Father Problems: I Need Help
  • I figure I'd come to you guys, since you've helped me a lot over the years. For the past six-seven years I've been living with my father since my mother moved to a new town and I didn't want to desert my friends, and my sister by moving away. It's been a constant struggle living here, since my father believes himself to be "better than everyone" and it's a daily routine of him freaking out over mundane things. I'll list off some scenarios, and hopefully you guys can help me a bit with what I should do, because honestly I'm reaching my breaking point.

    - My father is verbally, and emotionally abusive. Something I've never had to deal with in my life from a parent since I lived with my mother from birth till I was 14 years old. There's multiple occasions where he'll call me derogatory terms, and say he should just run away and never have to deal with me. He'll call me words around like "faggot" "queer", etc.

    - He'll get insanely angry over small things, and throw objects around the room. There was one occasion when I accidentally left a beer bottle on the kitchen counter, and he began a rather long swearing routine before throwing the bottle, which narrowly missed my head. I'm tired of nearly being hit by airborne objects, that are usually hefty.

    - And really, the final thing is that he gets extremely derogatory towards my sister by calling her a slut, etc. I'd like some feedback, and I can answer questions if people have any. Help please.
  • ........... It's no wonder your Mum moved away.
  • report him, call up social services if you can..but do not do it by yourself..you would need your sister to aswell, if it works like it does over here..they will launch an investigation
  • Yeah man, this is serious shit. No offense, but your dad needs to be taken care of. It's in your best interest to bring social services into this, if not for your own, for your sister's safety.
  • I agree SS seems like the only solution. Good Luck.
  • Wow, and I thought my "dad" was an asshole. I feel you Manio, and I know how tough it could get, especially when he's having a REALLY bad day, that could make life seem so hopeless in seconds.

    The only reason why I patiently stand aside is that I hope one day I can get out of this miss, no harm done to me, my mother, and my sister, well not any more at least. We don't have that SS here, and even if we did they'd be f***ing around to much to watch over us, which is why I don't hear much about them. In your case that seems like a good way out, but I'd say you MUST get in contact with your mother, or any relatives you trust way ahead of all of this.

    In my 19 years I've learned to keep my cool, and distance around crazy people. Trying not to intimidate them, letting them calm down on their own is the least damaging way to go. Before making your move, keep a voice/video recorder handy, just in case.

    Sorry for calling names, but I think we both know that even though their lifes suck, they have no right letting it out on others, specially family, so they deserves whatever sh** comes their way.

    Good luck!
  • Nobody else you can where you can stay? i wouldn't like to stay in that house.
  • Epke said:
    Nobody else you can where you can stay? i wouldn't like to stay in that house.

    Not exactly no. Most of my family is distant due to how conflicting everyone is with each other, plus my father turns into a different person around other family members/his parents in law. He got my grandfather wrapped around his finger, so if I try telling my grandfather about the verbal abuse, etc he wouldn't believe it, and would shrug me off and send me back home. My family isn't really supportive to one another, and the only two people I really care about is my mother, and sister. Everyone else has been manipulated by my father's "good" side, and it really fucking bites.

    It's pretty much the reason I'm at my friends house almost everyday, just to get away from the shit. Since my mother isn't around he's begun to make me his slave, like my mother, and his mother before him. If I'm busy doing things like finding a job, or helping out my elderly neighbor and don't have time to cook he'll come home, call me a "fucking bastard" because I didn't prepare a hot meal for him, or if I don't clean up his candy wrappers, soda bottles, and food he leaves lying around. He works for a living, from 6am to 6pm, and I understand why he wants to relax when he gets home, but if I forget to do one little thing he calls me a "lazy prick" and begins to say how he "does everything" around the house, which is what makes me angry. He's probably the laziest person I know, sure he works but his "life-style" and what-not when he's at home is completely different.

    He'll sit around eating massive amounts of junk-food, leaving food remains, garbage, etc just lying around the house and I have to clean it up. I even have to clean up HIS room on occasion, and will find myself finding food that I prepared about a week or so prior. It's gotten to the point where I'm having trouble finding a job because I'm constantly taking care of this house, and if I have a job I won't be able to cook meals all the time, and my father wouldn't do it so in turn either he'd starve, or my sister wouldn't get fed either (luckily, she's never home anymore. Always with her boyfriend). Plus, I don't think I can call SS since we're both over the age of 18? I'm turning 20 in two weeks time, and she'll be 19 in September.

    Either way, I don't mean to seem like a bitch-child, but I just need people to talk to about this problem. Plus, my parents been divorced since I was about four years old. So, I've never remembered or experienced a full, loving, family atmosphere. It's why I miss my mother so much, her work hours are insane and I hardly ever get to see her. Something the both of us get really upset about.
  • You can still contact social services and ask them for help, especially if you are concerned for your younger sister. Now that you are almost 20, you can get out from there if you want. Ask social services to see if they can help you with getting housing. At the very least, you could go to a shelter.
  • Manio said:
    Everyone else has been manipulated by my father's "good" side, and it really fucking bites.

    Yep, that's about right, then I suppose they're all like that.
  • Hi there.

    I haven’t posted in a long time so I should probably provide some context. With how things are going, the fiance has been getting really clucky dropping lines here and there into conversation about kids. I don’t want any anytime soon and my standard reply is always, “biologically we can’t, but let’s keep on trying.” This has gotten me evaluating myself, ourselves and really thinking about what it means to be a dad. I think this comment on Reddit really sums it up:

    I think the biggest thing is that it humanized women in jobs where they have chosen to be seen as objects, like strippers, porn stars, etc... I don't think I can ever go to a strip club again. I just end up thinking that the girl is someone's daughter: they had fake tea parties, she cuddled with him on the couch and watched TV, he came home from work and she threw her arms around his neck because she missed him while he was away.

    And people will probably say "they probably DIDN'T have that, and that's why they're stripping" but that makes me feel worse about it. The relationship between a daughter and her father is a powerful thing that's hard to describe. For a girl to miss out on that because her dad was awful or abandoned his family or was abusive... it simply makes me feel terrible.

    As a child (let's say, prior to turning 25... that's about the time I grew up) I never wanted a girl. I understood boys b/c I was a boy. I knew how to deal with them. Women are enigmas. Pubescent girls are awful people. But then I realized there was a special relationship between a girl and her dad, and by the time my wife and I started down that path, I was ok if it was a girl. And then when my daughter was born, it was like a flood of realization about the responsibility that was before me.

    It gave me a lot of opinions on what it means to be a man. Being a man isn't anger, it's not yelling, it's not violence, it's not fighting, it's not impatience, it's not acting before thinking. Being a man is making right decisions, it's doing the right thing, it's treating people well despite how they treat you, it's fully assessing a situation, it's understanding through perception, it's remaining calm, and it's doing all these things in the face of adversity. I'm not perfect; I make mistakes. But I do my best to be a good man, because my daughter needs that. She must know what a good man is, so that in what will feel like a few short years, when boys are falling over themselves to talk to her, she'll know what is good in a man.

    Source: http://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/vz13z/dads_of_reddit_how_has_having_daughters_changed/?sort=top

    So the keywords to take from the opening is “constant struggle, verbally abusive, emotionally abusive, near-miss physically abusive” followed up by “never experienced family.”

    Look, with how old you are, what I’m sensing are two things:
    • a fear of change/going into the world on your own; and
    • a sense of loyalty/responsibility to your dad.

    Here’s what I think you should do and why.

    You need start applying for jobs.

    I will help you with your resume. Get my email off of Sunflower or Tallchick. I am the IO/Sysadmin of a legal consultancy and a law firm. “I am a professional businessman who makes business profits.” I can make your resume into one of those fold open cards that sings and shoots outward confetti at prospective employers.

    You need to move out.

    When I moved out, deep down I was always just kind of scared. I had no idea how anything worked and what I was doing. But it all worked out somehow, not by my own competence or stride, but with that how things always end up. Unless you live in a third world country. But you don’t! So as scary and insurmountable as this new, unchartered step in your life seems, you need to get this done. Get yourself a job, rent out a little apartment and sleep in a sleeping bag if you have to.

    My advice on moving out is to buy the essentials – somewhere to sleep, internet/computer which is basically your home capacity (to further yourself) and clothes/cleaning stuff to keep clean/healthy. My fiance has poured oodles of money into our kitchen and all I care about is the fridge, microwave and little nook where I put my snacks. That’s all you need. Your body has basic needs and so long as they are met, the world is your oyster.

    Take the risk of a low interest credit card if you have to but never go 10% above your yearly income if you’re starting off.

    I know that you think by moving out, you’re abandoning your dad. He is a grown adult who can actually look after himself if you weren’t caring for him. There are lots of people who tough it out worse. He will be fine.

    To address the whole righteous/fealty issue, you owe it to your dad to get your shit together and live a happy life. That’s all a dad wants. Are you happy? Yes/No? If yes, his life is vindicated. He may not know it now with how you’ve both lapsed into a routine, but if you venture out into the world against the odds and create a life that’s better than the one he is giving you now, he will ultimately be happier than if you personally unwrapped his lollies and placed them delicately in his mouth. Your dad may be x, y and z abusive, but he has the same primal wants as anybody else.

    So to sum it up, you need to understand that the world seems like a hard place but you can do it because it gives the semblance of being more difficult than it really is and by the virtue of everybody else doing it. And that you need to properly honour your dad by creating a life better than the one he gave you. You can turn around and help him financially later down the line.

    The worst thing you can do in this situation is to let things continue. My fiance came from a similar situation. We’re buying his mum a house in London so she never has to worry about the rent again. We will one day, (with me being dragged kicking and screaming into it) start our own family to create and experience that full, loving, family atmosphere.
  • Hi there.

    I haven't posted in a long time so I should probably provide some context, I'm an asshole.

    Sloth put the following in a much more organized and tactful manner, but I gave it a go.

    You're both adults you can't call social services, actually your Dad could kick you out if he wanted. That he doesn't shows that either he loves you or wants an emotional punching bag around, probably a combo of both. Think about it like this. He's probably going to a job he hates, coming home, and has to continue spending money on these kids that should have moved out a year or two ago. You aren't living a cinderella story, because the evil stepmother is busting her ass to provide you with a home, food, etc. The biggest alarm bell for me was you painted yourself as an angel, very very teen angsty.

    Could he be less of an asshole? Yes, but you don't get to choose your parents so either make amends or burn bridges - either way MOVE OUT. Really your Dad sounds like a pretty normal 40s-50s single lower middle class dude. Messy, unhealthy, kind of emotionally unstable, but having enough general charisma and will to make it by in society. Parents and kids have unrealistic expectations of each other because we're brainwashed by portrayals of families in media, either they're super awesome with a few hiccups, or super fucked up. The reality imo is that raising kids and being raised is a generally unpleasant experience with a few bursts of awesome. It is much easier to empathize with your parents when you are living on your own and supporting yourself (and MUCH MUCH easier when you have kids I would imagine).

    You and your sister need to move out. Get a temporary job and use the money to live shittily while acquiring a skill that will allow you to live more comfortably. Unless you have some seriously fucked up stuff on your record or are extremely incompetent you can get a shitty job in like a week easily in the U.S as long as you aren't picky.

    Your #1 priority should be to become financially independent. This will do wonders for your confidence and maturity. Don't start tomorrow, don't start in an hour, start right now. Go on craigslist, taskrabbit, monster, whatevz. Don't stop looking until you find a job and have a plan for moving out. When you aren't looking, plan, when you aren't planning, look. Once everything is in place, act on it and go. There are lots of little things you can do to aid you in this, creating a todo list of basic tasks, setting larger goals for yourself, establishing a routine, you just have to play around and find what works for you. Usually there is no one approach to life that will work forever, you need to adapt and change your approaches to doing things as you get bored or demotivated, that is part of the fun in it.

    If you take action and keep moving forward, things should get better. Life isn't always fair, and usually hard work is not immediately rewarded externally, but it does wonders for you internally. If you don't give up you'll eventually (talking years here) hit a stride and while you may not become rich and famous you should be able to reach any realistic goals you set. Just remember your life isn't going to change overnight, these things take time, and more importantly persistence.

    P.S. I remember a few years ago Sunny gave extremely similar advice to someone in a similar situation (less harsh though), and I barbed back with "No he should find a job he wants!! Otherwise he'll just get depressed, hate his life, blah blah, etc." Wrong. Financial independence allows you to spend what free time you have to pursue your interests, meaning acquiring new skills that will possibly give you access to more rewarding jobs that can support your life expenses.

    P.P.S. When you get some down time you should try making a movie, show, music, game, painting, something. Find some creative outlet. Interesting idea, would like to see some thing that tries to accurately portray a more "real" family experience. Find some hobby outside of playing video games or worse posting or lurking on forums. As a 20 year old, these activities engage you just enough to tire out your brain but not enough to provide any significant gains most of the time. I'm not saying don't play them, games are fun and awesome, but having a hobby where you produce something is much more intrinsically rewarding (and makes you more interesting to others, making it easier to make friends, etc. see next point). This sounds really fake, but doing interesting things and trying new stuff (your hobbies say programming and cooking so you're on a roll!) opens your mind, allowing you to more easily empathize with others, establish relationships, and just enjoy the little details in life.

    P.P.P.S. After actually clicking the link in Sloth's post, I feel like I have to make one of his points way more explicit. NETWORK. Like I know it sounds cheesy and shitty and fake, but networking is just a fancy way of saying make friends. Think about it this way, the upsides of being friendly with others ENORMOUSLY outweighs doing nothing or being boring. I know, being social is awkward and all those social activities are sooooooo fake, but just do it. You are not a unique snowflake, everyone else also realizes this. Participating in things you are uncomfortable with allows you to become friends with people whom you would not normally interact with. You get a better world view, you and your friends might come up with craaaaaazy ideas that eventually become insanely profitable, you push each other and provide support, they can refer you for things, ...just fuckjkfdjsfjalf odjod DDOIIIIT. If I could give any advice to my 17 year old self it would be "YOU ARE NOT CLOUD STRIFE STOP BEING FKIN GAE AND HANG OUT WITH PEOPLE."
  • Both Sloth and Trikker give very sound advice.

    I will say that getting a real full time job and moving out really helped me be free of an overbearing, overprotective family when I left home at... 23.

    Yep. 23.

    I got a job in a different town about an hour's drive away. And moved away. And while I miss my hometown and my parents and go to visit them occasionally, it felt really great to be away from them and FINALLY, truly, independent.

    I would definitely take up Sloth on his offer to help you out with your resume.

    If I may suggest... if you manage to move somewhere like a larger city, you may be able to find a roommate that can help you split rent in a 2 bedroom apartment (or maybe your sister gets a job too and you share rent for a 2 bedroom, or a 1 bedroom and one of you uses the living room as a bedroom and you get a folding screen for privacy). Also, due to the fact that it's a larger city, you won't need to own a car which is a HUGE major expense, especially in Canada. That's what I did when I first moved out... it really wasn't until I had a car that I was living hand-to-mouth.

    And dude... I may not be able to provide help or advice with regards to abusive situations... but if you need any advice from a fellow Canadian from your neck of the woods, who has skipped around the province like a stone across water moving and dealing with life, let me know :D
  • I'd agree with trikker and Tallchick. Move out and get a job. Rest will be easier and slowly overtime you will get to a better place. At that point any of the interaction with him is on your terms. He is nice and friendly sure, meet up and see him, no? Get out. You don't owe him anything and have your own place and job to be at. Long distance relationship is one of the best ways of dealing with "troublesome" people

    Here is my personal story
    At age of 18 I've left my parents house and joined the military (Not a step that I would advise normally so skip to the next bit) at 21 I've met my GF (currently fiancée) and left the military to get a crappy min wage phone tech support job. Few years passed by and I lots of hard work in I've landed a better job, repeat the cycle a few times and with age (23-25 sounds like a lot now but your bosses or firm manager or whatever who are normally in charge are in their late 40s or 50s. To then 20ish is basically a baby or at least that's how they would normally treat it) and more field experiences I've climbed up the job market to currently have a well paying job in a comfortable environment where I able to afford annual abroad vacations while paying a mortgage for the house. What am I trying to say? It get's better.

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

In this Discussion

Most Popular This Week