The original forum on this was full and it is too good to let go because of the number......so I am starting another one.
Dear phoggie-very sorry to hear you are estranged from your child as I am as well. I have found support and understanding at estranged stories-if you would like to check it out I think you will be surprised at the amount of info and caring people-take care and have a peaceful Easter
The link to the discussion group that motherlode mentions is below:
Here is a link that might be useful: Estranged Stories
thanks imaginny-happy easter to you
(Tried to post to the first one, i.e., "Part I" - all full - SO GLAD for this "Part II" - how I NEED to post this NOW, and GET IT OFF MY CHEST, so here goes...!!!) Oh wow, this is so true for me. My 22 and 18 yr. old daughters are close with one another and their dad, who lets them do AND say whatever they want and who has a larger house so they naturally both wanted to live with him after the divorce 12 years ago. Now that they are both adults, not only is the older one estranged from me (she and I never got along well, so it's no big surprise), but the younger one, a new adult as of Jan. '09, with whom I used to be very close from her birth to about age 14, is nearing that now. Their dad basically "emotionally kidnapped" both of them - he speaks condescendingly to me whenever I stop by and they learned it from him!! He is their "hero," as they can do no wrong in his eyes, or he in their eyes - it is always "party time" at his house, so why wouldn't they favor him? Yet he has done them a great disservice. I can't do anything about it. Yet I did everything for them, all the "dirty work" thru' the years, from diapers and bottles to providing financial security for their educations and other basic needs - both work part-time, but they sure need additional funds, so they really have taken advantage of me - one is in a design trade school, the other will attend a state university in the fall to study veterinary medicine. Their studies may seem great - but what am I left with for all my blood, sweat and toil?! Very little at all!! IÂve even had to help them with a few legal issues like an "almost DUI" when my younger one was a minor (age 17), and a couple of moving violations. My younger one was somewhat friendly to my 2nd husband (whom I married in 2002) in recent years, before she hit 18; but now, neither one of them shows the slightest interest in him or inclination to be friendly to him at all, despite knowing I am close with him and he has done a lot to make my life better in terms of companionship etc., plus the fact that he has tried to be friendly to them when there has been an opportunity. But his and my lives and activities (work, hobbies, etc.) mean nothing to them. The last 4 or 5 Mother's Days when we have gotten together, they have made little "time slots" for me, quickly giving me gifts such as bath products (oh wow), eating lunch "on the fly," and then saying "gotta go - see ya." THIS Mother's Day - I don't even think there will be any get together because I can't take the one-sidedness any longer - i.e., the totally one-way effort. Bottom line: I somehow must come to grips w/ this and somehow get to where I'm at peace w/ it. Thank you for your site, and I hope someone reads this post Â I also empathize with all of you who are in the same ÂboatÂ that I am. Thanks for reading this, if you do.
Here is a link that might be useful: Home of Nina Beck and All Key'd Up Musical Groups
My story is almost yours in reverse. Mum was the primary caregiver so they felt a natural loyalty, plus, she kept the house and I was trying to earn a living to look after everyone so custody for me was not an option, and the girls probably wouldn't have opted to go with me.
Mum was responsible in terms of feeding and dressing but was not great at looking after the stuff she didn't want to, and emotionally was pretty messed-up and bankrupt, had a fearful temper etc. I stayed as long as I did to act as a buffer for one, between them and their mother.
They grew up listening to her tirades and emotional and verbal abuse of me, and not surprisingly learned to speak to me the same way. The eldest more or less grew out of it but is very coldly materialistic at times, and used to brag to her sister how she could manipulate me (ex actually was grown up enough to discuss that with me) until I caught on, she's bipolar which complicates things.
Youngest never got past looking at me how her mother saw/portrayed me. Eldest did figure that part out, and can see I am a good human being now I'm out of that situation.
My heart goes out to anyone estranged from/used by their kids, and I would *never* presume to judge someone who moves away/severs contact with their kids in those circumstances when it's too painful or they are being used or played off against each other.
When you look at the 'horrifying' statistics of fathers who do not seem to have any contact with their kids after the failure of a relationship, I know a lot of them are probably deadbeats, but equally, a lot of them have probably tried very hard to remain close but for their own health and sanity have had to remove themselves. It's not something done lightly, trust me.
I myself moved away because of compelling financial circumstances, my eldest was moving to another city to go to uni (and keeps as far from her mother and sister as she can, if not by word but by deed) and I had not seen the youngest for about 4 years. Not a choice I wanted to make by any means.
I truly feel for those who are estranged from their children for reasons that are truly beyond their control. However, as a child who is estranged from one parent, I recognize that there are two sides to every story. I do not speak to my father and have not spoken to him in over a year and went without speaking to him for many years earlier. Truth is, I don't really care for him. There is no hate or ill-will. But due to numerous things he has done over the years, it's just gotten to the point where I do not care. I have my issues with my mother -- any child does -- but for her I care dearly and would never go without talking to her for any significant period of time. This may sound cold, but that is how I feel. My other siblings do not speak to our father either. I know for a fact that he tells everyone that its our mother's fault, that she has poisoned us against him, etc. etc. He fails to accept any blame for the way his relationship is with his children. It's always easy to blame someone else -- the other parent, the adult child, the adult child's spouse/significant other. A lot of times it may be impossible to break the estrangement, but perhaps if more parents estranged from their children would be honest with themselves about what they have done wrong to contribute to the estrangement, there might be a possibility of saving the relationship in more cases.
Imaginny is a huge fake, and my mother. I am reading about me in amazement.
Wait I gotta crawl back into my tent, chew some tobaccy, you know in the trailer park I live in with my unemployed husband lacking in self esteem, whose dead mother plotted against mine.
You would just die if you actually saw or knew me. (banjos playing in the background)