Daughter pushes everyone away

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Gettin' Older, Jul 22, 2019.

  1. Gettin' Older

    Gettin' Older New Member

    I just don't understand my daughter. She is married with 3 children and a fantastic husband. All her life she has pushed people away emotionally. She delighted in making adults (teachers, church leader, camp directors, etc.) CRY. She has also been a chronic liar (even as an adult), especially after she reached about age 12 and up. When I talk with her on the phone she always finds a way to make me feel like a burden to her and she is only tolerating a short talk with me. She won't put her children on the phone so I can talk with them, always saying they are busy or in their room. I spoke with her husband this weekend about a completely different issue but he confided that she is having an affair and doesn't care that it hurts him. I have no words to help him and I am shocked she would do such a thing. She says she can't stand anyone to get close to her and feels no emotion for people or even family. She knows she should feel love, but she says she just doesn't have it in her for anyone. She has seen 4 therapists but as soon as she gets feeling like she can really open up, they move or quit to have a baby, etc. She says she is done with that and refuses to begin again with any more therapists. She is a "naturalist" so won't take any medications. I want nothing more than to be a good friend to our daughter and a grandmother to our grandchildren, but she stands in the way of that. Her husband loves my husband and me and wants the same for all of us. Any advice from people on here who have experienced similar? I am trying to detach emotionally from her because of the constant hurt and cruel words she yells at me just for calling. She says I don't understand her and she is right--I don't. Help please.
  2. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Getting' Older. I am so sorry for your pain. I wish I knew what to say, to make you feel better, but I don't.

    I do have an idea too. About 4 or 5 of us have bought the book Gifts of Acceptance by Miller. You can look for Busy's thread on this. She was the one who suggested it. We are going to have a book club thread as soon as the others of us get the book and have a chance to start. Why not get the book, too? Busy has said that reading this book has completely changed how she looks at her adult daughter, and her life, too.

    From what you write it sounds like a lot of your pain is coming from inability to accept your daughter as she is.

    I would love it if you joined us on the book club thread.
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  3. BusynMember

    BusynMember Active Member

    Sounds as if your daughter might have attachment disorder or maybe antisocial personality disorder, which does NOT mean she is a potential serial killer. It simply means the person doesn't connect with people like others do nor feel the emotions other people experience. Does she love her kids with a mother's passion? Was she adopted? Adoption can cause attachment problems, but anyone can be born without a range of normal emotions and lacking connection towards people. Sometimes there is no reason.

    This is not your fault. I am not sure she can properly love anyone and she has said as much so she knows. Perhaps therapy for you and learning to take care of yourself first would help you a lot because none of us can change another person, not even our children.

    I have a similar daughter and she is only responsive to us if we give her money. The friendliness only lasts for a week or until she asks for something more and we dare to decline. I don't believe my daughter loves anyone. So we decided to just move on and, no, its not easy. But we are less anxious now and focus on our marriage and other loved ones who do love us back. We are blessed with other children and close relatives beyond them.

    If God is in your life, do lean on God and pray for your daughter. I do that a lot. It is all I can do for her. And for me and my husband.

    Do buy the book. It is now my second Bible. It has helped me accept my daughter, even if I don't like how she is. Acceptance gives peace. The book really affected me. Be well.
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    Last edited: Jul 22, 2019
  4. Gettin' Older

    Gettin' Older New Member

  5. Gettin' Older

    Gettin' Older New Member

  6. Gettin' Older

    Gettin' Older New Member

    I would love to join the book club and read this book. I'll order it right now. by the way how did you get so wise? ❤
  7. Gettin' Older

    Gettin' Older New Member

  8. Gettin' Older

    Gettin' Older New Member

    I'm getting the book right now. You are amazing in your advise. Thank you.
  9. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    When people get into a pattern of self destructive behavior, it's hard to stop.
  10. Gettin' Older

    Gettin' Older New Member

    Update: It has now been another month and my daughter still will not speak to me. I want to speak with my grandchildren but she stands like a guard at the gate and won't allow any communication. I read the suggested book about detaching, but it sounds much easier to do than reality. What can I do? My text this morning has gone unanswered, just as any phone calls I have made. I want to speak with my grandchildren so much, but she won't allow communication. What can I do????
  11. WiseChoices

    WiseChoices Member

    There is nothing you can do, unfortunately, other than to let go and focus on you .I know this is heartbreaking. When my son refused to see me , I went through a lot of grief . It was very , very painful.
  12. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    There is a reality here. It does not mean it will always be so. But for right now it is. She will not talk to you or allow you to speak with her children. Because she does not want to. That is reality.

    You search and search for a way to make this reality disappear or get out of the way. Until you accept that there is nothing you can do to change this reality you will feel terrible. There seems to be a certain stubbornness and denial on your part, I think, the belief that there exists a way that you have control over what she does. You don't. You have no control. You only have the potential to control you.

    But you can only have control over your you, if you accept reality. Which it seems that you do not want to accept. That is a choice. You can keep refusing to accept reality, denying reality, and insisting that you can make it go away. But as long as you do, you will suffer.

    The only way to stop suffering is to accept reality. That your daughter can do whatever she wants, no matter whether it hurts you or not. No matter if it hurts her kids. No matter if it hurts her husband. She can do exactly what she wants. And she is doing it. She can do whatever she wants whether it is right or wrong, hurtful or not. That's her right. Your only power is to remove yourself from her hurting her.

    And you can do whatever you want. Except not with her.

    This does not mean that this will not change. But you are not the one who can change it. Only she can. Or time.

    Why not give this some time? Stop calling her. Stop texting her. Start acting on your own behalf. Do things you love to do. Seek out new activities. Divert your attention from this. Let her be. Let it go. For now.
  13. BusynMember

    BusynMember Active Member

    I am with Copa. I do not see that you have any other choice. There are no magic words and you can not control another human being, not even a beloved child. Even if it hurts you to the bone. I have felt this searing pain myself.

    If you like, look up Radical Acceptance. This has helped me so much with my own daughter.

    There is no legal way to force this either. I have looked into this.

    Be well. God bless.