Episode 9: How to Stay Positive When You’re Estranged

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It’s incredibly sad and distressing to be estranged from your adult child or children. Yet a positive attitude can make life more manageable, no matter what’s going on. Being more positive is good for both mental and physical health. But adopting such an attitude is so much easier said than done, when you’re estranged from your …

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Episode 8: Don’t Take the Blame, Do Take Responsibility

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Taking responsibility is not the same as accepting blame. Blame is punitive, destructive, and a dead end. Responsibility, on the other hand, is constructive. Responsibility says, “I’ll take on this challenging task!” Taking responsibility for your relationship with your estranged adult child is an intentional act that puts you in the driver’s seat. If you …

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Episode 6: How to Make Your Child WANT to Talk to You

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While you can’t force your child to communicate with you, there are skills you can employ the next time you do have contact that will help them want to talk to you. This episode outlines three things to get good at if you want to become your child’s (or anyone else’s) favorite confidant. If you …

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Episode 5: The 4 Horsemen of the Apology

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A good apology is the ultimate relationship repair tool, and a must for anyone estranged against their wishes. Still, many parents are hesitant to embrace the idea of apologizing to their estranged adult children. I’ve thought a lot about why this is, and have come up with what I call the “Four Horsemen of the …

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Episode 3: Avoid These 3 Mistakes When Trying to Reconnect with Your Adult Child

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Working your way back to an adult child when they’ve cut off contact is a time-consuming process. This is maddening, when all you want to do is to reconcile and reconnect as quickly as possible. But haste makes waste, because being in a hurry almost always means making mistakes. This is true for any important …

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Episode 2: Estrangement is an Ambiguous Loss

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Estrangement from an adult child is what author Pauline Boss called an “ambiguous loss.” She wrote a book by that name in 1999, and although she didn’t talk specifically about estrangement, the circumstance definitely qualifies as similar to a familiar member being missing in action, or having a disease like Alzheimer’s, in which case they’re …

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Episode 1: Why Time is Your Friend

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Most estranged parents feel like time is a thief, stealing opportunities and happiness while they’re estranged from an adult child. This makes parents feel a bit desperate, so they reach out in ineffectual ways. But the reality is, you can only do so much. You can’t push the river. Fortunately, in addition to be a …

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