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Hello I believe I can help with your concern
I can understand how the relationship with your daughter's mother in law can be difficult at times.
May I ask, does she have any other children?
And also, what was your relationship with her before your daughter got married and had a baby?
And what is her relationship like with her adult children? Would you describe it as close as what you have with your daughter?
That is great to hear how close your family is and how your son in law fits in so well with your family.
I think your daughter's mother in law is jealous of your family and the relationship you have with your daughter, which is naturally going to be stronger, because it does take her son away. While is great that you have been inviting her to things like church and lunch, I think she feels like a "fifth wheel" at times. So maybe if your daughter and son-in-law go to church with her every now and then or lunch with her and then invite you and your family afterwards can make her feel like she is more of a first choice and not necessarily an after thought, even though I know that is not your intention at all, but she is probably sensitive in this area.
Sorry I did get disconnected there for a little bit, but I am back online now
Well it does not have to be church, I am a youth group leader as well and I understand that it would be hard for them to miss that. So here is a suggestion that you can do, is talk to her and invite her to your house and say that you want to cook a meal with her for the children, this will include her more and she can cook a home dish that she likes to cook. It will also prevent your daughter with having to go to her place because of her allergies and it will not be financially difficult for your daughter's mother in law since she is not going out to eat. You can definitely keep inviting her to things, but encourage the children to do it more so, I think it will be more meaningful and special for her if they did that. So like with lunch in the future, you can tell your daughter or son in law, that "hey should also invite your mom. You should give her a call."
May I also ask, you mentioned that she is a single mother and you said that she lost her husband, what happened exactly?
Oh my goodness, I am so sorry to hear that. I can imagine that must have been really tough on her and the children. It would also help understand her attachment to the children and how she does not want them to leave her, even though children are supposed to grow up and leave the nest, but it does not mean they do not care about her. Like I said she is very sensitive to this and does not want to be alone or feel abandoned. I think you definitely on the right course and you have been doing a great job at including her, far more than most people, I think if it came more from the children it would be a good gesture that would make her feel more wanted and it will please her a lot.
That is not bad at all, I do think she has a fear of being alone when all the children have their own families and get a bit too busy to be with her that often as she would like. I mean they can try talking to her about it, some churches have good social gatherings for single parishioners. Or there is always online dating as well. There really is no easy solution to this, but sometimes making the effort can go a long way in regards XXXXX XXXXX daughter's mother in law. Also because of the finances, which is understandable as school and a baby can be expensive, some things do not have to be elaborate, it can be simple going out for coffee because ultimately I think she would just like spend time with them and like I said feel wanted.
I do not think there is anything wrong in posting a picture on facebook because you are not directly telling her these things, like you would in a text message or phone call. I also believe that when the children start taking a more proactive approach at inviting her to places or events, then it will ease this burden of guilt on you. But ultimately you have nothing to feel guilty for as you are just enjoying time with your family and expressing your happiness for this. You are not purposely keeping her away or purposely trying to dominate time in your daughter and son in law's lives, it just seems like they prefer to be at your house and with your family, which happens in these situations. I think once the children start to make an effort by inviting her to places and events, just to spend a small amount of time with her will go a long way for her and I think it will help her perceive these things in a more objective light and not in a negative light, as she has been doing.
Anytime, is there anything else I can help you with today?
Well I want to wish you the best of luck with everything and I hope it all works out well. My goal is to provide you with excellent service, so if you ever have any further questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact me at anytime.
Have a pleasant rest of your weekend :)