Competing with each other for parent of the year or just guilt?
Or even grandparent of the year. So this last Valentine's Day, really brought it home. I've noticed this, and suspected this for oh about 4 years now but it really solidified since my year of disengagement. DH treats my grown children for the most part as well as his own. Of course we've had a few bumps here and there with my 18 year old still living with us high schooler but that's to be expected. Biggest issues in that department is DH has higher standards in regards to my youngest (18) than he does for his own youngest (34) but eh whatever, maybe he doesn't want to see my son turn out like 2 out of three of his sons with only one (38) completely launching thus far. Anyways, DH's grandchildren seem to be in two batches. The recently adult group 18 and up and the new hatch of 10 to 2 years and which is the same age as my oldest to youngest 9-1 years. when I met DH 6 years ago, I had just the two, he had the older ones who were teens and the younger ones who were the ages of my two. I always did holiday things for my kids and then grandkids such as making Easter baskets and giving little holiday treats if I knew I would be seeing them, for instance like valentines chocolates or little Easter treats or Halloween treats.
My kids and I always celebrated Easter with a brunch and Easter egg hunt when I divorced my narcissistic ex husband nearly 10 years ago. I anticipated continuing this when I remarried and have done so with DHs blessing. What I've began to notice and make a correlation on is this, when we were dating I bought my grandkids some little Easter treats and gifts and asked DH if that's something we could do for his as well, which he enthusiastically agreed to. I gave mine to my gkids on Easter and .....well his were a little harder to sync up with, we gave them to them a week or two later. No biggie. So this pattern continued with me always including his, then gradually dropping the older ones to only do for the younger, that is until I began to notice how complicated it always seemed to be to gift these gifts. The parents or kids were always unavailable. Coordinating a get together to just simply give them a treat became nearly impossible, I mean I get it, parents and now kids are very busy with lessons and practices and working and juggling it all, but what it became was us buying the treats and dropping them off. On the porch. Because 80% of the time they could not accommodate us. So, I of course lost my enthusiasm for it.
I began buying only for my gkids and tucking it away until they or I would go to visit, I've been doing this for at least two years now. DH never noticed nor has said anything until this valentines, ya know cause he's working from home now ugh and I bought some little valentines heart chocolate boxes and brought them in from shopping, he saw them and asked "oh who are these for?" I said my grandkids, I'm seeing them this Tuesday and thought it would be fun. He asks "oh that's cute, are there enough for mine?" I of course felt bad and said "oh no I didn't even think about that, but I can pick some up next time I go, when were you thinking of delivering to them?" He thought about it a few minutes then said "you know never mind, it's always to complicated getting things to them and I'll spend the entire weekend trying to make it happen" seriously that's the truth, but he's only just noticed "we " haven't been doing this sort of thing for his for at least two years now???? I have now begun to wonder if many of the past events I took the lead on thinking that "they" would enjoy it because mine did have been more a guilt thing on both of our parts. I think he never really did that sort of thing with his, nor the Easter brunch he always hints at doing with his yet never happens because most of them leave town for spring break! I've switched up the script now when he finds out something I'm doing with or for mine and he expresses interest in doing similar for his and say "oh that sounds great, let me know what plan you come up with and I'm more than happy to help" 90% of the time he changes his mind or it just never solidifies, folks it doesn't get uncomplicated when they are all grown.