worried about 22 year old daughter

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Michele2805, Apr 1, 2017.

  1. Michele2805

    Michele2805 New Member

    I have a 22 year old daughter who, to everyone else, is the ideal daughter. Outside the house she is bubbly, chatty etc but at home she stays in her bed/room all the time and doesn't really interact with her dad or I. We don't ask her to do any chores etc, her bedroom is a tip and all her clothes are washed/ironed for her. She tends not to eat with us. She is overweight and neither her dad or I am. I used to be and both her and I joined a slimming club about 6 years ago and lost weight. I kept mine off but unfortunately she went away to college and was very unhappy and put hers back on. I feel she resents me now as I have kept my weight off. We used to go shopping together and get on really well. Now she barely speaks to me except if she wants somethin. My worry is first her health due to being overweight and secondly the fact that she seldom goes out other than to work. She is a teacher and loves her job and is getting on very well at it. Each so often I suggest us going out for lunch/ shopping etc but she always has an excuse. I'm very hurt by her actions. My own relationship with my mother is awful and always has been and I have tried so hard to ensure the same thing didn't happen with my own daughter. For 18 years I succeeded but now it has all gone wrong. My husband and I tried to broach her weight issues about 3 years ago and it caused consternation so I vowed never to go there again. Anyone else gone through this with their daughter?
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I have an almost 21 year old daughter who I am very close to and Im sure shed say the same thing, but she is 21. I see her maybe once every two weeks. She lives an hour and a half away with her awesome almost twenty five year old boyfriend, works and goes to school. Soon she will be at the police academy. She does her own clothes etc and has since before high school and is very well adjusted. But she is busy and so am I. We always get together for holidays etc. We text and talk during the week but not every day.

    Your daughter is a full time working adult, probably tired after work. Adult kids that age ( i have four) are not usually hanging out with Mom. I personally think you should let her do her own chores. Shes not a little kid. You wont make her like you more by doing adult things for an adult. Its up to you but I think personally its best to respect their adulthood.

    I feel strongly about this. Her weight is her own issue. Again, she isnt a little girl and with anorexia being caused by women believing they must be thin, I think weight should not be discussed with any adult child. She is smart enough for college and i am sure if she wants to lose weight she knows how. She has years to decide to do it. This is not your decision in my opinion. My kids could all lose some weight. That is up to them as adults. This topic never comes up here.

    Your daughter is not using drugs, is working and is friendly except at home. I think its normal for 22 year olds to no longer be our best friends. Normal and healthy. I am not sure what you are worried about. Many 22 year olds dont live with us anymore. Its not an insult. Its growing up.

    I cant think of anything Id be worried about if this were my daughter. If she wants to go out, she will. It will probably be with peers. This is nothing against you. And many adults that age dont want us probing into their heads or running their lives. Or nagging.

    I hope this helped...it is what I experienced with all my kids and also they all moved out by 22. On their own dimes. I am still very close to all of them. You probably are not going to be her BFF at her age, but that doesnt mean you arent close. Close is different as they get older, work full time, date, find a significant other, marry, have kids etc. I actually feel once a daughter has kids, it can bring mothers/daughters closer. It has in my life.

    Good luck and let her go. We give them roots to grow and wings to fly. And mentally healthy adult kids love to fly!!! :)
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2017
  3. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I do not have a daughter. I have a son. Everything was great until he grew up. When kids grow up they feel they have to become independent emotionally. In this society especially.

    I think your daughter may be trying to be emotionally independent of you. She is not doing this against you, or to hurt you, but to gain psychological independence for herself.

    It sounds like the living arrangement may be making this harder for her, and for you. You have her close to you physically but not emotionally. If she lived independently for a time she might not have to put up such firm boundaries. If she were to live in a different place, she could choose to be with you. Or not. That might give her more of a sense of personal autonomy.

    My son did leave for 4 years. At about the age your daughter is now. Now he would prefer living with me. Not only for convenience but for love and family.

    The other thing I could say is that I wonder if you want to ask her how she feels. If you do ask, you need to be prepared to hear what she has to say. This is difficult but it may in the long run be in your interest and in her interest, too, to open up dialog.
  4. Michele2805

    Michele2805 New Member

    Thanks folks. These have really helped. Maybe I'm being too sensitive and because of my awful relationship with my mother have tried too hard to have a perfect one with my daughter. I know this doesn't exist? I'll maybe pull back a bit, not ask her to go out, etc. As regards the weight - again I think I'm trying to protect her from the heartbreak I went through of being overweight all my life. I just feel being overweight stops you from doing so many things but as you say - that is her issue and I have to respect that. Thank you again. I feel better having read your replies
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    An adult child wanting no autonomy, wanting to hang with us rather than peers and wanting us to know their every thought is not normal or healthy. We raise them to stand on their own. If they do, it is a sigh of relief. Many adult kids here on this forum are drug addicts, high scjool dropouts or mentally ill. They want us to take care of them sometimes even in their 50s. Be glad your daughter does not feel helplessly dependent on you. Its a gift!

    Your daughter is the only one who can and needs to decide when/if she loses weight. You cant nag her into it. It will put distance between you if you do. My daughter gained weight in college. She is still hsppy and thriving and is pre-engaged to a wonderful young man. You cant stop your adult daugter from bumps and bruises. That is life for all of us. We dont want our adult kids to go through bad things we dod, but we cant stop it. It is now their lessons to learn; they learn to deal with life their way.

    You have a lovely daughter who is working at a full time job that will sistain her, knows not to use drugs or break the law, and wants independence. You have a daughter who is doing life right.

    As mothers we tend to over react and try to fix their problems. Often our grown kids dont want Mom drama so they prefer to tell calmer peers their problems. If we stay calm and non judgmental when they come to us, and listen rather than spout our ideas of solutuins, I feel they may come to us more. But they still often believe, rightly so, that peers better understand their problems due to their same ages, growing up in the same generation and ability to not get too emotional. And peers tend not to judge them.

    I found my girls will come to me when they need me. My boys too actually. Some problems are best given to peers. Our kids know which is which.

    Congratulations on a wonderful daughter. Enjoy her!
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2017
  6. wisernow

    wisernow wisernow

    I agree with all of the above. My daughter and I have always had a close relationship however in her early twenties as well I sensed a detachment. I think it was her way of finally breaking out of her cocoon and flying . She is away at school becoming a doctor. We speak maybe once a week and see each other every few months. When we do get together, she is not my little girl anymore...we are good good friends who enjoy each others company. Do I still love to spoil her? Of course....but I know that she has launched and I am now a bystander watching her fly! That makes me happy and sad all at the same time. Go figure!
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  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Im happy and sad too. I miss that little girl who was the center of our lives, the one who exceled at sports and was so fun and cuddly. And I miss my oldest daugjter who was so beautiful and sweet and cuddly and shy and needed me.

    But I would be even sadder if that was still them. They have adult lives to live and I am proud of them and excited about their futures. We are still very close emotionally. I can still play with and spoil my beauriful, smart oldest daughter's little girl, my granddaughter. I call them all "my girls."

    "A daughter is a little girl who grows up to be your best friend."

    I gave this quote on a wooded plaque to both of my daughters. It is so true. Well, it is for me. We have so much fun when we get together and then we go back to our lives to meet again as loving friends, bonded forever.

    Your daughter will cherish you if you let her be an adult. She is strong, smart and capable.
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2017
  8. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Michele. I think you have found a great deal of insight:
    I do not think you tried too hard. "Perfect" is not attainable in real life.

    I love my daughter. I did my best.