I Don't love my Daughter!(274 Posts)
hi, my names Louise, i am 29 and i have a husband who i have been with for over 10 years. i have a 9 year old Son and 3 years ago i had twins, a boy and a girl. I have a situation that i often feel guilty about and i wonder if its normal for this to happen. Basically i love my boys to bits but i do not love my daughter, i never have done. I do care about her and i don't wish any harm towards her but its always been about my boys. When the twins were born I immediately bonded with my second Son but had trouble bonding with my daughter. I totally focused on my newborn son and resented having her around. It got so bad that after 6 months i took her to my mums and left her there. I would see her quite often either when i visited my mum or my mum came to me and i made sure that the boys got to see their sister. i would give my mum money towards her food and clothes and i would make sure everything was ok. I even enjoyed seeing her at times but was always glad to leave her behind afterwards. Earlier this year my mum sat down with me and said that as much as she loved having her live with her she felt that it was time for me to try and bond with her more and suggested that it was time to have her live with me again, i agreed to this so she came to live with me in April. Three months later she went back to live with her nan because it wasn't working at all. Perhaps we didn't give it much time but she missed her nan, her nan missed her, the boys were not used to having a girl around 24/7 and as for me? well i really tried but i just don't love her like i love the boys. So now things are back as they were. She is part of the family and always has been treated as such and i make sure that she sees plenty of her twin brother as its important for them to have a relationship, he sometimes goes and stays over at his nans and they get to spend plenty of time together. So i don't have any concerns there. But its the fact that i don't love my daughter that does sometimes bother me and i do feel bad that i rejected her the way i did and that i took her and left her with my mum. As it happens my mum loves having her and she is a fit and active woman so its not a problem. But why don't i love my daughter like i love my boys? any thoughts/advice? i'm not a bad person am i?
she need not discuss what is going on in her therapy of course but I still think MNers would support her for doing it - if that was any help
Just wanted to say I have to agree with every word custy says. I don't want to write any more because actually I'm quite angry about how you've handled it. But you need to sort this out now. She's your child, your responsibility. Enough now.
Therapy, counselling, whatever. i just need to do something about this. I know its not right and its not something i've ever been happy with, infact its caused me to be quite depressed and angry with myself many times. Often i just want it to carry on being me, my husband and my two boys and to just let it carry on as it is. other times i want to put it right. its just a very very hard situation but i know its not right, i have never thought it was right.
this is such emotive and deep stuff that the responses will understandably be divergent
my professional side can think of attachment,types of therapies and interventions
my personal side thinks for fuck sake get a grip.
I have to go out now. Louise, just be sure that you have given it 100% and made every reasonable effort to sort it.
I think you might still be able to "fix" it but you do not have a huge amount of time left in which to do this
lou expend the energy you put into relating this on MN to making some appointments and telling it to someone who can do something
LouLou I was quite disturbed by your last post. You seem very disconnected emotionally from what's going on. Please read Squilly's post again - your daughter will never understand why you have rejected her so completely. She may already be on the path of a life long feeling of worthlessness, hopelessness and depression. Please don't do this to an innocent little girl. Even if you don't understand what's going on, please get yourself some psychotherapy/family type therapy and get your daughter back in your family where she belongs. I think there are some deep psychological issues in you that need addressing - this is not to apportion blame because you can't help feeling the way you feel but you need to find out why if you are ever going to sort this for that poor little girl. Have you any idea of where your long held belief that girls are not as acceptable as boys has come from?
Lou, this is so sad and both you and your daughter deserve massive amounts of support and sympathy.
A professional therapist would be able to help you get to the bottom of this - it may well lie in your own relationship with your birth family and in turn, her relationship with her own family, going back generations. You have the opportunity to prevent it continuing through your own daughter, and it will take a while, it will be painful at times, but it is absolutely copper-bottomed 100 per cent a certainty that doing nothing will create lasting, deep and painful damage to your daughter and her siblings and very possibly their future children.
You can normally refer yourself to your local Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services though you might prefer to go through your GP. If you live in or near London you have the option of the excellent Tavistock www.tavi-port.org.
You are not a bad person. These feelings are deep and outside your control - but they do not need to be outside your control forever. There is an interesting emphasis in your post which a therapist might focus on - your concern with being a 'bad person' and the fact you 'feel bad'. You're seeking to minimise the effect it's having on your daughter - but you still know what's happening is 'bad' and turn that on yourself in a way therapy would explore. Once you start understanding your own needs and how they might not have been met you will be able to truly understand the needs of your little girl - not in a theoretical way, but in a way that compels you to respond.
You can call the Tavi on 020 8938 2241 and speak to the co-ordinator who deals with families with under-5s.
I think it's not too strong to say this is an emergency. If you don't do something soon, you will put it away for a while and the chances are you will bury it for who knows how long.
Seize the day.
Oh dear your poor poor daughter
I agree with the other you need professional help here.
As for you comments of your DD getting in the way of your boys!! this is awful!! your boys will simply have to adjust to her being there!!! she is just as important as they are!. I personally think you need to spend as much time as possible with just you and DD could you maybe get away for a week or so? just you and her, for you to make a bond with her you need to spend time with JUST her.
How very very sad.
I have to say I agree with custardo on this.
It's good that you are adressing the situation, but seriously, she is your daughter adn she will grow up into a very messed up adult with serious rejection issues as a result of this, unless you try much much harder to live with her.
She has a right to live with her parents and brothers.
Sorry if I missed it and you already said, but how does your DH feel about the situation? Does he love her? Does he mind her not living with you all?
oh my god.
seriously i am struggling what to say with out just swearing and shouting.
Firstly, you selfish idiot - I wanted to be supportive, but really? YOU HAVE GIVEN YOUR CHILD AWAY!
What is going to happen in the future? Does she call her Nan Mummy? Does she see you and her Dad as her parents?
You need help - your whole family need help..
What about her dad though?
I'm quite shocked that he has gone along with this arrangement tbh.
So basically, this little girl has been rejected by both her parents!!
Get professional help now, please.
LouLou, I agree with everyone saying you need help, for you and your little girl.
What I will say though is, I was one of a twin (brother twin) and my mum had my older brother 3 years before. She never sent me away but she made it clear she didnt want a girl and I was constantly told how she would have had two more boys over me any day. She made it clear to everyone she found me hard to bond with and this continued in to adulthood. My mum was always close to my brothers. However, now they are older and have familes of their own they have moved away and (like alot of sons) spend more time with their wives families and very rarely spend time with our mum. Birthdays, Christmas presents etc are down to me as they dont bother. I think the saying about loosing sons to wives but keeping your daughters is very true and sadly for you it could be a case of when your children are all grown up you loose them all, especially when they all truly understand what you have done to them all.
Please try now, its not imposible to turn around, it effects their whole lives forever.
People : please don't be critical and unkind to Lou.
It doesn't help.
She needs therapy. Her feelings are not deliberate. Her mother (and from the sound of it, her dh) have colluded with her rather than insisted on getting help - probably for their own reasons. Lou has been put in a very weak, controlled position.
Now she has taken the first steps outside of this trap - she has shared what she feels on a public talkboard.
Don't slap her down with shocked criticism.
To repeat: Tavistock is on 020 8938 2241
But tiktok, the op didn't come here for help. She came here to be told it's ok to pick and choose which of her children she wants. Read the last few lines of her op again. I'm sorry, it must be awful to be in a situation like this and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy but this situation is not ok and I don't get any sense that she wants to change it.
tiktok,understandably Lou post has shocked posters.it reads flat in affect and lacking an empathy
and tbh lou needs to step back,expend her energies into taking action.she wont get unconditional regard and support on MN,it isnt a therapeutic milleu. and on screen the post does read so badly.obviously there are reasons
but to anyone in throes of a psychiatric crisis i would say step back from the pc
this is a RL help situation
agree with scottishmummy, the lack of true empathy and affect regarding this situation is quite shocking.
i work in camhs and see this type of thing (attachment/bonding issues) regularly but I feel this is quite a serious case and sometimes a more directive approach is neccessary.
i hope it shocks the op into taking action today about this issue, there's a strong feeling of minimalising the issue in her posts, whereas it's a massive issue!
op i know you're not meaning to make excuses but your posts do have that flavour. there also seems to be some ambivalence about the situation.
Agree with tiktok the Tavi would be best disposed to help you, improving access to psychological therapies is mainly cbt focussed and this situation needs something far far deeper and more challenging than this (speaking as a cbt therapist).
scottishmummy - I agree. Online support will get Lou nowhere...risk is she will get so much criticism (understandable) she will be reinforced in her belief that she is 'bad' (and maybe sees herself, or her mother, in her daughter, and in all females), and does not deserve help because of being bad.
Where does that leave her, and her daughter?
eyeballs - regardless of what Lou came here for, she and her daughter need help. Yes, the situation is utterly shocking; yes, Lou does not seem to 'get' how shocking it is, at least on the surface; yes, on the surface part of her is seeking validation for her 'choice'. But if she thinks others confirm she is a 'bad' person, why would she deserve to be happy in shared love with her little girl?
From scottishmummy: "your posts read quite flat in affect and lacking in empathy."
Yes. You've nailed exactly what is so disturbing about the op. Failure to bond posts are usually typified by guilt and, for want of a better word, hand wringing.
This is lacking from this op, which means either she doesn't want the situation to change, just approval that what she is doing is right. Or, that there are deeper, much deeper, underlying problems.
minx - agree that CBT would not be appropriate. Some CAMHS have no under-5s provision at all, so I hope Lou lives near somewhere she can get the right help - even if she cannot get help from the Tavi, they will know where psychodynamic/attachment therapy can be found.
This has hit a bit of a nerve for me because I have a twin brother and an older brother, and we grew up away from our parents. My twin brother and I have been best freinds for our entire lives. He has always been a friend I could turn to no matter what I'd done and no matter what other people were saying or thinking - that's what siblings do. It makes me really sad that you've stolen all of the family bonds from your dd - she may never be as close to her brothers as she might have been. Your ds1 is certainly old enough to remember this. I'm also shocked that you don't seem to realise how much resentment this might cause from all of your children later. Obviously you must realise if dd remembers this it wont be easy for her, but you have prevented your ds2 from bonding with his twin which he might resent. Every pair of twins I've ever met are closer to each other than non-twin siblings, even when they aren't identical or the same gender. I would always have chosen to live with my brothers than my parents if it had been an option.
I don't think this makes you a bad person, if you act now and really try to make a sustainable and loving relationsip with your daughter (it will come) then in my view that shows a lot. In the mean time, (while you're getting help, or coming to terms with it, or whatever) please consider letting your ds2 live with your mum too (if it's possible). I think that could make the transition back to 'normal' family life much easier, as:
- It would mean the twins were coming back together, so any changes that made in the family dynamics wouldn't be blaimed on your dd.
- Your dd wouldn't feel so singled out, and it wouldn't be such a massive change for her.
- You would have a chance to help ds1 get ready for the changes.
- It would give your daughter a connection into her family when she does come back so she would feel more at home.
- It would also give both of them a chance at patching up what should be the most important friendship of their life.
Good luck with this.
what a selfish person, Poor child
1st point of contact GP and get referrals to CAMHS,some cmht support
maybe a family support worker to work along side lou modelling good parenting
definitley family therapy
all these services are under resourced and stretched with huge caseloads.and yes some camhs wont take under 5
IAPT i was just wondering about a kick start and address the deeper embedded attachment and maternal preferences elsewhere
tavi take PG students,and they have less of a waiting list as part of the training you need certain amount of clinical time.the deal is you work with a student who is supervised and that may be quicker way onto waiting list.might be worth a punt
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