Any advice appreciated

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Bayview

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Any advice appreciated
« on: November 03, 2014, 04:57:42 PM »
Hello all,

What a great idea, a forum for dads

I have in the past received some great advice from all board members both male and female.

I like most nonPD dads am really concerned about the impact my uBPDw is having on  my daughter.  If she has managed to make my life such a hell then what impact is she having on my child?

All I want is the best for my daughter and to give her a chance to grow up without being impacted by the warped thinking of my wife and her messed up family.  As the saying goes "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree"

How did you minimise the impact of the warped thinking and rages on your children?

Also how did you manage other issues associated with being married to a PD wife such as:

1.  Abandonment issues (my wife was in tears one morning because I was going to work)
2.  Suspicions such as I spent some money without her knowledge (permission really)
3.  Accusations of infidelities (not true)
4.  Financially controlling every dollar I earn
5.  Alienation of family and friends
6.  Showing empathy about the seemingly endless list of ailments and procedures my wife has
7.  Motivating them to get paid employment (I earn very good money, we own our house but there is never any money in the bank).  She has sponged off me since day one with promices to work or make her failed business work or sell surplus cloth etc on online auctions - no action yet and it has now been over 4 years

I am over it and want to leave but a struggling with making it happen

When did you say enough is enough and end the relationship and how did you avoid the pitfalls such as being sucked back into the madness?

Thanks
Bayview

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Brave_heart

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2014, 09:24:44 PM »
Hi bayview! So glad you posted. Most of your questions need to be answered from another Dad's pov but I can help with one (or at least try) ;)

How do you minimize impact?

I can tell you what I experienced and may be it will help. When I was about 7 or 8, my dad started reading a chapter a night to me. Sometimes more, sometimes less but always a chapter from a book that he was "guiding" me to read. We did this for many years.  Every night I sat in his lap or close to him while he read. My dad has a deep voice and I have always enjoyed listening. Through this we built our relationship and created an unbreakable relationship. We haven't always agreed or gotten along, but Ive never doubted that he loves me. My dad kept me grounded in the fog. We didn't have a name for drama but his relationship with me kept me grounded when mom and I had our struggles. I think my best advice would be to build a relationship with your daughter. You don't have to talk about pd, but give her a base to recognize love instead of "earned love" let her make mistakes without the fear of being abandoned.....Love holds no record of wrongs...but rejoices with the truth.

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divorcingnpd

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2014, 09:40:54 PM »
Hi Bayview -

When did I have enough? When I saw how distressed my wife's behavior was making my daughter and I attempted to gently suggest an alternate parenting approach afterwards in private and she flew into a huge rage. It was a sign from God for me. I realized then and there that I could not protect my daughter while still being married to her. And I was not going to be complicit in my wife gas lighting and invalidating my daughter.

How did I avoid getting sucked back into the madness? I had the divorce papers served by a process server when I was not at the house. My lawyer advised me on this. She still tried to talk me out of my decision but I held firm and told her I was not coming back to the house and that my decision was not changing. It also helps if you stop having sex with your wife prior to filing. My wife always wanted to use sex as the smoothing agent for her bad behavior, but I was able to get much more clarity about what I needed to do when I stopped having sex with her (easier said than done!).

My strategy for minimizing her impact on my daughter is to have 50% parenting time where I am free to parent in the way I see fit. I have given up hope of having any control over her behavior. The best I can do is to model good behavior 50% of the time for my daughter.

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eclipse

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2014, 09:49:16 PM »
Thanks for posting Bayview - I was getting a bit worried that this new board might never get going.   :unsure:

I lived with all 7 of your list for years. I could have written that list myself.

I'm divorced now, but even being divorced, my ex still has a lot of influence on my kids. My philosophy is that I can't undo the fact that their mom has a PD - the only thing I can control is how I behave when they are around me. So I have tried to give them the best experiences I can while I have the strength/money/mental capacity to do it.

I have spent a horrendous amount of money on summer vacations - that is just something that means a lot to me - some of my strongest memories of my own childhood are of family vacations. So it's a priority for me.

I have got behind some crazy projects that my kids have been interested in, just because I want them to be unafraid to chase after their dreams. Even ones that I knew were going to be messy. One day we decided make our own bricks out of mud. We adopted toads and lizards caught in the back yard. We made our own halloween costumes. We tied $10 bills in ziploc bags to helium balloons and let them loose in the yard just imagining they might help someone in need.

I think those kind of things don't undo the bad stuff, but they do create good history.

There are lots of members here in Unchosen who didn't turn out exactly like a PD parent - so that gives me hope too.

When I was still married to the kids mom, I took them out every weekend - that got me and the kids away from the chaos for a while. We went to a lot of places. I sometimes wished we could just hang out at home but that meant dealing with their mom. I developed routines - the stop at the gas station with the smoothies, the road with the bump that makes your tummy go whee, the library with the fun computer game, the grocery store with the ride-along carts, the crazy song on my iPod that made me drive in a shoogly way (not recommended on busy roads) the park with the train and the fountain you could run through. I was exhausted much of the time and some times I tried to motivate myself by thinking of myself as a pitcher pouring into glasses - sacrificing my life for my kids.

My kids are in the teens now and they are starting to talk to me about some of the contradictions with their mom. I can see that they recognize that all is not right there. In some way they are hoping that I will have the power to fix it but I don't. They get frustrated with their mom and frustrated with me that I don't try to fix it. They still love their mom.

I decided to leave once I had made up my mind it was in the kids best interests to do it. Divorcing someone with a PD is hellish - and I discovered it was easier to go through with it when I convinced myself I was doing it for my kids sake than just for my own sake.


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Marathon

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2014, 11:01:02 PM »
My son
,34 4 kids,great marriage, recently texted this to me while he was on a well deserved vacation. I will treasure this.     
"I was thinking of something. You are not a weak man. You've had to fight your whole life since you were young in every aspect of your life. Whether it be home, business or even spiritual. You are a peacemaker which to some may seam like weakness. The bible says blessed are the peacemakers..."
He recently went NC with my uNPDw,his stepm.

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Freedomfromabuse

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2014, 03:09:07 AM »
I really enjoy being a peace maker.

How do you make peace with someone who is trying to destroy you and the children you love?  When my wife raged in front of my daughter and I saw the fear on her little face, I realized that I needed to do what was right for my daughter at all costs.  I got her out of that home and away from that mother who would have destroyed us both.  My advice is to read the Bible.

Joshua 1:9 says "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."

A great movie that came out recently is called "Courageous"

I am praying for your children.  They are looking to us for protection.  Please be as it says in the Bible in Matthew 10:16.

"Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves."

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Stillconfused

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2014, 09:55:58 PM »
Hi Bayview,

I'm not a man, but I am a parent with a PD ex, so perhaps my experience can help you.

My ex-husband is NPD and I was always terrrified of his effect on our son while he was growing up (we divorced when DS was quite young). DS would always praise his dad, seemed to think his dad was a good person, tried to copy some of his behaviours, etc, despite the fact that his dad treated him like rubbish, as all narcissists tend to do.

Then when DS turned 20, he saw his dad for who he really is, and now they hardly talk. I was absolutely dumbfounded by this development. DS certainly has some NPD fleas from his dad, but they are also from my NPD FOO so I'm not sure how much influence came from his dad.

I guess my point is that even if your daughter isn't treated well or copies some of her mom's behaviour, you need to trust that your good influence will prevail in the end, and that your daughter will one day see her mother for who she really is.

Best wishes to you.
“It's only when we truly know and understand that we have a limited time on earth -- and that we have no way of knowing when our time is up -- that we will begin to live each day to the fullest, as if it was the only one we had.”
― Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

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7yearsdrained

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2014, 09:39:15 AM »
Glad to see a topic for the dads. I myself have a 5 year old and am separated from my partner right now, my choice, and am trying to get financially stable to rebuild my life. I was the stay at home dad during my daughters first years. I have come to the conclusion that I (me not working) was the source of all our problems but have been reading up on BPD and think that it is possible there is more here than meets the eye. The thing that stuck out in my head as the years moved on was that every attempt to finally solve whatever chaos was present and get back to work always resulted in something where the bottom would fall out and I would be back at square one. For this I would blame myself but am now (having read about BPD) thinking that I'm susceptible to manipulation and that she is somehow (unconsciously) orchestrating the chaos. Since I have been out of the house I am more and more certain that this is true.

I also worry about my daughter. I will post specifics on another post, just wanted to get in the conversation since i just joined.

As a side note I feel I should mention that I am double posting since I found this site but also have an account at bpdfamily with the same username. Why? I want to get this out anywhere and everywhere so that I'm in communication (and possibly solidarity) with as many others as possible.. my fear being that if others have been as 'knocked on their ass' as I have - that getting and giving advise about our experiences is best done in large numbers. (me just talking to say 2 other guys is not as good as me talking to 6 other guys)

Good luck and best wishes to all of you that are working through these things.


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Charles6722

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2014, 08:44:28 AM »
Hello all,

What a great idea, a forum for dads

I have in the past received some great advice from all board members both male and female.

I like most nonPD dads am really concerned about the impact my uBPDw is having on  my daughter.  If she has managed to make my life such a hell then what impact is she having on my child?

All I want is the best for my daughter and to give her a chance to grow up without being impacted by the warped thinking of my wife and her messed up family.  As the saying goes "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree" [qoute]

Very similar to my own experience, it did appear to be family dynamic at work, control, triangulation, keep me "in the box" so to speak was always paramount.

[qoute]
How did you minimise the impact of the warped thinking and rages on your children?

Also how did you manage other issues associated with being married to a PD wife such as:

1.  Abandonment issues (my wife was in tears one morning because I was going to work)
2.  Suspicions such as I spent some money without her knowledge (permission really)
3.  Accusations of infidelities (not true)
4.  Financially controlling every dollar I earn
5.  Alienation of family and friends
6.  Showing empathy about the seemingly endless list of ailments and procedures my wife has
7.  Motivating them to get paid employment (I earn very good money, we own our house but there is never any money in the bank).  She has sponged off me since day one with promices to work or make her failed business work or sell surplus cloth etc on online auctions - no action yet and it has now been over 4 years [qoute]

All these items are VERY familiar to me, but think of it as projection, I hate you/don't leave me dynamic, never ending emotional drama.....YOU will never be able to earn enough or GIVE enough empathy to satisfy her. The promises are to keep you hoping.....and providing.


[qoute]
I am over it and want to leave but a struggling with making it happen

When did you say enough is enough and end the relationship and how did you avoid the pitfalls such as being sucked back into the madness? [qoute]

I would read I hate you/don't leave, emotional Blackmail as well as "stop walking on eggshells" the last book really opened my eyes when I was intent on "fixing" my marriage........in my case, it wasn't remotely possible.
 
Ahh, the defining moment, there were several, a big one was when I received a call from my FIL, asking about why the mortgage payment was late....the next day I "took" my paycheck back and paid the bills myself, this wasn't popular, but I was sick of never having enough and ALWAYS being behind on bills, oddly enough, it was empowering...but, there were consequences. another instance was her raging at the kids and at me, I would plan carefully, before you consider a final solution, PD's can be exceptionally perceptive at "reading" the intention's of non's after all, they picked us and have studied us like lab rats in a maze...



Wear your insecurities like armor and it can never be used to hurt you

- C.E.

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Freedomfromabuse

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2014, 01:44:00 AM »
You made some good points, Charles6722.  Those books have helped me, too.  PDs can be very charming and encouraging.  It is easy to become attracted to one especially if you like to help people.  My ex is very skillful at knowing everything about me, my strengths and my weaknesses.  She kept her true motives a secret and then when I found out the truth, she used everything she knew about me to use against me as she filed false statements with the police and the courts.  I figured out what she was doing by listening to her false allegations about what I was doing.  That is how she gave herself away.  She went to the police and the courts to complain about me describing activities I did in the past (which were false).  When I found out what she had said about me, I knew that she was planning to do those activities and it became a race to intercept and prevent her from committing acts of abuse.  I thank God everyday that we succeeded at bringing out the truth.  Many children have suffered greatly because the police and/or courts believed the wrong parent.  Let's pray for those children.  Many suffer greatly and some do not survive the acts of abuse that a PD parent can inflict upon them.

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Findingmyvoice

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #10 on: September 28, 2017, 05:19:38 PM »
Hi bayview! So glad you posted. Most of your questions need to be answered from another Dad's pov but I can help with one (or at least try) ;)

How do you minimize impact?

I can tell you what I experienced and may be it will help. When I was about 7 or 8, my dad started reading a chapter a night to me. Sometimes more, sometimes less but always a chapter from a book that he was "guiding" me to read. We did this for many years.  Every night I sat in his lap or close to him while he read. My dad has a deep voice and I have always enjoyed listening. Through this we built our relationship and created an unbreakable relationship. We haven't always agreed or gotten along, but Ive never doubted that he loves me. My dad kept me grounded in the fog. We didn't have a name for drama but his relationship with me kept me grounded when mom and I had our struggles. I think my best advice would be to build a relationship with your daughter. You don't have to talk about pd, but give her a base to recognize love instead of "earned love" let her make mistakes without the fear of being abandoned.....Love holds no record of wrongs...but rejoices with the truth.

This is something that I really needed to read today. When my kids were about that age I did the same thing, I kind of forgot about it until I read this.
I read the Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, The Hobbit, the Life of PI. I hope that it had the same positive effect on my kids as it had on you.
At that point things were much better than they are now.
I feel like I am constantly doing damage control from the drama.  Giving my kids a calm voice and someone who will listen to them.
Supporting them, celebrating their victories, teaching them that the world is a good place and that they are good people.

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SonofThunder

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2017, 09:50:16 AM »
Lots of great responses and hopefully the OPoster, Bayview, is reading them, although I see Bayview has not commented since the OP.  Like others, I will chime in the details that I have 2 kids in their 20’s, and I have been married to my uBPDw (their mom) for over 25years and both my kids are doing very well and are nons. 

I have only been aware of the existence of PD’s for the last couple years, but by grace, I have been using the ‘tools’ here on OOTF throughout their entire upbringing, without knowing, because those actions, reactions were the only way to minimize, protect, shield and thwart the PD’s drama toward me and/or them.

Sure, my kids witnessed the drama sometimes, but their very close relationship with me, and their own growing toolbox, from my instruction to them over the years (without a diagnosis name for it) has helped them continue to have a great relationship with their mom.   

If PD issues had escalated to areas of physical harm or intense emotional harm attempts, I would have walked away, with my kids, but it did not escalated to that point, thank God. 

Cheers,

SoT
Proverbs 17:1
A meal of bread and water in contented peace is better than a banquet spiced with quarrels.

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biggerfish

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Re: Any advice appreciated
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2017, 11:16:07 AM »
Hi bayview! So glad you posted. Most of your questions need to be answered from another Dad's pov but I can help with one (or at least try) ;)

How do you minimize impact?

I can tell you what I experienced and may be it will help. When I was about 7 or 8, my dad started reading a chapter a night to me. Sometimes more, sometimes less but always a chapter from a book that he was "guiding" me to read. We did this for many years.  Every night I sat in his lap or close to him while he read. My dad has a deep voice and I have always enjoyed listening. Through this we built our relationship and created an unbreakable relationship. We haven't always agreed or gotten along, but Ive never doubted that he loves me. My dad kept me grounded in the fog. We didn't have a name for drama but his relationship with me kept me grounded when mom and I had our struggles. I think my best advice would be to build a relationship with your daughter. You don't have to talk about pd, but give her a base to recognize love instead of "earned love" let her make mistakes without the fear of being abandoned.....Love holds no record of wrongs...but rejoices with the truth.
This is nothing short of brilliant.  :yeahthat: