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Left out of family fun; Go back home where you’re comfortable and enjoy your life

Dear Annie: I am a single mother to my one daughter, who is now 29. She moved from our hometown because that’s where she met her husband, and she now has a son, my grandson, who is 1 1/2 years old. She asked me when she first got pregnant if I would move down to where they live to babysit Monday through Friday for them. Long story short, I did move. I left all my friends and family behind, although they are only two hours away. And now she decided to have him in day care, so I only babysit on an as-needed basis.

It has been and still is very hard for me being in this new city. I don’t know anybody and am still single, having left my companion when I moved down here. And it seems like the only time I see my grandson is when she needs me to babysit him.

Recently, she signed him up for toddler soccer, and I told her that I wanted to go to see him play. This past Saturday, they went, and she never asked me to join them. Her husband sometimes has to work on Saturdays, and it seems like she only invites me to things when he is working and not able to attend. I am feeling kind of hurt about this but don’t want to bring it up to her because I don’t want to start a huge conversation.

I have been lonely and have been living here for a year now. I’m thinking about moving back to my hometown but I’m torn because of not being able to see my grandson as often.

My question is, do you think I am being unreasonable to feel hurt that she doesn’t ask me to attend things when her husband is going? Should I move back to my hometown, which is two hours away, so I can have a social life? — Homesick

Dear Homesick: It sounds like freaked-out first-time mom was the one who requested you move to her neighborhood. Now that she’s in the groove of her parenting duties, she no longer needs the extra hands — which doesn’t mean she doesn’t appreciate you but does mean she is preoccupied with her immediate family.

Move back to your hometown and reconnect with your partner. Sitting by the phone waiting for invites does not make for a fulfilling social life.

Dear Annie: My son’s father has recently told me he wants to do everything he can for our son, who is almost four. However, ever since our son was born, I have barely had any help. All he did was go to work in the morning and come home to play video games.

Our son used to go to his father to spend time with him only to be pushed away and told “no” because his father was busy playing a game. For that, my son is a mama’s boy, which is fine with me.

Now I’m with someone else who sees my worth, and we have a little girl due Dec. 26. We are also engaged.

I’m not sure how I feel about my son’s father suddenly wanting to be in our son’s life and claiming he will do whatever it takes. You don’t choose when you feel like being a parent. Any advice? — Stressed-Out Mom From NY

Dear Stressed-Out Mom: Yes, his paternal instinct is kicking in four years late — but for your son’s sake, it’s better late than never.

He’s already missed out on moments he’ll never get back. But don’t let your resentment toward him prevent your son from ever getting to know his father. An imperfect parent is better than an absent one.

Start small. Invite your son’s father to join your family for dinner once a week. If his commitment to your son is indeed more than just a phase, gradually loosen the reins.

Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to dearannie@creators.com.

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