"Parents cannot effectively communicate their love to a child unless they are also a source of effective authority. "

19 yo Telling Parents Off

Question

Same daughter - More issues. This is related to the daughter that I have asked about in previous posts. She continues to be distant in her relationship. She will never return a "I love you" and seems very agitated when we say it to her. We have tried to help her as best we can by paying her car insurance, phone bill, and other things that we think would show love and help her. Her Facebook posts come across as a super spiritual lady that has been broken but is finding healing, etc. She is taking a semester off of college and living in a house with 2 other girls. She has had some misfortunes and not a lot of work. My wife was wanting to help her out and get some things done at our house so she offered to pay her to help. She did come out and help some, but there were 2 occasions where is was a matter of her sitting around complaining about us. One day, it was telling my wife how we were doing things wrong in our disciplining her younger siblings including the wisdom that she had learned in Child Development classes. My wife felt that God helped her to listen and not argue with her. I think it was the next day that she proceeded to tell my wife how bad it was that we did not support her in her career choice and that all the older kids felt the same way - either abut their career or choice of mates. We (my wife and I) are very aware of our shortcomings and have tried to glean any truth from her criticisms even though it has been painful to take. In fact, some of her ideas about dealing with our 2 Down Syndrome kids seemed reasonable and I have attempted to make some adjustments. However, both of our DS kids have a very stubborn streak in them. We have tried a lot of things to try to help them to obey but have not been as successful as we wish. Last night, we invited her to come out for home-made soup and she came by after work. As usual there was no sign of appreciation or help cleaning up after the meal. My DS son was on the computer and my wife and I told him to get off. He resisted and my wife was leaving the house so she spoke very sternly to him. My daughter was there and decided that she knew better how to handle it, so she went and hugged him, telling him to talk about why he felt so sad, etc. I left the room and waited for her to leave. She did talk him away from the computer and then left without saying a word. I took away his video privilege for the night and his stuffed animal (not sure that was wise). I didn't think much about it until I received the following text: "If you all ever get the slightest bit curious why you all have such crappy relationships with all of your kids and all of us are a little screwed up, it's because of lots of moments exactly like just happened with Josh tonight. I hope you all are super happy that you've "won" so many battles and made us obey you. But news flash: the war was over our hearts and you're losing every single battle. Screw you all for making Josh so sad tonight."
It was sent to my wife and me - neither of us replied. What should be our reaction?
Here are some ideas that I have had:
1. Ignore it and let time and prayer do their work
2. Confront her and tell her to mind her own business,etc.
3. Have a family meeting and ask all the older siblings if they agree or disagree with this assessment of us
4. Take back all the Christmas presents and buy counseling for all of us (being facetious)
5. Surely you have a better solution.
Thanks for being there for us! It's tough with the holidays upon us and all!

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