See? This is Why I don't Visit Family Too Often...

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by DaisyFace, Jul 3, 2011.

  1. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Ugh! Stupid family junk....

    We live 800 miles away from my family and husband's any kind of visit is a big deal. Well, we are planning a trip this summer...

    I called my grandparents to let them know when we are going to be in town. Their response? Well, you can't stay here!

    [For the record, we have booked ourselves a hotel. That way, we don't have to stay with anyone!]

    I called my mother to let her know when we'd be in town. Her response? Well, I don't know whether I'll be able to get any time off [from her part-time, 25 hour a week job].

    That's OK - I told my Mom. Maybe we could just get together and go out for a meal or something? Her response? Well, I don't know whether we'd be able to go out to eat.


    Am I really asking too much?

    husband and I are driving 800 miles to see you and you don't know whether you'd be able to get enough time off to meet us at a stinkin' restaurant???


    Remind me again why it is so important to visit family....?
  2. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I have no idea why people can be this way. My step-mom always kept me and my kids away from her precious kids even though we were all adults when she married my father. I thought it would be wonderful to have family get togethers at holidays and such so our kids could know each other but I guess I was asking too much. I watched my "step" nephews grow up in photo's.

    My middle son is very hurt by my step-mom since my dad has died. She is really the woman he has considered his grandmother his whole life since she married my father before he was born. She has basically shut my kids out now and that hurts him especially since he lives an hour from her. He would love to go visit her now but he doesnt feel welcome. Heck, I dont feel welcome.

    Daisy...we just cant pick our relatives. We can pick our friends and if the relatives just arent worth it maybe its time to stop trying. They know where you live. Its your vacation and maybe you should spend it doing something really fun for your family instead of torturing yourselves. I hear Great Wolf Lodge is really nice!
  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I'm not sure- but I think I'd change the plans and take a more fun-filled, family vacation where everyone can get to do a little something they enjoy- maybe an amusement park, swimmming, the beach, and an evening out for all the family with family entertainment, then if you can find someone to watch the kids (if they need it), a night for you and husband alone. There's no way I'd go to visit family who had an attitude like that when we haven't even gotten there yet. Don't spend hard-earned money and precious vacation time like that, JMHO.
  4. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    So, why are you visiting them? I'd drive 800 miles the other direction and meet some people who enjoy my company!
  5. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    My Mom tends to "drop in" because she can only travel here when she has someone to drive her. So.....that said.......she expects our lives to stop when she gets here.......and she only likes to eat out, which honestly husband and I can't afford and while easy child can, often Nichole can't. So that always made me hold my breath. Then she'd offer to pay which made me feel bad. Once in a great while I've managed to get a good meal cooked before the whole let's eat out thing starts so I don't have to worry about it. She has learned to deal with people can't just up and get time off to please her. It's not like they don't want to see her, but work is work, school is school.

    I stopped visiting back home for various reasons. One was even though we had to plan it way ahead of time due to cost and distance.......If mom had something she wanted to do she went ahead and did it. Plus she had a thing about dragging us to visit every single relative I have........when I can't stand most of them, and which is not fun when you've just spent 10hrs in a car. And again with the whole let's eat out thing. So instead of visiting and enjoying each other, you felt like you were running a marathon the entire time. And we stopped because other than mom no one ever came to visit us.

    The whole thing about the eating out, well times are tough right now, maybe they can't afford it. And the thing with the job, you might have just been warned that work is work and too important to not show up just because family is visiting, especially with the current economy.

    Just try to enjoy the time you have together as best as possible.

  6. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    You make a perfectly rational point...and I would understand that...

    HOWEVER - Mom told me she needs a few weeks notice to get a day off. I just gave her SEVEN weeks notice....which, evidently, is not quite enough. And that's when I made the offer that if she couldn't spend a whole day with us - perhaps we could all just go out for a bite...?

    So figure that one out. How a five-hour-a-day job precludes any sort of visit at all...
  7. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    DF, I really don't want to hurt your feelings but you know how life can be with difficult children and extended family- have they always been this way or do you think they might be worried about your difficult child coming there?
  8. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    No hurt feelings here...they have always been this way.

    Let's just say - I have every reason to believe that difficult child's issues are completely hereditary. LOL!

    I think the distance just emphasizes it more...
  9. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    I have no idea why people are this way either...

    They certainly miss out on a lot.
  10. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    DF, their loss doesn't have to be your pain. Are you sure you want to make this your big trip for the summer? I'm glad in a way to hear that you know it's them and they've always been this way and at least you can know that it isn't your difficult child. That's good. And I'm very glad I didn't hurt your feelings. :)
  11. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Tell you the truth I don't understand. Do you have any hope that their will be a positive outcome to the visit?

    I have a easy child son who comes to town once a year with his family to visit. He and I were "tight as ticks" and still have a wonderful time when he is here. on the other hand, his wife does not care for us and as a result they have a life separate from ours. It took some getting used to but it's OK. They are treated (all of them) warmly when they are here. We literally have never been invited to visit their home. That's OK, too.

    Sometimes you have to just convince yourself that what you picture as "family" visitation just isn't realistic. In your case I envision a very very long trip that is likely to be unpleasant. Obviously the choice is yours but I suggest you rethink your objectives. Sending understanding hugs. DDD
  12. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Oh. Well, there are a lot more hours in the day than I see your point.

    I think I'd focus on family that is receptive and warm about your visit and either make it brief with those who aren't or skip them completely.

    Then for next time.......I sit down and figure out if it's worth it for next time.

  13. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    Oooh.... not me. I would not be waiting for the "next time". There'd be an 'unavoidable circumstance' that would preclude the visit this time. Then I'd do something else.
  14. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I don't even TRY to visit my relatives. Yeah, they would make time, but it would be a big deal and then it would be ALL about how great their lives are and how I made such bad choices (like having my bones dissolve painfully was a choice, as was all the various kinds arthritis, sure, I CHOSE that over a life full of interesting work and school and fun things to do). Then there is the dealing with all the awful family dynamics, lets just say I will visit my relatives 800 miles away when and if I finally die and they come here. I won't even go see some of them when they visit my paretns 20 min away. Not the bro of my dad who tried to molest me as a teen, the aunt who sees parenting as some Olympic competition and NO ONE can be as good as her precious son - even if her daughter is about 1000 times cooler and mroe interesting and fun and totally ignored other than to be driven around by her mother, not the aunt who cannot bother to even call me and then whines non stop about me being "mad" at her. She calls my mother to whine about this but hasn't dialed my number in almost ten years. (Mom finally shut up about this when I dropped ALL of my old phone bills in front of her and told her to find ONE call from said aunt - if she could find ONE call she could keep hounding me to call that aunt. She gave up after four years of them. Also told my bro to stop gritching because all the calls he made to me were NOT there, the only time HIS number was on my bills was when he was leaving three messages in a row about how I abuse him by not letting him yell at me and hit me - and I made her listen to all of those messages too. It takes proof that no one thinks I am smart enough to save to back my mom off, but when she stops pushing she stops for good. The aunt was told that she NEVER called me so she cannot expect me to do/say/visit/make time for her. I got a letter about how HURT she was that I lied to my mother and doctored my phone bills. That got my mother to blast her because no way were the bills doctored.

    Anyway, you can SEE why any visits I make to OH would be to go to Jungle Jims, Graeters, see the friends I have there and meet some of you.

    For decades we drove back to OH, then drove all over the area to visit various people who couldn't bother to make time for us. My mother always dreamed about getting a suite or one of those studio apartment hotel rooms (often cheaper than reg hotel rooms, by the way, check out the extended stay places, you CAN get them for just a couple of days a lot of the time and they have a full kitchen with dishes and pans and everything). Then she would say "here we are, come visit us anything between 9a - 10 p". She tried it once and everyone asked her to come to them because gas was so expensive, they had to work, etc.... But those same people come to her house and expect her to drop work and everything to do stuff with them.

    When I outlined each visit she took to OH and the visits those people took here (some of which, esp my one aunt, even had travel paid by my mother) and how much those people did for us and expected of us, well, my dad stopped going. Said if it wasn't worth them taking time off to see him, then he wasn't doing it to see them. My mom also started telling people how sorry she was that they couldn't see her when seh drove all that way. Only took her over 20 yrs to do it.

    Go find an area with stuff YOU want to do. Get a hotel there, and visit there. Tell your mom and the relatives that you are SO sorry, but since they cannot take time to see you, since it is such a bad time for them and teh ONLY time you can get off, well, you are going to X and will let them see ALL the pics and videos fo you having fun.

    It may or may not change how they react the next time you try to arrange a visit, but you will have a GREAT time and won't be upset or stressed by all these difficult child relatives. Consider sending difficult child to them via air if you can swing a cheap ticket. Just tell them to pick ehr up because she can't WAIT to see them (even if it is a lie, they won't know until she gets there and difficult children deserve each other). Yes, she will get into trouble, but hey, any legal issues will be for them to deal with because you can't afford to fly there to bail her out. No, I am NOT kidding. And usually our difficult children behave better for others. I still remember my bro at about 14 during the air traffic controller strike. Was supposed to fly to VA from MA to meet mom and I (mom had a conference and I got farmed out to an aunt in VA until we met up). difficult child that he was, he rearranged his ticket to give him a full day in Washington to go sightseeing alone. And did NOT tell anyone - we found out when he didn't get off the plane. My mother FREAKED but couldn't do much. No cell to get ahold of him, so he couldn't be stopped. He survived, and other than a few hours of panic and then figuring that he would survive my parents also survived. All dad did was laugh when mom told him about it. He would have done the same thing, so he couldn't throw too many stones.

    have you sat down to ask WHY you are going to see these people? What will be FUN and VACATION for you in this trip? WHy not make a trip that will be FUN for you?

    You can see, clearly, why I am biased against family vacations to see family. I don't even see mine when they come to see me.
  15. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    in my opinion, that is not a vacation. A vacation is when you go somewhere FUN and spend time with FUN and interesting people. I agree with witz...if you're willing to drive 800 miles, find something FUN in the opposite direction.
  16. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Well, (laughing) this is why my "family" consists of an ever shrinking number of people - now? My Mom. Do I have relatives? Why I'm sure I do. The last time that I saw them? When my Mother, my Father and I buried my Grandmother. I was pregnant with my son, and a pall bearer for her casket in snow covered cemetery fields. Why? Because her GRANDSONS were too "Distraught" crying over her death and putting on a good show for each other after not having visited her for oh I dunno fifteen years while we all lived in the same town, and she lived with my parents. So yeah - they knew when she came to visit and were always welcome. Yet - they were standing outside the funeral home "dividing" up her few meagar possessions. I blew the doors off the funeral home, told them all to go to a certain far South place, never EVER darken my Mothers home, called them foul names, got a nod from my Father, and myself, the funeral men and a few great uncles carried my Grandma to her resting place with them tyring to get in on the show at the last minute. So yeah - relatives? You can HAVE 'em.

    As far as your family Daisy? My thoughts would go to calling and giving your family their flat out early Christmas present. Since they are like they are? I would call. I would say "You know what Mom? It occurs to me that my and my familes driving 800 miles, even with a seven week notice for you to take off a few hours from your part time job and join my family at a restaurant for a couple hours for a dinner that we surely would have picked up the tab for then gone back to our pre-reserved hotel room and NOT inconvenienced Grandma and Grandpa - is TOO much of a bother for everyone. So, we have decided to stay out of your hair, and take the advice of a friend, and go where we will enjoy our time and our presence will be enjoyed. (please do not interrupt) ...This will not only NOT inconvenience anyone, but since it will now MOST assuredly inconvenience you for NOT inconveniencing you? It will give you something to gripe about for the next six months to EVERYONE amongst yourselves - so consider it your Christmas present - since Christmas is six months away. THAT I could not have timed more perfectly, it won't cost a thing - and it certainly is coming with more than seven weeks warning! I love you- enjoy your holidays - Talk to you later when you have more time - LOVE Daisy.

    I mean!

    Then do what the other person said - because your parents can NOT NOT know that you and your husband would NOT have picked up the tab for dinner, and that you would NOT NOT have gotten a motel - and whatever is going on there? Needs to just stay there - and I wouldn't go there now for anything. Witz is right - close your eyes - open an atlas and pick a spot. WOW.
  17. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Seriously, I dont know where 800 miles is from you, but I can think of a ton of nice vacation spots lots closer to you than that which I know kids your kids ages would some where you could get some parent alone time while they play.
  18. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Yeah, I gotta admit...

    this is sounding less and less "fun".

    And here is the ridiculous backstory:

    We have not visited these people in more than four years. Every spring, I get a tearful call from Mom - wondering whether we will come to visit over the summer....and the last several years I've told her "No."

    So this year, when Mom called in the spring...I told her I was "pretty sure" we were going to make it this year. At that time, Mom reminded me about her job and was worried that I wouldn't give her enough notice for time off.

    Meanwhile, husband and I discussed the fact that our vacation needed to include some "fun" stuff. We decided to stay in a central location between family and a few attractions....and then we created a loose schedule of activities. We settled on our plan - and booked our hotel.

    THEN I called my Mom - thinking she'd be thrilled...

    And now it sounds like us visiting is just a huge inconvenience.

    So - I guess we'll be spending a little more time at the attractions than we thought.

    Next year....screw em!
  19. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Given those details, it sounds reasonable. I'm glad you have other non-family related activities you can do. There was a period of time when things were like that with my mother, when difficult child was in elementary school and before all family koi started after difficult child became a difficult child. I would periodically schedule a vacation for something nearby my mother, like an amusement park or the beach, and tell her she was welcome to come and join us for a couple of days or for dinner or whatever if she liked, and then I'd just leave it at that and go on with our plans, determined not to let her ruin them.
  20. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Sheesh! I agree with-your updated, abbreviated plans. And next yr ... yep.