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Things to avoid saying to an estranged parent

(151 Posts)
VioletSky Sun 24-Jul-22 20:13:14

I couldn't find a comparable list so I hope to hear from you.

What things would you like people to avoid saying?

Unless you have a link to share?

Hithere Sun 24-Jul-22 20:42:38

Sadly I couldn't find it either

Smileless2012 Sun 24-Jul-22 23:04:20

You must have done something
You must have said something
Life's too short
Unconditional love
He's your son
She's your daughter
AC don't estrange good loving parents
In most cases estrangement is due to abuse by the parent(s)
In most cases estrangement is due to a toxic relationship with the parent(s)
If your AC is in an abusive/controlling relationship they must have concluded from their childhood that such relationships are normal and acceptable.
You do know why you've been estranged you're just not listening.
You do
know why you've been estranged, you just don't agree with the reason(s) why.

These are just off the top of my head, no link required. If I think of anymore I'll let you know.

Smileless2012 Sun 24-Jul-22 23:16:48

Just thought of another one

There's no smoke without fire

Gosh, that's 13 already!!

Smileless2012 Sun 24-Jul-22 23:18:30

Oooh two more

Your his/her mum
Your his/her dad

That's all for now folks as I'm off to bed.

VioletSky Sun 24-Jul-22 23:19:59

Thank you for sharing * Smileless*

Smileless2012 Sun 24-Jul-22 23:21:15

That should have been you're btw but it's late and I'm tired having had guests all evening.

Smileless2012 Sun 24-Jul-22 23:22:05

No worries vs thought it might be useful as you were unable to find a comparable list.

VioletSky Sun 24-Jul-22 23:23:44

We have guests but they went to the pub lol

I've trapped a nerve in my neck so stayed home and now they've gone to bed!

Plenty of time to go though

Smileless2012 Sun 24-Jul-22 23:27:05

We had them round for a BBQ but it rained so had to cook it all in doors. So much for an easy evening's entertaining with Mr. S. doing all the cooking, but hey ho we had fun and that's all that matters.

DiamondLily Mon 25-Jul-22 04:48:58

Oh, shame that it rained - nothing much beats a barbecue on a sunny day.?

The last time we went to my DDs for a BBQ, it was gorgeous all morning - but the minute we got there, the heavens opened up lol

My poor SIL had to cook outside, using a large umbrella while we all sat watching him through the French doors, waving and giving him encouragement...?

He's game, I've got to give him that!. ?

Smileless2012 Mon 25-Jul-22 08:19:25

Well it was tempting to shove Mr. S. outside with his umbrella but TBH it was just raining too hard DL.

Of course you can guess what happened when I'd finished cooking, yep that's right it stopped raining and 5 minutes later there was sunshine!!!

DiamondLily Mon 25-Jul-22 09:09:52


Well it was tempting to shove Mr. S. outside with his umbrella but TBH it was just raining too hard DL.

Of course you can guess what happened when I'd finished cooking, yep that's right it stopped raining and 5 minutes later there was sunshine!!!

Typical British weather...?

Glad you had a nice time anyway though - with our climate, we have to be adaptable.?

Allsorts Mon 25-Jul-22 12:53:00

Fortunately I don’t mix with judgemental people, only my close circle know, apart from someone that directly asked me and my answer was we are estranged but I don’t discuss it, if they don’t like it so what.. I think it wrong giving personal remarks if you don’t ask.

Smileless2012 Mon 25-Jul-22 13:01:55

I do my best to avoid them too Allsorts but it's not always easy is ithmm.

Two more for the list.

Blood's thicker than water.
A son's a son till he gets a wife, a daughter's a daughter for the rest of her life (I really hate that one).

Wow, that makes 17!!!

Chewbacca Mon 25-Jul-22 13:07:03

18. Children don't just walk away from a loving family!

Namsnanny Mon 25-Jul-22 13:13:51

I only discuss things like this with my husband or on here, so apart from seeing the list Smileless gave, and agreeing with her, (because I've seen those words used as accusations repeatedly on here), I couldnt give an answer.
Other than to say the question feels.....loaded.
A bit like when my Mother used to ask what hurt my feelings so she could avoid doing it, then promptly using the info to do just that. Wasnt she clever?
Dont you just love the British weather Smileless?☔ keeps us on our toes.

Chewbacca Mon 25-Jul-22 13:16:06

I don't think you're wrong Namsnanny

Namsnanny Mon 25-Jul-22 13:18:06


DiamondLily Mon 25-Jul-22 14:27:33

I don't discuss my stepson's bouncing estrangement with anyone much, in real life.

Partly, because my DH feels curiously "ashamed" that a son of his should have turned out to be such a money grabbing, self serving little ratbag,?

To discuss him, with either friends or my family, would feel like I'm just embarrassing my DH, so I don't do it.

To be honest, though, I know a lot of people that are estranged from family, in every direction, but it's rarely discussed. Most people are getting on with the "here and now", and not rehashing and reliving family fallouts, so I'm not sure who or where these people saying all the "wrong things" are.

The situation rarely changes, but I guess we just live real life around it, and make the best of it.

If anyone says to me they're estranged, I stick to just saying "oh that's a shame" - I never start apportioning blame!?

Smileless2012 Mon 25-Jul-22 14:57:45

That's where I've seen them all too Namsnanny here on GN I'm sorry to say. Does seem odd to start a thread with the title this one has and not actually post anything at all about what you should avoid saying to an EP confused.

I can understand why your DH feels ashamed DL. It's what EP's say time and time again. They feel they'll be judged and sadly often are.

If anyone tells me they're estranged I am able to say, 'so are we' and it's thanks to the support threads here on GN that I found the courage to be able too. Then, if they want to expand the conversation they can and it's often with relief that they realise they're not alone.

DiamondLily Mon 25-Jul-22 15:20:33

Yes, and, generally, unless there is a real reason, EP's have no need to feel ashamed.

If adult children choose to behave badly, then they bear the responsibility for it - no one else.?

Both DHs children agree he was a good Dad - so, in my head, the son wears "the badge of shame", not DH.

I just hate the way my DH is made to feel.?

Still, they say revenge is a dish best eaten cold, and, sooner or later, I will have my day with youngest Stepson...?

Namsnanny Mon 25-Jul-22 15:25:22

When I'm next asked by a stranger how many children or gchildren I have, I'm mulling over responses that cause the least fuss.

I'm considering leaving out the AC that has estranged us, and giving a different number as a reply.

I will feel badly, as lying makes me feel guilty.

Also I have a weird superstition that I might be closing the door on a future relationship with them by doing so.confused

But unfortunately (even though in my heart the hope that we will all get back together in some form of happy relationship still torments me), my head tells me this will never be.

Iam64 Mon 25-Jul-22 15:30:28

Namsnanny, I’ve heard the things you feel expressed many times. People ask how many children you had, then ask what they’re all doing now. It can be easier to reduce the numbers so avoid talking about sensitive, very personal things with a stranger.

VioletSky Mon 25-Jul-22 15:37:50

Namsnanny this thread exists because one exists for estranged children and it was suggested twice on that thread that a list for EPs was needed... so I started this one

It genuinely did not occur to me that by sharing a list from an estranged child perspective, anyone would ever to try to use that to more easily hurt estranged children.

I suppose you are right and abusive people would see that as a way to hurt others and invalidate them.

For my part, I am strong enough to let abusive people show themselves up so there is that.