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Estrangement

Never dreamt this could happen

(115 Posts)
velaine Thu 15-Apr-21 12:44:01

Hello all my first post i have been reading a lot of your stories and how sad they all truly are.

My son has cut us off we could actually see this coming years ago when he first got together with his partner which was his first girlfriend they went onto marry we went along with it all but wasnt 100% happy as there seemed to be a lot of lying by her and also controlling behaviour. Anyway, after walking on eggshells it has now come to this 😏.

My husband believes its a form of brainwashing but I would never have believed it , he was a good son caring and happy. He used to be a proper family person but now doesn’t have anything to do with any of them.

There is a poor gc involved now and we arent allowed contact with him either and can honestly say hand on heart we have done nothing to deserve this treatment.

Is it likely that things will change or do we need to just concentrate on us now and try to harden our hearts to have a normal future without whys? and tears and heartache. Thankyou so much for listening

GG65 Thu 15-Apr-21 13:01:10

when he first got together with his partner which was his first girlfriend they went onto marry we went along with it all but wasnt 100% happy as there seemed to be a lot of lying by her and also controlling behaviour

What do you mean by “we went along with it all”? You have no other option, it is your son’s life after all.

What kind of controlling behaviour did your DIL display?

he was a good son caring and happy. He used to be a proper family person but now doesn’t have anything to do with any of them.

When we marry and have children, they become our priority. Our relationships change and evolve as we get older. That all sounds very normal to me.

Hithere Thu 15-Apr-21 13:32:34

What gc65 said

keepingquiet Thu 15-Apr-21 13:37:36

We should always be open to the possibility of change, but concentrating on your own lives, your own health and well being is the way to go. It is the only control we have. Let them control their own lives too. It is the only way to stay sane,

Smileless2012 Thu 15-Apr-21 13:56:22

Hi velaine and welcome to GN. It's always so sad to hear from yet another estranged parent.

So the years of egg shell walking haven't saved you from this heartache; I'm so very sorry but hope that you'll be able with time, to get some comfort from the knowledge that you did everything you could to prevent this from happening and the this end result is not of your making.

It's shocking to see the AC we love, who was once so happy, loving and caring become someone we hardly recognise and when this does happen, it's often due to their partner who uses coercive control to manipulate and control.

They often reject their entire family. Our son has done the same apart from his brother but I do believe if it were not for the fact that he lives so far away in Australia, he'd have been estranged too.

"Is it likely that things will change"? I'm sorry but it does sound unlikely especially as you've been aware to a certain extent the nature of their relationship, which explains why you've been walking on egg shells.

You cannot harden your hearts, no matter how hard you try. If and when that happens, it happens over time and even a hardened heart continues to love the child whose hurt us so badly.

We've been estranged for more that 8 years from our son and only GC. There is life after estrangement and with time the tears are shed less frequently and the heartache which never goes away, does diminish too.

I don't think the why's ever go away either, it's just that you don't keep asking because there are no answers to be had.
flowers.

It may help you to post on the support thread on this forum and/or if you think it may help, please feel free to private message me.

Redhead56 Thu 15-Apr-21 14:30:56

I helped with my GC when they were prem and enjoyed it although it was tiring. Now we visit our DS and DD families when it suits them considering they now have nursery etc. (Pre covid days of course). We have had a few awkward times with their partners who on both sides are quite bossy.
Yes they marry and have their own lives but it's a shame when people are excluded for no good reason. I would send texts ask how they are send cards. Therefore at least you made the effort. Look after yourselves💐💐

Redhead56 Thu 15-Apr-21 14:34:54

I forgot to say welcome you will always get support here anytime💐

Blossoming Thu 15-Apr-21 16:28:20

What a shame, obviously I don’t know the people involved but presumably your son is happy with his wife. I think all you can do is be there ‘in the background’ so to speak, with birthday cards or short messages. Maybe things will calm down and reasonably amicable contact resumed one day, if you leave the door open flowers

Armadillo Thu 15-Apr-21 17:05:10

Hello, sorry you have become estranged. I don't really get eggshell walking because that is unnatural. I think we either are respectful and stay away from certain subjects which is easy to do in life as we are always around people with different opinions or are always making an atmosphere by being on eggshells and not being natural which other people will pick up on and will drive a wedge.
I think you would need to give some more information about controlling and lying as there is usually reasons people do that which might be helped.

Madgran77 Thu 15-Apr-21 17:11:53

Eggshell walking happens because of the fear of the consequences! Eggshell walking comes from "power" from some parties being used to control behaviours or to move towards a desired outcome. It has little to do with respect or staying away from certain subjects or differing opinions.

Madgran77 Thu 15-Apr-21 17:14:36

When we marry and have children, they become our priority. Our relationships change and evolve as we get older. That all sounds very normal to me.

but "now doesn’t have anything to do with any of them" (his birth family" does not sound normal to me! .

Patsy70 Thu 15-Apr-21 17:43:59

velaine, so sorry to hear of this and I do hope your son makes contact with you again soon. How sad that he appears to have married someone so manipulative, who has turned him against his loving parents. I think you should concentrate on your own lives now, but as suggested continue sending cards and messages. (A pity that the first 2 posts were so unkind!). flowers

GG65 Thu 15-Apr-21 17:48:30

Madgran77

*When we marry and have children, they become our priority. Our relationships change and evolve as we get older. That all sounds very normal to me.*

but "now doesn’t have anything to do with any of them" (his birth family" does not sound normal to me! .

Where parties are estranged, it sounds normal to me!

I’m assuming the OP was referring to the gradual withdrawal from the “birth” family by her son because I’m pretty sure he didn’t just go from “proper family person” to estranged overnight.

The gradual withdrawal I’m talking about would absolutely have happened. It was his first relationship - something that all young adults go through as they enter new chapters of their lives. It’s perfectly normal.

When we don’t allow our children the space to transition into the new chapters of their lives, problems arise.

Madgran77 Thu 15-Apr-21 17:54:18

When we don’t allow our children the space to transition into the new chapters of their lives, problems arise.

Very true although we don't know that is the problem in this particular case

I agree gradual withdrawal as part of growing up is normal. But not no contact atall ...yes normal in estrangement but not normal in normal processes like growing up and gradual withdrawal. To me these are two separate processes caused by different things, one "normal" and one not

Witzend Thu 15-Apr-21 17:54:18

So sorry, OP.
There are 2 families I know well, where I can’t for the life of me think the parents ever did anything amiss - thoroughly nice people and not at all the types to interfere or be demanding.

Yet in both cases a formerly loving son who was always happy to see his own family, has been influenced - or forced - by his wife to cut them off completely.
It’s terribly sad.
Obviously some in laws are a pain, but I don’t for a moment think that there has invariably been some cause for the estrangement.

Madgran77 Thu 15-Apr-21 17:55:22

Obviously some in laws are a pain, but I don’t for a moment think that there has invariably been some cause for the estrangement.

Exactly. Every case is different and no assumptions can be made about cause

Amberone Thu 15-Apr-21 17:58:12

we went along with it all but wasnt 100% happy as there seemed to be a lot of lying by her and also controlling behaviour.

What lying and controlling behaviour was there??

Did you discuss the fact that you weren't happy with your son? If so, he may have talked about it with his wife. Can't imagine it would have made either of them happy to know you disapproved.

Madgran77 Thu 15-Apr-21 18:00:22

Did you discuss the fact that you weren't happy with your son? If so, he may have talked about it with his wife. Can't imagine it would have made either of them happy to know you disapproved

True. Pity they didn't all get it out in the open, if that was the case. But then eggshell walking makes that hard.

GG65 Thu 15-Apr-21 18:15:42

Madgran77

*When we don’t allow our children the space to transition into the new chapters of their lives, problems arise.*

Very true although we don't know that is the problem in this particular case

I agree gradual withdrawal as part of growing up is normal. But not no contact atall ...yes normal in estrangement but not normal in normal processes like growing up and gradual withdrawal. To me these are two separate processes caused by different things, one "normal" and one not

No, we don’t.

But I’ll be honest. I have a real problem with the controlling DIL narrative. I really do.

Sara1954 Thu 15-Apr-21 19:26:37

Armadillo
Trust me, eggshell walking is the alternative to upsets, accusations, and rows.
All our family are like this with one member of our family. We all love her, she’s a good, lovely funny person, but she’s riddled with insecurities, suspects us of ganging up on her, misreads a lot of what we say, and has a distorted view of the past.
We do not want her to be unhappy, so we constantly walk on eggshells, sometimes it’s the only way.

Madgran77 Thu 15-Apr-21 21:05:24

GG65 But I’ll be honest. I have a real problem with the controlling DIL narrative. I really do

It happens in some relationships that one partner is controlling. It doesn't in others. It is a cause of estrangement in some families, in others the causes are different.

I think it is good to help posters to consider all aspects and possibilities for why they are in the position that they are, including where they might have caused problems. But it has to start from their perspective of the problems. And no assumption that they did cause the problems, maybe they did, maybe they didn't.

Your original questions to the OP were pertinent. It is up to her whether she wishes to reply or not.

Katie59 Thu 15-Apr-21 21:42:37

I’m sorry Velaine, you say you were not 100% happy and could see it happening, honestly the best thing you can do is leave newly weds alone and let them do things their way.

You probably said something inadvertently or gave the wrong impression, it could literally been anything, all you can do now is let them get along with their own lives. Make contact at Christmas, birthdays, etc, it’s not what you wanted, it’s not what I wanted but that’s the way it is. Until of course they want something.

Armadillo Fri 16-Apr-21 04:21:45

Sorry I didn't get it before as I haven't been in that situation. My mum she always said it and she was rude and conrolling and always telling me what I should think and how I should feel and what I should like and obviously I didnt fight her on that till now. I have never had to walk on eggshells around anyone but maybe that is because I've never stood up for myself till now.
I think some peopls know how my mum was abusive and know how to push me like she did and I need to stay quiet but not let it bother me. Then I will be better and stronger than them and they can waste their time as mum does now I have her blocked every way and I have moved ha ha

Smileless2012 Fri 16-Apr-21 08:43:46

Great posts Madgransmile.

Alexa Fri 16-Apr-21 08:45:00

Is it possible your daughter in law is a snob who wants only to socialise with those who are richer/better educated/ whiter/ more self confident/ bigger house/posher relations/ etc. ?

It is an unfortunate fact that a woman who habitually shares a pillow with a man does influence his ideas; that is why it is called 'pillow talk'. See Samson and Delilah.