How do you tell a grandparent that they need to give me some space?

Melissa - posted on 10/19/2009 ( 16 moms have responded )

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My son will be 7 on halloween. I had him when I was 20. I was not with his father and my parents really helped mem out. They were wonderful. My father loves my son a ton. But he sometimes causes problems between my boyfriend and I. For example, we went to The Pumpkin Patch yesterday. It has rides, corn mazez, contests, food, games, ect. Well, during the corn maze we started arguing and he told my boyfriend that he is not Kaleb's (my son) father and never will be!! How do I tell him that he is the grandfather not his father??

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Angela - posted on 07/08/2013

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Your father needs to butt out. He's the biological grandparent but YOU as the MOTHER hold the position of principal caretaker of that child. Your partner is a man YOU have chosen and your father has no right to be disrespectful.

I always question the relevance of a statement like "You're not his father and never will be!" Why should he say that? Was your partner CLAIMING to be the child's father? I bet he wasn't!

Katherine - posted on 10/19/2009

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Quoting Autumn:

They are just trying to protect your son! Grandparents seem to step on all of our toes from time to time and you just have to tell them I appreciate all the help you have given and still give but when it comes to decision making for him I would like to make it and if i need help I know where you are! Also that if your boyfriend is going to be in your life then he will be a father figure not necessarily a father and he is not trying to replace the childs father he is there for you and not to be so harsh on him. Lay it out on the line and things might get yucky and they might get mad but they love you and they will be okay with it after they think and understand your fellings


Amen!!!!  I'm an "older" mom and my parents CONSTANTLY undermine my authority!!!  I've realized there isn't a darn thing I can do about it...so either ignore it, or go nuts over it :)

Stacy - posted on 10/19/2009

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Yes he did, my husband has been my sns father since he was 2, he is now 8. He adopted him when he was about three. I did let my sons real dad see him again, cause I wanted my son to know I was not the bad. Just as I knew it would he stopped comming around again. It is heart breaking to see your child in pain, and not able to do anything about it. My son and I agreed before he seen him though, that if he hurt him again they would have to wait til he was 18 to see him again. Now at least he knows that it isn't me or him, it is the man who lefts fault.

Where is 7, you might even ask him how he feels about it. Sit down with youur boyfriend and son and find out what he wants. You would be surprised in how much they know about this stuff. They pick it up from kids at school and stuff. My son was 6 when he told me he knew he was adoted by my husband. Children are amazzingly smart.

Melissa - posted on 10/19/2009

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That's good to hear. My son goes over to his fathers parents house once a week (on weekends) to sleep over. My son's father took me to court for joint custody. Well we came to an agreement before we had to go back. The agreement was that he would get him one night on the weekend every other weekend and every other week, he could pick him up and take him to dinner for a couple of hours. Well after that, I was the one calling him on his weekend night to take my son. He had him only 2 times, and then I came to my senses and stopped calling him. I figured that if he wanted to see his son, HE could call ME. Not me calling him. And ever since then, he never called. Since then, I have been keeping track of when he goes to his father's parents house to sleep over. And that was like 2-3 years ago. So, I think I would have enough evidence to win an adoption case. But my boyfriend has talked to Kaleb's father and wants him to be in his life, but his father is just not trying. I live in New York by the way. I'm not gonna do anything now, but I will talk to a lawyer once we get married. Did you son then take your husbands last name?

Stacy - posted on 10/19/2009

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Deending on what state you live in, grandparents have no rights. And you said the grandparents have been there, so I'm sure you wouldn't keep your son from them anyways. As far aas the forms, I just went threw this situation a couple years ago. I showed that the real fatheer of my son has not been there for 2 or more years, and my husband adopted him with in 3 months after we got married. It wasn't even 2 consecutive years. We served him with order to apear papers, he didn't show. Took less than 5 minutes with my testamoney. Talk it over with another lawyer, ask him if there are grandparent rights where you are, and ask him if you show cause for an adotion what your chances are. Either way, if your son calls him dad, or looks at him as a father, that is what matters. I'm glad you found a man willing and happy to take on a child not biolagically his. I hope all works out for you in the end.Good Luck!

Sherri - posted on 10/19/2009

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Be open. I am a grandmother and i told my daughter i cant read their minds. If i over step my grounds i wanna know. You just say it calmly and stay cool and just say it.

Melissa - posted on 10/19/2009

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My boyfriend has stated that he would love nothing more than to adopt my son. However, I have talked with a lawyer briefly about it and he said that my son's biological father would have to sign a form, and I know he would not do that. Even though he is rarely there. Plus his father's parents would fight it. But I would never take my son away from them because they are absolutly wonderful and do a lot for my son. From listening to everyone's responses, I will definatly have to sit down and talk with my father. I think I will have to have my mother with me though because she can help mediate so that we don't get upset and start arguing. Thank you all for the helpful advise!!!

Stacy - posted on 10/19/2009

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perhapse your father is doing all this in fear he will loose his relationship with your son if your boyfreind steps in as dad. Maybe try to reinsure him that he wwill always be apart your sons life.Maybe if you can get the three men in your life to go on an outing together and bound, it will release some of your stress, and your fathers insecurities. Let him see that your son has enough room for both of them in his life.

Is your boyfreind thinking of adopting your son where his real dad isnt apart of his life? I urge you to sit and have a talk with your dad and boyfreind, before your son gets stuck in a tug awar. You dont want to just cut your dad out, cause your son will be the one getting hurt in the end. Noone wants to see their child in pain from something that can be prevented. Don't loose sight in the one person that really matters, your son. Talk to your dad, and explain to him how you feel. Your father loves you, and will understand. You are his baby, and he does not want to see you hurting in anyway. Work with him, our parents will always be there for us no matter what.

Melissa - posted on 10/19/2009

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Just to add...I have been with my boyfriend for over 3 years and we have talked about getting married. I was unemployed for the last 6 months and finally found a good paying job a few weeks ago. So, once we get back on our feet, he will buy the ring he picked out and we will get married. My son's biological father was never really in the picture (but his parents always were), so I am greatful that I found a stable home and father figure who wants to be there for him. But my father just never sees the problem and thinks that he is always right and I don't think he will ever change. And he doesn't see that it is hurting my relationship with my boyfriend and with him. My son loves to hang out with his grandfather, but if he can't take a step back and realize that my boyfriend wants to be his father figure, then I feel that I will have to stop letting my son go over there all teh time.

Stacy - posted on 10/19/2009

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Try talking to your dad, and explain that you are very greatful for his help threw the years, but he is his only the grandfather. This may hurt hhis feelings, but tough love works with parents as well. I have the opisite problem my 8 year olds real dad has popped in and out of my sons life since birth. he went 3 years without seeing him, my husbannd adopted him when he was 4. My son seen his real dad at the store, and even though it had been more than 3 years, he remembered him, and wanted to get to know him. My husband and I talked it over with our son, and decided it would be okay. For first couple years of his life it was just me my mom, and step dad raising him. My mom was mad as hell at me for allowing my son to see his real dad, but I had to remind her, that he was my son, and it was my decision, not hers.

It can be difficult to remind your parents of this, exspecially when they were the only ones you knew you can relay on. I'm sure they told you about tough love, now tell them it is your turn. Ask him to respect you and your decision, even if they don't agree with it. Reinsure him that he is a big part in your childs life, but as the grand parent. His job now is to love your son, to spoil him alot, beound the point that you would like at times. Tell him that you love to here his opinions, but to respect the fact that it is your choice. Ask him to tolerate your boyfreind, even if he doesnt like him. My mom always wanted me to be open and honest with her, I'm sure your parents are the same. Speak how you feel, before things get worse. Good Luck!

Ivory - posted on 10/19/2009

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Tell them thank you for the advise. Dont agrue it will make it worst. try to talk to them and get them to see how you feel. They will respect your decision better once you'll had the talk. Then you'll will start to get alone better. Dont be mean about just be honest they will understand eventally.

Firebird - posted on 10/19/2009

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This can be a touchy situation since I'm sure you don't want to sound at all ungrateful for all the help your parents have given you..... make sure that it's just you and your father alone when you talk to him. You may end up just having to spit it out, I know I can't think of a good way to start a conversation like this, but it is important for your father to know that he is Grandpa, not Dad and if your boyfriend is trying to be an active part of your son's life, your father should be happy for his grandson. I would suggest making sure to emphasize how much you appreciate all your that your father's done for you and Kaleb.

Crissy - posted on 10/19/2009

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Quoting Elise:

You say it just like that. You are his grandfather, not his father. But you must understand he is probably concerned to bring a man around him that is just your boyfriend. It is scary to trust boyfriends with your child, especially with all the horror stories you hear. Your dad is just looking out and since he has been so involved he probably feels like his father. Just try to be kind and not hurt his feelings because your son is probably his pride and joy. Most grandparents are that way! :)


yeh i agree with this person. grandparents do need to understand there place though. i hate when they try and over step that and become the parent. my mother in law tries to do this all the time with my children. i just tell her that im there mother and im going to do things the way i see fit. Being an overprotective grandparent doesnt mean that they need to say when someone can or cannot have a father.

Autumn - posted on 10/19/2009

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They are just trying to protect your son! Grandparents seem to step on all of our toes from time to time and you just have to tell them I appreciate all the help you have given and still give but when it comes to decision making for him I would like to make it and if i need help I know where you are! Also that if your boyfriend is going to be in your life then he will be a father figure not necessarily a father and he is not trying to replace the childs father he is there for you and not to be so harsh on him. Lay it out on the line and things might get yucky and they might get mad but they love you and they will be okay with it after they think and understand your fellings

Elise - posted on 10/19/2009

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You say it just like that. You are his grandfather, not his father. But you must understand he is probably concerned to bring a man around him that is just your boyfriend. It is scary to trust boyfriends with your child, especially with all the horror stories you hear. Your dad is just looking out and since he has been so involved he probably feels like his father. Just try to be kind and not hurt his feelings because your son is probably his pride and joy. Most grandparents are that way! :)

Morgan - posted on 10/19/2009

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I feel honesty is the best way be open and tell them how you feel and if the father is trying to be there then tell them that and that they arent helping that

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