My Adult daughter has issues with me but won't tell me why?

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by susieqlandry, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. susieqlandry

    susieqlandry New Member

    I'm at my witts end actually, my adult daughter who is 31 married and has one child. I have done so much for them in there life and helped out with my grandson all the time when called to come help out. Mind you they are an hour away and don't come to my house because of the ride it's too long they tell me. I've helped them financually and emotionally. Then all of a sudden she stopped calling me, I will call her and she acts as though all is okay then I'll go visit and shes cold. She doesn't talk that much and avoids any conversation about anything to do with me and my husband were it doesn't involve her. She now stops emailing me which was once in a blue moon usually to ask for something but the point is now it's come to unless I call her to see my grandson I wouldn't see or hear from them. I honestly can't think of a thing I did wrong. When they do com eduring holidays she sits on her butt while I cook, clean and watch their son. Why would a daughter do that to her Mother. I find myself reading websites to find answers and praying to god she'll come to. What advice does anyone have for me.

    My mind says leave her be and let her get through this maybe if I let her be she'd she was she doesn't have, my heart tells me I've done something wrong and want to know what. I've never seen her so selfish and acts morre like ten then 31. My heart breaks all day thinking of it and I can't move on she's not one to come to me and tell me and I know if I ask she'll say oh nothing. I can't control my anger or emotions much longer but avoid confrontation for my grandsons sake.

    What advice does anyone have for me.

    Thank You
  2. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Hi, I feel so sad for you. I do not have this experience but did go thru a time when in my twenties that I was depressed and isolated from everyone, most especially my mom who was my best friend. I was crabby, workimg on stuff, and didn't give much thought to how she would feel.

    I wonder if it could be about her and something shes sorting out, not that you did anything. She is an adult and really all you can do is express your concern and let her know you miss her friendship and I suppose then let her know you'll give her space and you'll be there when she is wants to talk.
    That is if you do want to be there.

    What's her hubby like? Are they getting along? Any chance he's abusive and trying to put a wedge between you? Do they use any drugs or drink? Any of that could be and it could be hidden from you. So the only way I can see to get through this is to let her know once then say the serenity prayer.

    You deserve better and do not torture yourself about what you did. Everyone does stuff but adults talk it out. I really doubt its about you for real. (Though many of us know how it feels to be the target! )
  3. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Hi Susie, welcome. I'm sorry you are going through this with your daughter. I know you mentioned that she isn't one to come to you and if you ask she'll say there isn't anything wrong, yet, it seems it may be worthwhile to tell her you miss her and feel badly that a distance has developed between you and the distance is painful for you. You might want to make every attempt in a communication with her to not blame or judge and not assume that you did anything wrong, but simply to ask her what has to happen for you and she and your grandson to once again be close.

    In my opinion and experience these kinds of family issues can start out small and develop into something much bigger if left to fester and grow. As you both try to avoid the elephant in the room, the elephant just gets larger and more powerful. She may not know how to talk to you, often mothers and daughters have a very complicated relationship to begin with and it's not always easy to bring something into the light that's lived in the dark for a long time. If it were me, I would broach the subject with care, I would let her know I love her and miss her and would like to know what I could do to start a dialogue to mend fences. If you and she can't find a common ground and both would agree, you might look for a third party, a counselor, a therapist, clergy, a trusted friend who could be neutral, to help to guide you into talking to each other and trying to find a bridge to stand on to get your connection back.

    Being a daughter and a Mom and a grandmother to a granddaughter, I can attest to the complexities of these relationships and the work it takes to keep them loving and healthy. Don't wait any longer for something to happen, begin some kind of dialogue with her. And, just a word of caution about something I've had to work on as well, as mom's we can be critical and come off to our daughters as judgmental and controlling when to us, it feels like we're just trying to help, which to them feels like we don't think they know what they're doing, or we know better, it can create a gap between us. I would try to talk to her first. Keep posting and venting here, it helps to express your feelings and it helps us to know your whole story so we can better support you. I'm sorry you're experiencing this, I know how painful it can be. I hope you two can work it out. I'm sending you caring thoughts and gentle hugs................I'm glad you found us...........
  4. susieqlandry

    susieqlandry New Member

    I get along well with her husband there is no drinking and drugs, but I do see that she is trying to wedge her husband from his family too lately making more and more distance between them and I am inturn paying the price as though I am an example. I'm not sure what that is al about other than she's told me they are controling and pressure him to make certain decisions. in a nut shell she does not get along with them. I'm thankful for the replys it puts things in perspective more for me. I didn't mention that my birthday came and went and she texted me that morning instead of calling me. I'm letting it eat at me and I know I shouldn't but my emotions are all over the place. I love her with all my heart and can't understand.
  5. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Good morning Susie, thanks for clarifying some of Buddy's questions. It would help us to help you if you would put your bio at the bottom of your post as you see we all have done, that way we can recall your stats and better support you.

    Perhaps it might be helpful for you to seek some counseling to better understand your own feelings and to get help to guide you to a solution that will bring some clarity and resolution for you. Or a trusted friend, a spiritual adviser, someone whom you trust to listen well and offer you understanding and options. For me, I have found that a neutral party can often see things I can't and recommend ways of dealing with issues that I never thought of. In addition, you would get support for the feelings of loss, sorrow and anger you're feeling. Any issues with our children are fraught with so many emotionally charged feelings which can be overwhelming to try to wade through. We as parents have our expectations of how we think it should be and our children have their own expectations about how they think it should be and often those expectations are light years apart.

    Many of us on this board have sought counseling in one form or another to sort out the issues with our children. Without drugs, alcohol and I assume any mental health issues, you are in some ways fortunate because those issues make everything so much more difficult to deal with our kids. Of course, you must find your own way through this heartache, but I would encourage you to find a therapist so that you can find some peace about this and not let it "eat at you with your emotions all over the place." Whether or not you can resolve this issue with your daughter, you deserve to feel happiness and peace of mind, in spite of what is going on with your daughter. A trained professional can assist you in working through all your feelings. I've found that when I can do that, I have a much better chance then of communicating my feelings to the other party when the emotional charge on my part has been diminished enough that I can share how I feel in a healthy way where I am heard.

    I'm sorry about your birthday, that certainly is hurtful. Something is obviously up with your daughter and it's apparent how much you love her, it seems the path through this may require you to step outside of the situation to find a solution. It's easy to get trapped in all of the emotions we can feel and roll around in those feelings not knowing how to negotiate ourselves out. Trust your heart to find your answers.
  6. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Hello Susie. Can you not ask your daughter what is going on? For your sanity and peace of mind as much as the relationship. Nothing will be cleared up until you communicate and opening a dialogue with her may lead to all sorts of issues being aired and cleared.
  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi, Susie. I have had this happen to me and when I finally found out what was going on, it was a hodgepodge of strangeness and his own ideas of how he had been wronged. They weren't true, but they were his perception. I don't see him anymore...he was adopted at six and perhaps did not attach to us. He also is very financially successful so he doesn't need anything from us.

    Sometimes adult kids act like children around their parents. This in my opinion is especially true when the parent keeps taking on a strong parental role, as you have in taking care of her family, well past the age of twenty one. I would never have given you this advice when I was younger, but experience has told me that if she is unwilling to tell you what is wrong, perhaps it is best to concentrate on your grandson and let her work it out of her system. You have given her a lot and in my opinion it is selfish of her to suddenly give you the cold shoulder with no explanation. But will she suddenly be nice to you if she needs money again? in my opinion it is best to break this cycle of adult child dependence. It encourages this sort of teen-agerish behavior in our grown kids, especially if they are not really quite emotioinally grown up to their age level. I have a 34 year old son who is going through a divorce and was draining me...I have decided to detach and not be his (sometimes abusive) sounding board anymore.

    Is this your only child? Are you married? Do you have a support system? Is your daughter rather controlling herself and does she have problems getting along with a lot of people? To me, it sounds like it is more her than anything you've done. Very difficult people, if she is one, don't need much of a reason to get angry or hurt people that love them.

    It is probably something very silly that has your emotionally young daughter in a tizzy. If you can think of her as maybe still a child, perhaps you can just forget the anger and hurt (because young children can say hurtful things) and just focus on your grandson and others in your life who appreciate your kindness and love and do not hurt you in return. This is probably not the first time this daughter has hurt you and perhaps she could use some counseling, but maybe she won't get any. I do think, like the others, that counseling will help YOU.

    Sometimes to me it seems like the kindest parents, who give their all to their children, are the ones who get stepped on the most.

    Hugs and keep us posted.
  8. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    I'm so sorry. That sounds really difficult. You might want to find a really good family counselor and once you find this person ask if she(your daughter) would be okay with going to a few sessions of family counseling because you sense that something is wrong and you are hoping to make things right again. IF you go this route, avoid revealing how deeply hurt you are, etc. Keep it simple. Save it for a really good professional to help sort it out.
    This is a difficult situation, because you don't want things to worsen and you don't want her to not let you have access to your grandchild. I would also consider seeking counseling for yourself to help you cope with this difficulty. By the way, I agree...there is a good chance it is either totally or mostly something on her end that is bothering her and it is manifesting by her over-reacting to things you say and do. However, you can't really bring that to her attention. If you can get her to family counseling, that would be great. And again, if you can go to therapy will toughen you up to all of this.....don't think you are weak...this would be profoundly difficult for anyone!!!
  9. susieqlandry

    susieqlandry New Member

    I must say the forum is what I needed I read your posts at work this morning aand cryed something I haven't been able to do I hold it all in and build it all up swallow my pride and give in. She has issues with closeness and over the years I've seen her walk away from good friendships over meaningless things. She's very close to her sister who is 5 years younger then her but not exceptionally close to her brother who is 7 years younger she's very critical of all the things he does. I'm going to take your advice at this point seek counceling get stronger and then I will need to confront her. She is controlling in her relationship I know when she goes to visit his family she says she sits in the bedroom and reads because they do nothing for her and have no idea.( not sure what that is suppose to mean). She's snappy at times and I know she realizes she is hurting me and wants that to happen. So at this time i'm going to start walking forward and not step back take care of me and prey she see's the light before it's too late. Thank you all I do appreciate all you have to say and took it all in to my heart.
  10. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I'm going to jump right in here and say that if your screen name here is close to your real name, you probably want to change it. The CD board works best when you feel comfortable speaking your mind, and there have been times in the past when parents have been badly burned when their kids - young and adult - found what they were posting here and started HUGE fights involving family and friends.

    It's hard to know why your daughter is behaving this way without knowing a lot of background on you and her and your family dynamics. She is 31 years old, and capable of making her own decisions - even the bad ones. There are two things I would do immediately regarding this situation. First, I would not financially support her in any way. I would back off on any extravagances. How old is the grandchild? If he or she is old enough to go to the zoo or park, I'd make my visits about that rather than spend my time letting him watch her give me the cold shoulder. If she won't do that, I'd get a lawyer and go for grandparental rights visitation, but that is a ways from where you are. You have to exhaust other avenues first.

    The second thing I would do is find a good therapist to help you to not feel so badly about this. It's a wicked way to treat you, but this is about the type of person that she is, not the type of person that you are. My daughter is about your daughter's age, so we are probably at a similar age, as well. I know it was important for me to find things that made me get on with my own life and stop allowing my daughter to walk all over me.

    Good luck to you, and change your screen name!
  11. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Another thought...I was very close to my mother, which when I think about it, was a rarity among my friends. Most of my young adult friends who were female had some issue of some kind with their mother. One thing my mother did, right or wrong, is that she very very very rarely criticized me in any way. I'm sure there were times she had to bite her tongue. So, one that very rare occassion when she said something, she said it gently and I listened. I'm NOT saying that your criticized her particularly...but she might be over sensitive, etc. and just normal advice seemed like harsh words to her. I know that is how I saw some of my friends reacting. She might be under a lot of stress, much of it, you might not be aware of. Anyway, I know my mother, esp. in retrospect, really avoided saying anything negative to me or even corrected me. She always praised me. It was so rare that she gave me once a year (if I had to guess), that I always listened and appreciated it. It made our relationship stronger. Again, as an adult, now I realize she probably bit her tongue A LOT and tried her best not to sweat the small stuff when it came to saying anything to me about things she thought I was doing wrong, etc. I say this because I realize that lately I've been struggling to bite my tonque with things with my son and daughter in law. They are doing fine and sometimes I see small things I would like to comment on and realize that I'm just trying to help or make conversation and it could be taken the wrong way, esp. by a young person. I pray that I can be as wise as my mother was!!!

    If you want to change your name and don't know how, try to find Cheryl...aka...Runnawaybunny. You can find her mostly on the introductory threads (like Site Help and Resources). You can send her a private message. She should be able to help you make some kind of change to your name, if that is what you'd like to do.

    Fingers crossed that things improve soon for you with your daughter. Blessings.