Feeling upset...

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by toughlovin, Jun 6, 2019.

  1. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    with my daughter. The daughter who has it together and is doing really well in her life. I met with her today for breakfast. I was talking about her grandparents (my inlaws) and made some comment about seeing them. She doesnt really care for them much and doesnt like the family gatherings. These are my in-laws and I totally get why, they all kind of drive me nuts too. But they are still her grandparents and my husbands parents.

    Her comment today was she was not going to go if her brother didnt also have to go. You have to make him go too. Now for various reasons she and her brother do not have a relationship and dont communicate.... she is now willing to be in the same room I guess.

    But honestly we have bent over backwards to be understanding of her boundaries around him. I get those.

    Now she is telling me its not fair.... and darn it none of this is about fairness.

    I have a good relationship with her and there are many things we do with her that we don’t with my son.

    I have talked to my son about seeing “the family” and he has flat out said he wont do it..... and to be honest I dont want to fight with him and its ridiculous to think I can make him do that or anything else. He doesnt care really about how I feel.

    She does and so feels I guilt trip her into going and I guess that is the boundary she is trying to set. But honestly sometimes this mantra about how you guilt trip me means I dont get to say how I feel.

    The conversation ended badly....with me basically telling her the irony is she doesn’t want to be like her brother but she is now being an a** just like him. That of course made her mad.

    I know I am rambling here....but I am trying to get a handle on this. It seems to me her setting boundaries on her relationship with him is different than saying I am not going to go see the extended family because I dont like them much (they have never done anything to her except cared about her) when that action is hurtful to her parents and to her grandparents who are in their 90s.

    Anyone else have issues with their healthy together children being resentful of the expectations you have of them vs the expectations you dont really have of your more difficult child?

  2. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    My "normal" kids are very resentful of all the attention and extra stuff we did to encourage Kay to live better, both as a child and adult. They havent set any boundaries around her, but they don't have good relationships with her. And we get reminded of how much we have given her AND about how she isnt even nice to us. Its hard for all of us.
  3. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Hi TL

    You didn't ask but I will volunteer my opinion. I think our children have the right to decide about these things, however irresponsible and even mean their decisions may be. Clearly your daughter does not have the experience or maturity to understand that this is bad behavior, but nonetheless I feel that it is her mistake to make. I understand that you would be distressed by this. But I understand too that she would be resentful, if you pressure her, however ill-advised her decision may be.

    She may be trying to assert herself vis a vis you, her mother. She may feel this to be a control and autonomy issue. It may be if you back off, she will do what you want her to, and go through with the visit. You had your say. She had hers. I would try to leave it at that. Sorry to butt in.
  4. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    Copa I always appreciate your opinion. I think to some extent you are right....but what bothers me is she is making it about her brother. She will go if he goes....and yet they dont have a relationship she doesnt really want to be around him. To me it is confusing issues.... I actually think she knows she should go sometimes and for that reason has gone in the past.... but since we arent making him go (In reality I cant make either of them go) she wont go either. Her reasoning is it isn’t fair.... well a lot of things arent fair. We dont take our son travelling with us and we do take her. I am backing off for now....Any further conversation should involve my husband because it is his parents and family we are talking about.

    I think part of what I am feeling is a bind parents in our situation find ourselves in. She resents that he gets away with stuff and that we even have a relationship with him. Because of that, and because I know she doesnt want to hear it, I dont share with her all of my agnst and worry and what he puts us through. She knows plenty. But I partly resent that she adds the stress of my worrying about her reaction to what is already a very stressful situation for me. Bottom line she doesnt really understand whats its like to be a mother in this situation... and probably wont understand my feelings until she is a mother herself.And as much as I would like her to understand I would wish these kind of problems on her or heaven forbid her children.

  5. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member


    She is being a brat. You don't deserve this. I get it. Her reasoning is both illogical and indefensible. She is using her brother, against you, like a battering ram. And it is hypocritical. She is indifferent at best about his well-being, and even less about being around him. Of course you are upset. You're upset because she is doing the wrong thing, vis a vis her grandparents, vis a vis you, vis a vis herself and vis a vis her brother. There is nothing to be happy about here. Of course you are disappointed in her. And she has dug in. It's not a good look.

    But it's one moment in time. One bad decision. She deserves a chance to be wrong. That is my point.

    I have mentioned a number of times on this site, that I worked in a study many years ago, of siblings of sufferers of cystic fibrosis. The point being, when one child uses up so much of the oxygen in a family, there are consequences for the other kids. Actually I think it is a good sign that daughter is able to be so outright impossible. Better that than to hold it in.

    I am thinking about you and nobody else. Your welfare. The best thing for YOU is to let it go. It is not that I don't understand or sympathize with your feelings. It is because I DO.

    Of course you would want a unified and united family, to have both kids together, to have everybody together. And her attitude is just rubbing salt in the wound.

    Would it be that she could show compassion for you...For what you have been through.

    You don't need this from her. Sigh. But what about our situation is FAIR? All of it is unfair. For you. For her. For son. (For me and my own son).

    I do not think your daughter has the where with all to understand what you go through. I don't think she has the where with all to understand what her brother has gone through. How could she? Blessedly, she has not had this experience.

    You are torn in two trying to be what each of them needs, and to have full and complete relationships with both of them, despite the water under the bridge. You are a hero. But neither one of your kids can see it. But we do.

    There is no reconciling any of this, with her. You will not get what you need. She cannot give it right now at this point in her life.

    I think you are wise to let this go for your husband to handle.

    Personally, I believe she very well gain some insight on this if you back off.
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2019
  6. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    I know just how you feel. My middle son refuses to show up if my older son goes to a family gathering. Will not come to my house if he is coming. Blames his brother for making his childhood difficult. My and my husbands parents are gone but we still have a christmas get together with my brothers family. The relationship between my sons has made it so awkward i chose not to go this year. I know that hurt their feelings but i just couldn't handle it. I was wrong not to go . i think you should go and try to have fun and let your kids worry about themselves. They are adults and are responsible for their own decisions. It is a shame that our wayward children have such an impact on everybody in the family. I think if i could go back in time I would not have children. I love them but i am tired of all the drama.
  7. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    I agree to go even if your children don't. We can't control them. I don't think kids these days care as much about family as they once did and as it is a societal issue, we cant appeal to their consciences. All over the internet they read "if your family is toxic, just walk away." And it happens. Maybe it always did and just seems a bigger issue now. More focus on it.

    Young people are often disconnected and unloving toward parents. Its no big deal. Parents nowadays are wise to take care of ourselves first.
  8. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    Thanks all....and yes Copa she is being a brat! I am staying silent. I suspect she will too but then we will see her on fathers day.
  9. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    Just thought I would update you on this....I saw my daughter last weekend and it felt tense to me....obviously we both had feelings but didnt talk about it. Tonight she called and said we needed to talk about it and we had a good very long talk. The bottom line is she doesn’t want me speaking for my husband, if he feels strongly about her seeing his parents then he needs to tell her himself. My hubby is not goog expressing his emotions but she is right I shouldnt be getting in the way and trying to do it for him. It is when I do that she feels “guilt tripped”. I get that and she is right. I was clear about my feelings about things and the whole thing feels much better and resolved. Pnew.