Episode 16: Sharing Important News with Your Estranged Adult Child

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One of the most common questions we get inside the Reconnection Club is whether and when to initiate contact with an estranged adult child about important news. At some point, if you’re estranged long enough, something will come up that will make you wonder, “Is it okay to contact my child about this?” It might …

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Episode 15: Do You Need an Estrangement Specialist for Therapy?

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As the rejected parent of an estranged adult child, you might seek out an estrangement specialist for therapy. You want someone with a certain amount of compassion for what you’re going through – which would probably be someone who’s been there. Right? Apart from your podcast host, Tina Gilbertson, most professionals who specialize in estrangement …

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Episode 14: Is Your Child’s Behavior Out of Character?

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You know your child so well. Or at least, you used to. When it comes to behavior from your adult child that surprises you, what seems “out of character” may actually be an adult child expressing an essential part of who she is. How you respond to out-of-character behavior will probably have some impact on …

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Episode 13: Holiday Survival Guide

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For parents estranged from adult children, it’s not easy getting through the holidays. This episode contains six different survival tips to help see you through a potentially difficult time of year. You can’t choose whether the holidays come around, or whether your child decides to reconnect in time for you to celebrate together. But you …

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Episode 12: Why Apologize If You’re Not Guilty?

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Like everyone else, you made your share of mistakes in parenting. But you weren’t so horrible that you deserve to be treated like a criminal. Although child abuse is a cause of many estrangements, you didn’t necessarily abuse your child. So why won’t your adult child cut you some slack? Why is she demanding that …

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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 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 4: Is My Child on a Power Trip?

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This episode was inspired by this post in the Community forums inside the Reconnection Club: “Sometimes I wonder if my daughter is getting some kind of ‘cheap thrill’ at my expense. I keep contacting her but she doesn’t contact me. Yet she throws me a ‘crumb’ in response. She knows I want to see her, …

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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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The Reconnection Club Podcast

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Listen to the show that offers compassion, clarity and personal development tips for parents estranged from their adult children In each episode, psychotherapist Tina Gilbertson talks about practical tools for melting the ice, as well as how to cope when nothing seems to be working. Tina looks at the research and dispels myths about estrangement. …

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