Author Topic: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!  (Read 1876 times)

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justdontunderstand

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3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« on: September 21, 2010, 12:52:21 AM »
I read your posts. I don't generally post myself but just try to absorb your wisdom and find my story in your similar problems with DILs. I decided that since I am once again up at 3 in the morning because I can't turn off the "problem" in my head, I should try and vent to relieve this tension.

Our son was married last fall to a young woman we barely know. He is 30-- no teenager lacking maturity. He has been quite independent from us since leaving for college at age 18. He is an accomplished professional who seemed to have good judgement in prior relationships. We had a good relationship with him before he met his wife.  Since day one, she has given off clear signals that our family is not important. She has done this by not answering our emails or phone calls or given us the common courtesies of thank yous for birthday, Christmas or "no occasion" gifts we have sent. On the few visits we have had from them as a couple (less than fifteen days in five years), she spoke only when spoken to, fell asleep while conversation swirled around her or spent time alone in another room. No amount of welcoming on our part has broken through the barriers. She has let it be known to our son that she finds us "unwelcoming". HUH? Our son now visits without her. We don't ask for an explanation and none is offered. It is like living in the Twilight Zone.

 My head wants to give up. My heart hangs on. Our son tells us, "I can't mediate this". I see a therapist now to deal with the sadness. My kind hearted husband has developed an ulcer. A question we do not ask but wonder about our son is---- "Who did you become to be attracted to someone who marginalizes your family without just cause?"   

How do you keep hope alive at 3 in the morning?

Thanks for listening.

Offline Nana

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2010, 01:19:20 AM »
Justdontunderstand"

He/She that keeps you up at 3:00 do not deserve you.  She has given signals that she does not want you in your life.....huhh.... than you dont need her either.  Dont be sad, you are not alone.  Many women in this forum have the same problem.....what is happening with all these girls....I dont understand it either.   

At least you have your son that visits you by himself.  That is good.  You see that he loves you and cares.  It is true, that sometimes son/daughter  cannot do anything about this.  Dont lose hope....just move on and enjoy your son as much as you can. 

You are good people and something great will come your way.   Be strong and be very close to your husband.  In the ideal world.....all the family should be close.....but in the real world things are different and as much as we try, we cant change them.  We can only change ourselves and live what has been given to us. 

I wish I could say something better to help you but I can only say that we are here for you and we care and are here for you .   Please vent and will feel much better.    Give time to time.

God Bless you.

Good Night
Love is not love Which alters when it alteration finds, Or bends with the remover to remove:
Shakespeare

cremebrulee

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2010, 05:14:37 AM »
Dear justdon'tunderstand....

your story is heartbreaking and despairing....and there are many women here who know your pain and are living it...I'm so sorry this is happening to you....

just don't know, what is wrong with our sons?  I shake my head in great frustration with them....yanno, he could say to his wife, "OK, listen up here.....I know you don't care for my parents, however, they are my parents, none-the-less...and I need to have quality time with them...so if you go with me, to visit them, then you treat them with respect, period"...and if not, please know, that I'm going without you, but would prefer you come."

I just don't understand, the way they think....and blame them more then anyone else....they have control, and they could help to resolve this....if they'd flat out tell both MIL and DIL, this is silly and ridiculous....you are both going to stop it now and when your together, we're going to get along...period.

please know that your in my thoughts and prayers...and in the meantime, come in anytime and vent.....

Hugs and love
Creme


barelythere

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2010, 05:30:22 AM »
Creme, when you say that our sons should say to us both, "you're both going to stop this now".  I swear before God, I have not done anything to her, to him.  I would apologize till my teeth came out if I had.  This thing is so heartbreaking that all the pep talks in the world at times don't help.   

cremebrulee

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2010, 06:00:08 AM »
Creme, when you say that our sons should say to us both, "you're both going to stop this now".  I swear before God, I have not done anything to her, to him.  I would apologize till my teeth came out if I had.  This thing is so heartbreaking that all the pep talks in the world at times don't help.   

If your son looked at just his wife and said that, how do you think she would feel?  It surely wouldn't make matters any better?  But to say it to both, might have a much more positive outcome....I am not saying you or anyone else did anything....

Barelythere, sometimes we do and say things that we don't even realize hurts another's feelings....on the work front, a family member, depending on how sensitive someone is...and I know we'd all apologize till the cows came home....however, it won't mean a thing if the other party isn't willing and our son's don't get involved to the point that he speaks with athority...there are two major players in this, dil's and mothers, and if my son would have done that years ago, I would have not only been very proud of him, but it would have made it easier to continue trying....please don't take what I write personally, again, I'm simply thinking out loud.

« Last Edit: September 21, 2010, 06:03:44 AM by cremebrulee »

justdontunderstand

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2010, 06:57:23 AM »
Nana, cremebrulee, barelythere
Thank you all for sharing your support. It is much needed and appreciated. I know I am a victim of expectation. I expected that if you loved, you could break through any barrier. I expected that because our family had always been close that it would always be so. I expected that my children would choose life partners that would easily accept our open arms. I expected that grown ups could resolve any conflict (real or imagined) with the willingness to view ones own mistakes or missteps for the sake of getting along. I expected that almost everyone understands the value of family. I expected that the person who married my son would at least see that he is loveable, at least in part, because of the way he was loved and influenced by his parents.

What I am learning is that expectations are my undoing. I am trying very hard to learn to take things as they come, expect nothing and be grateful for what I have and not lament  what I am missing. It is a long journey. There are days in which I feel almost whole again. There are days when I cry when I see my son's picture on the shelf.
I hope to come out on the  otherside of this with my dignity in tact and without fear of continuing to love even in the face of rejection.

barelythere

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2010, 07:07:26 AM »
Nana, cremebrulee, barelythere
Thank you all for sharing your support. It is much needed and appreciated. I know I am a victim of expectation. I expected that if you loved, you could break through any barrier. I expected that because our family had always been close that it would always be so. I expected that my children would choose life partners that would easily accept our open arms. I expected that grown ups could resolve any conflict (real or imagined) with the willingness to view ones own mistakes or missteps for the sake of getting along. I expected that almost everyone understands the value of family. I expected that the person who married my son would at least see that he is loveable, at least in part, because of the way he was loved and influenced by his parents.

What I am learning is that expectations are my undoing. I am trying very hard to learn to take things as they come, expect nothing and be grateful for what I have and not lament  what I am missing. It is a long journey. There are days in which I feel almost whole again. There are days when I cry when I see my son's picture on the shelf.
I hope to come out on the  otherside of this with my dignity in tact and without fear of continuing to love even in the face of rejection.

Perfectly said. I can no longer look at our son's picture. It breaks my heart.  I gave everything, both my husband and myself, everything. I had so hoped to have a Daughter or at least a DIL who would appreciate our love. I guess that's our fault, too many expectations. Seems like it wasn't asking for very much to me. We would have adored her and given her all our love.

Offline Miss Understood

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2010, 07:21:23 AM »
JDU....Welcome!
I think all of us have the same 3 a.m. alarm clock periodically...some more than others. Right now you are atleast in a good place that your DS is actually speaking with you and having a relationship with you. Nurture that and hang on to that. It could be much worse and he could be like most of our DS's who choses not to have a relationship because his wife says so. It's awful when you realize that your DIL doesn't like you or have space in her life for you. That's her and that's who your DS chose.

Blessings and Best wishes to you and glad you're here.

Offline luise.volta

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2010, 08:02:55 AM »
I, too, have been there at 3:00 AM. Acceptance was where healing was for me. My son was still my son but he was (he has since died) also his own person. His adulthood was about him, not me, and his lessons and his path were his mystery, not mine. I gave him DNA as did his dad but we didn't provide a blueprint, a script or even permanent values. That was all up to him. He was on his own. Free to choose...make errors...fall, get up and dust himself off and fall again in adulthood just as he had as a toddler. Only this time...I wasn't to be part of it. Once I got that...I found peace. Sending love... 
"Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes it's a quiet voice at the end of the day saying, I'll try again tomorrow." -- Mary Ann Radmacher

Offline Miss Understood

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2010, 09:25:58 AM »
Luise...it sounds so sad the way you put it out there for the newbies...including me...who is still new, but reaching understanding. It is very logical and it is true. It is what has brought me some peace regarding my DS. I know that no matter how much I want him to still be my baby...he will never be that baby again.
JDU...Hold on to what you do have with your DS by accepting what you do have. You are very fortunate that you do have some relationship with him. Cherish those times and remember to not bring up DIL and make it about your time with your DS when he is there. I would give anything to spend some time with my DS and would dance around the living room, down the hall and jump on the bed if he was there in my house with me, without the DIL  ;D

justdontunderstand

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2010, 09:34:47 AM »
Miss Understood and Luise

Thank you both as well for your thoughts and support.

Miss Understood---you are so right not to criticize or even bring up DIL when we speak or visit with our son. Instinctively, we have done that. What hurts is not knowing a whole part of his life----his life with her. Is he happy in his marriage? What are their plans? Is he suffering like we are with the estrangement? We do try and have a good time with him but it seems inauthentic at times.....we are dancing around a problem that needs attention but no one has a clue how to approach or even if DIL wants to approach the estrangement. Like I said....Twilight Zone!

Luise, I hear you too--my head definitely hears you but my heart wants to fix this crazy situation...... not accept my powerlessness to change it. I think acceptance may be the key......the letting go of the expectations........ but I just can't find the way to it just yet. I am exhausted with the trying, the thinking about it, the living with it.  Those are the thoughts that spin and spin in the wee hours of the morning.

How can we fix this? Are we overlooking something? What is our part in this fiasco of a relationship (or lack of one?) On and on the questions.....the searching goes......until I am up at 3 in the morning reaching out to strangers to keep me from falling to the ground in a pity puddle of why me? why us? I thank you all for being there and sharing your stories. It so helps to know others understand.

Offline luise.volta

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #11 on: September 21, 2010, 10:46:50 AM »
We are all newbies...because we are all learning and our learning never stops. I am talking about a long, slow process and where it can take us. I think that refusing to surrender. which is where we all start, has to be lived through and transcended for us to find even intermittent peace. I never mean to sound unkind or impatient...just realistic and with that...hopeful. Sending love...
"Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes it's a quiet voice at the end of the day saying, I'll try again tomorrow." -- Mary Ann Radmacher

Offline Nana

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #12 on: September 21, 2010, 11:00:55 AM »
Yes Luise  I agree.  Life is an everlasting lesson.  Learning is dynamic....it never stops.....the more we learn the wiser we get (usually).   Sometimes the learning process is painful but it is how we get stronger.   We try so hard to take advantage of what we have learned.....that we want to save our babies (children lol) from falling ljust as we did....but they have to do their own learning .  I wish them at least a B grade.  Hope...hope....
Love is not love Which alters when it alteration finds, Or bends with the remover to remove:
Shakespeare

cremebrulee

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #13 on: September 21, 2010, 11:08:35 AM »
Quote
justdontunderstand
How can we fix this? Are we overlooking something? What is our part in this fiasco of a relationship (or lack of one?) On and on the questions.....the searching goes......until I am up at 3 in the morning reaching out to strangers to keep me from falling to the ground in a pity puddle of why me? why us? I thank you all for being there and sharing your stories. It so helps to know others understand.

There is a part we have in this, whether we think it is legitimate or not...some DIL's will look so hard for things, they find anything, and other's are just simply young, inexperienced, insecure, afraid and immature, others are simply so self imposed, and other's like my DIL, didn't mean anything against me personally.

I thought my DIL was narcissistic, the absolute rudest and self absorbed person I had ever known....however, when I started finally asking myself the same questions as you have here, answers started coming....even though I didn't intend on hurting my dil's feelings, I did without realizing it....by my actions, things I said, did, and those things, coupled with the things I saw her do, well, they escalated into this huge war...and nothing would have ever resolved it as long as I continued to blame her totally.  I kept saying to myself, "but I didn't do anything wrong, I would never do anything to hurt her"....however, I did, and didn't realize it until she told me what it was that upset here and honestly, I went outloud with embarrassment, "how dare I?"  My DIL was none of the above, matter of fact, not even close, she was afraid, she was placed into a huge family situation which really overwhelmed her....it wasn't just my family, but my son's family..well, now she is right at home, but it took time....a long time, for her to feel comfortable.  You can't just expect these girls to marry our son's and immediately think of us as mothers, and we can't expect our sons to marry and have everything be the same. 

Our son's grow up and are looking forward to having they're own family....they don't want mom clinging to them any more....they love they're wives....they are working full time, have they're own home, and are very busy, especially if they have kids....so, we see it as DIL keeping them from us, but that isn't always the case, granted, in some it is...and those sons are the ones who should be slapped upside the head for allowing it....

Your starting to ask yourself the same questions I asked myself, but it took ridding the anger, hurt and frustration, when I finally started even contemplating, that there must have been something I had done, to cause her to hate me....?  And there was, and some of the stuff, I don't even remember, it was innocent, however, due to her culture and mine, she took it as if I were trying to hurt her on purpose, just as I took her actions as hostile....

I don't know what your situation is, or have any magical answer to make it all go away...it is an extreme amount of work and self examination...you can never find answers by blaming....(and I'm not talking to everyone here, I'm simply thinking of my own experience) but I realized, the anwers had to come from within...and I was so weary of being angry...being blocked out, and finally, finally I started listening to my son, without taking anything he said personal....but honestly opened my mind up to her feelings, andwhy she felt the way she did....I asked him, if he thought there was anything I could do to change this whole mess....and I apologized that things turned out the way they did....they knew I was serious, b/c I am not a person who apologizes over and over again....when you do that, people don't believe you, and it makes it rougher, b/c you might say your sorry, (not you, I'm writing you in general) everytime you think you've upset them...however, they know it's not a real apology, b/c your going out and doing it again and again....and some people think out loud, and say everything that is on they're mind, and in that alone, a person may take as an insult...my boss is a direct example of that....he says things that are totally inappropriate, but when you get to know him, you realize he isn't trying to be hurtful....now imagine talking like that to a 20 - 30 year old?  One who has had childhood problems....she would think your hurting her on purpose....

There are so many different senerios that could occur, none of which you are even aware of....however, when you start to realize, hey, maybe I did say something that hurt her, and it only has to be one time, to start a war....be it MIL's or DIL's.  Then, it's off to years of adding to that, and everything that person now does or says, well, they must be doing it to hurt me....and it was never intended that way....depends on how insecure the person is....

I may not have answered any of your questions or helped you at all...if not, nothing lost....however, I do hope there is something in my babbling you can take from and it helps....

please keep writing and venting...the important thing is, your not holding onto the anger any longer...or at least when you wrote this you were having a very good day...compared to some really poopy ones....

keep writing and we'll keep listening and offering you all we know, our experiences, and each one is different. 

Hugs
Creme

« Last Edit: September 21, 2010, 11:10:22 AM by cremebrulee »

Offline Miss Understood

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Re: 3:00am--Can't Sleep Again!
« Reply #14 on: September 21, 2010, 11:10:22 AM »
Luise...you can never sound unkind or impatient :o  Just kidding. You are very strong and I struggle very much with letting go to your understanding...why, because I don't WANT that to be true. You are the first one who taught me how to stop WANTING things my way. O.k...I'm guilty, but as humans, that is our nature. JDU is feeling the same thing as everyone here has felt. I still struggle with the thoughts of what if, if I only, can this be, what is he feeling, can I change that, this, him, her to bring back what is "normal" to me. The answer is NO. I have finally grasped that...I fight it from time to time, but JDU...I can tell you...you will start to feel better, not wonderful, but will have more peace and calmness in your soul when you do surrender like Luise says. I am not saying you will not have your waves, your crying moments or even feelings of hopelessness from time to time...they just get less and less and then you start living again. It has been 3 months for me and I am about 60% back to feeling somewhat normal...that doesn't sound much, but it really is for those who know me. I was at 0% when I started this forum. SO, I am at the one hour at a time instead of one second at a time stage. That I am looking forward to reaching the one day at a time stage.
Remember...you have a lot of positives and your situation is not hopeless. Do yourself a big favor...don't make it hopeless. Keep reading here, journal and vent here if you need to. Give your DS good reasons to keep coming back to see you even if the visits are short and without her. The alternative is so much worse and you are now a much wiser woman.

Luise...One thing that stuck in my head from the early stages when I first started to go through this was you telling me that in order for me to grow I needed to focus on growing and not choosing to stay stuck in my position. Even when I vent now...I am so far from stuck. I used the scenario to describe what I was going through as I was in a deep hole and dirt was caving in on me and I couldn't get out, then I changed my strong hold on the situation and started to accept that I can't change a thing...the dirt stopped pouring in and then I started gaining new ground on my life by getting out and doing things for me and changing the fact that I lived soley for my kids and GC and then someone gave me a latter and then I climbed out of that hole. I now sit and look at the hole and sometimes dangle my feet in it and then I imagine what it was like in that hole and then I pull my feet out. Someday I will walk away from that hole. It is still familiar to me and I am not quite ready to let totally go...which is honest, but I am looking the other direction more and more and the other view is looking so much nicer.
That being said JDU, foucs on yourself right now, 1 second at a time, then one minute at a time, 1 hour at a time and then 1 day at a time. YOU WILL get there...if you let go.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2010, 11:18:30 AM by Miss Understood »