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My parents

Seo Alvin

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Yesterday, my parents argued for quite a long time about my dad not being able to make decisions lately. Unfortunately, I had to admit that my mom has been making all decisions by herself without my dad's opinion. Since my dad is aware of that, he started to make suggestions rather that decisions. He's been asking mom "Shall we do this?", "Shall we do that?" and so on rather than "Let's do this" or something like that. Yesterday, my little brother wanted to go to school festival that he wasn't able attend for the past few years. I didn't wanted to attend that festival, although I could meet my old friends there. He asked for permission. However, my mom rejected and told him to stay home. My brother cried a lot. He called that for permission instead. That was the time I had to leave for my extra class. After the lesson, I received a call from my mom. She was furious. She thought I persuaded him to attend the festival. My parents came home immediately from work. I didn't know until then that dad also wanted to attend the festival. However, he couldn't make decision on his own because of mom. That day, dad was very furious and he had no choice but to yell at mom about his feelings. Abovementioned, they argued for quite a long time. After that, mom left home without any words. She didn't pack any luggage. I tried to contact her and told her to come back home. However, she won't. Even dad called her, but she still won't return. It's been a day she hasn't returned yet.

Now that you know my story, I need a solution or a suggestion at least. I need your help. Without mom, I feel like the house is empty. Please help me out. Thank you for attention.


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Hello, Seo, welcome!

I'm sorry you're going through such difficult time :( . It's good that you're reaching out and communicating about what's going on and how it makes you feel. If it feels at least a bit helpful / relieving, I hope you'll stay in contact and will share your concerns and news.

I'm afraid you won't like my point of view. But it's not based on my subjective feelings or personal values but on what I know psychologists usually (if not always) say / advise to children (even grown-up children): It's not your role to interfere in your parents' relationship. It's natural that you wish (even feel the need) to help, but what they do will always be their decision (and based on many things you even don't know about), not a result of your efforts. If you don't accept this fact, you'll be probably blaming yourself for "not doing enough to improve the situation" - and that would be much worse that "just" being sad that they don't get along well, fight, and even break up for some time.

None of us (including you and your dad) can know why your mom made that decision, how she feels nor when and how she'll change her mind. It doesn't seem probable that just the situation you described was "The reason" - it was probably "the last drop that spilled the cup". Or it was a trigger for something she was hiding inside for a long time. To leave one's kids is a huge decision and... subjectively, I don't consider it very probable that she would decide never to return. That's why I imagine / suppose she just needs some time for her own, to "chill out", to think things through, ... Perhaps she's punishing her husband by this, who knows (but she's certainly not purposely punishing you!).

In any case, don't panic and try not to think that you need to come up with a solution. Give her some time and try to focus on some things you can do to make your home better - I mean help your dad with some of the work mom use to do at home etc., try to be there for your brother and dad, so that you all feel some togetherness, support each other emotionally in these difficult times. For instance, your brother might suffer from some irrational feeling of guilt - that mom is gone "because of him" - you may help him to overcome it. And your dad feels upset and alone and perhaps even ashamed in front of you, so you may show him you love him more that usually. 

May I ask you what precisely your mom said to you and your dad on the phone? Did she say why she won't come back? And do you know where she is?

It's possible that she might need some psychological help / counselling. Is it available where you live? Would your parents have the possibility to go to marriage counselling?

Are you in contact with some of her close family (her parents, sisters or brothers)? If yes, perhaps some of them will be able to get in contact with her and help her to process the problems she experiences and then persuade her to come back home. (?)

Personally, I would give her a few days and then think of something to do. But it's not your role; the conflict and the problems are between your parents, it's their role to work it out.

I'm also curious how old you are - if you don't mind revealing it. ;) 

Take care and... the best of luck to you - so that mom returns soon and will work on amelioration of the relationship with your dad...


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@Seo Alvin - you didn't say how old you are but my advice in these situations is to be as positive as you can be w all those in your family AND look down the road to the day where you are able to live independently of them.  

My parents had a poor relationship and it negatively affected me.  Thankfully there was no drinking & no violence but it was an emotional wasteland.  

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