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CHILDREN- do you love unconditionally?
I'll try to be specific in this long torturous journey with my youngest daughter.
My eldest daughter (now 25) left her mothers home at 12yo and never went back. she had been subjected to emotional abuse like I had been when I was married for 11 years. My eldest has zero contact with her mother for that reason. My youngest daughter is more like her mother in nature, has adopted her behaviour and both my eldest daughter and myself have had difficulty keeping a relationship with her together. Subsequently my eldest wont have anything to do with her younger sister.
I first tasted problems with my youngest when she was 14yo. Since she was 4yo she spent every second w/end with me and more time over school holidays. Then out of the blue "I dont want to see you anymore". Just like her mother she gave no reason and went silent. I endured years of on and off silence from her mother during our marriage. I was afraid she had picked up her mothers traits.
The on and off again relationship started from there. As a dad I'd supported her financial over and beyond her mothers child support including a one off extra payment to cover her dental/jaw operations , a total of $14000. So there should be no concern there. It ends up a guessing game.
I always prided myself to loving my children unconditionally. Up until last week it wouldnt matter what my children did to me, I would always be there for them- always. But last week at the end of a 6 weeks period of my youngest having e as a friend on Facebook then dropping e off without warning....I came to the conclusion after 8 years of this yo-yo relationship, always at her whim, that it was over. I've withdrawn my fatherhood from her. She doesnt know it yet. When she again want to come bck into my life I will ask her to explain what she wants...if it doesnt not include an apology, a recognition of her hurt to me, then there is no reason for me to chat further. eg the door is a tiny bit ajar but in reality I know her spot on her leopard skin wont change.
This stance is unusual for me. How much is enough? Losing the love of a child can be heart wrenching. Many times over and it can drain you, hurt you indescribably and other loving friends and family watch you decline until you get yourself together again.
There is a time, a moment that comes around when you say- no more. For many of us it is a form of survival, emotional survival, so you can more on to focus more on those that really love you- unconditionally, the way you love them..
I concur, love is unconditional. Full stop.
There are no limits to love. Either you do it or you don't. There is no halfway. There is no, I will love you on the proviso you do this, that or the other; or don't do something.
Now, just because you love her, doesn't mean you have to like her. Yes, you can love someone AND dislike them at the same time. Or more accurately dislike their actions, behaviours and/or beliefs.
Maybe your conversation goes along the lines of, "first off, I love you, but I'm most disappointed in your actions lately....."
Personally, I could never wholly, 100%, cut them off.
dear WK, I know that this is something which you really haunts you, probably that's not quite the correct word, maybe upsets you and/or disappoints you.
It's a situation which you can never figure out the reasoning on why she has done it, so it perplexes you to the point of being frustrated.
When my marriage failed and my wife started proceedings for a divorce, our youngest son suffered so much as he became depressed and anorexic and wouldn't talk to anyone, and also became quite angry and he stayed this way until the house was sold off and didn't make contact with me, but I had to talk to him, so it took me a long time to make contact when ringing him but the conversations were never easy and brief.
I had to visit him because I never wanted to be cut off from either son, but I suppose that all of this depends on how we handle their verbal abuse, some parents don't like it nor can they accept it, but each to their own, so I know where WK is coming from, but I also agree with D'jected that I couldn't cut them off.
I have to take the time to acknowledge what WK is saying as you have had terrible experience from what you have posted on other posts and how you were treated, and just because I have replied in a different manner doesn't mean that I do have plenty of sympathy for you and can understand how you are feeling. Geoff.
Thankyou to both of you. It helps to get different slants on the issue, different ways to word the sorrow.
I've decided for the first time to set boundaries on my daughter. She wont know it until she decides to make another contact and I know she will.
I will listen to her, ask her why she is making contact etc. I will tell her I love her- because I do. But I'll also not take the relationship further unless she is willing to discuss our differences, or more accurately, she discusses with me what her issues are with me because I have been the one that has moved on from the past not her.
I truly dont believe she will change all that much from how she is now. I say that because she is almost a copy of her mother and both have revenge and silence as their weapons. Two traits I cannot live with.
Because I've set these boundaries I'm feeling much better, I've resolved my thoughts and already have put it behind me. All is ok. Yes D'jected, I love her but dont like her. And with a perosn that is destructive intentionally, I have to protect my emotions from being used as a ping pong ball all my life. So I will no longer be proactive in trying to make something work that doesnt include effort on her side. One way relationships are not relationships..