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RE: mothers estranged from adult children (Follow-Up #140)

posted by: breester00 on 01.16.2009 at 11:24 am in Parents Forum

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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clipped on: 01.17.2009 at 12:45 am    last updated on: 01.17.2009 at 12:45 am

For those whose adult children are estranged....

posted by: carinjuniperus on 04.17.2008 at 04:46 pm in Parents Forum

Dear friends and fellow parents.

I'm glad to find your letters here. This situation is so new to me. Abandoned by my dear daughter, 26 years old, just a few months ago, I'm in pain and need your comfort, and finding that other parents experienced this is a comfort. Thank you for all the letters you gave here.

I absolutely have not got the answers, and never thought that this situation was developing.

I divorced her father when she was 10 years old. I belived it went well. We put a lot of effort in the project, that she should not feel she lacked anything. Today my aunt tells me that there might have been too much over-compensation. Today I see that my daughter was spoiled.

She did her schoolwork, but nothing more than just managed. Much more interested in clothes, friends shopping, parties. When I was young in the 70'ies, we did nothing but schoolwork, and of course we youngsters worked to earn our own money too. My daughter, she did not work to earn her own money, we let her join camps for horseback riding with her friends. No housework. No lawnmoving.

I can see now how I let my daughter down.

As I look back now, I see the real warnings began 8 years ago, shortly after I married my second husband. My daughter insulted me and abused me verbally when she came to visit me in my own home. I kept my mouth shut in theese situations, so sure that this had to be something she would see her self, that she had to mature and stop such behavior.

I'm so sorry to say, during theese years I stopped looking forward to see her. My self-esteem as her mother decreased during those years, I got a nasty feeling that I did not deserve a loving daughter.

So finally, summer 2007 it seemed to be better, we spent a lovely evening together. I was happy and finally looking forward to the future. Very very happy when she invited me to stay in her home for Christmas 2007. But it all went wrong again, she abused me verbally, really hurt me. I irritated her so extremely by being gratefull, I think. About 10 days after Christmas she send a letter. Never contact me again.

Now 3 months later, still I'm not really able to believe this has happened. Garbaged her mother.

Never let youngsters get away with any kind of bad behavior so that they feel ashamed of themselves.

I think that is a lesson for me. I should have never let her get away with it, not even the first attempt when she was 20. Now I see why 'Setting Boundaries' is a serious issue in the books about estranged adult children.

I really meant well, because she turned 18, I remember I thought 'She is an adult now, she is a young woman now, and must be respected as such'

Here in my country in Europe where I live, nobody talks about this grand failure that a parent is garbaged by an adult child. None of the books I buy in english from the USA are translated. It is a silent sign how shamefull we feel about it. We cannot speak about it.

My question to night is the following worry:

I read about the mending of estrangement, and I see that the first issue is to honestly and whole heartedly wish to be connected again with the child who estranges herself. But in my heart I feel too much anger I think. I believe that I cannot just receive her in my open arms if she suddenly should stand on my doorstep. Is this normal? Did any of you experience such an odd feeling of 'too early to take her back'? Will time help? Maybe I too need time with out her?

Dear friend, who read this long letter from a brokenhearted mother, I thank you for your attention.

Maybe I should mention that estrangement is running in my family and in the extended, so many examples that it is the tradition.

Please email me if you like, I would be happy to have a correspondance, I am lonely in this situation. I cannot find a support group here, we do not even have a word for 'estrangement' in the language.

Also in times of pain it can be very good to chat about other subjects so please feel free to tell about your country, the scenery at the place you live and people and life etc etc. I will answer all emails.

My word for survival is Mothers-Forever-No-Matter-What
Love from Carin

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clipped on: 01.16.2009 at 11:13 am    last updated on: 01.16.2009 at 11:13 am

RE: potential estranged daughter (Follow-Up #16)

posted by: motherlode on 01.16.2009 at 11:07 am in Parents Forum

hi estranged grammie

i loved what you had to say and quote today. There is a reason we were all drawn here and in this high tech world we can help each other with words of experience and knowledge or just listen. When this first happened to me at xmas 2008 i never thought i could be this at peace with my loss. It has been a roller coaster for the last 25 days but now i feel a little bit more grounded. a lot of it has to do with places like this and support of my other kids. there was a person-medusa-that was coming here but now have not heard anything for over a week-another abandonment it feels like. Hopefully she is alright and I am getting stronger every day as well. take care all and god bless

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clipped on: 01.16.2009 at 11:07 am    last updated on: 01.16.2009 at 11:08 am

RE: potential estranged daughter (Follow-Up #15)

posted by: estrangedgrammie on 01.16.2009 at 08:14 am in Parents Forum

"Many times becoming estranged from your mom only makes you feel worse. It doesn't ever go away. You will think of her with painful remorse and longing at every birthday party, every Christmas and many days when you wish that you could just talk."

You are so on-the-mark with that statement, Believer.

Sarahsmom posted an article sometime ago in which it was written:

"But many effects of severing the relationship are not always obvious.

The relationship will continue in some form, even after the rift.

''You can only be physically estranged from your parents; you can't feel psychologically free from them,'' said Dr. Eleanor Mallach Bromberg, an associate professor in the school of social work at Hunter College in Manhattan.

''We battle with them in our minds even after they're dead,'' Dr. Bromberg said. ''That's the paradox for these people. They spend so much of their time avoiding things that remind them of their parents that they become even more involved psychologically with their parents.'' '

The same article also said:

"The barrier between grandchildren and grandparents that comes with such estrangements worries some psychologists. They say parents should pay close attention to the messages they are sending their own children.

''Grandchildren learn how to treat their parents by the ways in which they see their parents treat the grandparents,'' said Dr. Matti Gershenfeld, an adjunct professor of psychoeducational processes at Temple University in Philadelphia. She also teaches workshops on being an adult child and being the parent of an adult.

''If you're estranged from your parents, the odds are your children will become estranged from you once they become adults,'' Dr. Gershenfeld said. ''That's the model they're learning.''

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clipped on: 01.16.2009 at 10:59 am    last updated on: 01.16.2009 at 10:59 am

RE: potential estranged daughter (Follow-Up #14)

posted by: motherlode on 01.12.2009 at 11:57 pm in Parents Forum

As a newly estranged mother I too agree that unless there is physical or sexual abuse estrangement should be the last resort. arms length relationship should be an option until some boundries are established. estrangement is like cutting off a limb-painful and shocking. I am still in shock and was only told he was taking a break from me-i have not seen him for 14 months and he still needs more time. i am in my 60's-how much more time do i have? he has 2 beautiful girls i want them to know i love them and miss them. i want him to be happy as well. relationships can be complicated i guess. 2 years ago i found my biological mother and 8 siblings. i am going slow with her and she is in her 80's but very healthy and very sharp minded. my expectations of her were not realistic and i had to take a step back. she finally sent me a card this xmas and signed it-love mom. it meant the world to me. i wrote to her and thanked her and told her how those two words affected me. she wrote back and agian signed-love mom. at age 60 u would think this is a bit silly of me to get so excited but my adopted mother never told me she loved me and i always felt so empty-now i feel pretty darn good-except for the son part. now i have gone on too long-take care all

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clipped on: 01.16.2009 at 10:58 am    last updated on: 01.16.2009 at 10:58 am

RE: New and Desperate (Follow-Up #27)

posted by: motherlode on 01.10.2009 at 02:37 am in Parents Forum

I want to share an experience I had today with a lady I know casually. I was at a gathering today and at the intermission we went outside together. I asked her how many children she has-she hesitated and said hmmmm-4. She is the same age as me. I asked her are you close to all of them? Again she hesitated and said-not really. She said she had been verbally abused by her husband -their father-and they picked up on that and now they treat her with sarcasm and disrespect. I have read here and other forums that estrangement is more widespread than realized by society. I found it interesting to hear this from her. Unfortunately I must admit I was not honest with her when she asked me if I was close to all my children. I wish I was as open as her but just not quite ready. I told her I had a friend who was going through something similar to her situation. She probably saw through that excuse but did not pressure me-thank goodness. Here is where I can be myself without fear of judgement. One day I will share with her but not just yet. Thanks for listening.

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clipped on: 01.10.2009 at 02:37 am    last updated on: 01.10.2009 at 02:37 am

RE: handholding for motherlode and others in same situation (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: motherlode on 01.09.2009 at 12:46 am in Parents Forum

Hi Liz

I look forward to your jewels of wisdom daily. I received a beautiful e-mail from my oldest daughter today and taht lifted my spirits higher than the moon. I told my friend today it feels like I am on a roller coaster-i hate roller coasters-i am up and down at the strangest times. but now i am up and may even get to sleep without crying tonight-crossed fingers. You have a way with words for sure and just know what i need to to hear to feel a bit better. If you lived in my city we would probably be friends. I also like to hear from the other people here as well. Is it only mothers here or is there ever any fathers? I guess mothers are the main nurturers and if there is a disconnect it falls on our shoulders. Sleep well everyone and know there are others in similar situations trying desperately to make some sense of things. Be strong and take care all.

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clipped on: 01.09.2009 at 12:46 am    last updated on: 01.09.2009 at 12:46 am

RE: mothers estranged from adult children (Follow-Up #135)

posted by: motherlode on 01.08.2009 at 11:01 am in Parents Forum

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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clipped on: 01.08.2009 at 11:02 am    last updated on: 01.08.2009 at 11:02 am

RE: Estranged Adult children (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: motherlode on 01.05.2009 at 03:52 am in Parents Forum

hi everyone-just a short note to thank all of you for being here for me. it is such a lonely feeling trying to deal with this loss-and it is a loss. the shame sometimes washes over me like a tidal wave. i have to take a deep breath-the shame almost smothers me. for now i will allow myself to feel whatever i have to-this is a grieving-i know i have to get my self together soon as possible. one day i hope to report to you taht i am ok-tonight i am not ok. god bless you all

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clipped on: 01.05.2009 at 03:52 am    last updated on: 01.05.2009 at 03:53 am

RE: Estranged Adult children (Follow-Up #6)

posted by: motherlode on 12.31.2008 at 01:01 am in Parents Forum

Thank you everyone for your support-i did hear from him today by e-mail. he says he wants to be left alone and he does not feel close to me. i feel like dying right now-like a knife through my heart. He said it was not anything i had done or said lately but an accumalation of the past years. as i said i have made many mistakes-married 4 times-and many other poor decisions. never alcohol or drugs were involved in my life at any time. whatever i did was with a clear mind so no excuses. i was adopted by alcoholic parents-abused into my teen years-married at 17 and he was the first of 6 children. i had no clue how to be a good parent but tried what i thought was my best-obviously it was not. now i am feeling sorry for myself but after his e-mail today this is how i am feeling-hopefully tomorrow will be better. take care all

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clipped on: 01.05.2009 at 03:48 am    last updated on: 01.05.2009 at 03:48 am

Estranged Adult children

posted by: motherlode on 12.28.2008 at 02:09 am in Parents Forum

I am raw with pain right now. My adult son who lives thousands of miles away from me arrived in my home town last week with his wife and children- he will be here for only a week and i have not heard from him once-i left 2 messages where they are staying but no response. at this point it looks like he does not want me n his life for some reason-i know i have made a thousand mistakes or more as a single parent but i always meant the best for the family. i went to college and worked full time so not much quality time with the kids. then they are grown and gone just when i do have the time for them. gee i sound selfish-maybe that is what he sees now. i just miss him and my heart is breaking-i miss my grandkids-have not seen them for over a year. it feels like someone has died-it hurts so darn much-how do i say goodbye?

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clipped on: 01.05.2009 at 03:47 am    last updated on: 01.05.2009 at 03:47 am

RE: For those whose adult children are estranged.... (Follow-Up #17)

posted by: aboutelizabeth on 12.31.2008 at 02:34 pm in Parents Forum

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, Christmas is especially hard. 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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clipped on: 01.05.2009 at 03:45 am    last updated on: 01.05.2009 at 03:45 am

RE: Continuing thread: For mothers estranged from their adult chi (Follow-Up #96)

posted by: motherlode on 01.03.2009 at 01:00 am in Parents Forum

I see a bit of me and my situation in every blog here. Last week-yes xmas-my son told me he wants to take a break from me as he does not feel close to me. i have been leaving messages for him for the past year-not a lot of messages but holidays and birthdays and such-he never returns the message. he wants me to leave him alone-he says nothing i have done but an accumulation of things over the years. i am 61 and he is 44. at first i was devastated but as time goes on i am mad. he says he does not owe me any explanation. i beg to differ-i brought him into this world-with his dad-at least he owes me an explanation. he is also estranged from 2 of his brothers. i wish him the best and if he needs me to be out of his life then so be it-not as though i have much choice in the matter. i will just love and cherish my other 5 children even more. but there will always be a hole in my heart for him-my first born. thanks for listening to my ramblings. at least i have this to come to.

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clipped on: 01.05.2009 at 03:43 am    last updated on: 01.05.2009 at 03:43 am

RE: mothers estranged from adult children (Follow-Up #122)

posted by: motherlode on 01.04.2009 at 01:54 am in Parents Forum

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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clipped on: 01.05.2009 at 03:40 am    last updated on: 01.05.2009 at 03:41 am

RE: mothers estranged from adult children (Follow-Up #113)

posted by: motherlode on 12.31.2008 at 01:06 am in Parents Forum

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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clipped on: 01.05.2009 at 03:39 am    last updated on: 01.05.2009 at 03:40 am

RE: mothers estranged from adult children (Follow-Up #106)

posted by: motherlode on 12.30.2008 at 12:23 am in Parents Forum

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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clipped on: 01.05.2009 at 03:38 am    last updated on: 01.05.2009 at 03:39 am

RE: mothers estranged from adult children (Follow-Up #104)

posted by: motherlode on 12.29.2008 at 04:15 am in Parents Forum

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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clipped on: 01.05.2009 at 03:36 am    last updated on: 01.05.2009 at 03:36 am