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My Adult Children Cut Me Out of Their Life

By Linda Ward January 02, 2022 Family

I have three wonderful moms in my immediate circle of friends who have been ghosted by their children. Dictionary.com defines ghosting as “the practice of suddenly ending all contact with a person without explanation.” The extreme pain this abandonment brings is their daily life challenge.

The Whys

Some moms have no idea what caused this breach, with no way to find out. If the mom does recognize the source and wants to apologize to the adult child, this is not an option.

Other moms can identify a heated conversation where opinions differed. This could have been about political, religious, or lifestyle choices.

Maybe unwelcome comments were made about the adult child’s parenting style or poor choices that set an unintentional estrangement in motion. Sometimes we make mistakes as parents, and as parents we admit it!

In this brief article, let’s NOT go back to the source of the abandonment issue. You’ve already done this, over and over times one million, to figure out where things went wrong. If you do find your answer, there’s no way to go back and change it, even if you could or would.

Remember, the answer may not be anything you’ve said or done. Seeking the whys will drive you crazy. It’s a form of mental abuse to put yourself through this every day. Instead, let’s talk about your self-care as a deserted parent.

How to Survive

Here are some suggestions from moms who have been there:

  • Distance yourself from the adult child. Time will help.
  • You have no control. Release the child and keep moving toward an enjoyable life without them.
  • Cry and get on with it.
  • Lean on your best friends to help you at those times that hurt more than others – birthdays, holidays, or special events for grandchildren.
  • If you have an open communication channel at all with the adult child, just listen… and listen some more.
  • In this tug of war, drop the rope.
  • Write notes and cards to the adult child or grandchildren. If you think they are not receiving them, put the notes in a box for them to read at a later time in their life. One mom keeps sending birthday gifts and Christmas gifts to her estranged daughter. She’s sure they are dumped without opening, yet she will never give up or stop. It eases her mind.

A Kind Word of Advice

Take Care of Yourself

This unsolvable problem can rob you of your health and mental well-being. You may need to seek the help of a professional counselor to learn ways of handling the ever-nagging and uncorrectable whys. Simply take care of yourself.

Look for Abandonment Support

Check into on-line support groups for abandoned parents or books written on the subject to let you know you are not alone.

Find Your Source of Joy and Courage

Where do you get courage? Is it from your tribe of friends? From your religious beliefs? From self-help groups or books? You can lighten this heavy load and experience everyday happiness even though you will never forget your child or stop loving them.

Take Control of Your Thoughts

When you catch yourself for the millionth and one time asking “Why…?” just stop. Stop yourself and say out loud, “Not today, I’m going to be kind to me today.” You have the choice to have everyday happiness in your life.

As you know, life is short. Enjoy the adult kids that are still in your life, or your friends, or your pets, or your garden. Find what lightens your mood even a little, and do more of it.

Not sure how to be more positive? We give you some great tips in How To Fight Negative Thoughts By Changing Your Mindset.

Forgive Yourself

Maybe you were the reason the adult child stopped communicating. In hindsight, you see it, but there’s no way to say sorry. So, forgive yourself.

None of us know how to parent. We just take a very good stab at it and do our best. Sometimes we have said or done things that can’t be corrected now. If you need help with forgiving yourself, professionals in your church or mental health professionals will help.

Figure Out How to Live in the Moment

When something good happens, sit in that and enjoy it to the fullest. You are worthy of this. Your past mistakes or your child’s rejection don’t make it not so! Next time you enjoy your morning coffee, or a piece of fine chocolate, or the sunshine streaming in your window, take note and let yourself be there for it!

This brings attention to the things that we love and helps us experience the good in each day.

Are you an abandoned mom? If so, I wish you courage daily! How have you learned to cope? What gets you through special days or events? Please join the conversation in how you have moved forward in your life.

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My daughter and son suddenly stopped communicating with me and I found that my daughter had been married on Facebook. The three of us had been very close and although it’s been 11 years since we spoke the pain is indescribable. I’m leaving the State and starting over


This is something I have also been contemplating.
I sent an email to my youngest during the holiday. She did get back with a surprising response. Then dropped contact again.

Linda Ward

I’m so sorry for the intense pain you are living through. Would leaving the state and starting over help you ease the pain? If so, it’s definitely worth planning and considering all the details involved into making this hard decision. Have you considered joining a support group for those who are in the same situation as you? Have you sought professional help on how to live with this pain that just doesn’t go away? Not all resources will fit you or even give you peace, so please check these out to see if they help you. You are not alone.


In the google search below are many imbedded references to follow up on if they interest you.



Happy New Year Linda. You’re truly amazing for not judging us and recognizing one-size- does not fit all.

Linda Ward

Dear Marium,
Thank you for the nice comment. I feel the pain that women go through with this heart breaking situation. You have added much to the conversations, and have shared from your heart your own life. Thanks for participating and encouraging others Marium!


Thank you for this , I’m seeking how to not be so needy for the love of my adult children.


Is wanting a relationship with the people we invested most of our lives in, “needy”?

Linda Ward

I’m wondering Joyce, if the need or intense desire for our adult children will ever ease. Generally speaking, I think it comes with being their mom. We didn’t realize this or were even told this when we got pregnant, but here it is for a lifetime! When the intense desire interferes with our want to live, or destroys every other relationship in our lives, or we are reduced to helplessness, that’s when needy has turned to destructive. It never hurts to get professional help for ways to live with this hole in our hearts. We have this life to live, and finding everyday happiness with the hole that lives there is something we can do.
As we proceed in the year 2023, I wish you only the best.


Thank you. I was abandoned by my children . The pain is incredible. Mothers everywhere seem to ge hurting. I’m healing through Yoga and meditation. Finding my friends and counselling. All the over thinking I’ve done . Everyday is a challenge but I just hope for Peace in all families and homes and for healing. Forgiveness of self and others.

Linda Ward

Julianne, you are brave and have done all you could think of to do. I hope for the same, peace in our hearts, and forgiveness even if the estrangement continues.


Yes I’ve been abandoned.


It’s been 8 years my only child ghosted me. It breaks my heart every day. She was my life, it’s so difficult daily.


I also lived for my children. From a religious perspective, perhaps it was meant that we begin to live more with god? I just know the hurt is gut wrenching.
The past decade has taught me acceptance. I’m sorry for your loss.

The Author

Linda Ward is a Writer and Life Coach living in Minnesota. She specializes in helping mature women find everyday happiness and a satisfying life. She zeroes in on life after divorce, retirement transitions, and finding courage no matter what the circumstances. Her inspiring new eBook is called, Crazy Simple Steps to Feeling Happier. Linda’s Professional background is Social Work and Counseling.

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