How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Kate McCoy Your Own Question

Kate McCoy
Kate McCoy, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5402
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
Type Your Relationship Question Here...
Kate McCoy is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Kate, I feel like it is often and may be a pattern.

Resolved Question:

Kate, I feel like it is often and may be a pattern. He wont even give me hug when leaving when I do see him after stopping by the house sometimes. he talks and shares with me but has obvious limits. I do not ask for a hug or give him one myself nor do I pry with many questions.  I talked about what he wants to talk about.  I can sense that he doesn't want to give a hug so I never pressure that.   my other son is more open and always give me a hug before he leaves.


 

Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Kate McCoy replied 9 months ago.
If you do see a pattern, then most likely this is more about him than it is your own issues. He may be fearful of being enmeshed again, or he has other feelings about what happened at home that he is not sharing. It might be helpful to try therapy again, even for a few sessions just to see if you can talk this out and reset the boundaries. He needs to feel it is ok to express himself and not hold back all the time, which in turn hurts you.

Kate
Kate McCoy, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5402
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
Kate McCoy and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 months ago.

that's what it feels like to me that he is afraid of becoming en eshed again but I wasn't sure because I always thought that was just my projection or my fear. Do we really need to reset boundaries or is he just staying at a comfortable level that works for him at this time in his life and I so far have just been respecting his limits. both of my sons have a personal side that they don't share with me which is normal but with him in particular maybe he's being overly cautious or learned to be protective and anxious even when that threat is no longer there.

he is clearly uncomfortable in the house which might have a lot to do with the past but I honestly I'm also uncomfortable around him

Expert:  Kate McCoy replied 9 months ago.
You don't have to reset boundaries. But if this is not addressed in some way, he could possibly remain as distant as he is right now. He may be protecting himself and if that is the case, he needs to know he is safe with you. That means resetting boundaries, maybe through therapy or if he is willing, talk it out with you. But if this current situation works for both of you and you understand why he is doing what he is doing, then it is ok to acknowledge it and let it go. He could eventually work it out on his own and through talking with others.

Kate
Kate McCoy, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5402
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
Kate McCoy and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 months ago.

how do I address this with him. Should I just tell him im aware he is uncomfortable in the house and that I wish for him to feel a sense of safety around me? so far the only response he has received from me is respecting jis

boundaries but I'm being hurt because I could tell that he's not being completely authentic was how he behaves. well maybe authentic is not the right word. What I mean is there is some tension.

Expert:  Kate McCoy replied 9 months ago.
You can tell him that you noticed he seems guarded and ask if you can help. Try to be very neutral about it and show concern for him. Ask once and if he resists, back off. Then try again at a later time. You can also mention that you want him to feel safe with you, but you might want to wait until he shares what he feels first. You don't want to scare him by bringing up an issue he is not ready to talk about yet.

Kate
Kate McCoy, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5402
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
Kate McCoy and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 months ago.

okay I can bring it up in that manner next time I see him. However I wonder if I freaked him out today by asking if he wanted me to meet him at Dr. nohens office to exchange documents because he didn't have enough time to stop home. I even told him I could make rice with the chicken I already have prepared if he stops by the house. Yet he told me he had no time and I am aware of his tight schedule. this is the first time I asked him if I could offer him some food because last time he didn't even have enough time to eat. I don't usually do this but me reaching out might trigger a fear response in him which might be responsible for his short answers and not so appreciative of my offer. I let it go because I'm always thinking about boundaries in the back of my mind.

Expert:  Kate McCoy replied 9 months ago.
It is possible that reaching out might have triggered his issues. He could be struggling with new feelings about the past or just be unsure of what to do. Offering to have him for dinner is a normal thing to do. But because of what he feels, it could be that he is pulling back to keep himself safe, even if there is no threat to him.

Kate
Kate McCoy, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5402
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
Kate McCoy and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 months ago.

thank you for telling me that the offer to give him food was normal. Normal is the type of relationship I would like to create with him. Yet boundaries will continue to be respected. For some reason, it was helpful when you told me that it was normal because mostly, is the family dynamic is dysfunctional

Expert:  Kate McCoy replied 9 months ago.
You're welcome, Dee. You are doing a good job with him. It is sometimes a struggle to find a "new normal" once you have both gone through so much together. But you continue to try, which is going to help this to work. And he no doubt wants a relationship with you. He just needs to find his way to where he feels ok.

Kate
Kate McCoy, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5402
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
Kate McCoy and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Kate McCoy replied 9 months ago.
Thank you, Dee! I appreciate the positive ratings and bonuses, very much! :)

Kate
Customer: replied 9 months ago.

Since we both want a relationship, then a new normal should eventually be attainable.


Thank you once again and have a good week until I speak to you next time

Expert:  Kate McCoy replied 9 months ago.
I agree.

You are very welcome. You have a good week too!

Kate

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
< Last | Next >
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin Kernersville, NC
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther Woodstock, NY
  • Thank you so much for taking your time and knowledge to support my concerns. Not only did you answer my questions, you even took it a step further with replying with more pertinent information I needed to know. Robin Elkton, Maryland
  • He answered my question promptly and gave me accurate, detailed information. If all of your experts are half as good, you have a great thing going here. Diane Dallas, TX
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dear Debra

    Advice Columnist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1719
    I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DE/deedeeham/2011-1-24_51523_408.64x64.JPG Dear Debra's Avatar

    Dear Debra

    Advice Columnist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1719
    I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/formybunch/2010-12-06_191055_img_0975.jpg Kate McCoy's Avatar

    Kate McCoy

    Counselor

    Satisfied Customers:

    1235
    Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RE/resolutions66/2011-1-17_05728_IMG8202smilingeditedforJustAnswer.64x64.jpg Elliott, LPCC, NCC's Avatar

    Elliott, LPCC, NCC

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1215
    35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CO/CoachJenK/2012-3-9_31019_Jen.64x64.jpg Coach Jen K.'s Avatar

    Coach Jen K.

    LMSW, CPC

    Satisfied Customers:

    726
    Providing the utmost care and support.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/IN/intrapsyc.com/2012-2-20_161928_RGMTPicturex5002012.64x64.png Rafael M.T.Therapist's Avatar

    Rafael M.T.Therapist

    Psychotherapist

    Satisfied Customers:

    549
    MHT-MHRS-MS-MA Integral Psychotherapist & Life Coach
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/HU/hungryjack20/IMG_1281_edit_2.64x64.jpg Dr. L's Avatar

    Dr. L

    Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    349
    Licensed as a Psychologist and Marriage & Family Therapist.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/SU/suzmsw/2011-9-2_184634_Thisone.64x64.JPG Suzanne's Avatar

    Suzanne

    Therapist, LCSW

    Satisfied Customers:

    338
    Experienced in treating trauma, relationship issues, co-dependency