Do my Parents Have a Right to see My Children if They Don’t Love Me?


12399970_10201138795870244_1750274099_oThis time of year can be really difficult for survivors of dysfunctional family dynamics, and survivors of any kind of childhood trauma, abuse and or neglect. The same applies to the situation for adult children who have been or are currently dealing with narcissistic mother or narcissistic parent issues or abusive and emotionally unavailable parents in general.

I get lots of email from people asking me how I dealt with the whole ‘going no contact’ issue. When this time of year rolls around, those questions are triplicated. There is just something about Christmas that triggers us to wonder if we are in fact the actual problem when it comes to strained relationship with members of our families and something about this time of year makes us revisit our self-doubt whether we have already made the decision to go no contact or if we are simply trying to sort out if we even have a right to feel discounted or if we imagined the whole dysfunctional family thing.

In particular at this time of year, I get asked to address parental rights when it comes to our children and their relationship with our parents, their grandparents.

Because I have been putting everything through the ‘truth grid of understanding’ for so long now, there are things that are much more obvious or logical to me now, then they were 10 years ago and today I look at it this way;

My parents treated me with disregard. My mother and father have very different relationship styles, my mother is verbally abusive and dismissive and much more overtly abusive and my father is more covertly and passively abusive and therefore also dismissive and both of them feel entitled to treat me however they want to but the point is that my children witnessed the way they dismissed me.

Because I accepted the way that they treated me, my children received a specific message about me through the way I was regarded. My children saw people treat me like I was not important. They saw people treat me like my feelings were invalid; they got the message that it was okay to treat people that way and they got the message that it was okay to treat their mother that way. Perhaps even worse than that, they saw me try to please these people in spite of the way they treated me! They saw me ‘accept’ that treatment. Since I have come out of the fog in this situation, why would I want those people around my children?

People tell me that their parents would never hurt their children. I wonder why adult children believe that their parents would be so wonderful to everyone else and that they (as the child of those parents) were the exception to the rule when it comes to the truth about who their parents really are when it comes to the way they treat people? But then I remember that I know exactly why we believe that.

When we are kids we are convinced that WE are the problem. We are brainwashed to believe that we are deficient, that we are somehow defective and that if we were not defective ~ if we were ‘different’ our lives and their feelings towards us would have been different. We are convinced that if only we could have been the children they wanted then we would have been loved. We believe that our parents would have loved us if we had been good enough. We believe that if we had been the children they dreamed of, smarter, more beautiful, more loving, more compliant, less of a burden, then we would have been treasured, loved, accepted, celebrated and secure.

Since we don’t see our own children in the ways our parents regarded us, we can’t imagine that our parents would ever treat our children the ways that they have treated us. Because we see our children as the wonderful treasures they are, we can’t imagine that our parents would ever judge our children in the same ways they judged us so we don’t see any danger in our children having a relationship with our parents if we decide that we are no longer going to have relationship with our parents. (This also applies in the case of our drawing boundaries with our parents and they refuse to respect those boundaries and therefore it is actually the parents who have walked away.)

And here is the thing ~ sometimes our parents don’t judge our children in those ways but how are we to ever know what they are going to do? Perhaps they are grooming our children in a different way and for a different purpose. I have heard horrendous stories; grandparents who have filed for custody, and won by convincing the courts that the parent is unfit. I have heard of grandparents who have turned children against parents, grandparents who have used grandchildren to help them overpower parents oh the nasty list goes on. Sometimes it won’t serve the purpose of the grandparent to treat the grandchild in the same ways that they treated their own children. The dangerous thing about this is that people who do things with a motive that has anything to do with control are unpredictable!

People tell me that their parents “love” their grandchildren. But what is loving about treating that child’s mother or father with disregard and disrespect? Where is the example of love in that treatment?

People tell me that one or both of their parents are narcissists, but they forget that a narcissist is a narcissist ~ no matter WHO they are dealing with. Narcissists are only interested in themselves, so in that regard, what is their interest in relationship with your children? Think about it carefully. Some parents want to be ‘right’ so badly that they will try to discredit you when it comes to your children for the sole purpose proving that they are right about you; so right in fact that your own children have turned against you. (The same applies to spouses who turn the children against one parent.)

It is important to think about the truth when we are making decisions about our own children. I realized that I am the parent. I realized that I had a choice even though I had been convinced and brainwashed that I didn’t have a choice. I had power, even though I had been convinced that I was powerless. I had to reject that lie and take my life and my choices back.

There is no obligation just because the word family is involved. People who don’t care about me, are not good role models for my children. People who treat me as though I am nothing and call me crazy are going to communicate their judgments about me to my children, even if those judgments are non-verbal. And as most of us have experienced first hand, sometimes those people are really convincing.

Think about it this way; whose fault is it when we decide that it is best for our children not to see our parents? Why did we have to consider that decision in the first place? Parents may accuse that we are seeking revenge when we decide that when it comes to our children we are a package deal. Just because our families are saying that we are seeking revenge, does that make it the truth??

Here are some questions you can put through the truth grid this holiday season;

Ask yourself if you were seeking revenge, what you would be seeking revenge for, and then ask yourself it is really revenge you are after, or peace?

What is your motive for standing up to abusive family? My motive came from the desire for relationship based on love and mutual respect.

Ask yourself if you were loved and valued, would you even be considering going or staying no contact?

Ask yourself if your parents don’t treat you in the action of love, are they loving to your children and if you believe they are loving your children, think about how a parent who rejects their own child communicates love to the child of that rejected parent.

Ask yourself why it would be ‘best’ for your children to have a relationship with your parents if that relationship is independent of you. 

It has always been through my examination of the truth that I have found the true answers that set me free to be me and to reclaim my life and my emotional health.

Merry Christmas and happy holidays to those who celebrate! Peace and love to all those who don’t celebrate.

I hope you will consider sharing this post in support of people who may be struggling with difficult family dynamics this holiday season. As always, please feel free to share your comments no matter what they are about. This is a very supportive and safe space.

Exposing Truth, one snapshot at a time;

Darlene Ouimet

Have you seen The Emerging from Broken bookThe Beginning of Hope for Emotional Healing”? If you find that the subject matter I am writing about resonates with you, get this book today! This 197 page, downloadable, printable, live linked e-book will put you on the fast track to busting out of the fog and to healing.  Get yours here through the upper right side bar or click this link~ Emerging from Broken The Beginning of Hope for Emotional Healing

91 response to "Do my Parents Have a Right to see My Children if They Don’t Love Me?"

  1. By: Kris Posted: 29th December


    What you wrote reminded me of my self. I clung onto any tidbit that my mother would throw my way because in my mind that meant that she still loved me but this year when I refused to cave into her demands she returned my Christmas gift with a note telling me how it brings her very little joy not giving me anything at all and by her doing this to me it gave me a chance to really look at just what exactly she has been giving me over these past 3 years of virtually NC and what I saw was a bunch of emails forwarded to her by her cohorts that she sent to me all lecturing me on how to be a better daughter and how I should remain loyal to a family that didn’t remain loyal to me and in that moment I saw that my mother really wasn’t showing me her love at all and in fact what she was really doing was trying to control my every thought and move just like she has done all of my life. I just didn’t want to see this truth because with it comes a world full of pain with the realization that my mother never really cared about me and my well being to begin with …it was all about her.

    In a sense I feel relieved even though at the time it royally sucked to go through this bullcrap at the holidays. I feel like I no longer will be waiting around for any signs of reconciliation from my mother anymore because now I know that that day will never happen not because of anything that I did wrong but because of her refusal to do her part that doesn’t allow me any room to maneuver unless I still want to be her doormat which I don’t!!…and to me that spells more freedom. A lot of time and energy went into that dream that I can now use to focus on me and my recovery instead of worrying about will she or won’t she contact me anymore.

  2. By: S1988 Posted: 29th December

    Well, my Christmas has been pretty peaceful. A few days before Christmas, I went to Iowa to visit my friend and sleepover for the night. I guess I can think for her and her family as my non-biological family since they’re healthier than my biological one. I see her once a year because she’s a graduate student and travels a lot, but that’s okay because in my view, people don’t have to see each other a lot to remain friends.

    About my current family situation: I don’t want to speak too soon, but I wonder if my family has finally given up on trying to pull me back in. Usually I get those “I love you, I miss you” emails during holidays, but I haven’t gotten those in weeks. I still watch out for my mother when I go out since we live in the same town, but I wonder if she and other family members grew tired of my lack of response. A part of me wishes to get something on the lines of “Let’s meet at a restaurant and talk about improving our relationship.”, but I highly doubt that will happen since it’s “all my fault” even though they “love” me.


    Yep, reconciliation would most liking happen in fiction than in real life. I wonder if I’ll be blamed for my mother’s death when the time comes. But then again, she’s been ill since as long as I can remember. I have a memory of visiting her in the hospital along with my older sister as a child, and she has been sleeping with the aid of a CPAP since I was in middle school (or probably longer). I can imagine my obsequious older siblings putting the blame on me, but I know that other things could have contributed to it such as genetics or other things I don’t know about. My mother loves to blame the job she worked at and hated for all that’s wrong with her, but I doubt her health problems are the result of one factor. (Sigh!) Something to look forward to, I suppose, in the next several years.

  3. By: d ch Posted: 29th December

    Hey Hobie, you said- It’s hard to come to terms myself with the probability that my mother’s illness won’t be the opportunity for reconciliation that makes Hallmark movies popular. However, I can see that my family is most likely to respond to this crisis by deepening their attachment to the dysfunction they’ve chosen for decades.”

    I envision me at my NM,s bedside, and she blames me for her illness, reminds me of how terrible I have been by NC, Now I come to see her, blah blah blah bullsh3t, That I just want her to re-include me in her will….(I was told earlier this year by NM I am “off” her will, I said, “so money can’t buy happiness, I don’t have much now, and know how to not live High on the Hog” 🙂

    Dammmnnnnnnnn! If looks could kill, I wouldn’t be writing this!

    Hang tough, I feel the same way as you!

  4. By: d ch Posted: 29th December

    Hi, Darlene, You commented: “I had to take a good look at how I learned to take the blame for almost everything in the first place. I might write a new article about this very thing! ”

    If you do write an article on this, I could fill pages with my Blamed/Guilt experiences!
    (I may win the prize of best contributing Commentor! LOL)

    *Note: I don’t feel guilty posting this, or wanting to share! 🙂

    Happy New Year Everyone! And Celebrate Every New Day!

  5. By: LeeTheGirl Posted: 29th December

    Happy New Year, everyone!

    Here’s hoping 2016 doesn’t treat anyone too badly. 😉

  6. By: Hobie Posted: 29th December

    I allowed my children a relationship with their grandparents even when I felt I needed to avoid contact. At this point it seems to have cost me a relationship with one of my children and all of her children, and it has strained the relationship I have with another child.

    My relationship with my third child is currently being renegotiated. While my mother has a lot to do with the difficulties there, a lot of other influences are also involved.

    I learned on Christmas eve that my mother has been hospitalized since a week before Christmas. She has avoided doctors most of her life and is now dealing with a number of issues she can no longer avoid.

    My initial gut reaction was that I wanted to see her and try to offer some kind of comfort or kindness. I’ve been strongly discouraged from doing so, and for now, I’m glad. I’ve been NC for nearly 2 years now and if I don’t resume the active role as family scapegoat, I’m pretty sure that my presence won’t be welcome.

    I’m thankful that my one child was blunt enough to ask, “Won’t you feel bad if she dies and you didn’t see her?” I responded that I won’t feel bad that I didn’t see her if seeing her would only upset her.

    It’s hard to come to terms myself with the probability that my mother’s illness won’t be the opportunity for reconciliation that makes Hallmark movies popular. However, I can see that my family is most likely to respond to this crisis by deepening their attachment to the dysfunction they’ve chosen for decades.

    Whatever I do, whether I try to make contact, or maintain my distance, I will be the one who created the problem that they could have managed otherwise.

    I’m trying now to determine specifically what I will be the best way for me to live with myself through the situation, because I believe I’m going to have to face criticism anyway.

    Happy New Year


  7. By: Hobie Posted: 29th December

    Just checking…

  8. By: Hobie Posted: 29th December

    I’m just experimenting with a different browser. My attempts to post have not shown up and I don’t think I was being offensive.

    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 29th December

      Hi Hobie
      It seems that the last updates to wordpress has wiped out a few things. You might have to make sure that your info is still filled into the comment form. 🙁 It isn’t you. I have noticed several people who share regularly are being held in moderation which under normal circumstances means “first time commenter” which you are not.. check that in the other browser and see if that works.
      hugs, Darlene

      • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 29th December

        Hi Hobie
        I just went trough the spam folder and found 2 comments that belonged to you! These last updates really messed a few things up. I marked you as “not spam” so it should be okay now.

        Dear Kris,
        Thank you for addressing KateE on my behalf. The reason that KateE is in moderation is because of her abusive bursts towards me and other readers (under this name as well as under another name) over the last few years. This is also the second time that I have explained to her why her comments don’t always show up right away. I am willing to give EVERYONE a chance here, but when something goes wrong for someone and they immediately decide to tear me apart, (and KateE really said some nasty things about me) and then when I explain, they refuse to even own up to their side of it… well that is exactly the old system of relationship that we are all trying to put behind us isn’t it?
        Hugs, Darlene

  9. By: Joanne Posted: 28th December

    Thank you for those questions Darlene – I am definitely seeking peace rather than revenge, and my motive for standing up to my mother’s manipulative behaviour is the same as my motive for finding it much harder than in the past to stand up to her – wanting my daughter to have a happy life and different experience to me. Strange that I’ve been believing that having her spend time with the person who brought me up is the way to do that!

    My mind is more at peace than in ages after a few days of spending Christmas NOT with my mother. I’m grateful for some validation I’ve found on this site which may have swung being able to stick to that to some extent. However every time I pass the phone and message machine the guilt she installed about not seeing her and my toddler not being given her presents is there. I can see my daughter isn’t that bothered with presents, let alone opening them at “the right time”, and if my mother was so concerned about what she says she is then she could have posted them. Seeing a toddler opening presents you’ve got for them is as much for you as for them. The presents she’s got have now become a symbol of her martydom and my difficultness and ingratitude, more valuable to her to hold on to as a tool to make me feel guilty. It’s like when I left home and all she could do was shout about a grimy old saucepan I’d tried to take with me. The saucepan was just a symbol and to anyone outside it looks crazy that her only child was leaving home and she was being a total b#### and ranting about a saucepan like I was worth nothing. If she was at peace she could see the truth and how much more important peace and people being comfortable and happy (truly loved) is, compared to some symbol. It’s as if there is a burning ball of rejection burning inside her, and whenever any glimmer of rejection comes her way, she becomes nothing but the ball – all the love and compassion is eclipsed and all she can do is scorch people. That’s part of the damage done to people by narcissistic parents I think (as my mother had them herself but worse I think). I know have the same thing myself in me and when something happens that makes me feel rejected my mood goes down, when someone does something that makes me feel used I lash out – I don’t have an awareness of their feelings at that time. But it is not the something that was done, it’s the years of layers of the past and seeing things through that filter. More and more I’m learning to see it and have more insight to dowse the flames, but I don’t believe I’ll ever be truly fully “healed” from the damage of my childhood – temporarily maybe, but the roots go so deep. But the more I see and understand what triggers me, the more I can see reality through the cloud of what has hurt me in the past, give things and people the benefit of the doubt, and not be so consumed with hurt that I cause hurt in response, until the next time I do and then regret it.

    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 29th December

      Hi Yvonne
      YAY for surviving Christmas with no contact!
      Thanks for sharing,
      hugs, Darlene

      Hi Joanne,
      Welcome to Emerging from Broken
      I struggled with guilt for a long time. I had to ask myself over and over again what it was that I had to feel guilty about and when I answered those questions, I had to take a good look at how I learned to take the blame for almost everything in the first place. I might write a new article about this very thing!
      Glad you are here,
      Hugs, Darlene

  10. By: Yvonne Posted: 28th December

    Hi All,

    I survived Christmas with no contact from my Narc mom and cousin. I am truly sorry for everybody with children who are used as pawns by their grandparents. It’s hard every year since I don’t really fit into any particular box.

    My Narc mom was alone this year and Narc cousin did not visit her for a change—-he must have had better plans. I have never met my Narc cousin’s daughter(age 18) and I really don’t want to. It’s not that I have anything against her directly, but I realized how painful it is to deal with anyone remotely connected with my Narc mom and cousin. I wonder if this is normal or not? I question the fact of how much I have healed if I can’t stand to be in the same room with the daughter? It just brings up so much anger and I don’t want to pretend to be nice in public since I have bad memories of Narc cousin getting away with so much. I sincerely wish that this cousin’s daughter would move out of state for college, but she lives with her mom in a small town in my state. This Narc cousin likes to visit my mom’s house and even chat with the neighbors. He has manipulated these neighbors into thinking that he is a nice person who cares about my mom.

    I made the choice as a teenager that I would never have a biological child and I made the right choice. The thought crossed my mind way back of having horrible grandparents (my parents)and my child staying with them for babysitting. I knew that I could never trust my parents with lying about me behind my back to my own child to brainwash my kid! I KNOW that my parents were rather affluent and if I became a single parent mom that they would not help us. Every penny was for them and their big luxury house. I can see it now that every birthday for my child would have been a minor gift on clearance or a cheap toy. I feared that my child would have been verbally abused by my parents or experience the terror of my crazy Narc mom’s rage…

    The holiday season also brings up for me the fact that I never had much contact with my father’s side of the family. My Narc mom’s family was total trash and there was also one of her relatives living in our basement. My father put up with anything that she wanted. I was ashamed and humiliated by her and her relatives. I remember one Christmas when I was a teenager, and my father seemed depressed liked all he talked about was his mid-western family. I really wanted to throw out these stupid basement losers on the street so my father could afford to buy a plane ticket to visit his relatives. He was a victim, too.

    To this day, my father’s relatives are a big mystery to me. I went on trip once with my father and they actually seemed nice and normal to me on the surface—-note: I’m very intuitive. I am MAD that I also lost a big part of my family history with the “normal” side of my relations due to my crazy Narc mom and her screwball relatives! I only send a Christmas card to one cousin every year and I don’t know about the future. I think that if I ever get married in the future that I would like some connection with my mid-western cousins. I would like to show my future in-laws that my background is not that bad! I will NEVER visit Seattle(my hometown) ever again for as long as I live, since my mom’s family live there. (I live in a southwest state).

    I do have free will and there is the joy of having the freedom to never call or see my mom’s family ever again. I can send cards in the future to my other cousins. Maybe I will have a connection with them someday. I have been embarrassed by others who ask about my family. I want to say that I do have some decent relatives that I am proud of! I keep NO photos of my mom or mom’s relatives in my home displayed in my hallway photo collages. I have few photos displayed at home of a couple of close friends who died and my “real” father figure, my Cousin Dean.

    I choose not to feel sorry for myself during the holidays since I have more than most people—homeowner, college grad, good job reference, few great friends, my hobbies, my health…but then I ask why me? I think that I’m a nice person but why was I cheated so badly in the family of origin department? I don’t know why but I am only hurt when acquaintances at work and so forth try to shame me for being alone and I’m rather reserved. But the ones that I feel sorry for are the kids and teens who endure yet another horrific holiday of child abuse issues with fighting and screaming and bullying or worse at home by their parents who live in “normal” houses and neighborhoods. Thank goodness that I’m a grownup along with everyone else on this site! The greatest gift that I have this season and beyond is my freedom from abuse issues.

    I truly wish everybody a very happy new year. May all your dreams come true in 2016!

    Blessed be,


  11. By: Kris Posted: 28th December

    Hi KateE,

    Does anywhere in your new found freedom include apologizing when you are wrong or is that still too hard for you to do because it involves being vulnerable in order to do it which I can completely understand. From what I have experienced with Darlene over the past couple of years is she is the last one who will try and set anyone up for a fall once they have reached the other side of broken and according to your comments you of all people should have known this truth…that is if you are truly free.

    Best to you on your journey because you deserve it but being able to admit to when you are wrong is a huge part of it too. Your comments rubbed me the wrong way. There was a certain air of smugness to them that I found unappealing but I really do hope for freedom in your life. I’m just not quite so sure that you have reached it yet and my wish is that my comments will perhaps make you take a second look at some of the things that you said in your post to use as a learning experience not to put you down in any way because what good would that do any of us. We all have lived through condemnation in our lives and we know what that outcome adds up to!!

    Peace to you,

  12. By: KateE Posted: 27th December

    My first post was lost in moderation. It really doesn’t matter though, as I’ve decided to leave here and move on. “MY” life needs to be lived in the present and not in my past as my past has nothing to offer me. Will my life be perfect, probably not and I am sure I will be hurt by family members again, but life in general is not perfect but it can be really great and I’ll take that anytime. Healing is a journey and I’ve learned so much about myself that I would never had known if my life had been different, less complicated. It showed me how much I do matter and the choices I can make for me to be happy.

  13. By: KateE Posted: 27th December


  14. By: Light Posted: 26th December

    You’re most welcome, Darlene!

  15. By: Hobie Posted: 26th December

    Did my post end up in moderation too?

    I posted a few days ago, but I don’t ever remember what I wrote anymore. The main reason I posted was to get the posts in my email, but now I’m wondering what happened.


  16. By: KateE Posted: 26th December

    Freedom comes from seeing the truth and I have found mine.

  17. By: KateE Posted: 26th December

    Thank you for invalidating my post from yesterday. All the things you preach you yourself do. My message was a personal point for me and how far I’ve come reading all you write here for years, my bad. I have learned that I matter and through this site have learned that it’s about me not them, yet when I wrote a nice message about how far I have come it’s deleted, why, because I am no longer pouring my heart out on here. You don’t want people to heal and get better it’s just a place to vent giving people in the early stages I place to feel protected and validated I get it because it helped me, but I through many avenues have found my voice and made choices to take my power back. So since it is YOUR website and YOU pay for it. I will no longer post here, why, because I don’t need do to this anymore, for I am free. You do talk a double standard and although you may disagree you are also very good at flipping it to make posters who find there way

  18. By: Davina Wolf Posted: 26th December

    The website used to “remember” name and email; now it doesn’t and your message is lost when you press submit unless you remember to fill in the information at the top first.

    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 26th December

      Hi Davina
      I am sorry that your info was not ‘remembered’. I think sometimes the updates to the wordpress theme change things and I have no control over that. I am sorry you lost your post.
      Hugs, Darlene

      Hi KateE
      I did not invalidate your post from yesterday ~ it landed in “moderation” and being Christmas I didn’t have time to check the website. I thought I might take one day off. 🙂 Sorry about that. All of your comments have been published now.
      Hugs, Darlene

  19. By: Merz Posted: 25th December

    I haven’t been welcome in my mother’s house for 9 years. Since the time i walked out when she shouted and pointed her finger at my then 2 yr old son’s face. She has my sister and her 2 children over all the time, even has them stay the night. But to my mother i have always been rebellious and disrespectful so i am not worthy of going to her house. Even when last year my father had a heart attack and was in ICU and had a bypass surgery i was booking a ticket to come and stay at a motel with the children (as my father hasn’t met the 2 youngest) She vibered me and said “Don’t come, its better if he doesn’t see you” I was still trying to come but then when packing i had no more will to go as i was shocked that still after 8 yrs she wasn’t excited to see me and the children as i was to see my father and had put behind me the nerves of seeing her because she had treated me as her personal slave until i left the country at around 30 yrs of age. All I wanted to do was give my dad a hug. He survived and is thank fully still alive. I have offered my parents tickets to come and visit us but they haven’t taken up the offers. its a 3 hr flight from NZ to this part of Australia. I still feel sad and angry every Christmas because as children we had my grandmother and aunties etc. My sister’s children have this. But mine don’t. I thank God because he has put lovely friends around us and for the last 2 Christmases we had them at my husband’s bosses’ and they spoil the children so much. But there is always a part of me that still feels guilty and very empty.

  20. By: Free Posted: 24th December

    Thank you Darlene for this website. I like the way you write.

    Its been around a decade since I went no contact with my parents. The years I was around them, my mother was always was so over the top in *positive enthusiasm* about my children, giving them gifts etc. So I in my ignorance felt that at least she liked them even if she didn’t like me. Little did I know the horrible covert abuse she did to them the *few times* I left them alone with her and my father during emergencies and also when my father was around during the short duration of a visit. The things she said about me and them were vile. She was calculated and sneaky in how she did the verbal, emotional abuse. My daughter and son, when they were older, started telling me how they were treated. My son said he saw my mother as the alpha-mother. My daughter told me how my mother would say very strange things to influence her and then use “code” references in front of me to refer to the previous abuse so as to freshen up the abuse. When I went to use the bathroom (and probably when my dad used the bathroom or went outside to do something during a short visit) and when I was across the yard from my mother or when there was other noise going on she would use that time to say or whisper a bizarre abusive thing. I’m not sure how a child is supposed to deal with a “loving grandmother” who when alone with them, said very strange odd abusive things about me and the child periodically over years. But she had an impact from the shock of it all tearing down my authority… I can’t say details because I don’t want her to have the satisfaction of knowing who wrote this comment if she reads the site. Anyway, if anyone is feeling guilty that they aren’t letting the grandparents see the kids… STOP…. you may have no idea what is going on when you aren’t there even if it is a very short time and someone else is around too.

  21. By: Andria Posted: 24th December


    Thank you for the words of encouragement on Christmas Eve. It gets better for me every year at holiday time. I love what your wrote: “if someone lies to you it doesn’t make you gullible because you believed the lie. It makes them a LIAR.” Love that.

  22. By: rj Posted: 24th December

    I think the lady that used the term Toxic Relationship nailed it….If your children decide to go see them when they are grown. Well they are grown.and expected to be well rounded enough to deal and smart enough to ask any questions.A young one can not do that.If you made a decision to break then let your yes mean yed and no nean no.No looking back itherwise it will come across as you being weak….Your not…Your a Mom…..Those are your children…..

  23. By: Kris Posted: 23rd December


    I don’t like missing out on the opportunity to give to someone who is genuinely trying to help me like Darlene is so thanks for the reminder. Merry Christmas to you too!!

  24. By: Andria Creighton Posted: 23rd December


    I totally understand your comment that “NOTHING was GOOD ENOUGH”. I got the same from my family.


    You said so many true things about Darlene and her posts on her creation EFB. Darlene certainly has “put into words” the interpersonal dynamics that felt bad but could not be ferreted out by ourselves alone. Thank you Darlene!

    Thank you Light for reminding us to be generous to the woman who has given of herself so others may find the freedom that she has found.

  25. By: Light Posted: 23rd December

    I’d like to encourage everyone to consider making a donation to Emerging From Broken. It’s very easy: just click on the yellow “Donate” button in the right hand column on this page. It costs Darlene $250 per month to run this website and what doesn’t get covered she pulls out of her own funds; I think any amount, no matter how small, would be appreciated.

    Darlene is a lifeline for many of us. Her inspiring and supportive entries, as well as her personal responses to many of our comments can make all the difference in the development of a healthier and more fulfilling life, one day at a time. She gives courage where there is fear, comfort where there is sadness, and love where there is loneliness. She’s helped us with boundaries, and for me personally Darlene has put into words many interpersonal dynamics that felt bad but I couldn’t articulate the “why”.

    Thank you Darlene for giving of yourself so freely. You’ve done a great thing by starting and maintaining this blog. I wish for you continued emotional freedom and much love and happiness this holiday season and beyond.

    I’m off to make my donation!

    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone who celebrates the holiday, and if it’s a difficult one (which it can be for many of us) I wish for you peace and strength to get through it.

    Love, Light

    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 24th December

      Dearest Light,
      Thank you so much for your encouragement and endorsement and for all the validation you have given me about what I do here. I am so touched and grateful as well. Thank you for your generous donation and for the other donations you have sent over the years! I hate asking for donations so I rarely get them anymore. Since your post I have received 4 donations for a total of 127.00 ~ I am feeling blessed. Hugs and Merry Christmas.
      love Darlene

      Kris, thank you as well for your lovely words and donation. 🙂

      Andria, Thank you for your encouragement and your words and the donations you have contributed as well!

      To the others that have sent me a donation, thank you!! I don’t always know who they are from if people use a screen name on this blog or a different email to donate so if I miss your name, that would be why.

      Happy Holidays everyone. Remember that they way they treat you is about them. If someone lies to you, it doesn’t make you gullible because you believed the lie, it makes them a LIAR.

      Love, Darlene

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