Hi, so glad to find this group! I have been a single parent most of my kid's lives. I was very active and they were my whole world after the divorce. I also worked and went to college. I tried dating and almost remarried and now I feel guilty and deeply sad about the time wasted during their childhood.
Fast-forward and I have multiple chronic diseases along with cPTSD, major depressive disorder, and social anxiety. After the breakup, which resulted from my health being a deal breaker, we moved into a two bedroom apartment near all the amenities my kids need to be happy. I, however feel very sad and lonely.
My teen daughters don't want to have family time. I try really hard and it usually ends with them arguing with their 11 year old brother and each stomping off to their rooms. I sleep in the converted dining room. The table is in the living space. I lived this way most of their lives, without personal space or a door. It is what I can afford and I am thankful. I'm used to the open space plan. I just feel like I'm always available, and yet the kids really dont need me anymore. In fact the girls don't come out but to eat something or go to their activities.
I feel like my value lies in keeping the bills paid and the fridge stocked and coordinating all the appointments and activities. My health requires me to use my time and energy very carefully.
As I've gotten sicker and realized I'm not going to get better and my kids will leave home, I feel such grief and loss. Like empty nest has come early..does that make any sense? I'm proud of them and want them to fly, but I hurt because I can't keep up now. This wasn't supposed to happen.
I know these little tiffs and teens needing space is pretty normal. I am not transitioning very well. I was supposed to have graduated college, and keep busy working my career. That was the plan to defeat the loneliness and get me through. I have pretty severe memory loss and damage.
Then when I met my ex fiance and dated for a long time, he knew my health and later after I gave up everything to move into our house he changed his mind and just snapped. We lost nearly everything to start over but it was better than the unexpected violence from him. So I had thought I was supposed to be married and work. Not so.
All I have left is all I really wanted...my kids. And I don't feel like the best mom anymore. There is so much I wanted to give and cant. And what I have is all I can give and they are more interested in their own lives.
Soon they will be gone and I don't know how to prepare myself or make the most of the time I have when I have so many limitations. They are so smart and often I am disappointed because they take advantage of my slowness or memory.
I still have to discipline by allowing them to experience consequences.
When I get down about all this it sets off my depression and really spikes the suicidal ideation I struggle with at times. I used to be able to combat it by saying my kids need me or want me..it's getting harder to believe that.
Im hanging on for dear life to the simple things like, they need me to keep the roof over their head and groceries. They need me to drive when I am able. They need a planner and coordinator. And I think I'm terrified of being abandoned when I'm no longer useful. Because it's happened so many times in my life.