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Widow estranged from Adult daughters - How can I find any purpose to go on?
January 13, 2018
8:17 pm
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Teresa
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January 13, 2018
8:06 pm
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Teresa
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January 13, 2018
7:26 am
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Fred
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Good morning Teresa:

My name is showing up too much on this forum, and I do not want to monopolize this forum.

However, there are two posts that are truly sad, and my emotions are pushing me to respond.

Listen to your words, "Angela was consistent and rigid."   Angela presented a strong, in charge demeanor. Think objectively about that. 

Let's concentrate on you right now. I've read your long post and it does not reveal if you moved away from the first source of pain. If you still live in the house where your young husband met his sudden demise, that may not good for you emotionally. Think about that. In my 65 years I have felt, and witnessed that places, homes, objects, and definitely folks, can carry an aura of many layers.

It's time for you to stand tall, create some memories, and embrace aura of your heart beating.  Perhaps you can suggest a meeting with your girls after you are standing erectly. Our adult children run from pain, weakness, and the possibility that we might lean on them. In other words, they do not want to change positions with us. Teresa, you have no choice, you have to become stronger, they need you to be the good Mama that you always were. I empathize with your depression, you have many reasons to feel that way. One thing that made me know that I was a bonafide adult, is when I realized that I was not just living for me. My kids needed me to be present, alive, and strong.  Do it Teresa, this is going to be a better year for all of us. Simply, because we are all astute enough to post for help.

January 13, 2018
7:13 am
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onestepatatime
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Perhaps its is time to stop begging the adult children for some time for you. This would make anyone depressed. Sometimes we have to step out of our comfort zone and create or make a good life. Its easy to say I can't because... I'm old, I'm sick, whatever. I understand your ill health, me too. But we can't expect other people to make us feel good about ourselves, it comes from within. You've done all you can and for whatever reason your adult children aren't nice to you, mine aren't either. You did your best but they aren't nice people it sounds like. Its hard as a parent to realize our adult children are not likable, don't have good people behavior. Like you, I am at a crossroads where I have been ill and am facing a loss of my social life which can be very depressing. Its up to me to fix that if I want it fixed, and I know it isn't easy to do, it makes me feel weird like you feel. But we can't give up, life is worth living, you have value even if your adult kids don't see it. My life has become small also and it ain't fun. Challenge yourself every day to do something new, go outside for a longer walk, find a volunteer work that brings you in contact with people, even if you don't feel well. I know, I am taking my own advice, but we can do it. I read Dr. Coleman's book and also a book called Done with the Crying which is about moving forward. I highly recommend that book to help you move forward. 

January 12, 2018
3:56 pm
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Teresa
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I am severely depressed, anxious, widowed 60 year old woman and who has over the last 6-7 years become increasing estranged from my two adult daughters (27 and 29).  Both married to nice guys. I hardly hear from them, they seldom return texts and they basically have melding into another couple as their informally adopted mom and dad cut me out of their lives. I wonder what I have done so awful for them to never have time for me but make time for others to communicate their day to day life. The pain is really unbearable and I wonder how I can even go on with my life. What's the point if you have no family? 

I became widowed at 34 years old and my husband was 35 years old when he died falling off our roof. My daughters were 3 1/2 years old and 13 months at the time. We just moved from out of state so I had few friends and no family around for support. My brother and sister I have we unavailable to me because we came from a severely dysfunctional family of origin. People came for the funeral and never came back to visit and this included my husband's family. To say the least, I was a mess for many years and the abandonment I felt as a child was reactivated along with my grief over the loss of my husband. In fact, the abandonment of my adult daughters today also opens the wounds of my childhood being in foster homes and separated during all of my childhood from my mentally ill mother.

So, you might guess I didn't want to be a single parent as I knew I didn't have the skills needed from my family of origin but I tried the best I could and spent 10's of thousands of dollars in therapy over many years to do better than my parents did for me. I tried dating a few times and it never worked out partially because I think my picker was broken and the men I dated were not physically abusive but emotionally and my codependency left me staying in relationships longer than I should of. No one ever spent the night but the relationships did cause me grief which my daughters viewed in me. I gave up the few attempts at dating and hung out with friends, took my kids to soccer, gymnastics and on trips to various places like Canada, Mexico and the Czech Republic and tried to make sure they had all they needed including pets and friends and help with school. But being a single part 24/7 was exhausting and I would lose it when time after time the kids would push boundaries and after 5 times of asking nicely to clean their rooms or messes, I would yell. I never physically abused them because I knew what that looked like and didn't want that for my kids. Interestingly enough my oldest says I beat her and it didn't happen. Where did she get that, I can't say?

There was a woman neighbor (I'll call Angela) who I befriended just before my husband died. Angela and her husband are strict fundamentalist Christians and after my husband died they watched my girls from time to time. They had lots of nieces and nephews and pretty much adopted my kids. I am a Christian and although I had struggles with them over the years I felt they could offer my daughters the family I could not and bless them experiences say with horses and camping I could not. They also provided the only overnight breaks from the kids that I would have during their childhood. 

Fast forward, the girls and I had power issues as the reached their teens ganging up on me. Pretty much disrespecting me and my house rules. However, Angela was consistent, rigid and strict and they never ever did the same stuff at her house. And over time the girls adopted her black and white thinking in regards to me. They left home, moved back and finally I asked them each to move out a their different times because they wouldn't help around the house after trying to work with them. One moved in with Angela, went to trade school, got married and I was cut out of the wedding prep and barely hear from her afterward. The other daughter pretty much pushed me out of their life only to have plenty of time for Angela and her husband who live hours away from them. I tried continually reaching out, taking responsibility, asking for forgiveness for any hurt I have caused them which was tons more than my abusive parents ever did. My communication didn't see to help and has made thing worse. I have become more needy, depressed and to top it off I had to quite working 5 years ago because of prior injuries and now I suffer with health issues and chronic pain. My life became small and the few friends I had fell away. All I have is the companionship of my elderly dog. I dread the day she passes because that loss will be unbearable and I will truly be alone. I often see no reason for living if I have no family or anyone who cares about me. 

Sorry for the long dissertation but I wanted to vent and provide foundation. Any encouragement or support welcomed. I just never believed my life would turn out this way.

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