Tuesday, November 01, 2005

JUSTIFIED?

My youngest son has three children with two different moms. The oldest is the "usual granddaughter" and the other two are a three year old little boy and a two year old little girl. All three are sweet and adorable in my eyes.

I have a good relationship with "usual granddaughter's" mom. The mom of the other two.....not so good. He is still with her, for whatever reasons.

Last Friday "she" called and asked me to watch the two. I said "okay" for two or three hours because I had other things to do later. She said that would be great and she would bring them over. I made it clear that I could not keep them overnight this time. I am always hesitant to take them because she often doesn't tell my son that they are supposed to pick them up at a certain time and then I end up keeping them overnight because I can never locate them. Now, mind you I'm not making excuses for my son. He is not perfect either.

Back to Friday. She dropped them off at 3PM and said that she would be back by 5, 6 at the latest! She had a friend with her, so I had a witness this time! And she left her cell number this time! At 7 PM, I started trying to reach her. She didn't answer her phone. At 7:30 I tried again and got the message that the number was unavailable. At 8 PM, I dug out some car seats and loaded the little ones in the car to drive to the apartment where they live. They weren't there. I proceeded to drive to her friends apartment and she also wasn't there.

I don't mean to complain, but by this time I am quite angry. My blood pressure was probably out of sight, since earlier in the week when I was at the Drs. it was 197/98. Yes, I am on meds for it. To give you some idea of where I am coming from; three years ago I had quadruple bypass surgery after fighting CAD for 10 years and having had 3 heart attacks. I don't t tell people this for sympathy. Just stating the facts.

As the children and I were leaving, the friend showed up and told me that mom and dad were in the parking lot outside. We ran out and were able to catch them. I asked what happened and why she wasn't there on time to pick them up and why she didn't answer her phone or call me and give me an explanation. Her answer? "My phone battery was dead". It's always something with her. I said rather snidely that is why I don't watch these two as often as they would like me too. My son apologized and said thank you. She said nothing. I got in my car and left.

Fast forward to Sunday night about 6:30 PM. My son calls and asks me if I can watch the kids Monday from 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM. He has to work and she is supposed to be attending some class. I can only think it is some kind of class for the welfare benefits she receives, but I don't know that for sure. Anyway, I tell him that I have other plans already and remind him of how upset I was by the fiasco Friday night. He thanks me anyway and hangs up to try and line up a different sitter.

Now it's Tuesday and he stopped over to say "hi". He is obviously upset. I ask what is wrong and he tells me that she is angry and making things miserable for him since I wouldn't watch the kids on Monday. He states that he totally understands where I am coming from and she is just being "nasty about it."

Well, he is gone now and here I sit feeling guilty! And I know that I shouldn't feel this way. She has brought this on herself by not picking them up in the past when she said she would. Should I just forget about the past and continue to be used or do I stand up and say "ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!" ?

7 comments:

Connie and Rob said...

I am so sorry you are having such a rough time. It would be nice if you could watch your grandchildren and they would be picked up at the time you were given. This request does not seem unreasonable. Many, many people are not lucky enough to have grandparents much less someone who will take care of their child free of charge. She needs to start counting her blessings.
Connie

clew said...

I second that!!! In fact I just wrote a rant yesterday, about how we have virtually NO sitting options while other people are so unappreciative of how SET they are that it drives me crazy. Then I decided not to post it. Good thing, huh? We might be accused of conspiracy ;)!

martie said...

Oh Clew, I've been accused of a lot worse that conspiracy....by this very woman I wrote about! You bring your little one here....as long as you here to retrieve him at the specified hour or you call me and let me know what's going on...I'll watch him. Hugs to you!

naive-no-more said...

You know where I stand on this issue and why? I don't have any sympathy for their situation, largely because they've created it themselves.

I already think you do too much for them, so you probably don't want my opinion on the subject.

But, don't feel guilty!

Lori said...

This is a hard one since they are your grandchildren and you love them. But this woman sounds more than unappreciative.

I remember being VERY aware when I left my kids w/ their grandparents, which wasn't often as we all lived in separate towns.

You DO need to stand up for yourself. These children are HER children...and it sounds like she needs to set her priorities right. You cannot help how she deals with her life, but you can help how it affects your own. I don't think you're being unreasonable or selfish at all. You have to take care of YOU so don't feel guilty at all!

Bainwen Gilrana said...

Do NOT feel guilty. This woman needs to take responsibility for her own children. I can't even imagine pawning my own (hypothetical) kids off on someone like that! Sure, emergencies happen, but there are PAYPHONES for such occasions!

It's wonderful that these babies know Grandma loves them, but they're going to grow up wondering if Mama loves them. Stories like this really make me wonder why some people who want children and would be great parents have so much trouble conceiving, while people who are far too self-centered to be parents can pop out a kid every year. :-(

Nicole said...

It's hard not to feel guilty when kiddos are involved, especially ones that you love BUT at some point you need to stand up & make them responsible for their own. That's what being a parent is all about.

Tough love sucks but sometimes it's definitely necessary.

I hope it works out for all of you...especially the little ones. There is no reason for you to feel guilt over this though. Sounds like your a wonderful gramma...chin up.