Our alienating parent has posted on several genealogy websites (of course) about a letter which I wrote to my mother-in-law. Yes, I wrote a letter to my mother-in-law, but as usual, our alienating parent’s version is not quite accurate. And is anyone who has been following this blog surprised? lol!
Yes, I wrote a letter to my mother-in-law in response to her letters to us, urging us to keep trying to have a relationship with my husband’s children. My husband and I were both very upset at the time and I probably should have waited to respond to her letters. The letter was written in the heat of the moment and I did subsequently apologize to my mother-in-law for some of the things I said. The letter did, however, provide us with the opportunity to discuss the situation about my stepchildren, so some good did come out of it.
Our targeted grandmother explained to us why she was so worried about everything that was going on. As a grandmother myself now, I can have a little more understanding of where she was coming from. In addition, she told us several disturbing stories, which definitely explained her actions. First of all, she was distraught because she knew that if our alienating parent got angry with her ex, she (the grandmother) would not be allowed to see her grandchildren — since that is what had happened in the past. She felt her son should just do whatever our alienating parent wanted, in order for her to be allowed to see her grandchildren. Needless to say, that didn’t sit too well with our targeted parent! 🙂
More disturbing, however, were the things my mother-in-law told us: for instance, about the time that our alienating parent came to her, hysterical because she (our alienating parent) felt her children liked me better than they liked her. This concerned my mother-in-law a great deal because she could not imagine a mother worrying about something like that. She also told us that she felt our alienating parent was jealous and felt threatened by her ex’s new relationship. And the icing on the cake for my mother-in-law was when our alienating parent told her that she and my husband were getting back together — just a few months before our wedding. My mother-in-law knew that was not true and was frightened by our alienating parent’s apparent hallucinations.
The children’s behavior was also a concern to my mother-in-law. She worried when they had an accident or got dirty, and their first response was: “Don’t tell my Mom!” This distressed their grandmother a great deal. Why would her grandchildren be so fearful of their mother’s reaction? I imagine most grandmothers would find that behavior disconcerting, and this just goes to show what a loving grandmother my mother-in-law was.
My mother-in-law’s version, to us, about how our alienating parent came to be in possession of the letter also doesn’t correspond with our alienating parent’s version. My mother-in-law admitted that she showed the letter to our alienating parent, but told us that it then mysteriously disappeared. Only to reappear at a Court hearing dealing with child support. Our alienating parent presented it at a hearing in an attempt to show that her ex was working two jobs!
Notice how our alienating parent doesn’t mention how she attempted to use the letter to collect more child support when she mentions it on genealogy websites under the names of her former in-laws?
So while our alienating parent has her version behind the letter I wrote to my mother-in-law, and wants to make people think it was a bad thing, I can’t help but thing it was a good thing. It cleared the air between my mother-in-law and I. She didn’t agree with our decision, but we hope she eventually came to understand our reasoning behind it. And we didn’t agree with her decision, but felt she was certainly entitled to make that decision for herself. And it opened our eyes to what was actually taking place, as far as oour alienating parent was concerned.
Here’s a portion of a letter my mother-in-law wrote after my father-in-law’s death:
So, as you can see, it ended up being “all good.” My in-laws dearly loved their grandchildren and would have done anything to keep them safe and happy — even putting up with their former daughter-in-law’s behavior. Everything else being posted on genealogy websites is disrespectful to these wonderful people and their memory. It’s not about which daughter-in-law they liked best, which is what one person who read our alienating parent’s posts concluded: our alienating parent wants people to believe that she was like the daughter they never had, while I was the wicked, mean daughter-in-law. Why? Why is that so important to our alienating parent, that she would disrespect her children’s grandparents in such a fashion? These posts have nothing to do with genealogy and are simply our alienating parent’s avenue to share her thoughts — which is what blogs are for, by the way.