Newsletter Archive

This is the archive of featured newsletter articles, with the newest at the top.

Browse by topic using the categories to the right (or at the bottom of the page if you’re on your phone).

Strategy

What to Do, When You Don’t Know What to Do

If you’ve been estranged from your adult child(ren) for any length of time, you’ve probably experienced that uncomfortable feeling of not knowing what to do next. As a parent, your heart is breaking. And your brain is constantly picking at the problem in the background (when it’s not doing that in the foreground). Whenever there’s

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Basics

Knowing vs. Doing

We’ve all been there. We know that something bad will happen between ourselves and another person if we say or do a particular thing. But for some reason, we do it anyway. We end up suffering not only the consequences of our behavior, but also regret. If we knew better, why didn’t we do better?

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Basics

What Are You Working On?

Many Reconnection Club members are working on letters of apology to their estranged adult children. They’ve decided that an apology is appropriate, but in thinking about it, they bump into the fact that it’s not always easy to find exactly the right words. That’s why some of our members post draft apologies in our forums.

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Communication

Actions Speak Louder Than Words with Estranged Adult Children

In last month’s newsletter, I urged you not to be in a rush to apologize to your estranged adult child. This month’s topic builds on that idea, and provides a simple yet powerful blueprint for rejected parents. If you’ve read my book, Reconnecting With Your Estranged Adult Child, you may remember the Rule of Ten.

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Apologizing

Don’t Be in a Hurry to Apologize to an Estranged Adult Child

One of the most popular things for parents to post in our private Reconnection Club forums is a draft of their apology letter to an estranged adult child. And while I love that our community is wise and supportive enough to offer valuable feedback on these important efforts, there’s a mistaken emphasis on apologizing as

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Causes of estrangement

Sibling Rivalry and Parent-Child Estrangement

Sibling rivalry can play a role in parent-adult child estrangement. When children are growing up, tension between siblings sometimes becomes chronic. In addition to differences in temperament, there may be ongoing concerns about favoritism or perceptions of scarcity in parental attention or affection. Once a sibling relationship has become tense, parents may have to intervene

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Contact

What Does a No-Contact Request Sound Like?

How can you tell if your estranged adult child wants no contact? The answer is not always clear. Some parents receive specific requests such as, “Please don’t call, text, email or come to my home or workplace.” But many are left with either statements they can’t decipher, or no guidance at all. In this article,

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Basics

Taking Control of the Estrangement from Your Adult Child

One of the worst things about being estranged from your adult child(ren), besides the terrifying uncertainty of the outcome, is feeling like you have no control over the situation. You text your child, but she doesn’t text back. You issue invitations, and there’s no response.  All contact seems to be on your child’s terms, not

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Basics

Should Parents Present a United Front?

Spouses aren’t always on the same page about what to do when their adult children become estranged. Should you take responsibility for your child’s decision? Or threaten to cut him out of your will? Should you apologize for past mistakes that may have contributed to the estrangement? Or stop all communication until she comes around?

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