March 15, 2019 at 12:30 am #74518
I’m just done. Been estranged for 7 months from both my sons over a stupid girl who my youngest isn’t dating anymore. Have a dil for 10 years to my oldest son who has caused nothing but hate. Called everyone on their crap finally and I’m the bad guy. The singleMom who busted her ass for them. Now I’m
Just done. Anyone else just want to be done.? Have days when they just want it to be over? They are my only family and it’s iust me and my dogs. Nothing. Nada. No one. Therapy would be great but don’t have money or health insurance for it. I never knew a heart could be so broken and that I would turn into a 54 y/o unfeeling woman
March 15, 2019 at 3:25 am #74536
Yes, me too MattieJ. I want to be done with this. For me to let go or give in would mean to close the door, done. And it wouldn’t open again. Much like when as a child you gave up on that toy you never got, like that high school boy friend that you were so much in love with yet that broke up with you? No, this is so much more than that! Like that “forever” marriage that ended in divorce.
Done. Gone. Never going there again. Can I do that?
Just an 60 year old women, alone, totally. Truly…not the alone in the crowd kind. I just me and my dogs. They love me.
March 15, 2019 at 2:47 pm #74552
I am blessed with a wonderful husband who seems to be dealing with the loss of our only child by being more affectionate with me. Not sure what I would do without him! I also have friends who seem to know I am hurting who have made extra efforts to encourage me to take walks, go shopping with them, just get out. Those are the silver clouds in this rotten situation.
Other than that, I can say I am moving towards but not totally able to say I am done. Still love my ES and GS not so much the witch fiancé who seems to be stirring the pot here with her expectations that she can put where the sun does not shine.
At age 65 I am not gong to waste what time I have left here n earth begging anyone who I did all I could for …possibly too much for to talk to me.
March 15, 2019 at 7:48 pm #74574
I’m done some days and not others. Done with them, but not done wondering how/why it came to this and definitely not done wondering how I can be almost 50 and have had so much heartbreak and feel so brittle (I’m learning not to say “bitter,” but it’s a slight distinction). If they knocked on the door today, I’d have to tie myself to a chair not to open it and answer tearfully and lovingly and want to be 100% in relationship with them; but my better brain know that to be in relationship with them is to invite this again…and again, and again, and again. I’m “done” in as much as I’ve gotten to the point that I hope they never knock. (Even as that breaks my heart. This way; then that way; sometimes I feel like a crazy yo-yo.)
March 16, 2019 at 5:05 am #74617
11sofeldespair. I am exactly in the same position that you’re in. Except my daughter is estranged from us and lime your son, my ED is influenced by her husband. I gave a wonderful husband like yours who is extremely supportive. He tends to bottle things up, in denial and believes things will work itself out by itself. Thus time it won’t.
We are on our second estrangement with her. After two years with taking full responsibility and apologizing , we reunited. It was pretty rocky in the beginning. But we managed . We lasted two years, had an argument , and everything unravelled with lightening speed. . Then came the , nasty name calling., the contempt and the desrespect. towards me . The same behaviour that casused our first estrangement.
This time I was the one who chose to walk away. I only empowered her and unwittingly validated her belief that it was all my fault. Shecis 45 years old and to this day has never taken responsibility or god forbid an apology for thevpart she played.
Her husband and I always got along . Like our daughter, her husband could barely tolerate my husband. Long story but she got stuck into her teenage angst towardsxa fathervsgexwas always clise to. Then shecmet her now husband who cane from a broken dysfunctional and disrespectful home to the nadtiest of divorce, The parents and two sons communicated by screaming and cursing at each other. Worlds apart from wher our ED was raised . Since she met him ,her behavior is like one who was raised in the gutter . To get along with her was like walking on egg shells.
I learned once an estrangement happens, there’s something broken that should never h ave been broken in the beginning. No matter his hard you try that fracture may somewhat repair , but it’s fragile, it would take very little to break.
Like you , I have chosen two of my closest friends to confide in for a few reasons. I’m ashamed to admit to my family that I’m here again with our ED,. They may find out eventually has they all live a long distanve away. And a couple more people I told was uncomfortable with it , which added to my pain.
There are no two days alike. But I know now there will never be any happy endings for us. If we reunite , it will be all about control, desrespect and walking on eggshells. I refuse to live one m more day like it. Nit one. It’s surreal, sometimes painful but I’m living peaceful life now, a peace I haven’t known for many years.
I wish you all the best. . Your estrangement has nothing to do with you. It’s about your DIL . God forgive her. She hasn’t figured it out yet but a child learns by example . Her day will come.
March 16, 2019 at 3:14 pm #74623
Being done does not have to mean we shut that door and bolt it tight, nailed in. Being done is for our emotional wellness. Waiting at that door, peaking out, waiting and crying can become so self limiting that our lives are unhappy. Being done might just be us throwing off the chains of despair! The door can be opened should a knock come. Giving in to reality not giving up to life.
March 16, 2019 at 8:26 pm #74625
To me, being done means giving up all expectations that anything will ever be different. Not having any more days of immense hope, only to be slammed to the ground with despair so bad I wanted to die.
March 16, 2019 at 8:31 pm #74630
Easy Street- My husband also bottles things up and refuses to talk about anything. I was talking to a friend today who has known me since my ES was in kindergarten. She says I will hear from him when he needs something….well what kinds of relationship is does? Based on needing something? A broken tooth, a broken furnace, the need for a loan??? Not calling to see how we are only what he can get from US!
Reminds me of a financial person we met with yesterday who had her high pressure brother come to the meeting and try to sell us a 10 year annunity that we do not want at our ages- We have done a lot of business with their firm and they have made a huge amount on us. They are not satisfied though, they want more and more and more- they know what are assest are and want to get a hold of them to make huge commissions.
We have been clients for 16 months already and have received MANY promises of a nice dinner out to thank us for all the business. We were invited to cheap $9.99 all you can eat fish places that are greasy dives and on one occasion invited BY EMAIL which I did not read the same day of the invitation saying can you meet us in 30 minutes at a restaurant that was over 45 minutes away! Later she sent me an email that the dinner was fantastic and sorry we could not make it! Not an invite in the least- simply an insult!
This morning, after we refused to sign up yesterday saying we had too many annuities already, she sent me an invite to come to her home tomorrow for a BBQ and CCed her pushy brother who insisted NO ONE ever refuses this great product! Obviously the intention is to put a strong arm sales tactic on us and convince us to make them a big commission on a 10 year product which we indicated was of no interest at our ages.
Point of this story is that some people only know you and care about you when they want something for their own benefit- not yours. They will smile in your face and laugh behind your back. Make phony invitations and promises and make a fool of you.
Same with our estranged kids- they only seem to know us when they need something, otherwise we are on the do not call list.
I think that my state of mind after this most recent estrangement has made me realize that people can stink in plain English. My husband often says animals are great and people not so much.
I am done with being polite and friendly as people will take advantage of me. Obviously, this woman just wants to make a profit off me otherwise she ignores me—- much like our ES.
So next time my ES has some emergency or needs something I will tell him what I told her, no thanks not interested. Not going to kiss anyone’s feet anymore- I am better than that and deserve better! And anyone reading this also deserves better than to be abused!
Terrible way to look at life but for my own peace of mind it is the only way.
March 16, 2019 at 8:48 pm #74638
This is a good thread. I guess done, for me, means no more participation toward what has only proven to be disappointment and anguish.
11years, I want to thank you for sharing your story. I think there are business person’s who are being taught how to interact with “older” people. The trouble is, older people feel scammed because it’s not genuine and we’re pretty wise to come-ons. Also, when we say no, we mean it. For me, your story made me feel less alone. I have suffered similar “marketing” a couple times lately. Once, it wasn’t so bad, and I did want the product, and I just kind of chuckled because I saw through it. The second one caught me off guard and really disgusted and angered me. I guess there are criminal scammers and those who are not criminal. (Gosh, this is bordering on sounding bitter.)
Anyway, we don’t have to stop being kind and no longer trust anyone. But we can trust our gut and be slow to act. This is true whether of our pocketbook or our heart.
Hugs to y’all. I’m feeling a lot better today. Maybe this flu really does end! LOL.
💃 (that’s supposed to be me dancing)
March 16, 2019 at 8:51 pm #74637
For me, being done means I will not allow my EC to control my life. I have always had their best interests in my heart and they are always on my mind. I was always there for them and sacrificed myself endlessly. The absolute torture this has caused me throughout these years of gradual estrangement has ended in them shutting me down completely – my life is not part of theirs anymore by their choice only.
I have decided several times not to talk to them, to stop begging, pursuing them, apologizing for nothing. But always, in the back of my mind was the hope that it would bring them back to me. And so I would cave and try again and again. I see now that I am merely playing their game and they really don’t care anyway.
So I too am done. I am moving on to try and make my life the best it can be. My husband has passed away (2 years ago now), none of my 3 children or 6 grandchildren are in my life by their choice, and so I am remaking my life.
I retired 3 months ago at 62 and am pursuing a new career in writing. I am volunteering my time, taking classes, have a book club started and have membership to an art institute. I do a lot with my church and have many very good friends. I vow to build a new life and to stop wasting the life I have left in hoping for my own children to care. They clearly don’t and I’m sick of being hurt.
If they ever attempt to contact me I would welcome them. But I would do so with a great deal of suspicion, knowing they simply want something from me (like money). Trust is gone as is that feeling that they are my entire world. That is past and I refuse to live in the past. I did my very best and I’ve been beating this dead horse way too long.
It’s time for me to be me – the best version I can muster up. That way I will not have wasted the precious life God has given me to use for his Glory. My kids are not my God. Maybe that’s what I did wrong. I think I cared too much with no expectation of anything in return. Well, they certainly met that expectation, but I deserve more.
I hope they have good lives, and I will always pray for them and still send the grandkids acknowledgement of their birthdays and Christmas. This situation isn’t their fault, afterall.
I intend to flourish, despite their efforts to pretend I don’t exist.
I am worthy of love.
March 16, 2019 at 9:50 pm #74641
Thank you for your post you say it so well and I so respect you for being strong and saying exactly how I want to be. I feel I am done and refuse to dance to the tune anymore of grovelling and begging for crumbs and being dismissed and cast aside.
I feel like you that I wish my ED well and although I would love to hear from her but very much doubt I will. My GC are innocent and I so hope they are well and happy I am not allowed any contact and am not even allowed to send them cards.
I intend now to stop waiting to hear from them I am moving on as best as I can even though there will always be a pain in my heart.
Love and peace
March 16, 2019 at 10:51 pm #74645
Sheri, It’s good to hear you are feeling better. It takes so much longer to recover from the varieties of flu out there, so baby steps are in order here too!
11yrs and fs, it sounds to me as I read your posts that you’ve reached that point on this journey where you’ve had enough. Maybe too much. Seeing the forest for the trees can strip the blinders of wishing and hoping for things to be the way they were, or even restored. Reality instead is revealed.
But, best to be forgiving of self if sometimes those individual trees look better than the acreage. In other words, this journey doesn’t have a fixed end point. For the most part, there will be far better days, weeks, months and, yes, even years eventually. Really.
I self-talk about this when thinking about a huge orthopedic surgery I had half a lifetime ago. There are days the pain can come roaring back, even after 35 yrs! But most days I go about my business as if I never had the surgery. The analogy holds for healing from this terrible wound of E. As Sheri counsels, it’s about YOU(forest) , not THEM (trees).
March 18, 2019 at 3:41 am #74725
For me being done means, done with blaming myself, done with thinking there most be something I can do it fix it.
My husband is not dealing well with this at all. He is angry and stuffs it and it comes out on me. We talked about divorce today.
This is to much lose in my life. Close to 60 yrs old, no you don’t plan for this.
March 18, 2019 at 4:33 am #74730
I am so sorry about your situation with your husband. This kind of stress has such a ripple effect. It is so unfair to add marital problems to the misery of estrangement.
I pray for you both and hope you can work this out. My heart breaks for you. So much suffering.
Yes, there will always be pain in our hearts because this is not what we want and the strong love a woman has for her children and grandchildren makes it very hard to disengage. But holding them all in our hearts is just setting them aside for now. I don’t believe it means totaling giving up. It means you have a duty to your own life and that has to be for now. There will be better tomorrows. Save yourself. The alternative is that everything is lost. I can’t let that happen to my life and it sounds like you can’t either. It is time to forgive ourselves and be kind to ourselves. As Emily 38 has told us it will be better over time. Best of luck.
March 18, 2019 at 2:48 pm #74733
I also echo what fresh start says…I am sorry its effect is rippling into your marriage. My husband and I too struggled, with all of this. Since your EC are not around, you tend to use your spouse as a sounding board…yet they aren’t capable of helping either! Its frustrating and unfair to our spouses. One thing I did with my husband that seemed to help him turn the corner was I downloaded Sheri’s book in audible version to his phone so he could listen to it. He doesn’t like to read but loves long hikes, long commutes to work. It validated what he was feeling. It helped move us along….maybe this can help your husband too? Hang in there….
March 18, 2019 at 2:52 pm #74735
Boots, Welcome to the forum. I believe estrangement can be hard on a marriage because we often react and act in ways that go back to what we have learned in childhood. My husband and I are on our second marriages and we each have EC from our own side. His family has always treated husband terribly, lot of scapegoating and golden child picking of the parents’ favorite. All of the siblings have been damaged by their upbringing and then one sister (aunt) enabled husband’s ES to estrange, with the grandparents permission. At first, we were shocked and hurt. We did short term family counseling with ES which did nothing to repair the relationship with him but taught us that we were not the bad guys that ES made us out to be. As time went on and the aunt and grandparents continued enabling the ES to live his worst life, husband got angrier and his anger is passive aggressive. He doesn’t speak up to the family, but later he would dump on me. HIs family taught him that he didn’t matter so he goes silent around them, just a learned habit that isn’t helpful these days. Silent with the abusers and then vocal with me, which frustrates me enormously. And then he would hear from his ES and jump at the chance to appease, which would turn out to be disaster for us, another painful episode of ES’s abuse, etc. Lots of arguments between husband and I, we still will argue about the estrangements sometimes.
Anyway, at one point I thought I would have to move out of the house to get away from the stress and abuse of the ES situation. I was pretty strong dealing with my 2ED and able to set boundaries. My husband demands I not allow my 2ED to abuse us, but he gets weak with his ES. I forced husband to go to counseling, as a last ditch effort. Therapist pointed out a lot of these family patterns to husband and how husband has value no matter what family says. We read some books together, watched some youtube videos, etc. Husband got some self insight and has calmed down quite a bit and is able to set boundaries with ES most of the time. Husband will go automatically into enable and appease mode with the ES, which causes an argument, but then he realizes what is best for everyone. And husband is able to see the forest for the trees and no longer blames himself — or blames me. Does still have some guilt and shame but he actually told a cousin the truth this past weekend, which is probably the first time he’s told someone the ES has been diagnosed with a personality disorder and how his family enabled the estrangement.
And I worked on me and decided I had many bad emotional habits that needed fixing. I learned to find my own “power” and voice and meet my own emotional needs. So husband’s anger at the estrangement no longer becomes my issue to fix (in my head and how I react).
Sometimes estrangement cracks a marriage or makes the already there cracks worsen. Sometimes one spouse does parental alienation that makes the other spouse the target of the scapegoating. Depending on what is going on with you and your husband, counseling might help (couples counseling or individual). To learn to cope and not take it out on each other. If he’s willing to read Sheri’s book, its a good start. I highly recommend Sheri’s book to everyone reading this forum.
Anyway, best wishes to you. I know this is a sad and stressful time for you and your husband.
March 18, 2019 at 3:05 pm #74740
If you and your husband have had a good marriage overall, it would be a real shame to let an estranged adult child ruin another relationship.
Your husband would benefit from my book. I bet on it, and hear from more men all the time who do and have.
He is angry and needs to find a way to channel that anger productively rather than take it out on you. I think if he is a reasoning person, you can appeal to that part of him. But it will take a plan, and you not getting angry in the moment too. I do recommend marriage counseling as well. A good marriage counselor will help you become a team again. (A bad one will try to get you in touch with your EC as the answer.)
Bottom line: you two are a team, and your hubby is making you the enemy. It’s possible he is punishing himself because he feels the estrangement is his fault, feels you blame him, blames you, etc. These things can get pretty thorny. But a good marriage deserves fighting for.
Hugs to you dear Boots!
March 19, 2019 at 2:58 am #74788
Thank you everyone, how comforting to read caring replies. I am reading your book Sheri, it has helped me so much and I do the exercises at the end of each chapter that you recommend. I tried to get my husband to read the book, I know it would help him. He is in a dark place and he knows this. My 35 years of marriage have been marked by his dark places. But with the loss of my two ED and grandchildren, my heart is on overload of grief. Thank you again for your responses it’s nice to be heard. Also wanted to say Sheri, I heard your radio interview it was really good. Thankfully, Boots
March 19, 2019 at 8:06 am #74804
You said you never imagined how a heart could be so broken, and this is how it would feel to be a 54 yr old woman. That says it. That says so much for me.
Boots, welcome, and I am so sorry that your husband is adding extra hurt for you, by blaming you , and it’s a terrible overall situation for you. I wonder if he had in the past, put his anger and upset toward you and blamed you in the past, for other things too, that are not your fault and are not what you want either.
I hope he might reconsider, or consider seeking help for himself, maybe counselling on his own dark times and blaming his wife for them. For things you cannot fix. I hope he will see it isn’t you. I hope he can see that you are both feeling this difficult estrangement , and could help each other.
Meanwhile, take as gentle good kind care of yourself as possible. You are going thru so much, and it hurts badly, and as you said, is not what we planned for.
We understand it’s awful.
March 19, 2019 at 1:08 pm #74813
Yellow rose , you had said,, “an already cracked marriage”, indeed it was and I have been that glue mending that crack. Sheri, you have said, maybe he blames himself, yes he does, but he won’t get the help he needs. As far me blaming him, yes to a point, but that is not fair as EDs are adults and make their own choices. The married a very controlling man and when he talked about his family, the hand writing was on the wall. I alsway had a very close relationship with my EDs. Youngest one, was my problem child, challenging at me at every corner over dumb stuff like what I was going to bake for a family event. I was bullied a lot until I turned 50 and thought enough of this. So stated to say no, ED could not hear, no or receive no, and still be respectful. ED was a bully. It was hard to set those boundaries.
They, we’re even recording us, at times it was as if they were challenged us to point of wanting to provoke a physical encounter. I could relate to the person that called herself stupid for giving a baby gift. We a lot went through that with Christmas gifts. It was aweful. How could giving gifts turn into something so ugly and mean?
Those people are not safe people for us, at times it feels as if they would like to destroy us.
My husband is a flawed man, he is hurting me out of his pain. I believe God has shown me that. My question is how long do I keep trying to save someone who is not trying to save them self. He told me he was a stinking ship and not to go down with the ship. That I would meet someone else and he hoped I would. How heart breaking to hear your husband say such things.
Bottom line, I love all my flawed family and I love me in all my flaws too. I forgive them and I pray for them all. My goal is not to become biter and still have some of me left. And I will.
When these estrangement started to develop over two years ago, my goal then was to respond, loving, gracious and kind. And I would repeat that over and over in my head.
Even in a three hour counseling appointment with everyone. Only to have son-in-law dominate the hours, with threats of beating us up.
When we met with the counselor again after that, apologize to us. He was so sorry as to how that meeting went. He said he didn’t deserve that. He actually said out loud he was glad that God wasn’t his son-in-law. It was probably unprofessional to say that of him. But at the same time it was very validating. The saddest part for my husband and I, was that neither of our ED’s said anything in our defense.
It’s time to get out of bed iAnd start my day. Thank you again. Also to Needothers, thank you for you hopes. I believe in hope.
March 20, 2019 at 1:02 am #74854
While reading all these posts is painful, it gives me some peace that I am not alone. Both my sons are estranged from us. Only when they need something do they ever contact us. The oldest is very passive agressive and blames me for whatever grievances he has. He has nothing to do with his brother. We are not good enough for his wife, for her family. Unless they need a babysitter. So I do what I have to keep my grandson in my life. As you all know it is very painful. My other son seems lost in life and just left us. I cannot reach him anywhere.
This has been ebbing and flowing for more than 15 years since my oldest methis wife. I am done with trying to fix what I do not understand, I am done atoning for being the best mom I could be. I am done. I will always keep some hope or else I couldn’t go on. But I am done waiting.
Thanking for sharing your stories and your pain.
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