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    • #17907

      As an addendum to the welcome thread began some time ago that speaks of this forum as a forward-thinking gathering, for parents hoping to deal with the emotional distress and move forward despite the decisions of estranged adult children (read that topic, please), it’s necessary to make a few quick reminders—-

      The forum is meant to support each other but is not intended for crisis intervention of any kind.

      This space does not serve as therapy, and no one here is acting in any such capacity regardless of their outside professions whether past or present.

      Additionally, this is not a private forum. The posts anyone makes here show up on the Internet. Everyone here (except me) speaks under user names that afford SOME anonymity, but there is no guarantee.

      You’llsometimes see XX posted in place of a location or some other detail. I do this on a very limited basis, and it would be impossible to catch every detail. Please make it easy for me, and safe for yourself and others here by editing out identifying details. As is stated in my welcome message at the top of the main forum page, it may not be wise to have a written record of some things that could potentially be identified/associated to you, hurtful to yourself, or hurtful to others.

      Thank you for your kindness to one another, yourself, me, and those who happen along here. Together, we can keep this a useful community, and create an atmosphere of positive synergy where people offer support and care in moving forward in a happy, prosperous life

      Sheri McGregor

    • #17913

      That’s very good advice. I think the closest I came to revealing info was just mentioning what country I’m from. I know these pages aren’t intended to serve as therapy, but the support offered and hearing other people’s stories is very helpful and comforting. This is a wonderful website. Thank you again for hosting and moderating it for all of us.


    • #18086

      Thank you, Sheri, for this good reminder.

    • #18252

      Thank you so much!

    • #26694

      Thank you Sheri. It’s a wonderful forum and I finally was able to get back in. I was locked out for awhile and couldn’t make a new password. Got it working now.

    • #26707

      I am back Sheri….been absent through ongoing adjustment to this new chapter of my life..Thankyou for your reminders and I take a lot of comfort in reading others stories. Your book changed me in many good ways. Having said that, I still fall in a heap but fortunately, I don’t stay there for long. Thankyou for your support, honesty and understanding

    • #36061

      So very, very important … Sharing can be scary if boundaries are somehow shifted and all sorts of dependency creeps in … I’m from a totally different background to most of you, and live in a far away country. If I spoke about my estrangement in any detail, my location and the individuals concerned would be easily identifiable. So I’m here to read about other people’s experiences and add a few words of encouragement and comfort, if possible.

    • #44049

      In the four months I’ve been here, I’ve basically let it all hang out. So I just want to reassure Sheri that I’m OK with being identified. Not that it’s likely … But you never know. If it happens, it happens. I was warned – and I went full steam ahead, regardless. But here’s the thing: it has been HUGELY cathartic. Thank you, Sheri, for creating a space in which I felt safe enough to do it.

    • #51881

      Thanks for the reminder,much appreciated

    • #51943

      I am bumping this to remind everyone including myself that some people could be recognized by their writing style, mentioning their hobbies if they are non-mainstream, or oversharing about pets and other personal details that seem innocuous at the time.

      Also, we’ve all been here on Earth long enough to know how fast society’s attitudes can change. It may be no big deal to laugh about how funny a child was when they got a spanking they deserved in the ’70s or ’80s, but that could come back to bite you in the tushie if your grandkids or great-grandkids ever needed you to go to court and take custody of them.

    • #52309

      Thanks for the reminder. I am guarded in what I write due to the reasons Sheri gave. I often want to just pull back my curtain, but caution tells me to be careful.

    • #52310

      I’m a new kid (Mom of an estranged daughter) here. I certainly identify with many of the stories of rejection and estrangement. It’s been a year since my only living daughter has disowned me. My oldest daughter suffered a heart atack and died 6 years ago. My oddest daughter made the choice to disown my (now X husband) and I. We tried and tried to talk to her, tell he we loved and cared for her only to be rejected, ridiculed and served with papers by an attorney to hand over all the money we saved for her for her future. My then husband didn’t want to give in to her, but I reasoned with him and he agreed to give her the money/stocks we saved for her future. She died a few years after that. During my divorce, My youngest daughter vasilated between liking my husband better than me after the divorce, then liking me after she had issues with her dad. Now, I’m the one that she has disowned. The reason: she was going to have her first child, I was happy and told her I would be there to help. Well, due to a degenerating hip, which I made her well aware of and my limited mobility I had to have a hip replacement. All this happened a month befor my granddaughter was to be born. I could not help her due to my recovery. She deemed I was a selfish mother who didn’t care about her and what she was going through. My intentions were always to help her but I couldn’t. I love my daughter and never whould I do anything to hurt her. She and her husband scorned me to their friends and family members and besmirched my character. I sent emails phone calls and text messages to talk to my daughter, say I was sorry I had to disappoint her etc., but all my efforts were unanswered. I was heart and spirit broken. I have a granddaughter I have never seen. I have read “Done with the Crying” and it has been very helpful. My state of mind is much better than it was but I’m in disbelief that my daughter has done this to me. Even though I will hold out hopes that my daughter will reconcile with me, I have to throw in the towel and move on with my life. I miss and love her but I have to think about me, my health and my well being. It’s very hard. I’m thinking of being a mentor to a foster child and helping a kid that didn’t have the love and all the great times, gifts and love I gave my to girls.

    • #56514

      Logged in for my first time just now……reading this great advice.

    • #63214

      I found this site and group tonight and have sat here reading about 8-9 hours until dawn has come, just soaking it up with a sense not only of surprise but also relief. It is SO GOOD to know that I am one of many and not the only ‘worst and least-wanted mother in the world’!

      After all this reading and considering the sun is up now I really need to sleep now, so I will introduce myself properly soon. I just wanted to say that I feel almost overwhelmed by and in awe of the massive amount of courage and strength I have been reading here. The deep pain is so evident too and that’s why this courage and strength is so special, it’s not easy to be brave when things are hurting!

    • #63216

      Whoops, sorry, I posted that on the wrong page! It’s my first, I will learn.

      • #65528

        I can relate to your comments. I too am new and feel relief that I’m not so alone.

      • #83542

        I thought I was alone until a friend put me onto this page. It is sad there are so many of us, but it does help to have a place to talk and be understood and mot judged.

    • #63780

      Fall is especially difficult for me, and in honor of this post-title, I won’t give the details. It culminates with white-knuckling through Christmas/New Years, and a hope for for a better year. I am standing my ground, but I want to share a few things with all of you, as I am a researcher by trade. My first few months on this site, I would read things that sounded shockingly familiar, and think, “Did I write that? or “How did they know?” I started keeping my ear to the ground, as I am wont to do when doing cursory research, and WOW- there are a lot of us out there! We’re too embarrassed, ashamed, or we’ve just moved on and the info doesn’t arise organically. Sheri recognized an epidemic in the making! I saved my family in every way possible, and purposely didn’t date, and now I’m alone. Learning how NOT to be a Mom, a leader of my family, and starting over at this age is painful. When I read about the gals who have husbands to lean on, or other children who are not estranged, I know that brings its own challenges, but to know that comfort must be such a blessing. Happy Thanksgiving.

    • #64630

      It’s very confusing to recognize that you passed on possible relationships and a future as a tactic to focus on and protect your children, then they abandon you at n older age and you are alone..

      • #64662

        Hmmm … your post is a cautionary note that is duly noted.


    • #64733

      to Hmmm, it is interesting that you passed up possible relationships and now you are alone. I passed up excellent jobs in order to be a stay at home mother so she didn’t have to go to daycare.

      Now she says I “should” have been working to make money so she could buy pretty things.

      I can’t win, darned if you do darned if you don’t.

    • #64836

      Hi all!

      I am new here and will do whatever I can to make this as anonymous as possible. I am thankful I am not alone with this grief and look forward to building a happy prosperous life along with the folks on the forum. So nice to have fellow travelers:)

      • #66492

        I think this part of the forum may be the one that new members land on first, so I am posting here.
        I am new to this community. Like all of you, I never concieved that this would be the outcome of decades of unrestrained giving of myself and my resources to an intinitely beloved and only child.
        I am hurt beyond my ability to cope.
        I recognize that this isn’t crisis intervention and would and will take such needs elsewhere if they come to be. That said, wow, this situation really takes my last bit of coping ability at an otherwise intensely troubled time of my life, and for this moment, while the shock is so fresh and so searingly painful, wipes out my innate ability to manage life’s earthquakes.
        I have a terminal cancer diagnosis, and am reaching the end of my working life-years. I have no husband, no other children, and due to a profoundly abusive upbringing, don’t connect well enough to have made friends. Other people just don’t see life as I do.
        Recently I had an unexpected financial setback, which I am having to put any spare energy into fixing as much as it can be fixed so that the rest of my life can go on (leaving out details to make me less identifiable, not that many would anyway, but per policy and good sense).
        Over the holidays there was a marked easing of the viscious abusive rejecting behavior of my child. As I had feared, that came to an end yesterday night, and they were back to exactly the same old tired false immensely hurtful lies and abuse.
        I don’t know if I am glad I got that few day period of lessened tensions and temporary love (contradiction in terms by my thoughts but apparently not to my adult child).
        Anyway- this is me saying Hello to all of you.
        I am so very sorry that you feel the pain that I do- and if you will forgive me, I am glad that I am not alone in this pain. It is so deep, so blindingly unexpected, so all enveloping (at least in the phase I’m in now) that no one who has not had the misfortune to live through it could possibly understand the level of pain. I never saw a life beyond “helper to my (adult now and for over a decade) child”, but that view has been ripped from me. I grant that it may have been unhealthy, too much of a burden to place, and yet I see loving adult children every day in my work (I’m in the healthcare field). I see immense sacrifices, and I see proof of love.
        Whereas the child I would have died for – would still die for – may be dying for – isn’t sure that they are able to be present as the “take home driver” in a surgery to find the extent of the cancer spread coming up early next month.
        And all the while the ticking of this financial time bomb can’t be ignored, I have no choice but to try to deal with this entirely new arena of the financial part of life, and I have very little time to do it.
        When all I have felt up to doing since my diagnosis and prognosis is to crawl into bed and pull the world in after me.
        I’m pretty sure I’m supposed to say something upbeat and spunky here. Maybe I’ll just post as is and look back at how raw the pain can be at first at some later point.
        God, My God, it is lonely here alone (and yet not- Thank you Sheri).

      • #73843


      • #91415

        It’s been a while since you posted your situation, but I pray things got better.

    • #64886

      Thank you Sheri for the opportunity to have a place where us forgotten parents can feel free to pour our hearts out to those who can understand and not be judgemental.

    • #64999

      Hi Everyone,
      This is my 1st post. I was ready to post about 2 weeks ago, when my mom died unexpectedly, so I had to get to a place where I can deal with her death, and that grief before I could post. Its been a hard slide, but I am here. I want to heal and be positive. I am done with crying, I have read Sheri’s book, but will read it again. I am tired of convincing myself I am good person. I did my very best as a working mother, tirelessly gave of myself. So I am here and I am listening.

      I want to Thank you Sheri for taking the time to set this up for me personally.

    • #65053

      Dear braveheart,

      My condolences on your mother’s death!

      Hugs and more hugs … about that and everything.

      Sheri McGregor

    • #65166

      Braveheart, so sorry to hear about your mom. Please take care of your self and read Sheri’s book as many times as you need – I am on my 3rd reading.
      I am like you and everyone on this site….a kind, loving, caring mom who did her best with raising her kids, but as we all know these estrangements are one of the hardest things to deal with.

      Sorry you need the site, but glad you have posted and please read other’s posts, you can find comfort there too.

      Hugs from the farm

    • #66539

      Thank you for this group. I’m new to the group and new to estrangement (almost 5 months). Like every one of you, I’m also in dazed and in disbelief. I am learning a lot, and am grateful for this group. Thank you…

      • #66769

        BigTex –

        I too am new to estrangement. It’s been about 5 months for us as well. After the years of emotional abuse, being told that everything I say and do is somehow wrong, and that I’m the family joke, then being made to feel guilty when I state that I feel like no one cares, I’m ready to move on. My struggle is that I’m definitely not ready to move on from the relationship with my grandkids. The SIL states that he’ll never interfere with that, but when he’s angry at me we get total radio silence from the kids. It’s pretty obvious that he’s doing or saying something to keep them away. There’s a pattern that’s hard to miss.

        My biggest fear is being alone as a senior citizen. I’m the youngest child in my family and when my siblings are gone, I’m alone, except what friends I have, who are about my age. Knowing I’ll be alone in my old age, dealing with medical issues, etc. is frightening.

        I’m so glad for this forum, and to know we aren’t alone in our sufferings.

      • #66894

        Dazed and in Disbelief… that describes the experience so well.
        Like you, this outcome is not one that was even remotely on the list of outcomes I saw as possible, for the result of my love and care of my now adult child.
        Not so much because I am so wonderful a parent – although I gave everything I had to give on all levels, and did it gladly without ever conceiving a need to hold back so that I would protect myself in some way – but rather because I didn’t think that the compassionate child I raised would ever behave in this manner.
        My now rejecting of me adult child has been giving and compassionate since he was a toddler. Once, when I was married to his father, we had to call child protective services on the single mom who lived above us, as the screaming and thumps made it ethically necessary that we act to protect her child from obvious mental and physical abuse.
        My point in mentioning this was that, of course, the mom retaliated by calling on us, although there was no abuse in our home, quite the reverse. Anyway, when the CPS worker knocked at my door I was somewhat horrified. My 1 year old son sensed my emotions, and without prompting, came over to me, pulled the pacifier from his mouth and offered it to me, and placed his little arms on my legs in a hug. On seeing his reaction, the CPS worker said “I think my work here is done.” as it was obvious my son had learned what he had lived, that is, compassion and love.
        And yet here things are- I who gave him everything, am rejected, while my ex who can’t be bothered to call and who never gave a cent in support after the divorce, gets Christmas gifts and holiday calls with time and attention. My son has little money (using my place as a crash pad, part time job, otherwise supported by me) but he uses what little extra (saving for a car) to buy strangers children Toys for Tots, which he carefully picks out. I do not understand. When I asked, he said “because I care about you and not about my father. I am so confused and so hurt. One moment I feel cared for, the next it is obvious my very life is priority #last with him most of the time.
        To all of you who are in similar circumstances, thank you for your support, and know that my heart goes out to you. May your journey to healing be brisk, and your pain recede with each day. May your life come to be filled with things that give you what you need.
        Hugs to all.

    • #66579

      Welcome to Braveheart!
      I too am so sorry for your loss of your mom recently, as well as that familiar need to try to convince ourselves, we DID love and care for our children, and ARE good parents and are good people.

      Welcome also, to MsExistential and to BigTex. It is certainly a shocking thing, to find ourselves in this situation.
      And then, in addition, to feel fear and shame, that many other people, will be judgmental, rather than see the good in us.

      Hoping4Hope, I have experienced seeing other adults, who also, like yours, were not available to take their own parent to or from the hospital in such dire situations as yours, so I am VERY sorry this is happening to you, but you are not alone in that, either.
      Many GOOD parents experience this lack of regard or care or sense of moral value, I don’t comprehend what it is, but I have seen that, too.
      Nor do I receive any help with my ongoing illness and disability, from an adult child who was greatly cared for.

      I am so sorry for your difficult and scary diagnosis, and I send you my caring. And my welcome.

    • #66670


      There is nothing I can say that will make your situation upbeat. I am sad and angry on your behalf, at the unfairness of your illness and of your daughter’s lack of support. Please know that you at least have the ear of all of us on this forum, and that we are able to understand the shock and grief that go with the abandonment by adult children at the times of our lives that we might need them most.

      We can’t change what is happening in anyone’s lives, but we are here to listen and offer suggestions if you want them. Just as you have said that you are glad you are not alone in your pain, I feel the same way . . .

    • #66959

      I want to participate but just can’t put together an introduction. I feel like anything I say will identify me. Maybe if I just wait and read a lot of other people’s stories my own story won’t seem so unique.

    • #67098

      That is why I haven’t told my whole story. I problem is so unique that my ED would recognize it immediately. She was once engaged to an IT person who taught her a lot about the internet.

      I wish everyone here a good life free of pain from any source.
      I wish I could help. I am here to give support and listen.

    • #67259

      Sasha7133, thank you …and yes!…if I tell my story and I am identified it will bring to me more of what I already received; more contempt and more rejection. It seems horrible for a mother to say but I am enjoying the break. I am free of the tension and put downs. I am free to do things I enjoy. I have less physical pain, more energy, and my teeth aren’t biting down hard when I sleep so I don’t need to wear a protective device to prevent cracking more of my teeth. The first 48 hours was awful because it was such a traumatic shock that I felt it in my body. I pulled on every resource I had to calm down (except using a substance of any kind) and received peace in my body sooner than I anticipated. I wrote out all my thoughts about the break of the relationship and sealed them away in an envelope. I erased any hateful communication and blocked the phone number. I really haven’t been thinking about it; pretty busy and staying in the present moments. I feel guilty saying it but I am grateful. I never even dreamed I would ever be free of the obligation to keep trying; it never occurred to me. I am not capable of divorcing my adult child (AC) like an abusive spouse. I have been refusing to compare my life with the lives of others that appear to be having a great time with their adult children. I refuse to spend time thinking it is not fair. I refuse to eat my heart out on social media. Those trends of thought cause me pain. I have been thinking about how perfect God takes care of me and thanking him for what He gives and what He takes away. I do trust God knows best and am willing to fit in with His plans for me. In many ways this break is a blessing. I know I am supposed to be miserable all the time but I am not. The moments of hurt are few and fleeting. If I had a choice I would choose a loving relationship with my AC but I only felt contempt. I think it is okay for me to enjoy my life other ways. The relationship has destroyed my self-esteem. I don’t believe this will even get posted. I believe nobody will want to accept me and how I feel; like it is not normal. This is a whole lot better than what I had. A thought keeps reoccurring: “Who is the target now?” I would like to stop that. It is none of my business but I know there has to be one.

    • #67628

      Thank you. I am new here and I am glad I found this forum. I am not exactly estranged from my adult children but I may as well be. They don’t visit. My daughter lives about 20 minutes away but she never visits. My son lives out of state. They email me and keep in touch that way but I don’t see them much.

    • #67631

      Thanks for this forum. I never realized before that so many are hurting from the actions of their adult children. This is my first post. My adult children can’t hurt me anymore. I am numb. I’m not sure if I can feel anything anymore. Once I went 3 years without speaking to my son. My son was abusive. I left town and he didn’t know where I went. He didn’t have my new address or phone number. I thought I wouldn’t see or hear from him again. Then one day I received an email from him. He wanted to see me. Our relationship has been rocky. I don’t see him much. As far as my daughter goes, I don’t see her much either even though she lives only 20 minutes away. She never visits. She is moving out of state soon. I can’t say she will be missed because I never saw much of her anyway. Good luck to everyone on this forum.

    • #70397

      thoughts are with you

    • #70561

      First post for me. Being a stay at home mom to my two sons has been my dream. They are both such kind and conscientious souls. Our younger son met a girl online and at first we thought she was great. We live three hours away and did not get to spend much time getting to know her but our son kept us informed and I could tell he was falling in love big time. There were red flags along the way that stood out but when your son is 29 you really have to keep your thoughts to yourself. As soon as they were engaged things changed. It was like a complete turn around in her personality. She would complain to my son and he in turn would complain to me. I observed myself and asked my husband if he noticed things. I was accused of not paying enough attention to her, so I tried to pay more attention. It was like the proverbial snowball rolling down the hill. Luckily I have friends and family who know this story every step of the way and all the strangest accusations, not addressing cards the way she would have preferred, not asking enough about the wedding, after having offered my time to help with the shower and wedding. She never let me help with the rehearsal dinner. Once she got the ring on her finger she was in charge of making every decision. They were married last spring in a 10 minute ceremony. She pulled out my older son two weeks prior and substituted him with a miniature horse carrying the rings. She entered the courthouse to the StarvWars theme blasting and her dad dressed as Darth Vader followed by costumed storm troopers to stand at the pews. My son had no idea what to expect as he hadn’t had a clue what she had planned. It was all of 10 minutes long. She refused to take pictures with our side of the family. No reception…they headed out for their honeymoon and that’s the last We have seen them. Almost a year ago. There have been a few texts and the last time I talked to him was mother’s day. I thought surely he would come to his senses, but he has not talked or seen any family or any of his friends since the engagement. It’s like she has swallowed him into her family and none of us are allowed in. I have cried more tears than I can count. We have asked, begged to get together to talk this out but she always refuses and he wont say what any of us has done to cause this rift. My heart is broken and am loosing hope of him standing up and defending our family. Just got Sherr’s book in the mail today and am looking forward to to reading it. I can not believe how many of us are out there feeling abandoned by our once loving child.

      • #72527

        Hi, MamaG.

        This is my first day and first post here…I just wanted to say your personal story resonates with me, and my personal story.

        Hopefully, soon, I’ll find the ability to find and use the words to be able to share my story, too, but in the meantime there IS a (warped?) comfort in knowing I am not alone.

        Sad that I had to, but very glad that I found this place.

    • #70683

      Hi MamaG – Welcome to the forum. Your story is so very typical of many, and you are so justified to feel the way that you do. I’m so sorry that you are going through this awful time with your son. Here you will find others who can understand your grief and pain, and although none of us can make your pain go away, we can offer advice which may help you live again.

      So that others will see your initial post, it might be a good idea to repost it in your profile as is or slightly abbreviated, or start a new thread. There are many wise people here, and you will be welcomed with much love by all of us.


    • #70758

      Dotty, hope this is where I reply to you! Thank you for the welcome! It helps hearing others stories. It’s all just so emotional yet to me. I just read the section on hope and the tears flowed.

    • #72584

      Hi MamaG – Yes, I have seen your reply. It certainly does help knowing that we are not alone in all of this, and for me it helped reading others’ posts that they had worked through the pain and were now not being held back with the grief and loss. My estrangement is coming up two years, and although for the most part I do feel as though I am out the other side, sometimes I can tear up all over again, although it is never as bad as it was.

      Take care, and big hugs


    • #73433

      Greetings! I just discovered the Rejected Parents , and I am so grateful to all of you who have posted and shared, and to Sheri for developing this site! My journey began in a foreign country and I am back in my home country. Unfortunately, my children witnessed, then adopted the abusive behavior. I kept thinking that if I could remain stoic (sometimes I failed and snapped back) that someday they would see me for who I am and not as the stupid person they have been told that I am. The fallout from this past Christmas has shown me that most of them do not and will never believe in me, and that they consider it acceptable to disparage everything about me. Having swam to shore, I am just catching my breathe.

    • #77507

      Thank you. I am new here. I thought I was the only one experiencing this type of loss. I am reaching out to receive counseling here where I live. I was just amazed when I read your article and discovered I wasn’t alone. This has side swiped me and hurt me so deeply. I never talk about it because I feel ashamed. I want to cry when I do talk about it. I am so confused. I am lost.

    • #77509


      Welcome. You are not alone. Know that you are cared for here and among friends. I’m glad you are reaching out for local counseling and hope you have a good experience

      Sheri McGregor

    • #78726

      Dear MamaG1957,
      Please know others share similar experiences as what you and your family have. Sheri’s advice and comments on so many topics have been a life line to many of us. We EP are here – thankfully we still have our minds functioning after all we have been through. Focusing on the loving family members we have left has helped us to go on, and keeping positively engaged in either our careers or fruitful activities helps also. I wish I could tell everyone when the nightmare will end, but I cannot. Sheri’s advice to discover who we now are after estrangement is very uplifting and practical. Life, light and laughter really can – and must – be present in our post estrangement lives. These are the very elements that will serve as the foundation for the new chapters in our lives. Stay engaged in whatever positive experiences bring you joy and love – I learned this from Sheri. Her son and mine estranged from us in 2013. Sheri’s recorded journey – in successfully navigating through this gut wrenching nightmare – has blessed not only me but all of us here – and those who read but do not share or post. Love and hugs to everyone. Stay strong – we have been given the gift of life! Let’s live it!

    • #93546

      Hello all! This is my very first post and my heart bleeds when I read some of your stories. The first thing that comes to mind is how very strong you all are. Its all in ‘the roll of the dice’ with grown kids, I don’t believe it makes any difference in how we bring them up. I know adults who had the worst possible childhood and yet they took life by the steering wheel and made a decent life for themselves and their children. Many do ok and many dont………

      I wont write my story on this thread, I’ll give a brief description of my situation in another thread. I’ll be careful to keep things confidential. My situation has been a while brewing and now I know I need to face the inevitable, my oldest child, the one I had when I was 19 and has everything to live for has written me an email telling me I’m a selfish, uncompassionate and loveless person, which of course I know isnt true, its her perception and her reflection on her own life…

      God bless you all and when your lonely feel His arms around her, He is always near.

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