Posted in Adult Child Estrangement, Deciding to Make Contact with the Estranged Person, Estranged Adult Children - The Heartbreak & Sorrow, Parental Alienation PA, Post Estrangement, Renate Dundys Marrello - Post Estrangement, Silence of Family Estrangement

When the Ties That Bind Unravel

When the Ties That Bind Unravel

“We live in a culture that assumes if there is an estrangement, the parents must have done something really terrible,” said Dr. Coleman, whose book “When Parents Hurt” (William Morrow, 2007) focuses on estrangement. “But this is not a story of adult children cutting off parents who made egregious mistakes. It’s about parents who were good parents, who made mistakes that were certainly within normal limits.”

Dr. Coleman himself experienced several years of estrangement with his adult daughter, with whom he has reconciled. Mending the relationship took time and a persistent effort by Dr. Coleman to stay in contact. It also meant listening to his daughter’s complaints and accepting responsibility for his mistakes. “I tried to really get what her feelings were and tried to make amends and repair,” he said. “Over the course of several years, it came back slowly.”

Therapists for years have listened to patients blame parents for their problems

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Posted in Adult Child Estrangement, Deciding to Make Contact with the Estranged Person, Estranged Adult Children - The Heartbreak & Sorrow, Estranged Adult Children Part 1 of 2, Parental Alienation PA

Done With The Crying-by Sheri McGregor M.A. (Author)

Done With The Crying: Help and Healing for Mothers of Estranged Adult Children Paperback – May 3, 2016

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Posted in Adult Child Estrangement, Deciding to Make Contact with the Estranged Person, Estranged Adult Children - The Heartbreak & Sorrow, Estranged Adult Children Part 1 of 2, estranged parent., Estrangement, Estrangement & Being Cut Off, ESTRANGEMENT FROM ADULT CHILDREN, Family Estrangement, Parental Alienation PA, parents of estranged adult children

If I’m no longer a mother, then what am I?

by Sheri McGregor, M.A.

It’s a question I hear often after an adult child’s estrangement. Among the more than 9,000 mothers who have answered my survey for parents of estranged adult children, or reached out in site comments or in emails, hundreds ask the same or a similar question.

Even the busiest mothers go out of their way for their adult children. Sometimes, mothers even say their lives revolved around them, as if they’ve been on-call.

For some, the question has layers of complexity that make the situation even more heartbreaking. Like when grandchildren are involved, which makes the loss even more cruel and sad.

Grandmothers picture the sweet, innocent faces of the grandchildren their estranged son or daughter has ripped away, and worry what awful picture is being painted about them. That they’re crazy? Or worse, that they don’t care? Those women may ask, if I’m no longer the devoted grandmother, always there and ready to help, then who am I?

read the full answer to this question and many more on this website:- http://www.rejectedparents.net/category/answers-to-common-questions/

Posted in Deciding to Make Contact with the Estranged Person, Estranged Adult Children Part 1 of 2, estranged parent., Parental Alienation PA, parents of estranged adult children, PARENTS OF ESTRANGED ADULT CHILDREN EVERYWHERE, The Estranged Adult Prodigal ~ by Lynda Stevens

Parents Cut Off by Adult Children

In the newspaper advice column Annie’s Mailbox by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, there has recently been a series of letters from the parents of adult children who have cut them out of their lives. The parents complain that they have absolutely no idea why and do not understand what made this happen, and they seem to indicate that they had been just model parents or, at worst, guilty of some very minor parental transgressions.

Lately, a couple of other letter writers opined that just perhaps the parental behavior was a lot more problematic than these folks would have the world believe. For the most part, whenever I delve into the family dynamics of those patients who either cut off parents or who have been cut off like this, that is almost always the case.

In reading the letters from the parents who just cannot seem to figure out why their children have cut them off, a question arises. Are they really that clueless? Are they, as people are wont to say “in denial?” – whatever that means?  To me, “denial” of reality is just – how should I put this? – lying.

Parents Cut Off by Adult Children

Posted in Deciding to Make Contact with the Estranged Person

Deciding to Make Contact with the Estranged Person

Knowing when and how to make contact: If you choose to make contact with the person you’re estranged from and you have done as much of your own inner work as you can, you have a number of ways to move forward, but premature contact may be unwise. However, mistakes that occur with premature contact may also be good teaching experiences.

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These mistakes help you to be clear about what you really want to do and what is wise for you to do. My therapist asked a good question as a guideline: “Who are you making this contact for, yourself of the other person?” Let prayer undergird anything you do and provide a way to listen for the best way to make contact. Several ways to make contact are possible, depending on your comfort level and the willingness of the other person.

One is to write a letter of amends (the essay on forgiveness as a process contains an illustration of this) which you either send or simply write for its own sake. This works best when you write it as a vehicle for your own amends and not as a way to get the other person to make amends.

Another approach is to do a ritual of forgiveness that you do not tell the other person about but that will have an affect on the relationship because it releases something in you. Some people reconcile in the presence of therapists, one for each member of the conflict, representing that person but having everyone’s interests at heart. Others meet alone with the person they are estranged from, although this can be risky if either party is not healed enough to be responsible for his or her own feelings.

Still other people do something special for the person, or give something special, to show that their heart is open. A genuine act of love with no expectations in return is powerful for the giver and the receiver. But again, this works best when people do it for themselves and for its own sake, not with the expectation of a response. Sometimes it takes years before an act of grace is acknowledged, and it may even heighten the friction in the short run.

Once you make the first step, a waiting time occurs, and this is when you have to release the other person. If there is to be any contact, it will come in time and within a process. You have done what you could and that is enough. Just keep reminding yourself that you have done what you could. Reconciliation is wonderful when it happens, but it is not an all-or-nothing experience. People often find only a hint of reconciliation, or find nonverbal reconciliation. A reconciliation event may last a few minutes or an hour, and then the relationship may resume with much, but not all, of its previous dynamic.

If any kind of mutual reconciliation has occurred, both of you will know that something is different. Some relationships do ultimately heal, and they are transformed in the process. Any level of reconciliation is sheer grace. And sometimes reconciliation means that you acknowledge what happened, make some kind of amends and have no further contact with the other person. This too can be a deeply healing experience.

So reconciliation is complex, but just being on the journey of reconciliation is so vital to our emotional and spiritual health that any level of change adds to our lives.

https://atriversedge.wordpress.com/2012/01/08/anatomy-of-estrangement-and-reconciliation/