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Messages - Bamboo2

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1
Hi Amflautist,
So sorry to hear about your situation.  For me, there was a grieving process that couldn't really be short-circuited.  But then I got angry, mostly at myself, for losing my self-repect in the process of trying to keep a relationship going no matter how I was treated by my DD.  Besides letting her go to live her own life and disengaging from knowing what was going on there, I nurtured a couple of relationships with young adult women who really valued me in their lives.  That was transforming, and really helped me understand that none of my DD's behavior toward me was really about me and it certainly should not have defined me.  I also had WWU, both posting and reading old threads, to help me, especially in weak moments when I was in the abyss, or in doubt about what I was doing or not doing with respect to my DD.  Tremendously supportive!  I wish you well in this transition.  I could feel your strength in your writing, and with time and change of focus, I believe you will weather this as have so many women here :)  It WILL get better!

2
Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Not invited to the wedding
« on: February 11, 2018, 12:50:06 PM »
Welcome, Dazed!  Sorry for the experience you're going through.  It hurts not to be a part of important events in our dear adult children's lives.  That was the case with my young adult daughter.  It took a couple of years for me to get used to her choices to be other places for holidays or other special events and not take it out on her or drown in my sorrow.  I had to be conscious about being grateful for whoever was with me at those special times and let go of the rest.  It made a big difference. 

As far as helping them financially, I've realized with my daughter that my "help" hasn't necessarily been helpful in the way I'd hoped.  I loaned her money for a car, and now resent that I have to ask her for payments each month because she "forgets". I decided that next time she asks for a loan, if there is one, she can just take out a loan from the bank like everyone else who doesn't have the cash.  By loaning her the money myself, I deprive her of that important adult financial experience.  What I've found is that it's best for me to just get out of the way of her learning.  Live and learn.  We are all learning, right? 

I love your quote about finding meaning in disappointment.  I like to look at those twisted trees at the top of a rocky bluff, and wonder what stories they could tell if they could talk.  We all have rich stories as we are twisted by life.  My image of a bamboo, my namesake on WWU, is of a plant that is flexible but not breakable in the face of adversity, and deeply rooted to withstand the trials and tribulations of life.

Hugs!

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Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Difficult Adult Daughter
« on: January 12, 2018, 10:43:45 AM »
Welcome, gezeebezee!  As a new member of WWU, we ask that you look over the posts in the "Open Me First" section and pay close attention to the forum agreement to be sure that we are a good fit for you.  We are a monitored website.

Let me first say that you have been through a lot!  I'm sorry for situation you are in now with your daughter.  I don't have a situation like yours, but others on this forum have had issues with AC who have addiction or mental health issues.  You can find some of these threads in the archives under Adult Sons and Daughters.  My heart goes out to you.

This may not be it, but I wonder if your daughter is looking to point blame for all that has transpired and left her with a disability.  She is the one at the cause of these problems, but maybe she is blaming you so she doesn't have to take responsibility herself.  That is not healthy for either you or her. I wonder whether your daughter is continuing to use chemicals - sounds like she wants to, at least.  That is concerning.  Maybe she is dealing with depression or other mental health issues - also concerning.  In my way of thinking, those are her issues, though, not yours.  You have been kind to offer her a place to recover, yet she is not even acting like a considerate guest or roommate.  In fact, she is causing you pain.  I'd consider this current living situation unhealthy.  In your shoes, I'd give her a time frame to find another housing option. You've done your best. You deserve happiness and a peaceful life.  I wouldn't want her to think that spitting on you, literally or figuratively, is okay.

As for the counseling, perhaps you could see another counselor who can offer you what you are looking for.  In my experience, having seen several counselors for different reasons, I've found it is best to be up front about what I'm looking to achieve in counseling.  Some are better than others for different issues and they all have their specialties.

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Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Cheap, adult son...
« on: January 11, 2018, 03:13:53 PM »
Welcome, Petra.  Gifts and AC can be a challenge, as I've found with my 20 something ACs.  DD would impulsively give me things I would never use/wear/enjoy.  It felt like something she just did to check off a list, but it would leave me feeling very disappointed.  DS loves me, but if I didn't explicitly let him know what I would like (small gift card, inexpensive tech gadget, a nice and well-chosen card), he might not give/do anything for me.  He is pretty self-focused and low on the empathy scale.  The thing I did was ask myself what I'd like and then ask for it.  Sometimes it was just time together playing a game. 

I don't know if it would work for you in your situation, but maybe you could explicitly ask your son for what you'd like.

The challenge I have faced is to not have expectations of them - that is what has led to my anger or disappointment.  I can hope for time together or a special gesture or token of affection, but I set myself up for disappointment when I expect that.  I have learned to focus on ways to get joy wherever I can find it - even buying my own gifts at times  :)  Or focusing on people and activities that do bring me joy.

As for the counseling idea that Luise mentioned, I am now seeing a counselor about my son and it has been helpful in many ways, even in recognizing small steps of consideration or thoughtfulness toward me and DH that I might have missed in the past when I dwelled on disappointing behaviors. 

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Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Alone at Christmas
« on: January 07, 2018, 01:40:56 PM »
Hi Sue,
Welcome to WWU.  So sorry about your situation, but glad you found us.  I second the wise posts by Luise and StillLearning.  It might be time to face a new direction.  You've survived a lot, and you have a lot to offer other people.  It just might be a matter of finding those other people and situations.  Wishing you all the best.  ((Hugs))

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Daughter in Laws and/or Son in Laws / Re: DIL Behaviour Puzzle
« on: January 07, 2018, 01:32:57 PM »
Hi Freya, and welcome!  It sounds like you have your plan in place - good for you!  You may find by stepping back that you will enjoy the peace and lack of drama.  I found that when my DD decided to pull a weeks-long silent treatment on me, that I needed to call her on it.  She denied it and hung up on me, and I actually did enjoy the peace and quiet.  I didn't even wait around for her to get in touch again.  It was freeing.  You have given this relationship your best shot, and now is a great time to focus on yourself.  All the best  :)

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Hi Rosie,
Welcome to WWU!  I'm glad you found us, too.  As with all new members, we ask that you go to our "Open Me First" page and read the permanent posts there that explain our site better.  Please pay particular attention to our Forum Agreement to be sure that we are a proper fit for your needs.  We are a monitored website.

I don't have much to add to the great words by raindrops and jdtm.  The comforting thing about this website is that there are members who have walked a similar path to ours and have unique perspectives gained from that experience.  I'm sorry for what you are going through.  I've found that things do get better for me when I take care of myself and let go of what I can't control.  Simple but not easy, as Luise likes to say. Hugs!

8
Grab Bag / Re: 2017 Gratitude List
« on: December 31, 2017, 10:46:33 PM »
Hooray for you with your new cardiologist and meds, Luise!  So happy for you and all those whose lives you've touched and continue to touch, including mine!

Hubby and I shared the highlights of 2017, and at the top of our list is that our daughter is free of her old BF and all the trouble he was causing after four long years.  Her life and our relationship with her seem so much better. 

Warm wishes to all of you in the new year  :D

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Grab Bag / Re: Happy Holidays!
« on: December 23, 2017, 08:28:33 PM »
Hello Luise and WWU members,
It's good to hear your DIL is so considerate and that you will be surrounded by cherished people, Luise.  My husband, son and I are celebrating with my husband's small family about five hours from home.  My daughter and her new BF both have to work so we will have a separate gathering with them after we get back home.  Feeling very thankful!  Enjoy your holidays, everyone!

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Hi Justtired,
Welcome to WWU!  As with all new members, we ask that you go to our "Open Me First" page and read the permanent posts there that explain our site better.  Please pay particular attention to our Forum Agreement to be sure that we are a proper fit for your needs.  We are a monitored website.

Let me tell you that as I read your post, I could feel my abdominals tightening up, recalling my own daughter's adolescence and how tense it was in our household before she abruptly launched.  I can really relate to what you're going through.  It's a minefield.

When our situation at home became untenable with this DD at 18 (similar attitude as your daughter's plus a deadbeat boyfriend), she chose to move out with her BF and his mom, and we did not pay for her (well, we paid a few grocery bills and let her use our oldest car to get to HS in her senior year).  It actually did take the daily emotional pressure off us and gave us a breather to have her live away from home.  It was still a grieving process when she left, but /and she learned a lot.  She actually was proud of herself when she told me that she was regularly cleaning her BF's mom's house (which she never did unprompted at our home ). 

Now that your daughter is 19, your obligation of daily responsibility for her is over, and she should be acting like an adult.  Paying rent, doing chores, treating others respectfully, paying her own way financially, like any adult does.  If she were someone's roommate, they might have booted her out by now.  You have other children at home, and they are your primary concern at this time, just as your daughter was at that stage.  My take is that if this DD is not a contributing member of the household (chores, caring for younger sibs, rent-paying) and is not respectful to the other members, then she should find other living arrangements. 

You're welcome to read my daughter's story in the archives.  My first post was called "Heading for estrangement."  I can tell you that at 17 and 18 we had a very challenging relationship, and it is much better now at 22. 

Wishing you all the best.  As my dear mom is fond of saying (and I never believed it at the time, but it is true), this, too, shall pass.

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Daughter in Laws and/or Son in Laws / Re: Mostly lurking at this point.
« on: November 28, 2017, 09:06:25 PM »
Welcome, PJPrimrose!  I, too, have spent a lot of time in the archives.  I wrote down some pearls of wisdom I found there for future reference, and they have guided me through some rough patches.  I'm glad you are finding some guidance there, too.  Even though the stories are unique, there are common patterns and philosophies.  As I read posts from forums other than this one, I'm also appreciative of the gentle, supportive nature of WWU.  Wishing you the best on your journey!

12
Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Should I speak up?
« on: November 26, 2017, 10:57:52 PM »
I appreciate your sharing about your DS and your niece.  It takes time to see how a relationship will go, and so much depends on the motivation and persistence of the two partners.  Your niece and her husband seemed to have it.  Your son has exhibited it up to this point, and he is probably seeing some things about DIL differently than he did in the past.  The other thing is he is seeing how she interacts with their young children as their mother, which he probably never could have predicted before they became parents.  I can just imagine how hard it is for you to come off sounding neutral when he shares his insights with you.  Good job!  I'll bet he doesn't really have others to confide in about this situation, certainly not anyone else who knows everyone involved like you and your DH do.  You're in a unique position to offer a safe place for him to express himself.

My DD's BF called me on Thanksgiving to wish me and my family a happy day, and called again today to say he and DD were safely in the city they drove to overnight for his relative's funeral.  He told me when they would be driving back, planned a day to come visit us, and asked me if he could take her on a driving trip to visit other family members next month.  It was sweet.  Seems like he is trying hard to make her happy and connect with his and our families. 

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Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Should I speak up?
« on: November 26, 2017, 11:15:20 AM »
Thanks, StillLearning.  There are issues that I think would best be handled that way, such as how they each spend/save money or how many hours they each work.  But what about drinking too much and getting into fights?  I don't want to give her the message that she just has to accept that (actually, when she relayed an incident recently, I just listened - I'm pretty proud of myself).  Her last relationship had issues when ex-BF drank too much and became abusive, so I thought she'd have her eyes wide open regarding alcohol use this time around.  Sigh....  Maybe this is a rebound relationship and it will take a few more to really learn the lesson. 

Also it seems I have to practice detaching from her relationship drama. I was optimistic about this guy so it's been a disappointment to hear of DD's recently expressed concerns.

More practice ....  :-\

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Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Re: Should I speak up?
« on: November 25, 2017, 10:08:25 PM »
That was really helpful, Luise.  Hopefully I will be able to benefit from your experiences.  I wish I could tell DD about the red flag.  I think part of her knows, but another part desperately wants this to be her forever love.  The counseling idea is good.  It was useful for me when I needed clarity.  At any rate, there will be learning from this relationship, as you say.  Same as from the last one.  We hope the lessons transfer from one relationship to the next.

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Adult Sons and/or Adult Daughters / Should I speak up?
« on: November 25, 2017, 08:05:21 PM »
Hello, Wise Women!
My DD has a new guy in her life - and that's good in that the abusive ex-BF is unequivocally out.  Big sigh of relief there!  New BF seems friendly, kind and hard-working.

My new dilemma is this: DD has confided in me some things that new BF needs to change about himself to be a better partner.  What is my role here?  Listen and shut my mouth?  What about when she asks my opinion?  I know she is carefully "reading" my facial expression and non-verbals, and it's unfortunately too easy for me to speak up, even if it's just in a generic way about relationships, or examples of situations that I know of that are similar to what she is facing.

True confession: There are some things that I wish she hadn't shared with me and I worry that more is coming as the two of us  spend more time together next month. Does anyone have any experience in dealing with an AC sharing too much information?   

She has a tendency to move quickly in relationships, and I worry that she will be married within a year, with children soon to follow.  They've only been a couple for a few months and already she is living with him and his roommates.  I've spoken up about that - she claims she had to get out of a bad roommate situation (it WAS awful) and there is no one else to live with.  But I'm sure this is her number one preference anyway.

Any opinions are greatly appreciated.

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