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Viral TikTok explains why it’s OK for adult kids to go ‘no contact’ with their parents

Woman talks about going no contact with parents
@chatswithchass/TikTok

There are a number of touchy subjects in the realm of parenthood, and the whole “going no contact” thing is certainly one of them. Though it seems it’s more widely understood these days, one viral TikTok perfectly explains why it’s OK for adult children to go no-contact with their parents—and why it’s no one else’s business.

Chassity Marchal (@chatswithchass) wants people to stop guilting adult children about severing relationships with their parents. In her video, she explains that going “no contact” with her mother was not an easy decision for her—because how could it be? She attempted reconciliation with her mother several times, but she reached her breaking point after her mother’s repeated patterns of abusive behavior continued. Enter: boundaries.

“Stop telling people who are no contact with their parents that they need to make things right, they need to talk to their parents, that that’s your mom, how can you just not talk to her?” Marchal begins her video. She shares that someone told her that her mom “isn’t guaranteed tomorrow” as a way to guilt her into reestablishing contact.

As someone who has been “no contact” with a parent for more than a dozen years (my mother, which you can read more about here and here), this really hits home for me. And plenty of other adult children who I know are in similar unfortunate positions. And I cannot begin to count the amount of times I’ve heard versions of “but that’s your MOTHER” and “you only get ONE MOTHER” through the years, as if this is an ideal scenario for me.

“I have 26 years’ worth of things that have happened,” Marchal explained. “I just know that if it was my husband that was saying or doing the things that my mom has done, that y’all would not be telling me that I need to stay with him and talk to him and make it work. So why is it different when it comes to parents?”

This is such a brilliant comparison, honestly.

“I have boundaries. I’m not going to let people treat me just whichever way they want to treat me,” she continues. “Also, keep in mind that being in no contact with my mom was not an easy decision for me. It is not something I wanted to do or that I took lightly. I am not happy about it. I don’t want to have this sort of relationship. I don’t want to be doing this. But I am also putting myself first and doing what I feel is the best.”

The “going no contact” decision was initiated by my mother, which was a surprise to many people who inserted their noses into my toxic family dynamic after my parents’ divorce 17 years ago (Kim Basinger and Alec Baldwin’s divorce was like a day at Disneyworld compared to my parents’ separation).

You’re allowed to cut toxic or abusive people out of your life, period. If I hadn’t held up my own end of going no contact, I wouldn’t be here. Full stop. So before you question a stranger’s decisions about this subject, remember this video.

A version of this post was published in June 2023. It has been updated.