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Breakdown in relationship with daughter

(39 Posts)
hollie57 Wed 27-Jan-21 13:10:28

Hello everyone I need some advice from you I have just lost my mum at Christmas and we had the funeral which has been tough but I have now had a fall out with my daughter she was my mum’s favourite grandchild as she was her first ,since the funeral my daughter has been very off and upset and I have been heartbroken having looked after my mum for nearly 10 years 4 with dementia as well which has been very
difficult more or less on my own the trouble has been that due to covid I had to do most of the funeral arrangements with my brother ,I tried my hardest to make the funeral as full of love and family as possible asked my daughter if her sons could write a piece about there great grandmother and asked my daughter if she wanted to do anything or choose a song just let me know well now I am being accused by my daughter of not including her in all the arrangements and I have treated her disgusting since my mum died I just don’t know where this is all coming from she has had me in tears several times and so I put the phone down could not take anymore nastiness my brother has tried asking her to apologise to me but she says no what do I do now I am so upset at how she is treating me but hate all this upset I really need my children at the moment as you can imagine how can I sort this out .sorry this is so long .thanks.

Namsnanny Wed 27-Jan-21 13:22:54

Putting aside all the understandable emotion just for a moment.
Is she feeling guilty for not seeing enough of her GM perhaps?

Is there a will, and is she in it?
Sorry if that sounds cold.

If she wont speak calmly to you, it you cant listen calmly to her (because the situation is so emotive) could you write to her?

This is a hard time for both of youflowers

NellG Wed 27-Jan-21 13:34:33

Oh Hollie, what an awful situation, I am so sorry. I think the clue here is that she was a favourite and maybe feels that closeness 'earned' her the right to be equally involved in the arrangements. But you did your best under extra difficult circumstances and unless you deliberately pushed her out you have nothing to feel bad about.

I suspect her grief over losing her grandmother is leaking out onto you. There are many stages of grief and anger is one of them, it seems she might be stuck in this phase and directing it at you.

One thing I will say is that she wont be able to help you with your grief whilst she's like this, so it's worth finding a safe, neutral person to support you (one who isn't going to take sides and potentially make things worse) It might even be worth talking to Cruse ( bereavement service). So very much do what you need to do to look after you, neglecting your needs in this wont help anyone.

These losses often bring out sides of us we didn't know were there, and bring up things we didn't know were a problem. it's sadly not an unusual story, and you are not alone. My mother's death catalysed rifts wishing our family. Some healed, some didn't.

For now it might be worth writing down why you did things the way you did - explain that Covid restrictions made thing such harder and how difficult it is to anticipate everyone's needs when you are in the throes of loss yourself. You might want to send it as a letter to your daughter, you might just want to keep it as a reference to your own thoughts and feelings on the matter.

Either way let your daughter know somehow that you are sorry she was hurt, it was never intended, that you are grieving too and that you would love to hear from her when she feels able to discuss things without upset on either side because you are human and she is loved. It's all you can do to be fair to her and yourself.

I hope things ease for you soon, and again, I'm so sorry for your loss.

NellG Wed 27-Jan-21 13:35:51

within* not wished.

EllanVannin Wed 27-Jan-21 13:36:44

A sad situation, but along with grief comes a certain amount of guilt, usually aimed at the nearest and dearest in the family, such as yourself. I would say that your DD is still grieving and hurting so I'd leave her be until this raw time in her life subsides. x

cornishpatsy Wed 27-Jan-21 13:40:41

People grieve in different ways. Anger is often a stage in the grieving process with close relations being at the brunt of it.

If too much is made of the anger it can cause a permanent rift. It is easier to deal with anger than sadness as an emotion, try not to take the anger out on each other but see it for what it is.

I would suggest that next time you speak acknowledge that anger is a stage of grief and you need each other at this time.

NotSpaghetti Wed 27-Jan-21 14:04:51

my brother has tried asking her to apologise to me but she says no what do I do now

Maybe she is waiting for an apology?

I would (if this were me) apologise and tell her directly that you love her and did not deliberately leave her out. That this was not your intention. That in your own grief, exhaustion and at a distance you perhaps didn't fully recognise the pain she was going through. She obviously thinks you have done this (even though you say you tried to include her) so, sadly, this is her truth.

If it was my daughter I would need to talk about it... explain where I came from but not be defensive.

Often, if we acknowledge we could perhaps have done things better, our sincerity will be accepted. If we say "no I didn't", this invariably will not.

Smileless2012 Wed 27-Jan-21 19:24:39

My sincere condolences for the loss of your mum hollieflowers.

As has already been said, anger is a part of the grieving process and that is often directed at those we are close too. That said for your D to be reducing you to tears at this time is unacceptable.

My advice is to leave your D to work through her own grief so that you have the space to work through your own.

25Avalon Thu 28-Jan-21 09:50:47

So sorry to hear of your loss Hollie57. We all react in different ways when someone we love dies and none of us know how we will take it, but often there is what I call the burden of guilt. It sounds as if your dd has a mix of grief and maybe guilt and is sadly taking it out on you. Some have suggested you apologise if she felt you left her out. Could I make a further suggestion leading on from this? You could have a memorial service, formal or informal, to be held when we finally come out of lockdown, and perhaps your dd would like to organise it.

Applegran Thu 28-Jan-21 09:50:56

I think NellG has given you a thoughtful and wise answer and I hope you will find it helpful. I will only add that I feel for you and the pain you are going through and I hope you will find the kind of support NellG suggested. Your daughter is suffering too and is probably not able at the moment to be calm and rational and understand what has happened from your point of view - so I hope for you both that she too finds a way ahead which helps her heal and come to understand better what has happened. You do need to find support for yourself - you are going through a terribly painful time.

Moth62 Thu 28-Jan-21 09:56:56

After my dad died, my mum and me were not estranged exactly, but I was not as supportive of her as I should have been. My dad and me had always been very close and I somehow blamed my mum. Your daughter is grieving and hitting out at you because you’re a ‘safe’ target. Just let her know you’re there for her and leave her to come round in her own good time. At the moment, she cannot hear what you have to say, but I think she will eventually.

4allweknow Thu 28-Jan-21 10:01:52

Acknowledging you are both grieving for the loss of someone so special to you both has your DD said how she had expected to be more included in the funeral arrangements? Has she been involved in making these kind of arrangements ever before. Perhaps she just doesn't appreciate how restricted funerals are just now. Put your concerns on paper, highlighting what you did and why and ask what she had anticipated would be done that she wasn't included in. Yes your DD is grieving as are you but she has to have some reason niggling away to make her so unaccepting of the funeral arrangements. You don't say how old DD is. You do imply there are other GC, how have they reacted?

Scottydog6857 Thu 28-Jan-21 10:14:24

I am almost 64, and have a 29 year old daughter who has always been difficult but after a falling out in 2016, when my husband threw her out of our house, after I asked him to speak to her about her attitude, she has been very distant with me, didn't speak to me at all for over a year, and has recently upset me again by being nasty to me! I already suffered from depression, which after what happened in 2016, became so severe because of the issues with my daughter, that I required hospital admission in September 2019! I remain traumatized by that, and it has damaged my relationship with my husband and my GP!
My husband just cannot see why I let her attitude get to me, but then he has always been the favoured parent, whereas I have never felt as if I could reach my daughter! My 26 year old son, to whom I have always been close, and who still lives at home, says that his sister isn't going to change, and I should keep her at a distance. He has been doing it for years! I know his advice is sound, but it breaks my heart not to have a good relationship with both my kids! I am an only child and I lost my own mum to cancer in 1997, when she was younger than I am now. She was my best friend and I miss her every single day!
I am presently taking my son's advice, for my own sanity, but finding it very hard!
So I think that it would be in your own interests to distance yourself from your daughter, but I can understand how hard this might be for you. You have my utmost sympathy! xx

SecondhandRose Thu 28-Jan-21 10:21:41

If it was me. I would give her a few weeks to herself and then broach the subject with her. As 'Not Spaghetti' says, I would go down that route but leave her for a while. Sending hugs.

crazygranny Thu 28-Jan-21 10:24:24

This is really horrible and I am so very sorry you are having to deal with it.
No matter what her feelings, your daughter has no right to behave like this towards a woman who has just lost her mother after years of solo coping.
Keep your distance, don't make contact and take the time to grieve that you need. If your daughter gets back in touch, tell her that you love her but spell out how exhausted you are from caring for your mum that your feelings of grief need to be addressed now. If she starts to be unpleasant just repeat that you need time and space to grieve and put the phone down.

jaylucy Thu 28-Jan-21 10:24:42

She's going through one of the stages of grieving of anger. It's not really at you, but you are sadly bearing the brunt.
Maybe she is feeling guilty that she didn't or couldn't have done more for her grandmother while she was alive, maybe she assumed that when you were planning the funeral, that every decision that you and her uncle made would be run by her, so feels sidelined, even though you did ask if her children would like to contribute by choosing a hymn or song. Maybe you should have asked her to choose or maybe a poem or reading?
As these days funerals feel incomplete without a wake. Would it be an idea to say to her that you are planning to have a celebration of your mum's life at some point in the future and were hoping that she would be in charge of that? Just be prepared for the "well you didn't ask me for the funeral, so you must be joking" response.

RosieJ18 Thu 28-Jan-21 11:01:39

I think that your daughter is possibly pushing you away now because of her own grief and anger at losing someone so loved. It always comes as a shock to loose a close family member however expected.By doing and saying these things to you now She can then distance herself from any grief she would feel if anything happened to you I think it’s a protection mechanism to prevent us from being hurt.
She loves you very much , give her time , give yourself time to grieve your mum .Also accept some of the relief you must feel at the burden being lifted from you . It’s a frightening time for everyone at the moment and you will all come together again .

Gwenisgreat1 Thu 28-Jan-21 11:08:24

Yes, anger and guilt come with bereavement. My suggestion for all it's worth, avoid speaking to her (so easy to say things you don't mean and can be hurtful), instead email or write a letter, carefully composed letting her know you don't blame her for anything but you will be there for her when she feels better?

Tea3 Thu 28-Jan-21 11:16:51

Throwing a tantrum and making her grandma’s death all about herself is a good way of absolving herself from doing anything for you. I think she is being a self centred little madam and, as with a toddler tantrum, ignore it.

aonk Thu 28-Jan-21 11:25:24

A friend of mine lost her husband just before the first lockdown so they were able to have a “normal” funeral followed by a reception. In all the shock she tried hard to involve all the family in the arrangements including her MIL. Afterwards the MIL made it very clear to everyone that she felt she hadn’t been involved and that she was most unhappy with both the funeral and the reception. Apparently she felt the service was “too religious” and the food was “cheap and nasty.” My friend who had always had a good relationship with her was so upset by this. She was wisely advised to allow time and the shock to pass. All is well now.

Abuelana Thu 28-Jan-21 11:27:18

Grief takes on many cloaks - you’re both grieving give it time.
I lost my Dad 4 months ago. Had a stepmother and 4 stepsisters to deal with regarding funeral arrangements. We’re all grieving differently.

Whatdayisit Thu 28-Jan-21 11:36:21

So sorry that you have lost your mum in these hellish times.
My mum always used to say least said soonest mended. . I feel, and i am not justifying her actions by saying this, but demanding an apology through your brother is a little heavy handed.
You don't need an apology, you may want one but it's not necessary. It's how family trench warfare starts.
Personally as her parent you need to say to her i am sorry you feel this way it has been a very difficult and painful time for us all.
Keep the door open for her to come back without begging her or laying down conditions. Hopefully time can heal you all.
At least you and your brother know you both did your best for your mother when she needed you both.

Dibbydod Thu 28-Jan-21 11:40:50

When my partner of 22 years passed away year last October, I took it very bad and hit rock bottom , then to make matters worse , my daughter had a big fall out with me few weeks after the funeral , mainly because of how I’d felt the way my partners son treated his dad which , to me , was unforgivable, but my daughter thought his son was wonderful and disliked my attitude towards him . All this couldn’t have come at a worse time as I was already suffering the most awful grief .
I did try, so many times , to say I’m sorry to my daughter, to tell her that I loved her and missed her so very much ,but she stood her ground . The year has gone by with absolutely no contact from her whatsoever, ignoring Mothers Day , my birthday and , worst of all , this past Christmas.
But , as time has gone by , I have become to feel that I don’t like my daughter anymore, don’t like her for what she has done to me , kicked me down when I was already down with grief , my own mam and dad would be mortified by her actions if they were still alive , as this behaviour isn’t really acceptable in the family I grew up in . Sounds awful I know , but her behaviour has not only affected myself but the wider family also , including her brother.
All I can say is to give your daughter the space to grieve and let her come around in her own way , let her own consciousness prick . I’ve read so many stories of estrangement on here and through friends , I find it so hard to understand how the babies we gave birth to , whom we cuddled, loved and cherished, gave them our all and our very our best, , can then hurt their mothers so badly . All I know is that I could never , ever treat my own mother in such a way as it would break my own heart in doing so .

Whatdayisit Thu 28-Jan-21 11:49:57

Ps i do agree with Tea 3 but it depends what outcome you want from this as to how you handle things.
My exmil demanded an apology from her daughter after a death and subsequently they didn't speak for over 8 years. The word sorry was never uttered and 8 years of seeing her grandchildren were lost.

Toadinthehole Thu 28-Jan-21 12:29:32

I think you just need to let time pass, and the dust to settle. Don’t push it, and hopefully any animosity will fade away. Most people, I would assume, are on short fuses at the moment....and just feeling low generally. Least said soonest mended. Let the grieving stages pass uninhibited, for both of you. Maybe you can get the support you need from your son for now. He may be feeling it too, so you could help each other. I do hope you feel better soon💐