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AIBU?

Middle son moved in with his dad

32 replies

JoP65 · 29/11/2019 10:24

Hi there,
I may be being a bit sensitive but I split from my husband over 10 years ago and raised my 3 kids on my own without any help from ex.
Did the best I could and didn’t get into the spiteful game that my ex started with telling viscous lies about why we split.
My middle son has obviously believed those lies and about a month ago moved out of mine to live with his dad. I didn’t get a Mother’s Day card nor birthday card and he doesn’t come round to visit. I miss him dearly and have tried talking to him but to no avail. I’ve emptied his room (it was a little like a shrine to him) and he says I’m now being unreasonable because I want to take it to him.
I also won’t be seeing him this Christmas. It seems he’s cut me out of he’s life entirely. Don’t know what to do.

OP posts:
vivacian · 29/11/2019 10:26

How old ate your children?

JoP65 · 29/11/2019 11:29

Hi Vivacian
My eldest son is 30, the son that has moved out is 23 and my daughter Is 21. Daughter still lives with me it’s my middle son that is believing his dads lies 😥

OP posts:
BlackeyedSusan · 29/11/2019 11:32

That is so difficult. He may have to find out for himself.

Does he keep in contact with his siblings?

vivacian · 29/11/2019 11:34

Do you have any evidence that he’s believing lies? It’s not unknown for men that age to be bad with acknowledging birthdays and whatnot.

JoP65 · 29/11/2019 12:02

Hi Vivacian,
He only keeps in contact if they do.
My eldest son is wiser, obviously and has told me he is believing the lies he’s being told 😥

OP posts:
JoP65 · 29/11/2019 12:03

Hi BlackeyedSusan,

He only keeps in touch if they do, it I have since found out he is believing the lies from my eldest son, who is obviously a lot wiser! 😥

OP posts:
HouseworkAvoider10 · 29/11/2019 12:11

Leave him to it.
Honestly boys/men are just dickheads, at times.

He'll find out what his dad is like, sooner or later.
What their dad did to you, he'll do to him, eventually.

Your "d"s will probably come back groveling, at some later stage.
He does sound like a bit of a toolbox, if i'm honest.
Maybe its better he's out of your hair for a while.

Aderyn19 · 29/11/2019 12:21

Keep his room for him, if you can. Or at least keep hold of his stuff. Clearing the room reinforces what his dad is saying and makes it clear there's no going back, which will make him dig his heels in further.
Tell him you love him and that you will be ready to talk to him in the future and that he needs to judge for himself rather than take his dad's word as gospel. Keep sending Christmas and birthday presents. Anything else plays into his dad's hands.
Send him a friendly message every so often.
Other than that all you can do is wait. Don't allow rudeness or disrespect though. You are his mother and you've raised him single handedly. You are entitled to good manners.

Bartlet · 29/11/2019 12:26

Why would she keep his room for him? He’s 23. An age where many people move out. If he’d been 13 then that’s a totally different story.

Make contact with him every so often so he knows the door is still open but ultimately he is an adult who can make his own choices. It must be hard and hurtful for you but you can’t force an adult child to keep in touch if they don’t want to.

Surfskatefamily · 29/11/2019 12:28

Its really important to continue contact attempts. I know a few people (the adult child) in this situation.
Even if it's a weekly text to say you love him , hows work? Etc etc
If you stop trying he might think you've moved on. Silly as it sounds a 23 year old man often isn't much different emotionally that a teen ime

billandbenflowerpotmen1 · 29/11/2019 12:36

I've always cleared rooms once kids have moved out particularly by that age. However, with DD, she was backwards and forwards from 21 to about 23 so the house was ever changing for a few years.
Your son is now a fully grown adult and lives elsewhere, clear the room and give him his property whether he likes it or not.
Time and maturity are great healers and I hope that one day you manage to reestablish a relationship with him

vivacian · 29/11/2019 12:55

I think if he was 13, I’d be more concerned. At this age, I think it’s fairly normal for him to be separating from you. His dad’s is just a stepping stone.

Harriett123 · 29/11/2019 13:03

Leave him to it hes an adult. He will figure out what his dads like.
My cousin choose her verbally abusive alcoholic father over her mother when they seperated (at the time she was 20). It took her a week of being his emotional punching bag before she tried to pour a bottle of whiskey down the sink. Needless to say that didnt end well and she came running back to her mum pretty quickly.
If your ex is a liar and not a nice person your son will figure it out.

Aderyn19 · 29/11/2019 13:22

I think clearing the room is fine under normal circumstances, where the family is happy and there's no poisonous ex stirring the pot. Here though, if it's possible to keep the room,bi think it would help

Butchyrestingface · 29/11/2019 13:57

Given the circumstances, I think clearing his room is a touch premature. He’s only been gone a month - given some more time, the scales may very well fall from his eyes regarding daddy-o, and he returns home duly chastened.

But by turning his room into a study or whatever, you’re removing any room for manoeuvre on his part at a very early stage. And his father may use that as (another) excuse to badmouth you.

ColaFreezePop · 29/11/2019 15:14

Wait 6 months then clear out his room. Repaint it to your taste and make sure the room has some form of bed in it even if it is a sofa bed or day bed.

He is 23 not 16 and should start to make his own way in the world. Going to his dad's as a PP said is just a stepping stone to this.

changeforprivacy · 29/11/2019 15:19

I don't think you have to do anything. He is 23!

Leave them to it.

Dontdisturbmenow · 29/11/2019 15:22

There's in all likelihood more to it then him believing that you caused the breakup of your marriage if you had a close bond before. Surely at his age, he will be capable of making a rational assessment of what he is being told and to come and talk to you about it.

There must be more to it if ultimately he has suddenly decided to have nothing to do with you. It is sad but it's all about context.

Womenwotlunch · 29/11/2019 15:28

Leave him to it. However, make it clear to him that you love him and will always be there for him

littlepaddypaws · 29/11/2019 15:41

i must admit i thought ds was going to be about 13 or similar. he's an adult and he needs to stand on his own two feet not whining about you clearing his room out.

JoP65 · 30/11/2019 09:51

Thank you all so much for your advice and very kind responses.
Although I have emptied his room of his belongings, the bed is still there and made up (just in case)! You never know and I live in hope.
I do realise that at the age of 23 he is a man now and makes his own decisions. That said, his move was based on lies from his dad.
Anyway, as a lot of you have said, time to move on.
His bed is still there if needed or wanted and I tell him how much I love him often. Our household is now a very happy one, with my daughter and my partner and my eldest visits often, so can’t complain really I suppose. I’ve only just joined this site, but having read some great advice thought I’d pop this on here, and I’m so glad I did. I feel better realising it isn’t just happening to me.
Thank you all ❤️❤️

OP posts:
fit4more · 30/11/2019 10:04

How sad that he was impressionable enough at 23 to go like that. He sounds very immature? Can’t the older brother talk to him? If it was me I’d send a text saying “just to let you know I’m keeping your room for you. It’s here when you need it. I over reacted because I was extremely hurt. Sorry for that. I’d love if I could give you my side of the story about why me and your dad split. There are two sides to every story. I brought you up as a single mum, in very hard circumstances, receiving zero financial help from your father. I did my best. Hopefully one day you will realise that and I hope you will speak to your brother if you can’t speak to me. I’m here when you’re ready” then I think you might just have to leave it. Could it be that he thinks the grass is greener? He gets to be an “adult” at his dads house. It’s a bit weird that he’s going from parent to parent at his age anyway. I think you just have to have the best Christmas you can. Get the rest of your family together and have a celebration. Take a happy family snap and send it to him. “Happy Christmas son. We all love you and miss you. Hope you’re having a great day” don’t go buying him any gifts though or begging him. He needs to start to realise the seriousness of his actions and that the consequences of his behaviour are that the result is no mummy spoiling and missing out. How is his Christmas Day with just his dad going to look? Bleak? No gifts? I’d wait it out if I was you.

littlepaddypaws · 30/11/2019 10:05

jo i for one, think you are doing the right thing, keep the door open for him.

GrimalkinsCrone · 30/11/2019 10:05

I think having a bedspace for him if he needs it is a lovely way of letting him know that you haven’t ended the relationship, but at 23, it’s reasonable to respond to him as an adult and say that as he’s moved out, his stuff goes with him. Then you just have to be patient.

fit4more · 30/11/2019 10:06

Also, if his dad is as you say, then an older more selfish version isn’t going to be any better. He won’t be able to keep up the act for long!

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