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adult daughter problem, please help

(21 Posts)
Ziggy62 Mon 02-Nov-15 13:58:23

my daughter is 25, she lives away and we only get to meet up 3 or 4 times a year. we talk/text most days. Her father died 8 years ago and she doesnt like fact I have a new partner, although she has only met him once. She has dyspraxia,which was only diagnosed when she went to university a few years ago. Although I knew when she was 3 that there was a problem. She is doing well, has lovely partner, has returned to uni recently to study for her masters, bought an apartment, has good social life BUT she is so rude and uncaring, especially towards me! A friend of mine died over weekend from a heart attack. He had a problem with alcohol so my daughter just told me she isnt interested as he was an alcoholic and his family are "fools if there werent expecting this". Not for the first time I am shocked by her attitude and I told her so. She replied that she "has always told it how it is" and doesnt feign sympathy for people she doesnt like. Her father had a problem with alcohol and died of a cancer probably connected with this, she was very close to him but more or less told me last week I should never have married him and had her! I could go on and on but wouldnt know where to stop. She has suffered depression for some years and has been offered counselling but says she cant talk to anyone about the way she feels. On one hand I desperately want to help her but on the other hand I cant deal with her constant criticism and rudeness

rosesarered Mon 02-Nov-15 14:10:29

It's obviously always been a problem for you, and you have my sympathy.
along with the Dyspraxia and depression, could there be another underlying problem? she sees things in black and white, and is simplistic in her views of others , which is immature.She may feel that you are giving affection to a new person in your life, which detracts from affection shown to her.Assure her you love her just the same, but need a little adult happiness in your life.

Luckygirl Mon 02-Nov-15 14:19:45

There will be complex threads of feeling going on here; and her depression will be a big factor. All you can do is be Mum; be the adult. What we do as parents is offer unconditional love and they need this when they are grown as much as when they are small. I hope you will find your own way of dealing with all this. Maybe remembering the child within might help. Good luck. flowers

elena Mon 02-Nov-15 14:33:34

sad must be hurtful, Ziggy, but I agree with Luckygirl. Remembering that she is like everyone else - needing unconditional love.

It sounds like you have a great relationship, seeing you are in contact most days despite the distance.

It's not fair for your dd to expect you to accept rudeness and unkindness, though, and from what you say, you are able to challenge her when she shows her rude and uncaring side. It's fine to tell her you are not prepared to put up with personal criticism and lack of manners.Being unhappy is not a 'get out of jail free' card to be horrible to other people.

Continue to challenge her, model in your own way kindness and non-judgmentalism, and continue to suggest counselling or other treatment for her emotional and mental well-being.

ninathenana Mon 02-Nov-15 14:44:13

I think it's possible she has other problems. Dyspraxia and lack of empathy can be linked to other conditions. I don't want to say anymore but maybe a bit of research would be useful.
I don't profess to be an expert just MHO.
Good luck, I hope you and DD find a solution flowers

Ziggy62 Mon 02-Nov-15 15:35:55

thank you all so much for replies, she can be such fun at times, with a wonderful sense of humour. But yes, as mentioned, she has always been the same and after 25 yrs it can get extremely tiring do deal with, especially on days like today when i dont feel particularly good myself.
My mother has narcissistic personality disorder and my grandmother spent most of her adult life in a mental institution, I do sometimes wonder if she has more than dyspraxia and dyslexia. She also has hemiplegic migraine, asthma, eczema, so life isnt easy for her. I try to be understanding but some days I just want to walk away (but obviously I wouldnt). she has been offered help so many times and the last time I gently pushed her to take up the offer of counselling she got very angry with me and stated she was never discussing her depression again, seems I cant win.

Nonnie Mon 02-Nov-15 16:30:19

I have no experience to offer but do want to express my heartfelt feelings for what you are suffering. Imo there is very little you can do because the relationship you have with her has been established for such a long time. I think only a dispassionate outsider can help.

However, you can just nicely say that you don't wish to talk about things when you find her behaviour unpalatable. Nothing wrong with being really nice and show enjoyment when she is being pleasant and just simply refusing to be involved when she is not. Rather like rewarding good behaviour and ignoring bad with a small child.

loopylou Mon 02-Nov-15 17:03:37

I too think ninathenana that there could be other underlying problems but that's no excuse for atrocious behaviour towards you.

Anya Tue 03-Nov-15 06:23:19

You only meet a few times a year so these conversations are carried out by text or phone.

Have you thought about changing the tone of the conversation and avoiding subjects likely to get a negative response?

I find this works well with my daughter and DiL.

Ziggy62 Tue 03-Nov-15 19:53:40

hard to say what will cause a negative response tbh. She just speaks her mind and sometimes it can be very hurtful. We had much better chat today, I guess I was upset at death of friend and just took it all to heart

Anya Tue 03-Nov-15 19:58:10

Then don't be drawn in and terminate the phone call with some excuse 'someone at door, bye' for example, or if a text don't reply to anything negative.

Ziggy62 Wed 04-Nov-15 18:44:30

well, had chat with her on facebook (private messaging) today, all going well then she made comment about not wanting children and hinting her childhood wasnt good SO I just said 'gotta go now and stuff a butternut squash, chat soon xxxx'

jinglbellsfrocks Wed 04-Nov-15 18:58:55

If she is "doing well, has lovely partner, has returned to uni recently to study for her masters, bought an apartment, has good social life", why do you think she needs your help?

It does seem to be you who needs help, in dealing with her. As you only see her a very few times a year, why do you bother? I would advise, if she is nasty to you, be nasty right back. She needs to realise that you are an individual, with feelings. Don't let her get away with it. What have you got to lose?

Ziggy62 Wed 04-Nov-15 19:09:54

I bother because she is my daughter and i love her to bits. I wont go into detail but she had to fight hard to make it into this world and although I get upset at her behaviour I'm not walking away. I cant see being nasty back will achieve anything. As mentioned in earlier post, I now just ignore her rude behaviour but no way will I be taking your advice. thanks for reply anyway

jinglbellsfrocks Wed 04-Nov-15 19:32:39

Well, I can only say how I would deal with it. I'd be honest. Probably not 'nasty' as such, but I wouldn't stand for it. Why should we be the ones getting hurt? They are adults.

Marelli Thu 05-Nov-15 06:30:41

Ziggy62, one of my own daughters has, I think, undiagnosed dyspraxia. She's suffered from depression over the years and can be quite volatile. She's more or less estranged herself from us now, and that has been pretty heartbreaking, but I've done my damnedest to ler her know that I'm still here for her.
We are still 'Mum', aren't we? Perhaps when your DD remarked in her pm to you on Facebook, that she didn't want children because her own childhood wasn't that happy, she was looking for a reaction from you?
I can imagine how wearing this continual negativity is for you, even though you know she can't really help herself. She most probably would benefit from some sort of counselling, but she doesn't want it. That's her choice. Would it maybe help you, though - if you could speak to a counsellor about how you're feeling about it all?

Anya Thu 05-Nov-15 08:09:46

That's the way to go Ziggy - don't be drawn in smile.

Ziggy62 Thu 05-Nov-15 10:07:47

thanks for reply, Marelli. I had therapy after the death of my husband and dad (both from cancer), it certainly helped but I dont feel I need to go back for more. I guess I was just hoping someone else on here may have an adult child on the autistic spectrum and may understand. There is lots of help out there for parents of young children but little or none for parents of adult children. Sorry to hear you are coping with a similar experience, here if you need to talk

Thanks Anya, It's not always easy but I'm not gonna be drawn in, life is too short

Marelli Thu 05-Nov-15 10:17:51

Ziggy62, thank you. smile I've more or less come to terms with DD's choices and am reassured by the fact that she has a really good support network in the friends that she has. DD is very involved with local and national politics, and fights tooth and nail to do as much as she can for those she feels are downtrodden. So I must have done something right wink.
I suggested counselling as it did help me tremendously over another family issue ( Gransnetters helped me no end, as well).
Hopefully, someone here will be able to help you, too. As the day goes on, I'm sure you'll get some more replies. x

Ziggy62 Tue 10-Nov-15 15:49:06

well, my taking a step back and not getting upset seems to be working. I'm heading to England next week for friend's funeral and daughter has booked table at lovely restaurant for us (including her partner and mine!!!) I am rather shocked. We're staying in my old home town which means she will have to get train over to meet us so I am hoping this is the beginning of a new way for me to deal/cope with her.

My next hurdle is to tell her i'm getting engaged at Christmas but one step at a time lol

shysal Tue 10-Nov-15 16:21:34

Hope it all works out well for you Ziggy, and congratulations on your engagement. flowers