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Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › Preteens and Teens › 20 year old ds is separating from me and I just need a little empathy because I'm lonely
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20 year old ds is separating from me and I just need a little empathy because I'm lonely

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi, All -

My sweet eldest ds came home from his freshman year away at college, during which we did some skype-ing and I felt close to him while he was away.  


Now we are planning a cross-country road trip (me and my two ds) and he's only going reluctantly, because he does love the family we're visiting, but says he can't afford a vacation and if he could he would not take one with me.  Which is true.  So he is hoping that instead of coming back leisurely, touring, we drive straight home for 26 hours (don't worry, that won't happen exactly).  The point is, I still love being around him and luckily his younger bro still enjoys my company, and I know that this is really fine and even healthy for older ds (if nothing else, it is who he is right now and there's nothing I can do about it).  But I miss him, and I miss the time of being a real family together and I'm sad.


Today I asked how his day was at work and he said great, but he didn't want to talk and didn't want to eat supper with us, just needed some down time alone and would see me tomorrow.


Thanks for listening.


post #2 of 10

It's a bittersweet moment when you realize that your kid is doing exactly what you raised him to do - spread his wings and fly. I understand. 


Now you get to take the next step of your journey as a parent - helping him redefine your relationship to one of adults, rather than parent/child. 


Hang in there. 

post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks, mtiger!  Any thoughts about what you might have wanted to know when you went through this (assuming you have gone through this?)

post #4 of 10

I dunno... I really just took it in stride and let them take the lead (I have 21 & 19 yos). Maybe because I expected it? *I* was never given the opportunity to help define our new relationship when I was that age, so I wanted them to have that freedom. SO far? It's worked out well. 

post #5 of 10
when i saw this post, i had to reply..never thought i would find myself back on mothering boards..i relied so much on this magazine as a young mom..took all the advice..i breastfed all 3 kids until 2 years old, slept in the family bed, and homeschooled them until college..now, i look around and see one chile with one more year left of homeschooling and my other two are adults..one graduated college last year, the other in one year..needless to say, i am feeling down as i realize how quickly the years slipped by..they all do live at home, for now, but i can feel my attachment parenting coming to an end..no one prepared me for this, greensad.gif
post #6 of 10

My eldest is 23, and she left home at 17, in the last year of high school. Our relationship has evolved gradually during that time. She wasn't a particularly easy teen to parent, and we had our challenges. However, as she has matured our relationship has evolved into a much more mature and even one. By even, I mean that of two adults, rather than parent and child. She is still very much my child and I am her mother, and she does sometimes need that kind of relationship, but she is also there for me if I need her. 

post #7 of 10
He could be more focused on his independence as he is entering adulthood. My DH didn't see his mom very often at all between 18-23, and now at 27 they see each other all the time.
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

I didn't see these last replies - I was away most of the summer.  I sure appreciate all of your insights and experiences.  Thank you.

post #9 of 10

My dear daughter is still a toddler and I can't bear a day not seeing her. I'm so scared that one day she would leave me and live by her own. I can't imagine what you are going through, Dacianna. I guess, as mothers, we have to accept that our children do not stay young forever. Time will really come when they need to have their independent lives, and all we can is support them :).

post #10 of 10

I do not have teens of my own and this definitely seems difficult. If it helps at all, his last comment seems to be an expression of how strong your relationship really is. He is showing how secure he feels about his relationship with you, that he can express his own needs (he needs space right now), and that he knows how to express himself without stepping on your feelings (didn't say anything like "Quit bugging me, Mom"). He feels secure that you will still be there for him and love him just as much later if he takes time to be by himself now. And that's what you want, right? If my mom had shown interest in my life when I was 19, no way would I have responded the way your son did--I would have talked, even if I didn't feel like it, because I would have been afraid she'd never ask again otherwise, since most of the time she didn't seem to really give a hoot what I was doing unless it annoyed her in some way. 

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Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › Preteens and Teens › 20 year old ds is separating from me and I just need a little empathy because I'm lonely