Ask Amy: Can I get custody of my grandchild?

Dear Amy: I’ve been invited several times on my travels to distant states to visit old friends, but when I did I was surprised at how inhospitable some people are.

They know when I’ll be there and I’ll call an hour before I arrive. Just last week I visited someone I have known since elementary school.

She was waiting for me on her porch.

It was very hot and I had been driving for hours. She sipped iced tea. I had to ask for a glass of water.

Then she announced that I was going out with her for lunch (so would have to pay) and that would be enough for us to eat for the rest of the day.

She offered me to stay there that night.

Several times I had to ask for a glass of water. It was 95 degrees outside. After chatting all day, I was shown to my bed. Neither shower nor towels were offered.

I got up early and her husband made himself a cup of Keurig coffee.

I waited for him to offer me a cup, but he didn’t. I asked for a glass of water. When I left (fled) this friend said, “Oh, come back and visit next year.”

I cannot imagine treating a guest like that.

What do you think?

– Angry guest

Dear Upset: I agree this is not the way to treat a guest.

Some people don’t seem to have the skills to roll out the welcome mat and this could be because they haven’t traveled much themselves. One way to learn how to be a gracious host is to be a grateful guest.

I am not sure if you really qualify as a Fully Invited Guest, however, as it appears that you have contacted these friends more as a stopover in your travels.

Years ago, at the very last minute, I had a call from a distant friend and offered her a bed for the night. She brought her own sheets and towels, tea, cereal, etc., almost like camping. I was impressed that she was so ready to be such a guest without a trace. (I was very happy when she agreed to stay a second night.)

You might feel less drained and thirsty if you had brought some of your own supplies with you – just in case.

Dear Amy: My daughter has four children.

Three of their children were given to the other parent / grandparent to raise.

I am not allowed to visit her. I’m not even sure where they live.

My fourth grandchild (my granddaughter) is currently with my daughter.

Every time my daughter gets angry or mad at me, she no longer allows me to see her child.

My daughter is very manipulative.

At this point, I believe that my daughter is verbally and emotionally abusing the child. Could that be a reason for me to get custody?

Or how do I fix this so I can still see my granddaughter?

– Disturbed in KS

Disturbed: If you believe that your daughter is abusing this child, you must report this to the child protection service and have them examined.

It’s unclear whether these other grandparents raise their other children through a casual or formal arrangement, but since three children have been taken out of their care, I assume she is known to CPS.

You should contact a CPS social worker to discuss your options, but more importantly, to try to protect this child.

As long as your daughter is raising her child in her own household, all parents have the right to refuse contact between their child and anyone else.

In my opinion, however, the more you allow your daughter to use her child’s access as a tool to control you, the more she will do just that.

Manipulation only works if you allow yourself to be manipulated.

Dear Amy: The letter from “Blank Slate Mom”, who terminated her parental rights, was one of the saddest I have read in a long time.

Calling them “inadequate parents” accumulated – and was totally offensive.

I’m disappointed in you.

– Upset

Dear Upset: The reason I labeled this mother “inadequate” was because in her question she claimed that she was not an “inadequate mother”. However, abandoning your young child and relocating several states is exactly the definition of “inadequate” and I wanted to make that clear.

(You can email Amy Dickinson at [email protected] or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook.)

Comments are closed.