Problems with adult children

Posted by junkartist @junkartist, May 18, 2021

I haven't posted for a long time. Problems with adult children got worse. My youngest had my husband and I, plus his two siblings read a book called, "Running on Empty, How to Recover from Emotional Neglect". We did and had an online conversation with my youngest child, which was enlightening and showed me problems of which I was unaware/

The author of the book wrote that many good people could cause emotional neglect, but proceeded, in my opinion to be brutally critical of parents.

My other two children are not communicating with me for reasons of their own. It has about broken me.

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Thank you. Our children seem to think there is some book that we had and did not purposely follow. Many of us either repeated our parents or were raising them by the seat of our pants while we too were trying to mature. My daughter and I are estrangled. She disowned me many years ago in her teenage years. Yet, due to my driving her back and forth from the South to the North when she was younger, she learned the boundaries of NYC did not have to restrict her and as a result, she has gone farther than I could imagine. She has traveled to the Caribbean, Paris, and now lives in Nevada having been a traveling nurse and not afraid to go where they send her. She became a traveling nurse and now a baby nurse, RN which the background she selected to return to would not have had her striving to become someone of that profession. Ultimately, we are in my opinion tasked with the responsibility of raising our children to be independent, viable citizens of society. We hope they won't go out into the world and without having taught them how to learn from their decisions boomerang back to us for us to support them as adults. Although far from a perfect parent, the excuses that won't be shared here are very much part of why she is independent, a viable citizen, and contributing to society. Everything else and whether she eventually forgives me for what I did not know then. What was beyond my control or knowledge is up to her. At her age of 42 and I approaching 65 shortly, I feel at times, even when her decisions and life choices sadden me, I have done my job back then the best I knew how so the burden of guilt is not one I wrestle with daily.

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@aislinn2 I am in the same and can totally relate. My oldest daughter is 43 and I am 77. Unfortunately she bore the brunt of my ineptitude in parenting, but I too flew by the seat of my pants. Had no support whatsoever from anyone - not even my husband at the time.

I learned from our mistakes with my first and applied what I learned to the two who came after, but made new mistakes with each.

We lived and learned … but it is difficult for our kids to relate.


My previous story coming to an end, son called to say his wife is divorcing him, he was served papers. Unfortunately she wants full support, child custody and maintenance ( alimony); ( they are living apart without a legal separation but child support papers, which he pays as well as partial payment for daycare). She will not let us see our granddaughter. She is supporting herself with pole dancing despite having 3 licenses for beautician, barber & manicure work. Son cannot afford lawyer and can’t use legal aid services because she is! Despite my reservations I told him get this mess resolved asap.


These stories are not a "nice" read. But children do not come with instructions and you can only do the best you can. My youngest son and his family have thrown me under the bus. There is no communication. However I still have a close relationship with my older son. Go figure. I now know why I made mistakes. During grief counselling my therapist diagnosed me with complex PTSD due to childhood abuse from my mother. I finally got the courage to leave her and moved far away. I call myself a survivor but yet I made mistakes because of her still being in my head. I sent my youngest son a long email and acknowledged the mistakes I made and accepted responsibility for them and apologized. But still this did not help. On the other hand, when I shared my diagnosis with my older son, he was so supportive and just asked why didn't you tell us? A cousin of mine shared with me that her middle son and wife have broken off communications with her. It all hurts and we do what we can but it still hurts.

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