Problems with my dad

Postby Translucent » Tue Jan 31, 2017 12:48 am

So today my dad comes home from work and asks if i'd like to come to work with him tomorrow instead of "doing nothing all day". I said i'll think about it, but that what he said made me mad. I said you can't be treating me like this and judging me like this, you don't know what i was doing all day. He denied saying that at all and called me a liar for saying he said that, after getting an inch away from my face. When he called me a liar that made me really mad and i walked away.

My dad is a compulsive liar and has emotionally abused me for most of my life. But he's the only father figure i've known. Yet he upsets me daily. He is very stubborn and cannot take criticism or he bounces it back or brings up past events. He's a workaholic and after coming home from work he works on his own projects. That's all fine, but he tries to pull me into his work and projects, often using dirty means such as coersion and straight up force. He disrespects me and lies to me which makes me question my own point of view and sanity.

Growing up, he destroyed my will to live by forcing me to work with him, all the while demeaning me and being angry. As a workaholic, he cannot stop working, and he is also a hoarder and very materialistic. He never let me be myself nor gave me time to work on my own projects, such as poetry, art and even my own social skills. He sucked me into what he wanted to do, and never asked what i'd like to do. This doesn't just stop at work, but also social events such as church, fishing, or even going on walks. If i say no to him, he finds a way for me to eventually say yes, by casting me down. He is so controlling and unpredictable that i can't stand to be around him at all. But i also feel guilty because i have a personality where i like to help if someone needs it, and he uses that to get whatever he wants out of me.

The way my dad has treated me has destroyed my life. I cannot stand up for myself, i feel i have no control in my life, I always keep my emotions inside, and i have low self-esteem. I feel weak and powerless and, worst of all, perpetually guilty because my dad always tries to force me around him, and when i say no he berates me. If i say yes i have to put up with his attitude, if i say no then i feel guilty.

I'd like to ask 2 questions:
1. Should i ignore when he angers me or should i try to fight for my cause?
2. Should i give up on him and live apart from him, or should i try to mend our relationship?
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#1

Postby Livetowin » Tue Jan 31, 2017 2:31 pm

I understand your situation well, but before I get into a discussion I would like to know your age so I know better how to fashion my response.
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#2

Postby proudconfidentman » Wed Feb 01, 2017 11:38 am

Yeah we need to know how old you are before we can advise you.
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#3

Postby Translucent » Fri Feb 03, 2017 1:15 am

I'm 25
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#4

Postby HumanB » Sat Feb 04, 2017 2:07 am

Where is your ma? Do you have any siblings? Are they at home too? How do they cope with it?
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#5

Postby grichika » Sat Feb 04, 2017 2:53 pm

im 17 year and i have similar problem ;'
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#6

Postby Alex4 » Mon Feb 06, 2017 1:28 am

Translucent,
Some of this may sound like I am siding with your father, but its merely speculative.

Your father must love you in the only way he can. If he didn't, he wouldn't want you to go to work with him. He obviously has problems, and trying to drag you to work even when you say you don't want to, may be his twisted way of keeping you with him. If he did love you, he wouldn't want you to be around at home let alone take you to work.

Walking away may not be the best thing. there are too many reasons why he seems to have the need to control you for me to list them all. What you don't want to do either is to start a fight. Without knowing more about him and his personality and how he deals with anger, that could be a little dangerous.

You are old enough to live on your own if you have a decent job. You can't make him go to therapy, something it sounds like he my need, but it might help you work through what his reactions to you and treatment of you have done to your own psyche. If you can't be free to chase your own dreams at home, then finding a less stressful environment might be good for you.

From what you have said, primarily him getting in your face literally, he sounds confrontational. If he weren't, the sitting down with him and discussing how you feel without a mediator might be dangerous as well. There are counselors that will act as a moderator between two people in a safe environment. He may not agree to that thought.

Some parents cool down a bit if they only see you now and then. They want to see their child and realize they have to change their behavior if they want to see you. At any rate, you need to be able to live your own life and not always feel at odds with your father. The number one thing I would suggest it that you see a therapist to both undo what your father has done and to learn either how to deal with him or to move. There is just too many possibilities to go into it on a forum.

I hope you are able to resolve this. You don't sound happy, and you deserve to.
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#7

Postby Livetowin » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:53 am

I grew up with a verbally abusive father and my situation was pretty severe in terms of me finding my sense of self-worth. From the time I was five until I was 17, it was nothing for my dad to say to me, " I wish you were never born." And it wasn't because I was creating havoc in his life. I was a very mild-mannered kid who never got into trouble. But if I had issues in school making a top grade, that would be sufficient. I had to go to summer school to pass third grade because it was determined I couldn't see what the teacher was writing on the board. I was too young and too shy to speak up or articulate my circumstances. But my dad made sure he knew I disappointed him. Of course when the glasses went on, my grades rebounded quickly and all was well again.

But the worst part about these outbursts, when they occurred, was the part that came about hour afterwards. He would apologize but then add, " You know you had it coming." So he would give himself a pass, but always made sure I carried the shame of the moment instead of him. So that made me very ambivalent about how to see myself. Was I simply a complete failure or were my successes in life worth their merit? Were they really just ordinary accomplishments and I was still really nobody? That's the kind of grip my dad's judgement and verbal banishment had on me.

So at a very early age I became self-aware. I had to! While most kids were just going through the paces of being kids and having fun, I was already having to evaluate why I existed in this world. I mean he was my father and he created me so that meant he was right to assess my worth right? If he said I didn't deserve to live, I guess he had merit in that right? Wrong... But it took me a while to get to that answer. Here's the irony to all this. He was a quality control worker at a factory during the day but picked up a license to give sermons in our church on the weekends. How's that for a nice cover? I not only had to fight him but I had to look to the Heavens for my crimes as well. It's nice being told, I'll wake up in hell one day if I don't get myself together. "No worries dad. I'm already there." I developed my sarcasm at a young age too.

Eventually I stood up to my dad. One night we had a blow up that ended with me leaving the house and telling him what a no good son-of-a-bitch he was. I was 19 at the time and I was finding my voice through some very good friends. I was able to do a compare and contrast and was beginning to understand that how my dad talked to me was not normal. If you ask where my mother was in all this, all I say was she fell in line. They had that old school relationship from the 50's where the man was the figure head and you never dared question his authority. So what I did shook the earth in our home. I developed my own voice. That didn't sit well with the second "son of God" as I called him.

I stayed with a good friend while I was away and my dad finally folded and contacted me. We agreed to terms and I came back with the understanding he would not talk to me like that anymore and I would finish my plans to complete my savings so I could secure my own place. After I moved out for good, allot of revelations came into full view, because you never appreciate what your folks do for you until you're the one paying to keep the toilets flushing and the lights on.

But in living on my own, both myself and my dad found common ground to speak. He understood I now had my own voice and had zero problem standing up for myself if he stepped on my toes. My other two brothers went on their way as well, but they never found their identity quite like I did so I ended up having the best relationship with my dad before he passed away. In fact we had a very loving relationship and mended most everything in my life by the time he passed. But along that journey I discovered allot of truths about life.

Society puts a hell of a lot of weight on labels. Father, mother, priest, counselor, son, daughter, etc. They all carry weight to their title and we all presume allot in what comes with those labels. Expectations are therefore very high and we place a builtin standard to what we should get for giving them those labels. Unfortunately we forget the one constant with all of these people in our lives. THEY'RE HUMAN BEINGS. That means they are flawed. That means they too have insecurities and issues from their life that shape them and make them the imperfect creatures that we all are.

But what this does is build up frustration in all of us. My dad grew up in the depression era, so he had to get pulled out of school to help raise the family when he was still a kid. He eventually got his high school diploma and even got a college degree (even though my mother did all the typing for his papers). But if I look at his life, he was never placed in a situation where someone asked him how he felt. If he felt cheated as a kid and had to start working so young. But I can see how it shaped him and gave him the inner turmoil that sometimes came out the wrong way. I can see how that frustration got placed on everyone else.

Now does that mean he gets a pass for what he said? Of course not. But me and him addressed that and we made peace with it, which means I had to make peace with how I viewed myself because of it. I now had to OWN how I saw myself and no longer point to others for my self-worth. What I developed along the way are two rules I live by every day. And these both exist not only from my experiences with my father but how I took all of that shame in.

Number one rule for myself - " I ONLY CONTROL MYSELF." This means that no matter what is going on in life or what others do to me or if they make mistakes that I don't agree with, I can only manage how I react to them. I can't fix other people's problems, but I can choose how I want to respond to them and govern my actions so I don't wear the weight of those issues and make negative impacts, when I should be focused on being as positive as I can be.

The second rule for myself - "NEVER LET THE WORDS OF OTHERS OWN YOU." The problem we have in today's society, especially on social media, is we allow what other's say impact who we think we are. That's a huge mistake. You as a person should have a guarded front door to your soul. You should never walk into this world with an open book belief. YOU determine your self-worth. YOU decide which opinions carry weight and which ones should be discarded. Anybody can say anything. But ultimately it is up to each of us what we choose to believe. If we use labels as some kind of value system for who's right and who's wrong, we've already lost.

The labels we place on others do not provide wisdom, good intentions, or even foreshadow potential for where we go in life if we blindly follow their judgement over our own. If you allow other people to get you down and make you feel inferior, YOU have done that yourself because you chose to belief what they said was true. Take that authority back and do your own self analysis. If you need to make improvements then be tough on yourself, but do it to get you to where you need to be, not to shame yourself.

And the people who are feeding you falsehoods about who you are? Forget them. Get them out of your life until they can find a place or a voice that respects who you are. Don't believe for five seconds you have to keep them around because of a label. Sometimes time and space makes all the difference as it did with me and my father. It's hard to find objectivity when the space you share is too tight. So don't be afraid to move outside of familiar networks of people if the messaging is all counter productive. At the end of the day we are all human beings. We are all flawed. But only we know who we are on the inside. Protect that space. Make yourself the best you can be, but most of all be honest with what you see of yourself and others. Keep it real and keep it true. You do that and life will be a much better place when you have that clarity.
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#8

Postby Alex4 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 5:12 pm

Livetowin,
I won't call you lucky, because certainly no one should be treated in such a manner. What I will say is that though shy in the beginning, you found the strength to deal with a problem that often requires professional help as well as supportive friends. It is difficult to tell tone of voice in writing, but it sounds like there may be a bit of anger still in there. If that is what it took to bring you back from a relationship based on the controlling parent's need to dominate so be it. Your words have wisdom, and though some personalities might not be able to do what you did, your words are definitely encouraging and hopeful. Seeing how another in a very similar situation pull out of it and regain control of your own life can be a powerful tool.

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#9

Postby Livetowin » Thu Feb 09, 2017 2:54 pm

Alex4 wrote:Livetowin,
I won't call you lucky, because certainly no one should be treated in such a manner. What I will say is that though shy in the beginning, you found the strength to deal with a problem that often requires professional help as well as supportive friends. It is difficult to tell tone of voice in writing, but it sounds like there may be a bit of anger still in there. If that is what it took to bring you back from a relationship based on the controlling parent's need to dominate so be it. Your words have wisdom, and though some personalities might not be able to do what you did, your words are definitely encouraging and hopeful. Seeing how another in a very similar situation pull out of it and regain control of your own life can be a powerful tool.

Alex4


I appreciate your kind words Alex4. I imagine somewhere in me there is some residual anger. But these days I like to believe it's more assertiveness and determination. Typically with anger you are unfocused and out of control. When you are assertive and determined, you are driven to a goal.

I just believe that empowerment is solely up to you. Most problems these days are born from people empowering others when they should be taking control of themselves. We all use labels to define the parameters of people in our lives. But when those people fail us or begin to do harm to our lives, we must understand we can change how those people impact us. Simply having a label does not give them free reign to do as they please. Many people do not realize that.

Sometimes time and space is what is needed between people to find clarity. If there is strong love in those bonds, those people will find their way back to one another. But we must always realize that our most prized possession is within us. We must covet our identity and nurture it. That means keeping out the bad and promoting the good (both in our own deeds and from those who service our best interests as well). We control all of that.
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