Detachment parenting

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by lovelyboy, Dec 26, 2013.

  1. lovelyboy

    lovelyboy Member

    Hi all! Sorry for this negative post just after Christmass!
    I started reading up about detachment parenting....Mostly it seems to be used with children who has addictions?
    As you know we are going through a rough time with our pre teen at the moment!
    I feel frightend because in my spirit it feels as if with every argument, verbal abuse, ext, I am detaching emotionally more and more from my son! It's as if the road back to feeling love becomes more and more difficult! Its like numbness..... No trust, no nothing.
    Has any of you dealt with this before? I know I am suppose to remind myself that he struggles with social judgement and insight, but it doesnt change my reality.
    I am just trying to gain some control in this situation and maybe trying to protect myself? If I care less, give less...then the absence of resiprocity might hurt less?
  2. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    Detachment from child who is a minor (and very young, like in your case) is very problematic. Young child needs attachment to develop emotionally and morally. If parent is detached and child doesn't have any other adult to have an attached relationship, it very likely does cause a child serious emotional and psychological damage. It also makes a child very vulnerable to any adult outside home who offers attachment.

    And if you consider how detachment is done with adult children, it simply doesn't work with a minor child you are responsible with. If one does things recommended when trying to detach from adult child to minor child, it is called neglect.

    However, I do very well understand the feeling. But I would call it burning out. It does cause feelings of detachment, cynical attitude and things like that in early state. Those are usually the first warning signs of the burn out. You may want to check out some information about that and get yourself some support, if you feel like that could be happening to you. Parenting a challenging child is a straining job, getting burn our is a real threat.

    During the most difficult times with my son, when he was still a child, I did compartmentalized a lot. I actually made sure I used some time every day to think warm and fuzzy thoughts of my son. I did go to his room when he was sleeping or listened behind his door and tried to find those loving feelings I did have for him from the day he was born. Tried to see him as a small child needing his mommy, which he actually was, and not just that absolutely maddening and slyly oppositional and backstabbing person he was when awake. I tried to detach myself emotionally from his behaviours, but not from him. Tried to see him as my dear child, who was having these behavioural problems and tried to see his behaviours like symptoms and not 'a real him.' I did try to intellectualised my reactions to his behaviours and detach from my emotions those behaviours caused. Some of it did help.
  3. lovelyboy

    lovelyboy Member

    Thanx SuZir! Yes, I think you helped me to put my feelings in perspective! Its emotional detachment....not physical! And I will try and aply your advice....I do try and do it, but I think the holiday is getting a bit long! Has bee in each others company as a family for almost 5 weeks 24/7!!!!
  4. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    Yes, holidays are bad. It is much easier to find those warm and fuzzy feelings when you have a bit time away from the constant chaos. When they are very, very young and you don't have time away from them at all, it is when they sleep (I started those techniques already when my difficult child was a tiny baby. He had an awful colic and his babyhood was very tough and exhausting to me and my husband.) When they get older and are either in day care or school, it helps a lot. But longer breaks can then wear anyone out.

    I don't know if you work or if you are stay at home mom. In either case, try to have some alone time. Maybe a walk or run with the dogs, or if you have your home for you alone in some point daily, just nice cup of coffee and a mag, or something. Just try to do it everyday and not to think your kids or anything particular at all. That already helps a lot. And try to do that mental exercise and think those warm feelings about both of your kids (and about your husband too, that is helpful also) right after that. It is easier that way. And at least for me it actually did help during the hard times. Also helped to keep my marriage intact.

    Even though my kids, or husband, is not causing me too much stress right now, I still do that daily. I also often add some of my friends or relatives to my thoughts. I have just found it is good for me and my mental well being too, and not just helping me not to strangle my kid.


    From your description, I think I'm in the early stages of burn out.

    Sent from my iPhone using ConductDisorders
  6. greenrene

    greenrene Member

    I got to the point where I was in full-on burnout with no recourse and very little if any support - people actually blamed me for difficult child's issues. I felt myself detaching, and I couldn't stop it - it was my own sense of self-preservation kicking in. I lived that way for years while difficult child continued to make life hell. Thank God for the boarding school, because I have no idea where I'd be right now if she still lived in my home.
  7. Confused

    Confused Guest

    I havent gone thru this but understand how hard it is to have constant issues and stress. But I agree, once you can spend some more time apart, maybe activities for your son where he can be around other adults to help watch him will help. See what you can do for yourself and find something to help you relax. I know, thats never easy but I wish you luck. Hugs
  8. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I can totally relate. Sending gentle hugs your way.
  9. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I hear you!
    When I used to fly to Minn to help take care of my dad, who had Alzheimer's, I actually looked forward to it. How's that for perspective? It was SO EASY.