My 14 year old granddaughter and I have become estranged

This is a repost blog.

Original letters appeared in Ask Amy.

The original question-writer’s words are reproduced here - to read Amy Dickinson’s advice, click through to the original link.

Nov 2011: My 14 year old granddaughter and I have become estranged

DEAR AMY: My 14-year-old granddaughter and I have become estranged. Her parents split up after 14 years of living together.

She chose to live with her dad, while her mother (my daughter) and my 5-year-old granddaughter came to live with my husband and me (for the past 18 months).

I helped raise my older granddaughter from infancy, as her mother was a teenager when she gave birth for the first time. We spent a lot of time together and had a very close and loving relationship.

My granddaughter continues to shun her mother and me. (Her father has involved her in their breakup, and she has taken his side. He speaks horribly about our family.) It is so painful.

My therapist says to stay in touch with her and give her time, but her rudeness is hard to take.

No matter what I attempt to do or say at this point — such as let’s spend some time together and go to the mall or maybe the museum — she takes this the wrong way, as if I’m trying to guilt her. She ignores me or turns me down. I’ve heard she misses me, yet every attempt I make to spend time with her is met with disdain.

What should I do at this point to not further alienate her? Will this ever get better? I miss her terribly.

– Her Nana

19 June 2023: What happens to the advice I offer once it leaves my desk?

Update from Her Nana”: Dear Amy, Yes, I took your advice. My husband and I were so very close to our granddaughter until this tough divorce. She chose to stay with her dad who continually said harmful things about her mother, my daughter, and particularly me.

It hurt me deeply when she continually shunned us and I almost gave up, but you advised me to keep at it no matter what.

And that’s what I did. You said to be there when she was ready.

Well, after five years, when she was about 17, she slowly started letting us back in.

She and her mother became very close again. And she became our loving granddaughter again.

She’s now 26 and a sweet and caring young woman.

I’m glad to have the opportunity to finally thank you.

– Still Her Nana


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October 1, 2023