Married Son is Pulling Away from Family

Question: Dear Luise: Married son is pulling away from parents and sister. What should we do to stay included in his life? We are not 100% in love with his new wife. Everything involves around HER wants and needs. We do not see or hear her seeing to our son/brother. He grew up with his father seeing to his children first along with his mother. We are worried when children come into the picture they will be put on the back burner. Our son is now on the back burner with his wife. S.

Answer: Dear S. There is nothing you can do. Sons grow up and make choices. When they are smitten, all bets are off. That doesn’t mean it will stay like that but anything you say or do in the line of objecting will just accelerate the distance forming between you.

He has established a new family unit. They will make up the rules as they go along. He may follow the excellent example you and your husband provided or he may put the woman he sees as “perfect” and feels extremely protective toward, in charge. It’s a situation that reflects how much he loves her and how much she loves herself. Unfortunately, that’s what they have in common.

One of the hardest things to do with grown children is to respect them when you see them making mistakes. He has chosen someone you wouldn’t have chosen for him. They may know that on some level and, to give them the benefit of the doubt, they may be choosing isolation as a solution to the tension. We all say we want our children to grow up to be independent individuals, but for most of us, (me included), we have a pretty clear picture of how that should look. That doesn’t work. Ever.

You’ve done your job. Let go. He is inexperienced and is making life decisions from that place…just like we all did. Quietly love him to pieces (from a distance)…and hope for the best. Blessing, Luise

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