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Question
Posted by: kathy | 2007/12/24

adult kids ignore me

My adult kids think I'm the worst mother that ever lived and totally ignore me. My oldest feels that I never made him feel appreciated and took advantage of him. My parents and siblings know that I have always spoiled him. He is bi-polar and his wife seems to have periods of depression. They in turn have my other two children convinced that they need to follow their example and also ignore me. I have grandchildren that I am not allowed to see. No amount of trying to resolve this has helped, and to make matters worse, my husband died three years ago, and since then the kids get together without me. I don't know how to cope with this. Also, most all of my married friends have gone their own way, as now I am single and don't seem to fit in. I spend most of my time with my mother who needs help and is supportive of me and am dating a wonderful man, but nothing feels right without my kids. How do I cope with this?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Sorry to hear about this, kathy --- it must be deeply disappointing and sad. It sounds as though what they are doing is indeed cruel and unking and ungrateful. But it may well be that the more you pursue them, the more they withdraw. Maybe ignoring them for a time may paradoxically make it easier for a leter rapprochement to occur.
I agree with anon that if you haven't had the chance face-to-face to tell them how you feel and how much you regret this situation, writing a letter to them all might be useful. But not pleading, and not too emotional --- just to calmly state the facts, and to leave the door open for later positive developments. THen concentrate on the good things you do have, and on developing new friends --- there are many divorced and widowed/ widowwered people in every agee-group who experience some similar difficulties in finding friends.

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Our users say:
Posted by: anon | 2007/12/24

Kathy you find yourself in a very difficult place. YOu know you tried your best for your children. They are now adults and make their own choices. Sounds like you do have supportive mother and man in your life. You still feel very hurt, abandoned and rejected by your children. Its hard but you need to give them space and time. What they are doing to their children depriving them of their grandmother, is not your doing. Have you told them how YOU feel. Perhaps writing them a letter.

At this time of the year especially, it must be hard because you will think of your nearest closest and dearest and children and grandchildren must have a special place in your heart, they are part of you. Its normal for you to feel the way you do.

Try to focus on what you DO have, you have your mom and this wonderful man. You can not carry the guilt and blame yourself for your childrens behaviour.

Practice tough love.

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