My son has caused me heartbreak. What do I do?

It had been 15 months since I had heard anything from my son. He had been traveling overseas and for

It had been 15 months since I had heard anything from my son. He had been traveling overseas and for reasons known only to himself, did not contact me at all during that time.

Every month I would email him and ask him to keep in touch, to give me a number I could reach him on or to call me once in awhile. He had suffered much over his young life and has always been quiet but never reserved with me or his brother.

I worried about him and just wanted to know he was okay. That’s what a mother does, right?

The phone number I had for him was no longer his and this made me worry even more. It was his birthday last year that I received my last contact with him. He had also deactivated his Facebook account. More worry.

I started to email weekly and asked him to please contact me… just let me know he was fine.

Still nothing but I knew I had to keep trying.

He is my son, grown now but still troubled. Nothing would make me give up.

I emailed him and told him I would email a few times a week till I knew he was all right.

I couldn’t stress enough how much I loved him. By chance I discovered where he was working and called. He wasn’t working that day but the woman gave me his number and I was relieved. I called every couple of days but it always went to message bank. I didn’t stop emailing.

Finally a couple of days ago I had an email. It was from my son. I was elated.

I sat down with my coffee and opened the email, anxious and excited to hear he was okay and to get all of his news.

I read and re-read his email.

My excitement turned to confusion.

A sickening feeling washed over me as the words swam in front of my eyes.

“Hi mum, don’t call me.”

He went on to berate me for calling his workplace to try to get in touch with him. He scolded me for sending so many emails and for calling his phone three times in a week. He didn’t want to talk to me. He wanted to do his own thing. When he was ready he would contact me.

How dare I call him!

The email went on and completely devastated me. It was cruel and certainly not what I expected from the son I thought I knew. It was selfish and self-centred and seemed he couldn’t care less that I had only heard from him once in 15 months.

He was not at all concerned that after him being out of the country for two years and six months before that, I would worry.

I don’t know what to do now. If I don’t keep contacting him, will he disappear forever?

I have had one heart attack and could only think then that I wouldn’t get to see my son again.

Is that what is going to happen?

Do I stop even emailing in the hope he will contact me? How do I stop worrying?

How do I stop being angry with him for being so selfish? I don’t understand his attitude. We have always been close. Will I ever see my son again?

Can you relate to this author’s tale? What advice do you have for this situation?

  1. Sue  

    That’s really sad for her. Can she contact some of his friends to find out if he’s ok? Can the dad try to contact him?

  2. Sue  

    If there’s a dad in the picture, her son might feel more comfortable confiding in him.

  3. Tris  

    I really feel for her “son” the damage that must of been done in the years before, for him to react in such away…..
    1 peice of advice i can only say, stop being a pests to him right now as harsh as tis sounds you are only driving a bigget wedge between you n your son….
    2 Dont go chasing his friends or you will lose him…
    3 send email once a month with a hello, hope you are well, im sorry an love unconditionally
    Love mum
    I say tis cause i spent 14 yrs a strange from my son …
    But after my own counciling understood heaps more of things that happened in the past….
    Long story cut short i did the above an now have such a close loving relationship with my son as if nothing had happen
    Hope n wish you all the best…

  4. Diane  

    If you love your son you must let him fly free. If he loves you he will fly back. It may take some time he seems like a very troubled soul. Just let him know that you will always be there waiting with open arms.

    • morna kenworthy  

      You must let him go. He has said he will contact you when he is ready…accept that, believe him and trust him. Live a full and productive life so you will be well well as happy…when you are together again. Gentle thoughts to you.

  5. Donna  

    Could he be in trouble??? Mysteriously going overseas- not wanting any communication! If you got along well before he left then it sounds suspicious. If he’s pushing you away, maybe someone is forcing him to do that! I hope not, prayers for you both.

  6. Anne  

    Sounds to me like he is the most selfish , self centred man i have ever heard of. How hard is it to send an email to the person who gave to life and let her know you are ok. She is not asking to take over his life She just wants to know he is ok. The mother loved and cared for him until he was an adult and seems to love him dearly. Selfish, selfish man.

  7. Dianne Evans  

    I would reply I would say I will email you once a fortnight because I love you. I would like so much if you would reply but if you do not that is your choice and I will wait and hope you will keep in touch.

  8. There is absolutely nothing you can do. I know, I’ve been there and still am to a degree, except that I refuse to let a selfish childish 37 year old son comprimise my health and happiness. I must say though, I didn’t get to this point over night. It has taken a few years of heartache and soul searching to now be able to say enough is enough.
    You deserve to be happy and content with your life, don’t let a selfish upstart take that happiness away from you.
    I wish you the very best and keep smiling you deserve the very best each and every day.

    • Josephine B  

      Laykeyta I know exactly what your saying as I’m in the same position and the same end result. I pray that our sons (yours, mine and those that are also in pain) that are out there will one day realize what a mother’s real love is.

    • Bev  

      I too have this same relationship with my 37 year old son. I have visited him at his home only to end up in tears and belittled in front of my grandson. Now, although thoughts of him enter my mind constantly, I have no contact at all with him. He has seperate three times from partners, but I still have contact, through photos on Facebook and Christmas, with my grandsons (2) through those partners which is lovely, as for my son, I just hope that his life is as he wants and I, have to be content with a good relationship with my two daughters.

      • judy  

        i too am estranged from my son and his family. i haven’t had face to face contact in over two years.. i was a loving grandmother and mother but his wife was controlling and has completely changed my once loving son.. i have grieved the loss of my grandchildren so much but there was a knock on the door a month ago and my oldest grandson whose 18th birthday was that day, called around to thank us for his card and money left in the letterbox and spent nearly an hour with us.. i was so thrilled and told him i loved him. nothing will change and i have come to accept that but i am 66 yrs of age and i dont have time to waste grieving for something i cant change so i am getting on with my life with my two beautiful daughters that do love me… sometimes you just have to let go and free yourself.. this has been a long journey for me too. look after yourself first .

  9. Jane Norris  

    Maybe, without realising it, you have always smothered him with your obsessive love. Let him breath.

  10. Marilyn E  

    It must be so hard when that happens you raise them with love and give the best years of life to your kids, of course you want to keep in touch, keep trying and let him know you love him and will always be there for him, one day it might happen to him! But you have to try and live the rest of your life happily.

  11. It is not smothering to want to know that ur son is ok when he is overseas in this troubled world. I am so sorry for what you are going through. Just send an email every few weeks and keep that door open and try to move on with your life. No parent is perfect we all do the best we can at the time. Your son has obviously had love from you all his life. Take care of yourself.

    • Dianne  

      I feel very much for you as have been there to some extent myself in the past.
      I have a wonderful, respectful, loving relationship now thru Radical Forgiveness.
      You may like to have a look at Colin Tipping’s website:
      Not just my son but all my relationships have been & continue to be healed thru this.
      It is life changing. I wish you every blessing.

      • June crossley  

        Estranged from my daughter for 15 yrs because I took in her son who was mixing with drug addiction and undesirables. Finally ,with her son now a grown decent hardworking man we got together again but now again I have been shut out of her life. I have found ways to put this out of my mind. I have done my best always if she needs me in the future I’ll be here. If I need her then I guess I’ll have to find means to look out for myself. Don’t knock your self out begging for their love. It’s not worth the effort.

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