Family breakdown, looking for advice please
My autistic grandson has been thrown out of home by my daughter, he is now living with me. It is a very complicated and long story but please bare with me because I really could use some advice.
My daughter (35) and I have had a strained relationship since I met my partner 8 years ago. She hates him and has tried everything she can to split us up. It came to a head in the summer of this year when my partners mother became seriously ill and I had to go and stay with her for 3 months to look after her, (my partner is disabled as am I but there was nobody else to look after her and between us we sort of muddled through) . My daughter decided to cut me out of her life because she felt I put his mother before her.
Fast forward 6 months after her trying to cause as much conflict as possible (another story) she has decided to throw out her 16 yr old son saying that he can come and live with me. Of course I can't let him go into care because he would not cope in that environment. However, as I have said I am disabled, my partner has to be with his mother 45 min drive away and I have to stay close to my grandsons school. I now have to look after my grandson alone and my relationship is suffering. My health is deteriorating quickly and my physiotherapist wanted me to go into hospital as an inpatient at a pain clinic as my levels have soared to unmanageable.
His school had a meeting with her a few weeks ago to try to resolve this and get some help for her. She agreed to emergency help from an outside agency but the school has informed me that she has failed to sign the papers needed to begin the process.
People tell me she is very happy and organising a holiday abroad and planning an extravagant Christmas (my grandson has not been included in any of this). Meanwhile my health and relationship are suffering.
My grandson is respectful, polite and kind. He gets up for school and arrives on time and stays out of trouble everyday. The problem for me is the daily extra household chores. He turned up on my doorstep in the clothes he stood up in and one school uniform so I am continually doing laundry (I have no money to buy extra clothes as I am living on disability money). The extra cooking, shopping, cleaning etc and stress of the situation, the strain on my relationship is making me sick and I fear I can not do it much longer.
How can I heal the rift between my grandson and his mother? Remembering my daughter refuses to talk to me. My grandson is saying he never wants to go back home.
Could you provide more details, please, Squirrel?
1. "My daughter decided to cut me out of her life because she felt I put his mother before her."
Why? What had she wanted or needed from you at that time?
2. What about you - do *you* think you had been putting his mother and he before her? Had you used to be very present in her life by way of company and an on-call pair of extra hands, prior to hooking up with your partner? And did you used to be particularly hands-on with her son? Is this why she 'hated' your new partner - because there was a sudden cut-off which she couldn't wrap her head around?
3. Why did she chuck her son out? Did she actually 'chuck him out', by which I mean - does it count as chucking-out if she was simply sending him to yours?
4. What makes you say with such conviction, that he wouldn't cope in a specialist care home? Has this ever been mentioned or discussed to him before? Or are you just going on the fact that you feel you know him well enough to say this on his behalf?
5. Do you know WHY she failed to sign those papers? Did she give you or they any reason or justification? Or do you think it was because he hatched this idea to pack him off to yours, knowing you wouldn't refuse?
6. Where's your grandson's father in all this?
7. Of course he's a good boy who wouldn't hurt a fly - he's an Aspie! :-) But could you not train him in certain of the daily housekeeping chores? Would he not enjoy new skills, feeling important and needed as well as benefit from a sense of teamship if you were to do said chores simultaneously or together? ...Especially if a bit of pocket-money were on offer, to spend on sweets, etc?
8. Have you tried asking his mother firmly and assertively for more clothing for him (especially as it's a reasonable and important demand), and, if so, what was the reaction?
9. Why - specifically in what ways - is your relationship suffering? Please describe all the ways your being run ragged is putting a, quote, strain on your romance? Doesn't your partner have every sympathy for you? Or is he (devil's advocate) sulking because you're taking care of your own family more than or instead of, basically, his? Are you getting flack?
10. What's your disability and what's your partner's?