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psychlady, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 6892
Experience:  Psychotherapist specializing in the treatment of a variety of mental health issues.
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Grandparent dilema: Daughter (musician) married for 8 years,

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Grandparent dilema: Daughter (musician) married for 8 years, son in law (architect) egocentric and has poor parenting skills; two children ages 5 and 3. Son in-law frustrated and unable to deal with two kids alone. When daughter working, he becomes abusive to son and has thrown him against wall. Daughter protects the status quo, by saying husband is frustrated and gets angry. Neither would go to counciling. They both have multiple jobs,and are always traveling.(perhaps to get away from the house, and the stress in a confined space).
As the grandparents, we pick up kids from daycare, prepare meals, help in various ways; they accept the help, and ask for more.
Perhaps we help too much, and are too involved in their lives. But now with the physical abuse, we feel we need to help the grandchild.

Unfortunately your only option is to go through the court system or call Child Protective Services. I worked for them myself and they will remove the child and then ask the next closest relative for placement first. By taking care of them without this process you have no rights and the parents can pick them up for any reason. If something happens you may wish that you had called. Your daughter is not taking any initiative into resolving this situation and may feel that there is no way out. This thinking perpetuates a terrible situation and nothing changes. When there is physical abuse you have to consider all your options. This situation unfortunately is not going to resolve itself. It is uncomfortable to consider how this will impact the relationship with your daughter but eventually she will realize you did what you had to do. Your grandchildren need your protection so it's your choice. You could talk to your daughter but she knows what is happening. I would take action before it gets any worse. I would consider consulting a family attorney.

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I was hoping your advice was to have my daughter give up her commitments and spend more time with her children; and/or the grandparents giving more space to the daughter's family and let them work it out.

But, you see only legal intervention as the way to go, even if the abuse is mild and occasional.


I do not want to overreact. what is your opinion on this?

It sounds like the abuse is more than mild but you have to be the best judge since you know all the details. Whether the abuse is mild or moderate you can firmly suggest family counseling. These days this can even be utilized in her own livingroom. They may need some guidance and some parenting skills and are doing things that result in such situations. I would first suggest the counseling and also find a parenting guide that she can look at her own.
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