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Parental alienation

Community Member

I don’t know how I got here.

I bought 4 children up by myself. Their father had little to do with them. I battled on for decades. These children of mine are all grown up. One son abused me 10 years ago and I have had nothing to do with him. Another son sent me a text 3 years ago stating he knew all about me (from a conversation with a younger sister who I had told not to rely on me to support her anymore) and wanted nothing further to do with me. A younger daughter who I have just spent the last 5 years launching on to the world, is married and has 2 children, now , this year wants nothing further to do with me. And now spends a lot of time with her brothers. Another daughter, who just this week tells me to leave this married daughter alone.

So I sit here, ashamed, that my relationships with my children have deteriorated so badly.

I cant do anything about it. I find calling, texting or emailing, embarrassing. I know the dynamics of others around them had contributed to this estrangement.

Some family members and friends are aware of this alienation I have with my four children.

I think it’s beginning to affect my mental health. I wonder what was the point of me working so hard over the last 35 years in raising them.

One thing I have recognised was when they were little, and had returned from a weekend with their father they would take their anger out on me for several days. It is something I put up with for years. My children using me as a battering ramp to their disenchantment with the world.

And this continues in their adulthood. I’m now getting too old to cope. And my children could care less ....

1 Reply 1

Community Champion
Community Champion

Dear Mlitzah~

I'm sorry that things have - at least for the moment - turned out as they have. A heart-breaking situation.

I"m sure just about all of what I want to say you will already have considered, but perhaps coming from someone else might give it more weight in your thoughts.

Children are reared up by two parents, and it is their influence that helps make them turn out as they do. Having a disinterested or absent father has a huge effect, on everything from practical things though to self-esteem. As you said on the occasions they did see him their reaction was unhappy.

A trait not just confined to children is to vent anger on the nearest and safest target, which it sadly would appear is you. This can become almost a way of life - a coping mechanism if you like - and can be further reinforced if it is a 'group' activity.

What to do about it I'm not sure. One thing to aim for I guess is to be a reservoir of calm, sense and love there to be drawn upon in times of adversity. Maybe not trying too hard but simply observing the normal life events might be the way to go for a while.

Something to bear in mind is people do change over time and with increased maturity often comes increased valuing of relationships and family. I've found that in myself. Perhaps it will hold true of your children too. Plus of course the attraction of grandchildren can be a big influence.

May I ask if you are alone or have family or friends to give you support? it does make a big difference.