Blake’s Advice Column
My husband has a contentious relationship with our grandchildren. He generally is a fun, happy and interesting person. But by nature he is not “hands on” when it comes to children. Our son and daughter have great spouses and five young grandsons. He stands around like a warden waiting for something to happen, then just yells at them. It is clear he doesn’t enjoy being with them, and their mood changes from happy to surly when he’s around. I have had two major talks trying to encourage him to have a positive, interactive relationship with the boys, to no avail. He reacts as if I’m the only one who sees this. Should I just drop this issue?
From Lansing, Michigan
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In reference to his grandchildren, it sounds like your husband is a mean bitter man. To level the playing field, I think you should give the grandchildren some tips on how to be even meaner and nastier! Here are some suggestions you might want to consider. Tell the children to ask him what is his pants size and shirt size because they want to collectively save up to purchase him a gift. Then for the kids to explain to him that it’s not a suit, they just want the idea of his dimensions, so they can buy him a casket that they hope he’ll be needing in the near future. Or, have the kids ask him what is he blackmailing you with, that is forcing you to spend your life with him? And this idea will get his attention. Let him overhear his grandchildren in an intense debate on hot he’ll be seconds after he dies, after God pronounces His judgment on him. And lastly, maybe using a historic reference might make that combative geezer rethink his unprovoked rage. Anytime the children interact with him, have them call him “Grandpa Hitler”. And when they first see him, to consistently ask him why is he above ground, rather than watching tv in his bunker? I hope this helps.