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My son doesnt care for me when my wifes dad is around.

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Hi all.. i have a 3yr old son whom i have a great relationship.. we have loads of fun, spend some decent quality time together, and generally are very happy.. but everytime my wifes father visit, my son just ignores me, and is obsessed with his granpa. 

He literally pushes me away all the time and only wants his granfather.. wich is very heartbreaking sometimes.. 

My in laws live in another country, they only see him a few times a year, and i think its amazing that they get along and bond, but to the point that i am non existent and pushes me away, i cant stop being frustrated and sad about it. 

And i know, and it breaks my heart, that when they around, my son choses his granpa over me, without thinking twice. 


Any advice in how to deal with thjs ? Or similar experience?



Topic starter Posted : 02/05/2022 5:58 pm
Estimable Member Registered

Hello @Stephen93,

Thank you for sharing your situation on the forum with us. 

Here's a couple of suggestions and comments that I hope you will find useful:

Have you told your wife how you feel each time Grandpa comes to stay? It is important that you and your wife work as a team on issues like these. Communicating your feelings is important, because as your sons father, your feelings matter too. Explain to your wife that whilst it is positive that your son has such a good bond with his Grandpa, you would like to address the issue of him not wanting to be with you when he is around. 

Plan Ahead - so when you know they are going to visit, plan ahead and make sure you still schedule in some 1-1 time with your son, and get your wife to support you in this, by taking Grandpa out for a while, so you can have some time with your son.

Why not do a Grandpa, Dad and Son activity together? It does not need to cost much, do you have an interest in common with your father in law that you could do and show your son?

At meal times if you all eat together, make sure that you and Grandpa have your son in the middle so you can converse equally. Little changes like this can make a big difference and show your son that you are all important in your family.

Speaking from experience and as an only child, my grandparents were an essential part of my life until they all passed away. I loved spending time with them just because they were different and full of stories and could tell me about my parents. At the young age of three, your son is still learning about feelings and emotions, and won't realise how it is affecting you when Grandpa is here. This is why you adults need to work together, so that you all can have a positive experience when they come to stay. On the plus side, you could use the time that your son wants to be with his grandparents as an opportunity to treat your wife and remind her of what an amazing person she is and thank her through having some quality time together.

I hope this helps, remember you're his Dad, which is special, and being a Grandpa is also special too. From experience of having young adults, who have loved their grandparents dearly, they never stop loving you as a parent, but they also have special memories of things they did with just their grandparents, of which I am very thankful. 

Wishing you and your family all the best,

Fegans Parent Support.

Posted : 05/05/2022 3:58 pm
Active Member Registered

I think your son is just interested to spend time with his grandpa. It's fine. Just try to get away and look at the situation from the side. Your son enjoys spending time with his grandfather. And this is great because some children do not like their grandparents. Here you can see a great example of how different generations get together. The kid won't stop loving you just because he loves his grandfather. 

If you feel that he distancing from you. The rest of the time when your grandfather is gone, try to spend more time with your son. For example, teach him how to ride a bike. There are some really cool bikes for kids. I'm sure your son is half beat. 

And once again it is quite normal that the child shows interest in other people

Posted : 06/05/2022 10:39 am

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