never wore a wedding ring, he wears a widower’s band, and he tells people he “lost” his wife. Recently, he talked to my brother about getting a tattoo of my mother’s name. Suffice it to say, my brother told him it was inappropriate. Are there resources for coping with divorce? He won’t consider therapy - I’ve tried.
Worried Daughter in New Jersey
Your father may be ashamed he is divorced, which is why he prefers to imply that he’s widowed.
I agree with you and your brother that the tattoo would have been inappropriate. Discuss your concerns about your dad’s mental health with your brother because he may need a physical and neurological evaluation.