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Is this odd? Or is it me?
October 15, 2005
12:42 pm
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cpt1212
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My sister is raising 2 boys by herself (I actually provide everything the kids need financially and emotionally it is like my sister is the third teenager in the house, he is 36) My oldest nephew is 16 and my sister lets him make a lot of decisions but what really bothers me is that he sleeps with her in her bed . . .everynight. I know there isn't any abuse, but still it just seems so inappropriate. Any thoughts?

October 15, 2005
12:45 pm
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cpt1212
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...and emotionally it is like my sister is the third teenager in the house, he is 36... I meant SHE it this sentence!

October 15, 2005
12:47 pm
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lessthanalive
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my ex used to sleep in his moms bed till he was 20. when i would stay at her house he would want me to sleep in the bed with her too and i allways felt there was something horribly wrong with all of that. kinda freaked me out ya know? i think when boys are raised with a single mother who gives them alot of "fatherly" duties, they develope unhealthy attachments to the mom. some one has a post that i think may help. hang on let me go figure out what it's called...

October 15, 2005
12:49 pm
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lessthanalive
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ok im back... the thread is "Parentified children...very interesting" go read it. i think it applies.

October 15, 2005
12:54 pm
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cpt1212
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Yes, that definately applies!

October 15, 2005
12:57 pm
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lessthanalive
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i have no clue how you would ever approach anyone in this situation though. that would be weird. especially if its family...good luck and i feel for ya....

October 15, 2005
1:03 pm
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addicts wife
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My Js cousin has a son who is about 4. He has always slept in the bed with his parents, nd when we saw them all this summer, I couldnt help but notice that this child seems to be far behind developmentally. I thougfht he was a huge 2 year old. His speech is very baby-like. Where One of my best friends daughter s who just turned four is Amazing. The way she speaks and acts and plays, You'd think she was in 1st grade.
Im not sure if the nephew is this way becasue he never slept in his own room, or not, but I have a feeling that It could be stunting his developmental growth. I realize all children are different and its somewht unfair to compare them.. but He just seemed odd, and it really "got to" me.
I'll also check out that thread!!
~AW

October 15, 2005
1:09 pm
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cpt1212
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I have brought it up to both of them but they just blow it off and comment that I am the one with the problem.

October 15, 2005
8:14 pm
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StronginHim77
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A child should be encouraged from infancy to sleep SAFELY in their own bed. This develops their confidence in a SAFE world. If a single parent feels the need to have one of their children sleep with them OCCASIONALLY (and I am talking about a toddler or very young child, such as when the child is sick), that is not a big deal. But establishing this as a pattern, or continuing it into their teen years, is definitely NOT healthy, NOT normal and would have psychiatrists/psychologists pushing the alarm button. I have known of one case in which a very concerned psychologist had to report a grown father to insisted on sleeping with his 10 and 7 year old children. It was highly detrimental to the children. It does not always mean that abuse is taking place, but it is not emotionally healthy for the child. It can cause arrestment in many, normal areas of emotional development and necessary independence from the parent(s). You might need to report this to Child Welfare Services in your State and get it investigated.

October 16, 2005
4:46 pm
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garfield9547
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The Little Prince
Mother-Son Emotional Incest & Codependence: Part 1
Martyn Carruthers 1998,2005

Are you involved with men who:
act like children ... or like tyrants ... or both?
forever try to appear special?
cannot maintain a mature partnership?
do not care if they damage other people's relationships?
are narcissist - they demand attention or leave?
obsess about their mothers?
As you read this, you may realize that these signs of mother-bonded men signal endless suffering for people involved with them.

Children suffer if parents avoid parental responsibilities, and the consequences may be severe. Children who are entangled with their parents often show codependence and obsessions throughout their lives. As adults, they often enmesh their own children. Soulwork systemic coaching can help these people.

Feedback I was married to a "mother's boy" for 12 years. I don't see him anymore but it still hurts and I felt betrayed. I felt like I had a long affair with a married man. Miami

A family suffers if a parent is immature or irresponsible. A parent may complain that the other acts like a child, or like a tyrant, or that the other is absent or dissociated. Entangled people often blame their parents, complain about their partners and criticize their children without recognizing their own role in their behavior.

Feedback My husband was more like a child than a man. He avoided decisions and only wanted to play ... I liked his childishness until we had a real child, but he resented our baby son ... After three bad years I divorced him, but I felt like I abandoned my first child. After Soulwork the pain was gone ... I am free. WL, Hawaii, USA

Are you entangled with a man who is entangled with his mother?

Cross-generational family entanglements are common, especially if one or both parents:

were missing, dysfunctional or dead
were irresponsible, childish or could not provide mature guidance
were addicted, obsessed, brain damaged or insane
were victimized, displaced or controlled by other family members
continually used substitutes for parenting (e.g. television, babysitters, etc)
Emotional incest between fathers and daughters is also common - see Daddy's Little Princess. Toxic parenting is also described at Prevent Learning Disabilities and Parental Alienation. For more on family entanglements see Emotional Incest.

My boyfriend of 8 years is a 42 year old child. All I hear is that he doesn't want to disappoint his mother. Until recently he lived with his parents. He never does chores around the house. He is just there. He telephones his mother all the time. He phones her when he leaves, when he arrives and in between. He can't make a commitment. He comes and goes as he pleases. He lives with me or goes home. He gets upset if I treat him like an adult. KT North Carolina

The Little Prince
In a strange, faraway country, each boy believes that his mother is a virgin, and each mother believes that her son is God.

Our story begins with a pregnant mother. While pregnant, Mother likely enjoyed her femininity and the attention of her family. When Baby is born, attention often shifts from Mother to Baby. Mother may feel abandoned, perhaps showing postpartum depression. Many mothers regain family attention, approval and respect, by becoming a Super-Mom.

The husband of a Super-Mom may feel rejected, particularly if he depends upon his wife to provide meaning for his life. He may feel that a a boy baby is a rival. He may withdraw from his wife’s requests for intimacy, support or responsibility. He may become depressed and/or have intimate affairs.

A Super-Mom sees her Son as special. Mother may dream that Son will make a special contribution to the world that Mother cannot or will not make. Mother's expectations help balance her emptiness. For Mother to feel special, Son has to be very special - or risk losing Mother's love.

Mother may sacrifice her life for her Son. (Such sacrifice is expected in many cultures. The family may applaud this holiness, and call Mother a saint). Son may attack anybody who does not recognize Mother's saintliness - including his Father.

Together Mother and Son may form an emotionally codependent couple. A threat for codependent partners is that one partner find independent happiness by growing up ...

My ex-boyfriend is 48 yrs old and he husbands his mother. He never married and had few relationships with women. He lives with his mom and has not worked for 15 yrs. He cannot show affection and says he has castration anxiety. He is passive aggressive and a recluse. His only friend is on the computer. His father left them when he was 2 yrs old. I am not his friend anymore - I will not stand for emotional neglect or abuse. He is an angry man. It seems that parts of him are missing. He cannot connect emotionally. I knew something was very wrong. I had to leave him for my own sanity. Soulwork got me over all this. MD, Philadelphia

Freud, Oedipus and the Little Prince
If a lonely Mother sees her son as special, Mother can renew her sense of life. Mother rewards Son for his specialness, and Son rewards Mother by becoming special. Instead of enjoying childhood, Son may develop adult interests and obsessions; perhaps fulfilling an immature Father’s fantasies of "My Son is my rival". A Son striving to fulfill Mother's wishes may become Mother's emotional partner.

Freud wrote that every boy has an Oedipus Complex that affects his life. He claimed that every boy represses his sexual desire for his mother and his jealousy toward his father. Freud wrote that a boy with an Oedipus Complex experiences emotional conflicts. This may be Freud's autobiography, or a facet of Central European culture at Freud's time. We only find these conflicts in families where mothers are confused between Sons and Lovers.

Consequences for Mother-Bonded Sons
If people do not appreciate Son’s specialness, Son may attack (become a bully) or retreat (become a nerd). Son fears not being special enough and dreads Mother's rejection. Son may become a model good boy to please Mother - or he may rebel against Mother to please Father - perhaps becoming delinquent. If he swings between these extremes - he may be diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

The consequences of emotional incest include addictions, schizophrenia and suicide. The consequences also include intellectual men who cannot maintain a happy partnership, and holy men who reject partnership to search for (spiritual) Fatherhood or oblivion. The consequences also include the burned-out shells of real boys who gave up - and lost themselves to mediocrity or drugs.

Soulwork offers effective solutions for emotional incest, but to stop being special may be too high a price for a normal life. Codependent adults often perceive normal people as boring.

The more Mother needs a special child-man - the less space for a real boy. During adolescence, as normal young men prepare for partnership and parenthood, a Little Prince may be unable to consider a committed adult relationship. (Mother-bonded sons may delay adolescence - sometimes by decades.) Soulwork can help people dissolve toxic beliefs such as ...

Super-Bonded: "YES - I will be the special child-man that Mother needs!"
Lost Identity: "NO - I will withdraw, dissociate or run away!"
Identification: "I cannot be me - I identify with another family member!"
Simple Conflict: "Sometimes I withdraw - sometimes I am Mother's child-man!"
Identity Conflict: “Sometimes I am Father and sometimes I am Son!”
Relationship Bonds: "To remain alive and relatively sane I must believe that ..."
What happens to Super-Mom?
She may be called a family saint - venerated for her sacrifice, especially by her son. After her death, her son may or may not find emotional freedom.
If her son finds a partner, she may suffer a crisis of rejection and / or try to sabotage his partnership.
If her son leaves, she may emotionally adopt a younger man (perhaps as a lover) and/or withdraw into depression.
She may blame her parents, neighbors and helping professionals for her problems
Soulwork systemic coaching can help women dissolve relationship bonds and gain independent happiness and their own sense of life.

From http://www.soulwork.net

Garfield

October 17, 2005
12:55 am
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cpt1212
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Thank you Garfield, and everyone who posted, this is very interesting. I am not sure what I should do or what I can do if anything about this. My present tactic has been to encourage his interests and independence and to encourage him to spend time with friends (he spends a lot of time alone and at home)

October 17, 2005
3:48 pm
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kathygy
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Why are you supporting your sister's children? Does she work at all?

You might insist that your sister and her son go to therapy if they can't or won't stop sleeping in the same bed. You sister doesn't seem to realize how serious this is.

October 18, 2005
12:11 am
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cpt1212
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Kathygy, both my nephews are in counseling--I pay for it. My sister is not. You are correct, she doesn't see a problem with this at all, in fact she encourages it and I think sometimes he sleeps there out of guilt. I financially support my nephews b/c my sister does not. She works a minimum wage job 32hrs a week and babysits after school. She pays her own bills, I rarely asisst with that anymore, but any money she has left over is not wisely spent and certainly not on the children. I have tried in the past to back off so that she is forced to provide for their needs, but she doesn't. She will let them go without winter coats and shoes much too small for example. Also, I want them to have more than what they "need". I want them to be able to participate in sports and music lessons and field trips. My approach may not be the best, but I am not going to let them suffer b/c they were born to selfish, immature parents.

October 18, 2005
3:02 am
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lessthanalive
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i know its an extreem and maybe im out of line but have you thought of telling your sister to get her crap together and letting her move out and you taking the kids. your supporting them anyways and you obviously love them and care about their best intrests. just a thought.

October 18, 2005
8:09 am
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shyshy
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Maybe your sister is afraid to sleep alone?

when my ex husband moved out I had a really hard time with that. I got used to it though and never had my kids sleep with me because I knew that would cause them some emotional damage.

Your sister definitely has some issues.

October 18, 2005
8:30 am
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SUSIE BABY
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as a mother of a boy,now 15,my son slept with me until he was 12.WHY you ask? his father allowed him in our bed as a baby,when i moved out,he was afraid to sleep alone. i got him a dog for his 12th birthday,roxeanne gave him the comfort he needed to stay in his own bed. i relize alot of women "replace" their spouse with their son's,but this is not alway's the case. not everything 'OUT" of the ordinary is linked to some kind of abuse,as long as the mother isn't going down this road. when you allow a baby in bed,it's very hard to get them to sleep on their own. the one girl who replyed her boyfriend wanted her to sleep with him and his mother,THERE'S SOMETHING WRONG HERE. we have to learn what the diffrence is between the case's. have you spoken to her about it?? is there limited space?? good luck,susan

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