Articles Feed

13 Things No Estranged Child Needs To Hear On Father’s Day – Mommyish

On Mommyish.com (click the link below the quote to bring up the page and read the rest):
Even though I really love my father, I’m beginning to hate Father’s Day. The only silver lining is that I now I have a husband and kids, and I see the potential for Father’s Day to be a loving family celebration.

via www.mommyish.com


Mark Sichel: Forgiveness - 10 Steps To Letting Go Of Resentment

To read the rest of Mark Sichel's post on resentement on his blog, click the tiny link below the paragraph:

Poisoned Mind, Poisoned Body
Take a look again at that quote: "Living with resentment is like taking poison and expecting the other guy to get sick." This makes vivid one of the most crippling aspects of resentment—one you may be experiencing right now. If you're thinking about ways to get even and prove to another person that you're right and they're wrong, you need to remember that the person who is the focus of your animosity may be feeling just fine, enjoying life, and perhaps not at all troubled by any of the interactions that are renting space in your brain. Ultimately, resentment hurts you far more than the person toward whom you bear a grudge.

via www.marksichel.com


HiddenVoices. FinalReport

Hidden Voices: A study of family estrangement:

"This research was conducted by Dr Lucy Blake from the Centre for Family Research at the University of Cambridge in collaboration with Stand Alone Charity and its beneficiaries. An online survey was created with the aim of examining the experiences and psychological consequences of estrangement from a family member."

via www.standalone.org.uk

Click the link above to go to the website to read the full report.


Can you opt out of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day?

by Rachel Grumman Bender, May 5, 2021

Whether you’re estranged from a parent or child, have lost a child or parent, or are coping with infertility, holidays such as Mother’s Day and Father’s Day can bring up a range of complicated emotions. Not everyone wants reminders of those holidays constantly showing up in their inbox either. So several brands have taken the initiative by offering customers the option of opting out of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day emails.

via www.yahoo.com


Father's Day Archives - Parents of Estranged Adult Children: Help and Healing

by Sheri McGregor, June 17, 2016

As Father’s Day rolls around again, many of you fathers of estranged adult children are holding hurt inside. For fathers of estranged adult children, Father’s Day can be a time of embarrassment and pain—yet those feelings aren’t necessarily discussed, or acknowledged. Many fathers keep themselves busy and don’t share their pain. Some ask, “What’s the use of talking about something you can’t fix?” Others, as I’ve learned in my research, want to stay strong for their partner.

via www.rejectedparents.net


How to Make it Through Father's Day If It's Difficult For You

by Elizabeth Yuko, June 18, 2020

And though people (rightfully) think about Father’s Day being difficult for children and adult children of deceased, estranged or absentee dads, Aisha R. Shabazz, a licensed clinical social worker, therapist and clinical supervisor, says that we should consider the other side, too. Specifically, “the shame and sadness that could potentially come along with ‘everyone’ else receiving gifts, lunches, dinners and acknowledgements, while others are getting nothing because their child is deceased or estranged from them,” she tells Lifehacker. “You receive the title of ‘father’ because you have children and yet, if your children are not present, you feel as though you cease to exist. It’s very isolating.”

via lifehacker.com


Lonely Hearts: Estranged Fathers on Father’s Day - Sociological Images

I work with one of the most heartbroken groups of people in the world: fathers whose adult children want nothing to do with them. While every day has its challenges, Father’s Day—with its parade of families and feel-good ads—makes it especially difficult for these Dads to avoid the feelings of shame, guilt and regret always lurking just beyond the reach of that well-practiced compartmentalization. Like birthdays, and other holidays, Father’s Day creates the wish, hope, or prayer that maybe today, please today, let me hear something, anything from my kid

via thesocietypages.org


Is It Still Father’s Day If Your Kids Won’t Speak…

  

Thomas Markle, father of the Royal Wedding bride, is not the only dad who wasn’t at his child’s wedding, and not the saddest one. At least he was invited. Each year, thousands of fathers won’t attend their child’s wedding—and not because they lack the desire, but because their grown children don’t want anything to do with them.

via greatergood.berkeley.edu


Father’s Day When You’re Estranged From Your Dad | Jennifer Margulis

Author of "Daughter of the Drunk at the Bar" writes about Father's Day (Note: click on the tiny link below the quote to go to the page to read her whole article):

My father isn’t dead but our relationship seems to be. Thanks, Facebook. The last time I heard from him, he told me to go forward as if he were dead. A reverse “You’re dead to me.” That’s where we left it.

via www.jennifermargulis.net


Estranged Parents Blog. I Am One of the Estranged Parents. - annebulger.com

In my story, I had to learn that my children’s alienation from me could never be commensurate with any mistake I ever made with them. I had to learn about the retrospective guilt that every parent can feel when evaluating our history of parenting our children. I had to learn that who I am is not defined by my children’s alienation.

It has been nine years. I don’t know where my children live. I no longer try to call or send a text or write an email to which I never get a reply. The absolute silence that has existed, after my divorce from a marriage of 25 years, has been deafening.

via annebulger.com


The truth about family estrangement - BBC Future

But it is common. Research by Stand Alone, a UK charity that supports people who are estranged from relatives, suggests that estrangement affects at least one in five British families. One US study of more than 2,000 mother-child pairs found that 10% of mothers were currently estranged from at least one adult child. And one US study found that more than 40% of participants had experienced family estrangement at some point – suggesting that in certain groups, such as US college students, estrangement may be almost as common as divorce.

via www.bbc.com


Family Estrangement: Why Families Cut Ties and How to Mend Them - Scientific American

Family Estrangement: Why Families Cut Ties and How to Mend Them

From the article: "There hasn't been much research about family estrangement, in part because it’s a difficult thing to study—many people don’t want to talk about their parents or children cutting them off. But in recent years, researchers have been paying more attention, especially to estrangements between parents and adult children. Here are some things they've learned: . . . "

via www.scientificamerican.com


Article: "Brittle, Broken, Bent: Coping With Family Estrangement."

Annie Wright: “I want to talk about family estrangement.

Specifically, why and how family estrangements happen, how surprisingly common estrangements are (but how we don’t necessarily hear about this!), how to cope with estrangement in your own family, and the rarely-discussed aspect of being estranged from your family that we *need* to acknowledge.

via www.anniewright.com


Family Estrangement - Coping With Being Estranged | Goop

This is a boundary question: What people express and share with other people is a boundary. I feel like every day of work I’m helping people fight against some societal norm that has them really fighting against their own inner core and their own beliefs. When it comes to estrangement in my practice, clients tell me sometimes the shame is worse than the loss of the person.

via goop.com


The Atlantic: Joshua Coleman article on family estrangements

Quoting Coleman:

It is sometimes tempting to see family members as one more burden in an already demanding life. It can be hard to see their awkward attempts to care for us, the confounding nature of their struggles, and the history they carry stumbling into the present. It can be difficult to apologize to those we’ve hurt and hard to forgive those who have hurt us. But sometimes the benefits outweigh the costs. Tara Westover wrote in her memoir, Educated, “I know only this: that when my mother told me she had not been the mother to me that she wished she’d been, she became that mother for the first time.”

We are all flawed. We should have that at the forefront of our minds when deciding who to keep in or out of our lives—and how to respond to those who no longer want us in theirs."

via www.theatlantic.com


How to cope with estrangement | Gransnet

If you've lost contact with family, it can feel incredibly isolating - but estrangement is more common than you might think. Research by Gransnet revealed that one in seven grandparents are estranged from their grandchildren, with many more also estranged from their adult children. If you are affected, you may be wondering how to cope and where to turn for help, so we've compiled advice from gransnetters on how they dealt with the loss and asked the experts at Relate to answer your questions on estrangement. 

via www.gransnet.com


Joshua Coleman: Estranged: When . . . cutting off our parents comes to seem like a valid choice.

I found a recent article by Joshua Coleman that summarizes many of the causes of family estrangements, recent research on the subject, and reasons for the difficulty in finding resolution. I have read Coleman's writings before. I don't recall reading some of the points he raises in this article in his past writings. But then I don't follow all that is going on with him regularly. I think this is an excellent article well worth reading. I recommend it.

"Estranged: When feeling good about ourselves means more than filial duty, cutting off our parents comes to seem like a valid choice."


"Done with the Crying" Author Sheri McGregor Estrangements Article

October 27, 2017 article: "Estrangement Doesn't Just Happen to "Bad" Moms — It Happened to Me Too" on Goodhousekeeping.com by Sheri McGregor, author of Done with the Crying.

Sheri has a website on the subject of family estrangement: RejectedParents.net and a Facebook Page on estrangement.

The description of her Facebook Page, "Help and Healing for Parents of Estranged Adult Children":

"Support and information resource. Parents of estranged adult children may feel isolated and embarrassed, yet there are many of us. Let's help each other."


Old Articles on Estrangement in a New Place: "Articles"

Articles

This collection of articles was originally included on a page of Estrangements.com which is being updated. As I add articles to this blog rather than to the Estrangements website, it makes sense to me to create a new Category here and call it "Articles" so that all articles will appear in the same place. As time goes on, links to articles that I post here may need updating or may disappear. But at least they will be organized in one place , "Articles", accessible from the word cloud in the side bar. The articles below are ones that I found years ago. I have checked other older posts on the blog to find more posts to tag for this category but did not tag posts made before 2008 as there would be too many dead links. The older the posts, the more dead links.

  1. Cults, Estrangements, and Gaming. Jan. 8, 2002. An article, Cults by Bryan Jonker, and below the article are some links about cults. There is some interesting discussion on cults and how they work. I am not clear on how this relates to gaming (and realize that gaming is not the interest of most who are interested in these links) but thought the discussion sounded good enough to include the link here.
  2. Truth and Reconciliation by Julia Gracen. May 22, 2002. Article about Laura Davis's book, I Thought We'd Never Speak Again which is referenced on the Books page.
  3. Mark Sichel's Psybersquares site. Articles on family estrangements
  4. Before the Sun goes Down, A Christian Biblical perspective: "Estrangements between friends should not be permitted to continue over night. It is a scriptural counsel that we should not let the sun go down upon our wrath."
  5. I want vengeance on my narcissistic mother: She didn't pull the trigger, but I blame her for my brother's suicide. On Salon.com. A question posted on an advice column, October 6, 2005, by Cary Tennis on Salon.com. You may need to watch a brief advertisement to read the article unless you are registered already on Salon.com.
  6. The Power of Forgiveness by Naomi Drew M.A.
  7. Forgiveness: The Mandela Principle by Rev. Victor H. Carpenter.
  8. Learning to Forgive For Good. The website of Fred Luskin.
  9. Letting Go of Our Adult Children by Arlene F. Harder, M.A., M.F.T.
  10. It’s Never Too Late To Have A Good Relationship With Your Grown Children (Your Parents or Your Ex-Spouse, Too) by Suzanne E. Harrill
  11. A Gift for My Daughter by Harry Browne
  12. Borderline Rage, an article by Anthony Walker, M.D.
  13. Grandparents' Rights Article An article on guidelines for grandparents who want visitation rights.

University of Cambridge Study on Family Estrangement in Adulthood

Hidden Voices, University of Cambridge Study on Family Estrangement in Adulthood

by Lucy Blake in collaboration with Becca Bland, Chief Executive of Stand Alone and Professor Susan Golombok, Director of the Center for Family Research at the University of Cambridge.


Huffington Post Articles on Estrangement

After writing the previous post I went back and read Katie Naum's post on Mother's Day Cards again. Noticing the subject tags listed with the post, I clicked one of them, the "Estrangement" one. That brought up a list of posts on the subject, including two written in 2014 by Katie Naum that gave some background to her estrangement from her mother. Which explains a lot about her post on Mother's Day Cards.

I understand more now. In fact, under the circumstances that she describes, perhaps she was too kind. I don't know. But I still would want to suggest thinking of her Card suggestions as if they were written by a mother rather than a daughter. Because I look for opportunities to think of situations in different ways. That was what I tried to do previously in talking about the baggage that we all carry and how wrong we can be sometimes.

Here are the links to Katie Naum's posts written in 2014 about her decision to estrange her mother:

Motherless by Choice by Katie Naum, writer, blogger, memoirist. June 2, 2014 (plus a video below the text of the article)

Why Did This Happen? Estranging Myself From My Mother by Katie Naum, writer, blogger, memoirist. June 30, 2014 on Huffington Post.

The following link is a search link that brings up posts on Huffington Post, including those linked above, on the subject of Estrangement:
Search of Huffington Post for posts on the subject of Estrangement

 


May 9, 2015 Keyword search: “Mother’s Day” & “Estrangement”

The following four links are the result of an internet search using keywords: "Mother's Day" and "Estrangement". The links are to articles recently posted and to articles that didn't have those annoying popups that appear all too often these days.


Note: To get a different perspective on Katie Naum's “Cards”, try the following changes and then read them again while imagining that they were written by a mother. I have numbered Naum’s “Cards” from 1 to 11.
In #1 change the wording to:
“Thank You For Living In My Womb and Being Born. (inside) That Part Went Pretty Well From My Perspective.”
Read #s 2 through 9 unchanged but as if written by a mother.
In #10 substitute the word “Mother” in the place of “Daughter”.
In #11 substitute the word “Daughter” in the place of “Mother”.

My request to look at the “Cards” as though written by a mother instead of a daughter is to bring a different perspective to what was written. I am not making a judgement. I am asking the question: If a mother had written those “Cards”, what would that say about the Mother? If the answer is different from what it says to you about the daughter who wrote them, why would that be so?

 


Slate staff writer Katy Waldman's article on Narcissism: Link

Are you a Narcissist? by Slate staff writer Katy Waldman, August 2014

If you’re new to being estranged and to online discussions of the condition, you might not have experienced the word Narcissistic (with a capital N in the context of Narcissistic Personality Disorder) occurring frequently in discussions of family estrangement. If you are a longtime survivor of family estrangements, it would be hard to imagine that you have not encountered those two conditions, Narcissism and Estrangement, being mentioned as related to each other. Parents are labeled as having (or being) NPD. Kids are labeled as having (or being) NPD. It seems some days that just about anyone who gets up in the morning and thinks or says anything positive or negative about themselves must have NPD according to someone who has estranged them or is estranged by them.

Parents and adult kids in online discussion groups report being accused of pathological narcissism. Parents and adult kids regularly diagnose their respective adult kids and parents as having NPD. There are groups set up just to discuss the narcissism of parents. Oddly, since it seems that the condition of pathological narcissism would not be restricted only to those who see themselves as offspring but could be suffered by anyone, parent or adult child, there are no groups set up by and for parents specifically to discuss their experience of having offspring who are pathologically narcissistic. The reasons for that are open to speculation.

Anyway, what brings me to my blog this morning is an article that I read online about NPD by Slate staff writer Katy Waldman that I thought was worth adding a link here. She mentions a number of points that have occurred to me over the years of reading about the personality disorder of NPD and she includes links to other references on the subject too. Considering this subject is one that comes up so very frequently in relation to the condition of family estrangement, I thought it was a very appropriate and worthwhile link to share here.

Are you a Narcissist? by Slate staff writer Katy Waldman, August 2014


Mother's Day 2012: Eleven Selected Links

  1. March 9, 2012 Estranged from my mum on Mother's Day
  2. May 11, 2012 Kelly Pickler, article, song & video: "Mother's Day" Is Gift of Closure
  3. My Mother
  4. Mother's Day: To Estranged Mother Greeting Card
  5. Father's Day Cards to Estranged Father Greeting Card
    Interestingly, there are several choices of cards for estranged fathers but only one for estranged mothers.
  6. May 11, 2012 by Theresa Froehlich, Transition Coach Mothers Who Can't Celebrate Mother's Day
  7. Nov. 20, 2010 Estranged Adult Children
  8. May 8, 2011 Mother's Day's Dirty Little Secret: Estrangement
  9. May 12, 2012 Mother's Day Guest Columnist Deborah Kennedy: What I never got to tell my mother
  10. April 28, 2012 Broken Bonds Healing Hearts: Advice on Surviving Mother's Day
  11. May 10, 2012 The Last Mother's Day by Timothy Egan

Happy Mother's Day!

(Or as one dear friend calls it: Stupid F'ing Mother's Day! -- SFMD! for short)

Ginny