Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Good Deeds with Bad Consequences

God help me, I'm one Facebook insult away from losing it.

As I've written about many times before, my husband and I have given up most of our dreams and aspirations (and our entire life savings, home equity and retirement funds) to raise two of our granddaughters.  The grandmother of the youngest seems to have given her family the impression that we wrenched the child out of her grasp and have been holding her hostage ever since.

About once every three months or so, usually around a holiday or birthday, Granny sends me a Facebook message asking if she can pick the child up for a day or two.  We almost always comply without hesitation.  There have been very few times we already had something planned, but in those cases I have always suggested the following weekend, and always make it clear that we can work out a different time if necessary.  Much more often though, Granny cancels because she doesn't have money to buy gifts for whatever holiday she's trying to celebrate.  And I'm left to make excuses to the child, and often to smooth over the disappointment.

Daddy pays no child support.  Never has.  Actually, many years ago we loaned him a large sum of money to "start a business", which nearly resulted in criminal charges against us.  Details are unimportant to the story, but it does lend credence to the saying "No good deed goes unpunished."  Daddy never arranges his own "playdates".  He lets Mama do all the work and he tags along.  And sometimes he brings his girlfriend-of-the-month.  Good parenting.

Granny likes to post on Facebook every time she has plans to pick up her granddaughter to show the world how wonderful and devoted she is to the child and how much her granddaughter loves and lives to spend time with her.  (Lots of embellishment goes on over at Facebook--or as I like to call it, "Fantasyland".)  Granny's sister seems to enjoy posting nasty comments about how "they" don't let her see Granddaughter often enough.; Granny loves her granddaughter so much she "deserves to see her more'; and how terrible it is that she isn't allowed to spend more time with her.  Somehow Sis has been led to believe that Granny isn't being allowed to see her granddaughter as often as she'd like, rather than the truth--that Granny sees her as often as she wants.  No more, no less. It's all very much like repeated slaps to the face.  I don't wish harm to come to anyone (most of the time), but if these people dropped off the face of the earth I doubt I'd lose any sleep over it. 

I don't even feel that I can defend myself against these unfair comments.  I don't want to create an unpleasant atmosphere.  But I'm sick of feeling attacked for doing nothing more than taking on the responsibilites of others and arranging "playdates" with those who couldn't be bothered to do the hard work associated with raising a child, and often having to be the voice of reason who encourages the child to go spend time with these people when she'd much rather be doing something else.

There's a remote island somewhere on this beautiful earth and it has my name on it.  I hope I find it.  Soon.


  1. Hang in there! We know the truth (as I suspect does Granddaughter by now). I hate to think of what your granddaughters' lives would be like had you not taken them in. Your reward is waiting for you in Heaven (where it really counts). Love you!

  2. I know how you feel except I am not the grandmother I am the mother. My children dont really like going over their fathers because he leaves them with his mother (who shows no interest in her grandchildren) when hes off at work instead of leaving them home with me or at least where they are comfortable. I find my reward in knowing that my children know who loves them and they know that I have their best interest at heart. I am sure your granddaughter loves you and she knows who has her best interest at heart. She wouldnt be happy any other place. Keep being the Grandmother that you are, love them both, and your rewards will come when you see the accomplishments in their lives because you helped to make them happen. Much love to you for being the grandmother that you are. If only my children had a grandmother like you. . .

    1. Sorry it took me so long to respond--I could never get the reply function to work (user error, most likely). Thanks for leaving me such a thoughtful comment. I'm sorry that your ex and his mother don't treat your children with the love they deserve. I can imagine how frustrating that is for you. Your children are fortunate to have such a loving mother who wants only the best for them.