frustrated grandparents
05/31/2008 at 23:07 PM

   we are grandparent taking care of our granddaughter on thursday, friday, and saturday.  mom is single and works.  but when she gets off work she thinks its okay for her to go out with friends and leave baby with us.  comes home drunk and thinks its no big deal.  she does this with the other grandma also.  we have tried telling her that she needs to stay home and help with baby, her response is to stop telling her how to raise her child.  I feel so bad for our granddaughter, she wants her mom attention.  mom really only sees her on the 2 days off she has with her and does absolutely nothing with her.  we are at our wits end about this.  maybe someone has some helpfull tips for us  thanks

How old are your daughter and granddaughter? Perhaps you could arrange it so that she has one night off. It is important that she has some time with her friends and one night doesn't seem so bad.
Could you find out about parenting groups in her area that she could attend when she has time off with her baby. Some sort of support groups for single parents etc where she could perhaps meet others in the same situation? If she is new to being a mother, there is a lot to learn. Try to tell her about activities that they both could enjoy in a subtle way.
If all else fails you might have to issue some sortof ultimatum. She would not get the same kind of leeway if her child was at a childminders or nursery but unfortunately your granddaughter would not get the same
1: 1 attention from loving grandparents.
Good luck anyway

cid
5525

Your daughter shld not be concerned about how she raises her daughter, but how she chooses to be a mother to her! She is not raising her daughter, you are! I'd put my foot down if I were you. I understand how hard it must be working and raising a child on her own, but she has a resposibilty now. Party time is over! Your daughter needs to grow up quickly b/c her daughter needs a mother. Your daughter is very lucky to have you to take care of her child while she's working, and she shld be thankful for that, not take advantage of that. I agree that she shld be able to get out from time to time and socialize w/ friends. But get drunk? Are you kidding me? What if she gets a DUI, then what? She cld end up in jail. If I were you, I'd limit my services and have your daughter get a babysitter. Maybe if she has to pay someone, she'll learn she can't spend nights out partying b/c it's coming out of her pay check. Sometimes people just need to learn the hard way. I know this sounds harsh, but if you don't back off somewhat, your daughter will continue to take advantage of you. You have your lives too. I hope everything works out for you and your family.

cid
5547

I agree with junie that your daughter needs some sort of parenting group. I also agree with concerned that party time ended when she got pregnant. Call your local hospital and ask about resources for parenting groups or classes. If she does not want you to tell her how to raise her child then she needs to be there to raise her herself. You need to put your foot down and force your daughter to do what she is responsible for. If not then why not just get custody and raise the baby yourself - your doing it anyway.

cid
5549

Tamz, you were doing so good, then you brought up custody. There are no grounds for this grandparent to seek even visitation, let alone custody. Advice like that should be given based on the facts and law, rather than something that sounds like a good idea.

cid
5552

SnglDad,

I think tamz is just frustrated w/ the mother, and that's why she said that. That's the way I took it, anyway. I don't know if it wld be hard or even doable under the circumstances to seek custody, but I think we all agree that something needs to be done about this situation. I agree that parenting groups, along w/ counceling for this mom wld definitely benefit everyone in this family. Getting drunk, however, is not an option, whether it's for social reasons or just used as a deterent b/c things are tough right now.

cid
5559

SngleDad,

There are too many women who get pregnant and then dump their responsibility off on their parents. It'a amazing how many grandparents are raising children these days. I guess I was suggesting it would be easier for the Grandparents if they had the right to make decisions for the child. This mother seems so selfish and unwilling to sacrafice for her daughter. Children deserve to have mothers that place them first, after all, the child had no choice in the matter. I can see your point however since the grandparents should not have to take on a child they did not create and the mother may have a chance of rehabilitation. I have to disagree that the grandparents do not have the right to seek visitation or custody. If I leave my child in daycare and do not come for him as ageed, I will be charged with child abandonment and social service will get involved.

cid
5561

Lets remember we are hearing just one side of this story. Lets also remember that Daycares are a business, and a grandparent is family. If I were a grandparent I would be a bit offended at the comparison. There is no comparison between a grandparent and a daycare. You may disagree all you like, but the fact is that this grandparent has said nothing that would indicate that the mother has abandoned her child, much less done anything to be found legally unfit. If, the mother were to ever be found legally unfit, the father would be next in line to assume custody of the child. Parental rights are superior to third party rights. Read the decision in the USSC case of Troxel vs. Granville.

If this grandmother wants to take your advice and wishes to file for custody, she runs the risk of the mother removing the child and any relationship she now enjoys, could be severed. Grandmother needs to take a hard stance with her daughter, but doing so through legal intervention is not the answer.

cid
5563

OF COURSE, we are hearing only one side of the story, that is the nature of this forum. Okay, I agree that legal intervention is not the answer, at this point .... However, the grandparents ARE acting as childcare for this mother. Yes the Grandparents are family, but that does not mean they shouldn't be treated in equal degree as a daycare. This mother heads for the bar at the end of the day rather than coming for her child. If she agreed to return but did not, she is in some sense abondoning her child. If that is too extreme, she is certainly abandoning her responsibility as a mother. I think the behavior described in this post could certainly be argued as unfit. Grandparents, I believe I was clearly wrong to advise you to attempt custody if all else failed.

cid
5566

SnglDad,
Not to change the subject, but this one side of the story thing is bothering me. It IS the nature of this forum. Are you suggesting we not give advice b/c we're only hearing one side? That's ridiculous. I understand what you're saying, but what else can we do? Is it better to just ignore the post? I don't want to offend anyone here or give the wrong advice, so what do you suggest we do?

cid
5568

The grandparents are enabling this situation by making themselves available to take care of the child. Some strict guidelines need to be in place in order for the grandparents to continue to care for the child. Your definition of “child abandonment” and “unfit” are quite different than the legal definitions.

cid
5569

No I am not suggesting that no one give advice because we are only hearing one side of the story. To even ask that question is ridiculous. What I am suggesting is that we give advice based on some type of knowledge. We don’t just give advice because it sounds good to us, especially if it is something we have never experienced before. I would also suggest that since we all know that we are getting one side of the story, we show some restraint in our advice and not suggest such radical measures as a way of rectifying a seemingly simple problem. Those who have never been through a third party custody case have little insight to what such litigation can do. The financial and emotional drain are enough to last a life time. Mix that with the very real prospect that the grandparents will not be successful, and now you have wounds, and relationships that may never mend. My suggestion would be that we limit our advice to areas where we have some experience.

cid
5571

OK, SnglDad, I get your point, and I agree to an extent. We don't want to give anyone bad or wrong advice here. I think most everyone here has good intentions, though, and you have to understand that one person's advice may differ from another person's advice based on their own knowledge or experience. We can't all agree on everything. I suppose we cld stick to the facts b/c they can't be disputed, but not everyone knows the facts of every situation, so therefore we give our opinion. Personally speaking, I'm not an expert in many of the areas that are posted here. I have posted my responses, though, based on my knowledge or experience w/ certain areas. I've also posted my responses giving only my opinion or guess, but in those cases, I always say, I am guessing, this is my opinion, or I am not an expert in this area. I do agree, however, that it cld be harmful to a poster if bad advice is given and that person takes the advice. We all have to take that into account, and be careful what we say.

cid
5574

Plus, most courts would want the Mother to attempt to work through such a problem. And she would get counseled long before the grandparents could step in and take the child from her.
But this is the Grandparents fault. As difficult as this might be to accept, you both are allowing your Daughter to take advantage of you. IF you really want what is best for the grandchild, address this issue with your daughter and tell her how much her not wanting to be a part of her own child’s life is hurting the development of her offspring. Your daughter needs to understand that her child will view her Mothers attitude, one day, as signs of a Mother that didn’t love her. If you feel your daughter does love her child, stop being afraid to address this matter with your daughter and have a heart to heart.
And Grandparents, stop making it so easy for your daughter to make this horrible mistake. I know you love them both, but look at the bigger picture, the end result. Then do what is best for them both. Not what easies your worries for a night or two. The moment you step out of the problem, your daughter will be forced to grow up. And if your daughter is still this emotionalist’s selfish shell of a person, then I would highly suggest other actions.

cid
14654

I know exactly what you're going through. I experienced the same type of frustration. When my daughter came back to me after being impregnated by the same guy I disapproved of in the first place, she promised to get it together, go back to school, etc., etc.. well not only did that not happen, I have been raising my grandson since his birth.I had the opportunity to force my daughter to take full responsibility of her child, But she endangered him on many occasions by the neglectful her behaviors. I even had to pick him up at the police station several times. I grew up in a state guardianship environment and did not want that for him so I took guardianship. Now experiencing the brunt of his teenage rebellion I sometimes regret that decision. On the other hand I love him and want to see him beat the odds and therefore I keep praying and I keep on trying. I also homeschool him because of immoral road most of these public schools and parents are sending a lot of children down. I am trying to save him from being a part of all the drunkard/drug addicting/dealing, gangbanging, murdering statistics which are so prevalent today. And I am being blessed to do all of it without a lavish wealthy income. As a matter of fact I live below the poverty line according to worldly economics, but we are ok. I struggle to make it work so that He can have a better chance than he would have otherwise. To you I say, its a tragic time we live in today, and all we can do is decide what part we are going to play in these times. Either we be a part of the solution or a part of the problem but we cannot sit back and do nothing, ignoring the ills of our children and society will only make bad matters worse. I hope that you will be at peace with whatever you do in your situation and I pray that the Heavenly Father YHWH will give you direction and peace multiplied.

cid
16252