Annie, all I want is my grandchildren to say 'thank you' - Omaha.com
Published Monday, January 20, 2014 at 1:00 am / Updated at 3:15 pm
Annie, all I want is my grandchildren to say 'thank you'

Dear Annie: My 39-year-old son-in-law died two years ago, quite suddenly and unexpectedly. My daughter is still grieving, which I fully understand, but her grief has turned her into an angry and jealous person.

My husband and I are the only family she has. When she married, she moved close to her husband’s friends, but after he died, they did not keep in touch.

She went for counseling right afterward but said the counselor could not help her because he couldn’t give her what she wanted. She refuses to see a doctor for anti-anxiety medication or an antidepressant.

I want to be helpful and supportive, but her difficult personality is now putting a strain on our health, not to mention our marriage. We call her a few times a day and are always here if she needs to talk, but she is so angry and hateful that every conversation becomes stressful.

How much support must we offer?

I would like to entertain people again and perhaps travel, but we would feel guilty leaving her on her own.

-- No Name, No State, Please

Dear No Name: You may think you are helping your daughter, but you are actually enabling her to be emotionally dependent on you, allowing her to avoid dealing with her own issues. You need to scale back.

Encourage her to seek counseling again or to attend a grief support group through a local hospital or hospice. Then plan your vacations and your entertainment. You can still stay in touch as often as you wish. She may object to your having a life while she doesn’t, but that is her choice.

Dear Annie: I am in my 80s and live a great distance from my grandchildren. I always send them cards (with money) for birthdays and Christmas, but seldom, if ever, do I get a thank you, whether written or oral.

That’s bad enough. But when it is my birthday, I get a card from my children with the names of my grandchildren included. These grandkids are in their late 20s and do not live with their parents. At what point do they start taking responsibility for sending their own cards?

I would love to get a card directly from my grandchildren, signed by them in their own handwriting, making it more personal. How do I arrange this?

-- Neglected Grandma

Dear Grandma: This is actually something your children should have taught their own kids, but instead, they are covering for them so you don’t feel you’ve been forgotten. We don’t believe your grandchildren are deliberately ignoring these occasions. We think they are oblivious to how much it means to you.

If you have a good relationship with your grandchildren, tell them that you’d appreciate a card for your birthday directly from them.

Ask whether they have your address. If you have email, suggest they send you an e-card.

When your birthday is due, remind them in a lighthearted, humorous way. We hope they come through.

Dear Annie: This is in response to “Concerned Water Conservator,” who is amazed at the amount of water people waste. Since my town decided to charge for every drop that residents use, I place an empty pan to catch gray water in my kitchen and bathroom sinks, and I use a bucket in the shower to catch the cold water as it’s warming up. I then use the water for my vegetable garden and cleaning the house.

Both my son and I turn off the shower while soaping down, then turn it on when we’re ready to rinse. I was amazed at how much water I wasted.

-- Nebraska

Dear Nebraska: Thanks for the great suggestions.

Easter Sunday temperatures climb into 80s in Omaha area
From fashion to baskets, a guide to the latest Easter trends
Families from area shelters treated to meal at Old Chicago
Mizzou alumni aim to attract veterinary students to Henry Doorly Zoo
This Friday, celebrate Arbor Day where it all began
Why two hotshots ditched six-figure salaries for a life of less
Annie, my boyfriend of 3 years won't invite me to his mobile home
Kooser: 'American Life in Poetry' (April 20)
Swoosie’s voice a joy in memoir of stage, family
It's a pursuit of pastel at Spring Lake Park's Easter egg hunt
Want a different garden? Turn to your local greenhouse, nursery
How they met: An Omahan's 50-foot fall was best thing to ever happen to him
Annie, I'm telling you checking out nude bodies online is not porn
How to transform your wall or deck into hanging herb garden
Iowa West Foundation aids Joslyn Art Museum's repairs
Benson Hall of Fame to honor 8 graduates, 2 former educators
Omaha library staffers recommend these books
The World-Herald's weekend event recommendations
Dining review: If you're craving sushi, head to Benson's Taita
What's going on this weekend?
Dining notes: Dario’s has a new spring menu
Archives: So many wonderful old Omaha photos
Annie, drop some bereavement knowledge on these yuppies
Author Gabriel Garcia Marquez dies at 87
UNL students make dancing robot drones
< >
COLUMNISTS »
Cleveland Evans: From a moody nickname to the Ninja Turtles’ bestie
In honor of April 1, this column’s about Murgatroyd and Amphelisia.
Deadline Deal thumbnail
The Jaipur in Rockbrook Village
Half Off Fine Indian Cuisine & Drinks! $15 for Dinner, or $7 for Lunch
Buy Now
FROM THE BLOGS »
Jump to a blog:
< >
SPOTLIGHT »
We Love Weddings blog
W.E. Love Weddings is about everything Omaha and everything weddings by the editors of Wedding Essentials Magazine.
Weddings and engagements
Share your exciting news with your community by placing an announcement today.
Inspired Home Omaha magazine
Sign up today to get the latest edition of Omaha's best magazine for local living, home entertainment, fashion and travel!
WORLD-HERALD ALERTS »
Want to get World-Herald stories sent directly to your home or work computer? Sign up for Omaha.com's News Alerts and you will receive e-mails with the day's top stories.
Can't find what you need? Click here for site map »