A lot of parents of estranged adults tend to be caught up in the idea that they also lose out on any grandchildren if there are any and they know of them. Reality says that when adult children make a decision to estrange themselves, without having been beaten mentally, emotionally or physically, they have also taken the decision away for their children if they have any, on being grandchildren as well. In other words, estranged adult’s children become “victims” to their parent’s choices.
Of course, every parent alive and non-abusive feels that they’re always going to be the better parent. Actually, every adult who estranges themselves, figures that they have reason and therefore are somehow better than their parent or knows more. It’s only fitting then that they will also feel as though their own children don’t need grandparents as part of their lives. Grandchildren then become bargaining chips or even victims to their parent’s decisions, choices and whims.
What they haven’t figured out fully yet is that Life can be cruel and throw curveballs at them and everyone around them.
They may even feel smug that they’ve got others in their lives (aka friends, in-laws or whatever) and they don’t need the people that they once called “Mom” and “Dad”. As an adult, one would hope that they don’t need their shoelaces tied or to be woken up to get to work but, that’s still out with the jury, isn’t it?
What always baffles me is that a lot of these now adult “children” will have children of their own and figure that the children don’t need their grandparent(s) as part of their lives. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, grandparents play a huge role in their grandchildren’s growth years and, unless the parent was to have been beaten or truly neglected greatly, all that they’re really doing is preventing their own children from truly having a piece of the pie.
Let’s ask ourselves a few questions here:
- Do our estranged adults really have all of their ducks in a row so that they can make choices and decisions such as this for their own children?
- If, as they will scream out without thought, these adults who have chosen to estrange themselves are so beaten by their parents, how is it that they can consider themselves “good parents” themselves? Aren’t they then, simply “damaged goods”?
- Doesn’t #2 stand true even for those who don’t have children or don’t have them yet?
- How do “damaged people/goods” raise children to be non-damaged?
- I don’t care if Leonardo DaVinci were to come back and have children, even DaVinci wasn’t a perfect person with knowledge about how to live life so, who are our estranged adults to not only slap labels haphazardly upon our foreheads as their former parents and without ceremony or the education to do so save for some search engined information?
- If priests, hockey coaches, teachers etc., have flaws to have sexually molested children and yet, parents have done none of this to their children to have them estrange, under what grounds do adults who estrange themselves have to honestly use as a “cause” with which to estrange? It would only stand to reason that these adults would be crumpled heaps of mess on the floor, never operating as proper people should something like a priest, coach, teacher or whatever were to have done to them what was done to others, right?
- No one holds the Holy Grail of Parenting. That includes our estranged adults as well. Last time I checked, children don’t come with manuals though search engines and people out to sell something, somehow, someway, will attempt to say differently. We know that raising a child or children isn’t that easy, is it? One need only to search engine the term “manual for children” to come up with some crazy results. As Bruno Mars would say in Uptown Funk and I would say, “Don’t believe me”…just try!
- Amassing a pile of information whether it be through books or the net or a clergy person at the front of a room full of people doesn’t mean that someone knows everything practical. They may have stored a tremendous number of ideas or studies or whatever but, putting any of those things into changing a diaper and dealing with a screaming child isn’t exactly the same thing as learned or acquired information, is it?
- In-Laws may be wonderful, great and even helpful but, what happens when they are ill and of no more use to your adult child who has estranged themselves from you, along with those grandchildren?
- Social Media is famous for starting wars within families and friends. Keep in mind that it takes about 10 seconds or so to smile and line up a shot, looking happy and content. It takes another 30 seconds or so for them to write a lovely blurb about how much fun they had or how delicious their meal was and post it to social media. What about the other hours, days, even moments before and after that shot was taken? It doesn’t seem to matter if it was Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or any plethora of social media that can be found, trust me, your adult “child” is NOT as happy as what they wish others to believe. Don’t believe me (here I go again as I seem to have it on the brain), call someone you see on a social media page, smiling and seemingly on top of the world and see if their lives are really as wonderful as they’ve appeared on a social media snapshot or blurb that they’ve written. You and I both know that Life is not one huge picnic so, what makes us think that our adult’s lives are any different?
All of that said, if we can answer any of those questions for ourselves, think about what it may be like for grandchildren who are being kept from grandparents.
Children may be children and only concerned with their own lives at the moment. As long as they have food in their tummies, a place to sleep, Mommy/Daddy or both and the other set of grandparents to dote on them, they will feel ok for a while in their lives. This is especially true if they didn’t know you and vice versa. However, much like someone who has found out that they were adopted, there’s going to be questions about you from them. It doesn’t seem to matter how well a parent can recite the “wrongs” that they’ve had done to them by their parents, a grandchild will want to know their grandparent(s) and to discern for themselves. The few who don’t want it, maybe simply what their parent has made them into.
Someone once said that there’s a price tag to every choice, decision or action. While I can’t remember right now, who said it, there’s a famous person who also said that for every action, there’s an equal or greater reaction. While none of us wish anyone else to be in the pain that we’re in, we also can’t stop what will happen with a good percentage of our grandchildren one day. They will also estrange from their own parent(s).
After all, haven’t they learned from the best?
Who will be there for our children when this happens?
Best of wishes!