The topic we’re exploring today has been requested many times over the last year. I asked my friend, Sarah, if she would be willing to share her experience and wisdom with us as she has an adult child who is estranged and put up some big boundaries.
Sarah is also a licensed counselor and understands this issue from both a professional and a personal perspective. She has asked that we do this interview anonymously but we’re so grateful that Sarah has graciously agreed to share her wisdom and knowledge with us on this sensitive topic.
In this conversation, you’ll hear:
- The reasons estrangement happen
- What our child needs from us
- The importance of doing your own healing work
- And so much more…
If you have adult children, even if they aren’t estranged, you need to hear this episode!
Resources mentioned in this episode:
- [BOOK] When Parents Hurt: Compassionate Strategies When You and Your Grown Child Don’t Get Along
- [BOOK] Rules of Estrangement: Why Adult Children Cut Ties and How to Heal the Conflict
- Episode 170: Intent vs. Impact
- [BOOK] Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No To Take Control of Your Life
- [BOOK] Rejection Free: How to Choose Yourself First and Take Charge of Your Life by Confidently Asking For What You Want
[BOOK] Unoffendable: How Just One Change Can Make All of Life Better
- As a thank you for listening, get your 3 free eBooks.
My Key Takeaways:
1) Do the inner work. Our children may never validate our experience or apologize for the estrangement. And quite frankly, they shouldn’t have to. The pain you feel is valid, but your child is not the one who should be responsible for that work. It is important to seek out another person to help you work through your own experiences, shame, guilt, and more. Your child will never be in a relationship of equal power with you and our lifelong job as their parent is to protect and care for them.
2) Realize that our kids are on their own healing journey. As we heard in this conversation, Sarah was self-aware that she had been a very reactive and angry mom. Even though she had grown and changed from that, her child still needed to go on their own process of grief and healing. Regardless of the inner work you have done, your child may still be processing the way they experienced their childhood or specific situations.
3) Trust God with the outcome. We may be feeling that there is no hope for the relationship with our estranged adult child. We may even be fighting feelings that we are not enough or don’t know who we are outside of our role as a parent. The reality is that we can be okay in Christ regardless of how the situation turns out. It’s important to ask ourselves, “How can I be healthy and stable even if this relationship is never healed?” (Hint: Listen to last week’s episode #179 for insight into that!)
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