Post # 1
My husband was adopted by his grandma partially because his mother was very young when she had him. Both his real mother and his grandma are a part of his life now. His real mother has always been very supportive of our marriage and wants to be involved in the planning and has offered to pay for an open bar which will end up costing a few thousand dollars. My father and mother are paying for the rest. I want to acknowledge them in the invitations but I am scared his grandma will get hurt. I feel like everything was fine before we were engaged and now his Grandma is acting really weird. She called just to tell us that she isn’t giving us a penny towards the wedding and we wont get a penny out of her until she is dead. (Ever since my fiance and I have been together we have never asked her for anything and she has never helped us out financially.) I was very offended and asked my fiance if he asked her for money and he said no. She calls my husband all the time and the first thing she always says is Did you for you had a mother? Nothing has changed since getting engaged, we still talk to her and see her just as much as before, the only thing is we talk to his real mom more now and see her more and I think she is jealous. I was talking on my phone and she heard me say the word grandma and flipped out on me, saying she is not his grandma she is his mother and she hates when people say that.(I was not talking about her lol I was talking about my grandma) She has also called a few times and asked if we hate her and if she is still invited to the wedding. I honestly don’t think we have done anything to make her feel that way and we always baby her and tell her of course and we love her and blah blah blah… but the more this goes on the more and more it annoys me.. and the more she fishes for attention, she has suddenly forgot my name and calls me addie when she knows my name is Ali and has called me Ali for years… she ignored me the whole time I was trying on dresses and was walking around talking to people. My husband wants to walk down with his grandma on one arm and his mom on the other and I think she is going to cause a huge scene at my wedding and try to make it all about her. I kind of feel like she wants to push our buttons so we tell her she is no longer welcome. We have never expressed our frustation with her to anyone but each other and I feel like I have to cater everything around her feelings which I dont think is right. I just don’t know what to do with her any more… I have already told my fiance she is not welcome in the bridal suite lol because I am too nice to actually tell her to keep her butt home. 🙂 We already give in and give her attention we refuse to let her know she is bothering us. I am not sure if that is the right thing to do.. Should we tell her that she is being weird and to knock it off?
Post # 3
Well I think you need to consider this from the grandmothers point of view. She raised your FI and now when the good stuff is happening and your FI no longer needs someone to emotionally and financially support him and raise him his mother strolls in and is given the role as “mum” and throwing in a gift that could be viewed by someone already upset as buying your FI’s love (offering to pay for the bar). This must be hurting her unbelievably and she herself probably hasn’t dealt with her feeling towards your FI’s mum and having to step up and raise her son for her.
And whilst you keep saying to her we love you etc etc your actions may be showing her an entirely different story. That she is replacable, that she isn’t your FI’s mother figure and that her daughter means more to your FI than her.
Honestly why doesn’t your FI talk to her. Thank her for taking him in and looking after him and how having her at his wedding would mean the world to him. And for him to open up about his birth mother and how he wants a relationship with her but doesn’t want to damage his relationship with her.
She is probably confused, hurt and feeling obsolete due to her daughter coming along and due to her age.
Post # 4
Do you think perhaps she is suffering from early stages of dementia or Alzheimer’s?
“The early signs of dementia are very subtle and vague, and may not be immediately obvious. Early symptoms also vary a great deal. Usually, though, people first seem to notice that there is a problem with memory, particularly in remembering recent events.
Other common symptoms include:
- Personality change
- Apathy and withdrawal
- Loss of ability to do everyday tasks.
there’s more info at the link. I’m not a Dr but it looks like it might fit. Hopefully not. good luck.
Post # 5
The thing about forgetting your name also made me wonder about dementia. Many people show early signs by doing things that are very out of character for them. Not saying it necessarily is dementia, but it could be a possibility.
Post # 6
@RedJezabel: We have actually.
Post # 7
@j_jaye: We have taken her feelings in to consideration more than I think we should. His grandma and his biological mother are really close now and we always do things as a family. I know I said recently became a part of his life but for the last 4-5 years we have all celebrated holidays together and birthdays together. I dont’ even think she knows that his biological mother is giving us money towards the wedding and if she does we are not the ones who told her. He always calls his grandma “MOM” (I think its just easier for me to write it with grandma and mom) and he call his biological mom by her name, he has never called her mom. I guess the short story may seem like its cut and dry that she just strolled in one day out of no where and took over the mom role… but thats not what happened. We were all close before the wedding planning and now she tells us we want to be a family with Eva and not her. My fiance has told her many times that he wants and needs her at the wedding. I know she is hurting and we do everything to make her feel wanted and included. She has been there for every step so far so she is in no way left out. We can accept that this is hard for her… but she is an adult and I think that we shouldnt have to walk her through her “healing process” or what ever she is feelings towards his biological mother. I think she needs to deal with by herself and stop trying to make us feel bad about it and believe me she does. I have cried over this so many time and just dont understand why it has to be like this. My parents are divorced and each re-married and both of my step parents are involved in the wedding and to the best of knowledge no one seems to care and if they do they have done a wonderful job of keeping to themselves. 🙂
Post # 8
Wow your FI’s grandmother sounds like my FMIL…painful. I don’t have any advice because I need some myself to really know how to get around this.
My FMIL is incredibly needy and insecure. Guilt trips and evil comments constantly. Not to mention she is the most selfish person I know. Arh I finally had my mini rant.
Post # 9
I second what pp’s said about dementia. I’ve had a handful of elderly relative who have had it, and it started slowly with them behaving oddly. I remember my sweet grandmother who was always so polite began saying very mean and hurtful things, making odd accusations. Might be something to look into.
But it really could also be that she is just having trouble dealing with the changes going on. I think it’s best to have your FI talk to her and try to get to the root of her feelings.
Post # 10
Out of curiosity, how old is this biological grandmother/adoptive mother? I notice that the older my grandmother gets, the more sensitive, more emotional, more paranoid, more irrational, and more liable to fly off the handle she becomes. We all have to walk on eggshells around her now. The best advice I can offer you is to please be GENTLE with this woman and her feelings, whatever you do. I know that her behavior is frustrating, but it’s something we all have to put up with when we have aging family members, especially when we owe them as much as your husband owes his biological grandmother/adoptive mother. My grandmother didn’t raise me but I will do whatever it takes to keep her happy because I respect her immsenely and think that she deserves to enjoy her final years to the fullest.
However, even if age is not actually the issue here, I can still see her point of view. She raised your husband and took care of him for all of these years. She did everything for him that his biological mother SHOULD have done but DIDN’T, and now all of a sudden the biological mother is swooping in and trying to be the mother that his grandmother already was. Even if the biological mother’s been in the picture now for the past four or five years, that’s still a pretty recent thing and isn’t equal to all of the years that your husband was growing up being raised by his adoptive mother. I know that your husband wants to acknowledge them both equally, but his biological grandmother IS his MOTHER and she deserves ALL of the credit for that–she shouldn’t have to share that with anyone else just because the biological mother suddenly decided to start playing the mother role after all of these years. It’s like any other adoptive parent, really. They consider themselves to be the actual parents of the children they raise, and rightfully so. Many of them get very hurt when/if the biological parents ever show up and start trying to take over the parent role. I think your husband needs to have a very long talk with his biological grandmother/adoptive mother explaining to her that he wants to build a relationship with his biological mother but that SHE (the grandmother) is his mother and that no one can ever take her place. I think he should also offer to do whatever it takes to make her happy.
PS: I notice you keep referring to your husband’s biological mother as “his real mother” and “his mom” but those titles don’t belong to HER–they both belong to his biological grandmother/adoptive mother because SHE’S the one who raised him, and that’s what a real mother/mom does. His biological mother is exactly that. Anyone can be a biological parent to a child but only a real parent takes care of one! The second best piece of advice I can offer you here is to stop thinking of the biological grandmother/adoptive mother as “his grandma” and start thinking of her as his mom because that’s exactly what she is and the very notion of being considered his grandma obviously offends her greatly.
Post # 11
I agree with @moonlightrose, especially her PS. I think while she may be overreacting you both maybe need to calm down and see it from her POV, she raised him, not his bio mother and now she gets the glory of a wedding when she didn’t have a hand in raising the man your FI has become. You should put all names on the invite or none, just because his mom isn’t helping pay doesn’t mean she doesn’t have every right to be on the invite since she is his mom. I would leave all names off then in the program thank all parents for their love and support over the years.
Maybe you can get his mom (grandma) a special gift now and tell her you didn’t want to wait until the wedding and wanted to let her know how much you both appreciate her, I think something like this is very nice, I really think she just fears being left out or pushed aside now that his bio mom is in the picture and she’ll be seen as grandma when she is really his Mom!