Open Letter to My Daughter

god has plans for meDear Daughter,

I want to start out by saying that I love you with all my heart. You are my child and I will always love you no matter what. That being said, I need to point out to you that you are an ADULT now and have been legally so for the last 25 years. And as an adult YOU are responsible for providing yourself with the life you want or need. No one else, not the government, not your friends, not me, or anyone else is required to provide for you. YOU are supposed to provide for you. That is God’s will and God’s plan for your life. I know you as only a mother can, and I know that you know the difference between right and wrong. That you chose to ignore what you know is the main source of the sorrows in your life.

I obviously made mistakes when trying to raise you and for that I sincerely apologize. I was a child of 16 myself when I gave birth to you and had no knowledge of how to raise a child and provide you with guidance that I never received because I made the poor choice to leave home too soon. Somehow I failed to impart to you the reality that when you are an adult almost everything that happens is a direct result of your action or inaction in any given situation. Sure sometimes bad things happen to good people, but only rarely. When bad things are constantly happening, you need to step back and take a long hard look at what you are doing or not doing to bring such sadness and deprivation into your life.

  • My car, purse, phone and laptop got stolen; well, you left your car unlocked, running, with the keys in it. That was your inaction. The place you choose to live is the car theft capital of the country and you are well aware of that.
  • My meds got stolen; well that was your choice to let it be known that you have meds that can be abused in your home and to also leave your house unlocked rather than blame it on the fact that the mate you chose, an alleged adult, can’t seem to keep track of a house key.
  • Someone is listening to my phone; OK, you know why that is, if someone really is doing that. This is a DIRECT RESULT of something you have done that you should not have done. You are NOT a random target.
  • My feet are cold, I lost my boots; well you chose to live in a frigid climate and chose not to keep track of your boots.

I can’t even count how many sad tales I’ve heard from you over these decades since you reached adulthood. I have lain awake night after night wondering why it is that you seem bound and determined to screw yourself over in every way possible.

One thing that has become clear to me is that you do not accept responsibility for yourself. I hear endless excuses about how whatever the latest crisis is not your fault. People are always out to get you. You never get a fair break. You are betrayed yet again. And on and on it goes. You have told so many half-truths and made so many excuses for your circumstances that you start to believe that is the truth instead of doing some serious soul-searching and asking yourself “what am I doing to ruin my life?” Deep down in you somewhere you know the truth, but I don’t think you have actually faced it and taken ownership and responsibility for your life.

Grandmommie used to have a quaint way of saying it. “If you lay down with a dog, you get up with fleas.” A biblical way of putting it is: “You reap what you sow.” What are you sowing? It can’t be anything beneficial, because your life seems to be a never ending stream of tragedy, melodrama and heartbreak. At the age you are, you should be reaping at least a little bit of joy, roses and sunshine by now instead of living in the eternal darkness of a wasted life caused by bad choices.

Looking back over the years I realize now that the only time you call is when you want something from me. You usually call when it’s getting close to Christmas. You want me to give you money, buy you something you insist you “need,” listen and believe your latest sob story and go along with your misguided attitude of “oh you poor little thing, why are all this terrible things happening to you?” I can’t even recall a time when you called me simply because you wanted to know how I was doing, what is going on in my life, what troubles I may have. These seem to be non-issues to you. I feel that I am nothing to you but an ATM machine and a shoulder to cry on when you’ve made yet another extremely unwise decision.

I can’t force you to change your ways and I don’t intend to even try. What I can do is change my ways. What I have decided is that I will no longer;

  • Give you money
  • Buy things for you
  • Respond to random text messages that are impossible to understand
  • Sympathize with you when you are suffering from the consequences of you own actions
  • Believe your excuses and long involved stories of why it wasn’t your fault that something bad is happening to you yet again
  • Attempt to rescue you from another pickle you’ve gotten yourself into
  • Attempt to have a conversation with you when you refuse to be honest and give me straight answers to reasonable questions regarding your situation
  • Attempt to talk to you when you are stoned, high, drunk, wasted, baked, buzzed or whatever the latest slang for being under the influence of drugs or alcohol may be
  • Allow you to come live with me because you “just can’t make it” on your own

What I will do is continue to love you and pray for you every day. The gift I am giving you today is your life. I am handing it to you on a silver platter because it does not belong to me. I have also given you back to God. It is between you and him what you do with your life. You know what you need to do. There is no better time than now to start living an honest, moral, sane, peaceful and joyful life. I hope you do, I’m looking forward to it.

Love you forever,

Mom

9 responses

  1. I felt like I was reading about my stepson. It took awhile before the tough-love thing actually sank into him and even longer for it to sink into his mother and me. You’re right though, you can only do so much, anything else does become enabling and counterproductive.

    I hope it all turns out well in the end for you both, but in the meantime at least, much of the weight has been lifted from you. In the end…it’s her life and only she can run it.

    1. sorry to hear you’re going through this with your stepson. I hope he finds his way

  2. Thanks for finally writing about >Open Letter to My Daughter | The Serenity Game <Liked it!

  3. My heart is heavy for you after reading this. Parenting is the hardest job in the world, and even when one does that job well–as you have–the payoffs and rewards are not guaranteed. So sorry for you, but if it helps at all I think you’re doing the right thing.

    1. Thank you Miss Pink, it is a comfort to know that you think I’m doing the right thing.

  4. Xzandis Zaevan | Reply

    I was trying to enter a comment yesterday b4 my computer went bonkers, but what I was saying was pretty much the same thing mairedubhtx was saying and that is that I wish you and your daughter the best on mending fences. I know for a fact how complicated familial fallouts can be … I haven’t spoken with most of my family members in more than a decade since our family matriarch passed. Honestly I don’t hold any regret about pulling away from them b/c it was something that had been brewing for a long time and I will not bore anyone with all of that old stuff, but what I will say is that if you feel in your heart that you have done the best for your daughter then the only thing you can do is what you proclaimed in your blog, “let go and let God”.
    But I do hope you two come to some sort of peaceful resolution b/c you two don’t want to wake up one day and realized how much time has passed over something you’ll each think is a small matter.

    1. Thank you for commenting. My intention is not to break off relations with my daughter. All though she will probably be extremely angry when she receives my letter and not speak to me for what may be a long while. My intention is to not enable her anymore. If she wants to have a sober, respectful conversation, and not try to wheedle me into giving her money or helping her stay stuck in her mess, I’m all for it.

  5. I sincerely hope that your daughter straightens out. You are taking action and that’s all you can do. I hope it works.

    1. Thanks for listening, Maire. Whether she does or not I feel an enormous weight lifted from my shoulders from just giving her back into the care of her maker.

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