Can you give me suggestions on how to improve my relationship with my adult daughter?

    She lives over 1000 miles aways so we can't visit very often.
    She is single and working. When I leave messages on phone or text messages, she never returns a call. I know she is busy, but I think it shows respect if you call home at least once a month.
    what does everyone else think???

    +2  Views: 588 Answers: 5 Posted: 13 years ago

    5 Answers

    yes this is a hard one I had to phone my Mother every week and I only lived 30 miles away and your right it si respect but saying that it wasnt respect why I was phoning her it was my duty you dont say how old she is? as you say she works but a simple tex would survice, I would tex her and say its your turn to tex me and say all I need is a tex as I worry sopose she was ill and I didnt know I think a bit of black mail at this point wont go a miss good luck melanie
    Well, I'm a guy but have a sister and mom and know that for some reason the mother/daughter relationships are complicated ones. If you are Christian, I would advise you to seek God on this, if not or either way I have a search on some books that might help you. Good luck with your daughter...

    Improve Your Mother-Daughter Relationship ...
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    Thanks for these recommendations. I have been reading Mother-Daughter Duet by Cheri Fuller and Ali Plum. I will look into some of your suggestions.
    We are on good terms, but her dad is unaware of a relationship she is in. She hasn't told him because he is from a different race and my husband would not approve. But when she did call at Easter and on Mother's Day, she's able to avoid going in that direction when talking to her dad. I think I will give her the space she needs and will pray that she can work out things in her life. We love her very much, care about her, and very interested in her everyday life. I do believe she gives us answers that she thinks we will like. And I do believe this stems from being adopted at birth. She's always grown up knowing this. I'm wondering if she may be struggling within her self with some unanswered questions. I haven't asked her if she would like to search out her birth mother. I don't like to bring up this conversation with an email or phone call. It would be much better when she comes home for a visit.
    Thanks again for the suggested books. I will be going to Borders very soon.
    Hope I'm wrong but maybe an addiction problem, or an overly possessive person in her life. Something to check out. If it were my daughter she would get an unannounced visit from the old man. She should call, my mother could always tell if I was buzzed no matter how hard I tried to hide it, hence her not calling.
    This is a hard question to answer.

    It would be good to know (if you don't mind telling) what your relationship was like when you were still living under the same roof or very close to one another.

    If you had many conflicts back then already, your daughter is evading contact because she feels she couldn't stand being confronted with all those difficulties right now. Maybe she is in a process of emotional healing she wants to protect, or maybe her anger is still to big to be overcome.

    If you were doing fine, the cause is more difficult to find.

    My general recommendation on this one: don't force your daughter into responding, and don't try to make her feel guilty for not getting in touch with you. These strategies will only draw her further away from you. Ask her openly why it is always you who is taking the initiative. Tell her you don't want to intrude and don't need to be told any details, but that you as a mother are of course interested in knowing whether she's doing fine. Also, ask her at what time of the day or on what weekdays she is willing to take your call. That gives her an opportunity to time conversations with you and she'll feel less "harrassed" by spontaneous calls and more in control.

    And something else: do not feel bad or guilty for the difficult relationship with your daughter. Probably, none of the two is to blame for it. Sometimes, souls clash and are not healthy for one another. I have a very complicated relationship with my mother and still have not reached the point where I can simply forget about all the damage caused by it and say "Yeah, let's chat about this and that, I'm not gonna be hurt anymore.". It's a long way, and not all people ever get there.

    My best wishes and blessings for you.
    ole hipster

    Very good and thoughtful answer! TU for you Papitou!

    Thank you, thank you! :D

    I'm grateful for your answer. I would say we have a good relationship but are a bit stiff with each other. I would like us to both feel more relaxed and able to be more open with each other. Not that I want any graphic details of her life.
    She is living with a fellow because she can't afford her own apt. and has very poor credit. She's very lax in paying bills on time. This totally blows my mind because her dad and I both taught her this by example. It did take her 4 years to get an Associate's Degree. She then went to several universities but never completed her bachelor's degree. She's a very dedicated worker. She probably gives more than is expected.
    Well, so much for my comments. Thanks again for your
    very good suggestions.

    Hey tchur1,

    I'm glad we crazy folks could help you a bit. :)

    If you and your daughter are "stiff" with one another, it maybe is because she came out different from the sort of person you tried to bring up. I don't know why it happens, but some people simply find that the principles that work fine for the rest of their family or even for most of the people in their society, do not work for them. The fact that your daughter has had trouble finishing her studies indicates that
    a) She may not be adapting to the system surrounding her. That's a very tough experience, and makes it hard to be happy in life.
    b) She was trying to fulfill other peoples' (her parents'?) expectations, disrespecting her own, maybe different, needs.

    Try to accept the way your daughter is, even if she is the "marsian" in the family. Don't criticize her and don't get stressed out about her bills. That's her problem, and she alone will have to deal with it. If the two of you manage to accept and maybe even contemplate with humour the differences between you, I am pretty sure your relationship will improve greatly.

    Again, blessings,

    Thanks,Papitou, for responding to my comment. You are truly insightful and have a gift. I am very grateful for your advice and opinion. It has helped me in understanding my daughter better. I do want to enjoy her, have fun, and share laughs when she comes home for a visit the next time.

    I'm glad it helped. :)
    It sure sounds like something else is going on here. Has she ever mentioned a problem or misunderstanding she has with you? If so, did you listen?

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