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Posted on August 1, 2018 by Christine Crosby in GRAND reader, grandparents, RECONCILE

My thoughts on “How Can I Reconcile…” From a GRAND Reader

In a response to our post, How Can I Reconcile When I Don’t Know What’s Wrong a GRAND reader shared her thoughts. We have removed her name for obvious reasons.

I’ve been on the other end; my mother died December 27, 2017.  She was emotionally abusive most of my life.

I was born to her stepdaughter, at age 17, from her husband’s first marriage of whom she sarcastically said “I married Bill; I “got” Shirley”.

She was resentful of us both and we were merely obligations that were never truly  hers and she never let us forget it and that is how she treated us personally and with others as well.

My biological mother obtained her as a stepmother at age 8. Never once did I hear “I love you” from her nor get encouragement for my 59 years. (My adoption took place at a year of age.)  She told me she had good memories of my first 6 years; I assume after that none.

I spent the decades always trying to please her and it never happened. My children tried as well. We DID call and visit her as much as we could, but it was never enough. She did not reach out to us near as much.

I finally told her directly a few years ago why we didn’t call or visit much anymore as it was due to how we always get treated, etc. She could not accept it nor the fact it was her ever.  She was involved in major life events for the most part and always pretty much ruined them in one way or another, if nothing else by her negativity, sarcasm, criticism, and mean treatment.

So… it could be these grandparents’ fault and they either cannot accept nor see it or both.  I always had to coach my kids as to how to handle their grandmother and tried not to teach them to always be respectful and so forth. I also told them once adults they would need to forge their own relationship with her.

“So.. grandparents sometimes reap what they sow and have sown.” 

She spent the years consistently pitting my sister and I against each other (she was born to her and therefore in her eyes the favored one and truly her’s always; she left her everything in her will.); my husband and I, my kids and I and myself and others.  She was toxic and I came to the point in which I was totally tired of it over the course of my many decades of life and I needed to disengage from her a few years ago after telling her directly why we don’t visit or call, etc.

Again I feel we could have visited or called daily and it would not have been enough or good enough.  So.. grandparents sometimes reap what they sow and have sown.  Sadly, her passing has not caused my children to grieve their grandmother. It is somewhat a relief to finally be free of it all to be totally honest.  I had the only grandkids for her as my sister does not have children and will not.  She showed me what to do and not to do and what to say and not.

I have handled things much differently and enjoy a wonderful relationship with each of my three adult children along with two who have a child each so far. We interact quite frequently in various ways and I try to tell them I love them often and send encouragement along with providing it in any and every way I can sincerely.

I decided I would do things differently while growing up at home.  So it’s possible for these others that it started way back when.  I think it important to talk with and ask their adult children. I wish my mother had. She asked and talked to many others complaining and so forth about it when she should and needed to ask me.  Again these grandparents/parents of adult children need to be ready and able to accept the truth and facts if they do.

Thanks for allowing me to share,

(Name withheld by publisher)


Click here to read original article – How Can I Reconcile When I Don’t Know What’s Wrong

If you have a comment to share, please send to editor@grandmagazine.com



Christine Crosby

About the author

Christine is the co-founder and editorial director for GRAND Magazine. She is the grandmother of five and great-grandmom (aka Grandmere) to one. She makes her home in St. Petersburg, Florida.

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