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Distancing daughter

Started by Tabathadog, October 17, 2020, 07:31:12 pm

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Tabathadog

I can't believe that I am even looking for and even writing on a site such as this.  I have finally reached my limit, and it is so heart and soul crushing that some days I can barely stand it, but it is what it is.  My daughter and I had a really good relationship pretty much through her high school years and I assumed that it would only get better as she grew.  I had a really good relationship with my mom and talked to her weekly, sometimes daily and often went to her house for visits always taking the my children, so they were exposed to that type of relationship between a parent and a child.  Once my daughter met her husband she changed and I suspect he had something to do with that.  He comes from a family that had a higher income then us and supposedly are more sophisticated than my husband and me.  I can't believe that my daughter lets this sway her thinking she was not raised this way, but she does.  It didn't happen overnight but has increased to a point where she ridicules things I say and puts me down.  All this occurring while I have been the one who has babysat her children saving her that expense as she does not pay me.  I don't get it, there is no reason for her to act this way to me but she does, and the things she does are so stupid and petty.  One example a couple years ago I told her I was thinking about growing out my hair and she told me that I "did not have the type of hair that can be grown out" Now mind you I have had long hair way past my shoulders more than once during her younger years so not sure where this is coming from but evidently I now have witchy hair that can't be grown out according to her.  Now she has long hair but I can't have that.  I know this sounds like a petty insignificant thing but this is just one of many put downs, some small so more greater.  She once even told me I didn't know how to post on facebook and proceeded to tell what I should do.  I asked other people to read my post and let me know if I had done something wrong and everyone said No it was perfectly fine.  She does stuff like this all the time.  Then she will all the sudden stare at my face like she is looking at a flaw and I will say what is wrong, what are you looking at, do I have food on my face or something and she says nothing.  I will go to a mirror and check and there is nothing there. My husband and I have helped her out financially and never asked for repayment, we have taken her and her family on all expense paid vacations.  I have tried for years to get her to love me like she use to and it just isn't happening. I was recently hospitalized and she didn't come to see me until my husband called her, but I was there for her when she was in the hospital.  What can I do, well today I realized nothing.  It is her, not me, I can do nothing about her behavior, but I can control how I respond to her treatment of me.  But that is the hard part, because it is so hard to realize that I will never get back what we had and I had no say in why it changed.  However I have to accept what it is now, and learn to deflect her negative comments and realize that those comments are not true, they do not define me.  I need to do this to get back my confidence in myself and help myself heal so that I can become once again the person I was.  But it is very hard, and very sad to grieve and mourn over all the lost opportunities that we are missing out on, because I don't cut the mustard anymore, according to her.

Stilllearning

Welcome T!  We are glad you found us.  We ask all new members to go to our HomePage and under Open Me First to read the posts placed there for you. Please pay special attention to the Forum Agreement to be sure WWU is a fit for you. We are a monitored Website.

If you replace 'daughter' with 'son' I could have written most of your post.  I know how you feel.  The aching loss and the sense of betrayal.  I knew I deserved better.  I did.  I do.  But getting to a happy place was a long chore with many pitfalls.  It started slowly, by first realizing that I deserved to be happy and my DS was not making me happy so I had to do that myself.  Something in us (especially mothers) rebels against turning away from our children.  It makes us feel like failures.  It took me a while to realize that nothing was farther from the truth.  The truth was that my DS was grown.  I had done my work and helped him learn as many lessons as I could.  Now I had to turn the teaching over to life and watch him master it.

It has been a long road filled with many setbacks where I fell back into what I now call "the abyss".  The journey into the abyss starts innocently enough.  I start thinking about my DS, how things 'used to be', how I can maybe get back there if I just try a little harder, how I must have done something wrong, how I should be able to 'fix' it.  The honest truth is the problem is not mine to fix.  I have no control over the situation.  He has his own lessons to learn and I have to just stand by and watch.  So now, when I start into the abyss I use my three mantras to help me get back to my life.  Sorry if I am repeating but here they are:

1) No news is good news
2) Not my circus, not my monkeys
3) What I focus on expands

If I can manage to tear my mind back to something that I enjoy (camping, canoeing, cooking etc.) then I can regain my footing and enjoy the rest of my day.  I worked hard to get to where I am and I deserve to be happy.  So do you.

Hugs!!
Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
Author unknown

VictorianTexas

Still learning: What grabbed my attention in your post was the statement,"Not my problem to fix". I'll likely ponder that one for some time. I'm currently staying with my daughter and son-in-law after a hip replacement that hasn't gone well. We were anticipating I'd stay no more than two weeks but it's been three now. A pattern of avoidance with hot and cold behavior has developed. Even with carefully chosen words I know my daughter will have a meltdown if I ask to be taken home. Talking it out has never been productive. We do well together when our time is limited. Recognizing that I'm not responsible for her behavior and  knowing it's not my problem to fix is setting boundaries. I don't need permission or live in purgatory over the consequences.

Stilllearning

Hi V!  Glad to meet you and very happy some of what I said resonated with you!  Hopefully you have read the posts under "Open Me First" and understand the rules of the website.  Sure looks like you do! 

I have one more thing to add to your particular situation.  My father got cancer years ago and came to live with me and my DH during his chemo in case he needed help.  He was a wonderfully stoic man who hardly ever complained even when he was the sickest.  Having the stress of dealing with a cancer patient was not nearly as bad for my marriage as the stress it put on my DH when he had to live with his FIL's daughter.  I know it sounds silly but when we are adults we still act differently around our parents than we do around our spouses and to be honest my DH missed his wife.  He got irritable with me and I was overburdened with trying to take care of my Dad so I didn't understand why he was irritable when he should be supportive so I got irritable and it turned into a horrible mess.  I know some spouses tolerate their in laws better than my DH did, but that could be because their significant others handle being around their parents better than I did.  My brother had the same problem when his MIL moved in.  He finally told his wife that he missed his wife and was tired of living with his MIL's daughter.  My dad was so anxious to move out of our house that he slept on the floor the first night just to get away from us.  Not my finest hour and I wish I could have done things differently but he forgave me and so did my DH.  Anyway if you tell your DD that you are worried about how your relationship with her may be interfering with her marriage she might be more willing to take you home (if you think you are ready).

Hugs!!
Your mind is a garden your thoughts are the seeds
You can grow flowers or you can grow weeds.
Author unknown