I'm Honey!

As a woman who has lived through many passages and learned through my larger than life experiences (positive and negative), I’ve discovered how to take a big empowering bite out of life.

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My Journey Through Gaslighting, Estrangement, and the Unexpected Gift of Surrender

Honey Good answering questions from Ask Honey about feeling lonely and estrangement and handling a friendship breakup

Once you understand what gaslighting is, you’re more likely to stand up for yourself and surrender to peace.

Gaslighting, Estrangement, and Surrender

This story is written for the tens of thousands of good mothers, grandmothers, grandchildren, and all the other women who have been gaslighted by another person.

Gaslighting Another Person is a Travesty

Gaslighting is when someone manipulates you into believing something that isn’t true. Gaslighting can manipulate others who know you to believe something about you that is false. It is a form of emotional abuse where a person attempts and often succeeds in distorting the reality of the other person(s) to gain control.

The act of gaslighting is defined by the American Psychological Association as follows: “To manipulate another person into doubting their perceptions, experiences, or understanding of events.” It can induce mental illness.

“There are no accidents. The only accident is when a woman does not take hold of a conversation that might help her and act!” — Honey Good

The word, gaslight was introduced in the 1938 play Gas Light and later made into a film, where it became one word. The movie is a classic. The word not only appears in pop culture but also psychology.

Until last week, I did not know the definition of gaslighting. It originated in the pop culture scene in the 2010s and was Merriam-Webster’s word of the year in 2022.

I Want to Write About Estrangement Through the Lens of Gaslighting Because…

There are thousands of strong mothers and grandmothers and their grandchildren who are being gaslighted; as well as other women experiencing other circumstances.

Image of a graphic with a "watch video" icon with Honey Good in the background with a pensive look, as she ponders surrendering through estrangement and gaslighting

Click the image to watch a short video on YouTube.

A Personal Epiphany

Last week, as I was sitting in my hairdresser, Colette’s chair, I told her a personal story. We have been together a long time, and she is my therapeutic shrink in disguise! After I explained my dilemma, she looked at me and said, “You have been gaslighted big time.”

I asked, “What is gaslighting?” After explaining the definition, I fully understood. I had allowed myself to be a victim of gaslighting. And, so have most of my grandchildren. I felt a wave of anger and sadness.

The Unsung Heroes: Hairdressers and Manicurists

Honey Good answering Ask Honey questions of safe travel after 50

You can only control what you can control, it’s up to you to know what that is.

I believe, tongue in cheek, that our manicurists and hairdressers are the unsung heroes of emotional therapy! And, they offer a more affordable alternative to psychologists or psychiatrists, and often, their advice is more insightful! Why? Because a genuine conversation between two women can sometimes trump the knowledge gained from textbooks.

This is just my perspective, not a critique of any profession. In my case, my hairdresser, Colette at Salon Duo was accurate. And, by the way, she is admired by all as a great hairdresser.

“Sweet mothers, grandmothers, and other women in toxic relationships—Surrender to Bloom.” Honey Good

This conversation took place a week ago. The seriousness of my seven-year experience is plaguing me.

I ask myself, “How did I allow this to happen? How could I allow myself to be put into this position? Why didn’t I roar back when this began over seven years ago? How could I allow anyone to demean my character and hurt my grandchildren? Why was I a pushover?”

I knew my answer. As a mother and a grandmother, I wanted peace at all costs. I came from love. I always try to take the high road.

How to Say Goodbye to an Estranged Child

Coming from Kindness Does Not Work

Ask any estranged mother or grandmother. The more apologetic and kinder they are to their adult children, the more they are terminated as parents and grandparents. I know because I have a free private Facebook group for estranged mothers and grandmothers. Their comments tell the story.

I Blame Myself and the Internet

I blame myself for my situation. And, I also blame the Internet and ‘young shrinks’ who teach their new philosophy: ‘It is all about me, me, and my well-being.” Well, young shrink, you are doing your young clients a disservice because it is not about me, me, me—it is about everyone in the family. And one day, those me’s are going to suffer, and so will their innocent children.

I did research on estranged parents and grandparents and found it, along with loneliness, is the silent epidemic of our times. Millions, and I mean millions, of parents are sitting in silence. They are embarrassed to discuss the estrangement for fear of being thought of as a bad parent as they suffer at the hands of their narcissistic adult children.

For doing what? Not giving them enough of their time in their minds? Not giving them enough of their money? Not being the perfect mother-in-law? There is no excuse for this disrespectful behavior save physical and emotional abuse. To bury a parent and grandparent who is alive is a dishonorable action.

Healthy Communication Strategies When Disagreements Arise Between Women

On a Whim, I Decided to Help

On a whim, I decided to help mothers, grandmothers, and others who were experiencing the same horror story.

Three months ago, I started a free private Facebook group called Estranged Mothers and Grandmothers: Millions Strong. Little did I anticipate that in three months, 10,000 mothers and grandmothers would join the group, which is steadily growing.

I have spent seven years trying to heal myself from the travesty of estrangement. Going through my private mourning process that took a few years. I have a little rock that says “accept” on my perfume tray. I traveled, entertained, socialized, shopped, wrote, started new projects that peaked my interest, and on and on.

Last week, I had two epiphanies—a true moment of insight. I understood the meaning of gaslighting and learned the importance of surrendering to a hostile situation.

Join my group, we are healing together!

Surrender is a Powerful Word

For the last seven years, I have suffered every day, no matter what joys I have had in my life. That is until last week when I learned the power of surrender.

About a week ago, a woman told me a story. It had nothing to do with estrangement. She used the word, “surrender.” She told me she surrendered to her situation. She dropped her end of the rope.

Sweet mothers, grandmothers, and other women in toxic relationships—surrender.

Stop resisting what you cannot win and surrender. You will be giving yourself the opportunity to move on, replacing your negative situation with something new and positive that will bring joy.

Dropping the Rope

I used to think the word “accept” would bring me peace. It did not because how can a mother and grandmother accept estrangement? We cannot. But we can surrender to the lunacy of estrangement and say, “You won the war. I relinquish. Go and find someone else to gaslight while I put my energies into new possibilities.”

People think of surrender as giving up, giving in to unattainable expectations. I see surrendering as empowerment, a form of self-care. When we surrender, we reduce our anxiety, this is important for self-care or as I think of it, self-mothering.

It is a positive coping strategy that gives a sense of peace. When I say or think surrender, I actually feel my body relax. You will, too. Your efforts turn away from what you cannot control to what you can, leaving room for new possibilities.

Surrendering means accepting what is and letting go of what you have no control over. Drop the rope and let the other side live with their unhappiness.

When you surrender, you give control to yourself and your tangible reality rather than allowing others to control you, which causes you angst. You learn to trust yourself in the moment and think about new possibilities.

Embracing the Luxury of a Simple Life and Finding Peace in the Everyday

All Women Must Surrender to Bloom

Once you understand that surrender is liberating and powerful, you will stop swimming upstream and fighting your current life situation. Once you understand that you cannot steer things in the direction you choose, you can stop struggling and embrace the flow of life trusting that things will unfold for the better.

As an estranged mother and grandmother who has suffered untold grief that has left me emotionally and physically debilitated, I have come to the conclusion after much grieving that I surrender—realizing my losses will let new life flow in. I am excited to leave my door open to new possibilities.

I believe the woman who told me her story about surrendering was sent to me for a reason. I truly do. And I will be forever grateful to her. For you see she was not giving me a lesson. She had no idea she had helped me — she shared a personal story. I grasped the meaning and related it to my situation. There are no accidents. The only accident is when a woman does not take hold of a conversation that might help her and act!

I hope I have helped you, and I hope I have opened a new window for you to consider the magic and power of surrender.

Sweet mothers, grandmothers, and other women in toxic relationships—Surrender to Bloom. Amen. Amen.


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June 30, 2024

Grandchildren, Passages After 50, Relationships

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  1. Joyce says:

    *Surrender to bloom* is excellent advice. I think many ppl never fully bloom. And you’re correct, *there are no accidents.*

    • Susan Good says:

      I am smiling. I love my quote, too. It says so much in so few words. Have a lovely day. Warmly, Honey

  2. Melissa Chambers says:

    This article was wonderful

  3. Karen Jackson says:

    I LOVE the idea of dropping your end of the rope!

  4. Anita Paterson says:

    I have surrendered to an extent, but still hold out some hope. It’s just too devastating not to.

    • Susan Good says:

      To surrender does not mean lost hope. It means on a day to day bases you rid yourself of their toxicity on your life and replace toxicity with new and positive energy- a new project, etc. Warmly, Honey

  5. Susan says:

    Dear Honey,
    Thank you for giving a name to my situation, GASLIGHTING! I now better understand what I’m living and going through. It’s hurtful and demeaning to experience this reality that I never envisioned for myself and my family.
    I feel for my grandsons who are missing out on making memories with me. Grandparents have a lifetime of wisdom and experiences their grandchildren can learn from. It’s too bad some adult children don’t realize the harm they’re inflicting with their selfish behavior.

  6. Derita says:

    Hi honey I enjoyed your article gas lighting I asked question too what is gaslighting? Well like the same goes there’s nothing new under the sun everything that’s being done now has been done before but we always called it mind games it works the same way 😊

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