Dear Ann Landers, Please tell the grandparents in your reading audience to cultivate a warm and loving relationship with their grandchildren before it is too late.
I have a 9-year-old son and a 7-year-old daughter. We visit my mother every week, but I'm about ready to call it quits. Every time we get together, Grandma picks on my daughter and totally ignores my son. She feels it is her place to correct and discipline them. My children's behavior is fine, Ann. They are good kids and well-behaved. My mother freaks out over issues that make very little sense and bother no one but her.
Mom doesn't seem to realize that she is going to leave my children no happy memories of their grandmother. The way things stand now, they don't want to be around her because she is always "bossing them around." I love Mom dearly, but frankly, I do not LIKE her. I wish my children could enjoy having a grandmother, but this doesn't seem possible. Please, Ann, I know she reads you every day. Maybe if she sees this in the newspaper, it will help. -- J.W. in Southern Calif.
Dear Southern Cal., I doubt that reading your letter in the paper will change Grandma's behavior. She sounds pretty set in her ways, but it's worth a shot. For her sake, I hope she can stand back and view her situation with a bit more objectivity. The message, Grandma, is: "Don't try to train them. Just love them."