Dear Ann Landers, I just read the letter from "Nearly Smothered in the U.S.A.," who complained that her in-laws visit every two months, call twice a week, constantly mail cards and gifts, and take up precious "family time." I have a very similar situation, but I feel quite differently about it.
Although my husband's parents live more than 1,000 miles away, they consider the family a priority and sacrifice their weekends and hard-earned money to visit us every six weeks. My mother-in-law went back to work part time to finance these trips. We phone each other every two days because our 3-year-old daughter and younger son have developed such a close relationship with their grandparents that they insist on hearing their voices often. My in-laws also mail cards and gifts frequently, and our children love to receive them.
The whole family looks forward to the grandparents' visits because our children get undivided, one-on-one, loving attention from them, and my husband and I are free to spend some much-needed time alone or with our friends.
It's too bad "Smothered" is so ungrateful for her in-laws' attention. Her attitude is selfish, and she is denying her children a wonderful relationship with their grandparents. -- Loved and Fortunate in Dallas
Dear Dallas, Your response was a case study in what good family relationships are all about. You are doing a splendid job, and I congratulate you.
Hi! It's Margo here. I'd love to know what you think of the letters -- and the answers!
Also, any additional thoughts you might have. Thanks!
Sorry--house guests every two months and twice weekly phone calls would be too much for me, too. I think it is unfair to label the woman who feels this way as selfish. The writer of this letter seems to be very proud of herself to the point of critisizing someone else's point of view. I hope she doesn't break her arm patting herself on the back.
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Dear Readers, , whatever they needed I provided. What really hurt my son and I the most was the obituary - we were not mentioned at all. Our friends (mine and hers) were appalled. I was embarrassed and upset for not just me, but for my son-who loved her also. I never been so upset. Her x-husband put his wife and kids and their grandchildren in the obituary, who my girlfriend barely knew. They live an hour away from us. I know its silly to be mad over a little section of the newspaper, but it still hurts. Will time let this devastating loss of her and this article ever go away? I am so angry at this whole situation, its not like we can go and rewrite an obituary notice.