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  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from IPWBride. Show IPWBride's posts


    This may be an odd post.  But I just wanted to learn other's experiences.  I am really starting to drift apart from my mom because it seems like she could not be less interested in my son.  I am an only, so my mom hasn't had to care for a baby in 37 years, and she's not really a "kid person" otherwise.  However, as long as I've known her she LOVES buying other people's kids clothes and toys and ooohing and ahhhing (even folks she doesn't know well... their neighbor down the hall, for example).  So, she held my son 1 day after he was born, and I think only twice since then.  He's 15mths.  She has taken maybe 5 photos.  And she has bought him zero clothing (I don't care about the lack of purchases... but since she buys strangers baby clothes I just think its odd she hasn't for DS).  This Xmas she asked my DH and I to celebrate dinner with them w/o DS (at a restaurant) and said they'd come to the house later to do gifts and see DS.  Well, that finally happened 10 days later and they stayed for 15 minutes.  She and my step father were "sick" for his christening and I can't recall what her excuse was when she missed his first birthday party.

    I just feel so hurt.  I know there are tons of people who really don't like kids, but is it really possible to be so un-interested in your own grandchild?  My friends think I need to have lunch or something with her and tell her my feelings.  We used to talk and email almost all the time (we live in the same area and I work 10 blocks from their home and office, so its not a distance thing) and now we probably only speak once a week.  I would actually not leave DS in her care because I now don't even have trust she'd even pick him up.  Not that she has ever asked to watch him, and probably wouldn't.

    I know you can't force someone to love someone else, which is why I'm hesitant to chat with her.  But he has one Nana (my MIL) who is amazing, watched him a whole year and now twice a week, and is crazy about him.  How do I explain (when time comes) that sorry, your other grandma really doesn't like you.  Actually, that's another thing... when I asked her what she wanted to be called (nana, nonnie, grandma) she said "oh whatever... I don't care"
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from ml2620-2. Show ml2620-2's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    IPW, this is heartbreaking and I am so sorry to hear about this. It has to be a deep wound for you.

    I expected and mentally prepared for all this behavior from my MIL. What has happened since has been a total transformation. We got very lucky, she is completely in love with DD. 

    I agree with your friends that a lunch and a really firm and honest talk is in order. I'm guessing she is either struggling with her identity/or in denial that she's a grandmother and/or she's trying to a fault to not be overbearing and get all consumed with a baby and your working mom life. Or it might have to do with some sort of feelings of competition with your MIL. Who knows, it's all unacceptable (I think). Maybe all that interest in other people's babies was false and it was just a way to be friendly.  I'd be open to what she has to say, but I'd also be really firm about your position. Your son is an extension of you. If she doesn't want him to be a priority in her life, she isn't a priority in your life either.

    I'd be really clear about expectations - You can't say you want her to be a loving and affectionate grandmother, but you can say I expect you to ask about him when you call, I expect you to make seeing him a priority on holidays and his birthday, and if you don't or won't, you don't see me either.

    I am a big believer that when you get married, your husband and later your children become your primary family. Anyone beyond that, including parents is secondary. As painful as it is, take heart in your awesome husband and your beautiful son. They are the only thing that matters in your life now.

    For me, this in and of itself would be therapy worthy and I'd recommend finding someone you can talk to to resolve this in your own head and heart.

  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from cicirose. Show cicirose's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    IPW - I'm so sorry. This must be really difficult for you.

    It sounds like you had a really strong relationship before your son. I wonder if there are any feelings of resentment towards him over the change in your relationship? I think no matter what, when a person has a child, their relationships with others change in some ways. Perhaps your mother is upset over the new normal and not dealing with it well. I don't have any personal experience yet with grandparent/grandchild dynamic, but there was a huge shift between two of my sisters after one started having children. I think the other one just hasn't adapted well to their new relationship and at times she takes it out on her nephews.

    I definitely agree with your friends that you need to have a discussion with her. Hopefully that will clear the air and you can move on to a healthier, happier relationship. Good luck and I truly hope things will improve for you.
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from medfordcc. Show medfordcc's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    I'm so sad to hear that you are going through this.
    You shouldn't *have* to be the one to deal with initiating repairs, but unfortunately it sounds like you will be the one to actually do it.
    The sooner, the better.  These things become very self-perpetuating.  Like if your son isn't comfortable with your mom now because she's a virtual stranger, your mom will notice and think, "oh, he doesn't want to see me anyway.  Forget it then."
    I agree with the person above who theorized that perhaps your mom is really feeling the loss of having you as her own child, without your son taking up your time.  And just not dealing with it well AT ALL.
    The lunch is a good idea, but with one change: I would go for a first lunch where you don't bring up the problems.  It might help her feel connected to you again.  Plus, otherwise, she'll think, "IPW just wanted to go to lunch with me to tell me I'm a bad grandmother.  IPW didn't really want to see me."
    Again, not to push these feelings aside indefinitely, but just to warm up to each other again before getting to the heavy stuff.
    Counseling is also great... maybe even family counseling if she would go.
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from Daisy75. Show Daisy75's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    I'm really sad for you that this is going on and know that it must be so hard.

    How did she act when you were pregnant?  Was she interested in your pregnancy?  If you had a baby shower, did she go to it?

    My mother had had grandchild envy for YEARS.  Even when I was single with no prospects, she's say things (only half-joking) like, "can you just have a grandchild for me?"  I'd then point out the obvious and what having a child in my single state would entail, and she'd sigh b/c she knew it was a bad idea.

    She was very excited when we told her I was pregnant...with twins (making up for lost time) and she called dibs on being called "Mimi."  She was generally supportive and as involved as she could be during my pregnancy and really couldn't wait to have grandkids.

    THEN the babies were born.  She was at the hospital--but not in the room--when they were born.  We had wanted her there, so that was all fine and good.  She was beyond ecstatic that night.  And then...somehow...something went awry in her thought process and she convinced herself that we didn't want her to visit us at the hospital and that we didn't want her around and didn't want her to see the kids etc. etc. etc.  So in addition to all the normal postpartum "stuff" going on--trying to nurse, dealing with exhaustion, dealing with crazy hormones, healing from a c-section--I was dealing with my mother's nuttiness too.  I think she visited once or twice in the hospital and at some point decided that the way she was feeling was all DH's fault and that DH wasn't making her feel welcome.  So then I was running interference b/t him and her in addition to everything else.

    And then we brought the babies home.  I called her before we were leaving the hospital to find out if she wanted to come over when we got home and she said something along the lines of "you might not want me there; why don't you call me when you get home and I'll see if I feel like going out."  W.T.F.?!  So, we get home, I call her and she asks if the babies are awake.  They weren't.  She asked WHEN would they be awake.  Um, I don't know...whenever they happen to wake up.  And then she completely unleashed her craziness on me.  How was she supposed to be able to see them if they were always sleeping and we wouldn't let her hold them when they were asleep?!  WHAT?!  Where did THAT come from?  There was more, but that's the part that I remember.  So then I unleashed on HER in all my postpartum hormonal glory.  I made it clear that we wanted her involved and that I would desperately need her help for the next few weeks b/c DH would be going back to work in a couple days and I'd be on my own.  And I set her straight about her made up story about not being allowed to hold the babies.  Her response to that was "Oh.  OK.  I'll be over in half an hour or so." 

    There were several more episodes of nutty new grandma over the next couple of weeks and it was generally a very stressful time for me as a result.  Basically what it came down to was that kept making up all kinds of stories in her head based on all her issues and insecurities and then projecting those on to DH and me as not wanting her around.

    Eventually, I don't know what happened, but the craziness settled down and she stopped projecting all of that on us and she became a very doting, involved grandmother.  She would come over a few mornings a week so that I could get some sleep while she took care of the babies and did some light housekeeping.  And when I went back to work, she started watching the kids 4 days/week and still does over two years later.  It's not all sunshine and roses, and we have had some issues here and there, but overall it's been great. 

    Hearing your story, I'm wondering if your mother has some internal monologue going on that has convinced her you don't want her involved?  Maybe she doesn't know that you want her to be a big part of your lives?  Maybe she's intimidated by MIL's involvement and has distanced herself b/c she thinks you like MIL better than her?  Or that your DS is going to like MIL more than her b/c she's around more?  Maybe she's isolating herself as a defensive mechanism (I'll reject them before they can reject me)?

    It just seems strange that if the two of you were so close before that she'd be so distant now.  I definitely agree that a heart-to-heart is in order.  If it really comes down to she doesn't want to be involved, at least you'll know and you can work on accepting that and dealing with that reality.  BUT if she has made up some crazy stories in her head, it could be a starting point for turning things around and re-building your relationship and for her to build a relationship with DS.  I know I spent a lot of therapy sessions talking about what happened with my mother after the kids were born and apparently it's not uncommon for new grandmothers to struggle with finding their new role and what that means.  Regardless...until you talk to her about it, you won't know.
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from luvRIboy. Show luvRIboy's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    I'm so sorry IPW...

    I can't speak to your situation, but growing up, one of my grandmother's lived about 10 minutes away, while the other was 5 hours away, and I always considered myself closer to the one who was further.  My nearby grandmother loved us, but she wasn't a demonstrative person, she didn't say it or hug or play, and she never offered to help or to be part of our lives, she waited to be asked.  When we got older, and did get closer, she said a big part of is was that she never wanted my mom - who was her daughter in law - to feel like she was hovering.  If she was asked to help, she always did, but she didn't want to impose. 

    Not sure if this correlates at all to your situation, but I wonder: have you asked her to be more involved?  Said something like, "want to come to the park/zoo/whatever with us"?  Maybe she's waiting to be asked!

    Also, I went through something a little similar with my sister...there was a time when she hadn't seen DD for a couple of months, and so I called and asked her what was up.  We sat down and talked about it, and I said that I wanted to set up what the expectations were for them, and asked her to be honest with me.  If she wasn't going to come to something, tell was okay to disappoint me, since I'm adult, but if she ever promised something to DD that she didn't deliver on, that wasn't fair, and wasn't acceptable.  The conversation made a huge difference, and actually, since then, our relationship, and that of her and DD, has gotten so much closer!  She even babysits now! 
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from poppy609. Show poppy609's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    IPW - I'm so sad you are dealing with this.  What really struck me about your post is the fact that you used to be so close.  Could something be going on with her that she's not telling you, like being ill or depressed?  Could she be trying to protect you?  Maybe that's a stretch, but I'm trying to think of why the relationship would have changed so much.

    I am also an only and have always had a bit of a strained relationship wtih my mom (she was a single parent starting when I was 4), and I personally think it would be very difficult for me to have a "lunch" with her to talk about whatever issues were going on.  Only because I would have no idea what to expect and it could end up being extremely difficult.  When I've had to express something very important and difficult, I've written to her.  That way she has time to digest it before responding.  The only, ONLY apology I've ever heard her utter to me, and it was completely sincere, was when I did this over something that happened during my wedding planning.  I think for us it was a very effective way for me to express my thoughts to her uninterrupted. 

    HOWEVER, this will obviously not work for everyone and you may think it's a terrible idea for your circumstance.  I just wanted to throw it out there as a suggestion.

    Are you close enough with your stepfather to possibly ask him anything?
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from clc51510. Show clc51510's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    IPW - first I wanted to say that I'm very sorry that you're dealing with this.  Your post brought tears to my eyes.

    I can't speak to your situation but something Daisy said really stuck out to me.  My MIL also has internal dialogues where she convinces herself that she's been slighted by myself or DH.  She gets herself all worked up and we can't figure out why.  Eventually she explodes and we realize that she's upset herself over something that didn't actually occur.  This has happened many times since DH and I have been together.  I was just wondering if this has ever happened with your mom?  I would say it's certainly possible that she's never done this before and just started doing it after your DS was born but most likely she would have done it in the past, perhaps around your wedding because it's another major life event.

    Either way I hope that you are able to have a productive discussion with your mother and that she finds a way to be a part of your and DS's lives. I wish you all the best.
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from IPWBride. Show IPWBride's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    So many great points.  Daisy.. what a whirlwind experience after your twins were born.  Yikes!  I'm so glad that was temporary, and that now you can probably look back and laugh a bit (at least to yourself!). Your questions are interesting in that my mother was THRILLED I was PG.  She/my stepdad love my DH too.  She was also the "Gee, we were the only older people at Disney without grandkids... when are you giving us grandkids" even before I was dating anyone.  She hosted and attended my bridal and baby showers.  So was really into the whole process.

    I do think there is some jealousy over my MIL's relationship.  But, my mom is still working and my MIL is retired.  So logistics pure and simple decided who was going to be caregiver.  However, I do recognize that can still mess with the mind even if it makes sense on paper.

    Luv, I think she is also big on not hovering to your point.  But please... she needs to know that staying for more than 20 mins for Xmas is not hovering!

    I do want to talk to her, and Medford I did make a call last night that was just to "catch up" as I agree, can't just burst in on "where have you been?" without some serious problems.  I can get emotional so I just have to ensure I don't start shouting and such.  

    Luv, another good point.  Tell me you plan to attend the birthday, christening or a Sunday visit and then change your mind... but as soon as DS is old enough to understand, you are NOT doing that to him.  I am more than aware what that feels like and I do my very best to not let that happen to him.
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    Gosh, that's awful - I'm teary, too.  But, my first thought was poppy's - maybe your mom is going through menopause (my mom was VERY late with that) or something else like mild depression that's coinciding with your having DS that is rendering her less affectionate.  Maybe your having a son makes her feel old and she can't deal with that effectively and healthily?

    That being said, like luv said, I had a grandmother that lived close enough to drive to and visit and another that wasn't.  I was FAR closer to the one 500 miles away; we talked almost every day my whole adult life.  The one in Maine died and I had to drum up tears, in all honesty, at her funeral.  We just never really connected so her death was not much of a loss to me.  She connected to my cousins, but not to me.  My close grandmother, on the other hand, left a gaping hole of sadness and loss that after 4 years still hasn't gone away.  Although, I can think about it and not cry, now, for the most part.  And, I can sing, again.  I sound exactly like she did when I was very young...I can hear her in my own voice so I couldn't sing for at least a year after she died.  

    I've always been disappointed that we weren't that close and wished it were different, but sometimes it just is the way it is no matter what you do.  Your son, if this remains this way, will have the understanding I have, that not everyone connects to everyone else in a family the way everyone wishes they would, and it doesn't mean anything other than that's just the way life is sometimes.

    It doesn't sound too good to say these things about a "beloved, passed grandmother," so people don't.  But, I share this to let you know that just because it's not talked about doesn't mean it's uncommon.  That doesn't make it easier, per se, but you're not alone, anyway. 

    Maybe as he grows and becomes able to converse, she'll be more interested.

    Again, sorry you're dealing with both your son's relationship with his grandmother and your relationship with your mom.  I'd talk to her about both, and I think you've already gotten some great advice as to how to handle it.  GL!
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from medfordcc. Show medfordcc's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    In Response to Re: Grandparents:
    I do think there is some jealousy over my MIL's relationship.  But, my mom is still working and my MIL is retired.  So logistics pure and simple decided who was going to be caregiver.  However, I do recognize that can still mess with the mind even if it makes sense on paper.
    Posted by IPWBride

    You are so right.  My MIL explicitly said she did not want to do full days of childcare, but I can still see that it pains her that my mom gets to spend so much time with the LO.
    Also, to Daisy's point, my mom did something very similar.  The degree to which we all got upset was a teeny bit less, but the feelings were the same.  Apparently it's hard for everyone to adjust to these changing roles.
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    What makes sense is what people need to do, and if she can't accept that she needs to get over it and act like she understands that while she can feel jealous, she can't act on it and let it ruin her relationship with her daughter and completely sacrifice her relationship with her grandson.  

    I don't envy the conversation I'd have with her if I were you.
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from ml2620-2. Show ml2620-2's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    You guys are so much better at this advice - I'm so quick to take drastic (emotional/reactionary) actions and you all thought this through so well.

    So glad we have this place, and I know IPW will do what's right for her heart and family.
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  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from WhirledPeasPlease. Show WhirledPeasPlease's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    IPW, I'm so sorry that you're dealing with this. She may not even know she's doing it, for all of the reasons others already listed. And I agree that you should definitely talk to her because you don't want this to fester and become worse when your son gets older. My paternal grandmother (and I'm not at all suggesting that your mom is like this) was really horrible. She used to tell me--actually say to my face when I was around 8-12 years old--that she didn't love me and didn't consider me one of her "true" grandchildren because only her daughter's children were her "real" grandchildren (she had one daughter and five sons). One of the things she did was make me sit in a corner and watch while she and my cousin baked cookies and ate them. She passed away when I was in college; I didn't go to the funeral. I hope your mom and your son are able to develop a relationship. Good luck talking to her and let us know how it goes.
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    WPP, that's is the most horrific thing I've ever heard about a grandmother's attitude toward her own grandkids.  Her sons' kids weren't real grandchildren to her?  What a horrible person, honestly.  My STEP-grandmother was more inclusive of me as a "real" grandchild than that.  Deplorable.  I'm sorry that's part of your life.
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from misslily. Show misslily's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    WOW - I find all the stories on this thread so sad.  My mom isn't perfect, but at least I know she loves her grandchildren.
    I do think she has a harder time with my brother's kids - only because my SIL can be so difficult.  I think that may account for some of the stories around here, but I don't know what to think of the mom in the OP's case.
    I know "a lunch and talk" wouldn't work for my mom and me. Something more low key would be better - just bringing it up casually when she's visiting. It's easier to change the subject if things aren't going well.
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from medfordcc. Show medfordcc's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    I feel sick to my stomach.  Who makes a kid watch while they make and eat cookies with the kid's cousin??  WPP, I don't know you, but I wish I could give you a big hug.  And a lot, A LOT of cookies.  All kinds, with sprinkles and everything.
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from WhirledPeasPlease. Show WhirledPeasPlease's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    Thanks, guys. To this day I really, really enjoy cookies. I'm sorry I made this post about me; I just wanted to illustrate the importance of talking about this situation. My extended family is bananas and I may be an outlier. Families are so complicated but it's great that IPW is starting from the basis of a good relationship with her mom. Maybe that will help cut through the awkwardness.
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from winter09wedding. Show winter09wedding's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    I am not sure how i missed this...  It is so sad to me that women tend to do this to each other. I am so sorry for all of the posts- sounds like we should have a support group.

    I have similar stories (not as bad as WPP) with both my own grandparents and my mother/MIL’s relationships with DS.  However, both women were challenging BEFORE we had the baby- so it does not really mirror your situation. I have different strategies with both. I am very honest and forthright with my mother- I refuse to beat around the bush, hope for things, etc.- my childhood was a mess and I found that cutting the crap was really helpful in getting my needs met. My DH’s relationship with MIL is the opposite- very non-confrontational and given her inability to care for others the way she cares for herself, he hasn’t shared a lot (for example, where DS is going if we die).

    For my MIL, I tend to “buy her tickets” for stuff as gifts.  Something like museum passes (enough for our whole family and her) and tell her to pick the date.  That allows us some structured time with her, around an activity that would be appropriate for DS, and it is already paid for.  However, she showed up an hour late for Christmas as we entertained the rest of the family she invited to our house, and then refused to open presents until about 15 minutes before DS’s bedtime- that stuff I can’t control. 

    As for your situation- how would you have talked about a conflict in the past? If it isn’t over lunch, I wouldn’t start now. I do agree with the others that have said to put your foot down- ask explicitly- are you able to stay for the whole party? Can you help me with the favor bags for the kids at the end of the event? Etc. And, I would spend some time trying to re-initiate the relationship you did have with her. She may be seeing this as a loss (how parents often view weddings too)… so, she may come around if you make more of an effort to talk to her just about stuff in general. I tend to call my mom during my long commute- with an ear piece- because it is a guaranteed 40 minute call two or three times a week.  In addition, you can suggest activities that you guys used to do together to share with DS (is she a fan of the aquarium or something?) with the “I thought of you and how much fun we used to have doing this.” 

    Bottom line- Even if you can’t bring up all of the feelings that you have and the hurt that you feel right away- can you ask her to do the things that you want her to be doing. For example “Mom- it is really important to me that DS gets to know you and stepdad- I thought of two ideas- either I’d like to try to do dinner once a week (month?)- or do a fun outing like the children's museum- what day would work best for you guys.”  I think that it is fine to be very honest with her about your needs, even if you can't bring up the last 15 months without getting really upset with her.

  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from poppy609. Show poppy609's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    WPP - :(
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from luvRIboy. Show luvRIboy's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    This whole thread makes me so sad...but it sort of reinforces what we all know, which is that as much as we'd like to sometimes, we can't change people. 

    My mom (who watches DD twice a week and probably sees her 3-4 times a week) is always shocked that my MIL (who lives about an hour away) doesn't try to see DD more.  She never comes to our house, but only sees DD when we bring her to them.  It's her only grandchild, and we do all we can to encourage them to see her (invite for holidays, invite for dinners, go down to visit every 6 weeks or so)...but it is always our idea.  Also, when we're down there, the TV is ALWAYS on, which makes me crazy.  We tend to have music on at home while we're playing, and my parents do the same. 

    #2 arrives in late August, and I know that will only complicate things more, since I already hate taking DD away from her familiar environment, with toys, etc.  Plus, I don't feel like it's fair that I'm making sure there's a relationship there.  I think of my grandparents who lived 5+ hours away...they came up 2x a year, and we went down there 2X a year...sometimes more for things like recitals or concerts!...and my in-laws act like an hour is a cross country trip!  

    Sorry to take this over...just reading all of the posts made me realize that as much as things with my parents and DD are great, I do wish there were differences with my ILs.  The biggest problem there is that they're not my parents, so it's harder for me to set expectations, and DH doesn't really have any for them.
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from Dboylen. Show Dboylen's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    I also think you should speak with your Mom, without your partner. I also think the 2 lunch date idea is a good one. 

    As to the "How do I explain (when time comes) that sorry, your other grandma really doesn't like you"

    Also, telling your son that his grandmother does not like/love him or likes/loves him less is not a good idea. Maybe she is very busy, or old or tired or working or really anything else (excpet passed away if she is not), please do not tell your son that, it will only do more harm then good, even if it is honest.
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from Nonprofitess. Show Nonprofitess's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    I suspect that your mother might want to be more involved than you think, but is taking the "I don't want to interfere" approach to extremes. My mom (who lives far away, but I digress) was a little hands off right after my son was born, but only, as I learned later, because she didn't want to be a pain, get in the way, make me feel bulldozed, etc. When I told her I *wanted* her advice, and *wanted* her to be around, really truly, she changed her tune immediately. If you speak to your mom about this, don't accuse her of being distant - phrase it as you and your son would like to see her more. You miss her.

    Now, the reverse might be a case like my MIL (she only lives an hour away, go figure), who's only mildly interested in my son. She is a classic narcissist. If it's not about her, it's not interesting. When she does see/hold/spend time with my son, she has to turn it into a story about how she raised her kids, what kind of mother she was, you get the idea.

    I truly hope it's the former and not the latter - if you and your mom used to be close, it sounds like it is. All is not lost! Keep trying to build the relationship, ask for her advice, let her know you're still her girl. I wish you all the best!!
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from IPWBride. Show IPWBride's posts

    Re: Grandparents

    I felt like coming back and updating this thread.  I'm cautiously optimistic about a few things that have happened.  So, we did have a lunch.  Just the two of us.  I asked her to lunch just saying "we haven't chatted just the two of us in a long time, can we make some time?"  I took the advice from Medford and others and made it just a catching up time.  Didn't want to address any issues.  The lunch happened to occur the day after I learned of our secondary infertility issue, and she was actually incredibly supportive and wonderful when we talked about that.  That was last day of Feb. and I considered it a success.  It was a touchpoint, and our emails went from maybe 1 a week to 2.
    Next event was the first weekend in April, I had that Fri off and she invited me and DS to lunch to give DS an easter basket (they have a home up north and drive right by our home almost, which btw, they do EVERY weekend and never stop in... but I digress).  So we met in Kittery (a more fun spot than my house) and lunch was nice.  I brought some matchbox cars and she actually played with them with DS on the table... and looked very involved and interested.  My stepdad stayed very much at arms distance.  Still no talking of any issues, which I'd never do with my stepdad there.  I'm actually thinking he is part of this whole problem.  His bio son will never have any kids and a little birdie (my mom's sister) told me he is insanely jealous about this.  Not to give my whole family history, but my stepdad has been such since I was 4, and my DS's middle name is after him... so if he doesn't think of DS as "his own grandchild," that's his problem and not one I'm going to address.
    So anyways... sorry this is so long... my stepdad is away on 3 week business trip so I called my mom before he left and said "I'd like you to come and spend some time with DS, pick a night."  She accepted!  So the day is here, I am picking her up after work today, we are going to get DS from daycare together, come home, play, make dinner, etc and she is actually sleeping over!!!  
    I am on pins and needles anxious to see how tonight goes.  If she is wonderful and warm and has fun... its her husband, their issues and I can't fix it.  If she is still shy and awkward, we have another issue.
    But regardless, this is a HUGE step and I am counting the minutes until 3:30pm today.