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#425485 - 02/16/13 12:58 PM A little advice needed
jay75 Offline


Registered: 07/23/12
Posts: 145


I posted on the progress form about how I have been letting go of anger directed towards my father for not being there for me for not protecting me for abandonment. I outlined how I've been able to speak to him on the phone and be very cordial and civil. Well I'm in a different place today. I put aside time this summer so that myself and my family can go visit an elderly family member. My father caught wind of this and invited himself to meet us in the state that this family member lives in. I am in no way happy about this my stomach is in knots and I felt that anger boil to the surface. I have seen this man a total of 3 times in the last 22 years and every time I see him I am an absolute wreck, I end up with stomach issues before during and after the visit, it is always a very unpleasant experience for me.

I want to tell him that his presence is not needed nor is it desired, but I do not know how to approach the situation. On one hand I'd rather say go f*** yourself there is no way I'm going to meet with you, and on the other hand Who Am I to deny him the right to see his grandchildren. I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place right now and I do not know how to put my feelings aside AGAIN! Should I even have to put my feelings aside for him and for my children?

This is the second time I'm writing this post I have had to clean it up alot. The "F" bomb flows like water over my keypad when I'm this pissed.

another thing is I don't even know why I am concerned about his feelings why the f*** should I even care? but in some sick f****** way I do. this all just seems like way too much for me right now especially while this is all so raw.

So much for progress......

-Jay-

I know this post sounds somewhat childish I apologize.
_________________________
"Those are not your sins" A wise man

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#425489 - 02/16/13 02:16 PM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
Jude Offline


Registered: 08/09/12
Posts: 1466
Loc: New England
Hey Jay,

Nothing childish about it. We're all angry. Many of us have had to distance ourselves from relatives to maintain our sanity. And many of us have a hard time putting OURSELVES ahead of someone else's feelings. Even when its someone who has shown little caring for us.

So let the F bombs crop. Then do what you need to, to keep YOURSELF sane and healthy. You deserve to be first sometimes.

Jude
_________________________
"But now old friends are acting strange,
they shake their heads, they say I've changed.
Something's lost but something's gained in living every day
....it's life's illusions I recall, I really don't know life at all. "
Joni Mitchell

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#425496 - 02/16/13 06:37 PM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
thirteen Offline


Registered: 08/17/11
Posts: 44
Loc: sweden
My dad wasn't there much as I grew up. He is sorry about it and has apologized, he started of by saying that he's not very good when it comes to talk about feelings. He did it his way and we now have a much better relationship though we are still working on it.

I always wanted to be like him when I grew up, always wanted him to be proud of me and so on, and I always made the wrong decisions and ended up in the wrong places. So this was, although very weird and awkward, a good thing for me.

I'm saying this because I don't know what your story is with or without him but maybe ask yourself WHY you are angry? Because he wasn't around? Then, while you of course have the right to be angry, at least now he tries to be around. We all make mistakes and like I said I don't know your story so it's hard to say this without the chance it'll seem "bad" from your point of view.

Are you angry because the abandonement led to a fucked up life on your behalf? That's a bit of how it was for me, then again, sure it might have "helped" aim me in this direction, but it wasn't his fault. The abuse and other things I lived through wasn't because of him, so how can I blame him for that?

For not being around, yeah, I can. But hey, at least now he's changed. And with a child on the way, it seems that although I'm in a bad situation with all of this, my child will have a grandfather.

So, ask yourself why you are angry. If part of the anger is from things that aren't his fault, then MAYBE you might want to give him a second chance. Then again, even so, as Jude said you need to do what you need to do.

If he really "deserves" all your anger, or just enough of it, for you to not wanting to be around him, then that's the way it has to be, at least for now. Just make sure you don't regret it later when it's too late.

No matter what you do, take care and good luck

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#425503 - 02/16/13 09:52 PM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
txb Offline


Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 181
I don't really have any advice for dealing with the situation. But you said this:

Originally Posted By: jay75
Who Am I to deny him the right to see his grandchildren.


And i just think, what right does he have to see his grandchildren? Just because someone has your genes it doesn't give them any right to anything. You've seen him 3 times in 22 years. It's hardly like he's made an effort. I don't know the backstory of it all but is he even someone you want your children to meet? (I grew up without any grandparents - i believe most of them are still alive, but i've just never met them. It never bothered me.) Sounds like meeting him is just going to ruin your time away, so I'd go with the "go f*** yourself option". But like you said it's easier said than done. (and I don't think you sounded childish at all, I think you sounded perfectly reasonable)

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#425521 - 02/17/13 03:20 AM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
Lancer Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Mixed bag here, Jay. Nor, in a quick read of some of your other posts, am I quite clear on the relationship with your father.

As far as his grandkids...well, they're YOUR kids, not his. What is real obvious is that you're a man of considerable conscience as a husband, father...and son.

Two of my own experiences.

Dad was a fun-loving, horny drunk. He left to marry a woman who treated me as one of her own.

That probably saved my sanity because I was stuck with the mommybitch who had custody of me...considerable drinking of her own, physical, verbal and emotional abuse. Eventually she and her third husband pretty much delivered me to my perp.

Dad found sobriety. And worked his program like no one I've ever met. Our relationship blossomed the last ten years of his life.

I haven't had anything to do with the mommybitch in almost 25 years. I imposed a no-contact restriction on her. And my reaction to her, John, was EXACTLY like yours. (I later discovered, clinically speaking, it's likely she's a textbook narcissist or NPD). She hadn't changed and as far as I'm concerned she can rot.


I can't advise you. I don't know your father's interest or lack of or the reasons. But, three times in 22 years? I'd like to know more about the nature of your phone convos with him and any insight you might have. If anything, imo, caring for yourself and your family is the priority. Your father is not.

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#425527 - 02/17/13 05:12 AM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 1892
Loc: durham, north england
Hi.

I agree absolutely with txb. if blood is thicker than water that's why it forms a scum on the top laugh.

Funnily enough, my dad actually was semi disowned by his father too, indeed I never even met the man though I know my dad spoke to him on the phone before he died, and would certainly much rather my dad was happy than he ended up ill because of some random old geezer. in fact on the rare occasions when he comes up in conversation my brother and I refer to my dad's parents by name, not as grand parents at all, indeed we didn't have any grand parents while we grew up and though we've met various aunts, uncles and cousins have very little in common with most of them and likely when our parents aren't around anymore wont see any of them again.

Your post also didn't sound childish at all, so no need to appologize.


Edited by dark empathy (02/17/13 05:19 AM)

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#425531 - 02/17/13 07:48 AM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
jay75 Offline


Registered: 07/23/12
Posts: 145
.
_________________________
"Those are not your sins" A wise man

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#425534 - 02/17/13 08:34 AM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
jay75 Offline


Registered: 07/23/12
Posts: 145
Hey guys,

first off thank you for the responses, it offered great insight into my delema. I know I did not go into my past dealings with my father so I'm going to throw some crap out there now. last night I did as Thirteen suggested try to figure out why I am so angry, well needless to say I did not have to dig too damn deep.

My father was both emotionally and verbally and physically abusive towards me. he often made comparisons between my brother and myself, I of course always came up with the short end of the stick. my brother was in all around athlete a man's man somebody my father could identify with. Me on the other hand I was a very sensitive 9 year old who just lost his mother she had passed away suddenly, my father detested me he would often refer to me as a little faggot, queer, cry baby so on and so forth. I think the verbal abuse was 1000 times worse than the physical abuse it hurt more and left deep scars. In a way, yes I do blame him for what happened to me I believe that it helped to condition me very much so to accept the abuse. I believe the way he treated me, made me believe that my abuser saw what my father saw in me (a little faggot) and so I believed it was my fault. long story short there are just so many layers to the story. I left home at 12 ran the streets with friends, drowned myself in alcohol and drugs. Never worried about any consequences because I would prefer to have been dead at that point. The last time I was with my father as a teenager he had what he considers a heart to heart discussion with me that included me getting slapped across the face repeatedly and him asking if I like girls or wanted suck a dick. That all came about because I showed great enthusiasm when the cable went out during a football game, and only a faggot would be happy about that.

Now I have 4 very smart well rounded sons. I'm pretty sure they are everything my father has ever wanted for himself or wish he had in me as a son. Yes I do see that he is making an effort to reconcile in some way but I do not believe it something I even want.

-Jay-
_________________________
"Those are not your sins" A wise man

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#425536 - 02/17/13 08:56 AM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
jay75 Offline


Registered: 07/23/12
Posts: 145
@Jude,
You are 100% right, im not sure why I care about his feelings I seem to care to much when he didnt care about me.. It is time to think about me! Thanks .

@Thirteen I posted above a little back story. Im glad you found common ground with your father. I know the importance of family and maybe one day I will get there... Thanks.

@Txb & Dark empathy Thanks for the words, your right, he has no right to see my kids. the truth is he gave that up a long time ago.

@Lancer, it's funny you bring up the nature of our phone calls and the conversations that we have. the conversations to say the least are very awkward he tries to engage me and I'm somewhat off putting with my answers. he will try to reminisce about the good old days and I'll slap in the face with what reality actually was. but at the same time I do have to admit it but I don't believe I hate the man I don't wish any ill will. I do know that I need time to process, accept and forgive before we are to meet again. Thanks

Thanks guys for sharing your experiences.

-Jay-
_________________________
"Those are not your sins" A wise man

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#425590 - 02/17/13 03:38 PM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
Lancer Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Thanks for the addtl info Jay. Not unlike my mommybitch experience, so I'll expand on it as it might be what you're feeling.

What I struggled with before/after I cut her off was that, abusive as she was, she'd been the mother figure and a woman who was part of my history from Day One. It felt as though if I cut her off, I was cutting off a part of myself and that I should feel guilty about that.

I also realize today it was also part of her training/conditioning of me. She'd act hurt or somesuch just to reel me back in for another round...which sounds very similar to what you experienced with the calls. She'd even sometimes engage one or two of her girl buddies to call me. I knew what was up and, sometimes not so politely, hung up on them.

Strangely, it wasn't until I cut her off, weaned myself from the nostalgia (a T would call it grieving I guess), that I really started to process how abusive she'd truly been and the abusive events became clearer. And her manipulation became something I could feel, dread and avoid, not just clinically acknowledge.

fwiw, yeah, there's a part of me that wishes it could be different, that there must be something I can do to resolve it, etc., etc. But she'll never change without some serious psychiatric help (no chance of that) - as much as I might wish it - and the best I can do is get on with my life without her emotionally toxic bullshit.

In fact I cannot believe the similarities in our feelings and thought processes. It feels like you were telling my story. I rarely identify THIS closely with one of my brothers' stories, but you just nailed it.

One of my favorite movies is Bette Davis in "Now Voyager" in which she's the verbally/emotionally abused, bespectacaled daughter of a rigid old bat. Even when the old bat is squarely confronted in front of everyone by psychiatrist Claude Rains, it makes no difference. Davis gets treatment, goes on a cruise and comes back a ravishing Bette Davis. I particularly like it because, unlike "Mommy Dearest", a considerable portion of the movie is devoted to the emotional recovery of Davis' character.

That said, I think you have my answer - aw fuck it - on the whole thing and some considerable empathy.

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#425612 - 02/17/13 07:07 PM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3296
Loc: back in the USA
Jay - did we have the same dad? wait - that's right - mine was a step-dad - so maybe we are really half-brothers. i could have written what you said here:

Originally Posted By: jay75
My father was both emotionally and verbally and physically abusive towards me. he often made comparisons between my brother and myself, I of course always came up with the short end of the stick. my brother was in all around athlete a man's man somebody my father could identify with. Me on the other hand I was a very sensitive 9 year old who just lost his mother she had passed away suddenly, my father detested me he would often refer to me as a little faggot, queer, cry baby so on and so forth. I think the verbal abuse was 1000 times worse than the physical abuse it hurt more and left deep scars. In a way, yes I do blame him for what happened to me I believe that it helped to condition me very much so to accept the abuse. I believe the way he treated me, made me believe that my abuser saw what my father saw in me (a little faggot) and so I believed it was my fault. long story short there are just so many layers to the story.


main difference was that i had lost my father - not mother - and i was the oldest of 4 boys - the 2 youngest being half-brothers. the perfect older son i was compared to was his dead son. but enough about me.

what i really wanted to emphasize was the part about the verbal abuse being as bad or worse than the physical. and that it conditioned us for later abuse by others. for me - there was CSA at home too - so that made it almost a given that i'd be a likely target. and - YES - i still blame him.

i allowed him (with my mom) to see each of our 2 older kids on very limited, infrequent and totally supervised occasions. 3 times for the older and 2 for the younger - that was in the space of about 3 1/2 years. he died before our 3rd was born. i was greatly relieved that i didn't have to deal with it anymore. no - i never confronted him about what he'd done - or revealed what had happened to me at school and scouts - which later vulnerability to abuse i see as at least partially because of what he'd done to me. but i know it would have always been difficult to be around him - even if all of that was on the table - in fact knowing his refusal to admit "mistakes" - it probly would have created an even bigger rift.

i guess - with the amount of perspective and progress i've achieved now - my tendency would be to say - NO - i will not see you - and here is why - and tell the truth. if i couldn't say it on the phone - i'd write it.

i know there cannot be a one-size-fits-all answer - but that's my take on it - for whatever it's worth.

Lee
_________________________
We are often troubled, but not crushed;
sometimes in doubt, but never in despair;
there are many enemies, but we are never without a friend;
and though badly hurt at times, we are not destroyed.
- Paul, II Cor 4:8-9

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#425617 - 02/17/13 08:10 PM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
Lancer Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Lee brings up an important point, Jay, and I'll expand on it.

I put the "no contact" in writing with a rigorously honest explanation. Unlike a call in which people often hear only what they want to hear, putting it in writing makes my points less prone to any subjective interpretation. There is no mistake in my language, meaning or tone...and it's a permanent record.

Doesn't matter what, if anything they did with it, they had to read it. The issues raised were unmistakable. If they wanted to fabricate stories after the fact to protect their egos - likely - so be it. They certainly couldn't show the letter to anyone without blowing their own cover. All that mattered to me was making the point in black and white.

The mommybitch and hubby #3 were bullies and cowards whose selfish, irresponsible actions created a situation that delivered me to my perp. And that's exactly what I called them in the letter (to their faces, if you will). Their refusal to deal with it and sacrifice me for the sake of their own egos is proof of it.


A few years later I found in an Interweb search that, shortly after when she would have received the letter, the mommybitch had made a humongous $200 donation to a local shelter for abused kids...ummm, this is a woman living in a country club McMansion. And that was the extent of her paying off her conscience.

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#425683 - 02/18/13 10:20 AM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
jay75 Offline


Registered: 07/23/12
Posts: 145
Lancer,

You are right, "nostalgia", its amazing how a word can sum it up. It pains me to see so many others go through these struggles. It is incredible how strained relationships between both parents and children can have such lasting effects. I do want to thank you for sharing your experiences I know how incredibly difficult it is to share them at times. and I totally receive your answer loud and clear!!!!!! its time for me to heal and pull back reflect before I can continue with any relationshipwith him.

-Jay-
_________________________
"Those are not your sins" A wise man

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#425684 - 02/18/13 10:34 AM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
jay75 Offline


Registered: 07/23/12
Posts: 145
Lee,

I have given it some thought, and I am going to put it in writing. I started last night and I am going to take some time to thoroughly write it out. I want to be as clear and concise and be able to fully express my feelings without sounding like a belligerent fool, as that can happen very easily. you are right there is not a 1 size fits all answer but it's fitting in this case. as I told Lancer and everyone else that posted on this forum thank you for sharing your experiences I know it can be very trying especially when writing it down because you have it staring you right back in the face.

As for half brothers, ill take that. Ive never had a brother I could talk to. lol. Thanks again Lee...

-Jay-
_________________________
"Those are not your sins" A wise man

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#425740 - 02/18/13 07:03 PM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3296
Loc: back in the USA
Jay - sounds like a good idea. a couple of additional suggestions:

after you finish putting it all into words, let it sit for a day or two and then read it again with fresh eyes. you may want to edit or rewrite, add or delete some parts. it is often better not to shoot it off immediately because in the heat of the moment we may say things that can be minunderstood.

if there is anyone you trust to read it and give feedback, that may also be helpful. a more objective perspective can be very useful in finding out if you have communicated what you want to say.

it is a scary thing to do - but also very empowering.
please let us know how it goes.
all the best,
Lee
_________________________
We are often troubled, but not crushed;
sometimes in doubt, but never in despair;
there are many enemies, but we are never without a friend;
and though badly hurt at times, we are not destroyed.
- Paul, II Cor 4:8-9

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#425826 - 02/19/13 09:54 AM Re: A little advice needed [Re: jay75]
Zug Offline


Registered: 02/18/13
Posts: 56
Loc: Progress
I have as little contact with my immediate family as possible because of the pain and the way I was treated. I have similar feelings of resentment and abandonment with my dad. We have attempted to have some kind of relationship as adults, but there is too much in the way. For most people, family is who they rely on, can trust, etc. My experience has been exactly the opposite when it comes to family, even the ones not involved in the abuse, the things we're confronting are too dangerous for them. I have noticed that the less contact I have with immediate family (ma,dad, sis, etc) the more progress I make in recovery (sobriety and C/A SA). It about me now, I carried their shit for long enough. I can't be free if I remain tied to all of that horror and behavior they use to keep it rolling. That's just me, but walking away from literally EVERYTHING in my life has been required for me to get away. Just my .02
_________________________
"what matters most is how well you walk through the fire"
-Charles Bukowski


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