The Book

parents of estranged adult children352 pages
May, 2016
ISBN-13: 978-0997352207
ISBN-10: 0997352205

In this new book for parents of estranged adult children—Done With The Crying: Help and Healing for Mothers of Estranged Adult Children—Sheri McGregor, M.A., helps parents break free from emotional pain—and move forward in their own lives.

As a loving mother to whom the unthinkable happened, McGregor knows the horrible shock that wrings a parent dry, triggers denial, blame, anger, and shame. With empathy and understanding, as well as tools, the latest research, and insight from more than 9,000 parents of estranged adult children, McGregor helps parents of estranged adults plan ahead, prepare for emotional triggers, and prevail over setbacks and pain.

You can be happy again. In a calm yet authoritative voice, and with exercises derived from her work as a life coach and her own recovery, McGregor helps mothers who did their best to come to terms with their estranged adult child’s choices, and regain their health and happiness.

To fathers of estranged adult childrenthis book can help you, too. “Ninety-three percent of the parents who answer my survey at RejectedParents.Net are mothers,” says Sheri McGregor. “That’s why the title is directed at them. But many of the book’s examples are from couples, and include the experiences of fathers. Some passages directly highlight men’s reactions, including my husband’s. The principles presented are relevant to fathers, and the strategies for coping can be used by anyone.” Find more for fathers here.

In this encouraging and comprehensive book for parents of estranged adult children, McGregor fully covers the phenomenon of estranged adults from families who never expected a son or daughter to cut ties and walk away.

Nine in-depth chapters provide dozens of inspiring examples from among the thousands of parents of estranged adult children. Gain understanding and practical help from a mother who knows the pain of this devastating loss with all its uncertainty and heartache. Hope can remain, but you don’t have to stay stalled, forever waiting. You can move past the disbelief and distress. Take charge. Reclaim yourself and your life—only maybe even better.

Available through popular booksellers. Ask your local bookstore to order this book for parents of estranged adult children for you. Any bookstore can order it for you, since it is printed and made available through a major distributor.

Or order online at Walmart, Barnes and Noble, Book Depository, You can also get it at Amazon online. It’s available through Amazon’s foreign country sites as well (India, Italy, France, Japan, etc). Kindle lovers, your version will be available very soon.

Not in the U.S.? — you can still get the book at Amazo’s foreign country sites. You can also ask your local bookstore to order the book. Or try: (Australia)

Booktopia (Australia)

Open Trolley (Singapore)

  • What people are saying about the book: “Thank you for Done With The Crying: Help and Healing for Mothers of Estranged Adult Children. The book is a must read for parents of estranged adult children and mental health professionals working with these families. Sheri McGregor’s work is a breath of fresh air offering a new perspective and providing support, encouragement, resources, and compassion to good parents that have found themselves in an unimaginable situation. ” —-Maritza Parks, LMHC, Inspired Journey Counseling
  • “While Mothers are mentioned on the cover, dads, this is for you too! Done with the Crying is for any (and all) family member who wants to heal and move forward. This wonderful book will help you see how you can hold your chin up high, dry your eyes, and get on with your life.”                                                                                  —Joi Sigers, Self Help
  • Done With the Crying also provides much time for reflection, for taking time to think about ones life and to read the stories of other women who are going through a similar situation. The book is easy to read, and provides much support and insight in a gentle and understanding way.                     —Hennie Weiss, M.A., Metapsychology Online Reviews
  • This is my best resource to assist families whose adult children have rejected them. In my role as a family life educator, I work with those affected by a loved one’s mental illness, and the sad phenomenon of estrangement is rampant. I’ve searched for resources and education, but there is precious little available to help rejected parents move forward.
    It did not take me many pages in to see the value for my work, and I often recommend this compassionately written book to parents and families who are in so much pain.
    —Mara J. Briere, MA CFLE, President and Founder, Grow a Strong Family, Inc.
  • Reviews at

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30 thoughts on “The Book

  1. Thom Ogden

    I have a friend who estranged and is legally blind, do you have any plans to produce an audio version of this book or an electronic format she can read on a kindle or computer?

    1. rparents Post author

      Hi Thom,
      Yes–I hope to have both an electronic and an audio version. I will post an announcement when either comes out. Unfortunately, no release date yet.


  2. rparents Post author

    Hi Jo,
    There are a couple of Australian online stores to get the book. You can probably call a brick and mortar store, and they could order it and get it in for you). To order direct, here is one link for online Australian ordering: —

    Thank you for your interest (And I am so sorry that estrangement is happening in your life, and that you’re feeling so down. There is a good life to live even beyond estrangement, or with it.).

    Sheri McGregor

  3. Karen

    I am 71. My estranged daughter is 49. She has done this before for periods of up to two years, and each time I practically begged for her to return to the family. This time I told her I would no longer tolerate the disrespect and cruelty and I fought back when she kicked me to the curb again. She is never wrong and I knew deep down that this was the end. I don’ t have to tell you about the pain. I didn’ t think I would survive this time. Still don’ t. I will be reading your book soon.

    1. Martine O.

      Dear Karen,
      I just read this and my heart turns over and breaks again. I am 72 and my youngest daughter is never wrong either. I have allowed her to drive me to the brink when I just wanted to get out of this life because I felt like such a failure and more. I wish I could connect with you and get your views. Be blessed Karen and know you just touched someone deeply with your comments ❤

    2. GhostedMom


      I am in the same boat, my daughter is estranged but has bounced back and forth so many times over the years that I just can’t handle the criticism and rejection any more. I did find reading the book and doing the exercises very helpful. I have realized I am in control of what happens on MY end of the deal. I can let her dictate to me the terms of the relationship OR I can stand up for myself. She always has demanded that I must meet her desires and expectations but she has consistently treated me in cruel and disrespectful ways.

      I have decided that if she seeks any future “reconciliations” I will insist on my expectations of respect and that she sincerely chooses to work with me to have a mature relationship built on mutual respect.
      All that said, unless she is willing to make some serious changes I can’t imagine this happening.

      Is it painful, of course. But after reading the book I don’t feel guilty about my expectations anymore, I don’t feel like I am being unreasonable to expect her to treat me with respect. I have 4 other children who do not make these demands on me or if we have a disagreement are willing to talk it through with me. It i not fair to them to get caught in our turmoil anymore. The Turmoil ends with me.

      Be brave, Love yourself, forgive yourself if you have made mistakes ( I have) and focus on the gifts you have in your life now. I rest in the hope that if we are not reunited in this life we will be in the next.

  4. Sue

    I too am 71. My daughter is 43. In October it will be 3 years since she poured out her anger at her father and me and cut off all access to her and our only grandson, who is now 5. I am in therapy for what is called “Complicated Grief”. It is helpful and I have good times but the pain and tears always return. Years of introspection don’t uncover anything but a smart, happy self assured young woman who is a successful and caring adult and mother. Family was sacred to us and we parented with intelligence and love. We too asked for respect in the future and made it clear our love was always there. I still cannot accept that such a thing could happen to us. We do have one other child who is loving and caring. No one in our extended family ever mentions it, even though it is the ‘elephant in the room’.

  5. SunflowersDay

    I am 68. My daughter is 44. I too felt like “death” when my daughter became estranged on May 8th of this year, Mother’s Day!! I started reading Sheri’s book and it has been like a light in the total darkness for me! I can feel my strength coming back and I read each and every line and do all the exercises in the book. I am learning so much about myself.
    Please, get the book. Join the forum. You deserve to live a full life! It is possible!

  6. Helen

    Hi Sheri
    I am a 59 year old lady in New Zealand and my 30 year old daughter has dropped me from her life. I will be getting your book because you have summed up so succinctly what I’m feeling.
    My own mother was my rock and best friend and I miss her sorely, she passed away 2 Years ago and often held me when I broke my heart about my daughter.
    I worry that my daughter is hurting too and that this is such a waste of our lives.
    Thank you all for sharing

    1. rparents Post author

      Hi Helen. Your note struck a chord. When you read the first few pages of my book, you will learn a little about my mom. She’s been gone for 24 years. I loved her a lot!! I’m sorry you have lost yours…and yes, it would be nice to just have a mom’s hug. I also understand your feelings about your daughter … your worries. I hope you will find my book helpful as you move forward. Hugs, Sheri

    2. Carren

      You could be me. I am 59, also in NZ with a 30 year old estranged daughter. She is expected first baby in January and I am falling apart with sadness and grief. My heart is so broken.

  7. Christine

    Sheri, I just got your book, and to be honest was hoping I didn’t need to read it. Yesterday was my daughter’s birthday and I sent her a card and 2 texts telling her I loved her. I never received a response. My younger daughter pleaded with her to come to her senses and be a family again and stop blaming me. My ED, however, continues to find negative things about me. She is going to a therapist and I feel I’m the scapegoat. Her unhappiness probably isn’t really about me, she just can’t face the truth. Sigh. Thanks for writing your book-

    1. rparents Post author

      I’m sorry Christine. That must have been a big disappointment (to put it lightly). I hope you will find the book helpful … and taking care of yourself doesn’t mean you give up hope. Hug your other daughter! I bet she misses her sister too. – Take good care of yourself , Christine. Hugs!

  8. Mary Lynn

    I just ordered the book on Amazon tonight. I am greatly looking forward to reading it. I am estranged from 2 of my 3 children since a divorce…daughters ages 18 & 20. I have not seen them in over 3 years. They have rejected all of my attempts at reconciliation. The pain and anguish never go away. It has been a nightmare. I fear that my 14 year old son will eventually do the same. I feel like the only parent going through this. It’s incredibly lonely. Mary Lynn

    1. Diane

      Hi Mary. I am also estranged from my children after divorcing their narcissistic father. He has convinced him that he is the victim. What’s more is that they think they should continue on with this mistreatment. I choose distance instead of disrespect.

  9. A heartbroken mother

    This book was recommended by a social worker.It is a godsend. It has helped clarify my own feelings and hopefully strengthen my ability to cope with this nightmare. This is a group no one ever dreamed they would belong to. I know we have done everything possible but we can’t wallow in failure anymore.

    1. rparents Post author

      A heartbroken mother, Thank you for your kind words about the book. I’m sorry you have the need for it, but I am also grateful to be a tiny bit of help to you! You will cope. You’ll survive … and one day, I have a feeling you’ll be able to honestly say that you not only survive but that you thrive.

      Sheri McGregor

  10. notagain

    Jo I am also in Australia and I often buy from Booktopia. I have just looked up Sheri’s book on Booktopia and it is there too.

    Sheri that may be good news for you knowing that other book suppliers are advertising your book.

  11. valerie

    thinking of ordering your book, but as a Christian I wonder if it would line up with my beliefs, Plus how do you control the uncontrollable, like dreams i every so often have a dream I searching for my daughter like shes lost I wake feel such anxiety

    1. rparents Post author

      Hi Valerie,

      I don’t think you will find the book offensive to your principles in any way.

      Regarding dreams, I have written a few for the website that talk of dreams. The latest was posted on December 24, and is very brief. Read through, and then scroll to the bottom. There, you will find links to two more articles about dreams (one that mentions the type of dream you speak of here). Here’s the link to that brief article. Or, you can use the “search” box that’s on the right hand side of the site here, and search “dream.” It will call up a list of articles that include the term.

      If you haven’t signed up for the emailed newsletter, you might also do that. Every few weeks, you will receive a note with updated article postings here at the site, and can click through to access those that interest you. The signup for the newsletter is also on the right.

      Have a good day, Valerie. Thank you for reaching out.

      Sheri McGregor

  12. Annonymous

    Never thought I would be joining this club. I had heard of this happening and always thought it only happened to either abusive, dysfunctional parents, or to parents who gave their children everything they demanded and allowed them to run the show, and the adult children are “punishing” their parents because they didn’t get whatever it is they feel entitled to. That is not my case and doesn’t appear to be the case in many of the posts I have read here, and it begs the baffling question “Why would someone do that to their parent/family?” In my case: we are not asking you to move in with us. In fact, please don’t, that would be horrible. But we love you and want to be a part of your life. If you are mad about something and the most you can manage is a phone call once a month………at least do that humane thing. We are not perfect parents. Neither are you and you may be in our shoes one day.

  13. notagain

    I received my copy of the book just after Christmas. I am so pleased I read this book and I am even more pleased that Sheri wrote this book.

    I strongly recommend all to read it to assist make sense of it all and to find a better path forward. And I am pleased to say Sheri’s book is filled with many wise and sound thoughts to the journey ahead.


  14. Vicky

    I just bought your book and started devouring it.

    One of the things that I like about it, and that I wish to stress to others, is that Sheri, just like me and like us, is a decent mom who did her utmost best. On top of that she is a professional in the field of psychology. These two features put together result in a very credible and professional book. Where we can relate.

    I also wish to point out, that just like Sheri, and like thousands of other parents, I read the authoritative psychology works, and tried to raise my children accordingly. Bonding, quality time, being available were major themes. Children’s self-esteem, self-confidence, self-worth, self-assurance, self-affirmation, self-actualization, self-efficacy, self-fulfillment were major parenting goals. I now realize that the stress was put on children’s “self” this and “self” that. Probably to the detriment of children being sensitive to “others”.

    Now I feel a lot less alone in my predicament, thousands of other decent parents are in the same situation as I find myself in. Despite having done our humanely utmost best to be good parents. Not feeling alone, is very important, just as putting away the shame, the sense of failure and all the other overwhelming negative feelings. Sheri’s book gives the tools to attain these goals and to regain control of our lives.

    Thank you Sheri!

  15. Clh

    I have been reading a bit about the book and all the mothers communications with each other .
    My heart aches so bad , my daughter 26 is getting married in July and I won’t be attending her wedding . I can not go as a guest to my own daughters wedding.

    She went wedding dress shopping with my exhusbands mom and her aunt , ( we have always went shopping for all her prom dresses, graduation dresses, skating competition dresses and it has always been fun) she is getting dressed at her fathers parents place ( but she willl set aside 10 minutes for me) she wouldn’t let me give her a shower , she sent a invitations adddressed to Mrs.. Mr in the mail.

    Her and I live in a different province then where she is getting married ( she is getting married in our home town) I offered to get a hotel room have breakfast catered in but NO.
    For her shower they didn’t even invite me till my mother said something and then she said well we have 1 left we can send you for keepsake. My exhusbands family is very rich.
    I had to walk away after 17 years being married to her father and 23 years of running their family restaurant . If I went after anything they would have nothing to do with our kids but if I walked away they would pay for my daughters schooling and buy my midddle son a house . They have been very good to the kids and they love them very much but their money talks and my daughter forgot who raised her. Who drove her to every dance class, skating lessons, modelling classes, all her competitions. NOT THEM
    For years now we have been on a roller coaster relationship, tug-a-war , I miss her but I just can’t have her treat me like this and when I say something I am mean and say mean things but if I don’t tell her how I feel and she hears through her step sister or brother she calls me mad that I just need to tell her how I feel . I am lost and everyday it is hard the thought of me not being at my daughters wedding hurts so bad but the thought of me going and being trear s like a guest while my ex mother in law acts like the mom would kill me. To spend thousand of dollars to go to this wedding to be treated like a no one does not seem fair to me or my husband.

    I am hoping this book will help me move on and to just let go with out hurting so bad .

  16. Tammy F.

    I am a member of this club. My daughter has made it clear she doesnt wish for a better relationship. I feel she wants to keep all walls firmly in place. I’ve made mistakes. Not horrendous, horrific ones. I’ve apologized. Numerous times. Shes never apologized even once. Even tho I’ve apologized, she wants to keep dredging it up. As tho shes trying to push me to respond in anger. How do you heal wounds when one doesnt wish to heal? Just bought this book. Will be reading it thoroughly tonite.

  17. Claire D.

    My sons estrangement has quite frankly nearly destroyed me as a parent and person. As a divorced parent I gave him everything and probably overcompensated for his dads let downs over the years. I smile to the outside world but inside I feel like I’m the worst parent on earth to have my child not want to engage with me any longer. It destroys me that he has also rejected his aunt and my parents too and when I’m given presents for him. The mental turmoil is untenable… 3 yrs is punishment but that is nothing to what my own thoughts are doing to me, and are clearly leading to my belief that I will also fail
    my daughter too. I’m pleased I found this page and will certainly read the book.


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