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Out of wedlock grandchild


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#1 violetb14

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 06:40 PM

Just found out my 30 year old son got his exgirlfriend pregnant. I am just overwhelmed. What should be a joyous occasions is filled with regrets.  My son is tore up but accepts his responsibility.  Any insights or help from anyone else?

Words of wisdom...I am just so depressed about it.



#2 lovinben

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 07:38 PM

Sorry to hear that you are feeling depressed. Luckily your son and his ex are adults and have the advantage of being more mature when deciding to bring this child into the world. I am assuming they are planning to continue the pregnancy, so my advice to you will be in this vein.

I too have a beautiful grandson, born as you say, out of wedlock. My daughter and her boyfriend do live together. By my daughter's choice, they are not married. They are wonderful loving parents to their son. They have made a beautiful home together. Do I wish they had married? Yes I do. But I have learned that what worked for me and my husband may not be what works for them. It would be worse, in my opinion, to force someone to marry and be unhappy just because of the child. Even if the parents do not have a relationship together, they will both be parents to this child and both have rights and responsibilities associated with that. Your son, if he is not going to continue a relationship with this woman, should be aware of what will be expected of him. He should strongly consider being a part of this child's life. In my opinion it would not be a bad idea to get some legal advice. My daughter's boyfriend carries the health insurance for the child and the child has his last name. Your son may find that to be a similar situation for him.

I know that right now you are hurting. You would love for your son to be married and then having a child. However, this is not to be. It can be difficult when the parents are not married, but it is not impossible to have happiness.

BTW, my husband and I were pregnant before we married at age 19. We will soon celebrate our thirty year anniversary. Situations like this, while they seem so hard in the beginning, can truly be a success. 


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#3 MrsKitty

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 08:17 PM

I would suggest being supportive of the pregnancy and putting on a happy face if you want to be involved in the child's life later. (Not saying that you are *not* doing this now--but just want to raise a red flag for you).

 

I have seen many posters (DILs) complain that grandparents are upset, angry, sad over a pregnancy for nine months. Then, those same GPs do a complete 180 and expect to be involved in the child's life after the birth. As you can expect, this doesn't fly with the mother or father of the new baby. Word to the wise: Do not tell your son or his girlfriend about your upset over this pregnancy if you want to be a grandma to the child later. You need to think long-term if this child is someone you want to have in your life and vice versa.

 

Please discuss your feelings with a licensed therapist or your doctor or a trusted clergyman-- you seem to be overwhelmed with upset and your son and his girlfriend can't help you with that (nor should they--they are not trained to deal with these types of feelings. Plus, they have plenty on their plate already!).

 

Good luck!


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#4 Cobaltblue

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 09:07 PM

violetbl4,

 

I understand your pain and depression.  I have gone through the same thing except my daughter got pregnant and has problems taking care of her children.  I have custody right now.  I was so depressed during the whole pregnancy and after my GD was born. I knew that there would be problems with her raising a child.  I tried to get her to give it up for adoption for the baby's sake. This did not work.  I went to therapy for a while to help me with my depression.  I was there when the GD was born.  I cut the umbilical cord.  The father has never seen the baby.  I don't think my daughter ever knew I was depressed because of it. I love my GDs and we have a very close bond. 

 

As Mrs. Kittty said the mother and your son may get angry about your disapproval. Also it has already happened, so it is now about accepting the situation and finding good from it.  I love both of my GDs who are out of wedlock,  They are precious.  I know you are overwhelmed, hurt, frustrated, maybe embarrassed and worried.  I had hoped if my daughter had children that she would be married and have a wonderful husband and they would have children who would raise them and be great parents.  This wasn't the way things  happened.  It still hurts and it has been six years.  My daughter has children with two different fathers and both fathers are not in the girls' lives. 

 

You go through the stages of depression and get help from a good therapist.  It will help.  Think about  the precious baby that will be born and hopefully you will get to be involved in its life. Grandchildren give you more joy than you will ever imagine.  They make you laugh. They make your heart just warm up inside.  It is hard to explain what it feels when a grandmother spends a wonderful time with their GC.  So please know that even though it is tough right now there will be good from it. 


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#5 MaMa06

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 09:29 PM

Oh please don't be depressed...why? Is the ex living far away from you and your son and you fear that you'll never see this baby? Is she considering a termination? Is your son filled with so much regret over the breakup that you feel this saddness too?  Please tell us more about your feelings and the circumstances. We can be more helpful when we know what the issues are.

 

Your son does have rights to visitation and he may have to see a lawyer but it is well worth it because I have lived this situation with my unmarried son. My initial response was "OH NO". We were shocked, saddened and embarassed to tell our friends.  A friend of mine told me to snap out of it (she' d been thru this) and accept this baby as our 1st grandchild.That was 7 years ago.  This little girl is a beautiful  part of our lives. We did take our son to see an atty and eventually went to court . DS was granted visitation. We now see this big 1st grader 2x/mo and are a big part of her life. My son is married now(not to mom) and has another daughter.. a little sister for our 1st.

This situation although at first seems overwhelming can work out to be very rewarding.


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#6 Sunshine1002

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 09:46 PM

I 2nd everything MrsKitty said.

My brother and FSILs DD was born out of "wedlock" I can assure you that my parents love her just as much as my kids that were born while I was married. They treat all the GKs equally.

Were my parents thrilled about my brothers situation, probably not. BUT if they werent they never SAID a word or showed any signs of disappointment to EITHER my brother or FSIL. Heck me neither.

If your that distraught over the situation voice your concerns, complaints etc to everyone BUT your DS and the childs Mother. Nothing ruins a relationship between parents/GPs (potentially the GP/GC relationship as well) like a GP bad mouthing/talking negatively about the parent.
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#7 msmamallama

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 11:32 PM

If your that distraught over the situation voice your concerns, complaints etc to everyone BUT your DS and the childs Mother. Nothing ruins a relationship between parents/GPs (potentially the GP/GC relationship as well) like a GP bad mouthing/talking negatively about the parent. 

 PLEASE keep your concerns between yourself and DH, or an anon forum like this one or your therapist/confidential spiritual advisor (not your church prayer group, it will get around, you don't want that). Do not discuss with your siblings, friends, parents, cousins, step-children, in-laws, etc. I really should not know that my cousin-in-law's ex-wife considered terminating their first out of wedlock pregnancy. I should not know my Aunt-in-law tried to pressure not one, but two separate baby mamas of her OTHER son to place for adoption. But because my Aunt-in-law blabbed all of her worry/concern/chagrin to her anyone who would listen, I do know this. And I really don't want to. And it's really messed up the entire family dynamic, how those mothers are treated, how those babies were welcomed, etc- decades after the fact.

 

Over 40% of all births today are to unmarried women. I realize that for previous generations a baby born out of wedlock was considered shameful/embarassing but it just isn't that way anymore. Support your son and his ex-gf, pray they can successfully co-parent their child together, and be as excited and as welcoming to this baby as you would if your son and this woman were long-time married. Good luck- oh and tell them CONGRATULATIONS!!! 


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#8 tedybearnana

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 01:12 AM

hi, violet - i agree so much with most of what has been said. i believe you have gotten a lot of great advice. it seems best for YOU if you find yourself a GOOD therapist (and that can be hard to do - so talk to your primary care physician, gynecologist, pastor, MAYBE a close friend who has been thru something like this - WITHOUT telling her why you need someone other than you are having some depression over some family issues or something. even a specialist you are close to might be able to get you to a 'good one' there are therapists and then there are therapists.

 

i'm so sorry you're having a hard time with this, but, as you say, "you just found this out and are overwhelmed". try to look and sound positive to your ds while you're pulling your feet back under you. there will probably be a time when you see all of this differently. i believe you need to be careful about giving advice to your ds, because what you say could come back and hit you in the face some day if things go wrong, but i believe every baby needs to know and have in their lives a dad that really cares about and wants them. there are too many single mom/babies and children out there in our country who have no fathers in their lives who often don't end up with great lives. your ds and his X don't have to be together - sometime that's not in the cards, but having 2 parents who are involved in that child's life is often critical to the wellbeing of the child.

 

hang in there, keep writing to us. we're a safe and annonymous place to rant, cry, get advice or ideas. that grandchild might be one of the best things to come into your life in the long run. i didn't have your future gc's situation, but my grandmother was my rock, my best friend, my role model in a sort of in a world of some dysfunction in my family home. you could be that for this gc that you are still in shock about. you have 6-7-8 mo's, probably, to get it together - IF you don't ruin it by letting, in your current shock and being overwhelmed, mess up your chance to be there for your ds, as well as your future gc.  ds's always need their mom to root for them and be there for them sometimes, no matter how old they get.

 

my dh is, at the moment, gone to pickup our youngest dgs who is 2 1/2 to spend a couple of nights with us. i can hardly wait to get him here and play with him. the two of them, while complete opposites, are the joys of our older years. ds and ddil were in their very late 30's when they had the last one, and just a little younger when the lst came. therefore, i am nearing medicare and my dh is 71. we just wish we could have had them when we were younger. energy counts, lol. good luck to you and please, keep your concerns and feelings close to your vest except with a professional. there are also clinics who work on a sliding scale if you need financial assistance to see one. they are normally run by the county and would be listed in your phone book under County Services. hugs to you and keep your chin up and a smile on your face, if possible. keep us posted.  

 

    



#9 bndtnana@gmail.com

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 08:22 AM

Dear Violet,

 

I went through this exact announcement twice within one week about 15 years ago.  Both of my two DS(s) provided me with grandchildren within 4 days of each other.  I, too, was a bit shocked and disconcerted with their announcements, but I realized that this was not unexpected, so why not approach the situation with the mindset I would have had had they not been 17 and 15 at the time AND been married?  Simply put--I always wanted to be a mother and grandmother, so DOGGONE IT, BE JUST AS EXCITED AS I WOULD BE UNDER THE BEST OF CIRCUMSTANCES!  When my future DILs would come over, we shopped for maternity clothes, baby items and layettes.  I immediately began making an afghan for each baby and finding patterns for cute little non-gender specific clothes.  I worried about how in heavens name they were going to support these sweet little babies, but reminded myself (often) that this is a happy time for mothers and so--BE HAPPY and enjoy it!  

 

Please be assured that the caps in the previous paragraph were added to emphasize that I pretty much had to yell these things to myself to make me put aside my issues and embarrassment over the situation and simply enjoy the anticipation of becoming a grandmother for the first (and second) time.  I agree with everyone else that if you are unable to set your depression aside on your own, find someone to talk with outside of the family and family circle until you can resolve it.  And definitely never let your DS and DS's ex know of your disappointment.  Believe me you DS is already aware of what you believe and hope for him and your grandchildren and doesn't need to be reminded this is not in line with those beliefs.  Don't forget--you raised him.  Smile and take yourself down to the store on the corner and check out the baby stuff right away...pick out something you would have, in the perfect situation, wanted to give your soon-to-be grandchild and then figure out when you can get it to give to your son and his ex to show your support and excitement over becoming a grandma.  Sometimes a little, inexpensive window shopping can really do the trick when you are in a funk.

 

Congratulations, btw!  Being a grandma is the greatest!


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#10 rosered135

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 10:44 AM

Hi Violet! So sorry you're feeling depressed over your coming GC (grandchild), instead of happy! I'm not sure if you know whether or not DS's XGF (ex-girlfriend) plans to have and keep the baby or whether or not you want to/think you'll be part of that baby's life or not. So, like MaMa, I'm not entirely sure where your depression is coming from. But since you said your DS "accepts his responsiblitity," I take it that, as far as you know,XGF is keeping the baby and DS plans to pay child support and, perhaps, spend time with baby, as well. 

 

If that's the case, then I agree with most of the advice PPs (previous posters) have given you, though. Also, trust me, you are going to love  this baby - and so will DS - even if you don't think so now. Perhaps realizing that will help you get past your sorrow and begin to accept the situation and even get excited about it, as Nana mentions, above. I remember being upset when my YDD (younger dear daughter) was pregnant and single with her first child. But thinking about how much I knew I would adore that baby once here helped me to begin turning my feelings around. I know you feel for DS, too, of course, But please consider that, someday, he may cherish this child's part in his life and be amazed that he was ever "torn up about" their arrival.

 

But most of what I said about you depends, largely, on whether or not if  you're going to have a role in baby's life. And I agree with PPs that, if you want that or think you might, in time,  you must avoid  letting DS and/or his XGF (ex-girlfriend) know that you're upset. It can be very hard for people to "forgive and forget" the fact someone was against/unhappy about the birth of their baby. As PPs have said, vent here, any time, and/or  to a therapist, etc - but never  to DS and XGF! (If you already have, please, if you can bring yourself to do it, tell him/her/them that you're sorry and that it was just a momentary reaction).

 

I know you may not be able to see it now, but, in the end, this, most likely, will  be a "joyous occasion," regardless of the relationship between the adults! This is DS' 1st child  and your 1st grandchild!  So I'm joining those who said - Congratulations!!! :)


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#11 violetb14

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 12:26 PM

Just to let you guys know..no one except you know I am disappointed with his behavior not the baby.  I have told my son we love him and will deal with it. I think we are all just disappointed that my ds and his ex are not suited to each other.  She is continuing the pregnancy and has other children. She is a good mother and as far as I know a good person.  But as all in my generation, I wanted a mother /father home for this baby with the three having wonderful moments , together as his brother does.   I know I am old fashioned .   

Thank you all for your comments. I so appreciate it.  I know I will get better. I have to.


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#12 violetb14

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 01:24 PM

To add on to my previous post, I live in a small rural community and I guess I am just embarrassed to tell the truth to you guys.   For those of you that this happened to, how fast do I get over that.  When do I feel happy?  What helps?



#13 SueSTx

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 01:28 PM

I also live in a very small rural community.  I have not found myself in your situation, but others here have.  It seems to me that the rest of the community will take their cue from you.  If you act embarrassed, they will be embarrassed for you.  If you seem accepting of the situation and 'happy' about your first grandchild, they will be also.  We have even had baby showers and the single mom received just as many and as nice gifts as the married community members.
 
(Edited to add)  Heck, I just remembered I have a cousin who raised a child as a single mother.  He is 21 now and has a career in law enforcement and is a volunteer fireman.  She is a school teacher and her family totally accepted her and her child.  Her brother just older, is a minister and I have never heard him make any kind of a negative comment about his sister and her son.  When this cousin was pregnant, my Dad said something negative and my mother corrected him on the spot.  Then she told us sisters, that the old country doc that had delivered all of us in the 40's and 50's refused to enter the word illegitimate on a birth certificate even though it was a state law at that time. 
 
I am hoping you and your family can find a happy place for this child in your hearts if given the opportunity to have contact with him/her.
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#14 lovinben

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 08:00 PM

Now that you are asking the question "when do I feel happy?" I really have to think. I think originally I was so concerned about my DD and how the couple planned to handle everything that I did not think too much about baby. Then when she was about 6 months along, they found out that the baby had a heart defect and would need surgery as soon as he was born. I remember being very concerned and worried, but I just don't remember the happy part. I did buy little baby things and we had a shower for them too. My DH and I were so concerned about her and baby, I guess it overshadowed everything. I think being happy kicked in once GS was here. I am so proud of him and so happy he is here. I could not imagine him not being a part of our lives.  I guess the happiness I feel now makes up for any worry or unhappiness I might have had prior to his birth. You may never feel the same happiness you felt when your other DS's wife was pregnant and I think that is ok. You can acknowledge that the circumstances are different. But it really won't change the situation. You just have to let it go. I agree with the others, don't confide this with DS. He doesn't need to know. I know you are worried about what others in your small town might say, but really you can't stop them from talking about you, can you? You can only control your reaction to them. Small minds are the ones that gossip - they've got nothing better to do.


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#15 Cobaltblue

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 10:21 PM

It is embarrassing.  Yet, I had no one to be ugly to me or my daughter about her pregnancies.  I go to church and my church was helpful to me and my daughter.  In my situation my daughter just left our house while I was gone  and I didn't know where she was when I came home.  She left with a male who she had never met except over the internet.  She moved off 12 hours away with him.  She lived with him until she called for us to come and get her.  She lived with him three months and got pregnant the first month living with him.  I was very scared for her.  She lived in a bad situation.   Then she moved out of my house again 18 months later with another boyfriend but at least his family lived in our town.  She got pregnant a few months later.  It has been frustrating.  It still embarrasses me how her lifestyle has been since moving out the first time and still 6 years later.  She still is doing wrong in different areas.  It really hurts.  I do know though that it softens because of the love I have for the children and the support of my friends If you do get to be involved with the baby you will feel better after awhile  when you hold it and spend the wonderful time rocking, doing things for it and looking into its eyes and it smiling at you and cooing. I am glad your son's exgirlfriend is a good mother.  That makes me feel better.  She also has had experience with her other children.  So this is a positive.  As far as how fast will you feel better- I guess it is an individual thing.  I think if my daughter had done right for her children then my feelings would be better.  I have custody of them right now and they have been living with me for close to three years. Plus the oldest GD for 18 months when she was born.   I have a long story that I have shared on here in the past. 


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#16 rosered135

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 07:44 AM

Violet, is there no one else in your community who has a DS/DD/sister/brother/cousin/good friend/anybody in their life who ever had a baby out of wedlock? Or do they still, in today's world, think their vicinity is, somehow, "immune" to having this happen?  People can be more accepting than you think. As Sue points out, in her "small rural community," there have been lovely baby showers for single moms, etc. And chances are, people will take their cue from you.

 

As for how soon you'll begin to feel happy, I agree with those who say it's an individual matter. It may help to "fake it till you make it." Also, I have to go back to my earlier statement.- what helped me most was focusing on the fact that I knew I was going to love that baby! And since it sounds as if you have another DS and another GC (guess I was wrong about this being your 1st!), then you have the advantage of already knowing how that love is going to feel. Think about that - it may help to raise your spirits!

 

But, if not, then know that you'll be happier, most likely, once your new GC is here. As lovinben and Cobaltblue suggest, you'll begin to love that baby-doll and the prior worry and pain won't seem to matter anymore. All other things being equal, there's a light at the end of this tunnel, even if it takes some people longer to get to than others...


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#17 tedybearnana

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 08:42 AM

cobaltblue and violet (how colorful an image that brings up!)

 

violet, i don't think there's any need in this day and age of needing to feel guilt. things aren't like they were when we were growing up. your ds is a 30 year old man, not a child and if he and the Xgf decided they are not compatible, long term (and from what you said about the X being mature and a good mother, etc), i personally believe that marrying isn't probably the best thing for the parents or maybe even the baby. having (hopefully) two parents who each come to love this baby seperately rather than bring this baby into a miserable marriage (which would also make the other children she already has live in a miserable home). i know it is embarrassing right now but i feel you need to let go of this, hold your head high and know that this, now that it has happened and is a fact, will be what is best for your grandchild and for your son.

 

i heard a statistic the other day on the news that said that either 40% or 42% of all babies born this year will be born out of wedlock - so even if some of your friends' children keep it somehow from public knowledge, probably some of your friends are just sort of 'squeaking by' - but are, really, in the same circumstance. i don't know if that will make you feel better or not. i think it would, me.

 

cobalt - i realize, as i remember your story, that you and your dh are standing tall and raising these two little grandchildren because you realize your dd can't take care of them and because you love them. i remember that your dd herself has some problems that could keep her from being able to be a good, mature mother. you and your dh are proudly raising these children, giving up things that you deserve to be doing at this time of your lives in order to see that they get the loving attention they need. you have no reason to be embarrassed. i salute you for what you've done, what you've given up in your own lives, and how much you give to these children.

 

hugs to both of you.       

 



#18 violetb14

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 02:01 PM

Everyone in this forum is so wonderful.. I thank you all for your comments.  I am better, today and know I will love this GC as much as I love my other GC.  I know I will get better and better and some of it is for the wonderful comments here.  Please keep posting.


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#19 Cobaltblue

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 06:50 PM

Tedy,

It seems that it continues to embarass me because of what she posts on Facebook which I do not participate in and others tell me what she says:  the comments and pictures she posts,  the way she has taken care of her children, the lifestyle she lives,  the way she talks  and treats  me sometimes, how she feels on many subjects and etc.  It has never changed. So it continues day in and year in.  This is why it is embarassing.  I have learned that I can't change it.  For a while my mother thought that it was my fault that she behaved the way that she did (she didn't tell me this directly)  but I feel now she sees it isn't my raising that caused this.  People do not blame me.  I did use to blame myself but I do not anymore. I don't know if it will ever change. I never thought I would have a daughter who acts the way that she does.  It hurts.

 

Yes, we will always do what we can to make sure that the girls are secure, loved and will take care of their needs.  We love them so much!!!  It hurts my heart to see them miss out on what they see all around them at school and daycare where the mother and daddy come and pick up their children and spend time with their parents day in and day out.  MY OGD has told me that she wishes that she could be like the other children in her class that have a mother and daddy.  (She is in a private school and I don't know if there are any children in her class that parents are separated or that the children live with grandparents.)  She knows one person in our church that grandmother adopted the granddaughter and raised her.)  I have told her that there are a lot of children that grandparents are raising their grandchildren.  She needs to see that she isn't alone in this area.  My heart feels her pain.  She has cried at school when she has seen other parents with their children. 



#20 tedybearnana

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Posted 03 March 2013 - 09:05 AM

Cobaltblue -

 

you don't need to be embarrassed by what she does. anyone who knows you will know that you could not have caused her to act this way. i would imagine whatever she says on Facebook is not exactly 'mature' and rational. no matter what strangers see - they are looking through darkened lenses, clouded by misunderstanding (and what they think really doesn't matter in the long run). what your friends and loved ones see is you doing your best, even today, while doing what you need to do for those two precious little girls.

 

your dear daughter has problems which you can't (and never could) do anything to change - and i doubt she can, realistically, either. you are doing God's work by seeing to it that you and your dh CAN help and protect and raise your dgds and to give them the life they deserve, knowing it is the right thing to do.     


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