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  1. #1
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    Abusive parent??

    Hi everyone,
    This is my very first post in this forums.
    If i did or say something wrong, I apologize and feel free to point out my mistake.

    I have lots of problems with my family, especially my father.
    And I really think there are no one around me that can help or offer advice in an unbiased way.

    My father rules the household like a dictator.
    Whatever he wants, all of us, his wife and children, have to abide by it.
    If we show any signs of resistance, he'll throw a fit like a child.
    What makes things worse is that he can't seem to contain his anger to the person that caused it.

    For example, if i did something wrong or do not want to do what he ask, and he is mad at me because of it, instead of getting angry with me or shout at me, he will get angry and shout at everyone else in the house BUT me. Me, he just ignored until i succumb and apologize to him and do what he wants. Even after I do that, it is no guaratee that he will not be angry anymore.

    My problem now becomes double. Not only that i have to deal with my father's anger, i have to deal with everyone else's (my brothers and sisters) anger because, understandably, they are not happy being shout at for something that they do not do or do not understand. But they will somehow know that I caused it, and they in turn give me the cold shoulder.

    This also happens the other way around, when someone else is making the mistake, and I get burnt because of it. Most of the time I tried to ignore it, but sometime I cannot help myself and blame that person too.

    I really don't know what else to do. My mother unfortunately cannot help much. Her motto has always been: "Just do what your fahter said without question and your life will be fine." As I get older, this is getting harder to do. Especially when I finally realize that my plan for my life is very different than my father's plan for my life.

    I will be very grateful if anyone in this forum can give me any advice at all about my situation.

    Thank you very much for letting me post.
    Oddy.

  2. #2
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    Welcome to LifeSupporters Oddy, although I wish the circumstances would have been more pleasant.

    This is a very hard situations to be in.

    Your father is definitely abusive, and holding the family ransom with his tantrums. He has no right to act like some dictator who can do as he pleases, with disregard for everybody else.

    Your mother for whatever reason is condoning his behavior. She may have her reasons, but she should be supportive of the abused children (and herself). There might be a destructive dynamic between the two of them, but it is unlikely that if your mom condones his behavior that she will stop condoning it, unless something drastic happened.

    What you can do, depends on various things, such as your age, your school situation, etc. So we need more details on these things, in order to give you better and more detailed advice.
    The butterfly counts not months but moments, and has time enough. - Rabindranath Tagore

    Keep true to the dreams of your youth. - Friedrich Schiller

    The only philosophy which can be responsibly practised in face of despair is the attempt to contemplate all things as they would present themselves from the standpoint of redemption. - Theodor Adorno

  3. #3
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    First off, welcome to Lifesupporters. You have come to a very caring home on the web. I don't really know what I can say to help you but we are all here to listen and offer a shoulder. You didn't say how old you were and that is fine but just remember if you are 18 you are an adult and can make the decision to move out if you can make it on your own. You didn't say if your father was physically abusive. Getting mad at you and yelling is one thing but if he is violent that is quite another. Have you ever tried talking to him about this? You might try talking to him and telling him how you feel. I am sure some of the others will chime in here and let you know their opinion as well. Keep posting and let us get to know you better. We may not be able to fix your problem but we can certainly listen and sometimes that is what is needed most. Again welcome to our family Oddysseus.
    The brain is a wonderful organ; it starts working the moment you get up in the morning, and does not stop until you get to the office. (Robert Frost)

  4. #4
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    Thank you so much for the warm welcome. You have no idea what it means to me.

    I am really embarrased to say this. I am 30 years old and still live with my parents.

    This is partly because of the culture our family is in. An unmarried woman, like myself, cannot leave their her parents house. There are few loopholes, like when you go to school or have a job in another city. But generally, you have to get married (something that i don't intend to do, most likely, ever) if you want out of the house.

    I do have a job, and it pays adequately. My family is quite well-off, so with me still living with my parents, I am not really bothered with finacial matters.

    The problem is, my job IS a big part of my problem. I work with my family business. This doesn't only involve my parents, brothers and sisters, but also cousins, uncles, aunts, etc. The truth is I hate my job. And this job, along with all of the problems i have at home, has led me to depression several times before. When my manners becomes unbearable to
    my parents, they will send me to a psychiatrist to get treatment. But this never last long. As soon as i get a litte better, the treatment would stop. I have to admit, that i stopped going myself, my parents never told me to. It's just i always felt they are getting impatient if i go too the psychiatrist to long, so it makes me feel very uncomfortable of going. And my parents always show immense relief when i stop going. After that, it's like
    my problems never happened.

    During my past treatment, i have talked to my parents about my problem of working with the family. Because at that time i was sick, they seem willing to understand and willing to consider letting me go. But as soon as i looked well enough, they just ignore everything we have talked about and think everything is back to normal.

    Nowadays, i just cannot take it anymore. I can't even bear listening to anything remotely related to the family business. It just makes me loose temper and generally unpleasant. The trouble is, now my family REALLY cannot afford to let me go. One of my sister is having a serious illness, so someone (namely me) has to take over her place. I really understand the situation and that i have obligations to my family. But the thought of
    having to work with my father day in and day out, for the rest of my life, just depressed the heck out me. I feel so overwhelmed.

    The mistake I mentioned on my last post was that i told my father i just cannot do it anymore. I said it to him point blank. And he was very offended by it. Now he is throwing tantrum, ignoring me, and deliberately ruining my brother's very important plan (which my father must be involved in order to work) by saying that he just will not help my brother. He even told my mother, who then told my siblings, the reason why he did that: me.
    You can guess how my brother, understandbly, react to that news. Not that i'm surprised with this situation. My father have done this many' many times before. But it still hurts, especially when i know one of my sibling is annoyed or mad at me because of it.

    To answer TKDLady's question, my father never lay his hand on me or my sisters, ever. He may have hit my brothers with a belt when my brother was younger, but i was not there to witness it. He hardly ever shout at me anymore these days. But he never stops throwing his tantrums around the house. And that makes my home is not a happy one.

    I really don't know what to do now. I used to pity my father because since i have received treatment, i know that there's most likely something wrong with him physically (in his brain) and he can't help himself. But now, i can't even do that anymore.

    I'm really sorry if I post this long. It's just that, i have to get this off my chest.

    Again thank you for your warm welcome and kind words. Those alone already make me feel better. Oh, and if you think my post is too long, feel free to edit it.

    Best wishes and thanks,
    Oddy.

  5. #5
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    I don't think a post can ever be too long. When you have things to get off your chest then you just let it go. I am at a loss as to what advice I can give you. It sounds like you live somewhere other than the USA which is where I am. I am glad you don't get beat. If you lived in the US I would think you could just go look for another job, find somewhere else to live and move on. Your family may be angry with you at first but I think they would get over it soon enough. Another option may be college if you haven't already done so. Go away to college somewhere and let your life be your own then. This is just my opinion and it may be next to impossible for you. I don't know. If coming here and talking about it all helps then keep coming. We are all more than willing to help if we can and always here to listen. Good luck in what ever you decide to do Oddy.
    The brain is a wonderful organ; it starts working the moment you get up in the morning, and does not stop until you get to the office. (Robert Frost)

  6. #6
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    Quote Originally Posted by Oddysseus View Post
    The problem is, my job IS a big part of my problem. I work with my family business. This doesn't only involve my parents, brothers and sisters, but also cousins, uncles, aunts, etc. The truth is I hate my job. And this job, along with all of the problems i have at home, has led me to depression several times before.
    So the conflict is not only about your father's behavior. You are also torn between family obligations, and the family business and setting up life in a way you find more appropriate for yourself.

    I have to admit, that i stopped going myself, my parents never told me to. It's just i always felt they are getting impatient if i go too the psychiatrist to long, so it makes me feel very uncomfortable of going. And my parents always show immense relief when i stop going. After that, it's like my problems never happened.
    It seems not only you get uncomfortable with going (timewise), but also that you may feel the root of the problem is not you. A psychiatrist or psychologist can work on your problems, but not by proxy on the problems your father or mother, or whomever has.

    During my past treatment, i have talked to my parents about my problem of working with the family. Because at that time i was sick, they seem willing to understand and willing to consider letting me go. But as soon as i looked well enough, they just ignore everything we have talked about and think everything is back to normal.
    There is the crux. The same patterns are reoccuring shortly after treatment, which will get you nowhere.

    The trouble is, now my family REALLY cannot afford to let me go. One of my sister is having a serious illness, so someone (namely me) has to take over her place. I really understand the situation and that i have obligations to my family.
    Imagine (just as a thought experiment), what would happen if you stopped working in the family business, for one reason or another. How would the business cope? How would a replacement for you be found? Would the replacement put up with your father's behavior?

    Now he is throwing tantrum, ignoring me, and deliberately ruining my brother's very important plan (which my father must be involved in order to work) by saying that he just will not help my brother. He even told my mother, who then told my siblings, the reason why he did that: me.
    And with that he is contributing to the downfall of the family business, even though he is oblivious to the fact. Everybody will be miserable because of all this, get sick, one way or the other, and the family business will suffer as a result. His behavior is not the way forward, but he is probably too stressed to even see that.

    I used to pity my father because since i have received treatment, i know that there's most likely something wrong with him physically (in his brain) and he can't help himself. But now, i can't even do that anymore.
    Which is completely understandable. You can pity someone for his misfortunes, but it is impossible to pity someone when you suffer the brunt of that person's rage, anger etc.. The natural reaction is to look for a way out of that situation.

    Any chance that a discussion with other family members who also suffer at his hands will yield a positive outcome? It is one thing when one or two people complain about his behavior, but it becomes a different matter when only one or two people defend his behavior.

    If not, you may need to look for a place of your own, and perhaps also need to apply for a job outside of the family business, as heartbreaking as it may be, to you and your family.

    Sanity has no price. If noone is willing to listen to your concerns and address them one way or another, and allow your father to drive you and your relatives insane, then it may be best to opt out of that. But I know that is easier said than done, even moreso given your family's culture.
    The butterfly counts not months but moments, and has time enough. - Rabindranath Tagore

    Keep true to the dreams of your youth. - Friedrich Schiller

    The only philosophy which can be responsibly practised in face of despair is the attempt to contemplate all things as they would present themselves from the standpoint of redemption. - Theodor Adorno

  7. #7
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    TKDLady and Vautrin, thank you so much for your kind words and advice.

    You're right TKDLady, I don't live in the USA. I went to college there, though. Very nice country. But it is my parents' condition that I must go back home after I graduated and I did. I just don't have enough guts to say no to them.

    Besides, if I do defy them, who knows will get burnt because of my action. My father once threatened to cut off my sisters' allowance (when they're going to school abroad) because he had problems with my brother. With my brother...who at that time lives here. And my sisters, half a world away, and had no idea about what was going on, had to frantically get a double job to make sure they still can afford tuition just in case my father made good on
    his words. Words fail me.

    And Vautrin, everything you said is true. This problem within my family has been going on so long that everything you said has crossed my mind one time or another.

    Except for this part:
    It seems not only you get uncomfortable with going (timewise), but also that you may feel the root of the problem is not you. A psychiatrist or psychologist can work on your problems, but not by proxy on the problems your father or mother, or whomever has.
    I have never thought of it that way. Most of the time, I just feel that's my parents finally got it that I'm sick, and everything at home seems fine, and that i have nothing else to say to my psychiatrist. But what you said actually makes sense of the whole situation.

    Imagine (just as a thought experiment), what would happen if you stopped working in the family business, for one reason or another. How would the business cope? How would a replacement for you be found? Would the replacement put up with your father's behavior?
    And with that he is contributing to the downfall of the family business, even though he is oblivious to the fact. Everybody will be miserable because of all this, get sick, one way or the other, and the family business will suffer as a result. His behavior is not the way forward, but he is probably too stressed to even see that.
    My father IS a very defensive man. He never thinks he's in the wrong. And when he does admit he's wrong, he still thinks that he made the mistake because someone else's fault. You know what i mean?

    About the downfall, that's one of the reason why i want to leave. It's like I already sense the ship is sinking and want to get into a lifeboat. I just don't have the mental strenght or enough courage to deal with any family break up that may occur in the future. I mean, my family, and not just the immediate ones, is very important to me.

    But then again, I may have to wait for a looooong time before anybody else gets sick of my father's behaviour. My family elders (Aunts and Uncles) put up with him for more than 30 YEARS! And my cousins do too, when they start joining the business. I know that they don't like it, but just as hopeless as I am. I once talked to my uncle, who is older than my father, about this destructive behaviour. My uncle just said that my father is like that and there's nothing we can do about it. So I just have to cope with it.

    Any chance that a discussion with other family members who also suffer at his hands will yield a positive outcome? It is one thing when one or two people complain about his behavior, but it becomes a different matter when only one or two people defend his behavior.
    I think this is hopeless Vautrin. We did this before. My mom and the kids would talked our heart out, but no one is brave enough to confront him directly. Not together anyway. Once in awhile, one of us would get fed up and burst. But the ending is always the same, we would "compromise" (in my family this means that father will get what he wanted anyway).

    I just don't think you can talk to a guy who said it plainly that "He will not change. He does not want to change. And God help the people who try to make him change." I swear those were his words...well, the English translation of them anyway.

    I used to count on my mom to help me and my siblings dealing with my father. When my father's tantrum affect the whole house, including her, she can be so understanding even supportive to what the children have to say. But once my father cools off, my mother would change her mind and tell the kids to "just do what my father says". That sort of makes me angry at her most of the time.

    I really wish I can leave the house. Get a job some place else. Lately I have gathered a little bit of courage to do just that. Then, my sister got ill. It's not her fault and i never thought of blaming her. She's my closest sister and all I feel right now is that I grieve for her condition. But this does put me in a difficult situation. I have to stay. For Her. Because she asked me to. But I have no idea how long i can last. During my depression, I always thought that death is the only way out of this mess. Now I'm starting to feel that way again.

    well, thanks again for letting me pour my heart out. You guys are so great. I really wish there are lots more people like you out there.
    Oh, do you mind if I asked how and why you guys start this wonderful site? It's probably in the FAQ, I'm gonna check that later.

    Best wishes and thanks again,
    Oddy.

  8. #8
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    I am sorry for your situation Oddy. Death isn't the answer though so be patient, wait until your sister is better and try again to move on. As for why the site was started Duke will have to give you the full answer but the short of it, at least to my understanding is, he felt the need to help others due to situations in his past and decided to start this site. The site was 4 years old in July. I joined almost 3 years ago and have never regretted it. Keep coming back. Vent if you have to. We are here to help and be a shoulder for you. I know for me talking helped when things were rough. Take care and see you around.
    The brain is a wonderful organ; it starts working the moment you get up in the morning, and does not stop until you get to the office. (Robert Frost)

  9. #9
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    First of all a .

    The situation does not look good Oddy. It seems you have looked into all options and tried them, but with no substantial success.

    Then, my sister got ill. It's not her fault and i never thought of blaming her. She's my closest sister and all I feel right now is that I grieve for her condition.
    Of course it is not her fault. From the way you word it, I gather it is a chronic or severe ailment.

    I really wish I can leave the house. Get a job some place else. Lately I have gathered a little bit of courage to do just that. [...] But this does put me in a difficult situation. I have to stay. For Her. Because she asked me to. But I have no idea how long i can last.
    And this will affect your health negatively. Which also affects your ability to be there for your sister, to find the mental energy to be supportive of her, and the same holds for the work you do in the family business.

    That is something which may slightly help you, in a strange way (although I doubt your dad can be convinced of it). If you could convince your dad of the benefits of you working outside of the family company (e.g. beneficial effects on your health; not to mention that the family itself becomes a bit less dependent on the family company, which may be a good thing if the company hits hard times), then you could remain close to your sister, while not being exposed to your dad's anger for as much time as you currently are.

    An unmarried woman, like myself, cannot leave their her parents house. [...]But generally, you have to get married (something that i don't intend to do, most likely, ever) if you want out of the house.
    I am not going to suggest marriage for marriage's sake. That would only backfire, since your heart would not be in it. I know it is a loaded question, and I hope you can forgive me for that: Is there a particular reason you do not have the intention to marry?

    During my depression, I always thought that death is the only way out of this mess. Now I'm starting to feel that way again.
    I know it is very hard, but try and remain positive. There must be ways out of the situation, but they may require time and patience.
    The butterfly counts not months but moments, and has time enough. - Rabindranath Tagore

    Keep true to the dreams of your youth. - Friedrich Schiller

    The only philosophy which can be responsibly practised in face of despair is the attempt to contemplate all things as they would present themselves from the standpoint of redemption. - Theodor Adorno

  10. #10
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    Oddy, ive watched this thread for a while, and i apologise for not having posted sooner!

    first off a HUGE BIG HUG from the UK to wherever you might be.

    i cant say i know much about family business's nor childish tantrum throwing fathers. but i do know more then my fair share about mental illness.

    its obvious theres a problem if your constantly going back and forth from a psychiatrist because of problems with your father. but being on and off medicaton isnt good for your well beging.

    nor is staying in a situation that refuses to change for the better. I understand how you feel when you say sometimes it feels like death is the only way out, but thats not always the case.

    you need to eliminate either living with your parents, or working with them. id of said both but i know that is a very hard thing to achieve at once.

    is it possible to find a place to live on your own? or even with another sibling? rent a flat or house out nearby but continue to work within the family business? this would mean your still very much a part of the family, still helping your sister out, but at the same time, giving yourself a bit of freedom from the tantrums that your father continues to throw.

    i understand love for family can make things difficult to do. like leaving the family home. but by staying and doing what your father says, he has ultimatly won power over yourself and your family.

    he knows that if you dont do what he says he'll throw a tantrum, and bully someone else to get his own way. if you say your moving out and he says "im going to cut off your brother allowence" just say ok and walk away, dont rise to him, dont let him manipulate, and if he does cut off your brothers allowence, is it possible for you to help pay it?

    you cannot keep letting him manipulate and bully you, but only YOU can stop it by taking action.

    good luck oddy *hug*

  11. #11
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    First off let me extend a very warm welcome to you Oddy and thank you for sharing with us. Hopefully we can find a way together to help get you through this tough time.

    I've been reading through this post and in all honesty I've been getting sicker by the moment. For the life of me I can't fathom how a person can clearly make those close to him miserable and not want to change, it's ridiculous. All it does is show a complete lack of respect for those around you yet many abusive people seem to demand respect in return, it's crazy.

    If you don't mind my saying Oddy, I really think your family is enabling your father to continue in his course of action. Forgive me for saying but it seems like he's throwing an adult temper tantrum and everyone just lets him get away with it to shut him up. The sad truth is that if he continually gets his own way there really is no reason for him to change.

    The only suggestion I could offer is that the family needs to unite and clearly demonstrate a boundary that he is not to cross. He can be mad at everyone in this event but he'll be mad alone because he'll likely have no one around him.

    A part of me thinks you should have your entire family register here and we'll try and convince them that a group is much stronger than an individual and pr0lly your best bet for effective communication.

    I'm not sure if this is feasible to be honest but unless your family unites I don't think these little battles will do much good.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oddysseus View Post
    Oh, do you mind if I asked how and why you guys start this wonderful site? It's probably in the FAQ, I'm gonna check that later.
    The idea of this site is well over 12 years old. I was having trouble dealing with the separation of my fiancee and the fact that I was no longer going to live with my daughter. I started drinking heavily and doing all I could to eliminate the pain but the more I tried to cover up the more I ultimately hurt.

    Over the next 8 years I decided to stay primarily single (for the first time since my teens) and put some work into me but depression was never far off. I did manage to say goodbye to booze however and continued to work on myself but the problem was much of my issues were bottled up and I couldn't find a vehicle to face these demons without fear of reprisals.

    For this reason I put up Lifesupporters.com on July 3, 2004 because I felt a site such as this could help me get it off my chest and maybe provide a non-judgmental and supportive foundation for others to do the same.

    It's been 4 years now and the road has not always been smooth but what makes it worth wile is welcoming new members such as yourself to our family.
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  12. #12
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    Re: Abusive parent??

    Everyone...

    I'm just so overwhelmed by all of your support. You have no idea what a relief it is to find that there are other people who thinks like i do and actually symphatatic to what i've been through. For a long time i always thought that i'm the only one in my family that's not right. Me and my siblings all grew up in the same house, raised by the same two people, treated equally (good and bad). But i'm the only one that has nervous break downs. I'm the only one who thought of suicide 24/7 for the past decade. I'm the only one who has to go to head-doctors. Im the only that went nuts over this. My other sibilings are just fine. If they are having a tough time with what happened in our family, they're sure handling it better than i do.

    I just want you to know how grateful I am to all of you. (Hi Pepsichic and Duke!). Reading your words...and realizing that not all of what i thought of this situation is wrong. Someone else's also having the same thought. Thanks a lot you guys. Back.

    You know, I have had three psychiatrists telling me the same thing: that what happened to me is not really my fault. That I truly am having an illness. I did not make it all up. And that my family, especially my parents (who unfortunately thinks that if you are not ill physically, then you're just making it up and therefore it's your own fault if you are miserable), should be more supportive of me with my treatment. But that doesn't comfort me half as much as reading this thread, hearing people actually tell it like it is.

    Vautrin, my sister's illness IS quiet severe. She has Pulmonary Hypertension, as a result of the Lupus illness she had have for years. But she's been accepted in a experimental treatment for PH and her conditions is quite stable. When first diagnosed, doctors gave her 3 to 5 years left. But
    since then, we have met other patients with PH that still going strong after 10 or 15 years since their first diagnosis. So.....here's hoping.

    OT: If anyone here know anything about PH and its treatment, I will be very grateful if they can share it with me. /OT

    As to why I don't want to get married, i don't mind at all if you ask. A lot of people ask me that and my answer usually varies depending on who is asking and what my moods are at the time. But the simple truth is that I just don't want to. I am very conservatively raised and really believe
    that being married to someone means that you must be willing to share your life with someone else, to give up some of your freedom and to accept the fact that you will not be the only one who has the right to decide on how you should live your life. I know enough about myself that I am much too
    selfish to ever allow myself to do that. So what's the point?

    People told me that I can learn to compromise, and get used to it in time. It will get easier as time goes by, especially if you love that someone. But you know what? I have tried that with my parents, whom I love very very much and in turn love me very very much too, and look what happened to me now!

    is it possible to find a place to live on your own? or even with another sibling? rent a flat or house out nearby but continue to work within the family business?
    Pepsichic, I've always wanted to get out of this house but never gathered enough nerves. I am, after all, was raised a spoilt pampered princess. I am not gonna kid myself and say i can leave the house anytime and just do without. Furthermore my culture, combined with my family's very conservative views, simply forbids an unmarried woman leaving her parents home until she is married. I once reckless enough to bring this possibity to my parents and they plainly dismiss it. It will bring shame to the whole family, especially to the woman's parents. It will also announce to the world
    that there's something very wrong with the family's relationship. Why else would a daugther leave the comfort of her parent's home? Especially when she has no husband yet and her job is in the same city. It's just not done. The family will not be able to bear the shame.

    One my doctors suggested that I move in with one of my relatives, which would be more acceptable in our society. But I know my relatives enough to know that no matter where they live, my father can still bully them too, although not as severe as he does in his own home. So i think it would not
    help much. Besides, to be honest, I think that bad as it is at my home, I still think I'll be better off there than at any of my relatives'.

    As for the job...It's kinda hard to explain, Pepsichic. But in this family, there is no lines at all between family life and the business. It's like the family IS the business. I don't know how else to explain it. It's inseparable. If you want to be in the famiy, then you have to be in the business. No way around it. For example, my youngest sister is earning her medical degree, with my parents' blessings. But once in awhile, when the business needs another hand to help, suggestions are made that she leaves medical school and helps out. When I first heard it, my blood was boiling. For all I know my sister might be okay with it (turned out she is NOT), but my family's disregard for other people's feeling when it comes to the business is just unbelievable. Even sons and daughters-in-laws are encouraged to leave their work and join us. Honestly, sometimes I think we're more of a cult than a business.

    If you don't mind my saying Oddy, I really think your family is enabling your father to continue in his course of action. Forgive me for saying but it seems like he's throwing an adult temper tantrum and everyone just lets him get away with it to shut him up. The sad truth is that if he continually gets his own way there really is no reason for him to change.
    That is a very fair assesment, Duke. I did mention that our family is quite well off. (But I, personally, am not.) The family business is quite big and successful. Not to belittle other family member's contributions, but most of the success did owe to my father's resourcefulness and hard work. I'd always figured that's why the other family members tolerate him they way they do. And of course there's the oft-told story that my father had led a hard life, working hard since he was a child, suffering poverty and bad health. My father's health is used as the main excuse to let him off most of the time. He does have heart problems and other complains. Younger members of the family are repeatedly told not to stress him out or make trouble for him, in case we cause his health to fail.

    And yet, my father really IS a brilliant businessman. A top-notch lobbyist. A man with great visions and hardly ever fail to achieve them. He managed to expand the family business from a small stall in the market into big companies with several branches. And he still have many expansion plans, of which all of his children MUST be a part. I think that's why my refusal offended him the way it did. Father is a very proud man. He simply cannot accept the fact that anyone, especially his own children, may not want to a part of his grand plan, no matter how grand they are.

    The only suggestion I could offer is that the family needs to unite and clearly demonstrate a boundary that he is not to cross. He can be mad at everyone in this event but he'll be mad alone because he'll likely have no one around him.
    Unfortunately this is not likely to happen. Like I said, everyone else doesn't seem to have any problems coping with my father's behaviour. From what I observed, what most of them do is to "just not care anymore". My father would throw a tantrum, and they would just shrug. As long as his rage
    doesn't mess with their plans, they're okay with it. They avoid him and wait until he cools off. I am the only one who can't do that yet. I easily feel guilty if anything goes wrong and cannot shake off the feeling that I'm responsible to do something to fix it. That's one of the reasons for my depression in the past.

    Like, now. My brother's plan is nearing it's deadline and my father is still sulking. My brother did not say anything to me directly but he is giving me a cold shoulder that is freezing by now. On top of that, my mother told me to just apologize to my father and do what he told. When I told her that I can't, she's giving me a cold shoulder too. To make matter worse, besides throwing tantrums, I think my father seems determine to make me feel guilty by making himself sick. He played computer games till late at night, so in the morning he would be all tired. He deliberately drives himself on long journeys when he should not, endangering himself, making the rest of us (especially mother) worried sick. I don't know...maybe I'm just paranoid. Maybe that's just his way of dealing with his stress and has nothing to do with me at all. But I can't help thinking that and feeling all guilty and uncomfortable with the situation. Really wish I don't, then I can think straight for a change and actually deal with this problem objectively.

    Still, after everything that I said, the truth is i CAN stand my father as a daughter, tantrums and all. I know deep down he's a loving man who doesn't know how to show it. When he's in his good mood, he can be the best father in the world. I care deeply for him and, although it's getting harder and harder everyday, I do feel sorry for him. Because I can see that he knows he's hurting himself and the rest of his family. And I do see that sometimes he's really sorry for what he's done but just can't stop himself from doing it again and again. Because I have been there myself, in a way, and I have a lot of expensive prescription drugs to prove it.

    But I simply CANNOT stand him as a business colleague and as a boss. It's just too hard. How can you worked with someone who can suddenly decide that he won't attend the business months at the time, leaving the place at a complete chaos, just because "he just had a fight with his wife" or "he
    is mad at his brother/son/daughters/nephews, etc."? If that's not enough, if during his absence the rest of us does succeed in keeping the boat afloat, the moment he is back he will be so angry if he found out we have done something without clearing with him first or do something that's not according to his plan. When I first join the business after college and itness all of these, I am amazed how he managed to achieve all of his successes. Maybe he was not like this back then...I don't know, and no one seems to want to fill me in.

    I realize that there must be millions of bosses like him out there. But at least that boss is NOT your father. At least you do not have to know for sure WHY he is throwing a tantrum. And most of all, at least you can say enough is enough, I'm leaving" (which some of our senior staffs had done, actually). As the member of the family, I can't do that. I have to stay and cope.

    So if I have to choose, I would rather leave the business and still stay at the same house with my parents. Since it looks like that is not possible, I'd probably have to leave both the house and the family/business. I'm sure I will be able to keep my relationship with my siblings, but not sure about my parents.

    But all of you are right. This cannot go on. The more I think about it, the only way for me to keep my sanity is to be away from this house and this family as far away as possible. Even if it is only for awhile. Once I suggested to my doctor that she commits me to a mental hospital, just so I can get some peace and quiet. She just smiled and gave me words of encouragement. Oh, and more prescription drugs which I think really helped.
    (BTW, I'm not making fun of my doctor. She's a very nice lady who HAS helped me a lot.)

    Oh well....hopefully I don't lose my nerve to do this. And hopefully I can stop myself feeling too guilty about all of this. And if anyone can give me any suggestion on what my next step should be to, at least, clear off this current mess, I will be forever grateful.

    Again, sorry for the long post. I know TKDLady says that no post is too long (thanks for the encouragement), I still feel a bit uncomfortable writing this much on the board.

    Thanks again, all of you.
    Feeling better,
    Oddy

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    3,288

    Re: Abusive parent??

    Welcome Oddy

    You asked for some links on PH: Welcome to the Pulmonary Hypertension Association UK - PHA-UK

    During my past treatment, i have talked to my parents about my problem of working with the family. Because at that time i was sick, they seem willing to understand and willing to consider letting me go. But as soon as i looked well enough, they just ignore everything we have talked about and think everything is back to normal.......

    I'm the only one who thought of suicide 24/7 for the past decade. I'm the only one who has to go to head-doctors. Im the only that went nuts over this. My other sibilings are just fine. If they are having a tough time with what happened in our family, they're sure handling it better than i do....................

    I have no idea how long i can last. During my depression, I always thought that death is the only way out of this mess. Now I'm starting to feel that way again.
    Oddy, your family is controlling you by making you feel entirely responsible for their well being, at the continued expense of your own health and happiness. No wonder they were happy when you stopped going to the psychiatrists. Along with the lack of understanding of mental illness, it signalled to them that they could stop taking responsibility for their actions towards you and resume making you feel guilty for doing anything other than what they want. The others may find it hard, but they are not so easily manipulated into feeling guilty. Why is this guilt all one way? Why do you so easily shoulder the guilt when others don't want you to do things, when they are quite content to see you suffer?

    I understand all too well that you need to find solutions that keep you within the family and your culture's norms. Your father is unlikely to change. You have made promising starts - when getting some support from psychiatrists and most recently when you seemed to be considering other work. That shows that you can do it. Your's sister's illness is a setback, but you can only give what you can afford to give. You will do your sister no good if you become ill. Maybe your plans may have to be delayed, or the options of education or marriage may be more attractive if you explored them from the perspective of what is best for you, without committing to something that may make matters worse.

    Maybe your sister will have to accept that you can help her practically and emotionally, but that other people can be employed to do her work and that you need her support to help achieve this so that you can remain the support that she will need in future. PH is a very serious illness, you can not save her, but you can be strong now to make a plan for the future which means you can keep being there for her and being positive for her - that's what she'll need.

    If I were you I'd do the only thing that seems to force your family to see you as an individual - go back to the psychiatrists. See it as getting the support you need, the authority, to be allowed to have a happy life. Let them worry about you for a change and next time you find yourself getting upset because someones's in a rage, ask yourself - do they fix it when i am unhappy? The first step, oddy, is to make your relationships more equal by reducing the benefits to them of trying to walk all over you (non-compliance) and trying to get every compromise you make conditional on you getting something that you need to survive in good health.

    They do love you, but they see you as an extension of them. You need more, everyone does. If you are determined to stay within the fold, you need to learn the rules of engagement: It's all your fault. Your belief in this has made you ill - now you need to believe it less and start playing them at their own game. It's not a pleasant way to live, blaming others constantly, but it's all they respect. As is often the case, it's the child that can't conform, that expects people to behave decently, that internalises the problem, that believes the lie. You can't change them but you can change yourself.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    5

    Re: Abusive parent??

    Hello everyone.
    Thanks again for all of your support. Haven't written in awhile, too much is happening.

    Anyhow, just want to let you know that disaster is averted.
    My father somehow came to his senses and my brother's plan went okay. I have no idea how this happenened, but it did, and I'm glad.
    My brother is warming up to me again, and so is my mother. So everthing's pretty much back to normal. And this time, I don't have to feel miserable all misearble because i have to do things that i don't really want to.
    I really could not have done it without all of your encouragement and support. Without all of you and this wonderful site, I'm sure i'd just give in to my family's pressure.

    Right now, my father is still sulking, and now it's getting worse because now it actually
    affects his health. And my problems of leaving the business is still unresolved. But i figure, baby steps first.

    Meanon (Hi! Thanks for the welcome and advice), I am still seeing my latest psychiatrist. Not as often anymore, but still on regular basis. This time I'm determine to continue seeing her.
    Everyone here has said it one way or another that I can't depend on others to change their ways. Latest example: as her last attempt to persuade me to do what my father's demand, my mother tried to guilt me by saying "Don't you love your father? You must pity his condition."
    That's when it hits me. Yes, I do love my father, and I do pity him. But what about me? I know it sounds selfish, but I am having problems too. When I brought this up to mother, she simply refused to hear it and said it's all in the past. My father's problems are more urgent because they're hapenning now. That really made me more sad than angry. And I realize that my mother really will not change her views about the family situation and I just can't depend on her help anymore. So, since I know I cannot do this alone, I'll try to find help from others. You guys are certainly on the top of my list. And I hope i can continue to count on that.

    Thanks again everyone.
    Oddy.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
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    At Home
    Posts
    12,071

    Re: Abusive parent??

    We are always here for you Oddy. Sorry your mother is being so stubborn. Stick to your guns though and keep moving forward.
    The brain is a wonderful organ; it starts working the moment you get up in the morning, and does not stop until you get to the office. (Robert Frost)

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Somewhere over the rainbow!
    Posts
    26,558

    Re: Abusive parent??

    Welcome from Luba, Oddy, the reason I'm SO late in responding is I just returned from vacation this weekend, and am now just catching up as much as I can!

    First of all, you have come to the right place for tremendous support and SO many helpful ways to try to attempt to help!

    I'm just going to throw a lot of ideas your way and spin a different light on it. Since there 'seems' no way out at the moment, seeing your psychiatrist on a continual basis is good as suggested.

    What is your life like in your spare time? If you don't have much spare time, finding a way to have some may help considerably. Finding your Passion is something I feel you need to do. What are your friendships like? Do you go out and have fun with them? How about Church, Music or learning to play an Instrument, Dancing, Painting, Photography; Reading; Courses in languages or anything else that you would love to learn, something that you SO LOVE that you can look forward to each work day to do in the evening or weekends.

    I am in no way making light of the emotional abuse you suffer in your home. I do find in your posts amazing strength and looking for ways to get help. I applaud you, keep it up! When a person feels stuck, and there are times I did, and the more I thought about my problems the worse they seemed to get, UNTIL I discovered diversions. They helped me and I'm just passing that advice on!

    Sometimes when you find your mind on other things that make you happy and peaceful, the once tortured mind comes up with answers for the problems when you aren't really thinking about them.

    Did I say yet that I'm glad you're here!
    Last edited by Luba; 09-04-2008 at 09:39 AM. Reason: Adding another thought
    Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.


    True love is wanting to give to another person without any thought about
    who’s getting the better of the deal.

    Love always creates, it never destroys. In this lie's man's only promise

    ~All quotes by Leo Buscaglia


  17. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    1,272

    Re: Abusive parent??

    I have to tell you Oddy, that I believe that you are on the right track.
    Yes, I do love my father, and I do pity him. But what about me? I know it sounds selfish, but I am having problems too.
    Realization that you have needs that must be fullfilled. Whenever I have been at the lowest points in my life, I have always drawn into myself. A sort of self-realization, remind myself of WHO I am and what is good about me. What my strengths are and not just what some one else has to say about me.

    You are not wrong for the feelings that you have, and I believe that you are the strongest link in your family. Think about this, everyone else will brush aside their own thoughts and feelings to let your Father have his way. Just because you are having a hard time dealing with your Father doesn't mean anything about your personal fortitude. Standing up for yourself in a way that is *truly* helpful for your own well being is often harder than standing up for some one else; especially in situations like this.

    I made a similar choice but, my culture is very different since I live in the US. I severed ties with my abusive (emotionally and physically) Father for years. It took a lot of work on his part but he eventually realized that he was completely wrong. I cannot say that this would work for you because of reasons that you have already stated but I can say for sure that standing up for yourself makes you a strong person indeed. I couldn't do it and I had to move away completely to get away from him. I envy you in your choices and you have my complete respect.

    Welcome to Lifesupporters Oddy, I look forward to learning more about you

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Missouri, USA
    Posts
    2,640

    Re: Abusive parent??

    Quote Originally Posted by Oddysseus View Post
    So, since I know I cannot do this alone, I'll try to find help from others. You guys are certainly on the top of my list. And I hope i can continue to count on that.

    Thanks again everyone.
    Oddy.

    We will continue to be here, and continue to offer a shoulder to lean on and ear to listen. we'll keep giving advice, suggestions and just words of encouragement.

    you've come a long way from your first post already, you've realized things cannot change by themselves, and that you cant force or hope others will change to make things better for you. only YOU can do that.

    you've realized that you need to stick to seeing your psychiatrist because it helps you, not stop because its not convenient for your family.

    it may not sound like a HUGE amount to accomplish, but it truly is, and your doing so well because your willing to learn and understand and accept.

    you accepted there was a problem, thats what brought you here, and now, your learning to accept that it must be YOU to change it.

    thats an incredibly big thing to achieve.

    WELL DONE! *hug*

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    3,288

    Re: Abusive parent??

    Quote Originally Posted by Oddysseus View Post
    as her last attempt to persuade me to do what my father's demand, my mother tried to guilt me by saying "Don't you love your father? You must pity his condition."
    That's when it hits me. Yes, I do love my father, and I do pity him. But what about me? I know it sounds selfish, but I am having problems too. When I brought this up to mother, she simply refused to hear it and said it's all in the past. My father's problems are more urgent because they're hapenning now. That really made me more sad than angry. And I realize that my mother really will not change her views about the family situation and I just can't depend on her help anymore. So, since I know I cannot do this alone, I'll try to find help from others.
    Well done, oddy! It's not selfish at all. Your love and pity for your father is not conditional on him helping you with your problems and his love for you should not be conditional on you helping him with his. Of course we do what we can for those we love, but self sacrifice is not healthy if the other person isn't looking out for you too, if they take no matter what the cost is to the other person. You need to reserve your selfless giving for those that give back. As your family can't do that, you need to give what you need for basic happiness to yourself first and then to them. They will adjust - already they are warming up to you again.

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