This is another mother daughter story, whereby I am the mother (44) and she is my daughter (19). I am totally devastated as she has told me that she does not to have anything to do with me anymore. The story behind it is just a more or less normal family story. And that is why I canít understand her and my only explanation is, that she has been manipulated or even brainwashed.
The first 4 years I was a single mother with her in Germany, as I am German. Her father did not want any contact with her. When she was 4 I met my husband, whom she liked and whom she asked after half a year if she could call him dad. Eventually we got married, her first brother was born when she was six, we moved to England when she was eight and when she was 12 her little brother was born. All the time we had a normal family live, loved each other, had our arguments of course but nothing prepared me for how it is now. When she was a teenager of 15/16, I always thought she is too good to be true. No real teenage strops as I remembered them from my own time as a teenager. Yes, she had her arguments, especially with my husband, but nothing serious. She could see that it was necessary, that everybody in a household of 5 had to muck in and do their bit, OK, she had to baby sit her brothers in holidays, when I was at work, but not constantly, and if she wanted to go out and meet her friends who lived in the next town, I tried as often as possible to make it happen. As she was a more introvert person, I encouraged her to go out more and to meet other people of her age. I gave her lifts to youth clubs and sport clubs or to the town where her school friends lived. All the years I tried to make sure that she knew she was loved.
When she was 17 she met her boyfriend. And again, I gave her and him lifts to make it possible that they could see each other as often as possible. We gave him every chance to find his place within our family, but yes, if we thought his behaviour was not acceptable, we criticised his behaviour and told our daughter that we were not happy with the way he behaved. E.g. being snappy, nearly rude when talked to, braking things in the house and not even apologise etc. On the other side, his family (as well three children and he is the oldest) treated her from day one as someone very special, like she belonged to the family since ages. As far as I understand in his family life is ruled by the children, the say jump and mum and dad will ask how high.
Just after her 18th birthday she moved away to go to uni. He went by his choice to the same city to Uni but for the first year they stayed in different halls, although they spent all spare time in either his room or hers. This was, when trouble began. She was quite homesick, and I missed her as well, so we talked a lot on the phone, about twice a week. After 4 weeks she came home the first time. This was when she told me, that she should not call me as often and I shouldnít call her as often as he thinks she is too dependent on me and she has to be more independent. Whereby I have to say, that spring he came home from a planned 3 month Europe trip after just 4 weeks because he was so homesick. Next time I visited her 4 weeks later and the next time she came for Christmas, whereby he insisted that she should spend Christmas day with him and his family, what she did although her granddad from Germany was here. The following spring we asked her to come with us to a skiing holiday for the next Christmas. First she did not want, then she changed her mind after me begging her to come as I saw her less and less. We booked the hols, kitted her out for skiing, took her to skiing lessons and she was looking forward to the planned hols. In summer she spent one of her 3 weeks holidays with us telling me that the 2nd week she will spend with him at his parents house, lying about the third week, telling me she has to work. Unfortunately I found out that she has lied and told her that the lye was what made me upset. She then told me, that she had to promise him to spent 2 weeks with him, as she will spent Christmas with us. A few weeks later she decided spontaneously to meet us at a holiday at the seaside for 3 days and got into trouble with him for that. In these 3 days I took the chance and tried to talk to her about our relationship and how her behaviour hurt me. She was very emotional and told me that she was not happy about the worsening relationship either and she feels a bit torn. After this talk I thought we had found a common starting point from where we could go ahead. 3 Weeks later she told me first time she doesnít want to see me for a while and she doesnít come to the holidays. We got quite angry about it, as we were looking forward to spent some quality time with her and her brothers and of course because we had spent a lot of money on her. Things calmed down, I visited her and we spent an afternoon together. When I took her back to the place where by now they live together, he just looked at me as if he wanted to say ďyou stupid cow, just goĒ. A week later again the call, I donít want to see you again. I still tried to keep in contact, tried to explain how much this situation hurts me and her brothers, but did not push her to see us. Once I had to go to the city where she is studying and asked her the evening before if we could meet for a coffee. Her reaction was a bit strange as she told me she will think about it and call me later. Two hours later she called me and said no. In the new year things seemed to get a bit better. Last Friday she came for her brotherís birthday for a few hours. It was the first time since more then half a year, that I have seen her. I have to admit, that I was not looking forward to this, as I feared to be pushed away by her again. And I was right! A stranger could not have been colder then she was. Later I took her back to his family as she is staying there for the Easter holidays. She was as cold as ice. I was so upset that I could not sleep that night. Saturday I called her and asked her for a talk as the whole situation is taking its toll by now. Her answer was she has to think about it. 5 Minutes later I got a text, telling me, that she does not want to speak to me face to face, only on the telephone. So I called her and told her that she had the right to refuse to see me for more then half a year and now I think I have the right to say that I want to see her, just her and me. But no, she did not want and told me, that since nearly two years we are manipulating her and putting her under pressure and she canít stand this anymore. I went to his families place, thinking this canít be true, she is not a young teenager anymore, she is an adult, wants to be treated as an adult, so she can act as an adult. I got to see her, both of us in tears, and tried to talk to her. I asked her if she really does not want to belong to the family anymore and she said that she does want to see her brothers occasionally, but not her parents. The reasons are, she told me, that we always criticise her, manipulate her because as her parents we would know which buttons to press and constantly put her under pressure. My answer was, that she criticises us as well, and the button press game works for both sides, as she as my child does know exactly which buttons to press as well. I tried to explain, that I got the impression, that she has been manipulated, but not by us, as she even canít make any spontaneous decisions anymore. She does not see this at all, and thinks it is right not to decide spontaneous at anytime. I did not start an argument and tried to talk to her as calm as possible, but all I got was a look full of hatred at the end. I think her boyfriend and his family have manipulated her, as he is an unsecure 21 year old one, who wants total control of her and her time and started his manipulating massivly in a time she was most vulnerable. Please can anybody tell me what to do? Have I lost my daughter? I am heartbroken and can't stop crying since Friday.