“I’ve just been informed that my newlywed daughter and her husband have decided they don’t want children; son-in-law is getting the snip. She is my third and last child, the third and last to marry, and now the third and last to tell me children are not planned for one reason or another. So the door is closing, officially, on my ever having a grandchild. I’ve been cheerful and neutral in response, but privately I’m so disappointed by this.
I obviously had my chance to choose my family size, and did (partly because I hoped that with three kids the odds of eventual grandchildren were very good), and I have no right to wish for any other outcome, but I’m just so bummed out. Something I always assumed I would get to enjoy someday is now gone forever. Has anyone else out there experienced this? How do you get through the funk? (I recognize that this is not nearly at the same level of tragedy as, say, wanting to be a parent but not having had children of my own.)”

I appreciate that you have healthy perspective on this, despite having every reason to be bummed out. I think it’s totally normal to be sad; what parent hasn’t been up all night with a baby and thought, wow, it’ll be great to be able to enjoy one of these when I can also hand him back.

It’s also a sadness you definitely share with others–

In fact, I’d like to add a discussion point for the forum: Not only are their a lot of would-be grandparents whose children chose not to have babies, but there are also a lot of kids whose grandparents have died or live far away or just aren’t terribly involved. So, has anyone out there acquired a grandkid/grandparent-type relationship by other means? Neighbor, family friend, volunteer at the church’s babysitting room … ?