I dont love my daughter. I know its wrong.(28 Posts)
Im 43 years old and a mom of 6. I dont love my second child. She is 26 years old. I had her when i was 16. I had my first daughter at 15. When i had my second child i didnt bond with her like a mom should. To this day i still regret having her. Im close to my other children just not her. When i say i love her to her im lying to her. Ive tried for many years to bond with her and i cant. Its making me more depressed because a mom should love their children no matter what.. I know its wrong and im a bad parent because of it. If anyone can give advice id appreciate it. Please dont send hate mail. Im trying to deal with this issue.
AJim that's truly heart breaking, I'm so sorry, you had pnd, and would've been fine in the right circumstances.
You never know what the future holds, have you gone on to find some happiness even so?
I've just read your post and can completely identify with what you say, albeit my particular circumstances are a little different. I had a daughter (she is now 25), and I could not bond with her at all after birth. I had a particularly long labour (3 days) with an emergency C-section performed after my daughter started showing signs of distress. Whilst in hospital recovering from my operation I can recal the feelings of overwhelming resentment; I wished she just wasn't there and didn't want to hold her or feed her at all. I stayed in hospital for a week and during all that time I was happiest when my daughter wasn't near me at all. I performed all the perfunctory duties that a mother should, but at not one point did I feel ANYTHING for this child at all. I felt awful, but had no one to talk to. How could I explain that I felt nothing for this child that had just been born? Who would understand? By the time my daughter was 6 months old, I had unfortunately split up from her father and due to my dire financial circumstances was forced to go and live with my parents as I had no money of my own. This was the worst thing I could ever have done. My mother had always wanted another child and she took this opportunity to monopolise mine, leaving me with even less time to bond. I even found my own mother attempting to breast feed my own baby one night. Disgusting. Still, though, I just had no choice, I had nowhere else to live as my partner gave me no support or living allowance to get by on (despite being a successful accountant in a big firm in the City). Within years of this living arrangement, my mother had successfully manipulated the relationship between herself and my daughter to the extent that whenever I tried to establish "ground rules" and "care" arrangements regarding my daughter I would be told "whilst you are both living under my roof, living on my money, you will both be subject to my rules". I was back again to being the abused child of my past. During an argument one night with my mother I threatened to just walk out with my daughter and just leave. Within days, I then received a letter from a firm of solicitors informing me that due to my "irrational demeanour" my mother had been granted a residency and parental responsibility order in terms. Now in the eyes of the law, I had no choice as to where my own daughter lived or to how she was brought up. Once my mother had obtained residency of my daughter things turned from bad to worse and she made my life utter hell. I didn't have any money still but in desperation went to a firm of solicitors in order to try and reverse the court orders. I ran up a debt of thousands of pounds, but was still unable to overturn what had already been put in place as I still had no permanent alternative home in which to bring up my child. After years of abuse at my mothers hands, I decided one day that I just couldn't take it anymore and decided to pack my bags and leave to go and live in a bed sit (which was all I could afford) on the salary that I was earning at the time. Years went by, like this, with me visiting to try and see my daughter with my mother either allowing me access or not, depending on her mood. I thought that when my daughter became of age at 18, things would be different and that I would once again begin to build a relationship with her. Sadly, it's not worked out well. My mothers manipulation runs deep and my daughter believes every lie that my mother has told her (my father being totally complicit in this arrangement). To this day, I wish I had felt differently and had been stronger, but in reflection I was not well myself at the time and just was not strong enough as a person. I'm writing to you as I just wanted to let you know that you're not alone. I am now in my late 40s and it is has taken until now for me to be able to talk about my trauma and abuse (at the hands of my mother) as a child. I have recently begun therapy and am beginning to realise that my feelings of detachment were a result of childhood trauma. If you want to write back, please do, I'd be happy to chat and offer any support if I can.
I notice op hasn't come back, didn't get the sympathy she craved and instead got left holding the responsibility for it all. Something about this thread has made my blood boil. If I were the daughter I would be enraged to be approached now by a mother seeking solice and repair and would be suspicious about motives. I hope ops daughter is ok and has gone on to find love in her life.
ok. I'll give you an example of my nana (mum's mum) who had her first child unplanned and got married, she then got divorced and remarried and had her 2nd child (my mum) who was sort of planned.
when she had my mum and brought up her 1st DD it was WW2. so a tough time all round. her 2nd DH also cheated on her during WW2 when abroad and they divorced soon after WW2 ended. No surprise that when she did marry for a 3rd time it was for financial security and though he wanted children she didn't.
anyways - my nana would sometimes say to my mum and her DSis - that she'd wished she'd never had them as she would've preferred a career as a solicitor (she worked in that field anyway), I don't think she ever mentioned not loving them but she certainly wasn't maternal or even very grandmaternal when my brother and I were her grandchildren.
FFW a few years when my nana was approx 70 and us kids were 5 or so and she DID love us and my mother but again it was more financial help. there was the love stuff but my mum often felt well not unloved but it was different. when my nana died about 90 years old there was a great deal of love between her and both of her DD, they all acknowledged it.
BUT it took a long time coming and a few years of love/hate/arguments etc. What was really touching was after my mum left home when she was a teenager there was a letter my nana left privately with her presents or gave to her at Christmas, detailed how sad she was her DD had left home, how her room was empty, really touching and nostalgic. my mum still has this letter and it was proof (even though they were rowing and maybe had fallen out before or after this letter was written) that her DM DID love her.
I think if there are any questions now therapy is the way to go as well as talking to the DD - it is NEVER too late imo/e.
I do have some sympathy that you feel this way and it upsets you, but I also think it is a shame that you have left it until now to ask for help. This sounds like an issue that needed to be dealt with around the time of birth. Personally, I can't imagine not loving a child - although I do accept that it happens - and as mothers we have the responsibility to love and cherish and protect our children. If the feelings of love don't come readily then you have to work work work at them and make extra effort. It might feel harder to make one on one time for them but you just have to do it. It's not her fault you feel this way. Everyone deserves to have the unconditional love of their mother - imagine if you had known growing up that your mother didn't love you. If you can feel sad for your daughter and what she has missed out on then perhaps that will motivate you to work at your relationship with her. Never ever tell her. The only motivation for doing so would be to get it off your chest - no-one could benefit from being told that their mother never really loved them and they were the unwanted child. By all means get some counselling for yourself to help you know how better to work at your relationship and perhaps develop love for her, but don't involve her in any way or indeed allow her or her siblings to ever find out.
Monkeynuts, the daughter is 26....
And I agree.
The bit that worries me here is that it has taken you until she is 23 to acknowledge this and do something about it and the only motivation for this you mention is because you feel like a crap mother. I would imagine if you wanted to be a better mother for your child you would have taken action on this when she was a baby, when she needed your love, because you wanted to do what was best for her. Not deal with it when she doesn't really need her mothers love anymore and you are reminiscing over your life and taking stock. Sorry but htis just sounds all about you, I read it again and that is what I see.
I totally agree that she will be aware of it on some level. If you feel more affection for one child than another it shows....through all the spontaneous little demonstrations that you can't help making towards someone whom you genuinely adore.
Op continue to be brave, the fact that you know and are prepared to admit it is a huge first step on your path. I'd second the suggestions of counselling. I'd also try and isolate the things you LIKE about your dd. you may not love her in the way you do the others, but I bet there are some things you like and admire about her, and that's a good place to begin your focus. I think children (meaning adult children of adult parents too) NEED to be liked as much as loved.
You aren't a bad parent - you keep trying, you want your DD to believe you love her and it sounds from your OP like you wish you did.
It is a sad situation, but it is one that can be worked on and improved. I wish you and your DD all the best in your journey together.
I agree, she will know. I'd suggest therapy for you and when you have made enough progress then therapy for you and your daughter together. This is sad for both of you.
For what it's worth, I read the OP and was going to write exactly what Specialagent has.
She'll know. I do, and I'm 23. You just do. She will, however, appreciate you trying. She'll appreciate you trying to improve this, and she'll be grateful that you tell her you love her. Keep doing that.
Counselling could be a good idea. Even if all it does is take away some of the guilt that you bare, it will improve your relationship with her. Counselling for her will help too, when she's ready for it. She'll probably seek it out on her own in time, if you don't want to sort it out for her.
You've acknowledged this, and you are trying to be fair and sort it out, and that makes you a good mum. It really does. It makes you infinitely better than a lot of people in this situation, who do nothing.
It's naive to think that she won't know. You just do. That's a good thing, though. It's not something to beat yourself up with - it's something to open communication with, it'll help you work through this together.
specialagent I have clearly upset you. I did not intend to deny your experience and I am sorry if it came across that way.
Was the situation you were in when your dd was born different to the situations you were in when your other children were born?
I have a feeling this is probably more common than people admit to. You can admit it and you try your best to cover it up. This makes you a good parent, not a bad one.
Get some good professional counselling which should give you some more insight and help you cope with your feelings.
My mother doesn't love me, not like she loves my siblings. But she tries her damnedest by faking it, and I love her for that. It's not perfect, but we manage.
Look back to the early days when you would have been bonding with her. You were a child yourself already caring for another baby. You probably just resented her right from the start. No one could blame you for feeling like that but it was a crazy situation and your DD suffered and you were left with all this guilt.
Okay then. I'll discredit every poster on here who has said how they 'knew' things that were then admitted as adults to be true.
I don't want to derail OP's thread as I feel she's been very brave to start it and I imagine it cannot have been easy. So whatever, you're right. Her daughter is probably a narc or sociopath that was obvious from birth. I won't post again. You're absolutely right.
Good luck OP. It took guts to ask for help.
I disagree with you. How can you generalise like that - you haven't even met them. For all we know the disconnect the OP describes has to do with a personality disorder on the part of her child.
Because Amanda I have personal experience of this. Children are very intuitive and after 26 years, she would know.
OP doesn't have to agree but I think it would be naive to assume the OP's DD doesn't sense the difference in the relationship with her compared to all her other siblings.
I'm not judging, I think OP was very brave to post here and is doing the right thing. I just don't think pretending this won't have had an effect on DD's side of the relationship is helpful.
Good luck OP.
There was another thread an age ago about a mum who lived with her ds's but her dd lived with her mum as she felt she didn't love her.
Have a search for it, I'm pretty sure she had counselling and there were some positive results.
Forums like this give the opportunity to talk about these issues frankly, as in the past it may have been very difficult to broach such a sensitive and emotive subject. Good luck op, I'm sure if you seek some professional help you'll gain some insight into the reasons behind your feelings.
Are there other issues? What has she done wrong?
Is there anything wrong in YOUR life that makes you think this way about her?
"Keep faking, but she knows. Of course she knows."
How ridiculous SpecialAgent how could you possibly know what OP's daughter knows? Ignore this OP.
I think you sound like a good mum. My mother also does not love me (and has admitted as much to me) and she has never told me she loved me or shown me any affection. Instead, she has rationalised it by convincing herself that I am a horrible person.
You do tell your DD you love her. Just keep doing that and make sure you treat her the same as the others (my parents treat me differently to my siblings, e.g. giving them money and not me etc, all rationalised away with various excuses. Most hurtful was my mother commissioning beautiful plates for each of my siblings on their marriages, but not one for me - still refused to when my Dsis told her she should have done one for me too).
Counselling to help you work out why you never bonded with her would be good for you. I agree with PP who said at 16 with another baby, life must have been very tough for you.
Is your DD resentful towards you or does she seem happy with your relationship?
Please seek therapy, may I ask why you never have if you've always felt this way?
Keep faking, but she knows. Of course she knows.
Perhaps seek family therapy with her after your own to build a proper relationship with her?
I would definetly seek progressions help on this issue. Do you love the other children? Did you immediately feel bonded with the other children? Does your daughter have any idea you feel this way?
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