My ex developed Codependence with my oldest daughter about 5 years ago. She stopped being a parent and became the child’s best friend. I was not allowed to discipline my oldest daughter even when she committed statutory rape, multiple incidents of sex in the house, and stole my ex’s brand new Mercedes. After the car theft, I told my daughter that I was taking her phone and HER brand new car for one week. My ex and daughter storm out of the house. Two hours later, they come back and me ex tells me “I will no longer live with a man that will discipline my children like this. I want a divorce.” I swear to God, you can’t make this up. My daughter finishes her downward by getting multiple visible tattoos and bombing out of college, leaving me with a $20,00 college bill. She finished it off with sending a bunch of pictures of her and her boyfriend having sex in my house when she broke in and had a party while she knew I was out of town.
Well, my oldest daughter and her new best friend (ex) get in the ear of my two youngest daughters over the past four years and tell them what a monster I am. They are now convinced and all four have cut off communication with me.
I have tried and tried and tried and tried to reach, at least, the younger two. The middle is very impressionable and believes every lie told by my ex and my oldest daughter. The youngest is bright and sorta gets the reality of the situation. But last weekend, when I simply asked my middle why she is still mad at me, she blew up, regurgitated awful lies from her mother’s mouth, and said she is never coming back. She then convinced the youngest to do the same. Now, with the middle turning 18 and the youngest turning 16 so they don’t have to come anyway. So last weekend was pretty much the last I will see of my children forever.
I have to realize that there is no way I am ever going to reach my children, especially if they have two scorned women in their ear 24/7. The notes and letters and trying an intermediary, I’ve done all that. I have lost and she has won.
How much Parental Alienation do I have to endure before it is ok to simply walk away? I know I did my best. There is not one thing more I can say or do to stop this. It is over. I’ve not been given a choice. I am walking away. Or rather, all has been taken from me, and there is nothing left to do but walk away. Is this wrong? I honestly feel a little relief that I will not to continue a quest that is futile. Is that bad? I feel relief that it is over. I feel relief that I don’t have keep a smile on my face and drop them off Sunday and cry the whole way home.
My therapist said it is normal to feel hurt. These people, family or not, have crushed you and continue to abuse you. It is normal to be upset. I just don’t know what to do or say anymore.
I am not a horrible person. But the first reaction anyone thinks of when a father has no contact with his kids is that he is a dirtbag and must have cheated and done something horrible. I didn’t. But this is a lovely parting gift from my ex. I have thought more about moving far away and just starting over completely fresh and new. But I am 52 years old and that is not easy to do at my age. And I have no idea where I want move to. Will these feelings subside?
it sounds very terrible. whens kids that age start rebelling and do whatever they want. i don't think its a good idea for you to move away and disappear. atleast try and maintain phone contact or keep channels open. who knows, your relationship with your kids might improve over time. if their mother mistreats them, they may start looking for you.
I just have to accept that this is a battle I will never win. It will take years to even try to come close to any kind of relationship with them. I just don’t have it in me anymore. She won and I lost everything. I saw my ex wife in public last week trying desperately to hook up with some guy and that is just too much for me to be around anymore. I love my girls, and always will, but I also think that I am doing more harm that good until they move away from their mother and are on their own for a few years. That gives me time to heal, and I desperately need to do that.
I know that our society frowns upon this, but for my sake, I need to close the last chapter of first part of my life and move on. I cant keep hoping for something that is just not going to happen. I cant continue to live my life in thank funk. I lost. I have to accept that, just like any other tragedy in life. Only thing led to do at this point to is to pick up the pieces (again) and move on.
It's sounds like you're in an unenviable position, and it is clearly taking a toll on you. I think it's completely understandable that you want time to recover and heal. Your daughters are all young women now (or almost, in the case of your youngest).
I agree with Bill that you can show you are leaving the door open to them (and therefore not 'abandoning them', which I think could be a likely accusation they might throw against you years from now - regardless of the facts), without chasing after them. They know where you are, and know that the door is open for them and they can come to you when they're ready (though you should definitely change the locks to prevent a repeat of the episode you mentioned).
I've witnessed at least a couple of instances of parents being their kids' 'best friend', and in the long run it has backfired spectacularly - kids can make as many friends as they are able to, but they ultimately need to learn about boundaries, responsibilities, respect for others, and to some degree role modelling in preparation for adulthood, which is generally a large chunk of what responsible and caring parents provide.
I know it sounds tough, but particularly in the case of the youngest who seems the most understanding, and probably most in need of a stable parent, walking away entirely will leave them completely under the influence of their mother, and confirm her narrative that you don't care about them.
Live your life, hang out with your friends and leave your daughters the opportunity to come to you, rather than chasing after them and facing hurtful rejection.
Just my humble opinion.
I wish you luck in whatever you decide is best for you and your kids.