New to site: Had to finally make a decision about my only daughter aged 38

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by mermaid, Jul 16, 2011.

  1. mermaid

    mermaid New Member

    I finally had to make the hardest decision in my life and stop communicating with my only child. My daughter is 38yo, married, had 2 near adult children and 3 step-children. This is her 2nd marriage.
    Just a little background...I was married to her father for 24 yrs. He was verbally abusive towards us, unfaithful and it got worse as the years went on. I finally made a decision to ask for a divorce from him. He committed suicide the next day. My daughter and her 1st husband and children moved in with me after her Dad's death. My son who was 3 years younger than her did the same thing. Mind you, my kids were adults when this happened. I met another man very quickly on the internet and he and his two children moved in with me also.
    My house was so full of people, noise and clutter I finally couldn't stand it any longer and gave my daughter and son money to rent somewhere else to live. My daughter was going through my money faster than I could earn it. She spend over $2000.00 in one month supposedly on groceries. There was no way. She was a stay at home mom and it was agreed at the time since i worked full time, she would cook and clean for the rest of us. After a few weeks of this, she said she couldn't do it anymore. So I not only had to do the cooking and cleaning and work full time, I had 9 people living in a 3 bedroom house. Now you can probably see why I had to say enough was enough.
    She has always had problems with my husband. No matter what he does, he's mistreating her in her mind. He has problems with her because he doesn't feel like she shows me any respect. We have had an on and off again relationship since I remarried. Yes, I did marry the man I met online and we have been happily married now for 13 years. He had custody of his two children and I basically raised them. They were 8 and 10 when we married. They are both adults now with one being married with two small children and the other is in the military full time. They both treat me better than my own daughter or grandchildren.
    My grandson is in the military full time also now and my granddaughter is going to be a senior in high school. My step-grandchildren I see once in a while and the youngest always treats me very well. The other two don't have much to say about anything really. They range in age from 10 to 16. My daughter left her first husband and two children about a year after her dad died. She started running around with other men and would leave with them for weeks at a time. My son-in-law at that time did very well with the children and we worked together to be sure they were taken care of. My daughter finally came back home and wanted to live with me. My husband said "no, she needs to go home and decide what to do from there." I told her at the time, she was 25yo with two small children, she needed to start acting like a grown up, take responsibility for her actions and think about her children. She got very mad at me but she did go to college, got a divorce and took over her children's care again. She remarried a man that was full time military. He rules her life in every aspect.
    I like him, but I don't like how he treats her sometimes. I also think he is overbearing with my grandchildren and between the two of them, they have poisoned the grandkids from their father and from my husband and I. When my grandson went into the service I wrote him weekly because I knew he needed to hear from people at home. Now he is stationed in another state and won't answer my emails or letters. He was home on leave two weeks ago and I had asked my daughter to please let me know when he was home so we could make the trip to visit. I found out on facebook the day after he went back to base that he had been home. I send Christmas and birthday gifts with no thank yous or acknowledgements from them. I treat the step grandchildren the same way. There is a catch here, and that is my grandchildren only have one blood related grandparent alive and that's me. They treat their step grandparents great because they are always with my son-in-laws large family. We live 2 hrs away from each other and I'm lucky to see my family twice a year but every holiday they spend with his family out of state.
    One more thing, my son committed suicide 6 years ago. He was always very good to my husband and me. He loved his step siblings and spent a lot of time with them. My daughter doesn't even acknowledge the youngest stepson for birthday or Christmas but she does his sister and her children.
    So, basically I have lost my only surviving child and my only blood related grandchildren.
    I decided today that after 7 weeks of no communication from my daughter or grandchildren it was time to cut it off because it hurts too much to wonder from day to day what I have done to deserve this. I see them all the time on facebook but they have no communication with me so I took them off my facebook also.
    My husband, daughter and son all were diagnosed with being bipolar. My husband had a mild form of it, my son and daughter were a bit worse. She won't admit she has it so doesn't take medication for it and the only time, it seems, that she contacts me is when she is in crisis and depressed to the point she can't function. My son went through a very hard time after his father's death and became an alcoholic. Talk about dysfunctional! If I didn't have my current husband to stand by me and treat me so good, I would probably be in a grave somewhere also.
    I became disabled last year and had to quit working. Because we no longer had my salary, we lost our home that I had owned for over 20 years. I do have to say my daughter and son-in-law came and helped us move. I gave them everything that was her father's and all of my antiques and family heirlooms at that time. We also paid for their gas that they used. I now feel like it was just to get at our valuables because her Dad had been a woodworker hobbiest and I gave her all of the glassware I inherited from both her father's side and my side of the family because we moved into a smaller home. I just didn't have room to display it anymore and I felt she should have it now and be able to enjoy it instead of us storing it. I also gave her all the fine jewelry her father had given me, several large appliances and anything else she wanted, clothes, furnishings, etc. Now....I feel totally used since she is back to no communication again. I thought we had worked on our problem areas and for about a year we were getting along great. After we moved, this all started again.
    There's so much more to this story but I will stop here. This gives you an idea of my life in the last 14 yrs. My question is, will my grandchildren ever wise up or will they always go by the lies that have been fed to them over the years? Will they remember how their grandmother and their father were there for them until they were about 10yrs old?
  2. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Welcome. I am truly sorry that you have had so much stress and tragedy in your life. on the other hand, it is wonderful that you have a caring husband at your side for the future. It is difficult to accept that for your own health you must detach from your daughter but obviously you have done everything you could possibly do. Are you familiar with the Serenity Prayer? It is famously used the Alcoholics Anonymous and my Dad taught it to me over fifty years ago. For me it is very helpful and has alot of wisdom. Rarely does a day go by that I don't repeat it in my head. It is short. God grant me the serenity to accept the things I can not change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. You are utilizing some of those skills in distancing yourself from your daughter. Perhaps it will help you not worry about what the future will bring with the grandchildren. I hope so. Good luck to you. DDD
  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Welcome to the board Mermaid. :group-hug:

    Wow. You've been through a lot.

    Honestly though, I'd just enjoy the kids / grandkids that enjoy and respect me and no waste much time on kids / grandkids who neither respect me nor seem to enjoy being with me. Doesn't matter if they're step or bio.

    Your daughter has her own issues to resolve. The deaths of her father and brother is huge by itself. Then her bipolar as well. Probably some other things a long the way. Those are her issues though, and you can't force her to face them.

    In own family, step / bio, doesn't make much difference. Katie has been in my life since she was 3. I can't imagine life without her having been in it anymore than I can the bio kids, nor can I imagine not loving her. She is as much my child as the rest of them. Period.

    I'm glad you found us.

  4. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    *hugs* on your long hard road, hon. I hope the grands do figure it out, but unlike DDD and HD, I'm not a grandma just yet, so I'll bow to their wisdom.
  5. mermaid

    mermaid New Member

    Thank you for your responses. Sometimes it helps just to get it out and since we've moved, we don't have any friends locally. I do know the Serenity prayer from years ago. I hadn't thought about it for the current issue but my faith in God has helped me make it through so much of this. The lost of my son was the hardest thing I have ever had to deal with but I can honestly say, I feel better knowing he isn't slowly killing himself anymore and is with God so I can see him someday. I do love my stepchildren very much. I practically raised them because their birth mother chose not to be much of a part of their lives. Like I said, they treat me very well and they know that I love them very much. I'm so glad to have my step-grandbabies to spoil even if they do live in another state. Our son is actually based less than 2 hrs from us and comes home at least once every 6 weeks so we get to see him fairly frequently. I'm very proud of my kids and grandkids.......all of them. But the choices my daughter and grandchildren have made, I have no control over.
  6. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Hi sorry you have to be here to meet us.

    Gosh it sounds like you have had so much happen to you in your life that now you deserve some peace in your life! Honestly by 38 your daughter should have grown up enough to know better about how to treat her parents, especially her only surviving parent. Bipolar or not...I am bipolar and sometimes it just irritates me when that is used as the end all excuse for bad behavior. However, I did start getting treatment around that age and am so much happier now. So take hope. Dont accept the way you have been treated but maybe eventually she will learn the error of her ways.

    I say enjoy the people in your family who do appreciate and love you. I know the losses will continue to hurt but try to just put that on a back burner and put your efforts into the ones who are returning your love. Thats about all you can do at this time.