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I've been estranged from my family member for a while and would like to work on our relationship now. How can I do that?

22 Answers
Last Updated: 07/16/2018 at 7:43pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
United Kingdom
Moderated by

Halayma Khatun, M.A Theology(U.K, UAE), Diploma With Distinction in Counseling, Certification trauma abandonment


Compassionate, patient, experienced depression counselor. I use Psychodynamic counseling techniques. My counseling experience is +8 years, I counsel women.

Top Rated Answers
October 2nd, 2014 8:45am
It is all started with ourself..Examine what we have done and work on it. If u need to ask forgiveness do it no matter who done wrong. One needs to be humble and I believe from there anything can be refresh again.
August 17th, 2015 7:44pm
I've always believed that no matter how families become estranged or distant from each other, they are still a family. It just takes time, perseverance and a lot of love to work on reconnecting with your family. First thing that one should do is to reflect internally on your intention to reconnect with your family. Be sure that it is what you really wanted to do and will follow through with it no matter how difficult it may be. Next is settling any disputes between you and your family. If there is something that you have done, humbly ask for forgiveness. It may not be accepted immediately but when they see that you are sincere with your words by showing it through actions, it will be settled. It may take long but take heart and do not be discouraged. What if they are the ones who have done me wrong? Go to your family and forgive them for what they have done wrong. Show them you love and care about them through actions. Welcome them back to your life like you would welcome someone whom you have not seen for so long. What if we just became distant and no conflicts happened? Then you can easily reconnect with your family through actions. Give them a call and how are they doing. Tell them you miss them and you love them very much. Your family would definitely be so delighted to hear from you again. If not so, do not be discouraged but inquire if you have done something wrong and ask for forgiveness. Reconnecting can be a tedious effort but always remember that when you follow through with your actions and persevere, it will bring good results.
October 27th, 2014 6:58pm
Open up to them more. Communication is key. Dont be afraid to talk to them, im sure they want to listen to you and start a relationship with you.
July 10th, 2018 8:53pm
You can start by reaching out and letting them know you want to reconnect. If they know what your intentions are they might be more open to working on things openly.
October 23rd, 2014 9:27pm
Maybe you could reach out to them and see if they want to renew a relationship, and hopefully you guys can resolve your issues with time.
November 6th, 2014 5:34pm
Every situation is different, but reaching out to them with a short message, letter or call might be a good way to start. Let them know that you'd like to work on your relationship with them, and understand that it might be a long road and that rushing things or getting into too much too fast might be detrimental.
November 18th, 2014 9:46am
Try talking to them a little, over an innocuous subject like a tv show, or a popular sport, and try to work in more and more conversation topics.
November 18th, 2014 1:34pm
initiate contact with the said family member, try not to make them feel guilty and take a positive a relaxed approach
May 22nd, 2015 2:36am
I would say you can start off by writing them a letter and express to them how you feel... You can send them your personal information through this letter asking them if they want to get a hold of you to talk some more or to agree on a get together.. They know how to reach out to you
July 27th, 2015 10:30am
I think you can try to reestablish your connection with your family member by contacting them and apologising for your past mistakes. If they still won't let you back in, maybe you can try to show them that you've changed and now you're ready to mend your broken relationship with them :)
August 4th, 2015 10:52pm
I would try starting a conversation that is not face-to-face. Something like a letter explaining that you would like to try and fix your relationship. This way, the family member wont have to react right away. It gives both of you time to think about the right things to say.
October 26th, 2015 6:16pm
Contact them. Although you haven't seen each other for a while, do things you have previously done together to bring up old memories and feelings.
November 8th, 2014 10:59pm
Start by writing down everything you want to say to them or want them to say to you - this does not all have to happen during your first conversation but getting it out of your head and onto paper can make that first step a lot less scary or overwhelming. If you have a trustworthy friend or relative have them role-play the conversation with you. Making the first contact and having that first conversation is going to be nerve-wracking for the both of you so do as much preparation as you can beforehand. When you reach out be honest with the person but also respect them - they may not be ready to reconnect and if so let them know you will be there when they are. The road to healing your relationship might be bumpy but don't give up!
November 10th, 2014 10:03pm
Writing a letter to them could work well for this. By writing a letter you can thoughtfully explain your reasons for wanting to reconnect, your apprehensions, and other thoughts and feelings you may have about the reconciliation. A letter will also give the other person time to process your request thoughtfully. Be honest and open in the letter describing how your wishes.
November 12th, 2014 5:25pm
Reach out. Tell them how you are feeling. Initiate contact. Sometimes, the first step in fixing a festering wound is being the person to put themselves out there first. You won't know until you try.
November 18th, 2014 4:15am
I have found for me, that the best way to reconcile with someone you are estranged with is to start by apologizing for your part in the estrangement and saying what has changed now that has led you to come back to reconcile. That seems to help because you are taking responsibility for any way you contributed, even if it was small, and opens the door for the other person to do the same.
June 18th, 2015 3:38pm
First it is important to ask yourself why you wish to rebuild a relationship, as you need to make sure you're doing it for the right reasons. Then it is about reaching out and trying to identify and get passed the issues that has led to the estranged relationship.
August 16th, 2016 4:24pm
By having a sit down positive manner conversation, it can allow for improvement on the relationship along with further improvement on working to get to a better, safer, and healthier relationship with a family member. The best you can do is be yourself, and be open and honest about how you feel.
December 27th, 2016 5:03pm
Well, you can definitely start by sending a letter (better than a text message) stating that you would like to work on your relationship since it has been a while and you probably *miss* that person so much and you'd like to see you both in a better state than you originally are.
January 30th, 2017 12:56pm
Take it step by step. From small casual gestures. When you see positive response then talk about it, say that you would like to keep it up and improve the relationship. If you do not see positive response then also do talk because in that case only talking openly might change the situation to put it back to how you planned it to go
July 4th, 2017 1:05pm
It could start of with just a few conversations but if that gets awkward, try to find an activity that you could do together like cook or go out on a picnic or even watch a movie together. Activities that engage both of you will be the best as they don't tire or bore any of you and it could be fun. Even just a walk can be more than enough.
July 16th, 2018 7:43pm
Maybe you can be the first person to reach out to your family member. Explain how you feel and be honest.