I just treated my 29-year-old son to a weekend away together. We had a great time but on the hours-long drive home he talked about how he feels like the world is headed toward disaster, our country is falling apart, he’s lonely and resigned to never finding a partner, he’s not feeling valued at work. He then confessed he has no confidence. He has always struggled with feeling low and pessimistic and having a lot of anxiety. He got really down.
We had some good heart-to-heart discussions but he doesn’t seem to have a plan for climbing out of any of this rut. He says he thinks therapy is a waste of money. I’m left feeling sad and somehow responsible because he had a less-than-ideal childhood. His father is emotionally abusive and we divorced when he was 15. He has since mostly lived with his father and they feed each other’s outlook on life (his dad’s is similar). He still lives there and feels bad about that, too, at his age.
There was too much conflict and yelling and I was both a good and bad mom. I’m sad for him and I feel guilty and regretful. Instead of reflecting on our nice weekend, I’m crying and feeling terrible and can’t seem to get clear on what I’m feeling and how to be the best mom now. Talk to him? Apologize for the damaging parts of his childhood? Just keep loving him and letting him figure things out? He’s an adult but also my child.