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I Feel as if My Parents Have Lost Interest in Me

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I deal with other issues that I am well aware of, such as major social anxiety, but I have not been able to go to a therapist or get it treated before. Albeit, my family moves every 4 years, so I don’t have any close physical connections other than the connections with my family. Recently, I have tried to separate myself from my computer more so and spend more time with my family, because I know I will be moving away eventually. I graduated this year and have been unable to find a job because of the COVID-19 outbreak, but quite honestly, I have been feeling rather mentally healthy because of the quarantine and the secluded nature of my days.
Being very close to my family (except my father, he is very emotionally abusive and targets me the worst in the family), I’ve been wanting to talk to my mom more and my brothers. But every time and every day I attempt to speak with her or my little brothers, they are annoyed or disinterested and ask me to leave or leave themselves. Before I was 18, my mother was rather playful with me and we had a good connection, she was like my best friend and my string onto sanity after intense social anxiety breakdowns every hour within the school. Though, now I feel like she is trying to distance herself from me or avoid conversation, or just love me much less. I just want to talk about anything, nothing complicated or controversial, but she’s so tired of me. I don’t think she’s tired overall, though, because she is very different from my brothers. I just wish she could show me the same enthusiasm she shows my brothers. Now that she’s disinterested in me, I feel like I’ve lost the last physical person in my life who would care if I were to pass away.

I have online friends who I really appreciate and have helped me so much. It’s much easier for me to talk and express myself online than in person. I understand she probably wants me to move out, but I can’t with the pandemic happening. I just turned 18 in June after graduating online, but it still deeply hurts to feel rejected by the person I still love the most. This started happening at the beginning of June. (From the USA)

I Feel as if My Parents Have Lost Interest in Me

Answered by on -

A.

While I am saddened by the fact you feel this disconnect from your family there are a few things that make sense about it. Your father’s emotional abuse, combined with you being targeted and the chronic moving all contribute to the disconnect in the family. Your father’s abuse can cause the family to splinter in this way, and this may be leaving you to feel disconnected as well.

My encouragement is to do two things and develop as much of a relationship with your siblings and mother as possible while broadening your social network outside the home. Your friends and online community are a great place to star, but I would also look for connecting with like-minded individuals toward learning something new. Perhaps classes, enrollment in a university, independent classes in music, painting, writing, or drawing may help you engage with others as you are learning something new. This is the best way to balance your desire to want more from your family, learn something new while growing the network of people you can connect with.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

I Feel as if My Parents Have Lost Interest in Me

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Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: http://www.dare2behappy.com/. He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2020). I Feel as if My Parents Have Lost Interest in Me. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 4, 2020, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2020/08/21/i-feel-as-if-my-parents-have-lost-interest-in-me/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 20 Aug 2020 (Originally: 21 Aug 2020)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 20 Aug 2020
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.