Our adult daughter has disowned us and moved in with her boyfriend’s family, leaving behind unopened gifts and treasured childhood photos and keepsakes. What about the holidays? Should we send her a gift?

I greatly empathize with your situation. It is one of the MOST difficult to navigate as a parent. Here is what I think you should do. Tell yourself that you are, and have been, an amazing parent. Acknowledge that your daughter is going down a road that you would not choose for her, but given the fact that she is an adult, this is her choice. As to sending her a gift, if you can send something that is heart-centered, meaning you are giving it because deep down you want her to have something from you without any hope or desire for something in return, then I would send a holiday gift. The season is about giving–and in sending her a gift, you are modeling what loved ones do at this special time of the year. Here is difficult part: you should be prepared for her returning the gift or not opening it, and if you can handle this, then go ahead. Since she has left behind unopened gifts and keepsakes, as you note, it is likely that she may not open it again. Genuine giving comes from the heart, and this is all you can do. If you choose not to send a gift, that is quite all right as well, because this is what your heart is telling you deep inside too. I would not send a gift if you are doing so to attempt to get her back, or show her parents that you are still important too. Your daughter will quickly discern your motivation — through her intuitive sense. So again, if you deep down strongly feel that you would like to send a gift because of the spirit of the (...continue reading)