GRAND Magazine - Summer 2022 - 14

Invisible grandparents
Why should you stop trying with your
estranged adult child?
It's hard to stop trying with your adult child. But sometimes it's best for everyone.
BY JOSHUA COLEMAN
O
ne of the most common questions I receive from parents in my practice
is whether they should keep trying to reach out or just give up.
In general, I think that parents should try to reach out to an adult
child for a significant period of time with letters of amends, empathy, and
attempting to address their complaints before they stop trying. However,
sometimes giving up is best for everyone. But when?
Here are some good reasons when you should stop:
● You are being threatened with restraining orders.
● Your adult child says that they need time apart but will be back in
contact.
● Whenever you do reach out, they're consistently hostile and
threatening.
● All your letters or gifts to them or to your grandchildren are sent back
" return to sender. "
While those conditions may seem obvious, many parents feel like they're
being neglectful or abandoning their children if they stop reaching out. This
may be especially challenging for mothers who are often governed by the
following convictions:
● Put yourself last, especially where your children are concerned, including
grown children.
● Give till it hurts.
● Worrying about your child is part of being a good mother.
14 GRAND Summer 2022
Continued on next page
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GRAND Magazine - Summer 2022

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GRAND Magazine - Summer 2022 - Cover1
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GRAND Magazine - Summer 2022 - 3
GRAND Magazine - Summer 2022 - 3A
GRAND Magazine - Summer 2022 - contents
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