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Anybody else feeling the absence of a child at Christmas?
Glad our younger son is coming for a few days, but feeling sad that J will not be here. Actually, the J we know now is really not someone we want to be around, but setting aside that parent/child bond after 28 years is hard to do so even if he's a rotten person, I still would want him to be here.


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Yes. I’m not sure I’ll have any of mine. S is MIA after a couple drama-filled weeks I haven’t had the energy to get into here yet. C’s phone is off and I have no way to track him down. N and family are 2000 miles away and travel isn’t in the budget this year. And E is spending her first Christmas as a married woman with her in laws. I’m a bit bereft at the moment, actually. I know how you feel - even when they are not fun to be around, it hurts to not have them here for special days.

Tired out

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etting aside that parent/child bond after 28 years is hard to do so even if he's a rotten person, I still would want him to be here.
I know what you mean, and I feel your pain. My pita is 21, but he puts such an unhappy strain on things. I wish I wanted him to be here. I was sad and relieved when he said "No"

S is MIA after a couple drama-filled weeks I haven’t had the energy to get into here yet.
Oh no. Big hugs.

know how you feel - even when they are not fun to be around, it hurts to not have them here for special days.
Yes it does.

Tired out

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I just want to wave a magic want and go back to Christmases 1965. 1995 and 1997, 1998.. Those were the days my friends....


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My older son has not talked to me in 3 years..and he texted me Merry Christmas this year...His birthday is actually tomorrow New Years Day.

He hurt me so much by not talking to me in that 3 years that I became numb to him...I no longer care....I have never seen my Grandaughter....this is my oldest son and he was addicted to drugs....I think he is doing better.

I was so close to him...I paid their rent for a whole year...he is presently driving my extra car....but I want nothing more to do with him because I lost so much sleep over him thru the years....and I was devestated when he stopped talking to me...but after the first year and 1/2 I found it a blessing because the obsession with him was removed and I began to focus on my life...

And I'm available NOW for other people and their cirisis....which is something else i have to learn to detach from.

So you are not alone.


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As of today, it's been a year since we last saw J. We flew him home last New Year's weekend in order to give him our extra car and a trunkful of groceries to drive back to Denver with. Now, a year later, he is blocked from both my phone and my husband's phone. He called last Wednesday and was just going on and on in one of his abusive tirades about 1) our refusal to co-sign a car loan for him and how utterly selfish we are, and 2) how selfish and miserable we are as people because we moved from time to time as he as growing up and made him live in sh**tty towns, etc. There was no way to have a conversation with him; he literally would interrupt and talk over me and kept circling around to the same themes (see above). When he wasn't calling me, he was sending one abusive text after another, as well as to my husband. I felt like my heart was being stomped to death. I've never experienced domestic abuse, but I had an inkling of what a domestic abuse victim feels like--beaten down, self-doubting, depressed. So I told him I was blocking him and I did.
Well, today I'm so sad. I don't know if I'll ever see him again. His birthday a week from today. I'm thinking I might unblock him long enough to call and wish him a happy birthday and then get off the phone and re-block it. Sometimes, the grief feels overwhelming, like a strong wave hitting me broadside. I just want my son back, and I can't have that because it's not up to me, and I just want this hurt to stop.

Thanks for letting me vent. My husband doesn't like to talk about too much. He too is grieving. I have an appointment with a therapist on my son's birthday next week. I'm trying to compile a list of questions to help me in navigating this loss in our lives.


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We adopted a son with attachment disorder and he left us as if we had never loved or cared for him after he married. With a lot of therapy and learning about attachment disorder I went through each step of grief.

The final straw was when I did manage to see him and his wife one last time, after my grief was over.

He was a stranger by then and I barely knew his wife, but he handed me a vile list of things I had to adhere to in order to have the honor of seeing him.

One read through and I knew it was over. This person wasnt the six year old boy who had come from Asia. The handsome little guy we loved so much and had sewn into our hearts. The one we tried hard to embrace, with so much resistance from him.

He was a man now, an angry, cold man. Thank God for the therapy I had!

I was actually staying with my daughter for a vacation and I had asked her if she wanted to come with, but he had hurt her too much and she said no.

After the meeting with this young man and his wife, I said good bye and kissed him on the cheek. We were at his church. I turned and walked away and did not look back and was very certain that this was done. I was not depressed. This surprised me but I felt at peace.

On the way out I threw his list in a trash can. It had demands on it like "You can only see us at our church or a restaurant and you will pay your own bill" and "When you call, no more than once every three days, leave a message about why you want me to call you back or else I wont return call." It went on and on.

That was not a relationship. Not one I felt was worth it.

I drove to Daughter's home in peace and didnt tell my daugjter most details but she knew him well.

The next day we went to a waterpark with this daughter plus my youngest two and had great fun.

I have been very okay with what happened since then. I have four other kids I am close too and two grands. I not going to make time for a silly demeaning relationship with silly rules.

I believe the attachment disorder diagnosis which makes it very hard for him to care about anyone. Six years in an Asian orphanage....his formative years......we simply got him too late. Love cant cure all. If it could have he would have been more than cured.

He never called me but he had never called anyone even under the best of circumstances. I did not try again.


I am not telling you to do this but its what I did. I want normal relationships with my.kids and sadly this one was unable to even be decent.

You have to decide what you can handle and therapy helped.me so much. I think its a good starting point.

Your son, for different reasons, may also be unable to have a normal relationship with you. At least for now. You need to decide how much of him is okay. Please dont let him make you sick. Do you have other kids?

Much love and light.
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SWOT, yes, I remember your story from previous posts. So, so sad and tragic about your adopted son. I work for a psychiatrist who deals with troubled kids and teens, and I have learned that it doesn't take long for the human brain to be damaged by neglect and/or abuse. Reactive Attachment Disorder develops within the first five years of life.

Our oldest son, J, was adopted when he was four months old and had been placed for adoption by his birth mom when he was five weeks old. He spent about two months in a Christian family who fostered him until we brought him home. It was the happiest day of our lives, and he was a wonderful child. Anyway, that's water under the bridge. I don't think he has Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) but his birth mom told me a year ago that she was Bipolar. I didn't have the presence of mind at the time to ask her if she had been formally diagnosed, and she died in a car accident a month after I spoke with her so I will never know that. But there's a strong chance that is what has happened to J. I always wonder just how much of his mean, disrespectful, abusive speech is his "illness" and how much is just something he chooses to do. That's something I really need help in understanding. How much responsibility does his illness get for his behavior? Still working on that one.

To answer your question, yes, we have a younger, biological son. He was just here for Christmas. Now that we have blocked J from our phone, we are wondering just who he will turn his rage and hatred against. We hope he will not turn it against his brother. We will see what happens.

By the way, I read your posts often and am helped by the thoughtful, wise counsel you offer. I may not always respond with a comment, but I read them, and I am helped by what you have experienced and the wisdom you have gained.


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Thank you, Beta. I try to help. Not every experience I have resonates with everybody. I am always humbly happy if someone is helped.

I have a form of mild bipolar (so I am told) and have been in support groups with other people who have mood disorders. Bipolar doesnt cause meanness.

Mean behavior is more often caused by either being a mean person or having a Cluster B personality disorder such as antisocial, narcicistic or borderline.

No disorder forces one to be a jerk. We canccontrol what we say. Of course with bipolar or any mood disorder, you will feel more balanced and normal if you are on good medication and take it every day.

No, pot doesnt help!

None of my young adoptees had behavior problems. Just my older ones.

I hope things improve soon and wishing you the very best 2019:)