Help! My son has moved to his Dads…my heart is breaking

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This topic contains 1 reply, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  anita 8 months, 1 week ago.

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    I am completely lost and don’t know what to do. My 12 year old son announced he wanted to go and live with his dad and has gone for two weeks holidays but with the full intention of not coming back. Heart is breaking! I can’t even function.
    He got punished for pushing and got a phone ban, he wasn’t happy so he asked to go. After he calmed down he said he didn’t. But a few days later when I sat him down and talked calmly he admitted he still did and is already away.
    We don’t have a volatile relationship, yes there is shouting at times and I called him a spoilt brat. He has two little bro’s who stop him doing certain things since they have to do stuff too. We have rules about times he’s allowed out until, screen time, homework, chores etc. With his dad and SM however he is an only child and will be run about after and go wherever he wants (possibly not the reason tho). He only said he felt sad and wanted to see if he still felt sad at his dads.
    He’s had a little trouble with friends at school, hates his appearance, thinks he’s the worst in his football team.
    He does get in trouble a bit at home, usually for pushing boundaries or similar. Gets lots of warnings and then screen ban.
    He had a meltdown back at Easter, and said he didn’t want to see his dad again but I have encouraged and encouraged him to go and keep in touch. So he’s only seen his dad for an hour a week since then and said he never wants to sleep over there again. And now has upped and moved there. His dad has an involvement in a sport that I cannot get him to regularly and his dad can and will take him whenever he wants.
    Me and his SD are lost and heartbroken. His little bro’s are just wandering around the house looking for him. As is the dog.
    And all my friends just say, oh don’t worry he’ll be back. But I know him and he won’t.
    He eventually called me last night and he sounded happy but when he said goodbye I thought he sounded sad. But he could’ve just been distracted or watching TV.
    He is coming for a visit tomorrow and staying over but when he leaves again it will be absolute torture and acting normal for two whole days around him will just be so hard.

    I’m really not sure how to get up and on with life without him. Our house feels empty and quiet. And I miss him so much.



    Dear Mm:

    I know that pain that you are feeling. I believe I do. And I do hope you feel better soon.

    Here is my input: If by “yes there is shouting at times and I called him a spoilt brat” you meant that you shouted at your son, that is not a good thing. Setting fair boundaries and consequences for his actions- yes, but shouting is abusive, especially shouting at children. I hope that doesn’t happen again. And that calling him a “spoilt brat”, or any such disrespectful term doesn’t happen again as well.

    I suggest that you do the very best you can to appear okay when he visits you at your home. It is very important, for a parent to not appear miserable in the presence of a child, because a child automatically feels guilty for a miserable parent, assuming responsibility. Such guilt makes a child mentally unwell.

    And so, if it takes pretending to feel okay, do a good job pretending.

    If you act as if you feel okay during his visit and otherwise when communicating with your son, he will feel free to express to you how he truly feels and it will therefore be easier for you to understand him. You will be able to choose better for his well being when you understand him better.

    I hope you post again before or after the visit with an update.


    • This reply was modified 8 months, 1 week ago by  anita.
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