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Friendship, advice and support if estrangement has affected your life

(1001 Posts)
Smileless2012 Wed 26-Jul-23 10:56:25

I've been trying to think of something different to say in the OP for this new support thread but was reminded of the old adage 'if it aint broke, don't try to fix it'.

The longevity and success of the support thread speaks for itself, so we just need to keep doing what we do which is being there for one another and giving a warm welcome to anyone new who comes along.

Justbecause Sat 05-Aug-23 08:10:40

Good Morning all on this new thread.
It’s raining and windy today so won’t be venturing outside unless it changes.

I can’t believe it’s already a week since my D’s wedding. Thankfully they had some sunshine.

I enjoyed the ceremony and chatting to some people at the drinks reception. They also had an ice cream van after the ceremony parked up in the front of the venue which people enjoyed.

It was lovely to see them get married and so happy. There were lots of pictures taken and I was part of a few.
My D has since thanked me for going.

It did feel odd not staying longer, but when I look back tbh I wouldn’t have wanted to stay longer. Just being there to witness their wedding was a wonderful memory made that I will cherish.

After the last few months and all the hurt I’ve felt after being treated in such an unkind way I’ve realised I never want to be put through that hurt or extreme devastation again.

I can feel that our relationship has changed forever. It is sad, but I’ve learnt I must look after me now. My D is a grown woman and married. If she wants me in her life she knows where I am.

I don’t want anymore arguments or horrid words said. I’m not going to put myself through anymore pain or take anymore emotional abuse. Or made to feel terrible for things that happened many years ago. We all move forward and Im going to look after myself first.

Walking away is hard but it is necessary so that I can change the relationship in the future and protect myself from being treated in such a disrespectful way.

I’m keeping the door open for a positive, respectful friendship, whatever it may be in the future. I will be her Mum when she wants me to be, but it will take time and I’m determined to not let myself get caught up in this emotional drama again.

Let’s all live happy lives looking forward to positive experiences with the people that do love and value us.

Happy August weekend thanksflowers to all smile


Smileless2012 Sat 05-Aug-23 09:29:43

Morning everyone.

Hope you're feeling a little better today Spring and you're resting and taking care of yourself while you recover.

There's that brief moment isn't there Yogin when you wonder what the best response would be. I just say we have two sons, one who lives in Aus. and if asked about GC, that we have two but they're our youngest son's who we're estranged from so have never had a relationship with them.

I'm able to do that now in a 'matter of fact' way; no tears and no outward emotion which enables the conversation to move on.

It's so good to see such a positive post Justbe and to know that you enjoyed seeing your D get married smile. Walking away is hard, but necessary to enable you to re frame your relationship so that you can be protected from any further emotional abuse.

Attending the ceremony and staying for drinks and photo's shows your love for her and your willingness for your relationship to continue, and stepping back shows your strength and courage to take control over your own life. She's your D, you love her and want her in your life, but not at the expense of your own welfare and happiness.

Thank you for posting today; you're an inspiration smile.

Well I'm about half way through Sharon's new book. It isn't one you can read in 'one go' and TBH I've found some of the content a challenge and upsetting.

There's something about seeing the pain you've experienced in 'black and white' that really brings home to you just how terrible that experience has been, and continues to be.

I've shed tears, usually when trying to read sections out to
Mr. S. and have seen the tears in his eyes too sad. We've always talked about and despite having done so for more than 10 years, have found ourselves discussing aspects that we'd never really talked about to one another before.

Another wet and miserable day here but I'm looking forward to going to our lodge tomorrow and fingers crossed that the forecast is right and the weather will improve in the middle of next week.

My cousin's sent a video of part of Monday's concert and you know what, we sound pretty good grin.

Have a good day everyone.

hugshelp Sat 05-Aug-23 23:01:57

Goodness, this thread has got off to a flying start.
It's good to read of your progress NanaLouise. I think you'd be sensible to do a lot of listening, watching and learning while you see what's going on, but I do hope things go well.

What a complicated state of affairs DL.. I do hope they all get their acts together and work something out that really is for the best.

Hope you are soon fully recovered Spring.

The wedding sounds lovely JB You seem to have a really good handle on setting your boundaries.

I'm sure you sound wonderful Smiles.. I'm glad you got the video.

Yoginimeisje Sun 06-Aug-23 09:22:08

Morning all

Well, I had a lovely time at my DD 40th birthday 'do'. My son drove us there, so I was able to a have a few G&Ts.

Didn't need to worry about my ex being there and causing trouble as he was denied entry onto the plane as he's travel visa was out of date grin

Yoginimeisje Sun 06-Aug-23 09:34:22

Lovely to hear from you Justbe and lovely to hear you enjoyed your time at your D wedding. Thanks for getting back with this update. It was sad to read the rest of your post, but what else can you do than what you are doing now.

When I got home from my DD 40th and into bed, I realised I hadn't given my estD a thought the whole evening. Isn't that amazing! Before I would have been thinking of her & my DGC, thinking what a shame it was that they weren't there enjoying such a lovely occasion & being part of our family's memory making.

Yoginimeisje Sun 06-Aug-23 09:42:05

Oh dear Smiles re the book, that's why I didn't want to read it. Weather is dry and sunny today, so I hope it continues that way so you can enjoy your stay at your lodge. Nice to hear your concert went well and you are pleased with the resulting sounds of your voice.

crazyH Sun 06-Aug-23 10:12:25

Thanks Smileless for re-opening this invaluable thread. It helped me through my dark times. Though things are on an even keel at the moment, I have the next generation to deal with . Oldest grandson is 21. 😫
Love and best wishes to everyone - gorgeous sunshine today. Enjoy ! xx

Smileless2012 Sun 06-Aug-23 14:25:36

It's so good to know that things are on an even keel for you at the moment crazy and long may that continuesmile.

Oh I know Yoginsad but there have also been sections that have been comforting and validating. She does say it isn't for those newly estranged and I can see why.

Smileless2012 Sun 06-Aug-23 14:27:21

Meant to say we're now at our lodge and guess what, we have sunshineshock.

Moonwatcher1904 Sun 06-Aug-23 14:38:02

Some of the people on here will remember that I too had problems with my daughter several months ago. Nasty text and blocking me. I was devastated at the time. I didn't reply to her for a good while but she came round in the end when a lot of her mail was being sent to our address. She was sorry in the end and now we are back on track. However, I had some great support on here telling me what to do and it helped immensely.

Smileless2012 Sun 06-Aug-23 14:40:50

That is good news Moonwatcher. Thank you for letting us know that you're back on track and that the support thread helped you smile.

Leaves1 Sun 06-Aug-23 16:41:09

I hope real soon I can find a new begining in my life. A life that has been devastated through estrangement from my S, DL and grandchildren aged now 6 and 8. I was forced to sell my house as they moved up the road from me. I couldn't put up with the verbal abuse, lies and cruelty. Very controlling, used the G C as weapons. I have not see them for 5 years. It is heartbreaking. My S is very harsh and cruel and my DL is manipulative and potentally dangerous. I now rent 10 miles away and still looking to buy a place to try and begin to live again.

Smileless2012 Sun 06-Aug-23 17:44:18

Hello Leaves and a warm welcome to the support thread. I'm glad you've found us, but sorry that you need to be here flowers.

We did the same and moved out of the house and village because our ES and only GC lived just up the road, so I do understand.

Living so close and never knowing when you'll see them is like having the knife twisted on a daily basis so after 4 years. 6.5 years ago we moved and it was the best thing we could have done.

You've done the right thing and I hope that you'll find somewhere soon to buy and begin living your life again.

It is heartbreaking but there is life after estrangement and here you will find those who truly understand because we live it too, so now you've posted, I hope you'll do so again.

Leaves1 Sun 06-Aug-23 19:32:22

Hello Smileless2012
Thank you so much for your most welcoming post. It means such a lot and at last I have wrote a little here to express the awful experience of estrangement that sadly so many share.

I am sending my best wishes to you and everyone who is affected by estrangement.
May we all feel, when we can, true love and new self

Smileless2012 Sun 06-Aug-23 20:57:43

You're welcome Leaves and everyone here knows how important it is to be able to talk about our estrangements, and how much courage it takes to make that first post.

Sandy11 Mon 07-Aug-23 09:23:59

Hi all. This is my first post. I don't do this kind of thing often. I am a 69 yr old grandmother who has never seen her grandchildren. Estranged by my children 16 yrs ago, I still don't know why. I do know that after years of doubt, guilt, anger, despair and near suicide, I have become strong and have learned to accepted the situation. I have now set up the website for everyone around the world to add their name and location, so that one day our grandchildren will know we are waiting to hear from them. We have over 2m grandparents in the UK in this situation so get listed and let us have strength in numbers. There are also lots of support groups listed there too specifically for us so do take a look. Sandy

Smileless2012 Mon 07-Aug-23 10:31:58

Thank you Sandy for providing the link.

It's good that there are support groups as well as this thread, where EP's can share their experiences and seeing how others like you, and us here have managed to rebuild our lives.

Doubt, guilt, anger and despair are all things we can identify with but I'm so sorry that you were near suicidal because of your estrangement.

Taking your pain and putting it to good use by setting up the website is admirable. Being able to support and help others means that some good can come from such a traumatic and life changing situation flowers.

Bonny12 Tue 08-Aug-23 03:19:01

Hello Gransnet! You have no idea how much this forum/ site has helped me over the years. (Thanks)
I first joined Gransnet 5 years ago after my DD pulled the plug on our relationship. ( First Post) Taking with her two granddaughters 3 and 18 months that my husband and I were very close to. My DD has since had two more daughters who I have never met.
Tried everything, just abuse back initially then silence…
I recently had a serious mental breakdown in March this year and hospitalised for 4 days, partly because of the situation with my DD and other family members, plus a miss diagnosis during the pandemic.
My oldest son (divorced) remarried one year ago has taken away my/our access to our two GS 11 and 10, because I was in hospital. No explanation, no contact with my DS now, he told his ex wife that he doesn’t want us to see them anymore. That really hurts.
EX DL stuck in the middle and has a new baby 6 weeks ago. She has been very supportive, but can’t let us see the boys if my DS says No!
Two other sons, one lives 30 minutes away has two daughters, (2 GD) I see sporadically, he’s a controlling (with partner) functioning alcoholic, cannabis taker many years.
2nd oldest son lives over two hrs away, has three children, divorced and and see GC rarely. DS has ADHD, high functioning alcoholic also, and drug taker.
For the first time in my life, I am learning with help from two amazing counsellor’s both through the NHS and private counselling. To keep away from people who are not going to do me any good, including my family.
Whatever happens in the future, for anyone else in my situation.
Stay safe, and look after your self. Xx

Whiff Tue 08-Aug-23 06:06:34

Just wanted to let you know I am still here and will be back rambling soon. Glad to see new posters so they know they are not alone dealing with estrangement. That's why this thread is so important.

I saw link to grandparents register on another thread a while ago. Don't know if it's the same one . But will not be registering . If my grandson's want to find me when they are older they can as I am not moving . Also electoral register is open to everyone and can find people that way. But everyone has to do what helps them.

Having problems with high pain levels so much so phoned my GP Friday to ask to be referred to the pain clinic. But back rambling soon.
Take care all.

Smileless2012 Wed 09-Aug-23 08:58:08

Hello Bonny. I'm so sorry that you have now been estranged by your son especially as your D's estrangement has taken such a toll on your mental health being partially responsible for your breakdown just a few months ago.

How cruel of your son to do this to you, knowing what a devastating affect your D's estrangement has had. It's a shame that your ex d.i.l. is unable to stand up to her ex and allow you to see your GC. He has no right to dictate who can and cannot see their children when they are with her.

It's good to know that you're being helped by your two counsellors and learning to set your own boundaries which can help protect you from any further hurt.

You can never imagine that you'd ever need to keep away from your own children because being in contact with them does you harm. It's a difficult and painful lesson flowers.

How are your pain levels Whiff? I hope you've managed to get them under control flowers.

Mr. S. registered us on the national grandparents register. It's not what I'd have done as I really wouldn't want to be contacted by our GS's when they're young men. Having never known the youngest and not really knowing the eldest as he was just 8 months old when we last saw him, I'd rather keep it that way.

I'd worry about why they'd made contact, what they'd been told by their parents and if we could ever really trust them.

Another lovely morning here at our lodge. Sat outside yesterday afternoon for a couple of hours with my book while Mr. S. was bowling; haven't done that for a while.

Our cockapoo found a hedge hog when she went out just before bed last night but Mr. S. stopped her from getting too close and the night before, I saw a bat and we had a tawny owl in the tree next to our lodge. It's lovely to have a complete change of scene and be in the country side.

The dogs are enjoying their little holiday, really love it here. It's the only place where our little poodle gets excited about going out for walk!!!

Yoginimeisje Wed 09-Aug-23 10:20:32

Nice to hear your good news Moonwatcher I too wish I had found this thread at the beginning of my estrangement and had had all the good advice that's on here to help me deal with, a then, unknown situation.

Yoginimeisje Wed 09-Aug-23 10:24:09

Sorry have to go, read more later....

Smileless2012 Wed 09-Aug-23 10:34:02

We were so ill informed weren't we Yogin. Had no idea how common it was because people understandably didn't want to talk about it. The shame and the guilt could only be remedied by knowing that we weren't the only ones, and we learned how common the causes are, the similarities for so many of us are striking.

We found one another and the few who were here too, but it's what we've learned over the last 10 years that would have been so beneficial if we'd been told then, what we know now.

The most important thing for me would have been to know that although it feels like it at the time, our lives aren't over. Estrangement doesn't define who we are and what we can be. We can find peace and happiness without them.

Our lives will never be how we'd thought they'd be and no one can take the place of the children and GC we've lost, but life goes on.

Spring20 Wed 09-Aug-23 16:00:15

Had a look at the National grandparents website - shocked by the statistic that an estimated 2 million gparents are alienated from gchildren in just the UK. With a population of all ages at 67 million, that seems an awful lot. And many of us are not on any official register so the number likely to be higher. To all of us here, especially the new folk, you aren’t alone! I echo what’s been said - when it first happens you wonder if you will even survive the pain of loss and what feels like a life sentence. But we do….and though different, you eventually discover life can still be good. It takes a process of acceptance though, and learning to protect ourselves. As others have said, not sure I’m in the right place to read another book on estrangement just now, but will bear it in mind Smileless. And coming on this thread to ‘connect’ is something I find soothes me, as I know I’m amongst those who get it and are valiantly living life appreciating what we have, not dwelling on what we haven’t and can’t change. Sun is shining, and I’m unashamedly sitting in the garden enjoying it!

Yoginimeisje Thu 10-Aug-23 08:27:36

Leaves so sorry to read your story. I too felt very unsafe, asked police if I could have a direct link to them, but they said no. I put panic buttons on every door and above my bed, dreading coming in at night after my work as they threated to kill my little dog, a Westie. I was told to leave the country for my safety, took that to be a death threat! Torn up book on my driveway [had sent to D via Amazon on the impact est. has on a GP] and my neighbour phoned me when I was out telling me they were in my house! Lost about 1.5stones as couldn't eat, couldn't sleep!

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