My Teenage Son Won't Talk to Me

mother and son

Dear Rebbetzin Weinberg,

I have a teenage son who doesn’t like to talk to me. He lives in another city right now. Although, I have worked hard his whole life to have a relationship with him, I haven’t been too successful. He is by nature not much of a talker, but he does talk to others more than to me. I don’t think I am very critical or unpleasant to him, but he knows me well and probably knows most of what I am going to say. He is going through a turbulent time in his life, and I worry about him a lot. I know he thinks I worry too much. The question is should I continue to call him even though I know he doesn’t want to speak to me? Should I just wait for him to call me? I want him to know that I care about him, but am I doing more harm than good by contacting him when he is not very receptive to a relationship with me?


A Mother Who Wants to Do the Right Thing If Only She Knew What It Was

Dear Mother,

It’s easy to see that you want to do the right thing. I think you should continue to call your son; don’t wait for him to call you. The calls don’t have to be often; they could be once a week or once a month, whatever you feel is good. And don’t expect him to talk much. The purpose of the call is just to let him know that you are there and you care for him. Don’t say you are worried about him. Just say, “I love you. I hope everything is going well for you.” In this way, you are giving him his space and showing him that you respect his privacy. You are also leaving the lines open and letting him know that you would like so much to have a relationship with him.

When we give birth to a child, no matter how far away the child is, there is always a bond. And when we can’t get close to our children, we feel a small hole in the heart. It is there and nothing but that relationship can heal it. May Hakadosh Baruch Hu (G-d) erase your pain and give you the bracha (blessing) of your son seeing the “light.”

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