Estranged Parent from Adult Daughter

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Estranged Parent from Adult Daughter

Post by Qbanita_01 »

I have been battling with my emotional pain and confusion as to why my daughter treats me so badly. We were very close for 35 years and all of a sudden she cut me out of her life, belittling me with verbal abuse and keeping my grandkids from me for quite a while - which was 4 years ago. If I wanted to see them or talk to them, I had to make an appointment with her. She controlled when I could talk to them and when I could see them. But when she needed help, she had no qualms about calling me and of course, I always said yes, jumping at the chance to see the kids. She continued to treat me, despite paying for her car (which is now paid for) and her husband's car. This past July, I made the last payment on his car and not even a "thank you." In the past, her husband asked me, "how can you stand her when she treats you so badly?" There particular relationship is very bad and I feel as though I'm paying for it. Over the past 10 years, he has cheated on her and always came to me for help and support. I was always there and everytime recommended they go to counseling. The last time he cheated on her was 4.5 years ago and after they reconciled, she cut me out of her life.

Since then, I have continued to try to always be loving and neutral, but very guarded. I feel like I walk on eggs with her, but I love my grandkids so very much. I have no husband and my parents have passed. My son is very close to me, but not to his sister because she had treated him so badly when they were growing up. There are 6 years between them and he is younger. When she tried to reconcile their relationship, my son no longer wanted to as he didn't trust her. My kids, a 90 year-old aunt, and my grandkids are all I have left and family is very important to me.

I invited my grandkids to go to a cabin on September 27. My son-in-law thought it was a great idea and my daughter immediately said,"no." But a few days later, I got a text saying they were all wanting to go. It was a really nice weekend in the mountains and we all had a nice time. A few days later, I got a text asking if I could watch my two eldest grandkids because they had no school. I said, "yes, of course!" When I went to pick them up (they live only 2 miles away) my grand daugther was not quite ready. I went to hug her and noticed 3 huge, beautiful family collages my daughter had made hanging on the wall. The collages were about 4.5'x3.5' There were about 100 photos on each collage depicting a timeline of the birth of the kids and family. My in-laws and their family were in the photos holding the children, and celebrating holidays. I was not in one single photo. I felt as though I didn't exist. As I stood there with my 15-year-old grand daughter I said, "oh, I'm not in any of these pictures" She said, "of course you are Nana." We stood together looking through them and she saw that I was not in a single photo." My heart dropped and I felt so sick, I wanted to just run from the house and hide. I felt so hurt and ashamed that my grand daughter would witness such a thing her mother had done and wondered if his family had also seen this. Before I knew it, I said, "I guess I'm not family." I told my daughter I would meet her and her brother in the car. I went to the car and gathered my strength to put on a happy face for my grandkids. I made sure we had a nice day and spoil them with their favorite treats. I made sure I took them home so I wouldn't have to see my daughter.

Just yesterday I received an email that she is hosting Thanksgiving dinner and I was invited. I truly do not want to go. The emotional rollercoaster she has had me on over these past years had finally come to a head as I feel that her creating a family collage, excluding me and her brother was a testament to her feelings. I wanted to say something, but I truly feel I can't survive another blow or another one of her outbursts. My best friend says that I need to live out my elder years in peace and just move on - that I have many friends that love me and are my family. I would like to know what I should do - I don't want to lose my grandkids, but I can't tolerate being abused by her.
Beth McHugh
Posts: 206
Joined: Tue May 26, 2009 9:47 am

Re: Estranged Parent from Adult Daughter

Post by Beth McHugh »

Hi Qbanita,
I'm sorry this situation has arisen between you and your daughter, as it is so painful to lose a child via poor behavior. Have a think back to when the relationship was better. Did you notice behaviors prior to her "changing" that actually began earlier but occurred less frequently? Was there an event that you can identify that triggered the change in your daughter?
Try asking your son the same questions since he does not want to see hsi sister because she is not nice to him either. Ask him if he noticed a sudden change or whether it was gradual.

As your daughter is also having difficulties with her partner, it seems that your daughter is experiencing problems of some sort that may have nothing to do with you as a person, even though there are directed at you. Does your daughter love her job? Does she have treat her children well or is she controlling of them? Do they walk on eggshells around her, for example. Do you think your daughter respects her partner? If you get back to me with these answers, that may shed some light on what is happening.

Best wishes,

ImageBeth McHugh
B.Sc (Hons). B.Psych. Dip.Sc.
Principal, Your Online Counselor
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