Adult Estrangmtt from Parents?
I'm a 40-yr-old adult woman contemplating separating from my parents--hopefully temporarily.
My eldest child-a 10 yr old daughter-has a medical condition requiring regular medical attention and daily medication --nothing so obvious as diabetes. My parents see my children about one-3-day weekend every three months. I usually speak my parents with a "family update" about every 2-3 weeks. Our contacts are usually positive and supportive.
Before children, I began a professional career. I had hoped to have children earlier in life, at 22 to 24....but my first child was born when I was 30. So, I had participated in a successful career that was intellectually challenging & quite interesting. I've backed off to part-time and worked very hard at balancing work & homelife (with my home coming first) in the last 10 years.
It seems that whenever I "relax" about the kids...my parents 'swoop' in and make me feel miserable about how I'm parenting them. 6 years ago - I was "favoring my son over my daughter" (I disagree), next it was I was too strict (don't think so), ...then blah blah...today it was that my parents disagree with my daughter's medical treatment.
I'm deeply thankful that my parents care enough to be aware of/concerned with "V's" treatment. Yet, it's SO DIFFICULT to talk through our different perspectives on her treatment. When my father (the spokesman) mentions an opinion, then it is offered as "fact" or "undeniable." But my responses are labled as "justifications" or "posturing"...yet all my information can be backed up with doctors' reports...
or curiously enough, the growth charts in my parents' home. Each grand child has a chart, and each is marked regularly. My daughter's...shows growth that is equal to any other grandchild's progress.
In my opinion, my daughter is slim, happy & attractive; since she's not like me...then her treatment is inappropriate. While I've grown into a very attractive, athletic woman ( ;-) still-at 40) I was a very tall, gawky, chubby, ~~unhappy~~ child--I was 5'6" at 6th grade.
My daughter seems happy and ... generally Okay. My parents want her to grow to be bigger and taller than me. Fine! My 5 ft 6 in is not so tall...but I am the tallest woman on my "side" of the family. My Mom is 3-4 inches shorter than I ... the next nearest female is only 5'.0" or 4.'11"
So, if all my family--all my children--are growing, doing well in school, socially well-adjusted - and my husband and I have a happy marriage....am I doing so wrong?
After many months/years...of struggling with my parents' disapproval...I'm tempted to just...become less available. (This thought hurts me to my core...yet our current situation hurts my family too.)
They seem to only believe their perspective. I suppose I will always be a child in their eyes. My husband has a terrific relationship with my folks...my joke is that they prefer him over me. He and I agree completely about the medical treatment for our daughter. But it's me alone that gets "cubbyholed" with one of my parents to be informed that they deeply disagree with the treatment.
I'm tempted to ask my husband to sit down with them alone and address the topic. They like him, respect him, and .... he's not one of their children. But I hate to ask my hubs to take this on. I suppose I'm struggling with doing what I (and hubs) feel is best...and struggling for my parents' approval, when they don't agree. (BTW, hubs & I agree 100%)
When my parents tell my I'm wrong..I'm miserable, which rolls down to make the whole family miserable. Of course I don't tell the kids what makes me so sad--but they're not stupid. I feel torn between what I deeply believe is best for my immediate family and with my seeking my parents' approval.
I don't know what to do.... DDD