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mothers estranged from adult children

Posted by patticakes_1951 (My Page) on
Mon, Jul 28, 08 at 10:49

This is my first time on the web site so this is a test message. I read some the messages last night and feel
for the first time like there are people who have the same pain I do from the estrangement of my children.I have 2 sons in their 30's and a 20 year ol grandson that I love very much but I think I have given up. The last time my oldest called(2 months ago) and said he was finished with me I didn't even cry. the heart still hurts but there were no tears.
Sometimes you just have to walk away or die from a broken heart.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

patticakes,
I am happy I found this site a month or so ago too. Our son, our only son, has estranged himself from us too. He is 29. I don't cry so much anymore, but the pain and disappointment is still so deep. It is coming on a year now and I don't see anything changing anytime soon. At first he would say that in a month he would start talking to us, then it was after Christmas, now its been told to me that he will never talk to us again. It's like the longer he is with her (DIL) the more brainwashed he becomes. I don't see anything changing until she is out of the picture.
Hang in there. There are more families going through this than I would have ever imagined.


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I didn't think that anyone was going through what I am when I first found this site. I was to say the least "shocked" that so many parents (especially moms) are suffering like this! I have 2 adult children 1 son 25 and daughter 30 and a 17yr old daughter. The 2 oldest ones (especially my oldest daughter have just disowned me, and the hard part is I really don't know why. My youngest is with her dad right now because I have health problems and to make a long story short ..he took her up north (300 miles away)so she would be able to be a bit more stable than I could manage. But she's been there a year now and she has always had a great relationship with me, but now she herself is rude to me and acts different and will barely talk to me. So, yeah, this site is amazing! I truly believe my kids are brainwashed by their dad too. He is controlling and wants me completely out of the picture. He is insecure at the idea of having to share our children and their lives. I still hurt so bad, way down in my soul. I stopped crying too, for the most part, but it doesn't take much to get the tears going, a song or something that reminds me of better days. My oldest has my 5 grandkids and I don't see them either. I just had to put it all in gods hands, It's just too much. But, on a GOOD note..I wanted to tell you that I went to the library today and found the most unique book it's called " Don't Blame Your Mother"! It's a thick book, so I've just have been reading the parts that apply to my situation, it's basically about adult children(particularly girls) that have relationship issues with their Moms. It goes on to explain in detail how and why adult children tend to blame Mom for everything and anything that they can think of, causing estrangements. It surprised me to read that daughters alot of the time blame their mothers, because they don't feel like they can measure up to what their mother is or was when they were younger. It's written for Adult children..but it is very enlightening for parents who are estranged. If you get the chance look for it. I'm gonna read it some more and then send it to my daughter. I'm so glad you came to this place, their is so much support here and sometimes just putting your thoughts in print can ease the anxiety. Of course all the words of compassion and support are a blessing. So, hang in there, we're all in the same boat. Good bless Janet


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Pamb_100 and jlwow thank you both for responding to my message. My story is so very long and complicated. I beat myself up and go over and over my mistakes but I can't change them. I lost my mother when I was 16 to colon cancer. I would have never left her. I miss her so much
even now 40 yrs later. My parents did not have a clue about being parents. They did the best they knew how to do.
I never blamed them. I just wanted to do it better and
have my children live productive successful lives. I dreamed of the day I would have a DIL she was to be like a daughter to me. I have 2 boys and a grandson. So i looked forward to this relationship. Of course it has never happened. My kids had a bad father, I married and had children with the wrong man. He was irresponsible and could not keep a job. He had grndiose ideas about getting rich quick. He wasted so much time and effort. At times I was working at least two jobs and sometimes three. After I divorced him in 1998 I was better off financially without
him within 3 months. Of course I was alone and continued to work all the time. I stayed with him until the kids were gone for their sake. What a mistake!! They are just like him. My 401 is gone trying to help them, I will never be able to retire. I bought cars, wshers and dryers, clothes, paid car insurance, paid rent. You name it.
I accidently pulled my car over a tree limb in front of my oldest house one time. I couldn't move my car. He drove off and left me there. The week before I had a brand new Washer and dryer delivered to their home. Nothing I ever did was good enough. He has been married 4 times and is now separated with his 4th wife. I have had a parade of evil DIL. The first one loved me but they were so young it did not work. Since then it has been hell. My 19 yr old grandson was a greatcomfort to me until he turned 16.
Hegets more like his dad everyday. I stayed in my sons life after much verbal and emotional abuse just because of
my grandson. He used my grandson to hurt me. When my grandson wasborn I left the hospital crying because he would not let me hold him. It got worse after that. I have pretty much given up. I needed this site with others going through the same thing years ago. I am empty like a shell
my heart is broken and I don't know how to fix it. I isolate myself from my friends because i should care about their lives but I don't want to hear about their relationships with their children. What is wrong with me?
I married a wonderful man 10 yrs ago. He tried with my kids
but says and I quote" you would never allow a man to disrespect you the way your children do". He took such good care of his mother until she died that he just does not understand.Thank you for listening. Now I have to clean my house. Later.............


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

patticakes,
When you wrote that your parents didn't have a clue as to what they were doing, but you know they did their best. I feel the same way. My dad came from a really messed up family but he did the best he could for me. I appreciated everything he ever did for me. My husbands family was a mess, but we both did the best we could with our son. I don't think he will ever know until he is a parent himself, (and I pray even then,) how much of a sacrifice being a parent is.

I worry that the more time that goes on, the more estranged he will become. But what's the alternative? Chasing him hasn't helped, crying hasn't helped. The only thing left is to leave him completely alone. I feel badly not trying anymore but I have done everything I can think of. He was given so much in his life, more than I ever had. To see how he has turned out makes me so sad and angry.


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Sigh..It just saddens me to read these incredible stories of mothers who are absolutely heart-broken and in despair over the adult children that they gave birth to, raised and put them over anything else in the world. Sometimes, I am feeling emotionally better than before. But tonight, I am sad, and angry and extremely dissapointed that my kids are letting their dad(who is abusive) to pull them into his web of deceit I worry about them. They don't really understand what he's doing, they trust him. I KNOW what he's doing! I never have talked bad about him to the kids, I still will not tell them that he's selfishly trying to destroy me ..through them. I feel like if I did, then I'm no better than he is, because it's putting them in the middle, I don't want them to have to choose but I guess they either have to unfortunately go along with him or take the chance of losing their father(he told my youngest that if she visted me he would disown her).ahh! No sense in going to the friend of the court, she is 17 and my older kids might think that I'm just interfering. Mothers do need an advocate though, for things like this. Someone who can go to bat for them. Even if its just to order mom, dad, kids etc into counseling personal and together..regardless if they want to or not, so everyone can have their say, and the counselor can mediate. I know it can be done if everyone cooperates and wants to go, but most of the time I don't think that any one would participate willingly..except Mom. I never treated my mother like this, she died 8 yrs ago, and I still am grieving over losing her. I consider myself a really good mother as far as raising my kids and stuff. I was always there for them and didnt drink or take drugs or run the streets, but I must have not spent enough time teaching them about unconditional love, family sticks together through good and bad times, I wonder since when the rules changed and you can just disown your mom cause dad says they'd be better off to. Funny, we have been divorced for about 14 yrs and he's been married 6 times since then! Yeah. That says alot about him huh? I never remarried, I loved him just was afraid of the abuse, at one time I was worried that if I didnt leave I could do something bad to him that I would regret, I knew it was time to part with him when he would go somewhere and I hoped he would stay gone for a long time. I often wish that the people I meet on here, lived close together, so we could support each other in person. Know what I mean? Well time for bed, take care and write soon.


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I would never have treated my mother this way or allowed my spouse to mistreat her the way my children and their spouses have disrespected me.
We have problems with boundaries. My son talked about personal things in my marriage to his father, which really are none of his business. When my son came over, he would talk about drugs, booze, and sex in front of my smaller children. He was rude and hurtful. He accused me of stuffing my bra. He made fun of my smaller children for their accomplishments. He makes fun of me going to church and points out all my failures. As if my real failures arent enough by themselves, he adds in his own inaccurate memories of the past. The only time we hear from him is when he needs money, or his laundry done. He has three children and I have only seen his18 month old child once.
I also am not getting along with my daughters husband. He doesnt work and is a replica of her father. He lied to us when we first met him, saying that he had been offered a full basketball scholarship and refused it. We found out he had not even graduated high school. He is a thief and has been in trouble with the law. He talks terrible to my daughter and when they come to visit, they let their children tear up the house and misbehave. He has a chip on his shoulder and is always looking for a fight. He threatened one of my small children, and then said disrespectful things about me to my husband. Since he couldnt hurt me enough that way, they say I will never see my grandchildren again. My daughter chameleons along with whatever he dictates.
Im torn between sadness that I do not see them, and logic that it is probably for the best.
I dont know. If I am truly hurting my children, than I dont want to be in their lives. I just want everybody to be happy.


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First of all I would like to say I KNOW it's got to be next to impossible to understand this blog if you've never been in this situation, which I know has been said before but for some it seems to be impossible to accept. The advise from people who have never "been in our shoes" keeps coming as if their lack of experience in this domain makes the feel "entitled" to give advise or critique the ones that live this on a daily basis.
Let me offer those of you who think you are great mother's because this didn't happen to you a straight forward answer to what I know to be true concerning your opinion/advise:
For once, lack of experience doesn't make you any more knowledgeable about the subject material.
Two- You are no "better mother's" than we were/are-believe it or not
Three-We don't "value" you're opinion; because you haven't been there-so you DON'T know what you are talking about.
Three-We are TRYING to heal and you are NOT helping
Four-Please, if you cannot support our "mission" find a mission you can support
I realize you are trying to help but please-realize you cannot help here. Experience is required.


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Well said Straycat.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I guess life does move on, with or as in our cases "without" our children. I wanted to let you all know I stopped doing the expected...One of my children's birthday's came and went and I didn't do the usual -trying to call-leaving messages-and getting no response. I also didn't send him a birthday card or a present.
I've read: "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results."
It makes sense and the "in my face" pain I bring upon myself is not productive in my life. So, no more same ol, same ol.
I've know (they told me) they want me out, I'll be all out of their lives, completely. Like I said in another post, unfortunately, this has to be a permanent situation for me, as I know I can't go through this again without permanent damage to my body, mind and soul. It is so sad to know so many loving mothers have loved, and given so much of their soul to their children to be disowned....Gosh; I have to wonder "where did these kids come from?" It's like an alien came down took our children and replaced them with these cold, distant, unloving people we used to call our children.
Well, it's a good thing I enjoyed every minute I had with them as they grew, because they grew away. I keep looking for answers I know are not there. What always comes to mid in the end is what to say to people who ask about my children, without looking like a terrible person in their eyes. I've been just stating the facts, and in a way that doesn't stimulate conversation in that direction. I tell them they are doing well (as far as I know), happy, and successful. Truthfully they are and I feel no need to share the ache that is in my heart.
I want you all to know I think about you daily. Your support helps me gain strength to carry on and I hope someday to be able to offer a way to lighten your load.
Please know you are important-each and every one of us so do something 'nice" for yourselves.


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I have an adult, son. He was the funniest, brightest, person I ever knew. One day without warning, he left. He didn't take his belongings, and didn't leave a note. Of course I looked for him. When I found him, he had moved in with his girlfriend and her mother. He said he was just staying the night. He hasn't been home in two years. He was everything to us. But he is gone. He says I should have been supportive of him marrying his girlfriend while they were in high school. Since I suggested that they wait awhile, they feel that I hate the girl. They say I can never be forgiven. My whole family blames me for him staying away. Am I a bad mother?


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If a girl friend or her mother gets hold of an immature young man, they can change him into someone we don't know. It is definitely brain washing, year after year of it. It's something we are not prepared for, something we could not even imagine happening. My youngest son was tricked into marrying his girl friend. The mother advised the girl to get him drunk and sleep with him. The mom said he is the type of guy who will marry you. That is what she did and they laugh about it right in front of him. I used to wonder why I wasn't suffering like so many of the Moms in this forum, the only difference is that mine happened slowly over the years, so I was not instantly cut out of his life. Also I don't think about it often, when I do I immediately get up and do something to keep my mind busy, Nintendo works. LOL


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stargazzer, I so agree that 'if a girl friend or her mother gets a hold of an immature young they can change him into someone we don't. know.' What true words those are. My son did struggle to keep his head above water in the beginning, but my dil just kept piling more and more on until he was finally drowning. It was either do it her way, or lose his mind. My son didn't and doesn't know which way is up, and I know my dil's mom has helped her in her persuit. Dils mom and dad have the same kind of relationship, where her mom is superior and controls and the dad just feels lucky to have someone who wants him! This is what these people convince our kids of(and especially sons, though there are plenty of daughtes dumping on their moms as well.)

I look at my dils dad and I think how sad and pathetic. The guy loses his job, & gets ridiculed over it by my dil. My son knew that it was wrong, yet he thought he could change my dil to a better person. My son thought he was in control when he didn't have a clue and still doesn't it.

The girl is evil no question. She does things behind his back and he never catches on. She is literally suffocating him with her presence, she won't allow him to be with us alone. I know if we ever got him alone that maybe we could appeal to any sensibility or love he has left, and she knows it too.

anniebal


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My son, 23years old, got married on June 6, 2006 so that his anniversary would be 666. His wife is tatttooed, pierced, and rude, and he is a law student. They live in a house I put the deposit on (they make the payments) and live off of student loans refusing to work, and complaining at me all the time that I am not helping them enough. I am so tired of being yelled at and disrespected and unappreciated, and at the same time I am so sad that things are like this. He tells me things she says about me once in a while, and she is constantly criticizing his little sister and us, I wish I knew how to make this all stop. If I thought he cared, I would try to make him see this, but I know he doesn't. This is a very bad time for me and my husband. I know how some of these people feel, and it is strange and disconcerting, and makes me angry at the same time.


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I can relate to so many of these life stories. I cry at night wondering where the little boy and young man went, who other mothers used to tell me I was so lucky to have such a close relationship with. My son has been living with his girlfriend almost 2 years now and I see less and less of him and he rarely calls. He acts like everything is ok and even says he loves me when I talk to him, but I have not seen him by himself except once in that whole time, and she called after he'd been at our house visiting me and his stepdad (my husband)for less than an hour, to check up on him and tell him to come home . We have had one argument in which I told him I was angry that they seemed to except us to pay the cell phone bill and this and that, while they only thought about themselves, their new stuff and the next trip to see whatever concert was next on the list. Things have been lots chillier since then especially with her, I feel like she is the kind of person who will hold a grudge forever, wants complete control over my son, and doesn't want him to have anyone else in his life except her. She is also really tight with money and seems to cause him to be selfish, which he never was in his whole life until he got hooked up with her. They dated 3-4 years before moving in together and she seems like a permanant fixture. Another thing that happened is when my son was a Sr. in high school, my husband and I adopted a newborn baby from a troubled relative on my husbands side of the family and it took so much of my attention to take care of the sick baby and fight the birth mom in a years-long custody battle, that I feel like I abandoned my son to this girlfriend who was just coming on the scene at that time. I miss him so much but don't know what to do.


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This is my first time writing about this but I need an outlet. First I am sorry for all of you going through the same thing as I am. This has to be the worst ever. I have a 19 year old son who I have not had a relationship with since he was 15. His father alientated him from me with lies, etc. after our divorce. Problem, I miss my son so much I can't go on with my life like it used to be. Half of my heart is gone. I have a beautiful daughter too who is 15 and luckily wasn't affected by the lies from her father. She is with me and she is my shining star. But I don't know how to move forward without my son. My life has been so unhappy since I no longer have my son. I hate the holidays, birthdays, etc. I don't want any of that unless my son is here. I do manage to get through them for my daughter but deep down I hate every holiday and just wish they would go away. My daughter knows I am unhappy, but I try so hard to cover it up. I have alienated all my friends and only work and come home. I dwell on my son everyday and cry for him everyday. Not a day goes by that I don't wish to hold him and tell him how much I love him. Although I write to him everyday via email, I never get a response. I don't know how any of you can move on. I know in life and death we move on, but my son is still on this planet and I want to see him. I want him back in my life. I have tried counseling and that doesn't work. I need help and don't know how to get it. I don't want to be this unhappy the rest of my life. I have a beautiful daughter that I adore and who is a beautiful person. So I don't want her to see me this way anymore. But I don't know how to do it. I need help. Any miracles out there?


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charml, your son's wedding date is very interesting...I wish I had that as an excuse for my own son's behavior :)

You sound like your walking (literally) on egg shells with your son. Where does all this entitlement come from? Society dictated that we build up our kids self esteem and it backfired. These kids think they are so important now, and that nothing else in life is as important as they. My hubby and I are also struggling with this loss, and trying to figure out why. I don't know if I'd give your son anymore money because it sounds like he is abusing you?

Kellykoyote, my heart hurts reading your words. I have never cried as much as I've cried over this past 15 months. It seems like years and years have passed since our relationship with our son tanked. It sure sounds like your sons girl is controlling his behavior. I know poeple will say that he is responsible and ultimately he is, however these girls play tricks on their brains and mangle their common sense to shreds. My dil also won't allow my son to see us by himself, ever. We have tried suggesting that he just have a relationship with us and in time hopefully we will ALL get along, but it is pointless since he won't do it. I think she is afraid to let him come see us since he may get 'sucked' back into our lives again and realize he loves and misses us. I don't know anymore what to think.

jan77222, you do need an outlet and will continue to do so as you struggle thru this painful period in your life. We all feel that part of our heart is gone and are struggling to re-build our lives without our estranged child. How long has it been since all of this happened with your son? I can relate to your not feeling better even with counseling. I think that time is the only healer for our wounds, and I doubt even that will ever heal them completely. I'm happy you have a young daughter that you are close to, and you sound like you are greatful for her being in your life. You need to focus on her, and your own happiness. Let him go for a while, and remind yourself that you deserve to be happy too. Your son is only 19 years old so he has a lot of growing up to do. I believe my son still has growing up to do and he is now 27. I feel that if we can learn to live without them in our lives that if/when they return it will make the event that much more gratifying. Still, I don't think any of us will ever let down our guard again.

What we're all dealing with is very much like a death, and even worse because our children have chosen to be away from us. As moms we fear letting our thoughts of our child go because it is as if we are going to forget them for good. It's almost impossible to let our thinking go elsewhere because of the huge fear of losing them. We must let them go if we are going to move on in life and we deserve to move on and be happy again.

We must acknowledge ourselves, our significant others, and other children and friends too.

I'm struggling not to suffocate my younger son since I know I depend on him even more since this has happened.

anniebal


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I agree that much of the problem I have with my son is his sense of entitlement. It is amazing how he has gone from being this strong, wonderful, intelligent young man to a bully who spits out at me whatever his wife says to him. I have to say, I thought he would see her a little clearer a long long time ago, and it is still not clearing up for him at all. I wish I could tell some of these parents how to stop hurting, and know that it is not them that has ruined this precious relationship. I can only say that I do truly believe that the truth ALWAYS comes out in the end. ALWAYS. In the meantime, know in your heart that you have done the very best you could, wish your child well and know that it is your child's mistake for not appreciating you. My son will come around, I'm sure.... But the damage is done. I think he has no idea that I view him differently now. Not just because he allows his wife to drag him around like she does, but because he tries to pass that on to me. We live and learn.


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charml...

all i can say is.. I feel the same way.. both of my sons are charming, wonderful young men.. I have even had someone come up to me at his wife's house and introduce themselves because they wanted to meet "his mother"...
I too believe in the truth and I also believe that "what comes around goes around".. it seems that if they can treat their mother this way.. why wouldn't someday they treat their wives that way.. these young women who encourage this and get these young men to trash their families, best be careful what they wish for...
I wonder if I will be alive to see the day that my son's children treat them the way he and she have treated us since children learn by example.
I don't think my sons will come around.. they are so caught in the seduction that unless they mess up and get thrown out, they won't ever be back.. even if they get thrown out, they are so "righteous" that I don't think they will be able to come back, because coming back in their minds will be admitting they were wrong, and that just isn't part of their vocabulary. I too view them differently which I guess in some way..helps us move on...


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charml and sarahsmom, I agree that our boys (or children) need to see the truth, but as you state they may not be able to admit they were wrong even if they do see it. My son is very self righteous and he has his wife feeding the fire as they say. I do believe what comes around goes around, and that it's just a matter of time until they too are hurt in some way. I also think of my son differently now, and do believe it's a combination of hurt and survival.

My son was also so charming. Everyone would tell me what a great boy he was, how thoughtful and responsible too. This just wants to me make me scream again and ask why.

anniebal


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anniebal

Thank you for your kind words. I will keep them with me always.

My son wanted to go be with his dad about age 15. He is now 19. I didn't want to let him go as his dad lived 2 states away. I couldn't bare the thought, but I also didn't want him to resent me if I 'made' him stay with me and his sister. Then slowly over the years he became more distant and angry at me. It got to the point he didn't want me showing up at his school or talking to his teachers, counselors or anyone. So that was an excuse for not talking to me. Now that he is out of school, he has no excuse. But he still won't talk to me. His dad really brainwashed him (and I hate to say that, but it is true) he truly hurt my son I think beyond repair. I did have one chance last year with my son when he came to my daughters 8th grade graduation with his dad. While his dad wasn't around he didn't come near me; but later that day all the kids wanted to go to Scandia to play games and miniature golf. So I dropped off my daughter and her friend and my ex dropped off my son and his friends. When I got there I walked up to my son and said, "O.K. I am leaving, call me on my cell if you guys need anything and I will pick up my daughter at a certain time." My son said,"What you're leaving?" I said, "yes". You guys don't want me hanging around here do you? Much to my surprise he did. See his father wasn't around. His father dropped him off and left. So of course I stayed and followed him around like a lost puppy dog. He hugged me and said he loved me! I burst into tears and couldn't stop. He put his arms around me walking around and he let me play with his curls in his hair that I hand't seen in so long. It was like my little boy was back. Then his dad showed up and I wanted to hug him goodbye and he abruptly walked away from showing his dad he wouldn't have anything to do with me. So becuase of all that, I know his dad did something to him horrible or is holding something over his head. Deep down because of that one day I know my son still loves me and wants to be with me, but won't because of his father is holding something against him.

This is why it is so painful and hard for me to give up and let him go. Because I know he cares, but can't probably for fear he will lose his father. So what do I do? I email my son daily even if it just says I love you everyday in the subject line, in case he doesn't open it. And he never responds. I don't understand. And it is literally killing me. I feel like I am totally helpless with nobody to help me. My ex is a monster and has hurt my son deeply and all I want to do is go get him and bring him home. But he is an adult now and he is 6'5" and 220lbs. His dad is bigger. I don't think I would have a chance of being able to make him get in the car and suddenly un-brainwash him. But I know he needs psycological help desperately and don't know how to get it for him or help him at all. It is killing me and I cry about him everyday. Any more advice?

Sorry for the long reply, I am venting in anger and frustration.


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These are very sad stories from some very sad moms. I myself noticed the lack of men on this thread. I wonder if it's because they don't give birth? They never feel the baby living under their ribs nearly on top of their soul?
I hear men say,"He/she is an adult off to go live their own lives". I hear women say,"They'll always be my child".
The fact is my children are not mine. They are a gift,sometimes a painful one,from God. They WILL leave me and go on with their lives.
I hope that they don't feel the need to estrange me like I have my family. If they do, I hope they are doing it for the very best reasons.

I was estranged from my mom for 2 yrs after trying to care take her for off and on for 10yrs,steadily for 5 of those long,hard years. She lived her life not care taking anyone and never even learned how to care take herself.
I now keep in contact with my mom by phone about once a month,from 4 states away. Thank God.

Why did I chose to separate myself from my mother?
My mom is a product of the 60's. Being a stay at home was quite unfashionable at that time. So my mom worked,traveled and socialized as much as possible. Unfortunately, without my mother's protection I was vulnerable to predation. Crazy babysitters,predatory male family members,roving males in the neighborhood(we ran unsupervised everywhere while she was otherwise occupied),and you can imagine what the house looked like for someone who believed being domestic was equal to stupidity. My mother paid the bills and left us to raise ourselves so I owed her nothing.
My much older sister stepped in for awhile and made up for my mother's absences. Eleven to Sixteen year old girls frequently make poor mothers. My sister resents me and my mother to this day for having to partially raise a child that wasn't even hers. She moved 1800 miles away and has had a relationship with my mom but when I was around I could see,hear and feel the resentment in everything about my sister. She is hateful and angry to this very day. My mom is always angry at her for not doing enough so I don't see why my sister even bothers. I can't imagine asking more than giving up a childhood to be the parent that she was not.
That's my mother in a nutshell. She takes and takes and takes and only throws in a compliment or two if her daughters are taking up her slack,doing for her what she can do for herself and never did for us. The boys are treated as too stupid to help (this is also what she gleaned from feminism) and are insulted and treated like they are stupid. They don't visit much either even if they are out of jail at that point.
This story can go both ways. If I gave and gave to my sons and they always treated me like I was only good when they wanted something I'd estrange from them too. IMHO "Blood" is not the last word! If a person,any person, causes nothing but tears,heartache,resentment and hate why expose myself to that toxic environment?

My family of origin is toxic. My ex-husband and his family are toxic. I am now married to a kind,loving man with a regular family. I have life long friends (one I practically lived at their house growing up) that are great and proud that I didn't allow my toxic family to totally ruin my life. I am a part of communities that outreach and help others instead of just thinking of themselves. There is no changing others. There is only focusing on the good people around to enhance and add joy to my life.
You may be wondering,"What about the father?"
Well, at least dear old mom was worth mentioning and calling once a month. Remember the part about the male predatory family members? Mom knew BTW. PJ


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

anniebal,

It sounds like your sons are a lot older than mine. I am sorry to hear this is happening in your life as well. Our situations are different but we all hurt for the same reason. I am sorry to everyone for that. I don't understand life most of the time. I never did this to my parents and my ex has a great relationship with his parents so this is just too weird. My son is still young and not married and does not have the influence of a wife (however maybe in his case it would do some good). So I think it is his fater and his hate for me divorcing him. That's all I can think it to be. But how could someone who cherishes his own relationship with his parents, ruin his sons relationship with his mother? I guess we will never understand life in the real sense. And trying to understand is driving me crazy as well as not seeing my son knowing very well he does love me. So again, I ask anyone out there, how do I give up? How do I move on? I don't think it is possible.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Jan, first I don't think you have to give up...you probably just need to stop trying. By contacting your son on a daily basis with an email reminding him that you love him, he could be feeling a bit too powerful. It sounds ridiculous but some people thrive on the power and control issues, like the old saying states "give an inch and they take a mile."

I finally stopped trying with my son in the sense that I don't call or email. When I was forced to see him at a graduation ceremony for my younger child I did greet him with a kiss and hug. We did some very superficial talking (my dil was right at his side and wouldn't allow anything else I'm certain.) Still, even tho she brainwashed my son (in my opinion, just as your ex has brainwashed your son,) there comes a point where my son is responsible for his actions. That point has come and gone and still he continues this soap opera of his claiming how wrong we were. We've apologized, reached out, tried to get him/them to agree to move on and accept all of us for who we are, offered to pay for an independent therapist to help us all work through our issues with one another, but nothing. All I get is excuses about why it won't work or they can't do it though I know it is my dil who won't go along.

At least your son is young. I feel like you need to give him some space with no communication from you. Maybe he'll wonder if you're not going to try any longer with him and get curious enough to call or email you?

You aren't going to get over it, so quit trying. All we can learn to do is accept it and go on with our lives the best we can. We can always have the hope that things will change in the future, and with your son being only 19 I think you stand very good odds of that happening.

Try not to let it control you.

pjtexgirl, your story is so sad. I never understood why any movement would interfere with what one believes is moral in every area of their life. It seems that your mom should have given more consideration to what having children really means, but there are too many parents out there that want children as legacy only.

It's amazing you turned out normal growing up in the situation you were in. I don't blame you for your anger and at your distancing of yourself from your mother. The mere fact that she knew about the predator (your dad I assume) is unconscionable! I've heard about women who knew their husbands preyed on their children and looked the other way, but it is simply unimaginable to me. Most moms will protect their children's live before their own, so your mom's seeming ambilavence to the situation is awful.

It's amazing that your sister wants a relationship, but as you said she lives 4 states away so it's much easier that way.

It sounds like your family ended up being fairly dysfunctional (brothers in prison?) yet you pulled yourselves together for the most part and have gone one with your lives successfully. It's truly sad that a family has to end in such despair.

anniebal


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children//my story

This is my first time on this site and I must say that I am grateful for it. I have no answers but I do have pain from a very broken heart. I just found out why my son wants nothing to do with me. I also can agree with him on this. The problem is how do I make amends for the things that happened? A little background may help, so, I married young to their father, who after a couple of years got into alcohol and drugs. He then moved on to other women drugs and alcohol. I found my son in the front yard one day after work in the playpen, he was 1 1/2 years old, he was suffering from sun stroke. I immediately took him to the hospital where I worked. Then the father just runs off to another state and never sends money or contacts me. OK, so after a couple of years of this behavior I find myself caught up with another man who treated me great at first, after my divorce from their father I moved away with this man. It was a big mistake, it wasn't long before he started to physically abuse me. This is where I become very guilty...I lost myself as a person because of the abuse, in the process of that I ALLOWED my children to witness this abuse. Not that I could get away at the time. Believe me I tried so hard to get away. After a while the abuse was not to just me. If you have been the victim of DV you may know what I am saying... I was not able to protect my children from abuse. I tried but each time I tried I was then abuse even worse than before. So after finally get away from the abuser I tried to do my best which was just not good enough to give them a good life. Today things are not well between my son and myself. My daughter seems to have forgiven me but he is not close. I don't know how to make amends to my son. He is looking for me to make amends and I find after apologizing over and over that he does not want the "I am sorry" he wants more. I have a better life now. I have adopted a girl and he has threatened to tell her of his past. My adopted daughter is only 12 years old and she has nothing to do with this. How do I make amends to a son that is so bitter and angry????? I want my son back and I want to be a part of his childrens life.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

sanjean, have you considered going to a therapist so that you could both learn how to move on?


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

annibal, I have been to AL-ANON, counseling and still go, I have taken Foster Parent classes and Parenting classes, Domestic Violence classes and have been to Domestic Violence support groups. I have asked my son and my daughter to please go to a family counselor with me, but they have declined. They told me that they didn't need counseling. I know in my heart and soul that I have tried. My heart is broken. My son has told me in an email that he expects me to make amends, how do I do that? I have tried so hard and I am just drained. I appreciate you reply and am sorry if I come across as desperate. I suppose I am though. Thank you.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Sanjean wrote:

"I have asked my son and my daughter to please go to a family counselor with me, but they have declined. They told me that they didn't need counseling."

I heard the very same words from my husband when I first suggested counseling when it became apparent that he was treating our son in an abusive manner. When he was young, his parents had sent him to a counselor because of the abusive manner in which he treated his brother. My now ex-husband told me, with a great deal of pride, that he sat through 6 sessions and refused to open his mouth. Finally, the psychologist called his parents and told them he was cutting it off as it was a waste of his time and their money.

(I've often thought it would have been nice had his parents told me about this before we got married, but then again, I realize now that I never would have listened. As a matter of fact, my ex's neurologist pulled me aside one day and told me not to marry him, that he had too many problems [I had forgot about that until just within the past year] and I dismissed him, thinking "love" would change him. Needless to say, it did not and I am sorry for going off on this tangent.)

I know my SIL, before he became my SIL, had refused counseling for and with his son when the child was small and having emotional/behavioral issues; I heard, through a 3rd party, that my SIL refused to go to marital counseling when my now-estranged-from-me-but-still-married daughter was in emotional turmoil due to his behavior and treatment of her.

I had offered counseling or mediation for myself, my daughter and her husband to try to resolve our differences, but was turned down through resounding silence.

Refusal to go to counseling usually, to my mind, is a sign of great fear and guilt as well as an unspoken admission that the person refusing counseling knows that what he/she is doing is inherently wrong.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Thank you nobucklemyshoe, that makes a lot of sense. Fear and guilt seem to go hand in hand don't they. I am still feeling great pain and I know that it will not disappear overnight. Again thank you


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

As Yoda said:

"Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering."


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I have been to church today and I feel that the message was just for me. Amazing really. I have decided to take care of myself and seek more help. Thanks for listening.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I really want to thank the people who have taken the time to acknowlegde my feelings and the situation our family is in. Actually, my situation is getting a little bit worse. My adult son is calling my 13 year old daughter and pumping her for information on anything anyone is saying about him or his situation, asking if I am mad at him every time he sees her, and at first she would be surprised, but now she has actually gotten into the habit of feeding into his suspicions and fears. He is telling her that I am keeping him out of the loop, and he needs to know whenever I am unhappy with what he is calling to say to me, so she has been telling him bits and pieces of what she overhears me and my husband saying, or me telling people on the phone, and then blowing up at me even more whenever I end up seeing him. He is rude, and quiet, and weird when I see him, and I am beginning to think he is a little paranoid, and that he is worrying too much about what is going on here instead of what is going on with his own life. I have decided that a little distance is what would serve us all best. Nothing permanent or declared, just a conscious effort on my part to put a little distance between us all.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Sorry to say this charm1, but it does sound like drugs may be involved with your son's behaviour. In any case, you need to impress on your 13 year old that her feeding him snippets of "information", especially when they are taken out of context as she does, is only inflaming a poor situation. I'd be tmpted to get an unlisted number and make sure the 13 y o does NOT give it out to her brother.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

nobucklemyshoe, I have read that people who refuse counseling are extremely self righteous and as you stated afraid to to admit they have done anything, or need to do anything to make things better. It is all about them, they are injustice collectors and want us to keep bending over backwards though it never satisfies them anyway.

sanjean, it sounds like you sil is doing a number on your estranged daughter? Sounds like abuse and manipulation? Your daughter is certainly going to have to realize this and not be afraid to speak up or leave. We've all heard about these abusive relationships and they are very difficult to free oneself from, but it does happen. I feel my dil has npd and has brainwashed my son beyond belief. I don't know when or if he'll see the light.

charml, I would advise talking to your daughter about not feeding your son information. How much age difference is there between the two? Is your son married yet? I feel that your son is paranoid due to his own insecurities with his relationship with you. It doesn't matter if he is the one who brought this on, in his mind you are at fault and you should make it better. It's not rationale.

anniebal


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Just today I heard from a friend that her daughter, from whom she has been estranged for many, many years, (the daughter was the instigator of the estrangement) is getting a divorce and as a result of that divorce is seeing a therapist.

One of the first things the therapist told the daughter was that she needed to resolve her issues with her mother! Apparently, those unresolved issues were a big part of the reason for the divorce.

The daughter, thankfully, followed the advice of her therapist and has started a reconciliation with her mother.

There is hope.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Dear nobucklemyshoe,

Thank you for writing about about your friend and her daughter. I keep praying, every day and night that someday we will hear from our son again. I do believe it won't happen until he is divorced from his wife. She controls his every move and thought. Why that is, is a mystery to everyone who knows and loves him.

I have not been on this post for several months, it wasn't helping me very much, just hearing how many children have hurt their parents made me more depressed. Reading your post has given me hope. Thanks again.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

nobucklemyshoe, thanks for sharing that story about your friend. I'm sure that our kids poor relationships with us does have an impact on their marriages, or certainly can. It's sad to think that a marriage has to end in order for our child to have a relationship with us.

pamb100, I'm in the very same situation with my son where I believe he won't be allowed to have a relationship with us until he and my dil divorce. It is a mystery to everyone who knows and loves my son also as to the why.

I agree reading these posts and spending too much time here makes the stress worse at times.

anniebal


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

ALL, Thank you all so much for the postings. I have struggled this week, but I did think things over and send my son an email...In the email I said ("""Please feel free to call me a liar and a deceitful uncaring person, but until you get to know me again you will never see the changes I have made.
That is a choice you need to make. Remember you also have to live with the choices that you make in your life. Life has been and always will be painful to me, I just hope that yours won't be like mine. Regardless of what you think.. I do love you very much. I miss you and want to be a part of your life. This will be your decision. Let me know. I am trying, you can not take that away.
Love, Mom""""") I decided to take away his power in the only way I could. I need my life back without being oppressed by things I can not control. I haven't heard from him since and that is ok for now. I am really sad that I will not be able to see my three grandchildren because of this. I am so sad and broken and just hope that someday things will be better.
I also found out that his father is sick and in the hospital and that he has been talking to him about the past. Well, it seems that my son would rather believe the lies of his abusive father than the truth of his life after the abuse. That is just another choice he has to live with. SO Sad. Thanks, again all.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

sanjean, don't under estimate the power of the abusive father with your young son. Abusers are quite skilled at what they do, and it can take quite a long time for a person being abused to realize just what is and has been happening. I do believe that your son will see the truth, he just needs some time which I know is the most painful thing in.the world.

I like what your wrote your son, and your right to state to him that "I am trying, you cannot take that away." I feel that was a very good way of putting it, plus your message sounded sincere and loving.

anniebal


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Sanjean,
First, I'm very sorry for your pain. It's evident that you are hurting, and I truly am sorry that you are going through this with your son.

I had a different reaction to what you wrote, though. Anniebal liked "I am trying, you cannot take that away."
I didn't. I thought it sounded kind of snippy.

"Please feel free to call me a liar and a deceitful uncaring person, but until you get to know me again you will never see the changes I have made."

Do you really feel that he should call you a liar, etc? I think this is flinging mud.


"That is a choice you need to make. Remember you also have to live with the choices that you make in your life."

It seems he has already made his choice. I think he knows by now that he has to live by his decisions. This too, sounds like a lecture rather than a reconciliation.

"Life has been and always will be painful to me,"

Sounds like poor me...

"I just hope that yours won't be like mine. Regardless of what you think.. I do love you very much. I miss you and want to be a part of your life. This will be your decision. Let me know. I am trying, you can not take that away. Love, Mom"

The whole thing sounds judgemental to me rather than sincere and loving.

"I decided to take away his power in the only way I could."

What? Why are you trying to take his power away?

Also, there was no mention of your grandkids. That would have been the first thing I would have written about. That even if my child and I could not come to terms, that I would want to have a relationship with the grandkids.

I think what parents don't realize is how the kids see them growing up. I'm sure my mother doesn't realize what she did, and is confused and hurt too, and doesn't see why I can't just get over it, and doesn't see how I can believe my dad's side of the story. Well, sometimes his makes more sense. He made mistakes, while I was a child and she made mistakes, but only hers keep affecting me in my adult life.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

silversword,

You must have the wrong site, this is NOT the site to bash mothers who are hurting. You might want to start a new thread or try another site for that. This site is for empathy and caring for moms who are going through one of lifes most horrible misfortunes, (being ignored and disrespected by someone you loved and took the very best care of).

I for one would LOVE to hear more from our son on what he believes his father and I did "TO HIM" to make him think that he is just and right to hurt and disrespect not only us, but his two little sisters, (who idolized him) and his 78 year old grandmother. The only thing we ever heard from him, is that we did TOO much, took TOO good of care of him, now he wants see what it's like to be treated like his wife was by her parents. She was shuttled back and forth to crummy parents (who were married 7 times each)then taken by the courts from her father and given back to her mother, (who didn't want her in the first place). She is an ADULT in his eyes, she grew up fast and hard, he was held back by a loving mom and dad. She has bashed him, bashed us and calls him a mama's boy.

I believe now that he is a spoiled adult and I will never accept his lack of respect or his reason for it. She threw him out once, she will do it again. However, if and when he does contact us, he will need to get into therapy to found out why he was attracted to someone like her in the first place.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Silversword

Your comment demonstrated what a minefield it is for we parents when we try to communicate with our estranged kids. Given the circumstances, no matter what we write to them there will be a nuance, a connotation given to it that we had NEVER considered when we wrote it. If one side does not want to communicate than I wrestle with the idea of how much I should even try to communicate. If my son never responds to a birthday card or a picture or a small note, then I probably need to say no more because everything I do say will either dig me into some unknown hole or just perpetuate the notion that he can treat me however he wants and good old mom will still be there. I am trying to live with the idea now that I should only send birthday cards and Xmas cards with maybe a one line note and our signatures.

And from my experience NEVER mention that you want a relationship with the grandkids (Major Minefield topic) Imagine the connotations on writing that you would still like a relationship with your grandkids even if you can't have a relationship with your child. Immediately I can imagine the thoughts ....they never really loved me only that grandchild.

We had a very close relationship with our granddaughter. We helped our son get custody of his daughter. We did her daycare, etc. If our son honestly wants no relationship with us, why would he want it for his daughter?

It would be interesting if you posted a note that you had written to your mother to see what interpretations the "mothers" on this thread had to your note....It might be helpful to you since I cannot believe that you are not in pain over your estrangement because otherwise why would you even be here methodically pulling apart another mom's note?? You would be out doing your own thing and moving on completely.

I don't personally believe that in most(NOT all) cases estrangement is a mentally healthy solution. It is a short term bandaid to a solution and maybe gives a timeout but the problem is still there and at some point there will be some sort of reckoning.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

silversword,
If you would have read the first post you would have known that mention of Grandchildren was made from the start. Your reply just proves betsygirl is "very right"...it doesn't matter what we say, someone will choose to "take it wrong." Thanks for the perfect example!


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Silversword

From what I understand, you are estranged from your mother by choice just as my son is.

I am curious as to what kind of communications you would want from your mother and how you would want her to word it. I want to understand it from "the other side".

I just personally find writing the same old...I love you. I miss you. Our door is always open to you.....just gets me down and seems pointless in some respects. The main reason I keep doing it is so that my son will know that I always will keep on trying.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Straycat:

You wrote... "If you would have read the first post you would have known that mention of Grandchildren was made from the start. Your reply just proves betsygirl is "very right"...it doesn't matter what we say, someone will choose to "take it wrong." Thanks for the perfect example!"

I think I made it clear that I was not commenting on her first post, I was commenting on the email that she wrote to her son that said:

In the email I said ("""Please feel free to call me a liar and a deceitful uncaring person, but until you get to know me again you will never see the changes I have made.
That is a choice you need to make. Remember you also have to live with the choices that you make in your life. Life has been and always will be painful to me, I just hope that yours won't be like mine. Regardless of what you think.. I do love you very much. I miss you and want to be a part of your life. This will be your decision. Let me know. I am trying, you can not take that away.
Love, Mom""""")

This letter, the one I was referring to, made no mention of the grandkids. I think you are the one choosing to take it wrong. I was just commenting on the letter and how it seemed to me.

Is it not ok to give my perspective? Do parents not want perspective from children who are going through the same thing but on the opposite side, do they not want insight (whether accurate or not, it may solidify or justify the way a person is feeling or it may change the way they are feeling) or is this forum strictly for sympathy?


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RE: Taking things the wrong way...

Pam,
I hope you truly do not think I am bashing. You wrote:

"silversword, You must have the wrong site, this is NOT the site to bash mothers who are hurting. You might want to start a new thread or try another site for that. This site is for empathy and caring for moms who are going through one of lifes most horrible misfortunes..."

I thought this thread was RE: MOTHERS ESTRANGED FROM ADULT CHILDREN. I am an adult child estranged from my mother. This site is not "for empathy and caring for moms who are going through one of lifes most horrible misfortunes..."
This site is a public forum. And, specifically, the thread does not refer to RE: EMPATHIZING AND CARING FOR MOMS...

Nontheless, even though I think the email was not very kind, I prefaced my post "First, I'm very sorry for your pain. It's evident that you are hurting, and I truly am sorry that you are going through this with your son. I had a different reaction to what you wrote, though." This is because I really am sorry for this mother's pain, but I thought she might like to know how a child may take those words.

I thought this was an open forum. Is dissent not ok here? Do we all have to agree? If I had received her email I would have taken it completely different that the way (I'm sure) she intended it. Sometimes we don't know how our words will sound to other people. This is a good example of that. I didn't know my words would come across as "mother bashing". I'm just giving my opinion, same as everyone else.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Hi Betsy,

You wrote... "And from my experience NEVER mention that you want a relationship with the grandkids."

Maybe you're right, and I'm wrong there. I don't have grandchildren, so I'm completely ignorant on that side. As a parent though, even if I don't want a relationship with my family, as long as they are not being abusive to my daughter I will allow her to have her own relationships because that is her right as a person. Someday she will realize who my mother is, or she won't. Regardless, it's not up to me to stop my daughter from knowing her grandmother. I have been wavering on phone calls because the sound of my mother's voice really sets me on edge. So, for now they're communicating by mail, but they are communicating. And every gift my mother sends to my daughter is promptly responded to with a thank you letter from my daughter. That's just common courtesy, and my mother raised me to acknowledge gifts quickly, so that the person sending the gift would know it arrived.

You asked me to post a note I wrote to my mother. I actually haven't sent her any notes. I've barely spoken to her since I kicked her out. She blamed the entire thing on me, called my father and ex-husband and told them lies about me and my DH and then calls and acts like nothing happened. This was six months ago. I don't see how any good will come from a note, so I haven't written one.

And, as you said, I am not over it. You're right. I have not moved past it. I am still hurting. I still feel abandoned, even though I am the one who asked her to leave. Once again, if I do not do exactly as she wants me to do, I am not an ok person. She, of course, always comes out smelling like the proverbial rose.

I took apart the note line by line because it really struck me hard and I wanted it to be clear what I was commenting on. The tone of the email sounded off to me, and I thought the mother who wrote it may want to hear from the other side how it might be taken. You're right, it is a minefield. Relationships are very tricky. Friendships are tricky. One never knows how someone else might take their words.

You asked what kind of communications I would want from my mother. For me, it's not a matter of "let's put this behind us and move forward". I have done that with my mother. I forgave her when I was 18, and we had a pretty good relationship for quite a few years. Then I realized she's doing the same thing again. She's manipulative, conniving, selfish, petty, and mean. She thought that me forgiving her meant she had a clean slate, and the past never happened. And then she was free to do it all over again. She latched onto my friends, my family, and began to form relationships with people to the detriment of my relationships. Because she was always there, with me, people would think we shared opinions. Then, when she pissed people off, she'd bad-talk them to me and make it nearly impossible for me to have a relationship with them. This, over politics (something I do my best not to judge people for, especially older relatives who have a completely different perspective on life than I do, but whom I love dearly), over religion, over lifestyle.

If I didn't like the same thing as her, she'd try to convince me that her way was the only way. I was never allowed to be an adult and have my own opinions. When I said my daughter would not be going back to dance class at the end of the term because she is not paying attention to the teacher and it's merely social to her, that I would find another class that she is actually interested in, my mother argued with me "but she's only six". I told her that she had taken me out of dance at four because I didn't pay attention. She said that now she knows that the age for paying attention is seven, blah blah blah. So I told her, that's not fair. You got to make the decisions when I was a child, and now you think you get to make the decisions for my child. It's my turn to make the decisions. And she got mad. Well, guess what. My daughter is now in martial arts, paying attention and really advancing. She just didn't like dance class. AND the kicker is that when I enrolled her in dance, my mother was going to take her. Then she said, well, every other week. Then it was just me taking her. But she still wanted me to enroll her again!?!

My mother never let me seperate, even as she was pushing me away my entire life she was mentally and emotionally tangling me in her web.

I wish I had an answer to your question of what kind of communication I would want. Since she blames me for everything and seems to think that I'm the one who is pushing estrangement I don't really know. I told her, this situation is not working, we need to think of something else. You can stay until you get an apartment, etc. She is the one who packed up everything that night, didn't/wouldn't tell me where she was going, screamed so the neighbors could hear, drove away, then came back to yell at me some more. She is the one who bad-mouthed me to my family, saying I kicked her out on the street. I told everyone who asked that she went to take care of an ill family member. I didn't tell them awful things about her. A lot of the time I feel as if I am the adult and she is the child.

And yet, this is my fault. I acknowledge that I let her push me further than I should have. I should have stood up for myself a long time ago. But it took me this long to realize what she was doing, the power trip she was playing. I still love my mother. But I don't want anything to do with her. She truly is toxic to me.

If you ask anyone, they think she's fabulous. They want her to be their mother. An old neighbor, upon finding out she had left, asked me, but won't you be sad your mom doesn't live with you anymore... and I said, no, I would like to live without her, do you want to live with your mom... and the old neighbor said, no, I could never live with my mom, but your mom is cool. Yeah... that just puts it in a nutshell. Cool, as long as she's not your mom, right?


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Wow....like so many of you have expressed, I had no idea that this problem is like a pandemic.

My problem with my adult daughter began when she started seeing a therapist. I'm not sure if it was the therapy process itself or if the therapist embraces the blame-the-parents dogma--all I know is that my relationship with my daughter has dramatically changed.

Like most parents, I loved, protected, supported, respected, etc. my daughter. Her teenage years were a bit rough but I thought that was behind us. Now, at age 30, it is as if she were experiencing adolescence all over again.

Up until recently, I enjoyed merely resting my eyes on my daughter's face. Now the mere thought of her floods my my body with dread and sadness. Nevertheless, she is still talking to me, sort of. She is willing to see me a couple of times per year (not at Christmas, though). So, compared to many of your situations, I guess I should be grateful. Still, I wake up virtually every morning at 2 am with my mind spinning to the unanswerable question i.e., "How on Earth did this happen?" (And yes, I have read a number of books on estrangement in the past year).

Thanks for listening; my heart goes out to all of you,

gailyn


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

silversword,
I feel that I overreacted and I am sorry that I wrote so harshly to you. I do believe this is a site for all people. Whatever side your on. We are all hurting, or we wouldn't be here.

I never would have believed I would be reading posts about children shunning their parents and I imagine all of you feel the same way.

After years of trust, co-signing loans, tuition payments, ... and so much more that comes with parenthood, my DH and I just shake our heads and can't believe this has happened.
I don't know why our son has decided that he needs to live without a family. I think that's what drives me so crazy. Why after almost 30 years, we aren't allowed to call him, send him cards, visit him... It makes no sense. I don't know if he's drinking, if it's her ultimatums. Something has completely changed his personality.

We as a family have just gone on. We have two daughters to raise, jobs, bills, just like anyone else. It just hurts to have raised someone, loved them with all your heart and then to have been asked to have no contact with them forever, with no explanation.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Silversword

Thank you for your honesty in sharing your pain. There are as many difficult parents out there as there are difficult kids. It sounds like you are stuck between a rock and a hard place...you don't want your mom in your life because she is so toxic but yet you feel abandoned by your mom because it sounds like she is not really listening to you....

I admire that you are encouraging your daughter to stay in touch with her grandmother. It ia a mark of maturity that you are not using her as some sort of weapon to hurt your mother unlike many of the estranged children of moms on this forum.

I am still grappling with the concept of the wall. I read in one book that you have to hit the "wall" as part of the letting go process. The wall is something you cannot climb over, under, etc. I have to accept that no matter what I have done since our son suddenly cut us off...has made no difference whatsoever. I have saved copies of some of the emails and notes I have written so that whenever I start thinking "maybe if I did such & such", I can read what I have done already. My mother, husband, daughter, friends...all say that I have done all that I can and I need to let it go but I am having trouble doing that.....I keep banging against that wall...

I can understand the comment about loving your mother but not wanting her near you right now. I will always love my son but I don't like who my son has become in the last year or so. He is young and has had some bad breaks but none of this justifies his treatment of us and of other members of his extended family. At the moment I don't know how he could ever fit back in the family again or how anyone would feel comfortable around him or his wife again. But then again who knows what the future brings....

Hope your daughter continues to enjoy martial arts! My daughter was never one for dancing classes.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Dear Pamb,
Thank you for your reply. I wish I had a magic wand that I could wave over your son. I wish I could tell you the secret of estranged kids! But all I know is from my own experience what happened to me personally and how I dealt with it.

I'm sorry for the parents who truly have no idea what they could have done/what happened to their relationships with their children. I know that happens, and it must be an awful feeling.

As you wrote..."It just hurts to have raised someone, loved them with all your heart and then to have been asked to have no contact with them forever, with no explanation. "

Again, I can't imagine. I believe you and other parents when you say there was no explaination and you don't know what happened. But, in my small personal experience, my mother says she "doesn't know" what she did either. And she fully does know. This is her pattern. When I look back it's the exact same thing she did with numerous other people in her life. So that's why I'm asking parents to please check, and see if you can think of anything that you missed, because your child may think you know what happened and are ignoring it.

I explained to my mother why I needed her to move out of my home. I had tried to talk to her regarding it for some time but she always tuned me out. She still goes around telling people she has no idea why I "kicked her out on the street". OMG. I just want to scream that she's a liar. Instead, I have nothing to do with her, except superficially, and for my daughter. I don't stand up for myself to our family and tell "my side" of the story, I don't bad mouth her. I simply give my little "sick person in the family, she had to leave and care for them" statement that again, makes her look good. But I cannot have that toxic behavior near me one more instant.

I love my mother. I truly do. I am in pain just about every day when I allow myself to think of her. When my daughter speaks of her joyfully it hurts. I hurt. But it hurts more when I am in contact with her. I don't know what to do. Talking with her doesn't work, it's in one ear and out the other.

Do you have any suggestions for talking with a parent of an adult child, as you are one?


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RE: Banging my head in circles...

Hi Betsy, thank you for responding to my post...When you wrote:

"My mother, husband, daughter, friends...all say that I have done all that I can and I need to let it go but I am having trouble doing that.....I keep banging against that wall..."

I can relate to that. My DH was so fed up with my mother that he is worn to the nub hearing about her, discussing her, etc. It was very difficult for him to live with her when she wanted to be the one in charge. Example, he wanted his own chair at the dining room table. Reason? He likes to know where he is sitting and he likes his chair to be clean. My DD has her own chair, it's higher than the rest because she is short. I don't care which chair I sit in, but I can understand wanting one's own chair, so I didn't care. My mom threw a fit saying her dad never had his own chair, etc. etc. Y'know what? Who the blimey cares who did and didn't have their own chair? It's something he requests, it's no skin off your teeth, it's his house, let him have his own freaking chair. But she kept on him about it. And then we heard her on the telephone discussing it with people. Literally, people across the nation heard our day to day business. We asked her not to tell people our everyday lives (events, like awards, new jobs, achievements etc. were ok). But everyday we'd hear a piece of our lives broadcasted across the nation. I went to hospital unexpectedly and was very ill, and when I got back I overheard her telling someone that I had my period while I was there, etc etc. EXCUSE ME? When I told her I didn't appreciate it, she said, "well it's only so and so I told." Who cares? I care! It's my personal business. I didn't even tell my best friend that choice piece of gossip. Jeez!

I tried and tried and tried to tell her what we needed in order to be comfortable in our own house, and she disrespected every single one.

I try to keep it to my self and not involve other people in my life so they don't judge her. She is really a good person. But she has serious boundary issues. I told her not to go to work for DH's family business. What did she do? Went to work there. And then caused issues. Because she seemed to think she was something special. She didn't fit in to the corporate culture there, made waves, got bitter, wanted to complain to me all the time. I told her, mom, that's why you don't work with family. I told you not to work there. That's why I don't work there. I still want to like his family and enjoy spending time with them. But she got on her high horse, and then it was uncomfortable to spend holidays with them. Once again, thank you mom.

I keep thinking there's something more I could have done. I went through the stage of rethinking her whole life, what could have caused this, feeling for her pains and tribulations, feeling sorry, feeling defensive for her. But I have gotten past that now. I see her as a person. I know her life was hard. My childhood was hard as a result of her life being hard. Now I'm an adult. I have my own life. And she is stepping on my toes and not saying sorry. Again and again. Which brings up my childhood again, which brings me in the circle of "but she had a hard life and did the best she could" again, which brings up the fact that my toes are still hurting and it's not ok anymore, again. So wait. I haven't gotten past that. I'm still going in circles, with a big bruise on my forehead, and the wall isn't dented at all!!!!

Relationships can be so hard!


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RE: It's a Forum

Straycat
"KNOW it's got to be next to impossible to understand this blog if you've never been in this situationFor once, lack of experience doesn't make you any more knowledgeable about the subject material. Two- You are no "better mother's" than we were/are-believe it or not. Three-We don't "value" you're opinion; because you haven't been there-so you DON'T know what you are talking about. Three-We are TRYING to heal and you are NOT helping. Four-Please, if you cannot support our "mission" find a mission you can support

1. Its a forum, not a blog.
2. The "Mission" of GardenWeb is to provide a forum, not to support.
3. You dont speak for everyone.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Well....
If it isn't the pot calling the kettle black-HAHAHAHAHA!
You don't even believe yourself!


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Oh and silversword-why don't you start a poor children who are estranged "FORUM"? Since you are so very perfect and knowledgeable...then you won't have to correct the rest of us? HUH? AND THE name if this "FORUM" IS: MOTHERS estranged from adult children...in case you didn't start from the top of the page.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Just to clear this up, since I already know what it's like on my side of the fence, I'm trying to figure out what's going on on the other side.

Straycat, I was quoting you. I don't see why you are being so mean. I'm really sorry your child doesn't want to have a relationship with you, that must be very difficult, but that is no excuse to take it out on other people.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

"AND THE name if this "FORUM" IS: MOTHERS estranged from adult children...in case you didn't start from the top of the page."

Actually, the name of this FORUM is the Parents Forum....
as per you "in case you didn't start from the top of the page."

There is a separate forum for Estrangements, but somehow everyone who is estranged would rather post on a parenting board....


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

The LINK is "Mothers estranged from adult children. LINK -ok! There are several and they are all dealing with that issue.IF you want to
"Bang your head in circles-or "Its a Forum start one!


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Let's stop...this isn't good for anyone. It doesn't matter what anything is called. I don't mean to sound like I am being mean. I'm really far from it-in fact.
As on the other posts...silver I am sorry.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

To change the subject..............we are moving towards the holiday season. I am not looking forward to it at all. Tonight it is Halloween and instead of seeing my granddaughter dressed up and excited and being sent multiple pictures of her in her finery, we know nothing. We don't have a clue what she is going to dress up as after being so involved with her. It hurts...

At times like these I can honestly say that I hate my son and his wife. I am truly ashamed of who he has become and the choices he has made. If he walked in the door tomorrow, I don't know how I would react. I have no idea if I will ever trust him again.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Betsy, Believe me..I think your feelings are the norm. My daughter with the 'encouragement' of her husband, withheld our grandkids for 2 of the 3 yrs of estrangement. Last year, they were withheld again for 3-4 months. Now she and the grandkids come around but her husband doesn't. (which is fine by us at this point) I can relate to your feelings. It tore our hearts out when we didn't get to see the kids. When that was going on, I felt the same way. I use to wonder what I'd do if she came to my door...would I welcome her with open arms and forgive? Or would I tell her what I thought of all the hurt that was caused and slam the door in her face? In the end, I welcomed her back but I was slow with the relationship. It did not pick back up where it left off. And to this day, I still don't trust her. It's not the same relationship, I don't feel the same towards her, I don't let my guard down. I do love her and care for her..and am so glad she does come around and let the grands come. But I am always waiting for the other shoe to drop. One of the reasons for that is because I know sil is still pushing her to not let us see the grandkids because he is mad. It's all about him and his feelings, not the grandkids. He's not above using his own kids. (How sad is that?) It's just not the same..something is missing. I think the trust for one thing. I NEVER thought my daughter would do the things that she did and allowed. She was a good child/teen. A joy. She still is a good person but I think she's been manipulated so much.
I'd like to add, I think the feeling that you'd like to tell her/him off, slam the door, etc..is caused by the hurt, the grief...you want to get it out. 'How could you hurt us so much?'
Hang in there.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Sniffles wrote: "One of the reasons for that is because I know sil is still pushing her to not let us see the grandkids because he is mad. It's all about him and his feelings, not the grandkids. He's not above using his own kids. (How sad is that?)"

As you know, this is the position I, too, am in, although my daughter has yet to find the backbone to stand up to her husband. She can't see past her own insecurity to realize what damage she is allowing to be done to her children when they are used as weapons.

She, apparently, also cannot see, as I wrote last night in another thread, that someday her husband will do something similar to her. (Actually, I believe he already has by threatening that he will get the children if she should divorce him [and she does have grounds for a divorce, she just is not strong enough to go through with it].)


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Nobucklemyshoe, I feel my daughter is the same way. She once told me if her and her hubby divorced that it would be 'fight to the death' over who got the kids. He's older and stronger than her and I feel she is scared of him in ways. I am a big believer in what goes around, comes around. I already sense that one of the grandkids will estrange himself from them as soon as he's of age. He's full of resentment towards them. (and he remembers not being allowed to see us, brings it up occasionally) For my daughter's sake, I hate to see him do that to her..remember! I know how much that hurts. But I can see it coming...


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Sniffles,

I found your post about when your daughter came back very interesting.

I have often fantasized about what I would do if my daughter suddenly, unexpectedly showed up at my door.

To be honest, in spite of how much I hurt being estranged from her, I can't say that I would welcome her with open arms.

Among many other things, the pain and humiliation of her intentionally not inviting me to her wedding is just too great for me. Although I can forgive, I don't think I could ever truly "forget." (It doesn't help that the rest of the family received an invitation and attended without me. My own father even called me afterwards and told me how nice everything was. Just imagine, if you can, how that felt.)

Anyway, I am ashamed of feeling this way towards my daughter. I know it is not constructive thinking. But at the same time, I can't help it.

These emotions are impossible to deal with at times. Wanting her in your life, but never fully trusting the relationship. Knowing that at any minute she might take my grandkids away again. I just don't think I could go through that initial pain of separation again and again.

Sometimes, I believe it is best to keep toxic situations out of our life. It still hurts. It will always hurt. But sometimes we have to do what is best for us in the long run.

Who is to say what I would actually do, should my daughter ever return. Right now, I don't ever see that happening. But one thing is for sure, I must vent my emotions. If I don't, they will eat me alive and totally consume me. I find solace in writing my feelings down. It really helps me to put it on paper. Not to mention the comfort of coming to this board and talking with others who are going through the same thing.

Anyway, I just wanted to respond to your post, Sniffles and tell you that I understand exactly where you are coming from regarding your daughter's return.

Best of luck to you,
kmttsmom


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

WOW!! I am really sorry that my letter to my son started such a hoorible line here. That was not my intent at all. I have been and always will be honest and if my feelings in that letter were too real I am hurt and I make no excuse for that. Until a person has felt this pain from this side there is no way they can understand. Remember toothat each case is unique. From sanjean


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

sanjean-
You are right on. I would have never believed this scenario if I had not experienced it myself. It is truly one of the most horrible things I have ever experienced, the death of one of my daughters being the #1 in my life.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I am so happy to have found this site. I am going on 2 years of no contact with my oldest son. I missed the 2 most special days in his life the day he wed and the day his baby (my first grandchild) was born. For over a year I blamed myself, went over every memory, word, and interaction that I could to try and reconstruct just what I did that would cause my son to choose to be dead to me than to try and find a solution. I went to one counselor that felt sorry for me and encouraged me to move on (no such luck). Then last May I found a counselor that let me tell my story from what I knew and when I stopped he looked at me and said "IT'S NOT YOUR FAULT" and assured me I was a good mom. I had heard this from family and friends that were as shocked as I was that my son could shut me out of his life - but it took someone that didn't love me to help me see the truth. Hearing him say this opened the flood gates and I immediately felt weight being lifted off my shoulders. I'll tell my story later but for now I wanted to talk about healing.
It doesn't happen over night and at times I think I will never heal completely but I am learning to live a "new normal." About once a month (I think hormones are to blame) I allow myself the pleasure of grieving my son with full fledged tears. I give myself permission to "feel" something for my son and for now the only thing that makes me still feel connected to him is the pain. The difference now is that I don't stay there I get up the next day and I make an effort to be happy. Like the saying that says if you pretend to be happy long enough you might start believing it. I don't put myself out there to be continuously beaten down with attempts at contact. I understand that right now he needs to learn from his own mistakes. If losing his family to make his wife happy is what he believes he has to do then that is his choice.
Nothing could have prepared me for this loss but I will survive if not one day at a time then one moment at a time. Right now is a good moment and I just wanted to share that with those of you who can't see past the pain and loss.

My heart is broken but as long as we both live there is always hope that things will change and he will be in my life again.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Lost1,
"If losing his family to make his wife happy is what he believes he has to do then that is his choice."

It's sad, because she could divorce him at any time. No one who really loves a person would make them choose between them and their family unless something really bad was going on. It sounds like your DIL is a jealous, selfish young woman who does not understand that if you seperate someone from their loved ones it will not end up well for you or get you more love.

I think you've got a really good attitude despite your pain. You know that he will have to make his own choices, and you're allowing him his freedom. In the end, I'm sure that will show him how much you love him rather than be perceived as his wife sees you.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Hi,
I just found this site tonight, and I'm so happy to read that other people have problems that maybe I can learn from them.

My daughter, first-born, was the love of my life. Growing up we had so much fun, could talk about anything. I encouraged her to travel, go away for college, become whatever she wished to be. Then my mother, to whom I was intensely close to, died suddenly, and a few days later, my daughter informed me she was moving to CA - 3000 miles away to attend Grad School. She left 4 months later, and now informs people she's not coming back home. She loves it out there, has a wonderful job, and is content to see us 2 times a year. So I have done nothing for the last three years but grieve for my mother's loss and my own loss - my daughter's company. I am seeing a psychologist weekly to come to grips with my situation. While I have my mother's situation under control with acceptance, I feel so angry with my daughter for leaving just when I needed her the most. I am on anti-depressant meds, but they just mask the feelings for awhile, and don't "cure" them. My daughter is 25, and it's all about her. What she wants, where she wants to live, etc.etc. I never grew up like that. I was always the homebody taking my kids to see their grandparents 2-3 times a week. I always needed my mother into adulthood with her advice or just to listen. I lived far enough away that I had my own life, but close enough to visit often. I am finding I really resent my daughter, and I feel very calm when she doesn't call to exclaim how wonderful her life is going, when mine is a wreck....I know our job as parents is the ability to have them become independent people, but I didn't know how much it hurt to let them do that. I wish I still had my mom here. She would have such good advice for me, I know, about letting go. But for now, I emotionally, do so much better when I don't speak to my daughter. Is this crazy?


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Codyk "But for now, I emotionally, do so much better when I don't speak to my daughter. Is this crazy?"

Nope, not in my experience. I do better when I don't speak with my mother either. totally different circumstances, but the same in emotion.

Your daughter is stretching her wings. Let her go. It was very unfortunate that it happened the same time as a death. Losing a daughter to adulthood is a mini-death. Your daughter doesn't have the life experience to know that she is really hurting you. Resentment is natural. I resent my mother as well. Is it valid? Perhaps not. But it's how I feel!

Feelings aren't wrong. That you are doing something about it is good for your future well being.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Thank you Silversword for your kind words. I just turned 53, and I've decided my fifties stink. I can count on one hand the happy times I've had. I'm so trying to come to terms with my daughter leaving, but did she have to move so far away?? I'm the type of person who needs people around for relationships. I feel I can't have a deep relationship with someone on the phone. Sounds crazy, I know. Maybe by the time I'm 60, I will have accepted her choices...


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

It isn't crazy cody, but you aren't estranged from your daughter. You still see her twice a year and you phone all the time. That is not estrangement. But if you don't want to hear from her and how well she is doing it might just turn into that. Trying to control her by denying her the freedom to share her joy with you may well backfire on you.

Find some good friends in your own age group. Children are not intended to be best friends with their parents.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Well gee Colleen777, maybe you'd be content to spend twice a year with your daughter, but I'm not. And no, I don't consider her my "best friend". I do have a wide circle of friends my own age, whom I see often. I work and have a good social life. What I am reeling from is the unexpected death of my mother, and then my daughter moving 3000 miles away. A double whammy. So I'm doing what I can to get better - seeing a therapist, on meds for depression, but sometimes it just gets the better of me, and I'm overly sad.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Verb
S: (v) estrange (remove from customary environment or associations) "years of boarding school estranged the child from her home"

S: (v) estrange, alienate, alien, disaffect (arouse hostility or indifference in where there had formerly been love, affection, or friendliness) "She alienated her friends when she became fanatically religious"

Adjective
S: (adj) alienated, estranged (caused to be unloved)


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Estrangement

So which is this one there silver:)?


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Colleen, she's sad because her daughter isn't in the same environment she's used to. I'd call this estranged under the "removed from customary environment or associations" definition. It may not be that her daughter cut off all interaction, and you very well may be right in that if she continues on this path that will be where she ends up. But I think she's being very honest with her feelings and how she got in this position. She's had a death in the family, she's vulnerable and perhaps more needy that she would be in a "normal" situation of her daughter leaving home. I think any parent would be sad and feel alone in this situation.

What do you suggest the problem is, other than she has no friends and is attached to her daughter in an unhealthy way?


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

colleen777,
Oh, don't you worry. silver will tell you just the way it is-SHE knows EVERYTHING! Hasn't ever "been there-done that!" BUT she knows it all-! Why, you can go back and read all of the posts and there she is knowing all and letting us all know just the way it is. In fact she is EVERYWHERE the posts are full of her. I just don't know how she does it! Surely she cooks, cleans, has quality time for her children and husband and STILL has all this time to write these well thought out replies..--plus she is so smart, where would be all be without silver?.SHE must be "Superwoman" That's silver-a kind word for everyone-full of empathy for others-always letting us know what she thinks-the all knowing judge of us all------------
here's........... silver hihosilver won't go away! Don't you just love that woman? Doesn't she just make you feel all warm inside? Aren't we just so lucky?


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Straycat I too have been reading all these posts and I found myself feeling attacked everytime I read her posts. I for one appreciate that you let her know that the way she was responding was hurtful and possibly running people off because I was about to be one of them. But all of the sudden it seems she is trying to be supportive, and maybe it has some to do with she heard you. I have posted on several of these boards trying to connect with someone imagine my surprise when the first to respond was silversword and what she said was very supportive to me. You definately have a lot to say and I appreciate that you are keeping this dialog going but for now at least it looks like you made your point and the last post was really not necessary.

Silversword thanks for your reply to my post. I actually saw you were the one to respond and was scared to read it. I am so sensitive to being attacked and unless you have actually been there as straycat says I don't know how you or anyone else could understand that. I don't talk about my situation to others much because I am afraid they will judge me as harshly as I had judged myself in the past. I came here hoping I could vent, look for help, lend support and when possible give hope. Thanks for being kind and supportive in your answer to me. Since that posts I have been reading your latest posts and have had to do double takes to see who is posting when you have seemed to be continuing in that way. That is why I am responding now. I do think you are making an effort to be more supportive and yet you have really attacked straycat in previous posts when she was only trying to tell you to take it easy on those of us here. I for one have felt like a beaten dog and your previous comments felt like being kicked while on the ground. I appreciate straycat standing up for us cause I have sure not felt defended since my son left but I also recognize that you are trying now and it really is appreciated as well.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Questions for Silver

How far away do you live from your mother?
How many times a year do you see her?
How many times do you call her?
What kind of conversations do you have...joy in your life, or accusations?

Being separated by distance is not even remotely the same as estrangement.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

well, lost1of3, you are certainly justified in expressing your opinion. Personally, you name tells me you are one of the lucky ones. I had a daughter who died , and three who are estranged. So my Christmas won't be quite as Merry.
Take care and hope you have a nice Thanksgiving.
-stray-


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RE: kmttsmom / If kids came back...

Dear kmttsmom:

Reading your response to Sniffles certainly hit home with me! I don't know how many times I have told my husband that as the years go by that I don't see or hear from my children, in order to spare my heart the pain, I invariably build a wall of scar-tissue around it... And, it grows higher and thicker day by day, minute by minute...

I guarantee that if they did come back, our relationship would not be the same. It reminds me of how we toughen after the loss of a first love you never allow your heart to feel "that kind of agony" again. It is too unbearable, so you prepare yourself emotionally by cutting off- for your own sanity. I'm sure a psychologist would call this being "healthy." I call it a great loss- and why we are all here writing to each other.

As I have written, I felt the loss so deeply- I did try to take my life. I have spent time in a "psych ward." No one there could relate to me, and there was no "therapy" they could give me, so they just collected from my health insurance for a week (all abt the $$) pretended they were real worried abt my emotional health, until my husband threatened legal action, and they finally released me. Do they really think they can "fix" our sadness / loss in a few days of being "locked up" somewhere?? Even the medical community is INSANE- not me! (But boy they love the labels!)

But, I digress. Bottom line is --one of you wrote that if "we" don't "fix" the relationships WE have with "our OWN" parents in front of "OUR children", then it is extremely likely that there will be estrangement for one or the other of the parents in generation to follow. Very insightful.

Sadly, I was advised of this waaay back when I was in therapy (pregnant with my 3rd out of 5 children!) when I was estranged from my own mother whom I hadn't spoken to since I was 13. She is mentally ill, tried to knife me, mace me, strangle me (you get the picture.) There could be NO reconciliation.

I, did a 180 turnaround, and could do nothing but love, hug, kiss and coddle my kids. Probably toooo much and they came to expect everything on a silver platter - never mind that their Dad was a millionaire- so they actually DID get things that way!

In the end, I now will wonder, indeed, if I will live long enuf to see them repeat the same history in their own lives with THEIR kids....

ms


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

ms500,
I love all my children no matter what. But I too have built a wall around my heart because I know now that they are capable of breaking mine and if I ever let them back into my life they would not hesitate to do the same again. In fact I talked to my daughter over a month ago on the phone for the first imte in over a year. The conversation on both ends was strained and not comfortable. Things will never be the same with any of my children. I have missed my oldest son's wedding (which was held in the town I live in) and my now only daughters graduation where she received her PhD because I was not invited. Too much has been lost for me to attempt this again. Plus as you said; my sanity is also at stake.
My mother was also abusive and I am sure has mental problems. She also has tried to kill me more than once and in many ways...you, I'm sure understand...physically and emotionally. I have one grandchild and I pray that my child doesn't ever have to go through what I have...but unfortunately that is often the case.
At least we can both look back and say we loved them with all of our heart and soul.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Lost1, I'm truly sorry if you've felt like I am attacking you. That is not my intention. I don't think people like my questions, or me! very much.

Actually Straycat and her verbal abuse has done nothing to change the way I post. I think if you look back at my history of posting I have been very supportive of people. I still have a hard time believing that it's all the fault of one person in an estrangment. If you look at Straycat's postings to me she has gotten very personal and made some very cruel remarks. My posts may have questions that she doesn't want to answer, but I am in no way forcing her to answer me. She can always ignore me. I'm not personally attacking her, or even attacking, anyone.

But it's useless sometimes to explain when people don't have a willingness to listen. Colleen has asked me questions and when I respond with a simple yes or no answer she tells me that at the end of the day she couldn't give an expletive what I think. And yet I continue to answer her as politely as I can.

Do you think what Colleen wrote to Codyk was supportive? I have never even seen Cody on this forum. What a welcome! When I come to the defense of someone, albeit just with a definition of the word estrange, Straycat jumps all over me. This is not a one way street. I can explain until I'm blue in the face and it won't change a thing.


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RE: Colleen

Answers for Colleen:

If you read any of my posts you could have gotten this information. I suspect you only want to make me wrong, but I'm answering you anyway.

How far away do you live from your mother? 800 miles

How many times a year do you see her? Not since she left 8 months ago.

How many times do you call her? Have not spoken to her since she left 8 months ago.

What kind of conversations do you have...joy in your life, or accusations? We don't talk.


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Thanks Silver

No, I wasn't trying to make you wrong Silver but I suspect you only want to make me wrong, again:)

I was only curious to know what you considered estrangement since you had expanded the definition to include being in a different location that still included plenty of contact based on the obvious restrictions of distance.

My daughters and I live almost 3000 miles away from each other which clearly is going to limit our face to face interaction. Am I estranged from them? Not in the least. We maintain plenty of contact, with visits as can be afforded, phone calls, photos, email, letters and via cam and messenger. We talk to each other almost daily.

Were you not trying to make me wrong and also reading into my post ulterior motive?:^)


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Colleen, the last time I answered one of your questions you said you couldn't give a "rats ___" what I thought about anything. It makes me hesitant to answer your questions.

I did not expand any definition of estrangment, it is a valid definition. Basically my feeling is that if you "feel" estranged, you probably are. Cody felt estranged. Her daughter doesn't communicate as much as she once did. They are far away from one another. It's logical to me. Here's another definition:

Estrangement:

alienation: separation resulting from hostility
alienation: the feeling of being alienated from other people
wordnet.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

To make hostile, unsympathetic, or indifferent; alienate.
To remove from an accustomed place or set of associations.

1.to turn away in feeling or affection; make unfriendly or hostile; alienate the affections of: Their quarrel estranged the two friends.
2. to remove to or keep at a distance: The necessity for traveling on business has estranged him from his family.
3. to divert from the original use or possessor.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/estrangement


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Thanks Silver

I hadn't really noticed that you had any hesitation in responding to anything I have posted. But, I have noticed you like to repeat yourself.

It also seems more than passing strange that you are suddenly upset by the word arse, when I recall over in the stepfamily forum when you said in reference to your controlling, manipulative stepmother Whatever _ _ _ _ wants... _ _ _ _ gets... One doesn't have to have too much of an imagination to know which word fits in there.

I think you are very well aware of the nature and meaning of the estrangements that are in these posts.



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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Actually Colleen, I'm not suddenly upset over the word you said, but the context in which you said it. I was disturbed when you wrote that, and it made me hesitant to answer you again.

Perhaps your imagination is a little more active than mine. To explain what I was saying prior about my stepmother, it was a reference to a song from 1955... "whatever Lola wants...Lola gets...", but the blank indicates my stepmother's name. Perhaps you haven't heard it?


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Oh ladies, I am so sorry for my whining about my daughter, when you people have REAL estrangement issues with your children. I was searching the net for advice on how to get over my daughter living so far away. And yes, it will be my fault should an estrangement happen with my daughter. I have to learn to accept her choice, and at least try to be happy about it. It is just taking me so long to come to terms with this. I keep thinking I did something wrong to have her move so far away....Anyway, I'm sorry I am in the wrong forum.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Cody, you're fine. I don't think you are on the wrong forum. This is the parents forum, to post on issues people have with parenting, good and bad. Maybe a new thread would be good, but you have every right to be here.
Take care, I hope your issues are resolved soon,
~Silver


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Just an update on my situation. I called my granddaughter on her birthday 2 days before she was having a party of which I was not invited to. She is 11 now. So she asked me if I was coming to her party. They live a few hours away. I told her I would try to make it. (I have a medical problem which prevents me from traveling for longer than an hour at a time) We had a wonderful conversation, and she asked me if she could have a sleep over at my house. I told her she was certainly welcome to come for a sleep over anytime she wanted, we then said the "I love you's" and hung up. A half hour later my son calls me and starts to rip me a new one. He told me I was not invited and that he didn't ever want to see my face again. He told me he hates me and that I am not a mother and certainly not his mother. And as far as mothers go he could only think of a couple others who were worse than I am. I let him talk thinking that if he got this out it would be better. He went on to say that I was never to have the children at my house and that I would never be allowed to whisper in their ear or be alone with them for any amount of time. I asked him what has brought this about and he was very evasive. He then went on to say things about his childhood that were not true. I do not understand what is going on. He made it very clear that I was not invited to any more of "his" families functions.
I am feeling great loss and find it hard to live each day with the pain. I have called my doctor and talked with a counselor and have spoken with several really great friends. Everyone has been wonderful, including those of you who understand. I am grateful to have a place to express my feelings. I appreciate your listening ears. I am not looking for solutions, because I am very sure that the solution is not mine to find. Just knowing that I can log on to support is a great help to me. Thank you and keep up the good work.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

sanjean,
I am so sorry. I know how you are hurting. One thing you can hold onto is your granddaughter knows you love her. Someday this will change and she will be an adult, but I am sure you will not have to wait that long.
Isn't it strange that someone (???) can tell our children untrue things that don't even sound logical considering they know us and know they can't be true and yet they only only believe it but close us off as well! It's amazing. I got a call one time questioning me from one of my sons. I was hurt he would even ask me such a thing, I answered and he said that is what I thought-GOOD! But knowing me I asked him does that sound like me-he said no-but needed to ask. Well, at least he asked-they are not asking anything now. I am out the door. So sorry. Make some plans for that day, and if you don't feel like going out, have someone over.
Take care and I understand.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

straycat, Thank you for the kind words and the caring. I spoke with the pastor at church today and he assured me that I had done everything I could. He also told me that I was a welcomed member of his family and that helps a lot. My faith will get me through this. It really helps to know there are those such as you out there who understand my feelings because unless you have experienced this there is no way you can understand.

So what do you mean when you say you are out the door?
And are your children not speaking to you anymore?
That is so sad.
Is it this "ME" generation? I can't imagine it was this difficult for my parents. It really seems that this generation needs someone to blame and we are it. What ever happened to taking responsibility?
Again thank you for your understanding. sanjean

P.S. For those with unkind responses, please think before you type (speak), why add insult to injury, I speak for myself when I say that the negative response has negative effect. I would like to see less of the parent (mother) bashing here, as that is what I am trying to recover from.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

sanjean,
You are so very welcome. It does help to have someone to talk to (write to) that understands. I know. Inf fact I was up in the middle of the night and was searching for answers and found this site. I am so grateful to everyone who has like you said-given back with their kind words. What I meant when I said I was out the door. I've been "cut out " of three of my children's life. One going on 3 years, two going on 2 years. I have a fourth child -a daughter who died. They know how deeply ,tragically hurt -crushed -I always will be losing her and then they cut me out of their lfe. The best that I can tell is the reason is I finally (after years of cheating on me) divorced their Dad. It just got to be so very lonely and embarrassing too. He told them lies-I refused to talk about him...but despite them knowing he cheated on me I guess love him not only more but also had no respect for me. It's a long story...Anyway I do understand your pain. I am also missing out on a grandson, whom I adore. I miss him so much. This is a hard season for all of us here, and I know we will find a peace having each other but it still is very hard.
I am so glad sanjean you have an understanding pastor who welcomes you. You will have blessings alone this path, be sure and enjoy every one!
stray


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Sanjean, the last time I saw my grands was right before one's 5th birthday. She asked me if I was coming to her party; she reminded me that I had not been at her 4th party (I'd told her I had to work) and I told her that she would have to ask her mother. I, too, brought the subject up with my daughter who said to me "It doesn't mean anything, she asks everyone to come to her party, even the mailman." Well, it did mean something to the child or else she would not have mentioned the fact that I was not at her 4th birthday party.

I had not been allowed to attend either her 3rd or 4th birthday parties because her father was going to be present.

Even at the young age of 5, she will remember this and I am certain that she has picked up on the attitude of her parents towards me and she will be able to see a dissonance, as she and her sister had spent so much time with me before the final brake in the relationship.

Someday this will come back to haunt my daughter. Her husband will treat her in the same way he treats others, not just me. I know for a fact that he has been extremely controlling with others, both in and outside of the family, and I also know that he is not liked by many people at his place of business probably because many suspect his proclivities.

But it's her problem now. I am here for her when she and if she chooses to leave him.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Estrangedgrammie...

"It doesn't mean anything, she asks everyone to come to her party, even the mailman."

She probably does invite the mailman. And imagine how happy she would be if he came!!! My dd wants everyone important to her to be at her birthday too! (not to put you on par with the mailman...) But that means nothing, in my opinion. She invites people important to her. She probably has a lot of people important to her. It's wrong to me for her to minimalize her daughter's interest in your participation. I'm sure she did want you there, and I'm sorry you were unable to attend something so important to her.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I wrote a long letter and then somehow it was deleted.
So I'll make this very short. What about the adult son who has a little sister who loved him very much. He turned on me and his sister at the same time (she's now 8). So yesterday he emails her saying that he wants to see her and do some things with her. For the last two years I've dealt with her tears, her secret "things" that she keeps from when they were close. She has refused to send him anything for Christmas and has built up a wall to this pain.
So, do I allow this and risk the pain that it will bring her? Or do I protect her and let her make the decision when she's older?
Please...only kind remarks are requested.

Thanks!


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

OMG.. stillhurting..
I have the EXACT situation..
my adult son has a little sister that adores him.. she is heart broken.. she's now 11 but happened when she was 9.
I have been talking to my daughter on a regular basis about the situation .. assuring her that it has NOTHING to do with her, but I was faced with the same decision. My DIL and I had a conversation and she asked if they could start taking my daughter again.. I told her that if she wanted to be part of the family and participate.. then of course, but my daughter wasn't going to be a pawn in some weird "divorce". I would not be a responsible parent to allow that.. what kind of example does that set.. so she then said.. ok.. so you are saying we have to pay Homage to you first and then we can take DD? I was nice about it, but basically.. YES.. be part of the family or forget it.
I too have dealt with the tears and found her looking at the "secret" things.. she keeps things in scrapbooks and special places.
I personally think that I would rather take the risk to not expose her to an example of bad behavior.. if you need to get help to talk to her.. then by all means.. I have explained the situation to the school guidance counselors, etc. I have to say it has gotten easier I think.. she was with her father 2 weekends ago and they walked into a local eatery where her brother and wife were sitting at the counter. My husband said.. say hello to your brother, which she did.. then they sat down, but she wanted to go back to talk to them.. she did.. then when the food came she went back to the table to eat. When they finished they went up to pay and say goodbye.. my son and his wife were already half way out the door.. they weren't going to say goodbye. My husband said.. go tell your brother goodbye.. she ran over to them and they tossed a goodbye over their shoulders while leaving. soo so sad.. but we talked about it and I think she is pretty smart.. I give her a lot of credit. I think you have to do what you think is best as her mother.. what if he interacts with her once, and then disappears again.. how do you explain that it's ok that your son doesn't want anything to do with you.. does that say to her that someday when she gets upset with you she can do the same? but then again, you worry that someday, they will turn it around on you and say... you kept me from him, etc..
I totally understand your dilemma..

I am sorry I don't have better advice, but want you to know you are not alone..
hugs...


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

sarahsmom,
Thank you SO MUCH for your letter! I'm so sorry that you and your daughter have had to go through this, as I truly understand the pain.
I give your husband a lot of credit for his handling of that situation.
Part of the problem here is that my daughters father walked out when I was 6 weeks pregnant. She has had to deal with the rejection of that and I worry that she'll think that men can treat her this way.
Let me add (because I need to) I'm a professional with a graduate level degree as is her father. I support myself and my daughter. I am self employed as a consultant and I homeschool her (which has been so much fun).
I want her to grow up with healthy relationships. However, as you said, I worry that someday she'll feel that I kept them apart.
It's an awful place to be!
I wish someone could just wave a magic wand and I'd know what to do...
Thanks for your help.
I wish you all the best!

There is some comfort in knowing that I'm not alone!


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Stillhurting..

I understand your thoughts.. I too was a single parent.. but I think that if you do everything you can to show her what healthy relationships are, she will be fine..
we need to give these kids credit and use these situations as learning examples.. I think if you can turn it into a conversation about how you should treat people.. you can be ahead of the game. I mean, life isn't all rosebuds after all, and people, sometimes people you love can disappoint you, etc. but we have to feel sad for them that they are missing life's opportunities. I think that has been the hardest for my daughter.. she will make comments like.. they don't even know that I got my ears pierced.. but she did say once that she knew she could have a relationship with them someday and that her relationship with them was different than mine...
I wish I could wave the wand for you.. but I know you will do the right thing..


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

sarahsmom,
Thanks so much for helping me and for your words of wisdom. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves that we're doing the best we can and can't make everyone happy all the time.
During the holidays, being estranged from your children (they'll always be our children) seems to be more painful. Well, maybe not more painful but I sure think about it more often.
No matter what our story, we all share a loss that we feel very deeply.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Sarasmom, I so agree with your not allowing your son and dil to take his sister out with them. I have heard too many stories where these estrangees brainwash the other siblings, just as divorced parents do (or try to do) to their kids. Not all divorcee's do this, I know many handle things very amicably, but other ones can turn the kids against the mom or dad. That is not healthy.

I find your situation completely understandable and would have done the exact same thing.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Hello everyone one of you... I have to say that after seeing a counselor a couple of times in the past couple of months and having her tell me that I really don't need her, it makes me feel pretty good to know that I can accept myself just as I am and know in my heart that I did the best I could raising my adult son. No it does not take away all the pain but it does make it easier to know that this isn't all about me and what I did or didn't do as a mother. I can look at the situation differently now because I can let it go. That's right, it isn't mine and I do not have to hang onto the "what if's" or the "I should have done this or that's". I pray every day that my son will see the destruction he is leaving in his wake and change his ways. I also pray that my grandchildren are kept from having this affect their lives in any kind of negative way. Those are things I can do, and I will gladly do them. As much as I would love to have my whole family together for Christmas I understand that at this point it just isn't going to happen. I am going to hold my head up and go on living my life in the best way I can. This is my present to myself. I am someone special and I will respect myself enough to take care of me.
My 12 year old daughter understands I am going through a difficult time and she also thought it was because of her, but I talked with her and told her that it has nothing to do with her, she accepts that and is growing into a wonderful caring person. I believe that only God knows why we have to endure all this pain and that in the end it will all be ok, everything is going to be ok.
So, my message to each of you this Christmas season is to know that you are loved and that we go through things for a reason. We may never know what that reason is but in my world we are only here for a little while. Live each day as though it is your last, with happiness and joy.
Merry Christmas, sanjean


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Hi everyone,

I haven't posted for awhile but I did want to pass along some hope. I have been praying faithfully for 16 months now for a miracle, that our son would return to his faith and to us, his family. I did recieve a small miracle this Christmas. My husband and I, along with his younger sisters, age 8 and 12 stopped into our sons place of work a few days before Christmas. His sisters ran to him and the youngest one jumped into his arms. He was so happy to see them and made some good eye contact with us and talked with us too. We stayed for 30 min or so. The following day he got in contact with our oldest daughter (via cell phone texting) and asked what they wanted for Christmas. I prayed to St. Jude that our son might even come to our house for a visit on Christmas day, since last Christmas the girls opened their gifts from him on the sidewalk in the snow at their school. Well, he did come over and stayed 20-25 minutes, although he didn't take off his coat. We think she (dil) might have been sitting in his car the whole time. When he left I gave him a big hug, to which he reciprocated and a kiss on the cheek. He also hugged his dad. It was so wonderful to see him, it's been a long time.

I am however a little depressed now, wondering if it will be another year before we see him again. Our youngest daughter asked later that night when we could see him again with tears in her eyes. We decided early on when all this mess started, that it was best if the girls didn't spend time alone without us there. We didn't feel it was right to make them feel as if they were in the middle. I still think that is the right decision. Until the situation is worked out and we are again a functioning family, I believe the girls should not be placed in uncomfortable situations.

I am attaching the prayer to St. Jude.

Prayer in Trials

Most Holy Apostle, St.Jude, faithful servant and friend of Jesus, the name of the traitor who delivered your beloved Master into the hands of His enemies, has caused you to be forgotten by many; but the Church honors and invokes you universally as the patron of hopeless cases of things despaired of. O' St. Jude, pray for me who am so miserable; make use, I implore you of that particular privilege accorded to you to bring visible and speedy help, where help is almost despaired of. Come to my assistance in this great need that I may receive consolation and encouragement of Heaven in all my necessities, tribulations and sufferings and that I may thank God along with you and all the saints forever. I promise you, O blessed St.Jude to be ever mindful of this great favor and I will never cease to honor you as my special and powerful patron & to do all in my power to encourage devotion to you.

Amen

I pray for all of the mothers on this site. May 2009 bring all of us some happiness and peace.

Sincerely,
Pam


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I have read all your posts tonight and have received some very good advice and have an idea how to deal with this situation. My son this christmas has refused all contact with me-he is 44 and i am 61-he has a family and i have not seen the little ones for over a year. all this happened at christmas time-i am devastated-he is still talking to some of his siblings but not all. no one knows why he has turned away from the family but i am going to e-mail him next week and at least i hope i get some kind of answer as to why this has happened. my heart is braking in a million pieces-we hear the term heart ache and now i know what that actually feels like-i will love him forever-i will love all my children forever-but how long is forever at my age-is this the end of our relationship. so many questions-i keep thinking what did i do wrong-what did i say wrong-i am not mad at him but he seems to be upset with me for some reason. i cannot say goodbye-he was my first born-i just want to stop the hurt and the tears. why did this happen-i feel like a failure-i feel so ashamed-why did this happen?


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My husband and I are in our 60's. Last year we sold our home to our daughter so she could use the equity to adopt a child as a single parent. We had an FHA mortgage that was our safety net in case my husband became ill because he is diabetic, the worst happened. My daughter used all the money, my husband is now on total disability and 5mo after the child came she left. Now none of our 5 children talk to us. They run for cover thinking we might need something. Originally my daughter was going to pay half the mortgage, but now she says she doesn't have it even tho she is rent free at her brother's home, my son, and just bought a new car. We are possibly going to lose our home, I can't find a job, my other daughter just had a baby and I wasn't invited to the shower. I have had some very heated exchanges with all of them. I hope someday I can move on. But in everything they have said and done, I don't know how. They would only come back if I had money. We helped 2 of them get homes and saved the third's during a messy divorce. I guess we were enablers, but if God gives me one more chance to pull out of this I am really done. I will only be there parent, not there bank. Sorry to say but misery does love company and I so glad I found this site.


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WOW pia 67- i am having enough stress with one but you have multiple stresses-i feel so bad for you-actually i am trying to stay positive but in my late hours at bedtime i do let myself feel whatever i have to. In the day i put on a smile and go about my business-only my husband and my best friend and my kids know about this situation. i too am glad i found this site and can share anonymously my trials and tribulations. i will pray for you tonight pia67 as you should be content in your senior years-not stressed out like this. your reward is not on this earth but you will be rewarded at some time. If we can reach out and comfort each other and be strong for each other we will get through whatever we have to. take care and good luck.


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pia67, I also am praying for your situation. You WILL make it thru this and so will your husband. Isn't is amazing how the children go away when there is no more money to be had? Are the other 4 mad because you helped the one daughter?


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Thank you all i am so grateful for your prayers. i do trust in God and eventho i don't understand i'm sure He has a plan for us. You are probably right i was focused on one child because we had already helped the others so maybe that's why they are mad. What i really miss and is so incredibly hard to talk about is my grandchildren.


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I know, I have 3 grandchildren that I did not get to see or talk to during the holidays and I really hate to think that they will grow up thinking that I don't love them. I really do but my daughter won't let us have any contact with them. She has even broke off her relationship with my son and I did not think that would ever happen they had always been so close. I think he has been even more hurt than me by this.


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I know, I have 3 grandchildren that I did not get to see or talk to during the holidays and I really hate to think that they will grow up thinking that I don't love them. I really do but my daughter won't let us have any contact with them. She has even broke off her relationship with my son and I did not think that would ever happen they had always been so close. I think he has been even more hurt than me by this.


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i miss my adopted grandson so much. For the first 5 mo I took care of him while my daughter worked, but i saw him at halloween and he came running up to me and held me so tight, OH GOD IT HURTS. my other daughter bought the house across the street and one of my sons lives next door so like a puppy to the window i get to see them from my house i'm so sad thank you for your compassion


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pia67,
I will also keep you in my prayers. It does help so much to know that we are not alone in this suffering. All the "what if's", "how could this have happened" can drive you crazy if you let it. I try to keep busy, I pray for our family all the time and I try to tell myself that I can't do anymore, I did the best that I could. I hope in time he will miss having a family. We are the ones with their history. It must be sad to have no history. When other people talk about their growing up years, look at pictures, etc. I would think they would feel badly. I like remembering things with my own mother. Hearing about trips and little things we did together. I just can't understand how they can just walk away from their past.
Hang in there, your not alone.


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i heard from my son today by e-mail. he does not want anything to do with me-he wants to be left alone-i have not seen him or talked to him for 14 months. he says he does not feel close to me-he says the accumalation of the past years has made him not want to contact me or me contact him. it was a very short e-mail. it hurt me deeply-i just wanted to die. He says he does not owe me any explanation. yes he does-yes he does. now i am mad-god help me


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God help us all, but probably them the most!!!!!


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I am the mother of 4 daughters, ages 34, 32, 29 and 22. My husband and I have been married for 40 years. My husband and our other three daughters have been estranged from our oldest daughter/sister for about 10 years. For a brief period of about a year during this 10 year span of our estrangement, we were able to re-establish a relationship with our daughter and even got to visit she and her husband over a weekend. Following this visit our daughter broke off the relationship again. Estrangement from your child has to be the most difficult thing a parent could ever face, more particularly I think, for a mother.

What have I learned? Realizing that I can only change myself and that changing myself has to take priority in my life. Be honest. Make improvements and recognize with God's help I can improve. Learn something new! A book that has helped me so much is by Joel Osteen, "Your Best Life Now." That the things we put into our minds, the things we say are going to play out in our life. Really love and embrace your other children. They need to know they are really cared about and they receive as much attention as the one we feel we have lost and grieve over. I have found that I can turn to other famiy members that care about me/us for support.

And even with all the sources and resources that help I find times when I'm really sad. I miss my daughter. I love her so much!! I want her back in my life!!!

I read on some site where a mother suggested making a memory box where you fill it with all the things you hold most dear about that child. I think I will do that.

Thank you for this forum where mother's can share from the heart and others understand. I am always open to suggestions and help.


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Hello all, I pray daily for each of you. God knows how difficult this is for each of us. So, what can we do? Even though it hurts we can pray. Pray without ceasing. Ask for help. We know we are not alone. We have each other. I thank God each day that there is a place (here on this site) to get the understanding and love that we deserve. Yes we deserve this. Each of us have done the very best we could to raise our children "in the way they should go" however, life is not that simple. Sometimes I wonder if God allows these things to happen to bring us closer to Him. It brought me closer to Him. A very close friend of mine let me borrow a book called "Praying the Prodigals Home" by Quin Sherrer and Ruthanne Garlock, I have only just started reading this book and I have already found it useful.
I also believe that this is not a battle with my son, it is a battle with Satan. Satan has his grip on my son and I am in battle with Satan. I make sure daily to pray that Satan is overcome with Gods love for my son. I also have to make a conscious effort to thank God for being with me in my battle. There is hope.
I pray that each of you can believe that you each did the best you could and this battle is not your fault. I hope that you will stand with me and pray that our children will be released from Satans grip.
Thanks to each of you for sharing your stories, it is of great help to me. sanjean


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Thank you for all of the recent posts. The Christmas season has been so hard and I have found myself crying often and feeling helpless with the estrangement from my daughter. I am so grateful to have found this forum!!! I have been estranged from my daughter since 2000 and ached to have a support group to join to help with this pain. I had really gotten to the point that I believed there was no one else out there with this situation. By reading your posts it is helping me to accept that maybe it really isn't my fault. For years I have wished that my daughter would just tell me what it is I did. If only she would tell me then I could say, "I'm sorry...I love you...I will do anything to have you in our lives again" But there has never been an explanation. My husband asked me once why I continued to want to blame myself and I think I am very willing to take the blame for this estrangement if it will correct itself. Over the years I am slowly seeing that no matter what I do...or did not do...my daughter would still not want to be part of our lives. I am hearing this from other moms on this site and am identifying with all your pain. Thank you for the St. Jude prayer Pamb 100...God Bless! and thank you for your suggestion of a box to keep all special memories in abourelizabeth. I think this will be a healing process and I am going to begin one. My daughter's room still has many of her things in it that I have been unable to pack up although it has been 9 years. It is like a death. Oh how my heart aches!!!!!!!
I pray for all the other moms/grandmoms on this site. It is good to be able to share. Keep the faith.


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sanjean I agree with you so much. satan is in this totally. I pray every night for my son. I miss the sweet and loving son he used to be. God is good and I believe that everything will eventually work out but I have had to accept that it may be years before my son returns to the values and beliefs he was raised with though. That is so painful for me.

Have any of you wondered about alcoholism with your kids? The way they can disconnect so easily. In my experience, (with my mother in law/ bother in law, I have seen it all). When it comes to drinking, they (alcoholics) seem to treat friends wonderfully but their families are treated terribly. I told my son early on to watch his drinking. With so many alcoholics in the family, he should be very careful. Now when I look back, I am seeing a pattern. As he got older, he would seem resentful if we ever asked him to do anything for us, (when he lived at home). He seemed to expect more and more from us instead of getting more independent like we thought he should have been. We have two younger daughters and they take a lot of our time and our money. My husband is making less than he did when our son was young so we have downsized a lot. I have been saying to myself that when the money ran out, so did our son. I can't stand to think of him this way, but the longer this estrangment goes on, the more I realize how bad things were and for a lot longer than I have wanted to admit.

I have a good friend, her daughter is now living with her boyfriend. The only time her daughter calls her now is if she needs something from her and her husband. Her daughter and bf showed up for Christmas, came late, brought no gifts for them and then left early. My friend is very hurt. Her daughter also believes that her parents should pay for their wedding even though her dad (my friends husband) is out of work. I told my friend, "even if you pay for it, she might still turn away from you". That's what our son did. We paid for a lot of my son and dil wedding. Two dresses for his little sisters to be in the wedding, a very expensive rehearsal dinner, all the flowers for the wedding, I paid for the shower on our side, a honeymoon to Cancun and now they have nothing to do with us.

I'm sure you have all heard that 40 is the new 20. Well with our kids I think 30 is just a new group of teenagers.



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Thank you pamb 100.
I think you are right about the 30 being the new teenager. Makes me wonder how I made through the 30's.
I also believe that a lot of this has to do with the lack of commom sense, consideration for others, understanding, caring, spiritual guidance and of course love.
I am not going to sit back and feel sorry for myself any longer, YES, I miss my son, and my grandchildren but, I also have to live my life to its' fullest. I realize that it is wasteful to hang onto the past and the regrets that are from that time. The past is PAST and I am a different person than I was. I am better and I continue to strive to be even better tomorrow than I am today. For me it is all about growth, both emotional and spiritual.
Today, I choose to be happy and I know that this new year is going to be a good one. I can feel the light and love.
Consider doing something for you today, it is a beginning of the healing process. God Bless


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Motherlode, my heart breaks as I read our post about the email you received from your son. I received the same email from my son a year ago. It all stemmed from his marriage to a very nasty young lady who counselors believe has borderline personality disorder. Lots of nastiness on her part and I blocked every arrow she threw; that made my son mad because he just wanted me to give in to everything she demanded and keep it peaceful. Even after they came to our house after the wedding and she was verbally abusive and ended up walking out shouting back at us "F _ _ _ you". Even then I called my son and said we all have said/done things that need to be forgiven, we need to move on with love and respect, etc. and he sent me a similar email. We are moving on; I haven't seen him in 16 months or heard from him. It is hard to move on. I pray about it daily. I am so sorry for you.


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Hi, I am new to this forum and so thankful that I found it. I have been reading your postings for the past couple of months and have cried while reading many of them. I and my husband have been estranged from our 42 year old daughter since June of 2008. In the past several years she became more and more disrespectful and I kept quiet and put up with it. Finally, it got to a point where I had enough of being mistreated and demanded that she act like a respectful daughter and I wanted an apology. She refuses to talk to us now unless we go to a family therapist. I do not think that we need a therapist, we just need to sit and discuss what it is that is causing the differences between us, but I did agree to go to a therapist who is a priest also, but she refused. I believe, as you do, sanjean that Satan has taken over our children and that we need to pray to God for him to help our them. I know that my daughter cannot have any faith because if she did she would never be treating her parants the way she is. I think also that we are given these trials to help us get closer to God and ask for his help, but I also think that our children may be going through these trials to make them turn back to God once they see that happiness will never be theirs as long as they are being cruel and disrespectful to their parents. If they are acting this way towards us, you know that they must be treating alot of other people the same way. I agree with so much of what you say sanjean and believe as you do that this behavior stems from a lack of common sense, consideration for others, understanding, caring, spiritual guidance and love. I am at the stage where now I am angry and as I would never let anyone else treat me in the manner in which my daughter is treating me, why would I let her, whom I raised with all the love that I could, was there whenever she needed me, treat me this way. I know that I have made some mistakes as a mother, who doesn't. But, they were all made because I was young and inexperienced at being a mother and because I loved them and did not want any harm to come to them. I say mothers, don't put yourselves down. You all sound like you are and were great mothers who are grieving from the lost of their children which is caused by those children you cared for. When many pray together it is very effective. I will pray for all of you and I pray that you will pray for me.


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Every night before I go to bed I come to this site and gain some strength and hope from each of you. Thank you all for your comments and I too return the support and love I feel here. As my son requested I have not "bothered" him after his e-mail the other day. My other son was stunned and told me just to give him time and maybe he will turn around. I am the third person in our family he has turned against-guess I am in good company then. As you can tell I am upset with him-he is well educated and successful and should be more tolerant than this of his own flesh and blood. The remaining siblings he does talk to do not want to rock the boat and skirt any conversation about me or his other 2 brothers he has disowned. I have to let my adult children make their own decisions about this and not be judgemental-but it is hard to restrain myself sometimes-but I do. I keep it all inside except for this forum-god bless you all.


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Hi to all of you I've been praying for all of us too. I did get to see 2 of my grandchildren this weekend, because they were outside, I live across the street, and by the way I was here before they decided to move there, we were very close then. I too have pictures and articles all around my house, sometimes I feel it's like walking a gauntlet down my hall. I can't bring myself to pack them in a box, I have trouble looking at all the memories too, I guess it's to fresh yet, but with God's help, in time. I'll pray again tonight for us all that we find peace and somekind of closure.


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I am new to this forum and have just read through all of the heartbreaking posts. I am convinced that something has happened to our society, this insane trend is spreading like a wildfire, and yet we few mothers live our lives in hidden pain and relative silence. I don't know what it is, but I do agree with other posters on this forum, that the source is pure evil. My story is way too long and complicated to put in one post, but hopefully I can tell a little more each time I write. I am a Christian mother of four adult sons. I have been going through this unique heartache for many years, with three of my four sons on and off. Son #2 started it, by not speaking to me for 3 years, then he came back, and two years later left again. He has not spoken to me now for 7 years.....I have pleaded, offered to make apologies for whatever???, asked to meet and talk, sent cards and gifts, but all I get is "I just don't like you" and "I don't have the time or the energy to deal with you." Otherwise, no contact whatsoever. Son #1 followed later and cut me off 3 years ago. This estrangement involves a nasty DIL and entitlement to money. My youngest does not like my Christian beliefs as they relate to his lifestyle. He left for 3 years, then back again for 2 years telling me how much he loved me and would never hurt me again....and now once again he left just last month and will not answer calls or emails from me. Nothing could have ever convinced me that this kind of pain would be my fate, not just with 1, but with 3 of my precious "babies." I always feared loosing my children to death, but never this kind of "death." I have prayed daily, read dozens of books, seen several counselors, gone on and off anti-depressants, and I have found only one thing has helped me...to rest daily in my trust and belief that God loves me, that He knows and cares deeply what is happening in my life and for reasons that I may never understand, He is allowing this in my life today for some GOOD. There is nothing more I know to do, I have done all that I can, but now I wait and continue to pray. God's promises are..."All things work together for GOOD to them that love the Lord" Rom. 8:28" and "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not unto thine OWN understanding; In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths." Prov. 3: 5-6. "For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11. These are 3 of the many promises that I repeat over and over each day until they sink in, quiet my heart, and give me peace. I hope they will help others here also. I will write each of the stories of sons #1, #2 and #4 (#3 is the only one I have in my life). I also have two little grandchildren that I have never been allowed to see. I was able to get my hands on a photo of one, but not the other, I don't know their birthdates or anything else about them. I only wish that somehow the media would bring attention to this horrible nightmare that mothers are going through. I have found that there are many forums like this one, and so many mothers all over the country share our pain and our confusion. Maybe if we truly form some sort of alliance and all write letters to CNN, someone would cover this and give it the national attention it deserves. I am serious about this. The other thing that is personally very difficult for me is the struggle that I have to keep from isolating myself. I want to try in this new year to overcome this horrible sense of not belonging....I don't feel like a "mom" anymore, and certainly not like a "grandmother." Yet, every woman I encounter in my age group (57) is a Mom and a Grandma, and their lives center around their adult children and grandchildren. Having social interactions with them is torture, pure and simple. I can't remember the last time I have made a new friend....I don't know what to say when they ask if I have kids. I don't want to cry and I don't want to be the depressed person who has problems.....so I keep to myself and it is very lonely, indeed. I love people, but I have become a social cripple, a leper of sorts. I want to change this, I can't take the lonliness, and I pray that God gives me the strength to find a way out of this self-imposed prison. I would love to know if anyone on this forum lives near Southern California, because I really need to be around people that understand, and make some new friends. I, like many of you, have searched every inch of my heart, even begging God to reveal anything that I might be somehow forgetting or overlooking, anything that could give me a clue as to what I could have done that was so awful that I would loose my own children. I think we all probably know of women who were not exactly the greatest of mothers.....and yet they are loved and surrounded by their adult kids and grandkids!!!! It might sound crazy to say, but I would almost feel better if I knew that I had been a drunkard, or an abuser, or had somehow abandoned my children, then I would at least have a reason for this insanity. But, I was not. I was the mom who read bedtime stories, got up in the middle of the night to check them, prayed with them, told them I loved them constantly, listened to them, taught them right from wrong, always knew where they were, planned their birthday parties, helped with their school projects, listened to their problems, wiped their tears, picked up their underwear, and rooted for their homeruns. No, I'm not perfect.....but I am pretty high up on the scale of mothering. This should not have happened to me, so I know that nobody is immune and I believe it when others here say that they were good mothers....because we were!


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dear gina112-until this happened to me last month i never dreamed it was so widespread but i can understand the public not knowing this. It feels so shameful as a mother for me and very few people know about this in my family-just my other 5 children and husbannd and my best friend-taht is it and i am not telling anyone i personally know and certainly i could never endure the public scrutiny that would certainly follow. I truly am a coward i guess. i too tried my best with my kids but i seemed to have failed my oldest somehow. when i was going to college for my social worker degree he sent me a letter-i was 37 and he was 20. in his letter he said i was a role model for him-getting my education in my mid 30s and raising children and working. now this. it is an about turn i never saw coming. when the 4 boys were under 6 years i played a game with them i made up-loving time. I would sit on the couch and say -what time is it? they would all yell -LOVING TIME- and run and jump in my arms for hugs and kisses. wow-what can i say? i am too old now-61-to play that with them but i hope they remember i love them just as much today as ever-even the estranged son. maybe he needed more love than i had to give. these memories make me cry and i cannot see to type. darn it! don't mind me i am just venting. i meant to send some words of support to gina but got wrapped up in myself-sorry gina. maybe i am not the one to reach out to you yet-this is very raw for me-very painful. i know there are some bad memories for him as he was abused by a family member and i was not able to know anything until my second son told me and then i acted immediatley. the damage was done by then and i think he blames me for not being protective of them as i should have been-if i would have known or know the signs to see. it was after that i went to be a social worker and help others taht had gone through this type of abuse but too late to help my own child. yes he has reasons to be bitter but i had asked his forgiveness 10 years ago and he seemed to have been able to do it. Anguish is ANGER-GUILT-SHAME. i feel all the above today. god bless you all


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gina112...

all sounds familiar.. I have lost 2 sons to money, DIL and entitlement..
that's why I am working on this documentary so that this awful subject might be brought to people's attention. I think it's alot deeper and more complicated than a news story.
Please look at my posts called Documentary..
I have interviewed 6 people so far and have been able to put together 37 minutes.. I am submitting it to Sundance next month in hopes of getting a grant.. I will keep you all posted.


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i feel for all of you. i wish there was something magical i could say to take away your pain and suffering away. you don't have to be mother of the year to expect consideration from your adult children. life throws you many curve balls and we all soon realize our limitations not only as parents but also as individuals. many of us here were not perfect and made a great deal of mistakes but we did the best we could and our intent was to do good.
or perhaps we were not the best parents and on some level we failed to be there for them at all times. why do our adult children fail to have some compassion? they're so willing to forgive their own faults and shortcomings and yet hold their elder parents to another standard that is unattainable. why the double standard? unless someone was guilty of actual physical, sexual or insane psychologial abuse why do our adult children feel as though they've been victimized. sadly life is not perfect everyone one of us have had to deal with unexpected hardships as we raised our children. sometimes we responded well and other times we could have, in hindsight, made other choices. the point is no one is perfect. why can't our adult children realize we were children once, we had dreams, we had parents that were also not perfect and we had to overcome many things that were unfair and yet we somehow moved forward without wasting time blaming our parents for the consequences of our choices. we realized that it's just a part of living. our adult children appear to hear the songs but not the words.


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I would urge our new friends to try very hard not to feel shame about your estrangement. I would also urge you to talk about it to everyone you know because 1. you never know when you will find someone else who is keeping silent and would be thankful to know they are not alone and 2. as Joshua Coleman wrote in his blog estrangement is becoming a "national epidemic" - it must be talked about openly.

Years ago, if someone in a family suffered with cancer, it was kept quiet, as if cancer were a disease that would spread just by mentioning the word. Finally, people started to talk about it, which led to more research, screenings and support groups for families and patients suffering from the disease.

Estrangement is at the stage that cancer was years ago. IT MUST BE TALKED ABOUT! Parents must know there is no shame falling on them to having been cut off from their children; our children must learn of the harm they are doing to themselves and to their children by continuing their estrangement.

Sarahsmom is doing something wonderful for all of us, including our estranged children. I wish her the best of luck.


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sarahsmom - How do you find your posts called documentary?


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sarahsmom - Thank you for creating a documentary on this subject. I too agree that it needs to be brought out in the open so that hopefully the cause for it can be found. Along with your documentary, did you ever think of contacting the Dr. Phil show regarding this subject. I watch him all the time and he and his team of professionals delveinto problems and try to find a reason and a cure for them. I am looking forward to seeing your documentary and I know that you will be blessed by God for making it. You are in my prayers. pia67- I feel so sorry for you. AsI said above, I watch the Dr. Phil show and one of the things that Dr. Phil says regarding relationships and even in his diet book is "People do what works. You will not maintain any behavior that is not providing you with some kind of payoff. I believe that our children are continuing to hold their relationship from us because in some way it is making them feel superior and in control of us. They are like bullies. They say and do all types of nasty things to us, but when you confront them, they back away and hide without any explanation for their behavior. I have decided that my life will go on without my daughter and she will not control it. I love her, and I always will, but I do not like the person that she has become. I am giving more love and attention to my other children and husband because they deserve it and I plan to find volunteer work in which I can devote my free time to helping others. Pia if you need money and are having a hard time finding a job, why don't you substitute in the schools or babysit in your home or in the homes of others. It would get you out of the house and you would make some money to help with the bills.You can believe that your children are watching and will see you becoming more independent and maybe they will become a little worried that your full attention isn't on them and then the satisfaction that they may be getting from their cruel behavior towards you will not longer be so rewarding. Make a life for you and your husband. When you see your grandchildren outside go out and pretend you are gardening. I'm sure that they will wave to you. You're children can't keep their children in the house all the time. As yousaid you lived in your house before they bought theirs. These are only suggestions. I don't know if they will work, but I feel if your children see that you can live a fulfilling life without them, they may try to find their way back into your life because - AFTER ALL YOU ARE THEIR MOTHER! God bless you pia and I only wish the best for you. gina 12 - I too feel like you regarding not wanting to talk about my separation from my daughter. My sons, husband and this forum are the only ones who know. I am embarrassed by the way my daughter is acting and I will not even talk about it to my sister or friend. She was raised in a good home, also. She was always loved and encouraged. I have no idea what is going on in her head. I think that we do not talk to others about this because we do not want to be judged. I wish only the best for you and you will be in my prayers.


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To all..
Thank you SO much for your kind words of encouragement..
I am working hard, but need to interview many more people..

Dr Coleman has said he will participate, but I have to get to CA to do it! so.. I am applying for grant money to travel.

I have been trying to contact Dr Phil and Oprah.. I have not had any luck so far.. I have his executive producer's email, but still nothing.. I am going to send a hard copy.. so I haven't given up.. however, I don't think that a one hour tv show is really the place to put this issue, but I want to find a "celebrity" champion of this cause.. ie.. It has to be someone "credible" but I am working on it!

To Lost1of3... when you go to the main parents forum page.. scroll down to the bottom and there is a search box for the forum.. you can search the word "documentary" or my user name...

If anyone is interested.. please contact me!

thanks and love to you all..


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Thank you for your blessings and thoughts I will think about them very seriously, and your kind words of encouragement. My trouble is in moving past all this and I know your right that I need to take control of my life back. God help and bless all of us.


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gina112 I feel so bad for you too. Each mother that finds her way to this site just makes me feel so badly, to know there are so many of us out there. I think it does help to read the posts and to hear that the mothers on this site were good moms to their children too.

I have talked with new people about my situation and was I surprised when they also shared their stories with me. I began working last year and one brave mom when I asked her about her family shared with me that 3 of her children had been estranged from her off and on for years. I hugged her and we were immediate friends. Then another woman at another time told me her story with her daughter. Again we had an immediate connection. Hiding this or being embarrassed is not helping. While I am not ready to go on TV and discuss it, it sure helps to be able to talk to or read these posts. As bad as I feel, I am more embarrassed for my son. Our friends, our priest, everyone thought so much of him and us as a family. They are shocked and so disappointed in him. That makes me feel terrible. He was such an amazing person. I don't think I will ever really know why he has chosen this. But if he does ever return, (and I believe he will), we need to all go to counseling. I don't know that without it, I would ever be able to trust him again. And reading these posts, hearing that children have come back only to leave and do it again. Well.. I can't go through this again, not that counseling would guarantee he would be healed and it wouldn't happen again it would be better than not going I think.

Hang in there, your in good company. I believe all the moms on this site were good moms. We are all perplexed.


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Dear Sarahsmom
Thank you for the courage and hard work to get this horrible epidemic out into the open. God Bless YOU! The more we can talk about it and learn...well...maybe we can find some answers.
I agree with you also estrangedgrammie - there is such a level of shame with all of this. However, I am grateful for this forum as it is easier to discuss with other moms/grandmoms that actually have experienced this horrible loss. Years ago (when it all began for us) I talked to a social worker who said..."oh give it time...kids will be kids...she'll come home when she starts missing that favourite blanket...or that special spot on the couch" ??? Fortunately now...years later I can laugh at that somewhat and think..."Holy Smokes!...if things were only that simple!!!" :)
Anyways...Good Luck Sarahsmom!!!!! You are in my prayers as you lead the way to educating everyone and helping us moms to heal. And maybe it will also hopefully be helpful to the ones who have left us behind.


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Harmoni I think you hit on the key component that is missing here-education. Only ones who have gone through this have the slightest idea what this is like. You can talk about feelings but if you have not experienced it it means nothing and that is why we need sarahsmom so badly-maybe we can help prevent one more mother or father from feeling this pain. maybe we can help open the lines of communication for other families before something like this happens. whatever it takes lets do it-lets support surveys and documentaries and each other. god bless us all


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Sarahsmom:
Excellent idea--producing a documentary on this subject. I didn't realize until I discovered this discussion forum (yesterday) that there were so many moms with the same issue I have. I have 2 sons (30s) that have become a bigger problem for me as adults than they were as teens. The youngest son didn't surprise me with his lack of respect and disconnecting from me, but the eldest son broke my heart. It came out of left field with no warning. When your child tells you he doesn't want you in his home and he won't give you rides to your grandson's ball games, it was as if he shot me in the heart. In fact, that wouldn't have hurt as badly. I am going through the grieving process and I am in the anger stage. It feels better than the hurt and crying stage. I don't and won't accept the blame nor his disrespect.

Moms unite and make a very concerted effort to be happy without your children in your lives. You certainly must have other people and activities that make you happy--if not, get them and move on. I have told my eldest son that what goes around, comes around. He will certainly feel the pain I have endured, but I am made of much sturdier stock than him.

I see this as another of life's lessons and challenges. I have endured many heartbreaks and this is just another. We are supposed to learn valuable lessons from these tragedies.

I have always had a dog and I have come to realize I should have stuck with dogs and forgotten having children. My dog thinks I am the greatest single person in the whole world 24/7 and he's always excited to see me, even if I have been in the garage for 2 minutes. Get a nice, cuddly pet so you will feel good about who you are!


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

dear donesonmom

Yes I see you are in the anger stage-that is ok. I too am going through an estrangement that came out of left field from my oldest son. The thing i keep going over and over is what can his young children think of him never mentioning his mother or calling or visiting. they are smart children-very smart. what is he role modeling for them. do they know i love them as musch as their other grandparents. Right now I alternate between anger and sadness-a deep painful sadness. I agree we need to unite and make this more visible to the public. Maybe it is too late for us but maybe too we can help one family before it is too late for them. My other children are stunned right now at this situation and I have received a lot of support from them but he is still my oldest-my first born-my child. I will not and cannot turn against him or forget him. I may have to keep this to myself but I still have hope things will work out. take care all and god bless.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I found this page in the midst of my tears. I thought I was alone in my grief. My story is way to long. I cant possible tell it all. I cant even talk about it without crying. I have been on a emotional roller coaster for 8 years now. I have five beautiful children 3 girls and 2 boys. I am estranged from two of my daughters for reasons I couldn't begin to understand as I see the rest of you are in the same boat. I have tried many things over these years to come to grips with my emotions and depression sets in on some days so bad I find it hard to breath. My two daughters have decided I am not good enough to be their Mother and have as much as told me so. Things was really bad for me. so much so I attempted to take my own life as I couldn't live with this pain anymore. The only thing that saved me was I had 3 other children who are also adults and a wonderful husband. They are the only light I have in my life. My two daughters came back briefly into my life. I welcomed them with open arms. The past was the past I had forgiven them and moved on. I thought we had worked through it all. Until one day about three months ago. The bridge I thought we had repaired blew up in my face once again. Now here I set crying again. Only this time My oldest daughter is no longer around to talk to. She moved with her boyfriend two states away. She does keep in touch. I am grateful she does. I wish the other two would. But I cant make them love me.. I am tired and I cant do it anymore.
I hope that one day they will change their minds or hearts or whatever it is that makes them the way they are. I can only hope I am alive to see it.
I cant say that I know what I would do . I don't even know if I want to speak to them at this point. I am so angry and hurt and I don't know which emotion is the strongest. Its to hard to try and figure out. It hurts my head!

I have a wonderful friend who tells me you can tell what kind of person someone is by the way they treat their Mother. That's so true.

My tears are the words my heart cant express.
God bless you all and I hope your stories turn out better than mine.

I don't know what the ending will turn out to be but I can only pray that its better days than today!

I hope to find peace within my own soul. as I am not sure what peace is anymore.......


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Dear breester

you probably have read the blogs here and know my story too. I can fully relate to you in every way. I am glad you found this too. It is just wounded hearts coming together in various stages of grief. I am glad you have the other children and a husband for support- too have other childrena and a husband and friends. I find I do not speak of this freely -none of my brothers and sisters know this or inlaws. The shame keeps this well hidden. Together we can find ways to cope and hope. take care and god bless


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Dear motherload

Thank you for your kind words..Yea I have read all the blogs here and each and everyone made me cry. I am grateful to find this page and hopefully find some sort of support and peace within.

I don't tend to talk about it much with my other children as I don't want to bring them down with me in my depression. I have talked about it with my Mother. Although its not much comfort she tells me She doesn't want to get involved. So basically she doesn't want to hear it. But she makes a point to tell me she invites one of my daughters to her house for holidays which I am not invited too..My sisters know the story and one of this is a great support as she has the same problems with both her daughters on again off again..Its a horrible cycle of hurt.
My husband just listens makes no opinions..My oldest daughter is my best friend through it all. Only she no longer lives close and when she calls She knows how much it hurts me that this is going on. I cant tell her the whole story of how I feel now I don't want our entire conversation to be so depressing..Its like I cant burden everyone with my emotions. I don't think anyone fully understand the deep love I have for them. They were and are the best part of who I was. Which I find that I am not the same person I once was.Someday's I wish I could just turn back the clock and do things differently. but I don't know what I would do that's so different. Its hard to figure out..


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Dear Friends, turning back the clock won't help they are who they are. None of us are to blame. I've once heard that you experience in the after life the pain you have put on other people, well, if this is true I feel sorry for all of them. I know we have souls because my children have hurt me to my very soul. I too have a good and loving husband, but I still would like to just disappear.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

hi pia67-i know what you mean when you say you would like to disappear. I think it is the shame and blame we feel and just want to hide from everyone. I am talking for myself now. Breester we sound a lot alike-my oldest daughter supports me 100% and unfortuneatley she does not live close either and i also feel like i am burdening her or my husband if i try to talk about this any more than i have. It is my cross to bear and i do not want their relationship with my son to be affected-does that make any sense to anyone. i would urge everyone here to check out the new forum by Sarahsmom on front page here-i went there and signed up-strictly for estrangement issues. It already feels like home. take care all and god bless


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new site for estrangement

http://estrangedstories.ning.com


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Motherlode,
Your grandchildren will eventually realize what has taken place, even though they are probably being given lies that aren't exactly in your favor. The truth always comes out, even if it takes years. Children aren't stupid. I keep wondering when my 11-yo granddaughter will start asking why grandma never goes to her brother's basketball games any longer or comes to their house--just a matter of time.

No one should be given control over your life and that is what your estranged son is doing. They know that you will dwell on your loss minute-by-minute of every day and they revel in that. I will not let my son have that kind of power. I have plenty of people in my life that do love and care for me, so don't waste all that energy with negative emotions over someone that obviously doesn't have the right time of day and isn't a very nice person. It is a grieving process, but bring all the light you can into your life and eventually this very sad and destructive estrangement will just be a bad memory. You can't make anyone like or love you, nor would you want to. Love yourself and the people that do care about you. At least we all have each other and know we are not alone.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

My head knows you are right donesonmom but my heart is in denial right now-i think i have to let my heart catch up to my head in its own time if that makes any sense to anyone. Yes we do have each other here and so good to know I am not alone in this. thanks for listening folks-take care and god bless


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

It's all very complicated.
Therapy is the answer.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I am so glad I found this site, now I know I am not alone...


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

There have not been a lot of additions to this posting in 2010, but when I found it it made me feel so much better. My daughter is borderline mentally ill. She does not want to have contact with my husband or me, we guess because she feels we are judging her. We truly try to not make negative comments, but we can see she feels uncomfortable around us. She sleeps until 10 am, works maybe two nights a week pouring drinks, and has painted her room dark purple. We just want to stay in touch to make sure she is okay.

When you meet her she seems beautiful and normal. She seems to change friends every few months because she has to lean on people for favors because she doesn't pay her bills. We don't feel she can organize her life to pay bills or make it to a regular job. She does not want to take medicine or see a doctor.

When I complained she didn't reply to our text for over two weeks, she told me its not that long. Now she won't reply at all. We are heartbroken. We truly have never abused her, but we probably have expected more from her in the past than she was able to give.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

croftoncrab,

I'm sorry to hear of your troubles with your daughter. Since you state that your daughter is bordeline mentally ill it sounds like she has been diagnosed. I wonder if you have heard of NAMI (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill)?

There may be a group in your area. I found it very helpful for me to meet other people with similar issues and problems with relatives with mental illness. I mention it because I do not know if you know about them and it may be of help to you to find support from other people with similar issues and problems.

It may not change your daughter, but it can be helpful to find others who can relate.

I hope this helps and I sincerely wish you the best. I know from experience that it is not easy dealing with a relative who has mental illness.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Thanks for your advice. In the past I lived in a small town and NAMI was not available. I'm going to check out a local chapter and also see what is available online. I would like to talk with others. Thank you.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

My 19 yr old son recently sold me out and went to live with his dad. A person who had not accepted my son or shown mych respect for since he started developing his own identity.

My ex took my daughter when she got mad at me because I caught her in bed w/her BF and alcohol and pot at age 17. She and I got into a fight and my ex husband said to let her stay with him for the wkend and she would be home by Sun. Years came and went and she is now 21. She moved out on her own for a while but he paid for her apt she shared w/her college friend. She lost her scholarship by failing ART and he made her move home again with him.

He lied to me about co parenting and it had been agreed on that she would live with me until graduation. He did not follow through and hurt me more than a person could hurt a mom by being an opportunist. He then went to Italy with some woman he must have been with during our marriage the wk after my daughter initially moved in w/him after she was busted in bed and smoking and drinking in my house. He never told me he was going until the day before and he left for 2 wks with her unsupervised.

He got married and made her a part of his new wife's wedding party and made my son his best man. Both were in bad taste IMHO.

When my son graduated from alt HS for bad grades, my ex cut off his CS the DAY he graduated leaving me with no way to pay for his food clothes and maintainence of his car. Its not like the kid had a job and I was unable to find a job despite my 24/7 efforts.

When my son saw the money dwindle, he ran to his dad and turned on me. One day I came into the room he was playing video games in at age 19 after graduation. It was my bday and he had not even mentioned it to me all day long. I got upset and he picked up his xbox and moved to his dadas house. Instead of co parenting and telling my son to fill out the job apps I gave him and to help me out once in a while amongst having respect for his mom - he said CMON move in with me your sis and my new wife.

My son who was so close to me for 19 long yrs - no longer spoke to me. He was embarrassed for having sold me out. He used to act like he hated his dad and felt unaccepted by him. He told me he would never abandon me like his sister and father did - but he had. I did anything I could to let my son know I love him. Gave him money, gas for his car, accepted his dreams and tried to help him get on the path for that, tried to help him get jobs, cared about his friends...I would text him every single day to tell him I loved him.

The boy never cut the grass nor helped me clean up. His room was a filthy dump and he would throw my cups and bowls out in the trash rather than wash them. I would complain but he would threaten to leave. He manipulated me.

Once day he told me his dad never told him he loved him. I found it odd. But I made sure I always did. I would ask him to spend time with me or try to hug him but he ended up blowing me off.

I reached out to his friends and gf when he asked me to as a mean of helpful mom support. I hugged him when he would cry. I tried my best to show how much I loved him. I gave him things I could not afford nor afford to give.

As the money ran out he talked more like his dad almost in mocking tones. His tattoos and gauged out ears he was so proud of - he started saying he was going to have it all removed because he wanted to be like his dad. I started to see him acting and talking like his dad. It was unnatural and sounded like a script - almost like he was trying on his personna as a joke. He saw the pain it caused me.

I knew that if I said one thing wrong he would leave.

Well I did. It was my bday and he was playing xbox all day. Dishes in the sink. Lawn uncut. Me giving him money for gas and food.

Forget the fact that everytime my daughter said she would come over she would either not show up or be hours late. Once here she would pick a fight over anything she could find. And then not speak to me for months on end. She did not call me mothers day christmas NYs or my bday.

I fee like a useless waste of space. Counseling helped for the hour I went. But the soft curls, the jokes, belly laughs...the days I knew these kids are all erased and painful to remember now. It feels like they have died. I had a young boy I met at his age of 16 that came into my shop. He would come by and hang out there because his own mom was having major problems. I treated like my own. He was killed at age 20, one wk b4 his 21 bday. The loss of him rocked my world. I have to say that my own bio kids not speaking to me - living with their dad and being raised by a woman who has never had kids or ever been married makes me literally sick to my stomach.

I feel like I was a useless vessel with no value or rights because I stayed at home. The economy is no help and I have no job despite over hundreds of applications I sent out.

I miss my kids and I tried so hard to be a good mom. I hate that they live with him and he loves that it pains me. He calls me the C word when I get upset and cry to him about it. He tells me to suck it up and its too Fing bad.

I feel so worthless and unloved. The loss of them is agony. AGONY. I am losing my house. I have lost my kids. I dont know that death is the worst thing that could happen to a person

I wake up every night drenched in sweat that my kids have left and stand before me screaming at me saying they have a new mom...while my ex laughs at me. I wake up and cant tell the difference between the nightmare and reality

I am so grief stricken and I reached out to my mom but she is an alcoholic who after a couple times, screamed at me to get over it and not to call unless it was good news.

I dont have anyone to turn to. NO ONE UNDERSTANDS the agony we moms go through. People expect me to forget it and move on - and I cant. Why dont they understand? WHY?

It took me four months to be able to go into my daughter's room. I cried the entire time I cleaned it out.

I have yet to open my sons room and doubt I can as I was so close to him...or so I thought. How can he simply turn off his mother like he hates me? How can he sleep?

I feel sick all of the time and I am depressed 24/7. I cant find a reason to try anymore because I dont care about myself. Seems no one else does. What is the point?

I found this haunting song by shinedown that is accurate but hard to listen to without wanting to panic and run...run to I dont know where...and some of it refers to getting high which makes it odd and is in no way applicable to my son and I...but the rest does.

SOmeone please tell me why I should hang on.. Most people have family and friends and I have tried but I am shunned.

Title: Shinedown - The Crow And The Butterfly lyrics

Artist: Shinedown Lyrics

Visitors: 2362 visitors have hited The Crow And The Butterfly Lyrics since June 03, 2010.
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Send "The Crow And The Butterfly" Ringtone to Cell

I painted your room at midnight
So I know that yesterday was over
I put all your books on the top shelf
Even the one with the four-leafed clover
Man I'm getting older

I took all your pictures off the wall
And I wrapped them in a newspaper blanket
And i havent slept in what seems like a century
And now i can barely breathe

Just like the crow chasing the butterfly
Dandelions lost in the summer sky
Cos when you and I
Were getting high as outer space
I never thought you would slip away
I guess I was just a little too late

Your words still serinate me
And your alabies, they wont let me sleep
And I never heard such a haunting melody
And now it is killing me
You know I can barely breathe

Just like the crow chasing the butterfly
Dandelions lost in the summer sky
Cos when you and I
Were getting high as outer space
I never thought that you would slip away
I guess I was just a little too late
I was just a little too late

[ mini guitar solo (= ]

Just like the crow chasing the butterfly
Dandelions lost in the summer sky
Cos when you and I
Were getting high as outer space
I never thought you would slip away

Like the crow chasing the butterfly
Dandelions lost in the summer sky
Because when you and I
Were getting high as outer space
I never thought you would slip away
I guess I was just a little too late
Yeah I was just a little too late
I was just a little too, a little too late
I guess I was just a little too late


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

My daughters are 17 and 20. My oldest talks to me and will hang out sometimes, but there have been times when she won't speak to me, wasn't even invited to her HS graduation (her father paid for her to move out on her own at 18 because she didn't want to follow my rules)
My youngest is completely breaking my heart !! She lives with her father (very long story) after me raising her on my own for 15 years with very little involvement from her father. She won't visit me, hardly talks to me and just recently for no reason stopped even texting me. I asked why, she says simply...don't worry about it.
I WAS so close to my kids growing up, they were my world !! I was a good mom. Dad caused interference that made it hard for me to have any rules for them and they rebelled as teens. Now he (the absent one for 15 years) is the hero.

I JUST WANT TO KNOW HOW TO STOP THE PAIN, THE TEARS, THE DEPRESSION ?? I can't continue to live in this state. My family and friends are tired of my whining and think I should "just move on" . I can't find joy, I can't stop thinking about her. I can't afford counseling. She has a better relationship with her EX step mother (also a small part of her life) then with me. I've sought comfort in friends, family, church, exercise. HOW HOW HOW HOW, DO I JUST MOVE ON ????? Any suggestions ??


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I have 3 adult children 35, 33 and 28. My 28 year old son is wonderful and I truly treasure that.I am at a place of complete despair and brokeness over the poor treatment from my 35 yr old daughter, 33 year old son, 33 year old daughter in law and 28 year old daughter in law of complete disrespect and injustice towards me. My daughter and daughters-in-law are the worst. I am 13 years recovered alcoholic with several relapse 4 years ago with a suicide attempt due situations beyond my control. At that time I was 8 years sober. M job was cut due to economy. I ran a four star restaurant and was married to it and loved it. It replaced my emptiness from my 2 older children I started drinking when my daughter left for college and I was dealing with an abusive husband. The bioloical absent from parenting dad of my 28 year old son.My 2 oldests' dad died suddenly of a heart attack @ 33.They were 5 and 3. He was also an abusive man, having sexual relations with 2 of my sisters, but I didn't find that out until he was passed 10 years later. For some reason they felt that they should reveal this to me @ that time.Go figure that. I raised my children with love and nurturing, I was such a good loving mom that their friends wished that I could be their mom.We did fun and exploring lots together. I also have a 28 year old son, by my second marriage. He IS loving and respectful and corresponds aften and includes me in his life. I do hold on to that as a treasure.He was the one @ home during my active addiction. Funny how he is the loving child. He understands.Although I don't understand why his wife treats me extreme disrepect."Presently I am single never remarried after the divorce. I lost my home on the lake and most everything in it due the divorce resulting in a foreclosure. I also lost my last baby @ 6mo term. The beginning of the downward spiral of addiction..I could go on and on about so many things. I am a christian woman and have wonderful relationships with my church family. But this does not ease my painfrom the estrangment from my family. I am a self taught artist and do not have any commissions. I suppose due to the area I live in. I survive financially on disability which I rec'd 4 years ago due to major back surgury years ago. My 33 tr old son and his wife did visit me and are supportive of my art work and he does respond to my emails often. He is very kind to me. But just like he is with every one. He does try but doesn't want to get in the middle if his wife's disrespect and his sister poor treatment. He turns away from it leaving me to fend for myself which is worse when I speak up for myself. I make ends meet. My son went to Dartmouth, I advocated for him during school years taking him to colby collrege for classes to keep him going with his needs. He went MIT grad and now is a trader in Pa very successful, of course I am very proud of him. He is married and his wife's behavior towards me is atrocious. She is expecting my two of my new grand babies in June ~ probably won't include me very much. My 28 year old and wife ( my first)granddaughter due any day.The mom treats me with such disrespect I don't know what will happen. My 35 year old daughter is divorced. A lawyer in Pa.She went to Holy Cross and then Northwestern Law which I helped with her education to get there.I don't discuss my financial situation with them, although I think they are aware of it. But not how bad it is. They are very generous to me for a thanksgiving visit by paying for a flight there. But I don't understand why when I am there my son . But the girls are extremely disrespectful, ignoring me except to correct what I contribute or make fun of my conversation which they don't include me at all. Exception of my son, it feels like he is doing his duty, the right thing to do to invite me for a holiday. I keep the communication going as best I can. I email and call occasionally, they rarely respond.
I bake and send to them I do get a thank you by email. No hi mom, or love. If I don't contact them there is no communication.My addiction started when I lost my last child. A 6 mos term baby, with out any support from husband, When my daughter went to college I dealt with a huge separation anxiety from my loss, My self medicating with alcohol worsened as my 2 olderst went college and my husbands abuse became worse. I do not have any other family. due to death and also abuse from the sisters who have affairs with my deceased husband.My story is sooo long I am sorry to go on and on BUT i AM SO ALONE IN THIS PAIN. My many friends have no idea of how bad things are. They say, you are always so positive and happy. I was also became homeless for 2 years with no communication from my children. They were angry at me because I caused this. Little do they know my addition and consequenses were because I needed them. I don't understand their poor treatment. What happened to their compassion and the loving children that I raised. They continue to punish me for not being stronger with no understanding or interest of my present recovery or relapsed. Which is when all of this complete estrangement happened. This continues even with apologies and constant doing and doing and keeping my mouth shut over all of their treatment. I will end with saying thank you for allowing me to express this. And am happy to know that other women endure this suffering.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

You all are pathetic. Me, me, I, I, me, me. Did you ever stop to think that maybe these ungrateful, hurtful estranged children of yours were injured in some way, and maybe if you weren't so selfish and self-absorbed, they might be able to stand you. Take the blame for your actions and stop whining.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

Autonomy is developed....and development takes growing....many adult children would rather spend their energy BLAMING their paretns rather than GROWING as an adult and productive person.

poor me-I doubt very seriously if you have ever had a child, raised him...watched him grow....supported him emotionally and financially-only to have him call you every name in the book and blame you for everything going wrong in his life.

My 24 yr old son uses every mistake I ever made against me....yet says he has "changed" so he doesn't want to discuss all the lies, ugly behavior, and name calling he was responsible for....because he is "changed".

I think the problem is this: For an adult child-no one is supposed to refer to their mistakes that occured before last Monday....
For the parent...there is no "statute of limitations:....they can blame us for anything and everything no matter how long ago it occured.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

@angel

"My 24 yr old son uses every mistake I ever made against me....yet says he has "changed" so he doesn't want to discuss all the lies, ugly behavior, and name calling he was responsible for....because he is "changed"."

"For an adult child-no one is supposed to refer to their mistakes that occured before last Monday.... "

Why do you feel the need to "discuss" or "refer to" your 24 year old son's mistakes in the first place? Offer your unconditional love without judgment and maybe your relationship could turn around. You are still the parent, and it's not your son's job to fix what's wrong with you any more than it's your job to point out what's wrong with him. Sounds to me like you're more interested in being right than giving love and support to your son.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I am a 38-year-old male that is not estranged from my mother. However, we are close. I've read through every one of these messages, and most of you ladies sound like my mother. I read a lot of guilt and hurt, for which I am sorry. From my perspective, as the adult son in all of this, perhaps you should be taking inventory and asking yourself, 'why does my son/daughter not want to see me?'. My family is dysfunctional on my mom and dad's side...mental illness leading to drug use, etc. I have chosen a different path, a path that led me to get my engineering degree, to marry a successful educated woman and we have a beautiful daughter, and to strive for 'more' in life. My mom and dad no NOTHING excpect for control and manipulation....I still get 'guilted' and 'lectured' in my late 30s. My parents disrespect how my wife and I raise our daughter...repeatedly...so I've had enough of the drama and stress. I see my mother (and father) enough to ensure my daugher knows them. So like I said, PLEASE take a look in the mirror before assuming it's ALL your kids fault. Happy Mother's Day, ladies.


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RE: mothers estranged from adult children

I am a mother of two children, a son 25 and a daughter 19. My son estranged himself from me 5 years ago without any reason and my daughter joined him 8 months ago. Until my daughter left, she thought my son's estrangement to be destructive and hurtful for all of us as a family. But all that changed when we had an argument regarding her lifestyle choice where she was endangering her health. As she knew the hurt and grief I had experienced due to the loss of my son, she chose to do the same as punishment.
I believe when children estrange themselves from their parents without any reason and choose silence as the answer to our questions? It is a cowardly act on their behalf, and the easy way out. To discuss and resolve takes great commitment and courage from both the child and the parent in facing the problems and individual pain,but if the child is not willing, it cannot work. It is the most sadistic rejection of all. And the same can be said of parents rejecting their children. Just a sadistic cowardly act. The greatest loss of all and all so futile in this life that is so very short and fleeting.


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