‘My sweet little chatterley STOPPED TALKING. And it almost killed me.’: Mom provides hope for parents of teens, ‘they won’t stay silent forever’

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“This kid that talked my ever-lovin’ ear off when he was little got to high school and, y’all, if the conversation didn’t dry up.

My sweet little chatterley STOPPED TALKING. And it almost killed me. It really did.

Every time I asked him how his day went, he replied with a stock, ‘Eh,’ or, ‘I don’t know.’ Or his favorite, ‘It was alright.’ No variations. Hard stop.

I longed to pry open the clam shell of his brain and meander around for a while.

I needed to KNOW him. The silence from him was the worst kind of torture for me as a super-involved mom.

I adored him. I wanted to read every one his chapters and underline and highlight and dog-ear the pages.

But he was a closed book.

I tried not to push.

Eventually, on his time, not mine, he dropped me morsels. But mostly he lived in the space between his ears and hung a ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign on his nose.


He is 18 now. A college freshman. Still, for the moment, living at home.

At a season in his life when I assumed he would be soaring happily at warp speed away from me, he has again come back and circled the nest.

At night he wants to talk. Is eager to.

He has all the things to tell me. About classes and E-Sports, new friends, and his new-ish job.

He hugs me and does not pull away.

He lets me kiss the top of his head and bring him a glass of milk. Throw in a PB&J.

The conversations are abundant and plentiful. He makes me laugh. I marvel at his maturity.

He is so good, so amazing, so MY SON that it makes my insides ache.

So to the moms whose kids have pushed them away, who have stopped talking, who are in full drift mode right now… HOLD ON.

The thread of connection has not broken.

They surely are testing how far it will stretch. Of course they are. They have to.

But my friend, that thread will always, ALWAYS, always lead them back home.

No matter how silent they become, they cannot stay silent forever.

They have too many stories inside.

And trust me, they are bursting to tell you.”

Son rests arm around mom's shoulder as they take a selfie at the lake.
Courtesy of Melissa Neeb

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Melissa Neeb from Never Empty Nest and Faith In The Mess. You can follow her journey on Instagram and Facebook. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.

Read more from Melissa here:

Kids With ‘Show Up’ Parents Become ‘Show Ups’ Themselves

Your Teen Will Bring You To Points You Never Imagined — And EVERY One Will Make You Love Them More

‘God saw me. Clutching proof of the unimaginable. My husband was an addict.’: Woman shares God’s role throughout her life

When Raising Teens, Some Nights Will Bring You To Your Knees

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