What follows is out-takes from two brief, but disturbing conversations at a wedding this weekend with two grandmothers of parents who chose to alienate the other parent from the lives of their children.
We were married in the 60s and I put all of my resources into building a home and supporting my husband. I did some temping work until the children came and then I was a full time mum. I ran the house and the children’s activities and their Dad worked and played sport. I cooked, I cleaned, I ran after the kids. I then looked after my mum into old age as well. It’s just what we did then.
Our marriage was not full of drama and excitement. He was happier when not at home and I was happier before he retired and got under my feet. But we paid off the house and his pension was good.
I wanted more for my daughter and she went to Oxbridge then joined a major accounting firm, like her Dad. But I was not about to be left on my own, wanted something back for my time invested and I wanted my daughter and grand children near me.
I don’t know how this generation do it because everything is mixed up. Kids need their mum and for both parents to work is wrong. It’s great that the men cook and clean and do more now, but in my opinion they get in the way during birth and put too much pressure on their wives. Some things women are just better at.
So it didn’t surprise me when she left to be nearer her Mum. Now I can show her how to be a proper Mum, remind her of the things she did for me.
We tried to involve him but he causes problems, tries to boss her around and we’re not having that.
His job, like her dad, is to provide and whether he likes it or not, ours is to raise the children.
Not everything about the modern world is an improvement. The kids will be fine without him. Let’s face it, her own dad was hardly involved and she turned out ok.
I had my kids early on in life and my ex was a real career person and a selfish man who wanted fine things. The needs of the kids came second and I came third.
So I divorced him.
He tried to fight us but we ignored him. We just cut him out.
When my daughter got pregnant in sixth form, to be honest I was delighted as I wanted more kids and suddenly we had a baby around. It took me right back. It was lovely.
The father stayed with us for a while but, as we know, they aren’t really needed and he was a kid really.
He was a bit pathetic, used to leave presents by the door but didn’t dare come in. Eventually he gave up ad we raised my grand daughter into a great girl and now a great mum herself.
So grateful to have had two generations of girls with me. It’s been very special.
You can draw your own conclusions but it’s clear that there are learned behaviour patterns in cases like these,
Very worrying for our own children.
As ever, interested in your views.
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