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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Stubborn Family Members

    My grandmother threw a fit last night over my father saying that since my brother and I are both extremely German he finds it funny that my brother likes to hear about the Irish side of the family and is much more into that part of the tree.
    She started insisting that my dad's family is French and we're all a bunch of idiots for thinking otherwise. My dad's grandparents immigrated from Germany with their young son (my dad's bio father). The only reference of a family member in France is a German soldier settling in Normandy. However my grandmother has blatantly said the she will not talk to me until I get this "stupid nonsense about being German out of my head".
    Being about 3/4 German, 1/8 Irish and 1/8 French (my maternal great grandmother was French and married to a German) and living in one of the most German citites I think its a bit ridiculous.
    My mom's genealogist cousin has been looking into it and says that after nosing around for a day it seems my dad's family is German and not French but without knowing birth dates, death dates, etc he can't find much else.
    Do I write my grandmother off as crazy? Because after this last visit I do not look forward to seeing her again which will keep my infrequent visits infrequent.

  2. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Obviously I can't verify through an online forum whether you are German, French, Chinese or Martian, but it sounds like you know what you are. Typically grandparents know more about one's heritage and genealogy than do their grandchildren, but you have to take into consideration your grandma's age and the possibility of dementia developing, along with the possibility of her denial of your roots perhaps stemming from feelings over WWII. She is either crazy, lying, or telling the truth, and I have no way of knowing which it is. The question is, do you want to let that stand in the way of your relationship with her? Grandmas aren't going to be in our lives for very long. Regardless of the question of your roots, your grandma is a very big living part of those roots, and her days are numbered. She is the one who expressed that she didn't want to talk to you anymore, and if that's true then perhaps the choice is out of your hands. But if she was just saying that in frustration, as I suspect may be the case, then it seems like the right thing to do would be to forgive her and nurture your relationship with her. It's up to you how much your grandma means to you. If you have stayed away from her for self-protection because she is a cruel woman, then you may need to keep doing just that, but I don't know that an argument over one's heritage is worth severing a relationship over.
    Last edited by alzora; February 26th, 2013 at 09:07 AM.

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Great Lakes
    Alzora is wise.

    It's not something I'd let stand in my way. I'd still go visit grandma and if she brings it up, I'd casually nod and agree with her (even if I didn't agree), and maybe ask a few questions. Perhaps there's a reason she's adamant you're French?
    ** The opinions expressed above are not meant to be reflective of Nameberry as a whole but are my opinion and mine alone. **

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  4. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    I have no idea why she started insisting that I'm French. Especially considering she has some very strong opinions against France. It was out of the blue.
    But my grandmother and I haven't had a good relationship in 5-6 years since I decided that Catholicism was too uptight and I started looking at religion differently than her. She often asks my opinion in controversial topics and get mad if I give my opinion or refuse to give my opinion in the attempts to prevent a fight. And since every difference of opinion ends in "I'm not talking to you" I keep my distance and visit at the holidays despite her living 1/2 a mile away.

  5. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Liverpool, England
    Quote Originally Posted by thefuturemrsb View Post
    Do I write my grandmother off as crazy? Because after this last visit I do not look forward to seeing her again which will keep my infrequent visits infrequent.
    My grandma insisted that her side of the family were Scottish. When I looked into it I found that all of them were very Irish. My mum thinks it stems from my grandma being told not to mention that the family were Irish because of prejudices in England when they first moved over.

    ★ August Eli Benedict ★ Bram ★ Casimir Mordecai ★ Edmond John Meirion ★ Gillon ★
    ★ Jory Leander ★ Julian Charles ★ Macsen ★ Magnus ★ Vasiliy ★


    ★ Aira Rose ★ Arietta ★ Clover ★ Delphina ★ Eleni ★ Fiorella ★ Hester Isobel ★
    ★ Iris ★ Lilah ★ Merit ★ Sylvia ★

    Sorry to anyone who read TSI. First draft was terrible. Second drafting now.

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