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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5763
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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I am concerned about my grand daughter. Her mother is a nurse

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I am concerned about my grand daughter. Her mother is a nurse and likes to make diagnosis', my gr. daughter is 8 and her mother is insistant that she has a variety of issues that I never observed in my care every other weekend. She is now taking Lexapro, Daytrana, prevacid, Risperdal EVERY DAY. I believe she is trying to manufacture a perfect-acting child so my son will "love her as much as his daughter". My gr. daughter is from a previous marriage and my son has a girl her age too that lives with her mother and only comes a couple times a month. My daughter in law called me once crying and asked me " Why can't he love her as much as he loves his daughter? She is perfect, she is a straight A student, goes to bed when she should, does what she's told, is a perfect swimmer and black belt in Karate..."According to my DIL, my gr. daughter never gets a cold or bronchitis, she gets mycopkasma and enlarged spleens etc. and always requires some "special " care and attention. I'm actually worried she may be Munchausen-bound.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your problem.


It sounds like from what you said that your daughter in law is distressed and perceives that her husband, your son, does not love her as much as he loves their daughter. You feel that your daughter in law is making up disorders and saying that your grandchild has them.


It appears that your daughter in law may be doing two things. She is saying that your granddaughter has these disorders so she may seem the hero and be there to "help" your granddaughter with illnesses that other family members cannot. Also, your daughter in law may think that these problems make her daughter less the focus of her husband and more connected to her as a result. The attention she gets from her daughter being sick may be the intention here.


Have you spoken to your son about your feelings and suspicions? This would be a very important first step. Bring your feelings to him in a nonjudgmental way, as more of a concern and willingness to help rather than accusing. This will help him be more open to your feelings.


Is your daughter in law harming your grandchild in any way? Is your grandchild getting sick more than usual and does it always seem a crisis? Is she hospitalized frequently? If your son is unresponsive to your worries, you may need to contact child protective services and ask what you can do and they can do to help the situation. Depending on the level of abuse by your daughter in law, this can be a life threatening situation for your grandchild. You can determine this by talking with the child protective services workers.


Also, recommend to your son and daughter in law that they see a counselor about this issue. Obviously, there is something going on in either the marriage or with your daughter in law that needs addressed immediately. They can ask their doctors for referrals or the local community mental health center may also be helpful.


It is wonderful that your granddaughter has such caring people as you in her life watching out for her. Keep in touch with her and let her know she can come to you with any concerns. Be cautious about coming between her and her parents, but provide a safe place for her in case she needs you.


I hope this has helped,


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