Author Topic: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46, 55, 69.  (Read 17058 times)

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chibichan

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46, 55
« Reply #60 on: November 29, 2013, 05:34:14 PM »
Best wishes to your grandma!

That guilt trip stuff is so low. I'm sorry you're dealing with this. I would text or email him one last time and say something like -

"I never said I don't want to see you or speak to you or have you in my home. I said I don't want to hear anymore bad-mouthing of Mom. The issues between the two of you are YOURS. Sis and I are done listening to it from BOTH of you. Find a more appropriate person to vent to than your children.

So yes, if you have nothing to say to me other than crap about Mom, it looks like we won't be speaking for awhile. That is YOUR choice."

This is exactly what you should do .

I know you are annoyed beyond reason now but maybe if you reassured him that you love him and your mother equally , it might help him accept the concrete boundaries you are putting up .

Like little kids in a playground squabble , they seem to be using the If You're Not With Me - You're Against Me  tactic to try to force you to choose a side .

This is just a horrible thing for a parent to do .
The key to avoiding trouble is to learn to recognize it from a distance.

TootsNYC

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46, 55
« Reply #61 on: November 30, 2013, 06:25:52 PM »
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That guilt trip stuff is so low. I'm sorry you're dealing with this. I would text or email him one last time and say something like -

"I never said I don't want to see you or speak to you or have you in my home. I said I don't want to hear anymore bad-mouthing of Mom. The issues between the two of you are YOURS. Sis and I are done listening to it from BOTH of you. Find a more appropriate person to vent to than your children.

So yes, if you have nothing to say to me other than crap about Mom, it looks like we won't be speaking for awhile. That is YOUR choice."

I wouldn't suggest this. I think you should just go deep. "Rig for silent running," they call it in the submarines. They tamp everything down, and they sink deep, deep, deep, and nobody (hopefully) knows they're there.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silent_running_(submarine)

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eliminating superfluous noise: nonessential systems are shut down, the crew is urged to rest and refrain from making any unnecessary sound, and speed is greatly reduced

I'd vote for a total time out. Just fade away for a while. If you have to see people at the hospital when you're visiting Grandma, have that phrase ready for cut-and-paste ("I'm hear for Grandma, this is not the time for this conversation") and be ready to walk away. Even if it's abruptly, and even if it looks like you're walking away because you're mad. Even better, in fact--it's time they realized there are consequences to suffer. And any onlookers (other family members) will be on your side completely, esp. if you walk away rather than live with a scene.

RooRoo

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46, 55
« Reply #62 on: December 01, 2013, 11:03:30 PM »
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...maybe if you reassured him that you love him and your mother equally , it might help him accept the concrete boundaries you are putting up .
I respectfully disagree.

The next words would be "If you really loved me, you'd listen to my rants, take my side, become my Realtor, [and otherwise resemble a doormat] !"  ::) :P
"Someday we must write a book of Etiquette for sensible people," said Mrs. Morland, "though apart from a few rules it really boils down to an educated mind and a kind heart." ~ Angela Thirkell, Never Too Late

blarg314

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46, 55
« Reply #63 on: December 02, 2013, 02:46:32 AM »
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...maybe if you reassured him that you love him and your mother equally , it might help him accept the concrete boundaries you are putting up .

I suspect that a good part of the problem is that  Dad doesn't want to be loved equally - he wants to be loved *more*. He wants to OP on his side, conspiring against her mother. He wants her to believe his stories, but not her mom's.

bopper

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46
« Reply #64 on: December 02, 2013, 09:30:31 AM »
Thank you to everyone here for your advice, thoughts and support!!

My father called at 7:50am this morning. It began with a brusque, insincere (imo) apology followed by more attempted guilt tripping ("I'm planning on spending Christmas alone").

Long story short, it didn't go especially well and ended with me telling him (in tears) that he was being mean to me. He hung up on me stating that he was too emotional to speak to me any longer.

At this point, I feel like I really need to take a break from this whole stupid thing. When/if my father calls or comes to my house again over the next few weeks, would it be warranted for me to tell him that I can't speak to/see him right now?

Also, although she hasn't done anything wrong since my sister and I had the intervention with my parents, I don't really feel up to seeing/speaking to my mother right now either. The whole situation has left me feeling kind of raw and emotionally battered and I feel like I need time to heal. However, the timing couldn't be worse - my grandmother (my mother's mother) is undergoing surgery for cancer today.

Should I just suck it up given the circumstances or is it okay to say enough is enough? I'm not looking to issue a cut direct, more like a time out.

"You know what Dad?  You keep up this and you will be spending Christmas alone and it will be your choice.  I am not interested in a bickering passive agressive holiday so I will be spending it with people who want to have a nice time.  I hope that will be you, too."

peach2play

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46, 55
« Reply #65 on: December 03, 2013, 07:49:55 PM »
You are not responsible for his happiness.  You do not need to try and reason with an unreasonable person.  This is hard.  You can do it.  Stay firm and huge hugs!

Pen^2

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46, 55
« Reply #66 on: December 04, 2013, 10:10:32 PM »
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...maybe if you reassured him that you love him and your mother equally , it might help him accept the concrete boundaries you are putting up .

I suspect that a good part of the problem is that  Dad doesn't want to be loved equally - he wants to be loved *more*. He wants to OP on his side, conspiring against her mother. He wants her to believe his stories, but not her mom's.

Yes--how much you love someone should not be a topic for discussion. "Of course I love you, don't be silly!" and that's it. Once you start comparing it with others, even if you're as fair as possible about it, it's like JADEing and opens it up as a conversation. Plus, there will always be people who are unhappy, no matter how fair you are.

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46
« Reply #67 on: December 05, 2013, 09:36:14 AM »

Seriously?? He's my dad and all but WHAT A JERK!!!


It's always an unsettling epiphany when we realize these things about our parents isn't it?  I remember the time I realized my mother was an extremely selfish and rather self centered person.  I seriously thought the world was going to stop spinning when I admitted it to myself

Agreed.  I learned before I was 10 that my dad was not a good person and while sure we had a few moments where we could get along, I just really didn't like the guy very much and thought my mom deserved a lot better and kept wishing they'd divorce.

Then when I was a teen I started learning more and more about the kind of woman my mother was and realized she wasn't a very nice person either.  I'm not even sure if they like each other but they'll never divorce.

But anyway as for the OP's father, well...I'm thinking it's one of those times when it gets worse before it gets better.  I hate to say it but it really is like trying to teach a small child to stop doing something naughty.  They're going to keep doing it to test their limits till they truly get "This is not allowed."

My 2 year old spent more time in  time out yesterday than he spent out of it but he will learn to listen when mama says "No".
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

weeblewobble

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46, 55
« Reply #68 on: January 12, 2014, 06:31:34 PM »
Hey OP, any update?  How did Christmas go?

oopsie

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Re: Parents should be divorced = awkward Christmas! Update #8, 18, 28, 46, 55
« Reply #69 on: January 14, 2014, 11:37:20 AM »
Hey OP, any update?  How did Christmas go?

Since my last update, my dad ended up calling again to give me another update on my grandmother and gave me a sincere apology as well. He has not crossed the line since.

We ended up having the family over to our house for lunch on Christmas day. My parents arrived in separate vehicles and behaved themselves. They did not interact with each other much but the small amount they both joined in to a conversation did not result in any nitpicking or fighting.

Overall, it went as well as I could have hoped!

weeblewobble

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Awesome!  Good for you!

Marbles

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Fantastic update! I hope the future has more of this in store for you.

aussie_chick

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Great update! I hope your parents continue to behave themselves!

TootsNYC

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If you ever have to discuss this with them again, you now have a "good example" to point them to: "remember how things were last Christmas? That's what I need from you."