I am so desperate right now. I have a very bad relationship with my father, always have and most likely always will. He is extremely verbally and emotionally abusive. I still have never in my life experienced such words from anyone else on this planet. He has so much hatred bottled inside of his self that I can only guess is the reason he lashes out on me. He never has a nice thing to say to me or to anyone. When he does speak, which is basically on occasion to me, the hatred and ill words that flow from his mouth are truly sinful to listen to. I am a very successful person in my professional life, and deal with many many many professionals daily. Yet he will tell me that Im worthless, and need to grow up. Now mind you, I do find myself retaliating his words, and I do lash back with hateful words. I can't sit back and allow this man to persue my emotions without a fight. The such has been going on for years. I don't live home with my parents, and find myself having to leave the house after a heated hateful arguement with him often. Years ago, he and I argued to the point that he kicked me out of the house and I didn't speak to him for several years after that. I just don't know what he wants? He doesn't seem to ever think he is wrong. He doesn't ever think his hateful words are damaging. Since I was a child, he has belittled me and ridiculed me and told me that I would never amount to anything. He has never hugged or showed me any sort of affection in any way. He never asks how I am, whats new in my life.. come to think of it, he never speaks to me at all, unless he needs to know something pertaining to his life, or how I could help him out. Other than his selfishness, he doesn't talk to me, unless he lashes out at me. My mother doesn't defend me at all, she doesn't want to deal with his sickness on her. I don't understand how anyone could behave this way. Even living my entire life this way with an abusive parent, I don't understand how anyone could speak to another human being this way, let alone their own flesh and blood. I know, through my own self healing, that it isn't me. I know its him. He is the one who feels the way he tries to make me think I am, with his words.. I know that when someone lashes out verbally on someone else, its their own reflective feelings upon themselves. But it still hurts to be told that your a big zero, especially at my age, by a parent. I know his words aren't true. I know that I am accomplished and respected by my peers, colleagues and my profession. I have worked hard to rise above him, and find happiness in my life. The only thing I can think is this is what he lacks?
I just needed to vent in writing, since I am too ashamed to tell anyone in my life what an abusive parent I have.
If there is anyone out there who can relate, and reassure me that I'm not alone, please please reach out to me.
You are by no means alone. I grew up with emotionally and physically abuse parents. I am successful and have slowly been able to recapture some of my self esteem, but it has not been easy. Over the years, i have had so many emotional issues that i feel have kept me from suceeding further and earlier in life, but i am thankful for what i have and where i am now. It has taken me decades to come to a point where i now feel better about myself and my life. But it was not without medication and much talking things over with my siblings. I too have problems with anxiety and depression. i see a psychiatrist for other medication that i am now taking which has helped me alot. Nevertheless, i still have so many emotional issues that i deal with on a daily basis, because my parents are still very much alive. The thing which you did not mention in your post which is different than my experience is that both my parents as teenagers were and still are (very much professed) born again devout praying christians and faithful bible readers. These people never smoked, drank, did drugs or cursed, faithfully attended church with us in tow. The perfect little family all sitting in a pew singing hymnals and reading the word of GOD. My father, with my mo at his side always preaching and sharing the word with anyone that had minute to listen. Then, we'd go home and he was a freakin monster that we hated and my mother turned a deaf ear to it all. He was a very creapy person. To see someone at church, so friendly and smiley and praying and singing and to see the transformation when you got home...all of our lives, this is what we grew up with. We kids were all very afraid of him and his belt which he loved to use on us, especially me because i hated that he enjoyed it so much; to this day i cannot look at him without despising who and what he is. my mo has appologized for her actions and her words although she is still very sacastic and manipulative and hurtful. My fa on the other hand defends his every action and states that he would not take anything said or done as he did what he felt was right and if given another chance would do the same things no matter what. Even a non-christian person would say, yes, i would not be so harsh onyou girls, i would not have beat you sensless with the belt when you were only 4 years old, i would have been more understanding with the four of you since you were just children and i was so young (20) when you mo and i married...no, none of that. he absolutely refuses to admit that he did anything wrong.
Well, enough of me. I hope you keep writing and sharing your feelings as i also could use an ear. i am ashamed to share with co-workers and my siblings just feel more depressed when we talk about our childhood which we all hated and would never want to go back to.
writ back soon.
Thank you for responding to my post. I am just beside myself tonight. As I just can't take the abuse any longer, and just feel so alone. My parents are not devout Christians, however they are Catholic, mom goes to church on occasion, dad, he doesn't go with her.
The only thing that I keep telling myself here, over and over in my head tonight, is that I have to never treat anyone this way, and when I do have my own children some day, that I must never never never do to them what he has done to me. I to, like you have a hard time looking at him when I go over their house. He repulses me, for the years of how he treated me. I do not respect him at all, which he uses as an excuse all the time, for treating me the way he does. I was always a very good kid. Respected my parents wishes, never caused any trouble, did well in school... I never truly deserved the way he treated me. NObody does. If I were to tell a friend of mine, they'd be shocked soley because I am a good person, and try very hard to surpress my saddness and hide the truth of how he treats me to them. He is a loner, he likes to be alone. He loves people not to bother him, he doesn't like people asking him any questions, he doesn't want anyone talking around him, he gets annoyed if people are happy, he doesn't like to see people to succeed, he gets annoyed if I talk to my mother and he "has to hear my stupid voice all the time".. he is just so full of hate. I am sickened by him. He is such a miserable loathsome person. I don't know who raised him?
Actually I am feeling a bit better now. Using words to pour out my feelings have always healed me.
Thanks again for listening to me..
please feel free to add anything
I would print out your posts and mail them to your Dad, or just drop it off to his house.
Why on earth would someone want to live their only life so miserable? What's the point in living then if you can't enjoy all the goodness is life? If you can't see any good in anything then your life is pointless.
It's good you got out of all that and now are doing good. I commend you for that.
You must realise by now that, barring a miracle, you are NEVER going to have the relationship you want with your father. This sounds very harsh, but once you accept this, his power to hurt you diminishes hugely. I learnt this in the case of my mother. The first step was to place the responsibility for her abuse on her shoulders and stop blaming myself by believing her opinions of me; the second step was to accept that it would never change, that, effectively, I wasn't going to have a mother-daughter relationship, so released myself from the need to strive for this. That really almost completed my healing, and the next stage was to forgive her for being a useless and abusive parent. That was all she knew to be. Like the weather. You can accept what you know will never change when you can let go the hope that it will change.
Wow, the first half of your post, it's like I could have written it myself. The only difference between our fathers is that mine has "high points" where he is affectionate and caring...but half the time he's exactly like yours. Not years, but there was a several month period once when I didn't have contact with him, because of some terrible, terrible things he said to and about me.
The only good advice I have ever received regarding how to deal with an abusive parent is this: set your boundaries. When my therapist told me that, I realized I had always allowed my dad to talk to me that way. I either crumpled inward and cried, defeated. Or I fought back defensively and viciously, looking foolish. I'd never just stood up to him and said, "You do not get to treat me that way."
So the next time he DID treat me that way after my therapist told me that, I just interrupted him and said, "I am an adult. You don't have to be okay with me and my decisions, but you most certainly do not get to disrespect them". I was shaking and terribly nervous. The game plan was to tell him, and if his abuse continued after that, well then I would no longer have a relationship with my dad. It was his choice. He could either start respecting me, or he would lose a daughter.
Fortunately, he chose to start respecting me. Every so often in conversation I can see the hatred he carries around start to spill over...he'll begin to say something negative about me or another person, and I will just politely excuse myself, or tell him point blank that I don't have time to listen to that crap, and he can continue the conversation with himself.
Life is too short to let someone treat you that way. Even if you're 100% confident in yourself (which is amazing to me considering), you still don't need to EVER be around people who don't lift you up and enrich your life. Father or not. So I say try what I did, try setting a boundary and not standing for that kind of behavior. He'll either change, or you'll lose a relationship that wasn't remotely good anyway. You can't make him change- he has to make the choice himself whether he wants a daughter or not.
I have tried what you suggested several times. I always tell him things as you suggested.. his response to me (in a tone that could blast someone into next year), is that I am a selfish *&^%$, who needs to grow up. In his view, I act like a child who knows nothing of the world, nothing of how to deal with people, and need to respect his wishes, and himself. There is not getting through to him. I seperated myself from both him and my mother for 5years due to him kicking me out of the house over a very heated arguement. I, somehow rose above it, got a fantastic career going, have my very own house, and after 5 years, due to an some circumstances reunited with them again. But almost immediately the abuse started again. My mothers response is to simply ignore him, which is extremely hard to do when he can yell louded than an opera singer. He is horrid. I truly hate the man. I don't know how to get through to him. Prior to the arguement we had yesterday, we had one over the weekend, where I told him to stop speaking to me, and I will stop speaking to you. So basically when I go over to see my mother, I ignore him. Its easier this way. So yesterday when I was visiting with my mom, and chatting about some gossip, apparently the sound of my voice asking questions TO MY MOM, upset him to the degree that he begun yelling at how big a loser I am, what a child I am, grow up.. its always the same crap. His insults rarely change. He told me to leave, and don't come back.. which I then did. I mean what warrented that whole mess? He is just so impulsive and self destructing that I don't even think he can think a reaction through, I think he is so self loathing that he runs purely on his sick emotions. I believe he is truly a sick man, who has nothing but toxic hate running through his veins. You know, I work hard, I come home to see my mom, to chat and then go home and unwind... does anyone need this nonsense?
Again, my mom doesn't defend me to him at all. She doesn't understand why I fight with him. Ignoring him will not solve the problems, especially when someone is slamming you with such disgusting words.. How can I not retaliate?
I've already lost my family for years, I know what its like to live without them. I had to suffer the guilt of trying to explain to people why they weren't in my life, being alone, and worse.. I always felt like people didn't get believe me.. or felt like I was some kind of animal to shun my family. So I don't want to go back to that again. But in all actuality, this what I am still left with is intolerable as well. I am so lost and confused. I need to make my mother understand that I can't go visit as often any longer. I am going to put a barrier up, and remove my self a bit from them.
im wondering if your mother can come visit you. Will your mother be willing to visit you at your house without your dad. It makes me so sad to hear that your father yells such horrid things to you while you are trying to visit with your mother. I mean my fa was horrible when we were younger and still under his roof, but now that we're older and have our own lives, he's realized he does not have any control over us anymore; so whenever i go visit with mom, he just goes to his room and that is SO, just fine with me. But seems like your dad sticks around just to make you miserable. What is it that he wants? Does he want you to give them money since your successful and you arent helping them or something; there has to be a reason for his sick and horrible behavior towards you; have you asked him - WHY ARE YOU ACTING LIKE A MANIAC?? Ask him - what is it you want from me?
And, im wondering if your mother can tell you why he acts this way? Have you asked her why your father is so angry, see what she says. I would definitely try to get to the bottom of whatever it is that is causing such a volatile atmosphere; and is it just when you are there; or does he act like this all the time, with other people; your mother. sorry for all the questions; but just trying to understand why the anger in your father; not excusing his behavior at all; but unless he is possessed by demons, there must be a reason for his insufferable conduct, as well as your mother's seemingly passive and unguarded response during his attacks. If i were your mother, i would at the very least say, lets go somewhere, where its a little more quiet so we can talk; to another room or outside or just go for a walk.
Anyway, i will pray for you; but please write back when you can.
My mom says he is always like that, hes very moody, and he doesn't like to do be asked to do anything for anyone, if you leave him be, and be quite hes fine. Its just so hard to explain without knowing him I guess. I just need some room I think just to put some distance between us. My mom never takes my side, she just has learned to accept his ways, and she doesn't understand why I can't. Its just so too disfunctunal for me.
Distance helps. That is what i have done and i have been doing much better. I havent seen my dad in over 3 mos; i do talk to mom and see her, but usually he is not in the room. I try not to visit very long at their house. i only stay for, at the longest 20 minutes. I know my mom hates it when i leave so fast but i just feel uncomfortable there. I have recently (past 2 years) moved 70 miles away from their house, so i can use that as an excuse to not visit. If mom complains about not seeing me, i just tell her she is always welcome to come see me.
Try that, see if your mom will come to your place.
But, please try to see someone professionally to help you with the verbal abuse you have endured all of your young life.
I'm so sorry to hear this because I know what it's like. My dad died 17 years ago, but over 20 years ago he had a stroke and became unable to speak. But I can still hear his whinging voice complaining about what a 'trial' I was to him every time I wanted to do something that a good parent would think of as normal enjoyment of life. He had such comtempt for my emotions, and as long as I live, I don't think I'll ever be able to forgive him.
My mum was the only daughter of emotionally abusive parents, who were utterly selfish to her. Her answer to this was to dream of being part of a Happy Family. Accordingly one-to-one dealings with my mum were always good, because she worked hard on being a good mother. But when my father treated me badly, she couldn't see it! He was always labelled as a Good Father and Good Husband. I was supposed to realise how good he was and be humbly grateful that he wasn't as bad as her parents. I reckon if my mum had removed her 'blindfold' and 'ear muffs' and seen him as he really was, her fantasy of the Happy Family would have been shattered. So I was supposed to pretend all was well so she didn't have to face uncomfortable reality.
It was always the same. Dad was rude, selfish or comtemptuous. I protested loudly, both as a child and as an adult, and the older I got the better I did it. However both parents insisted that he was good and I should realise it, because it was always me that was wrong for objecting.
I'm very glad I did object. I reckon that loudly stating my right to decent treatment was the beginning of my salvation, so I didn't become a cowering doormat.
I agree with you xanadu2, the same in my situation. Dad is correct and me the selfish ungrateful one. I am just sick of it. I decided to put a lot of space between us, and I also informed my mother that she needs to tell him to leave me be when I visit her. I am too old to fight with my dad like I'm 16 again.
I think this is an instigating thread. No easy answers.
I am sorry for you. This is really an awful situation. However, I am glad that you found that speaking out on your pain is healing to you.
I am sorry for you again because this man, who happens to be your father, has instilled so much hatred into you. I am not saying you have not one reason to hate him, but I wish you could replace at least a part of this feeling with something less harmful to your own heart. Actually, I think he hates himself a lot more than he hates you or anyone else for that matter. Doesn't he deserve to be pitied in a certain way?
Wait a minute. Please strain your brain as best as you can: are you able to recall at least one moment when he was kind to you, or when he did something good to you or tolerated a tantrum?
I think all of us have abusive persons in our lives, if not parents, then it is a boss, or a partner, or even a son or a daughter. It is a more dramatic situation when it is a parent or a child, because these are meant to be for ever, no?
I have learned over the years that the best way of coping with an abusive person is to resist them.
My best advice is for you never to fight verbally with your father. Why retort? Why retaliate? Let it go. If he drives you away from his house, leave immediately. It is ridiculous to do such a thing to one's own child, but it is his house, after all. If he stays around while you are visiting your mom, what can you do? If you want to converse with your mother privately, go somewhere else and gently ask him if you can have an intimate conversation with her. In one word, resist him, however outrageous or coward this may appear to you. In fact, it isn't.
I am not telling you to offer him your other cheek. Instead, move away from him without lowering your head. Let him stand alone.
This won't probably change him or the past, but it may change you and your present.
Hi. I can relate with you. At least i think i can. When my parents were still married, they have been divorced for 6 years now, but when they were still married, my dad was abusive. Both verbally and physically. He would get drunk and just start beating on us, or he would have a bad day at work and take it out on us here at home. By us I mean my mom, myself and my two younger brothers.
When I got married to my sons father, I soon seen that he was the same way. He became physically and mentally abusive towards me. And I wasn't going to put up with that again from anyone. plus i didnt want him to turn that towards our son also. So, I got rid of him asap. And thank God our son is with me full time. He doesnt even make an effort to see his son at all. Which, I hate to say this, but i think thats a good thing. I wouldnt feel safe having him around my son at all.
Since my parents have divorced and my dad has moved out and all that, now he tries to be the dad that he never was. I believe its too late for that though. After years of abuse he thinks he can make it up to me now. I dont think thtas going to happen
I guess I can’t really help you sort out the problem, but it hopefully does you good to vent, and know you are not alone. Please continue to believe that you are absolutely right to resist in whatever way suits you best. If I’d tried to humour my dad and never answered him back, or come to feel humbly grateful he only treated me with contempt, as my otherwise good mother expected, I would surely have become some kind of wreck of a person, without self esteem or self confidence. Perhaps that would have made him feel good and smart by comparison and an independent woman of strong character was some kind of threat. I don’t know.
Unfortunately I sometimes had to resort to living with my parents as an adult. After all houses in the UK are extremely expensive and so unaffordable except for married couples. There was no escaping my dad.
I didn’t have to do anything at all to provoke his temper. I remember silently staring out of the window, in my own free time, and thinking hard, and he laid into me because I should have been doing something else. The excuse was it wouldn’t have been tolerated when he was at work. Huh? What exactly does that have to do with it?
Or he told me something and I gave him a quiet and reasonable answer, agreeing with him. So he let fly with his temper, and shouted at me for disagreeing! What exactly was I supposed to have said, then? I suppose the great strain of actually permitting me to exist in little corners of his house was supposed to justify temper. Certainly his favourite reply to any act of utter selfishness or thoughtlessness on his part was: ‘It’s my house!’ I wish I’d asked him if he was afraid he wouldn’t get value for money if he thought about anyone but himself.
Instead I used to point out that in that case I needed my own house. Then he would scornfully belittle my ability to manage. In fact I now thoroughly enjoy living in my own house. Even being alone doesn’t bother me. After all, there is no hostile presence to avoid and I can enjoy doing what I like.
I was going to tell you how I came to terms with his rudeness. It seems to me that one of the greatest griefs a child ever has to bear is the death of a loving parent. I dreaded the day when I lost my mum. Then I thought, when my dad dies, why should I grieve? I’ve gone through the grief in his lifetime. Without longing for his death, I knew that one day I would stand at his funeral and feel nothing. Nothing at all. Since I’d be spared any pain then, it all evens out.
Actually the treatment he inflicted on me had another effect. There is something that has been mystifying me for years, and in the last week I feel that I’ve finally figured it out. More next time.