I've come across a very big concern of mine lately. My father and I are, and always have been, very close since I was young. We consider each other best friends, and we never fail to bullshit with one another about sports, politics, or just how life managed to kick us in the balls yet again. But the last couple of times we've spoken, it seems that there is a clear boundary between us. I know the stories of sons around my age (20) getting in fights with their fathers; I don't know if I am just coming of age to this, or it is something else.
I have been trying to gain independence from him and my mother, but I never feel like I'm doing it the right way. I mean, don't get me wrong, I love my family, but lately I feel like I just don't want to talk to either him or my mom, only to my brother. He's been drinking a lot more, and I'm not crazy about it; I'll give him his space to do what he wants, but I mean, I definitely don't want him being all sorts of reckless.
As you can tell, I want to 'rebuild this bridge' if that's what we need to do. If it's taking a look at myself in the mirror and recognizing that I'm doing something wrong, then so be it, and same for him. But I guess I just don't know what to do in this stage of life.
My thoughts? Having kids grow up and leave home is a big deal for parents, especially when you have a close relationship with your kids. It may even be a bigger deal to parents than to kids. For kids leaving home, they are starting on a new and exciting journey. For the parents, it can be like losing a family member. This young adult that you have raised from a baby is suddenly leaving (and usually just as they are becoming interesting). It leaves a hole in the family routine and in the house.
I would let your parents know that you still feel the same way about them, and that you will continue to keep your close relationship, to the extent possible, even after you have moved out.
Excellent point. Your father, seeing as you two were best buds when you were younger, may be mourning your 'loss'. He may feel as though he is losing you and feels helpless to stop your leaving especially if you're going to be some distance away from him.
My comments are spoken from experience. I went through this two years ago when my oldest left for college.